Saray Khumalo becomes first black SA woman to conquer Mount Everest

2019-05-16 07:47
Saray Khumalo.

Saray Khumalo. (Twitter)

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South African Saray Khumalo has reached the highest point on the planet becoming the first black African woman to scale Mount Everest, eNCA has reported. 

The business executive reportedly reached the summit in the early hours of Thursday. This was her fourth attempt at climbing Mount Everest.

In a previous attempt in May 2017, Khumalo had to be rescued from Mount Everest by helicopter. 

She had been injured during inclement weather while trying to reach the summit, Netwerk24 reported. 

Her previous attempts had been scuppered by an earthquake in Nepal and an avalanche.

READ: Saray Khumalo’s Mount Everest dream is dashed

Mount Everest is the world's highest mountain at its official elevation of 8 848m above sea level, according to Wikipedia

Sir Edmund Hillary and Nepalese Sherpa mountaineer Tenzing Norgay were the first people to reach the mountain's summit on May 29, 1953. 

Since then, around 800 people attempted to climb Mount Everest annually. More than 296 people have died trying to climb it. 


Early on Thursday morning, the Facebook page Summits with a Purpose posted: "A short while ago, Saray N'kusi Khumalo reached the top of the world.

Born in Zambia, with a Rwandan bloodline and now a South African, she has achieved her goal of becoming the first black woman from Africa to summit Mount Everest.

"In 2012, Saray summited Mount Kilimanjaro and in the process, raised funds for the Lunchbox Fund.

"The mountaineering passion took hold and she embarked on a journey to climb the highest peak on each continent, not for herself but the education of African children.

"She summited Mount Elbrus in 2014 and Mount Aconcagua in 2015.

"She became a Nelson Mandela Libraries ambassador and raised nearly R1m for school libraries. After being on Everest during both the Serac fall (2014) and the earthquake (2015), she reached the south summit in 2017.

"Through pure perseverance, grit and courage she decided to return to Mount Everest in 2019. During this expedition, she supports the Dr Thandi Ndlovu Foundation.

"From all of Africa - congratulations on your summit, Saray," Summits with a Purpose posted.

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