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News > General > Join us in conquering the greatest peaks of the world!

Join us in conquering the greatest peaks of the world!

Welcome to our new S. Anselm's virtual challenge - for alumni, pupils, parents and staff!

23 Feb 2021
Written by Cheryl Stevens

Welcome to our newest sporting virtual challenge, which will see S. Anselm’s tackle one of the greatest tests of fitness and endurance the natural world has to offer.  The whole S. Anselm’s community – pupils, alumni, parents and teachers – is invited to get involved in conquering the tallest peaks on earth.


The world’s fourteen tallest mountains – known as the ‘eight-thousanders’ – are all located in the Himalayan and Karakorum mountain ranges in Asia, and their summits are a death zone.  Each are recognised by The International Mountaineering and Climbing Federation (UIAA) as being more than 8,000 metres (26,247 ft) in height above sea level, and being sufficiently independent from their neighbouring peaks.  Since 2012, the UIAA has been considering whether the list should be expanded to 20 mountains – but S. Anselm’s will confine ourselves to the existing fourteen for now!

The first person to summit all 14 eight-thousanders was Italian, Reinhold Messner, in 1986, who completed the feat without the aid of supplementary oxygen.  In 2010, Spanish, Edurne Pasaban, became the first woman to summit all 14 eight-thousanders, with the aid of supplementary oxygen; and in 2011, the Austrian woman, Gerlinde Kaltenbrunner achieved the feat without supplementary oxygen.  It was not until January 2021,that all eight-thousanders were summited during the winter season. Then, in 2019, the Nepalese climber, Nirmal Purja, set a speed record by climbing all eight-thousanders in 6 months and 6 days.

So with these astounding achievements in mind, what might we be able to achieve?

A good starting point is to watch this helpful explanatory video from Mr Simpson (our Director of Sport - please note, this video was aimed at current pupils - grown ups do not need their parents to help!)

To enter, you simply need access to a staircase to climb (many times), and/or a fitness device that can can track elevation/stairs climbed, every time your family go out for a walk or bicycle ride.

Let’s get cracking, there is no time to relax!

How to enter:

To get started, please submit an Entry Form for each individual who is taking part in the challenge. E.g. Nigel Mansell, not the Mansell Family.  Simply click HERE

You should enter the total elevation gained from your daily exercise, or stair/steps climb in metres (which makes it much easier for Mr Simpson to calculate).

If you are climbing steps/stairs, please only count the steps you go up – not those coming down – and then divide your total by four, which will give you an approximate figure in metres.

Don’t forget to send your photos in to


Good luck S. Anselm’s!

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