Celebrating 10th Anniversary of Everest Summit
It’s exactly 10 years to the day that I stood on the summit of Mount Everest together with Anna Shekhdar & Rob Casserley and our Sherpas Thundu & Namgyel. It was summit success all round for my immediate team who, led by Kenton Cool was made up of Ben Stephens, Omar Samra and Greg Maud, all students at the London Business School and members of the Rock & Mountain Club.
The memories are as vivid as ever and the experience has affected my life in positive ways every single day since. I am overwhelmed when I think of all the people that supported me and my team to get there, it’s absolutely impossible to list you all but you know who you are, from providing sponsorship (Investec Asset Management & Defaqto and many others), technical advice, words of encouragement, leadership on the mountain, media coverage, kit & equipment, help with packing and so much more. Thank you again.
People often ask me “where did it all begin?”, “did your mum and dad take you camping?”
Growing up on my family farm certainly instilled a love of the outdoors in me, but there are three organisations to thank for developing that interest and drawing me to cold places and snow-capped mountains. It was as a Brownie & Girl Guide that I bought my first sleeping bag, camped under canvas and completed my ‘Camp Permit’ badge. This led me to do the DofE, starting with Bronze and working up to Gold. And from there, the ultimate leap, to join the British Exploring Expedition to Iceland in 2000.
It’s the people I met during that expedition to Iceland and subsequently when I worked in the British Exploring office at the Royal Geographical Society that sparked an ambition to explore more of the world and more of what I was capable of. I never dreamt that each subsequent adventure would lead me to the summit of Mount Everest where I became the first Welsh woman to reach the top and the youngest British female (at the time, aged 25).
Take a look at this video which captures my reaction having descended from the summit to the South Col at 7,950m. My breathing is a great reminder of what it’s like to be in hypoxic conditions at 7,950m.