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American, 13, shatters Everest record


BEIJING – A 13-year-old American boy became the youngest climber to reach the top of Mount Everest today, breaking the former record as part of his quest to climb the highest peaks on all seven continents.

A spokesman for Jordan Romero says the boy’s team called him by satellite phone from the summit of the world’s highest mountain, 29,035 feet above sea level.

The teenager with long curly hair – who climbed Mount Kilimanjaro in Africa when he was 10 years old – says he was inspired by a painting in his school hallway of the seven continents’ highest summits.

“Every step I take is finally toward the biggest goal of my life, to stand on top of the world,” Jordan said on his blog earlier.

The former record for the youngest climber to scale Everest had been held by Temba Tsheri, of Nepal. He reached the peak at age 16.

“I’m just very proud of him,” Jordan’s mother told the Associated Press by telephone just before he reached the peak, as she watched his progress on a live GPS tracker online.

Jordan, from Big Bear, Calif., was climbing Everest with his father, his father’s girlfriend and three Sherpa guides. He left for the peak from the base camp on the Chinese side.

Unlike neighboring Nepal, the other approach to Everest, China has no age limit for climbers. Jordan registered with Chinese officials in April, said Zhang Mingxing, secretary general of China Tibet Mountaineering Association.