Hilaree Nelson Makes “Adventurer of the Year”

Jason Roberts, Journalism Student

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The world’s first Women’s Summit skier, Hilaree Nelson on Mt. Lhotse, located next to Mt. Everest, completed her run down the mountain in two and a half weeks.  She has shared her struggles along the way is a great role model for someone wanting to accomplish the seemingly impossible. She and Jim Morrison were the first Americans to ski down the summit of the mountain and she was the first female to ski the summit as well.  Afterwards, she was placed on National Geographic’s 2018 “Adventurers of the Year” list. They tried using no oxygen to traverse the mountain, as it would allow Nelson to set yet another record, but they only made it to 8,200/8516 meters before having to use the oxygen masks to continue without slowing down. Ascending was hard for them because of the ever-changing ice and snow. Nelson described the snow and ice as “It would go from rock hard ice to a waist high fluff snow in the matter of seconds, it’s the way it was when we were passing through the Khumbu icefall it took us 12 hours to get through due to the changing conditions in the pass.”  Nelson didn’t use safety nets as well as she didn’t feel they were necessary to the current state of the mountain. When she and Nelson got to the top the wind was blowing at around 37 kilometers an hour and were only predicted to go higher until October 12th as the next day was forecasted at 100 kilometers an hour, so she says they had to make it on September 30th.  When they went down the mountain they stayed close together in case something happened to the other, but they made it down the mountain the same day and broke many records on the mountain with only 4 people making it to the top.  Overall, she wants it to be an inspiration to others to try to step out of their comfort zone and push the limits of themselves to be the next role model to others.