On World Environment Day, an Indian soldier was honored for achieving an impressive feat as one of the quickest non-locals to trek to the Everest Base Camp in 22 hours.

Muhsin V.A.
Muhsin V.A.

Muhsin V.A., an Indian soldier hailing from Aluva, accomplished an extraordinary feat by scaling Everest Base Camp (at an elevation of 17,598 feet) in a remarkable 22 hours, all without the aid of supplementary oxygen. Typically, trekkers dedicate several days or even weeks to undertake the hike to the EBC and complete the journey. Additionally, they incorporate acclimatization days in between to allow their bodies to adjust to the high altitude.

Left to deal with nasal bleeding and exhaustion. I had even thought of giving it up. But my familiarity with life at high altitude, thanks to my posting in Ladakh, and the rigorous Army training helped me prevail

Mr. Muhsin

Mr. Muhsin, a member of the Indian Army, serves in the region of Ladakh. Ladakh is administered by India as a union territory and is an integral part of the larger Kashmir region.

During his ascent to Everest Base Camp, Mr. Muhsin carried a powerful message to #SaveLakshadweep, a group of islands that are currently at risk of submergence due to the effects of global warming. The rising sea levels, caused by climate change, pose a significant threat to airports and residential areas in the Lakshadweep Islands, with an annual sea level rise ranging from 0.4 mm to 0.9 mm. Muhsin’s mission is to raise awareness among people about the dangers of global warming and its underlying causes.

Commencing his trek from Lukla, a quaint town situated at an elevation of 9,383 feet in the Khumbu region, Muhsin embarked on his journey to Everest Base Camp. Lukla serves as the starting point for numerous trekkers venturing toward the EBC. Notably, the town boasts a small airstrip known as Tenzing Hillary Airport, renowned as one of the world’s most perilous airports due to its challenging terrain and location.

lukla airport Nepal
lukla airport Nepal

If following a standard itinerary, a trekker takes 14 days to reach Everest Base Camp from Kathmandu:

Day 1Arrival Day1,350 m/ 4,428 ft (Kathmandu)
Day 2Flight from Kathmandu to Lukla and hike towards Phakding.2,840m/ 9,315 ft (Lukla) 2,610/ 8,560 ft. (Phakding)
Day 3Phakding to Namche Bazaar3,410 m/ 11,184 ft (Namche Bazaar)
Day 4Namche Bazaar, Acclimatization Day3,720 m/ 12,201 ft. (Syangboche)
Day 5Namche Bazaar to Tengboche3,860 m/ 12,660 ft. (Tengboche)
Day 6Tengboche to Dingboche4,400 m/ 14,432ft. (Dingboche)
Day 7Dingboche, Acclimatisation Day50,83 m/ 16,265 ft. (Nangkartshang Peak)
Day 8Dingboche to Lobuche4,910 m/ 16,104 ft. (Lobuche)
Day 9Lobuche to Gorakshep & Everest Base camp, E.B.C to Gorakshep5,140m m/ 16,859 ft (Gorakshep) 5,364m/ 17,594 ft (E.B.C.)
Day 10Gorakshep to Kalapathar & Back to Pheriche via E.B.C5,545 m/ 18,192 ft. (Kalapathar) 4,240m/ 13,907ft.(Pheriche)
Day 11Pheriche to Namche Bazaar3,410 m/ 11,184 ft. (Namche Bazaar)
Day 12Namche Bazaar to Lukla2,840 m/9,315 ft. (Lukla)
Day 13Morning flight Lukla to Kathmandu1,350 m/ 4,428 ft (Kathmandu)
Day 14Departure Day

According to The Hindu (a news channel), Muhsin was honored on World Environment Day by esteemed organizations such as the International Book of Records, the India Book of Records, and the Asia Book of Records for his remarkable achievement. His application was even evaluated by the Guinness Book of World Records. Despite considering assistance from a Sherpa at one point, Muhsin prioritized his mission of raising awareness about climate change and its impact on islands over merely attaining records. In addition to trekking to Everest Base Camp, he also successfully scaled Kala Patthar (at an elevation of 18,520 feet), a viewpoint renowned for offering breathtaking vistas of the world’s highest peak.

Beyond his military service, Muhsin is an avid mountaineering enthusiast who has undergone multiple mountaineering courses. He received training from prestigious institutions such as the National Institute of Mountaineering and Adventure Sports in Dirang, Arunachal Pradesh, the Nehru Institute of Mountaineering in Uttarkashi, and the Himalayan Mountaineering Institute in Darjeeling.

Muhsin’s aspiration to conquer Mount Everest without the assistance of supplementary oxygen faced a hurdle due to a lack of sponsors. However, he remains determined and hopeful to fulfill this personal goal in the future, displaying his unwavering spirit.