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“I Want to Show Human Capacity”

Nirmal “Nims” Purja (second from left) and his team reach the summit of Shishapangma, the 14th highest mountain in the world, Tibet, Oct. 29. Purja is the fi rst to ascend 14 of the world’s highest mountains in a record time of six months and six days. Photo by NIRMAL PURJA MBE/FACEBOOK.


Nirmal Purja, 36, on Oct. 29, completed “Project Possible,” setting a speed record for climbing the world’s 14 highest peaks. Each summit was at least 26,000 feet.

“MISSION ACHIEVED!” his team tweeted upon reaching the 26,340-foot peak of Mount Shishapangma in China. While other climbers accomplished the feat in years, Purja did so in six months and six days.

“I want to show human capacity,” he said. “I am not climbing to set any records. My competition is only with myself. I was born in a small village in Myagdi, Nepal. I want to prove that no matter what your background, you can do things considered impossible if you have the right thinking.”

In an interview with Agence France-Presse, Purja admitted that, when he told others what he was going to do, “Everyone was laughing at me and saying, ‘How will it be possible?’ ”

“It is about trusting your ability.”

This was adapted from an article by Cindy Boren in the Oct. 29 Washington Post.