Australian Man Climbs 7 Peaks in 7 Continents in Record Time

Steve Plain, 36, began his mission by climbing Mount Vinson in Antarctica on Jan. 16

An Australian mountaineer scaled Mount Everest on Monday, completing his quest to climb the highest peaks on all seven continents in record time, an expedition organizer said.

Steve Plain scaled Everest on Monday, 117 days after he began his mission in Antarctica.

Iswari Poudel of Himalayan Guides Nepal said he got a phone call from Mount Everest base camp saying that Plain along with two guides reached the 8,850-meter (29,035-foot) peak at around 7 a.m. and were descending.

The 36-year-old Plain, from Perth, began his mission by climbing Mount Vinson in Antarctica on Jan. 16. He followed that with Mount Aconcagua in South America, Mount Kilimanjaro in Africa, Mount Carstensz Pyramid in Papua New Guinea, which covers Australia and Oceania, Mount Elbrus in Europe and Denali in North America.

A surfing accident in 2014 nearly left Plain with multiple injuries but he recovered to continue mountain climbing.

Polish climber Janusz Kochanski had the previous record of fastest to climb the seven peaks, doing it in 126 days last year.

Several climbers were also heading to the summit on Monday, according to government official Gyanendra Shrestha.

A group of eight Nepalese Sherpa guides reached the summit on Sunday, fixing ropes and clearing paths for other climbers to begin their ascent to the peak.

Some 340 foreign climbers and many Nepalese Sherpa guides are attempting to climb Everest this month.

The popular spring season runs from March until the end of May, after which weather conditions on the mountain begin to deteriorate. There are only about a couple of days of windows of good weather on the highest part of the peak in May, when climbers rush to attempt their way to the summit.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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