Los Angeles News

Teen aims to be youngest Everest climber

Monday, April 05, 2010

An ambitious Pasadena teenager is aiming to become the youngest person ever to climb Mount Everest.

Jordan Romero is like any 13-year-old boy, but at his young age, he's already broken a number of records. He's the youngest to climb some of the highest mountains in the world, and now he's going after the highest - Mount Everest.

"Yeah, I've been looking forward to this for so long and now it's finally happening and man, you can't even imagine the feeling of what it's like right now," said Jordan.

Monday, Jordan and his family packed up their gear for another adventure. The Big Bear native has already climbed six of the seven highest summits on earth. However, Everest poses the most difficult challenge. At 29,000 feet, it is an excruciating climb that can be deadly.

"It's just because of the altitude. It makes everything so tough, even your basic chores and putting your boot on, unzipping your sleeping bag and everything is just tough," Jordan said.

It's also proven to be a tough legal challenge. Some countries have age restrictions to climb these mountains. He's had to get special permits, and some wonder if a 13-year-old should be taking on such a risk. His team members are his father and his stepmother.

"I feel like he's ready for this mountain. We've worked really hard. Two years ago, I wouldn't have said the same thing, and I wouldn't have brought him here," said Jordan's stepmother Karen Lundgren.

"This is all his mission. This is all his idea. It's all his timeline. We're just packing the bags, chasing him around the world. It's pretty fun," said Jordan's father, Paul Romero.

It's pretty expensive, too. The government of Nepal charges a $35,000 fee per person for climbing Everest. The family is receiving help from fund raisers in Big Bear, and Jordan hopes by achieving this, he can inspire other teams all over the country.

"To get up off the couch and do things. To set goals in life and to live an active and healthy lifestyle," said Jordan.

After Mount Everest, there's just one summit left on Jordan's agenda and that's in Antarctica, and the plan is to go there at the end of this year.

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