The journey to the summit of Everest

My name is John Zechendorf, and I am currently in the process of my own Seven Summits adventure. Climbing the Seven Summits means reaching the peaks of the highest mountain on each continent: Denali in North America, Aconcagua in South America, Kiliminjaro in Africa, Elbrus in Europe, Vinson in Antarctica, Mount Everest in Asia, and of course, Kosciuszko in my home country of Australia.

The adventure started in 2010, and commenced with an Advanced Mountaineering Course in December of that year, held in New Zealand, before tackling Kilimanjaro in January of 2011. Over the coming years, I have also climbed Denali, Aconcagua and Vinson, leaving only Everest and Kosciuszko to tick off the whole list.

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JohnZeckendorfAugust 18th, 2019 at 7:04pm

Looking forward to this fundraiser with the amazing team led by Deloraine Rotary. A very worthy cause to help the Nepali and every $ raised will get matched twice! Please come along if you can and send $ even if you can't make it.

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JohnZeckendorfAugust 18th, 2019 at 7:04pm

Ecuadorian volcanoes come to an end.

More accurately, our trip is almost over (the volcanoes are fine). After skipping chimborazo in the hope that my chest infection would get better, we headed out to the base of our last objective, Antisana...

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JohnZeckendorfAugust 18th, 2019 at 7:04pm

It has been a tough few days for me. A few days ago, we attempted Cotapaxi. While the weather was windy and there was lots of soft snow, i was feeling good until around 5500m when i suddenly felt crap. Muscles wouldn't obey and felt...

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JohnZeckendorfAugust 18th, 2019 at 7:04pm

Ok, so after freaking you (and to be honest us) out with the last post about the size of our next challenge, we pulled into our hacienta near the base of the mountain (base camp if you will) about 20 minutes later. I think this...

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JohnZeckendorfAugust 18th, 2019 at 7:04pm

Cotapaxi - first glimpse up close from the road. Two things are apparent to our team. Firstly, that is a big hill. Secondly, it is smoking. Stay tuned...

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JohnZeckendorfAugust 18th, 2019 at 7:04pm

Hi Cayambe

After a few days of acclimatisation walks and skills we finally hit the slopes early this morning with a successful climb of Cayambe.

We "woke " at the climbers hit at 4600m at 11pm last night...

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JohnZeckendorfAugust 18th, 2019 at 7:04pm

Great acclimatisation walk today and spoilt with views of all the volcanoes we will be climbing over the next 10 days or so. Also visited middle earth i.e. The exact equator. Heading up the hill tonight so not sure how good the Wi-Fi will be....

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JohnZeckendorfAugust 18th, 2019 at 7:04pm

Beautiful setting for an acclimatisation walk today in the Cayambe park. We didn't see much wildlife but did see a little of the rarer species per the photos. Amazing setting and feeling great at >4000m. Capped it off with a lovely walk in the sky...

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JohnZeckendorfAugust 18th, 2019 at 7:04pm

Some photos of the climb this morning of Pichincha volcano. We got to within 250m of the summit when an electrical storm turned us back. Beautiful flowers and even some hummingbirds. Including some valuable instruction by Jose Luis or guide on how to avoid number...

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JohnZeckendorfAugust 18th, 2019 at 7:04pm

Roughing it at base camp for cayambe. We didn't manage to climb our first mountain today as there was lightning but came within 250m of the summit before turning back. Nice drive approx 3 hours to the base of our next objective, Cayambe. Will be...

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JohnZeckendorfAugust 18th, 2019 at 7:04pm

Unofficial acclimatisation walk from 3900 to 4300m. Stunning views but with only a day at 3000m so far, it was really hard work. Went to base of cliff line. Will climb this in a couple of days. Summit is ~4750m.

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JohnZeckendorfAugust 18th, 2019 at 7:04pm

Quito la Vista

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JohnZeckendorfAugust 18th, 2019 at 7:04pm

From cage to plate.

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JohnZeckendorfAugust 18th, 2019 at 7:04pm

When you have a man sized thirst...

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JohnZeckendorfAugust 18th, 2019 at 7:04pm

Just arrived in Lima after a 4 hour flight from Santiago. 30 hours of travel with only a few snatches of sleep along the way. Ready to sleep.

We have been blessed in this leg of travel in a couple of...

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JohnZeckendorfAugust 18th, 2019 at 7:04pm

How do you fit a 6'6" man into a seat designed for a 5' South American? Simply, you don't.

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JohnZeckendorfAugust 18th, 2019 at 7:04pm

Started training for climbing some volcanos in Ecuador. Had the most amazing frost on top of Mt Wellington during our last training run. So wonderful to live in Tasmania amongst such beauty.

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JohnZeckendorfAugust 18th, 2019 at 7:04pm

Had a great time at the Australia Day celebrations in Campbell Town. It was a great privilege to be part of the day and to welcome 9 new Australians.

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JohnZeckendorfAugust 18th, 2019 at 7:04pm

Getting back into the saddle with a lovely training run this morning. Beautiful running through snowy trees on Mt Wellington.

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JohnZeckendorfAugust 18th, 2019 at 7:04pm

This was from one of my training walks in Tasmania. We walked 21km to Frenchmans Cap in a day (~1000m ascent with packs) on the first and last days and on the middle day, dropped some 1500m to one of the most beautiful parts of...

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JohnZeckendorfAugust 18th, 2019 at 7:04pm

Ha

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JohnZeckendorfAugust 18th, 2019 at 7:04pm

Had a great chat with 400 girls at our school yesterday. The best praise I ever received " my friends said you were so good that they didn't look at their phones once during your talk" Wow!

JohnZeckendorf
St Michael's Collegiate School
‘Make the extraordinary, ordinary!’ That was the message Collegiate parent Mr John Zeckendorf delivered at our Middle and Senior School Assembly today. John has completed an amazing Seven Summits adventure, reaching the peaks of the highest mountain on each continent. John’s adventure began in 2010 and most recently he become the first Tasmanian to summit Mt Everest. John spoke to the girls about the importance determination, patience and persistence and had everyone on the edge of their seats. You can listen to a brief overview in the clip below. There is more good news to follow as the Collegiate Parents and Friends’ Association are delighted to be hosting an evening with John on Monday 30 October from 5.30pm to 7.00pm. Come along and hear John speak about his remarkable achievements and the skills he used to get himself to the top of the world. Tickets can be booked now via www.trybooking.com/RFRC https://vimeo.com/227010089
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JohnZeckendorfAugust 18th, 2019 at 7:04pm

Free dinner

St Clements Church in Kingston is running free dinner to hear about Everest and an opportunity to ask questions and see some gear.

Free??? Yes but a hat will be passed around to raise money for...

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JohnZeckendorfAugust 18th, 2019 at 7:04pm

Some background to a rather weird video message. Rock Patel is my tent mate from Denali and Aconcagua and we had decided to climb Everest together also. Tuftley (featured in the message) is Nathaniel Zeckendorf stuffed toy given to me years ago and has accompanied...

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JohnZeckendorfAugust 18th, 2019 at 7:04pm

A lot of people have asked me about what training I did to prepare for Everest. I will try to upload some videos about the training as well as some stories and photos / videos from previous trips.

Most of my training...

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