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  • First Newfoundlander to Summit Everest Congratulates Mark Ballard on ‘Amazing Achievement’

    The first Newfoundlander to summit Mount Everest is offering congratulations to Mark Ballard, the St. John’s man who just made it to the top.

    Ballard reached the over 29,000 foot summit, just in time to see the Nepali sunrise this morning, and he is now on his way back down.

    Followers have been able to track his progress via GPS online.

    Al Hancock first summited Everest in 2007 and again in 2015. He says the entire process of climbing the mountain can take six to eight weeks of almost constant endurance, and the climb back down is often the trickiest part.

    He says you’re mentally and physically exhausted on the way down, and with the thin air at that altitude, it feels like you’re breathing through a straw.

    Hancock is currently engaged in the Big 14 Challenge raising funds to become the first Canadian to summit the 14 tallest mountains in the world, with six down already.

    He says Mark Ballard’s summit is an amazing achievement, and now he’s just waiting to hear the team is back safely at Base Camp.

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