First to scale 14 peaks without oxygen

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Gerlinde Kaltenbrunner. — Photo: AFP
Gerlinde Kaltenbrunner. — Photo: AFP

Austrian climber Gerlinde Kaltenbrunner became the first woman to conquer all 14 8,000-metre summits without artificial oxygen on Tuesday, when she reached the top of the K2, her team announced.

“Summit reached!! At 6:18 pm local time, Gerlinde reached the summit of K2,” Ms. Kaltenbrunner's husband and frequent climbing partner Ralf Dujmovits said in an update on her website.

Ms. Kaltenbrunner, 40, is the third woman only to climb all 14 highest summits but the first to do so without artificial oxygen.

She had already attempted the 8,611-metre K2, on the border between China and Pakistan, six times before but had to turn back each time before the summit.

Tuesday's victory marks the end of Ms. Kaltenbrunner's 8,000-metre-summit race that began in May 1998 with her escalation of Cho Oyu on the border between Nepal and Tibet.

The first person to scale the world's 14 highest peaks in 1986 was the Italian Reinhold Messner. — AFP



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