Uta Ibrahimi undertakes challenge of becoming first Albanian woman to climb Everest
- "My several years of experience in mountain climbing, continuous physical training, maturity and self-confidence, support by the pan-Albanian climbers, has made me more courageous to undertake this tough challenge carrying lots of risks," says 33-year-old Uta Ibrahimi, a marketer and climber based in Prishtina, the Kosovo capital city, where she runs an outdoor adventure travel agency
TIRANA, March 10 – She has climbed the 4,880m Mount Blanc and reached the 5,925m Ramdug Peak in the Himalayas. Her next challenge is climbing Everest, the world’s highest peak of 8,848m and every climber’s lifetime dream.
Her name is Uta Ibrahimi, a Kosovo-Albanian who has been picked as the first Albanian woman to undertake this tough challenge due to having the required physical and psychological condition. The announcement was made by the Tirana-based Dajti Alpine-Tourist Association on March 8, the International Women’s Day, as part of the ‘Albanian Woman in Everest’ project that is expected to conclude next November when Albania marks its 105th anniversary of independence.
The challenge comes five years after a team of Albanian climbers of the Dajti Alpine-Tourist Association led by Xhimi Begeja became the first to raise the national flag on the summit of Mount Everest.
“My several years of experience in mountain climbing, continuous physical training, maturity and self-confidence, support by the pan-Albanian climbers, has made me more courageous to undertake this tough challenge carrying lots of risks,” says 33-year-old Uta Ibrahimi, a marketer and climber based in Prishtina, the Kosovo capital city, where she runs an outdoor adventure travel agency.
“I feel honored and privileged that I was picked by the Dajti Alpine-Tourist Association and the Begeja family to represent Albanian women in the world’s highest peak. I will do my best, and with Xhimi’s support who has guided me in every detail, I hope this commitment will pay us all off, by flying our nation’s flag on the roof of the world,” added Ibrahimi.
Xhimi Begeja, who in 2012 on Albania’s centenary of independence, managed to climb the Everest together with his then-19-year old son Mateo, is convinced Uta’s courage and desire for new challenges will pay off despite ever-present risks in the climb to the world’s highest peak claiming lives each year.
Some 500 women have climbed Everest so far since 1975 with Japan’s Tamae Watanabe, aged 73 in 2012, becoming the oldest women atop Everest.
In a photo exhibition a year after the historic climb of the Albanian team, climber Fatjon Plaku, recalled that the same as climbing the Everest, taking pictures on the way to the Everest summit was very dangerous. “One of our team mates nearly lost his hand because of wanting to take some more pictures,” he said.
Back in 2012, Xhimi Begeja and his son Mateo, politician Gjergj Bojaxhi were among the team of six Albanian climbers who made it to the Everest summit assisted by Sherpas, having previously climbed the Mont Blanc and Kilimanjaro summits before deciding to take the risk of climbing the world’s highest peak at 8,848 metres above the sea level located in the Himalayas on the Nepal-China (Tibet) border.