The 2011 Climb to Fight Breast Cancer season ended on a 19,341-foot high note, with six participants reaching the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro, in Tanzania Sept. 4. This summer three other Climb to Fight Breast Cancer Kilimanjaro teams made the summit as well.
Climb to Fight Breast Cancer participant Carol Roll said few in the group had previously trekked higher than 14,000 feet, the approximate altitude of Mount Rainier. "The effects of the altitude on Mount Kilimanjaro surprised us, the way it leaves you out of breath and plays with your head," she said. "You feel really goofy once you’re above 16,000 feet."
Despite the challenges, Roll and her teammates, including cancer survivors Diana McCasey and Ellen Kraly, persevered and were rewarded with peeks into Kilimanjaro’s crater and finally, the view from Uhuru peak, considered the mountain’s summit.
Once at the top, Roll—who previously climbed Mount Rainier and Mount Shasta with the Climb to Fight Breast Cancer —unfurled a set of prayer flags honoring friends and relatives who have battled cancer. Read Carol’s story here.
Roll’s Kilimanjaro team raised $88,000 for the Center’s breast cancer research. They celebrated afterward with a safari trip to Serengeti National Park.
Sign up for 2012 climbs
The Climb to Fight Breast Cancer includes training in mountaineering skills by professional guides. Registration is open for next year’s treks; visit the Climb to Fight Breast Cancer website for more information.