Bonita Norris – The Ice Queen

Bonita Norris, youngest british woman to climb Mount Everest has featured on the Maximise Potential Podcast, not once but twice!

Here is an article we found recently regarding how she and other female explorers are setting a good example to young girls today:

The arrival of Amelia Hempleman-Adams, 16, at the South Pole last week was an arresting sight. Since Roald Amundsen’s conquering of the bottom of the Earth exactly 100 years ago, polar adventuring has largely been the preserve of rugged, bearded men.

But since the female polar pioneers of the 1980s, more and more women have trekked to the poles. The latest group to take up the challenge are noticeable by their youth – not to mention their good looks.

Taking on the ice caps is by no means a young woman’s game just yet but the new female explorers have told the Standard they are proud of the example they are setting to girls growing up.

Bonita Norris, 24

On her blog Bonita Norris, left, describes herself as “an average girl” but the stories of daring the 24-year-old already has to tell suggest otherwise.

In May last year she became the youngest British woman ever to climb Everest, having previously become the youngest woman to scale Nepal’s Mount Manaslu, the world’s eighth-highest mountain.

Her triumph on Everest brought fame and lucrative contracts for the telegenic Norris, but it almost ended in disaster. On the way down from the summit she slipped badly, hurting her back; her legs quickly froze until she couldn’t feel her feet, leaving her in danger of frostbite. Kenton Cool, the professional mountaineer who helped her reach the summit, described her state as “a shocking situation”.

After extra sherpas were sent up the mountain with oxygen and medical equipment she was bound up with her legs tied together and lowered down by her climbing harness. Cool described it as “one of the most harrowing things I’ve experienced” and Norris told the Standard the experience was “like nothing on Earth”.

Norris survived to tell her tale to a receptive media and to garner the rewards of an expedition that had raised thousands for children’s charity Global Angels. Within months she had signed up to front an advertising campaign for car manufacturer Nissan and was speaking in schools about her dramatic fall in Everest’s “dead zone”.

In May this year she reached the North Pole with Alan Chambers and is now planning for her next big adventure, the one that would complete “the trilogy” of exploring – a trip to the South Pole with the Karrimor team next winter.

The not-so-average Norris – whose father works in the roofing business and who went to school at The Holt, a girls’ comprehensive in Wokingham – told the Standard the previous lack of female participation in extreme exploration was due more to lack of interest than physical aptitude.

“I don’t think many women have wanted to take on challenges like this. I went to a girls’ school and we were encouraged to go and achieve things as an individual. Maybe that had an effect on me.”

Article Source: London evening standard.co.uk

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About the Author

Hi, I'm Jenna Affleck, co-producer of the Maximise Potential Podcast. I'm really excited about being part of Maximise Potential. It's great being able to help other people be successful in life and it's also helping me maximise my own potential. The inspiring people we interview gives me the motivation to aim higher whether it be in my personal life or career and hope it does the same for you too. So keep smiling and enjoy the podcast!