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EverestHistory.com: Jason Edwards


Jason Edwards, AMGA Certified Alpine Guide, completed the Seven Summits (Koscuiszko version) on April 1, 2002. "Our small team of three climbers successfully climbed Mt. Kosciusko (7,301') twice on April 1 and 2, the highest peak in Australia. We left each morning about 4:30am for the summit, and walked up the open grassy slopes in the most awesome moonlight--without the need of a light.

It was a still night, with virtually no wind, and we climbed steadily until the sun rose. At that time we were on the high alpine slopes of the peak, wide open areas of rolling mountains with small rocky outcroppings. We watched the red light of the sun paint the slopes with alpenglow. Walking in shorts and t-shirts, we took our time to reach the broad summit and celebrated with champagne, cheers and a lot of photographs to mark the moment.

I flew the American, Australian, and Nepali flags, as I've done on many of the other peaks (the flags represented the highest and lowest of the Seven Summits--and the American flag, well...). The walk down was straightforward, except for a run-in with the deadly "brown snake," which I just about stepped on as we trod down the mountain!"

"One other notable event...on the way up the second time, we were near a forest and had a brief encounter with a male wombat. This little guy weighs in at around 120 pounds and had long claws...exactly what you don't want to run into at night! All that excitement added quite nicely though, to the overall experience. The "hike" was 13 miles or 21k round-trip, and took about 3-4 hours from Thredbo, the ski area at the base of the mountain, to the summit. It took about 2 hours to return to the village. The hardest part of the trip was the 40 hours of flying and driving time! "Kos" was my last summit in my recent quest to climb the highest of the Seven continental summits: North America (McKinley 20,320'), South America (Aconcagua 23,000'), Asia (Everest 29,035'), Europe (Elbrus, in Russia 18,501'), Africa (Kilimanjaro 19,370'), Antarctica (Vinson 16,000'+), and lastly, Australia (Kosciusko 7,301').

I never really thought about completing the Seven Summits until our success on Everest last spring. After that, it seemed like it could happen, Elbrus in Russia went well and we reached the summit in a snow storm, and with our luck on Vinson in December, a quick trip to Australia seemed to be in the cards. Not sure what it all means to have climbed the "Seven Summits," but it's nice to have completed the goal. Kinda weird now, not having "the big goal" standing in front of me like it's been there for years (since seventh grade!). I'm sure there will be "something" to fill the void soon. Thanks much for your interest and support!" Jason Edwards Check out the EverestNews.com coverage of Jason's 2001 Mt. Everest Expedition

First summit dates of each peak and partial list of partners:

McKinley, West Buttress Route: 7/17/83 Joe Horiskey & Team

Aconcagua, Polish Glacier (traverse): 1/17/90 Kevin Slotterbeck & Team

Kilimanjaro, Machame: 8/10/96 Jodie Edwards & Team

Everest, South Col: 5/24/01 Maximo Henostroza, Mountain Experience Team, & Sherpas

Elbrus, Normal Route: 8/10/01 Kevin Slotterbeck & Team

Vinson, Branscomb Glacier: 12/10/01  Mark Ursino & Team

Koscuiszko, Walked up from Thredbo: 4/1/02 Mark Ursino & Team

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