Praises from the 'God of Cricket' himself: Indian woman who scaled Mount Makalu overwhelmed by attention

Priyanka Mohite could do little to evade the limelight, especially since the news of her feat had reached legendary cricketer and fellow Maharashtrian Sachin Tendulkar.

Priyanka Mohite after scaling Mount Makalu, the fifth-highest mountain in the world.   -  Twitter

When Priyanka Mohite, a mountaineer from Satara, Maharashtra became the first Indian woman to successfully scale Mount Makalu — the fifth-highest mountain in the world at 8,481 metres — on Tuesday, she had expected a little bit of fanfare, but she could not have braced herself for the kind of attention she was going to get. 

"Too many people in the house now," said an overwhelmed Mohite, during a chat with Sportstar.

She could do little to evade the limelight, especially since the news of her extraordinary feat had reached legendary India cricketer and fellow Maharashtrian Sachin Tendulkar.

On Monday, the Master Blaster had tweeted, “Congratulations to Priyanka Mohite on conquering the world’s fifth highest peak, Mt Makalu. Your determination & passion was evident in our meeting a few months ago. All the best for the future and more power to you! #MondayMotivation”

The 26-year-old had the opportunity to interact with Tendulkar in November 2018. “He had texted me earlier. When I had met him, it was a good interaction. His personality of course... He is the god of cricket! He asked me so many questions. He is really humble. The way he speaks is amazing... I was just mesmerised," she Mohite.

Mohite said she had been preparing for the challenging climb since last year. “Makalu is tough. It is windy. It is like a combination of wind, rocks and blue ice. So I was preparing for that because climbing with your crampons is difficult. Descending is more difficult.”

Priyanka Mohite interacting with Sachin Tendulkar in November 2018.   -  Facebook/PriyankaMangeshMohite

 

Of the five people accompanying her, one decided to abandon the climb beyond a point and Mohite blamed it on the weather. “For summit push, we waited. In between the weather was really bad. It was always snowing. We waited for 10 days. (May) 14, 15, 16 was the window for the summit push. After camp three, there was no route fixed. On 14 night, we decided to push for the summit directly as camp four was a lot windy. At around nine I reached the summit,” she said.

 

Earlier, in 2013, Mohite had become the youngest girl from her state to have conquered the 8,848m Mount Everest — the highest peak in the world — becoming only the third-youngest Indian to do so.

Mohite, who plans to conquer the third-highest peak Kangchenjunga (8,586 m) next, had also managed to scale Mount Lhotse, which is the fourth-highest mountain in the world, last year. Previously, in 2016, she had also climbed the 5,895m-high Mount Kilimanjaro.

Mt Makalu is located in the Mahalangur Himalayas, 19 km south-east of Mount Everest, on the border between Nepal and China. The first climb on Makalu was made by an American team led by Riley Keegan in 1954.