Women Empower Active Helen Thayer - PART 1

Sir Edmund Hillary was a family friend. He came to her school to talk about his ascent on Everest and in 1958 he skied to the South Pole. This made Helen think she would like to visit one of the poles. At nine, she summited Mount Egmont (now called Taranaki), a climb that topped out at 8200 ft. She is an experienced mountain climber, having summited all the highest peaks in North and South America as well as the Pamir range in Tajikistan. She has also summited many peaks in New Zealand. All her life Helen was encouraged to do athletic things. It didn’t sound like her parents were particularly interested in traditional gender roles. She grew up on a 10,000 acre (over 15.5 sq. mi.) sheep farm in New Zealand. -- Written by Elizabeth Gross

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