For Haryana-born 26-year-old twins, Tashi and Nungshi Malik, there is no mountain high enough...literally. They first scaled Mt Everest in 2013 and by 2015, had reached the summits of the tallest peaks in all seven continents including Mt Vinson in Antarctica! They are the first female twins to climb Mount Everest and also the record holders for being the first siblings and twins (and youngest women ever) to scale the Seven Summits and the North and South Poles!
Everytime I see what I see on the way up to the summit, my dreams only get bigger.Nunshi Malik
What started as an innocent course in mountaineering in 2010 for their personal development soon turned into the tallest of dreams. The twins quickly progressed from the basic course in Dehradun, their home city, to the the advanced courses, and earned the qualification of ‘instructor’, a merit doled out to women very rarely in India.
Due to their steadfast performances, they jokingly began to be known as the ‘Everest Twins’ within the mountaineering circuit. When that happened, the then 21-year-old pair set their eyes on the highest peak of the world and made sure that they took the final step on its summit at the exact same moment.
Once it was scaled, there was nothing stopping the twins from reaching for the other peaks, including Mt Kilimanjaro (Africa), Mt Elbrus (Europe), Mt Aconcagua (South America), Mt Carstensz Pyramid (Oceania), Mt McKinley (North America) and finally Mt Vinson Massif (Antarctica).
In April 2015, they started the ‘Nungshi Tashi Foundation’ with twin goals of developing mountaineering as sport in India and of girl empowerment through outdoor adventure. The vision of the foundation is ‘Making India an ‘outdoor nation’, with active and equal participation of girls and women’. Under the ‘Mountain Girls Outdoor Livelihood Programme’, the foundation is adopting villages along popular Himalayan trekking routes, to provide training for girls to work as camp managers, guides, in the IT sector and in hospitality.
The Quint met the unstoppable twins at the TedxGateway event in Mumbai where the two were invited to talk about their motivational life story and their biggest takeaways from it.
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