Teen mountaineer completes Seven Summits

Jordan Romero completes the Seven Summits15 year old mountaineer Jordan Romero has completed his quest to climb the Seven Summits, the tallest mountain on each of the seven continents, and in the process became the youngest person to achieve that feat. On Christmas Eve, Jordan, along with father Paul and stepmother Karen, reached the top of the 16,050-foot Mt. Vinson in Antarctica, the last of the mountains on his list.

Jordan first dreamed of climbing the Seven Summits after seeing a mural on the iconic peaks in his grade school. He was just ten years old at the time. Later that year, he would bag his first summit, climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro, the tallest peak in Africa. He would follow that up with successful climbs of Kosciuszko (Australia), Elbrus (Europe), Aconcagua (South America), Denali (North America), and Carstensz Pyramid (Oceania).

But it was his successful summit of Mt. Everest, the tallest mountain on the planet, that grabbed headlines around the globe. At the time, Jordan was just 13 years old, and his bold expedition sparked debate in the mountaineering community over how young is too young to climb the world’s biggest mountains.

The logistics and location of climbing in Antarctica forced Jordan to wait another year and a half to climb Mt. Vinson, but now he has claimed that summit too. Last Friday, the teenager, along with his parents, moved up to High Camp on that mountain, and on Saturday – Christmas Eve – they continued on to the summit itself. Weather conditions, as you would expect, were challenging, with high winds and sub-zero temperatures dogging them all the way. But int he end, they topped out at about 1 PM local time. They then safely descended back down the mountain and skied back to Base Camp, where they enjoyed Christmas dinner.

Congratulations to Jordan on completing his quest to climb the Seven Summits. Well done young man!

[Photo courtesy of Jordan Romero]

Teen climber Jordan Romero prepares for final Seven Summit

Jordan Romero will take on Mt. Vinson nextWhen we last checked in with teenage mountaineer Jordan Romero, he had just finished climbing Mt. Everest and in the process, setting a record for the youngest person to accomplish that feat. Jordan was 13 at the time, and razor focused on becoming the youngest person to reach the top of the highest mountain on each of the seven continents. Now, a year and a half later, with one mountain still on his list, he is preparing to achieve that goal as well.

Next week, Jordan, now age 15, will leave the U.S. for Antarctica, where he and his father Paul, along with step-mom Karen Lundgren, will attempt to climb Mt. Vinson, the highest peak on the continent. If all goes according to schedule, he’ll arrive in the Antarctic on December 16 and start the climb the following day. Over the following two weeks, Jordan and his team will face brutally cold temperatures, high winds, and the threat of avalanches, all for the chance to stand on the summit of the 16,050-foot mountain. If successful, Romero will become the youngest person to complete the Seven Summits.

Jordan first conceived of the idea of climbing the highest mountains on each of the continents when he saw a mural of the Seven Summits in his elementary school. That was back in 2005, when he was just nine years old. The following year he was off to Africa, where he trekked to the top of Kilimanjaro, which only fueled his desire to climb those mountains. In 2007 he checked Kosciuszko (Australia), Elbrus (Europe), and Aconcagua (South America) off of his list, and summitted Denali (North America) and Carstensz Pyramid (Oceania) in 2008 and 2009 respectively.

Last year, he gained recognition worldwide for his successful climb of Everest, igniting a debate in the mountaineering community in the process. Many climbers began to wonder just how young was too young, which later prompted Nepal and China to set strict age limits, requiring Everest climbers to be at least 18 years old. The move was applauded by many, although some felt that Jordan was proof that young climbers could do well on the world’s tallest mountains.

[Photo courtesy of Jordan Romero]

17-year old climber nabs Seven Summits

17-year old mountaineer Johnny Collinson of Snowbird, Utah has become the youngest person to climb all the Seven Summits by topping out on Mt. Vinson, the highest peak in Antarctica. The teenager reached the summit, which stands at 16,067 feet, on Monday, completing a quest to reach the top of the highest peaks on all seven continents.

Collinson is still in Antarctica and hasn’t posted to his website yet, but he was climbing with a team led by guide service Mountain Madness who updated their own blog with the news of the team’s success. Johnny was joined on the summit by three other climbers as well as well known guide Willie Benegas. And as if reaching the summit wasn’t enough, the young man elected to ski back down the mountain to their campsite.

The Seven Summits have become one of the top goals for climbers and adventurers around the planet. Besides Vinson, the peaks consist of Kilimanjaro in Africa (19,340 feet), Elbrus in Europe (18,510 feet), Denali in North America (20,320 feet), Aconcagua in South America (22,841 feet), Carstenz Pyramid in Oceana (16,023 feet), and of course Everest in Asia (29,029 feet). That tallest mountain in Australia is Kosciusko, but that peak is just 7310 feet in height and is a simple walk-up, so the list was expanded to include the taller and more technically challenging Carstenz Pyramid, located in Indonesia. Most of the climbers who complete the Seven Summits actually go for all eight peaks just to cover their bases.

Collinson may not hold on to this record for long. 13-year old Jordan Romero will be going to Everest this spring to make his bid on that mountain, and if successful there, he’ll head to Vinson in the fall as well. If he nabs both summits, he’ll be just 14-years old when he is done.

12-Year-Old Climber Sets Sights on Seven Summits

The Seven Summits are the tallest mountains on each of the seven continents, and climbing them all is considered one of the premiere achievements for climbers and adventurers the world over. The concept originated with a man named Dick Bass who was the first to successfully gain this achievement back in 1985, and since then, dozens of other climbers have followed in his footsteps.

Currently, the youngest person to have climbed the Seven Summits is Samantha Larson, who accomplished the feat at the age of 18 when she topped out on Mt. Everest back in 2007. But there is another young climber looking to snatch that record, as 12-year-old Jordan Romero closes in on the mark.
Jordan, who was recently interviewed by Outside Online, caught the climbing bug when he reached the summit of Mt. Kilimanjaro, the highest peak in Africa, at the age of 10. After that, he made it a goal to go after the remaining summits as well, and has now successfully reached the top of Elbrus (Europe), Aconcagua (South America), Denali (North America), and Kosciuszko (Australia). That leaves Mt. Vinson in Antarctica, and Everest in Asia, as the two remaining mountains in the traditional Seven Summits. This summer, Romero will climb a mountain called Carstensz Pyramid in Papua New Guinea. Carstensz is considered the tallest mountain in Oceania, often replacing Kosciusko as the seventh summit. Jordan’s covering all his bases and climbing both, making this a Seven Summits plus One.

If everything goes as planned, the young climber will be on Everest by the time he’s 16, and finishing off his quest. Jordan says that the most difficult challenge is actually fund raising, and he estimates he’ll need roughly $180,000 to complete the Seven Summits, the bulk of which will be used on Everest and Vinson. Good luck Jordan!