Daniel Griffith ended his 7Summits quest on Vinson, Antarctica last month. Malli instead started his quest on the peak - in January this year. Image of Vinson courtesy of Adventure Consultants; image of Daniel courtesy of his website; image of Malli courtesy of Malli Mastan (click to enlarge).
Canadian claims 7Summits world record - but Malli was faster

Posted: Dec 06, 2006 07:20 am EST
(MountEverest.net) Canadian Daniel Griffith (50) claims to have achieved the fastest 7Summits record, after climbing all 7 Summits (Carstensz Pyramid version) in 187 days. However, Indian Malli Mastan Babu has a faster score, completing the quest (Koscuiszko version) in 172 days. When climbing was banned on the Carstensz Pyramid both versions became valid; and that makes the Indian climber the fastest 7summiteer overall - while Griffith holds the record for the (original) Carstensz version.

Both climbers have forwarded their claims to be filed in the Guinness Book of Records.

While the "Seven summits" describe the highest summit on each continent, the peaks do not represent the tallest mountains on earth. With an average climbing altitude of 5693 meters (including both versions), many of the "seven summits" are trekking peaks with summits situated lower than Everest BC. All except one (Everest) have summits lower than the average camp 1 on 8000 meter peaks.

With the normal routes in addition offering few technical difficulties, there have been hundreds of 7summiteers over the last few years compared to the only 12 people in the world who have climbed the earth's tallest peaks (the 14, 8000ers).

Although popular for its traveling opportunities, the 7 summit quest is considered superficial in terms of mountaineering challenge. Originally initiated by American businessman Richard Bass, the tour however offers surprising media value as the "seven summits" often are confused for the world's highest mountains.

The "seven summits" (average climbing altitude 5,693 meters/18,677 ft):

Everest, 8848m
Aconcagua, 6962m
Denali, 6194m
Kilimanjaro, 5895m
Elbrus, 5642m
Vinson, 4892m
Carstensz Pyramid, 4884m
Kosciuszko, 2228m

The tallest peaks on earth (average climbing altitude 8,282 meters/27,172 ft):

Everest, 8848m
K2, 8611m
Kangchenjunga, 8586m
Lhotse, 8501m
Makalu, 8485m
Cho Oyu, 8188m
Dhaulagiri, 8167m
Manaslu, 8163m
Nanga Parbat, 8125m
Annapurna, 8091m
Gasherbrum I, 8080m
Broad Peak, 8051m
Gasherbrum II, 8034m
Shisha Pangma, 8027m

A native of Stratford, Ontario, Griffith (50) works as professional a climber and ski instructor. He began his quest by summiting Everest on May 24 this year and completed with Vinson on November 27. Malli started with Vinson on January 19 this year and finished with Denali July 10.

Daniel Griffiths 7 Summits were: Everest May 24, Denali June 15, Elbrus July 4, Carstensz Pyramid Sept. 24, Kilimanjaro Oct. 3, Aconcagua Oct. 20, and Vinson Nov. 27. He summited Everest from the south side with IMG.

Malli Mastan climbed each of the 7 summits on 7 different days of the week; and also summited each mountain in 7 different calendar months for the Koscuiszko version. He summited Everest from the south side with Tenzing Sherpa and SummitClimb. Since we first ran the story about his achievement, Mastan has also provided ExplorersWeb with a full set of summit pictures and certificates to support his claim.

Malli's 7 Summits dates:

1. Vinson massif - Thursday (Jan 19, 2006)
2. Aconcagua - Friday ( Feb 17, 2006)
3. Kilimanjaro - Wednes day (March 15, 2006)
4. Koscuiszko - Saturday (April 1, 2006)
5. Everest - Sunday (May 21, 2006)
6. Elbrus - Tuesday (June 13, 2006)
7. Denali - Monday (July 10, 2006)
8. Carstensz Pyramid - Saturday (Oct 28, 2006).

Malli, born in Andhra Pradesh, graduated in Electrical Engineering by Jamshedpur's National Institute of Technology, Master of Technology in Electronics by Kharagpur's Indian Institute of Technology, and Post Graduate Diploma in Management by Calcutta's Indian Institute of Management.

Logistic issues have resulted in two different versions of the 7Summit quest in later years: For some time climbing was banned on the Carstensz Pyramid, the highest peak in Oceania; thus 7Summiteers climbed the modest Mt. Kosciuszko in Australia instead. When Irian Jayas government resumed giving climbing permits for Carstensz, 7Summit climbers returned to include that peak as the true one for the Oceania stage.

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