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Rashmi Rekha Das

Needless to say that mountain climbing is one of the dangerous sporting activities in the world. It involves loads of risks. In every step, a mountaineer is exposed to injuries like twisted ankles, sprained muscles, torn ligaments, broken bones and back injury and of course frostbite. 

Keeping all these factors in mind, many youth shy away from risking their lives and go for mountaineering. However, Bhubaneswar-based nine-year old Aradhya Jena is an exception. She did something which children of her age hardly think of. 

Yes, Aradhya has created a sort of record in the country by becoming the youngest mountaineer to trek six hill tracks/peaks in six days from June 17 to June 22, 2022.

Being inspired by her ace mountaineer father Ganesh Jena, young Aradhya took up this arduous task.Despite being fraught with danger, Aradhya risked her life to scale mountains and set a record as a youngest mountaineer. She aims to become youngest woman Everester in future.

On day 1, she scaled Jispa ( 12,322ft), on day 2, Baralachala (16,250ft), on day 3 Bharatpur Base camp (17,667ft), on day 4 Yunum Advance Base Camp ( (17,667ft).  Similarly, on day five she climbed Sarchu (13,897ft). On day 6, Baralathla (16,358ft). Father Ganesh Ch Jena accompanied her as an escort.

Recalling her journey, she said, “When I was in Class 3, my father had made me climb a hill. I just loved it and decided to be a mountaineer. When I left for the trek I was really excited. When I reached Himachal Pradesh and saw snowfall, my happiness knew no bounds.  But it was too difficult to trek mountains in freezing temperature. My father was there to guide me in every step.”

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