As we’ve mentioned before, the fall climbing season in the Himalaya is now in full swing, with teams already in Base Camp on Manaslu, Dhaulagiri, and other big mountains throughout Nepal. Many of those climbers are using the post-monsoon climbing season to test their gear and gain valuable experience prior with the idea of heading to Everest next spring. One of them is a double amputee, who currently has his sights set on Mera Peak.
According to the Himalaya Times, 37-year old Hari Budha Magar is a soldier who served with the British Gurka’s for more than 15 years before being medically discharged in 2014, four years after he lost both of his legs while serving in Afghanistan. Since then, he has set a goal for himself to reach the summit of Everest, and is now starting down that path with an expedition to Mera Peak.
The 6476-meter (21,246 ft) mountain is often used as a train ground for those looking to climb larger peaks in the Himalaya. While it is a non-technical climb, it is still very demanding, particularly due to its altitude. Located in the Khumbu region, not far from Everest, Magar should catch glimpses of his ultimate goal throughout the trek.
The father of three says that he is undertaking this expedition to demonstrate that physically handicapped people can still accomplish quite a bit. He did some training in the Mont Blanc region earlier in the summer, but has also pursued such other adventurous activities as rock climbing, skydiving, kayaking, and skiing.
Magar and his team of five are scheduled to fly to Lukla in the Khumbu Valley today. From there, they’ll start the trek to Mera Peak and plan on spending about three weeks in the region attempting to reach the summit. If successful, he’ll be the first double amputee above the knee to accomplish that feat. After that, he’ll begin thinking more seriously about his plans for Everest.