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On Top of the World! Telangana Girls Poorna & Sri Vidya Conquer Europe’s Tallest Mountain

Mountaineers Poorna Malavath,17, and Sri Vidya,16, scaled Mount Elbrus at 5,640m!

The lack of crevasses on Mount Elbrus in Russia may give climbers a false sense of safety, but it is all the more challenging owing to its high elevation, snow and strong winds. About 15 to 30 climbers die there each year. But to think that would scare two Telangana girls from scaling it would be very wrong. Because they already did.

According to Adventure Sports Director R. Reddy, on July 27 at 7:30am Moscow time, 17-year-old Poorna Malavath and 16-year-old Sri Vidya from Andhra Pradesh reached the tip of the tallest mountain in Europe. The girls are students from the Telangana Social Welfare Residential Educational Institutions Society (TSWREIS).

Their mentor Praveen Kumar said in a Facebook post that for Poorna, it was the third-highest peak in a row.

“Earlier she scaled Mt Everest (Asia) and Mt Kilimanjaro (Africa),” he wrote. She was 13 when she became the youngest in the world to scale Mt Everest.

An inactive volcano standing 18,506ft tall, climbing Mount Elbrus is no easy feat, even though it’s considered the easiest among the Seven Summits. “Mount Elbrus is a dormant volcano and the last explosion occurred about 2,000 years ago. The two summits of Elbrus are, in fact, two craters of volcano. Everywhere on its slopes you can see debris of solidified lava,” Reddy told The Hindu.

Apart from the girls, the team consisted of Satya Rao from Visakhapatnam, Raghunadh Reddy from Guntur and Varsha Rahul from Pune. The expedition began on July 21 when they flew to Russia from Hyderabad, and reached the mountain base on July 22. The next day they climbed up to 3,500m and returned to the base after testing the waters. On July 24, they again climbed up 3,500m and stayed the night. Finally, they reached the summit of Mount Elbrus on July 27.
After reaching the peak, they displayed a 50ft Indian flag, sang the National Anthem and thanked the Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh N. Chandrababu Naidu. They will reach Vijayawada on August 1.

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Written by Deepika Bhardwaj

When she's not resolving conflicts between belief and desire, she's letting her mornings be consumed by Coltrane and leaving her nights in the hands of Hendrix. An average singer and lover of graphic novels, Deepika tries to proper your noun for a living.