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The 7 Summits

 A Mountaineering challenge to climb to the highest mountain on each of the 7 traditional continents.  

The main 2 lists are:  Bass and Messner lists

If you want to climb mountains but the 7 summits isn’t the right challenge for you - visit Mountaineers to learn about other mountains and challenges.


From a geology viewpoint, there are only 6 continents on the Earth: Africa, Antarctica, Australia, Eurasia, South America and North America.


Europe is considered a peninsula of the Eurasia continental platform and is not a true physical continent.


However, from a political perspective, Europe is considered a continent thus Elbrus (18,513'/5642m), located on the border with Asia in southern Russia represents Europe and not Mont Blanc (15,771'/4807m) which lies in the Alps on the border of France and Italy.

Then there is the competition between Australia's Kosciuszko (7,310'/2228m) and New Guinea's Carstensz Pyramid, aka Puncak Jaya (16,024'/4884m) both located on the Oceania continent - which is not really a continent but a region of the south west Pacific that includes Australia, Fiji, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Samoa and many other islands.

Dick Bass the first 7 Summitter, choose Australia as one of the 7 continents and Kosciuszko as it's mainland high point.


However Canadian Pat Morrow, who was competing with Bass to finish the 7 challenged Bass's summit of Australia's Mt. Kosciuszko as the highest peak in Oceania saying that Carstensz Pyramid on Irian Jaya (Papua) in Indonesia's New Guinea was the true highpoint for the Australasian continental mass.


Italian Reinhold Messner jumped in and agreed with Morrow.


Today Carstensz is considered one of the seven but some 7 Summiteers try to bag the lower Kosciuszko to meet both the Bass and the Messner lists. INFO - from - 

The Mountains

  1. Everest, Nepal - 29,035/8850m 

  2. Aconcagua, Argentina - 22,902/6960m 

  3. Denali, Alaska - 20,320/6194m 

  4. Kilimanjaro, Africa - 19,340/5896m 

  5. Elbrus, Russia - 18,513/5642m

  6. Vinson, Antarctica - 16,067/4897m

  7. Carstensz Pyramid, New Guinea - 16,023/4884m

  1. Mt. Blanc, France/Italy - 15,771'/4807m 

  2. Mt. Kosciuszko, Australia - 7,310/2228m



First Woman - Junko Tabei (JAPAN) (1992)

Fastest Woman -  Maria Gordon  (UK)  (2016) - 239 Days 23 hours and 30 minutes


1st British Women - Rebecca Stephens MBE (1994) (also First British woman to summit Mount Everest)

1st Women to climb all 7 summits in a 1 yr time period - Annabelle Bond (2005)


Youngest Woman - Samantha Larson 18 years old  (2007) - On May 16, 2007, at the age of 18, she became temporarily the youngest non-Nepalese woman to summit Mount Everest. By reaching the top of Everest, she also became temporarily the youngest person to have climbed the Seven Summits (the "Bass list"), the tallest mountains on each of the seven continents. She and her father, Dr. David Larson, became the first father-daughter team to complete the Seven Summits. In August 2007 they climbed the Carstensz Pyramid, thereby also completing the "Messner list" of the Seven Summits.

1st Black Women - Currently going after this challenge is Saray Khumalo - She's done Everest, Aconcagua, Kilimanjaro and Elbrus, and has Denali, Vinson and Carstensz left.


7summits -


The most upto date complete list I can find is only up to 2016 - 

- 48 women did the Carstensz version, 37 did the Kosciuszko version, 18 both versions, 71 women altogether. INFO - 




Jennifer Price

From Army Officer to Extreme Endurance Athlete. 12 challenges in 12 months. Including an Ironman, a multistage desert ultra-marathon, Mt. Aconcagua, and a 1000 mile self supported Lands’ End to John O’Groats cycle.

Patricia Alcivar

Professional Boxer turned Mountaineer - Climbing Kilimanjaro (in 2 days!), Aconcagua & Mount Elbrus.

Alexandra Nemeth

The first Hungarian to climb the 7 summits!

Georgina Miranda

CEO of She Ventures  |  Adventurer, entrepreneur and activist. Completed 6 of the 7 summits and going after the Explorers Grand-slam!

Masha Gordon

A mum-of-two, who has entered the world record books by becoming the fastest women to complete the Explorers’ Grand Slam challenge!

Jennifer Strong McConachie

Adventure Athlete, Fellow of the RGS and Author of “Go Far: How Endurance Sports Help You Win At Life”.

Renata Chlumska

Adventure athlete who became the first Swedish and Czech woman to climb Mount Everest and in 2005 did a circumnavigate of the lower 48 States of the United States by her own power.

Jo Bradshaw

Dealing with grief, climbing Mount Denali and a 7 summits update!

Sara Hastreiter

Current challenge - to be the first women to sail the 7 seas and to climb the highest summits of the world's 7 continents!

Tima Deryan

Mountaineer & Mindset Coach. 1st Lebanese woman to summit Mt. Everest (2019) 

Sara Safari

Aiming to be the first Iranian to climb the Seven Summits (only Mt. Everest to go!) and trekking 335 miles across the largest ice cap in the world, Greenland.

Dr. Joyce Azzam

First Lebanese women to climb the 7 Summits & going after the Explorers Grand Slam!

Tashi and Nungshi Malik

1st siblings and twins to climb the 7 Summits and reach the North and South Poles and complete the Explorers Grand Slam.

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