Lydia Bradey

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Lydia Bradey is a New Zealand mountaineer. She is known for becoming the first woman to summit Mount Everest without supplemental oxygen in 1988.[1] She has gone on to summit Mount Everest at least three more times in 2008, 2013, and 2016[2][3]

Early life[edit]

Lydia Bradey was born to Royce and John Bradey in Christchurch, New Zealand. Her father was absent for most of her childhood, and she and her mother struggled financially.[4] Bradey took up mountain climbing as a teenager; she went on her first wilderness expedition at the age of 14, and by 17 she had climbed to the summits of Mount Cook and Mount Aspiring.[5] During this time she regularly climbed with her friend Rob Hall, and later met his friend Gary Ball.[4] When she was 19, Bradey left New Zealand for a four-year international climbing trip, which included an attempt on Mount McKinley in Alaska and ten ascents of Yosemite's big walls, seven of which were the first ascents by a female.[4][5]

Mountain climbing career[edit]

Bradey became known in the climbing world in 1987, when she reached the summit of Gasherbrum II, thereby becoming the first Australasian woman to climb one of the world's fourteen 8,000 metre peaks.[5] The climb proved controversial since Bradey was climbing on a permit for the adjacent Gasherbrum I (a peak she had abandoned in favour of Gasherbrum II due to bad weather), making her ascent illegal.[4] In October 1988, Bradey successfully climbed Mount Everest, making her the first female to reach the summit without supplemental oxygen, as well as the first New Zealand female and the youngest New Zealander at the time.[6] This ascent, like the previous year on Gasherbrum II, broke rules agreed with the Nepalese. Bradey did not have a permit for the route she climbed, and her teammates Rob Hall and Gary Ball said she had not reached the summit to avoid being banned from the mountain. When the Nepalese government threatened Bradey with a 10-year climbing ban, she too retracted her claim of a success ascent, only to reassert her claim to the summit later.[6]

In 1994, Bradey graduated from the University of Auckland with a degree in physiotherapy. She completed a certificate of acupuncture in 1998 and became a certified climbing guide in 2000.[7] Since then she has worked as an alpine guide based in Wanaka.[8] Bradey made her second summit climb of Mount Everest in May 2008, twenty years after her first ascent. She climbed as a guide for a group of clients under the outfitter Adventure Consultants (AC).[8] In 2013, and 2016 Bradey made her third and fourth ascents of Everest, again as an AC guide.[9]

Personal life[edit]

Bradey lives in Lake Hāwea, Otago with her partner Dean Staples.[10] Bradey's personal life was reviewed in the book Lydia Bradey: Going Up is Easy by Laurence Fearnley. In the book she discusses her ill-fated marriage to a man named Sam, other romantic relationships, climbing relationships, shoulder surgeries and personal finances.[11]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Going Up is Easy goodreads.com
  2. ^ "List of Everest summiters with Adventure Consultants". adventureconsultants.com. Retrieved 9 January 2017. 
  3. ^ Ibbotson, Lucy (22 May 2013). "Record-breaking glory on Mt Everest". The New Zealand Herald. Retrieved 10 March 2014. 
  4. ^ a b c d Child, Greg (1998). Postcards from the Ledge. Seattle, Washington: Mountaineers Books. 
  5. ^ a b c "Everest Summiter: Lydia Bradey". EverestNews.com. 2004. Retrieved 10 March 2014. 
  6. ^ a b Daly, Michael (29 May 2013). "Everest's history marked in blood". Stuff.co.nz. Retrieved 10 March 2014. 
  7. ^ "Lydia Bradey: High Altitude Climber and Motivational Speaker". CelebritySpeakers.com.au. Retrieved 10 March 2014. 
  8. ^ a b Haggart, Matthew (27 May 2008). "Lydia on top of peak twice in 20 years". Otago Daily Times. Retrieved 10 March 2014. 
  9. ^ Ibbotson, Lucy (22 May 2013). "Record-breaking glory on Mt Everest". The New Zealand Herald. Retrieved 10 March 2014. 
  10. ^ "About Lydia". GlobalGuiding.com. 2013. Retrieved 10 March 2014. 
  11. ^ Lydia Bradey: Going Up is Easy By Laurence Fearnley

Further reading[edit]