She’s already climbed Everest more times than any other woman on Earth, and now she’s trying for one more. Recently, Lhakpa Sherpa could have been confused for any other mother of three living in Connecticut, walking her kids home from school and working two jobs, one as a housekeeper, the other as a cashier at a 7-Eleven. But the newly divorced 43-year-old is no ordinary mom. She’s climbed Everest 6 times (once while 2-months pregnant), and now she’s going for her seventh.
History has often pushed Lhakpa to the footnotes. Five of her 6 summits came on expeditions led by her ex-husband, with whom she had a tumultuous relationship that she says made her hesitant to seek the spotlight for her achievements.
In 2000 she became the first woman from Nepal to summit Everest and descend alive. She’d petitioned the Nepalese prime minister’s office and rounded up corporate sponsors to back an all-Sherpa women’s expedition. “They were scared,” Lhakpa told Outside Magazine. “And me, I say, I wanna go to the summit. Really this is my dream.” The dream came true, seen in the 2004 documentary Daughters of Everest.
Removed from the mountain for over a decade, Lhakpa is back in her home country to attempt her seventh summit climbing with her brother’s company.
Read the full story at Outside Magazine.