Home > News

Visually Impaired Canadian Summits Annapurna

Jill Wheatley has now climbed seven of the world's 14 highest mountains, including K2

Jill Wheatley was one of several climbers who reached the summit of Annapurna, the tenth highest mountain in the world at 8,091 metres, this weekend. Among the others to the summit was Asma Al Thani, the princess of Qatar, guided by Nirmal Purja. Wheatley climbed with Pemba Chhiri Sherpa of Imagine Nepal, they summited at 3:35 p.m. on April 15.

Wheatley grew up in Ontario and later moved to Bavaria, Germany, to teach physical education. During one of her classes, she was hit in the head with a baseball, suffered a traumatic brain injury and lost  70 per cent of her vision in one eye and 100 per cent in the other. She spent 26 months in seven different hospitals.

Ten months after leaving the hospital, she travelled to Nepal and decided to start Project Vision 8000 in the hopes of climbing the 14 peaks over 8,000 metres. She’s now climbed K2 (8,611 m), Kanchenjunga (8,586 m), Makalu (8,463 m), Dhaulagiri (8,167 m), Manaslu (8,163 m), Broad Peak (8,047 m) and Annapurna (8091 m).

Wheatley will continue to climb with Imagine Nepal this spring as she now hopes to summit Everest and Lhotse.