Balmain student the youngest Aussie to reach Everest Base Camp

A student from Fr John Therry Catholic Primary School Balmain has become the youngest Australian ever to trek to Everest Base Camp.

Year 4 student Sophia Rout was eight years old when she finished her eight-day ascent on 4 January, and may be the youngest in the world to complete the climb during the harsh Nepalese winter.

She battled temperatures as low as -30°C during her hike to Everest’s first check point, which sits at 5380m above sea level.

We’re probably going to do Kilimanjaro next

– Sophia Rout

“My favourite part was when I saw the ‘way to Everest base camp sign’ because it just made my heart pound and I really just wanted to get there,” she said. “I’m pretty sporty I think and when I decided to trek I enjoyed it, and I thought it would be a good achievement to look back on.”

“I got these jars for Christmas and when I got to the top of Everest base camp and I got to put snow in the jars. We kept them, and I still have it.”

Sophia’s father and uncle climbed alongside her, along with a guide who had led her father on a previous Everest climb.

She said she wasn’t too worried about the hike, having previously done a number of local treks, but was happy to avoid suffering from the altitude sickness that affects many Everest climbers.

Her passionate father introduced her to trekking, and she now has her own goals including hiking the seven summits – some of the most challenging climbs in the world.

“My dad said that we’re probably going to do Kilimanjaro next in Africa,” she said. “I want to be the youngest in the world to do Everest. It’s a pretty big goal.”

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