LIMERICK climber Mark Quinn will attempt to become the first Irish person to summit two of the world’s highest mountains on a single expedition this summer.
The Rhebogue man, who became the youngest Irish person to climb Mount Everest in 2011, has launched a bid to climb Gasherbrum I and II - better known as K4 and K5 - this summer.
Quinn, who raised funds for the Shane Geoghegan Trust and placed a badge in memory of the murdered Garryowen player at the summit of Everest, will raise funds for mental health charity Headstrong and international aid organisation Médecins Sans Frontières on his latest expedition.
He will be will be the first Irish person to climb the mountains if successful.
Representatives of the charities were in attendance at the launch of the challenge in the Savoy Hotel this Monday, hosted by Mayor of Limerick Cllr Gerry McLoughlin, who praised Mark for his endeavours and said he would like to wish him a “very safe journey”, a sentiment no doubt appreciated by mum Fiona, who was in attendance at the reception.
“If you are involved in an adventure sport, it calls for caution and safety, as your mother would no doubt agree, and we do hope that you come back safe to us,” said Mayor McLoughlin of the former Crescent College Comprehensive student.
Mark admitted that climbing the 8,000-plus metre mountains would be “tough”.
“The Karakoram range does have weather that is that bit more savage, but you are not climbing on those savage days ideally, you wait for your good weather windows and go then,” he said, stressing it was “a completely different sort of challenge” to Everest.
“The main challenges will be of more of a technical nature,” he said.
The 50 day expedition, leaving on June 10, will be led by Dutch guide Arnold Coster, who led the Everest climb.
Quinn said the involvement of sponsors Tayto, North Face, the Altitude Gym, Ovo Studios and River Deep, would mean all money raised will go to the charities directly.
To donate and for updates see www.facebook.com/mqclimbing.