Junko Tabei was the first woman to climb Mount Everest, the highest peak in the world, in 1975. Before her death in 2016, Tabei also became the first woman to conquer the “seven peaks”, the tallest mountains of the five continents: Kilimanjaro in Africa, Denali in North America, Aconcagua in South America Carstensz Pyramid in New Guinea, Vinson in Antarctica and Everest in Asia. Tabei is famous for breaking stereotypes about women, both in her culture and abroad. This mountaineering pioneer began to make history in the 1970s when she became the first woman to climb the summit of Everest.
Tabei was born in 1939 in a small town in Fukushima, to a family of seven children. It was during her childhood, during a school trip to Mount Asahi in the mountain range, that she discovered the pleasure of mountainous nature. Passionate about mountaineering, she continues to learn at a time when mountaineering clubs in Japan are prohibited for women. She founded the Ladies Climbing Club in 1969, paving the way for Japanese women. This little woman, 1.5m tall, is an example of courage and determination. Her legacy not only serves the cause of women, it has paved the way for understanding and loving nature.