My passion for high altitude mountaineering began about three years ago, in a search to gain some perspective in my life, I made the bold decision to climb the highest mountain in Africa, Kilimanjaro – a solo adventure. Standing on the Roof of Africa, teeming with ‘electric’ energy, was the moment I realised my true power and what I was capable of. Since then I have climbed four of the Seven Summits and I intend on summitting the remaining the three, Karstenz Pyramid, Mount Everest and Mount Vinson in 2020. I am on track to be the youngest African to scale the acclaimed Seven Summits. Mountains are my home, they bring me hope and they fuel me with a deep and powerful sense of belonging.
There is no question about it, in the mountains women are strong – physically and mentally – and undeniably brave and courageous. In a world where pushing the limits and boundaries of what we can achieve is becoming a way of life, where chasing our ‘crazy’ dreams is encouraged (for the most part) and where making an impact while doing so is more relevant than ever! However, looking back on the history of climbing, this has not always been the case. We weren’t ‘allowed’ to go out and pursue these mountain dreams of ours. Back in 1963, of the 100 applicants for the American Everest expedition team, three were woman, and none were chosen. It was believed that women were too weak and would not be strong enough to carry their loads and tolerate the severe conditions, and men could not be trusted to behave appropriately while in their company. But today this is a different story, women are making history and unleashing high levels of ambition, determination and grace.