March 26, 2023: Renowned Spanish mountaineer Carlos Soria has embarked on his latest mountaineering adventure, heading to the Khumbu region to prepare for his 15th attempt on Mt Dhaulagiri. At the age of 84, Soria is an inspiration to climbers and non-climbers alike, having successfully climbed ten mountains above 8,000 meters after turning 60. This is a remarkable achievement, and he continues to push himself to new heights with each subsequent climb.
Before his attempt on Mt Dhaulagiri, Soria will spend a couple of weeks at the Everest base camp for acclimatization. This is an essential step for climbers, as it helps their bodies adjust to the lower oxygen levels at higher altitudes. The Everest trekking is also a part of his acclimatization, according to Mingma Sherpa, Chairman of Seven Summit Treks.
If Soria successfully reaches the top of Mt Dhaulagiri this season, he will have to climb Shishapangma to become the oldest person to complete all 14 peaks above 8,000 meters. Soria had already made 14 attempts on the world’s sixth-highest peak but was unable to reach the summit on any of these previous attempts. However, with his wealth of experience and determination, he remains confident that he can succeed this time around.
In 2005, Soria claimed to have reached the central summit at 8,008 m of Mt Shishapangma (8,027 m). While this is an impressive feat, climbing to the true summit is required to complete all 14 peaks above 8,000 meters.
Soria’s previous summit successes are nothing short of extraordinary. He has climbed some of the most challenging mountains in the world, including Nanga Parbat, Gasherbrum II, Cho Oyu, Everest, K2, Broad Peak, Makalu, Gasherbrum I, Manaslu, Lhotse, Kanchenjunga, and Annapurna. These mountains are notorious for their treacherous conditions and have claimed the lives of many climbers.
In 2018, Soria underwent surgery on his left knee, and he will be attempting to climb Mt Dhaulagiri with a knee prosthesis. This is a testament to his resilience and determination to continue pursuing his passion for climbing, despite the challenges he has faced.
Chhang Dawa Sherpa, Expedition Director at Seven Summit Treks, said that a nine-member team, including six Sherpa climbers and a base camp manager, will leave for Dhaulagiri in mid-April once they have completed the acclimatization rotation in the Everest region. Mikel Sherpa will be the lead guide with Soria on Mt Dhaulagiri this season, according to Sherpa.
Soria’s mountaineering achievements are a testament to his unwavering determination, perseverance, and love for the sport. He continues to inspire climbers and non-climbers alike with his remarkable achievements and is a true icon in the mountaineering community. We wish him the best of luck on his latest climb and hope that he achieves his goal of reaching the summit of Mt Dhaulagiri.