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Top female altitude climbers on summit push
image story



May 18, 2004 17: 26 EST
The top female climbers in the world were Wanda Rutkiewicz with 8 summits of 8,000+ meters and Chantal Mauduit with 6; both ladies, however, perished in the mountains.

Christine Boskoff (US) together with Spanish Edurne Pasaban both have six 8000ers and are, with that, the worlds top female climbers alive today.

Italian Nives Meroi (together with Polish Anna Czerwinska) has 5 8,000ers. Where's Nives now? On Lhotse, going for 6th 8000+ mountain next week!

If Nives makes it, that's going to put her in a three way tie for the top spot, with Edurne and Christine.

If Christine nabs Everest, even though it will be a repeat, it will put her on the top of the three way tie - with 7 8000+ summits on 6 mountains.
But after Lhotse, Nives is off to K2. That's where Edurne Pasaban too is heading...and maybe a 7th 8000er for them both.

And then there is Gerlinde Kaltenbrunner, the Austrian lady climber who is considered by many to be the best female climber in the world right now. She goes after some tough 8,000ers.

Where's SHE now? Gerlinde expects to summit Shisha Pangma, her fifth, by the end of this month!

Her team is doing a tough route on Shisha (the South Face), and then she is off to Annapurna. If she gets both she will have 6 tough 8,000ers under her belt, and could go up to the top of the list with the most difficult mountains already out of the way.

By the end of May three women may be jumping to the top of a short list. By the end of this summer AdventureStats might have a lot of ladies on their hands.

Bagging six or more eight-thousanders is mostly a guys game; going down the list of names is like reading the roster at a bachelor party. Female climbers with six or more 8,000 meter mountains –Yeah, it’s a short list.

And at the top of that list is Wanda Rutkiewicz followed by Chantal Mauduit; both were taken by the mountains. In fact no K2 female summiteers are alive today.

Three down, however, is Christine Boskoff of Mountain Madness. She’s bagged Broad Peak, Cho Oyu, Lhotse, G II, Everest and Shisha Pangma Main.

With 5 8,000ers is Nives Meroi who, according to Planet Mountain, was recently forced to return to Lhotse BC to sit out a storm is looking at the 17th-22nd of May for her 6th 8,000er. She already has Nanga Parbat, Shisha Pangma (Central summit), Cho Oyu, G II, G I and Broad Peak. Nives typically travels light, climbing alpine-style, without oxygen or high-altitude porters.

Gerlinde Kaltenbrunner, has Makalu, Manaslu, Nanga Parbat and Cho Oyu. She hopes to summit Shisha Pangma by the end of this month as well and then she is off to Annapurna.

Edurne Pasaban with 6 8,000ers will also be going to K2 this summer and Anna Czerwinska with 5 is taking the season off.

Image of Wanda Rutkiewicz, Liliane Barrard, Barbara Kozłowska on Broad Peak 1985 courtesy of Stéfane Schaffter and nyka.pl.

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