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Maha woman climbs Maha Everest

Saturday, April 29, 2017
By Steffy Thevar

I successfully led two visually challenged trekkers from Adventures Beyond Barriers Foundation up to the Everest Base Camp.

Aparna Prabhudesai was once told that she will never be able to walk again having succumbed to a cartilage injury, would you ever imagine such a woman to climb the Mt. Everest? She has managed to enthral everyone by not only climbing the mighty Everest but has also become the first woman to summit the Mt. Everest from the North Side. Surpassing all difficulties and negativity Aparna gives every human being an example of Chivalry and Hope.

Despite the highs and lows, the 47-year-old Aparna gathered the courage to become a commendable entrepreneur and a facilitator by profession. Interestingly, she is also an avid marathoner, a vocational mountaineer and a community worker by choice. “I am a certified Leadership and Behavioural coach, an NLP master trainer and an OD consultant”, she said.

The Triund expedition ignited her passion for mountains and since then there has been no looking back. She has been on the trail of expeditions to Laka Glacier, Kareri lake, Chaddar Trek and the Zanskar Valley. She has also climbed up to the Everest Base Camp (5,364m) twice, once as a participant in May 2014 and once as a team leader in April/May 2016. While sharing her experience with The Afternoon D&C Aparna said, “In the last instance, I successfully led two visually challenged trekkers from Adventures Beyond Barriers Foundation (ABBF - a not-for-profit organisation that promotes mainstream sports for persons with disability).”

The acknowledgement came that the brave lady had achieved the title of being the First woman from Maharashtra to have flagged off the Mt. Everest from the Northern Base was confirmed to her family by Atal Bihari Vajpayee Institute of Mountaineering and Allied Sports (ABVIMAS), Manali.

Aparna, who is presently on an expedition, in a conversation with The Afternoon D&C via Skype said, “The North is definitely the most difficult side and I have travel companions from other Himalayan Countries like Nepal, China and Russia. Getting documents cleared from China was another difficult task. However, now I am enjoying the trip and it is definitely a trip to remember.”

Climbing Mt Everest is not just a tedious task but also a costly one. Aanchal, Aparna's daughter who is looking after her mother's financial needs says, “It takes almost Rs 25-30 lakh and so I am handling my mother's finances. When she gave us the news we did not believe in the beginning but when she started working hard every single day three years back we had a feeling that she was determined to do this.”

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