Sport Other Sports Uphill all the way, but SA climber’s ‘seven-seven’ is a world first

Uphill all the way, but SA climber’s ‘seven-seven’ is a world first

Katie Sarah hauls herself toward the summit of Everest -- just one of the 14 peaks she conquered. AAP
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Adelaide climber Katie Sarah has joined an elite group, becoming only the eighth person and the first woman to conquer the “seven-seven” – the highest peaks and volcanic mountains on each of the seven continents.

Sarah has just returned from Antarctica where she successfully reached the 4285-meter summit of Mount Sidley, braving temperatures of 30C below zero.

Katie Sarah is the first woman to achieve the feat.

That rounded out the last of the “seven-seven”, a feat only completed before by seven others, all men.

“Camping in the crater of the volcano in Antarctica, almost 1000km away from any other humans, was extraordinary,” she said of this most recent climb.

“Knowing that fewer than 40 people have ever climbed it in the millions of years it has existed is quite awe-inspiring.”

The 49-year-old completed five of the seven volcano climbs within the past 12 months and said all were special and all had allowed her to travel to some of the world’s most remote and exciting places.

“Oddly, Iran (Mt Damavand) was a highlight with the people very friendly and welcoming,” she said.

“I’ve always had a fascination with volcanoes. I just think they are such stunning and raw parts of our planet.”

The seven volcanic summits

Ojos del Salado (South America)
Kilimanjaro (Africa)
Elbrus (Europe)
Pico de Orizaba (North America)
Damavand (Asia)
Giluwe (Oceania/Australia)
Mt Sidley (Antarctica)

The seven summits

Everest (Asia)
Aconcagua (South America)
McKinley (North America)
Kilimanjaro (Africa)
Elbrus (Europe)
Vinson (Antarctica)
Kosciuszko (Australia/Oceania)