A Guide to Women in Canadian History
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Sharon Wood (1957- )
Climber Sharon Wood on the summit of Mt. Everest
(Courtesy Sharon Wood)
Sharon Wood holds the distinction of being the first North American woman to conquer Mount Everest, the highest mountain in the world.
Born in Halifax, Sharon grew up in Vancouver, British Columbia and moved to the Canadian Rockies at seventeen. She soon signed up for a rock climbing course, and at the age of eighteen began her career as a climbing instructor. Sharon Wood earned her Climbing Guide status, then began working six months of each year as a helicopter ski guide. For the remaining six months the mountaineer engaged in her passion - climbing the highest mountains she could find.
In 1977 Sharon Wood climbed Canada's highest mountain, Mt. Logan in the Yukon. She climbed in Alaska, Argentina, Peru, and then Nepal. On May 20, 1986 the elite mountaineer reached the summit of Mount Everest. Sharon Wood is the recipient of the Tenzing Norgay Award as "Professional Mountaineer of the Year". Recognition of her achievements also includes an honorary doctorate of laws from the University of Calgary and a Meritorious Service Medal from the Governor General of Canada. Now settled in the Canadian Rockies at Canmore, Alberta, Sharon Wood continues climbing as well as raising her children and speaking about her adventures at presentations across North America.Discover more
National Georgraphic site on Mount Everest, including a virtual climb, articles, maps, images, climbing history, games.
The official Sharon Wood website.
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