Kathmandu: A team of military mountaineers from the UAE Armed Forces, along with Sherpa support, recently scaled Mt. Himlung Himal, a 7,126-metre peak in the Himalayas, 150km northwest of the Nepalese capital, Kathmandu.

The team of 16 Emiratis from the UAE Armed Forces in sent three of its members to the summit on the morning of October 15, in conditions described as “extremely perilous”.

Freezing temperatures, exacerbated by gale force winds, dropped to well below -25C, forcing some of the team members to retreat due to the threat of injury from frostbite.

Undaunted, three Emirati climbers soldiered on into the teeth of the gale, gaining the summit some eight to nine hours after setting out from their high camp at 6,000m. It was an achievement by Mohammad al Dahoori, Abdul Aziz Al Tamimi and Tariq Al Zarooni, all of whom were veterans of the UAE Armed Forces conquest of Everest in 2016.

The successful scaling of any mountain over 7,000m represents a major achievement, but one achieved under such difficult conditions as experienced on October 15 makes the success “doubly meritorious”.

Most of the team have extensive operational combat experience in places such as Yemen, yet still seek additional challenges to harden their individual ability to withstand extreme pressure on behalf of their nation.

This expedition is a precursor to an expedition to summit Manaslu, one of the world’s iconic 8,000m Himalayan peaks, in late 2021.

The Manaslu expedition will be part of the 50th anniversary celebrations of the creation of the UAE and a way for the UAE Armed Forces to show its dedication to the nation.