U.S. Marine, Amputee, and Mountaineer Kirstie Ennis Turns Around 200 Meters From Everest Summit

Brian K | ClimbingClimbing
Kirstie Ennis
Left-leg amputee Kirstie Ennis on Denali. | Picture: Kirstie Ennis Instagram Page

Kristie Ennis has scaled six of the ‘Seven Summits,’ the highest peak on each continent. Most recently, the experienced mountaineer decided to turn around just 200 meters (650 feet) from the summit of Mount Everest, Nepal, due to injury. We wish her the best and hope she can make another attempt later.

Kirstie Ennis with frostbite on her face back at Camp IV. | Picture: Kirstie Ennis Instagram Page

This was not the first time Kristie was near the summit of Mount Everest. In 2019 the U.S. veteran was forced to turn back due to her team facing low oxygen levels.

Kirstie Ennis served in Afghanistan with the U.S. Marines and was injured in a Helicopter accident resulting in the amputation of her left leg. Since then, she has continued snowboarding and mountaineering as outlets.

“Well, this time around, it didn’t make sense to continue going. I pride myself on being able to put my team first, but also just self-preservation. And when I looked up, I was at the South Summit, and when I looked up at the line going into the summit, I realized that it wasn’t worth it.

If something got sideways as far as my prosthetic limb or my prosthetic device, I didn’t have the right team with me. And there were hundreds, literally hundreds, of people ahead of me and below me. So even if my 10-hour summit day was successful, [and] we didn’t run out of oxygen or anything, it would still take me 24 hours to get down.

And so this time around there was a point where pride kind of got in the way, I was slightly embarrassed that I had to turn around. But at the same time, I’m very, very proud of the fact that I made that decision, because there are a lot of [other] people [climbing] that got hurt that night. I wouldn’t be able to live with myself if anybody on my team got hurt. “

– Kristie Ennis

Kirstie remained in good spirits despite the setback. | Picture: Kirstie Ennis Instagram Page

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One thought on “U.S. Marine, Amputee, and Mountaineer Kirstie Ennis Turns Around 200 Meters From Everest Summit

  1. When it comes to Mount Everest, there is no “team”.You do as you must to prevent become a resident of Rainbow Valley… where rent is never charged and your lease never expires. During their stay, residents never age; for Rainbow Valley and the surrounding region truly is a fountain of youth

    Anyways, you get the idea. The point being that she did right saving herself, and she needs to get that “team” nonsense out of her head that the corps polluted it with. The truth is if she were in any real trouble and needed their assistance, they would just pass by and leave her.. that way they’re not risking their own lives

    That’s the truth about how life after service REALLY is

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