A climb to success

On the occasion of Women’s Day, mountaineer Krushnaa Patil is pushing the envelope for women in the mountaineering arena. She speaks to us about her trip from Mumbai to Kathmandu, the climb to the top of Mount Makalu and the film on this journey.

Her name is synonymous with all things adventurous. Puneri girl Krushna Patil has been on a trekking and travelling spree from a young age. After becoming the youngest Indian to climb Mount Everest (at 19), her climb to success and records continues and she is on her way to be the first Indian woman to climb the Seven Summits which are the highest peaks from all the continents. And now she is all set to climb Mount Makalu (5th highest mountain in the world) near the Nepal-China borders. She will also be making a highway trip from Mumbai to Kathmandu and filming the journey. In this endeavour, she has been supported by City and Industrial Development Corporation of Maharashtra or CIDCO and has been sponsored with a SUV by Mahindra Adventure.
“I have taken cars for trips, with tents, rations and the work. I have stayed in vehicles and travelled for months. This way, it is nice to see India. This would be my second attempt to climb Makalu. I thought I should make a film about this trip and my climb. Why not tell my tale to everyone?,” says the adventurous Krushnaa. “On the road, you can meet all kinds of amazing people. Plus, I do not go with a script,” she gleefully narrates.
If you are thinking that Krushnaa is more interested in doing things to create records, then think otherwise. Things or rather events just happened. “As a child, I was very curious. I always wanted to see countries and climb mountains. I wanted to be able to travel. I just started working towards it. I don’t care to go and register any record. If the record stays, then it does. I am not going to pay for it. But I do love to make a record,” Krushnaa admits.
DSC_9313-mediumKrushnaa is pushing the limits and creating a space for not just herself but also for other women. She has her thoughts on what women can do. “Women are more capable in doing things. I have an urge to do things. I was always stopped by caution. Understandably, men want to be protective, but I don’t want to stop exploring. At 15, I travelled to Uttar Pradesh where I met good people and had a great time.” She feels one never hears of 15 year old girls travelling to such distance but she thanks her mother for support. “Bad things do happen but everything depends on body language, not on how the girl is dressed.”
Krushna is happy to narrate that people have not been giving extreme reactions to her adventures or mountaineering. The reactions are normal including within her circles. Coming back to her new trip to Makula, she wishes her trip to be just like the one seen in Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara. “It should have a cool story of its own. I have never held a camera for something like this. But I think I can do this. I may give this to film festivals. It depends on the footage. There will be nothing like this. I don’t even mind a television release or a travel series. The best part is that nothing will go waste.”While speaking of the film Highway, she compares it to her talking about her trip. She feels people like seeing films or the journeys as shown in the film. “Recently, I met some women in Mumbai who travelled to Delhi by road. People are not scared of travelling.” We believe you, Krushnaa Patil.

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