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Pasang and Dawa Sherpa are first Nepali women up Annapurna without 02

They were part of a group of six Nepali women who made history on April 16

Pasang Lhamu Sherpa Akita and Dawa Yangzum Sherpa have become the first two Nepali women to reach the summit of Annapurna (8,091 m) without using supplementary oxygen. They were part of a record-setting number of people who reached the summer last week.

We reported last week, that six Nepali climbers became the first women from their nation to reach the summit when they topped-out with 61 others. The other four women were Purnima Shrestha, Dabhuti Sherpa, Sharmila Tamang and Maya Sherpa. The 10th largest mountain’s busiest summit day previous to 2021 was in 2016 when 32 climbers summited.

Once a rarely visited 8,000-metre-plus peak, because of its difficult route and avalanche-prone slopes, it’s become a popular Himalayan objective over the past few years. Good weather, fixed ropes and oxygen have increased the number of climbers reaching the top. Only one Canadian, Don Bowie from Ontario, has climbed it. The first women to summit did so in 1978 when Americans, Vera Komarkova and Irene Miller.

Pasang Lhamu Sherpa Akita was named National Geographic’s People’s Choice Adventurer of the Year in 2016. Ten years before that, she made the first female ascent of Nangpai Gosum (7,351 m). In 2014, Maya Sherpa, Dawa Yangzum Sherpa and Pasang Lhamu Sherpa Akita became the first Nepali women to climb K2 (8,611 m). And Dawa was the first Nepali woman to summit Makalu (8,485 m).