Trans woman aims to make history by climbing Mount Everest

A 35-year-old from Nepal hopes to be the first known trans person to reach the peak, aiming to prove LGBTI people can conquer any challenge

Trans woman aims to make history by climbing Mount Everest
12 March 2014

A woman is hoping to make history by becoming the first known trans person to climb Mount Everest.

Manoj Shahi Monika, a 35-year-old from Nepal who describes herself as third gender, has lived in the shadows of the mountain’s dizzy heights for her whole life.

But now she is determined to conquer the world’s tallest peak to give a message to the world that LGBTI people can take on any challenge.

‘I cannot afford to miss the opportunity to make the record for climbing Everest as a member from the LGBT community,’ she said, who wants to be listed in the Guinness Book of Records.

Monika is dreaming to flutter the national flag together with a banner of Blue Diamond Society, a LGBT rights group in Nepal, on top of the mountain.

Several attempts have been made by trans people before to make the climb, with a couple of famous examples.

Over 60 years ago, a trans reporter at The Times Jan Morris in 1953 was the first to break the news of the first successful ascent of Mount Everest.

She was partway up the mountain and had to climb down in dangerous dusk to relay the message to London that a Sherpa and a New Zealander had conquered the peak.

And 19 years prior, British climber Maurice Wilson attempted and possibly reached the peak before she died.

We know very little about her ascent, but some have argued that she was trans. At the time, she was seen as mad, eccentric and incapable of making it to the top.

The climb, seen as one of the most desirable peaks in the world for mountaineers, has claimed the lives of over 200 people.

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