For some months now, I have been following the extraordinary saga of the Nepalese climber Nirmal Purja (aka Nims) as he set out to climb the world’s 14 highest peaks in a record time.
It was only when I was in Nepal just now, on my own w-a-y more modest climbing trip, that I realised how huge an icon this young man is in his own country.
All our sherpas were avid followers of his exploits, and when we got the news that his team had at last got permission from China to climb the final, 14th peak, Shishapangma, there was much cheering.
So the BBC breaking news alert that Nims and his team had summited Shishapangma this morning was a brilliant addition to the day.
A Nepalese former British army soldier has climbed all 14 of the world’s 8,000-metre-high mountains in a record-breaking 189 days – a feat that has taken other climbers years to achieve.
Nirmal “Nims” Purja, who came to international attention this year with the publication of his shocking photograph of a queue of climbers close to the summit of Everest, completed the last of his 14 climbs, to the summit of Shishapangma, at 8.58am local time on Tuesday, almost exactly on the schedule predicted by his support team last week.
“Mission achieved!” Purja reported from the summit with his teammates Mingma David Sherpa, Galjen Sherpa and Gesman Tamang.
“Everything in life is possible armed only with determined approach and positive mindset.” 14/14 in 6 months, 6 days
WHAT an amazing feat.
How can you not be a little bit in love with this young man – who was a Gurkha in the British army, was awarded the MBE and…”his climbing career began when he walked to Everest base camp in 2012 and, instead of returning as planned, decided to climb the entire mountain.
What a rockstar!
Absolutely thrilled for Nims and his team. Thrilled for lovely Nepal, a country of such beauty and such bravery.
And to see such a phenomenal achievement is exciting, pushing, as it does, as the human spirit and courage to unbelievable limits.
By the way, the previous record for climbing all 14 peaks was seven years, 10 months and six days.
Go Nims and his amazing team! From nearly 8 years to 6 months!