Andhra climber summits Africa’s highest mountain

Friday, November 12, 2010

HYDERABAD - A climber from Andhra Pradesh has reached the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, Africa’s highest mountain and world’s highest free standing mountain, he said Friday.

Bachinepally Shekhar Babu, who works as manager (adventure and eco-tourism), in Andhra Pradesh Tourism Development Corporation Ltd (APTDC), reached the summit in four days.

Shekhar, who returned here Friday, told reporters that the climb started from Machame Gate Hut on Oct 29 and he reached the top on Nov 1. He was accompanied by an English-speaking Tanzanian guide.

“Unlike the Mount Everest I enjoyed climbing Kilimanjaro. It was too hot in the day time and very cold in the night,” Shekhar said.

Kilimanjaro is located in northeast Tanzania, near the Kenya border. It is an extinct volcano, and is one of the most massive in the world. It towers above the surrounding arid plains, and 2.5 square miles of its surface are over 19,344 feet.

The 28-year-old Shekhar is also the first Indian to have climbed Mt Everest as an individual, only with a Sherpa and not as part of any team and without any institutional support.

He is also the first Indian to have climbed two highest peaks - above 8,000-metres in height - within a record time of four months. He reached the summit of Mt. Everest June 5, 2007 and in October he scaled Cho Oyu and Shishapangma, also known as Gosaitan.

Hailing from Nalgonda district, Sekhar has now set his eyes on Manaslu peak in the Nepal Himalayas. Manaslu is the high peak of the Gurkha massif, and is the eighth highest mountain in the world.

Filed under: Sports

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