The 19-year-old teen from Naperville- Illinois, Luck Westlake, is off to conquer another peak to set a new record.
The Naperville teen mountaineer left Islamabad, Pakistan, on 15th June 2023 for the conquest of the second tallest mountain in the world, K2 (8,611 meters).
Back in May 2022, Westlake engraved her name in American mountaineering history as the youngest American teen to successfully scale the tallest mountain in the world, Mt. Everest (8,849 meters), when she was just 18 years old.
On the way to Becoming the Youngest Person to Conquer K2
The Naperville teen had made up her mind to conquest the second tallest snowy peak in the world back in April 2023. Westlake, who holds the record as the youngest American citizen to successfully conquer Everest, will make another history after the successful conquest of K2.
If she successfully scales to the top of Mt. K2, a mountain with treacherous and deadly slopes that are considered even more dangerous than Everest, she will become the first ever youngest person, male or female, to accomplish such a feat.
The Naperville teen mountaineer said that she would officially commence her ascend to the top of the K2 on 20th June and would be later joined by seven men with ages ranging from 19- 25 during her trek to the basecamps of the mountain. Then, after that, Westlake would push for the summit of the second tallest mountain along with her Sherpa guide Mingma.
Slopes of K2, considered the deadliest slopes among other 8000-ers, are known for their tough topography. 19-year-old Naperville’s Lucy Westlake, during the announcement of her expedition to the top of K2, told the media that she wasn’t sure how long her conquest would last.
Westlake, however, did mention that speed wasn’t what she was looking for; she wasn’t making an attempt to be the fastest youngest climber ever to successfully scale Mt. K2. Rather than that, her goal was to just simply to reach the top of the second-tallest snow-capped wonder in the world and engrave her name in mountaineering history as the youngest person to successfully conquer the summit of the K2.
After partnering with the non-profit organization WaterStep, the Naperville mountaineer is on a mission to raise awareness for people all around to have access to clean and safe water sources. And, her expedition on the K2 has a special mission; besides Westlake embarking her name in mountaineering history, the teen mountaineer is collecting ice and snow samples on the slopes of the mountain.
Her collected samples will be used by the climate scientist Dr. Ulyana Horodyskj Pena in her research about the loss of black carbon and ice mass loss from the Himalayan and Artic regions.
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Westlake’s Record After Records
Prior to setting out on the scaling of K2 and successfully conquering the tallest mountain in the world, Westlake had already set the record as the ‘Youngest Female to Summit the 50 U.S Sate Highpoint’ in June 2021.
She was just 12 years old, when the Naperville mountaineer became the youngest female in the world to climb the lower-48 U.S State Highpoints.
When asked about her determination to keep pushing herself and making records after records, the Naperville teen replied that she discovered her adventurous side because of her family, who, in her words, are ‘very adventurous’.
Westlake’s dad, Rodney, has been her huge inspiration from the very beginning. When the American teen mountaineer conquered the ower-48 U.S State Highpoints in 2016, she climbed with her father. And the father-daughter duo earned the ‘Youngest Father-Daughter Team to successfully conquer the lower-48 U.S State Highpoints’.
Similarly, when Westlake submitted all 50 U.S State Highpoint as a 17-year-old, her father Rodney was beside her. The father-daughter duo again set the record as the ‘Youngest Father-Daugther team to successfully conquer all the 50 U.S Sate Highpoints’.
The mountaineering enthusiast lives her life by the mantra ‘limits are perceived’, so in order to keep pushing herself, her body, and her mind, to see what she can do, Westlake has been making history after history by climbing the highest mountains in the world.
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Naperville’s Lucy Westlake’s Explorer’s Grand Slam Dream
Although Naperville’s teen mountaineer Lucy Westlake has been making records right and left from when she was just a kid and has already engraved her name in American and the rest of the world’s mountaineering history, it seems like the teen mountaineer isn’t quite done it.
Besides her tallest mountain in the world and K2 conquest, Westlake seems to have other plans for the near future as well.
The teen mountaineer has revealed another grand dream en route to her epic mountaineering journey. Westlake dreams of becoming the youngest American to complete the ‘Explorer’s Grand Slam.’
Explorer’s Grand Slam is an extremely adventurous challenge, where the participants have to conquer both the North Pole, in the Northern Hemisphere, and the South Pole in Antarctica, including the successful conquest of all the ‘Seven Summits’ spread across the seven continents.
The Naperville mountaineer is very close to her future dreams as well; she has, in fact, conquered, already conquered the highest snowy peaks of the continents like South America, North America, Kilimanjaro in Africa, and Europe, and her latest conquest of Mt. Everest in Asia in 2022.
So far, the Explorer’s Grand Slam Dream has been only completed by around 70 people from all around the world, which means it certainly isn’t an easy feat. Thus, Westlake, who has been raising the bar for herself after pushing herself to limits every time, certainly isn’t planning to hold her adventures anytime soon.
The current record is held by the Japanese mountaineer and explorer Marin Minamiya, who completed the challenge when she was just 20 years old.