‘Queen among the Sherpas,’ is how mountaineer Dave Watson described the Luckpa Sherpa in Grayson Schaffer’s 2016 the outside A special story about a Nepalese mountaineer.
While the Lhakpa may not be a true king in its homeland, it is a monarchy among mountaineers on Mount Everest. The 48-year-old completed her 10th trip to Egypt on Thursday 29,035 ft Peak, breaking the record for the most successful Everest climb by a woman.
A member of the Lhakpa crew confirmed it the outside Which I summarized at about 6:30 AM, after 24 hours of continuous ascent. After ascending, the Lhakpa descended to Camp Two, at 20,997 feet. Plan to climb to Base Camp on Friday morning if the weather continues.
Lhakpa’s tenth summit comes 22 years after its first. In 2000, she became the first Nepalese woman to climb and descend Mount Everest alive, seven years after her compatriot, Pasang Lamu Sherpa, died during an attempt. Lhakpa went on to become a fixture on the mountain in the early stints, shortening five times between 2001 and 2006.
She told the BBC in 2016. “I climbed Everest eight months after my first daughter was born. I climbed when I was two months pregnant with my little girl. It wasn’t easy, but I managed it well.”
She was often overlooked by the outside media as well as her countrymen, who focused on the achievements of male Sherpa mountaineers.
This dynamic has changed somewhat in the past decade, as Lhakpa began speaking to more Western reporters after her divorce from Romanian mountaineer George Dijmarescu. She has opened up about her childhood in Nepal and about being a victim of domestic violence at the hands of her husband.
“It was a good relationship before I had kids, but as soon as I had kids, he started hitting me,” she told the court in 2015.
Lhakpa Sherpa grew up with 11 siblings and did not go to school. Her family has helped climbers in the Makalu Himalayan region, and her brother, Mingma Gelu Sherpa, is now the Managing Director of Seven Summit Club. Lhakpa started working as a porter in the mountains at the age of 15.
She told Shaffer in 2016. “I’m a totally different kind of girl. I have seven sisters, but my mom says I mostly look like a boy.” Whatever a boy does, you do. You never do girl things. Mostly you do boy things.”
Luckpa now lives in West Hartford, Connecticut, where she works at the local Whole Foods and is the mother of two teenage daughters. She completed her expedition to Everest this season without the help of sponsors for climbing equipment. And yet she wasn’t alone — Lhakpa was put off by a film crew from Bay Area-based production company Avocados and Coconuts, which has yet to receive the title of her next Rise movie.
Her youngest daughter, Shiny, and her niece, Jangmu, are waiting for her at Base Camp. A recent video on her Instagram showed Lhakpa and Shiny performing a ceremony amidst the tents and snowfall.
“We are doing a pooja for my 10th summit and for all the other mountaineers climbing Everest this year,” she wrote. “Thank you for supporting us during this journey.”