Waltzing Mathilda

Continent #7, mountain #6 here I come!  Funny, but I don’t feel like I’ve come back to the 21st century yet after my return from Nepal last month but here I go again.  This continent will be a true trip and Brooke and I are treating it accordingly.  I leave from Denver tomorrow evening, arrive in Sydney on Wednesday and plan to climb by week’s end.  Then we’re off!  Our agenda is diverse, unstructured and very exciting.  We are off for the outback.  We have plans to drive on the left in a rented car with a map and a true sense of adventure.  Afterall, what would one expect from two women about to embark on Everest next spring and having been in Antarctica last winter?  Our adventuresome streak is getting more difficult to quench and so we are going to this continent with just that in mind.  We plan to scuba dive, take surfing lessons, although Brooke is a California girl and already an accomplished surfer.  Me?  Well I’ll just have to let you know about that one. A hot air balloon ride in New Zealand and climbing anywhere and everywhere the landscape moves us.  I understand the country is gorgeous and I am anxious to take it all in not missing one detail.

I return in Dec. to my new home just north of Boston for the holidays before heading back to my Boulder apartment where I will be training for three months.  I will also be heading to Bend, OR to train a very different way; crossing ladders with full gear, crampons and loaded backpack to simulate the Khumbu Ice Falls just outside base camp on Everest. I understand the first few crossings can be intimidating practice on ladders is an advantage.  I’m starting to wonder what I will do with myself when I run out of mountains?  Give me time, I am certain to come up with something.

To “my” kids at the Donald McKay School are you ready for our next adventure?  I’ve got the satellite phone ready to go!

I’ll check in from ‘down under’ soon.  In the meantime……..

Climb On!!!

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About Wendy Booker

In June of 1998, this 55 year old mother of three was diagnosed with relapsing-remitting MS after experiencing balance problems, blurred vision and numbness on her left side. When first diagnosed, Wendy was devastated. But it took very little time for her to transform anguish into inspiration. She immediately turned her hobby of casual running into a continuous pursuit and has now completed nine marathons.

Mountain climbing became the next conquest. Wendy learned about a team of mountain climbers with Multiple Sclerosis who were attempting to climb Mt. McKinley (Denali) in Alaska. With no previous climbing experience, she dedicated a year to hard training and set off with them in 2002. Although weather conditions prohibited the team from completing, Wendy attempted the summit again in 2004 on her own and she succeeded!

The feeling of accomplishment she experienced propelled her next aspiration: to climb the highest mountain on each continent. Just five years later, Wendy Booker has successfully reached the top of six of The Seven Summits – Mt. Kilimanjaro, Mt. McKinley, Mt. Elbrus, Mt. Aconcagua, Mt. Vinson Massif and Mt. Kosciuszko. Mt. Everest, the highest mountain on earth, still awaits for 2010.


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