Kami Rita Sherpa grew up in Thame, Nepal, surrounded by some of the highest mountains in the world.
Climbing is in his blood. His father was one of the first professional Sherpa guides to usher international climbers to the summit in the 1950s. By the time he was 12, Kami Rita was carrying gear and equipment for climbers to base camp at 17,598 feet above sea level.
Located in the Himalayas mountain range, the peak of Mount Everest is 29,032 feet above sea level, making it the highest mountain in the world. Summiting the Everest has long been viewed as the ultimate achievement in mountaineering, and Sherpa guides are an integral part of getting to the top. It’s so difficult to get there that even Kami Rita admits he didn’t make it to the summit on his first attempt.
“I made my first expedition in 1992,” he stated. “But I did not get the chance to reach the summit because I was just a beginner. It all went as planned, but the sad part was I did not summit on the first attempt. I felt really proud when I made my first summit and returned back to the base [two years later]. It was a happy moment for me as it proved that I was strong and fit enough to do the hard work.”
The 52-year-old climber now has more than 35 years of experience navigating the treacherous mountain trails. In 2018, he set his first world record by reaching the top for the 22nd time. Every year since then, with the exception of 2020 when the mountain was closed due to COVID-19, he has beaten his own record for most Everest summits.
In 2022, he broke that record for the fifth time, summiting for the 26th time in his career!
As if holding one world record wasn’t enough, Kami Rita boasts two. He is also the world record holder for making 39 assents on mountains over 8,000 meters (26,246 feet). That’s airline cruising height, in case you’re wondering!
Like many Sherpas, Kami Rita feels a spiritual connection to the Himalayas. He sees every mountain as a goddess, and before each expedition, he prays for grace and asks forgiveness for stepping onto her land.
“No matter how strong you are, how good you prepare, you have to be blessed by God to reach the top,” he said.
Kami Rita says he and his family are pleased to spread Nepalese pride far beyond their borders! He plans to keep climbing for at least another 10 years, giving him many more chances to keep breaking his own record.
Share this story to congratulate this athlete for his incredible achievements.
Want more good news?
Sign up for Smile, our free daily good news email with over 600,000 happy and optimistic subscribers!
Want to be happier in just 5 minutes a day? Sign up for Morning Smile and join over 455,000+ people who start each day with good news.