Seven Summits: Filipina mountaineer draws inspiration from cancer-stricken sister in conquering dream

enablePagination: false
maxItemsPerPage: 10
totalITemsFound:
maxPaginationLinks: 10
maxPossiblePages:
startIndex:
endIndex:

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, January 18) — Mountaineer Carina Dayondon will be remembered in history as the first Filipina to successfully scale the world's seven summits.

The 39-year-old completed the impressive feat in a span of 12 years — North America's Mount Denali in 2006, Asia's Mount Everest in 2007, followed by Europe's Mount Elbrus in 2013, Australia's Mount Kosciusko in 2014, Africa's Mount Kilimanjaro in 2015, then both South America's Mount Aconcagua and Antartica's and Mount Vinson in 2018.

READ: Dayondon is first Filipina to conquer world's seven highest summits

In an interview on CNN Philippines' The Source Friday, Dayondon recalled how she was motivated to reach the peak of each of the seven summits.

It was her sister, who was diagnosed with a lung cancer, that pushed her to finish what she started.

"Nagkasakit siya nung 2012, so lalo akong nainspire na tapusin yung seven summits. At yun nga, nung nagkasakit siya, naging okay naman siya but unfortunately nung 2015, nung pa-Kilimanjaro ako, bumalik yung cancer niya and then nalungkot ako kasi nag-isip nung pabalik ako kasi naghingi lang siya sakin ng vitamins for cough. Yun pala, ayaw nya kong madistorbo na nagkumpleto ako ng pera ko for Kilimanjaro and then ayaw nya kong madistrobo na parang magworried ako sa mountain. Nag-reoccur na pala yung cancer niya sa lungs."

[Translation: She got sick in 2012 which inspired me to finish the seven summits. In 2015, when I was on my way to Mt. Kilimanjaro, her cancer returned and I was sad because she asked me for cough vitamins. It turned out, she did not want to disturb my trip to Kilimanjaro. Her lung cancer reoccurred.]

Following her successful trip to Mt. Kilimanjaro, Dayondon had mixed emotions running through her mind but it was the joy she saw from her sister that made everything worthwhile.

"So naging successful ako sa climb ko sa Kilimanjaro, pagbalik ko, sobrang nalungkot din ako kasi yun nga nasa ospital na siya. But I'm happy kasi alam ko namang sa journey ko kasama ko siya. Sobrang natuwa siya ngayon kasi hindi ako nag-give up at kinontinue ko at naging successful ako."

[Translation: I was successful in my climb to Mt. Kilimanjaro, when I got back to home I was sad because that was the time she was confined at the hospital. But I'm happy because I know she was with me in my journey. She was really proud because I never gave up and I continued and I succeeded.]

Dayondon shared some tips to Filipina mountaineers who would want to follow her footsteps.

"Sa mga Filipina na gustong mamundok, alamin nyo lang kung anong ginagawa niyo like the BMC (basic mountaineering course) 1, you have to train, prepare, BMC 1 2 3 bago kayo umakyat kasi para maiwasan niyo yung disgrasya or mga sakuna and then e-enjoy niyo lang. Like for me, I'm a full-time na nagtatrabaho sa Philippine Coast Guard, enjoyin niyo lang yung life niyo. Hindi siya nakabox lang as a service woman, there's life outside being a service woman na pwede niyo ring ma-achieve yung dreams niyo like me, at sumunod lang kayo sa tamang proseso, put hard work and pray to God, there's nothing impossible."

[Translation: To all the Filipinas who want to be mountaineers, just know what you'll be doing like the basic mountaineering course 1. You have to train, prepare, and undergo all BMC trainings before climbing to avoid accidents. Just enjoy. Like for me, I'm a full-time worker at the Philippine Coast Guard. Don't limit yourself, there's life outside of what you're doing so you can achieve your dreams like me. And follow the right process.]