B. Gangaamaa’s perilous climb up Mt. Everest

In 2005, the first Mongolian in history stood on the top of Mount Everest. The second conquest occurred six years later by a female climber, B. Gangaamaa. B. Gangaamaa first attempted to climb the Everest in 2007 as a member of a team led by Mongolia’s honored mountaineer G. Osokhbayar. However, she stopped climbing at 7,680 meters and returned due to health factors. Early this spring, she was involved with a Russian team called ‘Seven Summit’ and achieved her goal. A certificate was presented to her by the Mountain Climbing Union of the Tibet Autonomous Region of China that reads: “This is to certify that B. Gangaamaa has climbed to Jomolungma summit of the Himalayas and reached 8,848 meters above sea level at 6.30 am on May 22, 2011”. B. Gangaamaa was briefly interviewed during a press conference on June 2 at the Central Sports Palace in Ulaanbaatar.
-Every mountaineer has a dream to stand on the top of Mount Everest. You have become the first Mongolian woman that reached the peak of the Mount.
Every sportsperson wants to takepart in Olympic Games and become an Olympic winner. Likewise, every mountaineers dream and sincere wish is to climb Mount Everest.
I have studied and made preparations for the past decade. Previously, I was part of the team to climb this Mountain; but had no way to return when only I needed to climb 168 meter further.
It gave me an important lesson. As a result of persistent effort, I was able to reach the peak. I am very excited.
-How does the earth look from the summit?
-For two months, I climbed. I started the most important climb at 9pm on May 21, and continuously climbed during the night and reached the peak when it was dawn. I felt there was only one way to go down from Mount Everest when I saw it from the summit. The summit has very little space. When I looked down from the summit, there were clouds below and it was just dawning in the east. Also, I saw thunder in dark clouds in the west. It looked completely dark covering the world from the highest peak of the world. My guide followed me up. We spent about 10 minutes on the peak and it was impossible to stay longer because it has negative effects on human health. On the peak, I was photographed holding the State Flag of Mongolia. The Physical Culture and Sports Department gave me this State Flag that was raised when Mongolian athletes brought number of medals won during the Beijing Olympic Games. I raised it on the peak of highest mountain. I believe that I could invigorate the spirit of Mongolian sportspeople who will take part in 2012 London Olympic Games.

-Was your long travel full of adventures?
-Weather and your own physical condition are very important. This year, the weather was not so good. Therefore, the specific path for climbing stretched above 8,300 meters late in May. I climbed up carrying a total weight of 10 kg, including two 4-liter hydrogen balloons, three state flags and a hot pot of tea. Our team was comprised of one each from 7 countries such as Mongolia, Russia and Canada and two from the USA. I and one of two US sportspeople could stand on the peak and the others could not. I cannot express in words what I felt at the summit after so much effort. It was also difficult to go down safely from the summit. It was vital to go down fast because my hydrogen reserve was nearly depleted. During my climb up and going down, I saw many dead people who could not reach the peak. A mountaineer from UK, a member of our team, died. It was so sad seeing own team’s member die. Also, another mountaineer became blind. This year, 20 expeditions, comprising about 30 countries participated in the climbing.
During the press conference, Physical Culture and Sports Department and National Olympic Committee of Mongolia awarded B Gangaama with its top prize ‘Altan Od’ and Mongolia’s Mountain Sport Union awarded her with a medal for its 40th anniversary

source:'The Mongol Messenger'



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