The Oldest and the Youngest

Last week, amongst the queue of people lining up to climb Mount Everest, was an 80 year old and a 16 year old. And because an 80 year old has done it, now an 81 year old planning to do one more.

Yuichiro Muira, 80, from Japan, 23rd May, 2013

“I’ve made it! I never imagined I could make it to the top of Mount Everest at age 80. This is the world’s best feeling, although I’m totally exhausted. Even at 80, I can still do quite well.

Muira has had four heart operations so far. And this is his third summit climb. 2003, 2008 and now 2013. 5 years ago, aged 75, he reached the peak on 26 May, 2008. He was then the oldest man to climb Everest. His record stood for one day.

On May 27th, 2008, Min Bahadur Sherchan, then 76 years old, reached the summit.

As of today, Muira is the oldest man. But Sherchan is already in base camp and planning his next attempt.

“Our team leader has just arrived back at base camp and we are holding a team meeting on when exactly I will head up to the summit,” Sherchan said in a phone call. “I am fine and in good health. I am ready to take up the challenge. Our plan is to reach the summit within one week.”

One week earlier, 16 year old Nameirakpam Chinkheinganba, from Manipur, became for a few days the youngest Indian to climb Mt Everest. Apparently, in that queue behind him was a 15 year old Raghav Juneja. Here’s the story.

At 5.15am Nepal time (5am IST) I finally fulfilled my dream.

I looked around and took in the view; I could see everything — from the Camps to Khumbu Glacier and the paths that I took.

It was overwhelming; I started crying. There I was, on top of Mt Everest. I had overcome the one thing that I had feared most. When I started my ascent, my family went on a fast to pray for my safe return. Many people have lost their lives while attempting this — I was scared too. Till that moment I wasn’t sure I’d be able to make it.

Now here I was on top of the world. I wasn’t scared anymore.

And a picture of Mount Everest.

Mount Everest at Dusk. Photo taken and belongs to Larry He, taken from his Flickr stream

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