By Casey Farrar
Published Aug. 29, 2010
The day Donall B. Healy reached the summit of Mount Everest, he had climbed 11 straight hours.
Most of it was in a blinding snowstorm.
Wrapped in a puffy orange climbing suit, his face covered by an oxygen mask and large, dark glasses to cut the glare, Healy perched to rest near a pole draped with colorful prayer flags.
He felt numb.
The 29,035-foot elevation at the top made each step feel like a monumental task, and even hooked to an oxygen tank, his senses were dulled in the thin air.
A teammate grabbed his camera and snapped a few shots of the 65-year-old mountaineer, who lives in New York City and Stoddard, before a guide insisted the group head down to avoid worsening weather.
Although the 10 minutes or so he spent at the top that day in May was a blur, the story of his arrival there had been a winding road that started long before he’d set off for Kathmandu, Nepal, with his wife, Joyce, in March. Continue reading