Bachendri Pal

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Description:
Bachendri Pal is an Indian mountaineer.

Early life

Bachendri Pal was born into a family of very moderate means, in 1954, in a village named Nakuri in Uttarkashi District of Garhwal. Bachendri was an active child, and did well in her school; she excelled in her first exposure to mountaineering was at the age of 12, when during a picnic she along with several schoolmates climbed a 13,123 feet high peak. They could not climb down as it had already become dark and had to spend the night at the peak without any food or cover. The experience remained ingrained in her memory, heightening her love for adventure and the mountains. She was declared the best student and was considered as “Everest material”. In 1982, while at NIM, she climbed Gangotri I (21,900 ft) and Rudugaria (19,091 ft). Around that time, she got employment as an instructor at the National Adventure Foundation, which had set up an adventure school for training women to learn mountaineering.

The ascent

In 1984, India had scheduled its fourth expedition, christened “Everest ‘84’”, to the Mount Everest. Bachendri was selected as one of the members of the elite group of six Indian women and eleven men who were privileged to attempt an ascent to the Mount Everest, Sagarmatha in the Nepaleses. The news filled with a sense of ecstasy and excitement. The elite team was flown to Kathmandu, the capital of Nepal in March 1984; and from there the team moved onwards. Recalling her first...
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