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Last Updated: Wednesday, 25 May, 2005, 09:47 GMT 10:47 UK
Seven summits record breaker home
Annabelle Bond at summit of Vinson Massif, Antarctica
Ms Bond grew up in Hong Kong and went to boarding school in the UK
A British woman who broke a world record by climbing the highest peaks of seven continents in less than a year has arrived back in London.

Annabelle Bond, a former estate agent and daughter of HSBC bank head Sir John Bond, said she was glad to be home.

The 35-year-old suffered frostbite twice and said she felt lucky to survive Everest after two climbers who joined their party died on the descent.

The trip raised more than 800,000 for research into gynaecological cancers.

Click here to see a map of the seven summits

Ms Bond, currently based in South Kensington, London, completed the feat in 360 days.

She set a new world record by succeeding in less than half the time of the previous fastest woman, and in the fourth fastest time overall.

The things people take for granted I really appreciate these days such as a carpet on the floor... and being able to wash my hair
Annabelle Bond

The biggest problem had been keeping to the schedule, she said, adding that it was a "logistical nightmare" to climb each mountain in the right season.

The mountaineer was twice admitted to hospital with frostbite and said it was a challenge to maintain her fitness levels while living on little other than freeze-dried food.

Benign tumour

She said she had coped with the trauma of the Everest deaths by using "mental discipline".

"You cannot let your thoughts about what might happen run away with you. You have to think 'I can do this, it's not going to happen to me'."

Only 78 people have ever completed the seven summits, seven of them women.

Ms Bond scaled:

  • Mount Everest, in Nepal/Tibet, Asia

  • Aconcagua, in Argentina, South America

  • Mount Denali, also known as Mount McKinley, Alaska, North America

  • Kilimanjaro, Tanzania, Africa

  • Ebrus, Russia, Europe

  • Vinson Massif, Ellsworth Range, Antarctica

  • Mount Kosciuszko, Australia

    There is an ongoing debate, she said, about whether Mount Kosciuszko should be included on the list, over the Carstensz Pyramid in Indonesia - which some argue is the highest peak in the continent of Australia/Oceania.

    Although she plans to climb the Indonesian peak soon, she said there was no question she had already broken the seven summits record.

    The climber said she was looking forward to a hot bath after going six weeks without a shower.

    "The things people take for granted I really appreciate these days such as a carpet on the floor, making phone calls, and being able to wash my hair."

    The trip raised more than 800,000 for the Eve Appeal, which she set up having surgery to remove a benign tumour from her womb.

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    Seven Summits

    Map showing seven summits




  • SEE ALSO:
    Seven summit joy for Scots woman
    18 May 04 |  Scotland


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