What all things would you expect a nine-year-old to do? Play, learn, have fun…….?
Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, at 19,341 feet above sea level, is the highest peak in Africa. It is also fondly called ‘Simbum ToTo’ (Little Simba). While most of us may still be discovering Mount Kilimanjaro on the map, Advait Bhartia, recently scaled the highest free-standing mountain in the world. The trek was organized by Pune-based adventure and trekking company Adventure Pulse.
- To successfully accomplish the hike, the nine-year-old from Pune took the most recommended Machame route that begins at the southern base of the mountain
- He added that thin air, reducing atmospheric oxygen by approximately 50 per cent, and sub-zero temperatures ranging between minus 21 and 25 degrees celsius at higher altitudes were some of the challenges he faced during his expedition
- Advait, who also successfully trekked to the Everest base camp as a boy of six in 2016, finished the summit in seven days
- Advait reached the top of the mountain on July 31, under the supervision of his expedition leader Samir Patham
- When he was summiting the Everest Base Camp, he was made to live in wooden houses but during the Kilimanjaro trek, they stayed in tents which was a good experience being exposed to snow and the surroundings
This trek was really difficult but fun at the same time. I could have completed the trek faster but the mountains were very beautiful and I took a lot of breaks to take in the beauty
According to his mother Payal Bhartia, Advait underwent stringent training over a period of two months to gear up for the climb
His routine included swimming for an hour, cardiovascular training like playing football, cricket and tennis in the second hour and climbing 100 floors and practising Parkour (military obstacle training) was a regular part of the training during the third hour.
Payal, who accompanied her son during the hike, had to cut short her journey by 1000 ft on the way up as she was unable to acclimatise to the increasing altitude.
I am very proud of Advait and his dedication towards completing this trek. On the last day, Advait got emotional and he individually thanked the porters, the tent pitchers and the catering team for all their efforts.
Treks are generally classified based on the following criteria:
- Altitude gained every day of the trek
- Highest altitude of the trek
- Length of trek each day
- Gradients during the trek
- Nature of terrain (grass, even path, gravel, stones, boulders or slippery)
- Temperature during the trek, snow/ice on the trail, camp site locations
- Availability of water
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