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[pct-l] Bronka Sundstrom

Here's the incredible story of Bronka!

Woman, 77, climbs Rainier - and makes good time

ASHFORD, Pierce County - A 77-year-old has become the oldest woman to climb

Mount Rainier. And she did it in a time that would be the envy of many a

younger climber: 19 hours round-trip. "I just never thought I could do it,"

said Bronka Sundstrom, who lives just outside Mount Rainier National Park.

"I'm an old lady."

Accompanied by two guides, Sundstrom set out from Paradise, elevation 5,420

feet, shortly after 9 a.m. Saturday. She reached 10,080-foot Camp Muir in

three hours, 15 minutes.

She took a short break, then trekked past the tents pitched at Muir. Four

hours, 40 minutes later, she was at the peak's 14,411-foot summit. Most

climbers take six to eight hours to reach the summit from Muir. "What she

did was incredible, and that's what I wrote in the summit register," said

one of her guides, Jason Edwards of Rainier Mountaineering Inc. "I think

people like her prove that life doesn't stop at any given age. "It stops

when you give up, and she hasn't given up." Most climbers take at least two

days to scale the mountain and return, usually spending the night at Camp

Muir and leaving before dawn to attempt the summit.

"A one-day climb would be an extreme event for most mountaineers," said

Mike Gauthier, lead climbing ranger at Mount Rainier National Park. "There's

probably around 50 ascents like that a year out of 12,000 climbers, maybe


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