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Indian techie Satyarup Siddhanta, 35, is world’s youngest to climb tallest peaks, volcanoes

Satyarup Siddhanta is the only Indian to scale “Seven Summits and Seven Volcanic Summits”.

india Updated: Jan 17, 2019 07:39 IST
Snigdhendu Bhattacharya
Snigdhendu Bhattacharya
Hindustan Times, Kolkata
Satyarup Siddhanta,Indian techie,youngest to climb tallest peaks
Satyarup Siddhanta is the only Indian to scale “Seven Summits and Seven Volcanic Summits”.(Satyarup Siddhanta/Twitter)

Bengali techie Satyarup Siddhanta set foot on the 4,285-metre high volcanic peak, Mt. Sidley in Antarctica, at 6:28 am (Indian Standard Time) on Wednesday, becoming the youngest person in the world at 35 years, 274 days to scale the tallest mountains and volcanoes in all seven continents.

According to the Guinness Book of World Records, Daniel Bull, an Australian, was the youngest to climb these peaks. He achieved it at the age of 36 years and 157 days, completing the summits between 2006 and 2017.

Siddhanta scaled these peaks between 2012 and 2019. He is the only Indian to scale “Seven Summits and Seven Volcanic Summits”. “I played the national anthem on the summit,” Siddhanta told journalists over a satellite phone after returning to camp . “It’s very cold and overcast here. I suspect I have sustained frost bite on my fingers.”

“After a night halt at the camp, Siddhanta will start for the base camp that is at about 2,100 metres. From there, he will take a special flight for the camp in Union Glacier,” said Dipanjan Das, Siddhanta’s close friend who coordinates his logistics during such trips. “It took him 10 hours to reach the peak from the base camp,” Das said.

Union Glacier is a private camp that operates during the Antarctic summer (November to January), winding up at the end of each season, and serves as a logistics hub.

“Very few mountaineers in the world — about seven or eight — have completed the feat so far. He becomes the youngest,” said mountaineer Debraj Dutta, secretary of the Indian Mountaineering Federation, Eastern Zone chapter. HT couldn’t independently verify this claim.

On December 15, 2017, Siddhanta scaled Vinson Massif (or Mount Vinson), Antarctica’s highest point, to become the fifth Indian civilian to complete climbing the tallest peaks in each continent, the so-called Seven Summits. Veteran mountaineers said the speed with which Siddhanta, an asthmatic in his childhood, achieved the feat, made the achievement more remarkable.

“I am proud of Satyarup as a mountaineer for his world record. His feat is remarkable since he achieved it in less than seven years and in the face of fund constraints,” said Basanta Singha Roy, who became the first Bengali civilian to climb Mount Everest in May 2010 and went on to scale three peaks above 8,000 metres. “Watching his determined moves, we knew the record was only a matter of time. The short span in which he set foot on all these peaks makes it more special,” said Debasish Biswas, who climbed seven peaks that are higher than 8,000 metres.

Siddhanta is a software engineer. The son of middle class parents, Siddhanta, even worked for two companies in two different shifts to raise funds for his trips.

His first major success was in scaling Mt Kilimanjaro, Africa’s highest peak, on June 29, 2012.

“Our anxiety will not go till he safely comes back. There is danger in every step. Descending is considered no safer than ascending,” said Siddhanta’s mother, Gayatri, who is anxiously waiting for his return.

Siddhanta’s next target is to reach North Pole to complete what is known as Adventurers’ (or Explorers’) Grand Slam – which is reaching the two poles and summiting Mount Everest. In December 2017, he skied 111 km to South Pole and had climbed Mt. Everest on May 21, 2016.

He is expected to return to Kolkata on January 26.

First Published: Jan 17, 2019 07:12 IST