GHT Blog

Born to climb

March 25, 2016

Climbing Nepal“The journey to the mountains isn’t easy but it gives me that moment to pause momentarily, and take pleasure in what you see, feel and experience. Nature’s creations are the best way to relate to heaven.” – Pasang Lhamu Sherpa Akita

Pasang Lhamu Sherpa Akita grew up in a remote Sherpa village in the Khumbu region, in the shadows of the tallest mountains in the world. Due to its location mountaineering presents one of the few career opportunities for people growing up there. The fact that the mountaineering community in Nepal is largely dominated by men didn’t deter Pasang. At the age of 18 she was scaling impressively high peaks and as Nepal’s first female mountaineering instructor she was soon encouraging other budding climbers to follow in her footsteps. A few years later she was on the way to become one of the rising stars in mountaineering.

At age 22 she summited Everest for the first time and 7 years later, in 2014, Pasang and two other Nepali climbers, Maya Sherpa and Dawa Yangzum Sherpa, became the first Nepali women to summit K2, the second highest mountain in the world and one of the most dangerous and technically challenging peaks on the planet.
Most recently however, she has been making headlines as the winner of National Geographic People’s Choice Award for Adventurer of the Year.

climb Nepal

Photograph by Mingma Dorjee Sherpa as seen in National Geographic.

While her ambitions have long belonged to the mountains. Her heart is committed to the Nepali people.

Those who know her well describe her as one of the strongest and most experienced female climbers in Nepal but also someone who has a big humanitarian commitment. This was particularly noted in her efforts in the aftermath of the April 2015 earthquake where she was involved in the rescue missions at Everest Base Camp and later aided in the relief efforts in the hardest hit villages in remote areas throughout Nepal.

Her team’s approach was unique and effective; employing porters to carry emergency supplies up to remote villages and repairing trails as they went along. This provided an income for porters who were out of work after the earthquake, while at the same helping to rebuild the trails for the fall trekking season.

Trekking tourism is a vital part of Nepal’s economy, providing livelihoods for thousands of mountain communities. The earthquake and the subsequent drop in visitor numbers to the country have had a negative impact across many industries. To encourage people to come back, Pasang has shared her story about what the Great Himalaya Trails in Nepal mean to her, her “MyGHT story”. Pasang and the GHT hope that hers and many other stories will inspire and encourage others to visit Nepal and create their own unique experience.

The photo she has selected to share was taken from the Lamjung district with Mount Manaslu, the 8th highest mountain in the world, towering in the background. Pasang praises this region as offering the most exciting trekking options in Nepal and highly endorses the value of the Manaslu region to the country’s economy and particularly to the communities living there. “It’s emerging as one of the best trekking options in Nepal. I’m sure visitors will love the stunning landscapes and the treks leading to them.”

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