Reach for the Top Summary Analysis and Explanation

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Reach for the Top Summary Analysis and Explanation

About the Poet Santhosh Yadav
Santosh Yadav is an Indian mountaineer. She is the first woman in the world to climb Mount Everest twice, and the first woman to successfully climb Mt. Everest from Kangshung Face. She was, of course, a kind-hearted person and a daredevil who was dedicated to her mission. Her strength was her physical fitness, mental toughness, and climbing skill.

santosh yadav - Reach for the Top Summary Analysis and Explanation

Poet Name Santosh Yadav
Born 1969 (age 51 years), Joniawas
Spouse Uttam Kumar Lal (m. 1992)
Education Maharani College
Awards Padma Shri
Nationality Indian

Reach for the Top Introduction

The chapter ‘Reach for the Top’ consists of two biographical pieces that depict persistent endeavors to reach the top. The first part recounts the journey of Santosh Yadav, the only woman in the world who has scaled Mt Everest twice.

The second part is about Maria Sharapova, a Russian girl who reached the summit of women’s tennis when she was barely eighteen. The story of the two women inspires us to set our goals and achieve them ignoring all the hurdles.

Reach for the Top Summary of the Lesson

Santosh Yadav is the only woman in the world to have climbed Mt Everest twice. She was born in the small village of Joniyawas of Rewari district in Haryana where the birth of a daughter was not generally welcome. She was the sixth child in the family with five sons, a sister to five elder brothers. Her family named her ‘Santosh’ which means contentment.

But she was not content with her place in the traditional set up of the family and adopted a different lifestyle. She used to wear shorts instead of traditional Indian dresses. She was determined to change the people around her because only then she could achieve what she had dreamed.

Her parents were affluent landowners with orthodox attitudes. They had no interest in giving much education to their daughter. So they sent her to the local village school. When Santosh turned sixteen, her parents pressurised her to marry because most of the girls in their village used to get married at this age. But she didn’t listen to them.

She firmly told her parents that she would not marry before getting a proper education. Her parents got angry and refused to pay for her education. But that didn’t deviate her from her goal. She planned to do part-time work to pay for her school fees. Seeing her determination, her parents finally agreed to pay for her education.

After passing the high school examinations, Santosh Yadav went to Jaipur for further education. She joined Maharani College and got a room in Kasturba Hostel. Living in the hostel, she used to watch people climbing the Aravalli Hills.

She could not resist herself from asking some mountaineers if she could join them. They gave a positive reply which encouraged her to take to climbing. She joined Uttarkashi Nehru Institute of Mountaineering after completing her college semester in Jaipur.

Santosh never looked back thereafter. She went on an expedition every year which matured her climbing skills very fast. She scaled Mt Everest at the age of twenty and became the youngest woman in the world to achieve the feat.

She impressed her seniors with qualities like iron will, physical toughness and mental endurance. She was very helpful to the co-climbers. During the 1992 Everest mission, she managed to save another climber who would have died if she had not shared her oxygen with him.

Within a year, she scaled Mt Everest a second time which secured a unique place for her in the annals of mountaineering. The Indian government recognised her achievement by awarding her with one of the nation’s top honours, the Padmashri.

Santosh Yadav is a great environmentalist. She collected and brought down 500 kilograms of garbage from the Himalayas which shows her concern for the environment.

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