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Marta Misztal

Favourite adventure: Climbing the highest peak in South America

Member since: 2015

Countries visited: 52

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What’s the best adventure you’ve been on?

The best adventure so far that I’ve had was climbing the Aconcagua mountain in Argentina, the highest peak in South America. At almost 7000M, it is the biggest mountain outside the Himalayas. It’s also one of the Seven Summits, a challenge that I’ve called The Crown of The World as part of my travel blog @tolivetotravel. It takes 3 weeks to acclimatise, scale the summit and to get down alive. It definitively was the toughest 3 weeks of my life…until the next continent and summit!

At first we started the hike in the scorching sun, camping in desert like conditions. It took three days hiking just to reach base camp. From that point the true adventure started, we had to carry 20kg up the mountain, melt snow to drink and try not to faint with every breath as the air got thinner and thinner. That’s before dealing with vomiting, altitude sickness and the lack of toilets…

Eventually came the day of the final summit. It was still dark as we saw a lightning flash below us. It was simultaneously mind-blowing and painful! After many hours of struggle we finally reached the summit…I could not express the joy… I just cried like a baby…! With the Himalayas closed for winter, we were at that moment at the highest altitude of anyone in the world. After that, we had time to celebrate before coming back to reality and planning the next adventure.

What drew you to go on that trip?

Sense of achievement.

What was THE moment when you thought “this is the coolest thing I’ve ever done”?

When I realised Sir Ranulph Fiennes, one of the biggest explorers in the world and holder of several endurance records, was climbing the mountain at the same time. I thought “damn, that’s cool!”

Who was the most interesting person you met?

Although I didn’t get the chance to meet Sir Ranulph Fiennes, I met a bunch of successful mountain climbers, including climbing Everest and K2. I also met a couple of climbers who reached the highest peak in each European country which inspired me to follow their steps. And now a bunch of friends, that I met while traveling all over the world, join me to face the challenge, including some yachtweekers and skiweekers! I’ve called it The Crown of Europe.

What would you bring next time and why?

What would I bring on that trip? I’d bring Jacuzzi if I could, but given we even cut a sleeping mat into two to remove unnecessary weight then bringing anything other than banter would be a struggle to carry.

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What’s the most underrated place you’ve been to?

Honduras – especially Roatan island.

What part do you hate about travelling?

Coming back.

Out of all the places you’ve travelled to, which one would you marry, which one would you fuck, and which one would you kill? Why?

I’d fuck Vegas – it’s bangable, hot, and of course what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas. I’d marry Iceland – because its pieceful, quiet and at the same time intriguing and unpredictable. I’d kill Wales – because I’ve already climb the highest peak in there and as of now I have no intention of going back.

What’s the most odd souvenir you’ve brought back from a trip?

A hammock from Mexico… love it and it matches perfectly in my garden by the palms.

What’s your favourite memory from the Day 8 community?

My favourite Day 8 community memory is actually my last yacht week. I always tried to join the crew that I didn’t know, to meet as many people as possible. And that’s how I did my TSW and the first three TYWs, until my favourite boat (though not my boat) from BVI asked me to join them in Montenegro. I felt such a FOMO that for the first time I decided to go with the people I knew. It turned out to be the best time ever, my absolute fav TYW.