Emily Thompson and her obsession to climb the next mountain in sight

WE TALK to Emily Thompson about her passion to climb and summit the biggest mountains in the world.

Emily Thompson

Emily Thompson was encouraged to explore the outdoors from a young age by parents who had a passion for adventure.


EMILY THOMPSON has been obsessed with climbing mountains for as long as she can remember. She reached the summit of Ben Nevis at 17 which spurred her on to finish her Duke of Edinburgh award and seek a career in mountaineering.


In 2013 Emily climbed to the top of Mount Kilimanjaro and in 2015 she spent time in Nepal where she attempted to summit Mera Peak. In this exclusive interview she talks to us about those expeditions as well as her many other adventures.


To find out more about her Emily and her experience of some of the world’s most famous mountains you can follow her blog at tinkerbelladventures.wordpress.com.


Emily Thompson

One of Emily’s biggest achievements has been reaching the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro.


When did you first become passionate about the mountains and the outdoors? 


I became passionate about adventure when I was quite young. I was really lucky as my parents took us hiking and camping a lot when me and my brother were young and while I don’t remember the first mountain I climbed, at 17 I climbed Ben Nevis and made the decision that I had to finish my Duke of Edinburgh award before I got too old. I didn’t realise at the time how life-changing that would be. The year after I completed the award I started volunteering to teach other young people outdoor skills. Over the years I became obsessed with ticking off mountains and working towards my summer Mountain Leader award.

Being a summit bagger is often something that’s sniggered at by outdoor enthusiasts, but I love it as I love finding new places to visit and not doing the same thing twice. So a long list of mountains to summit provides endless challenges.
I love sharing my passion for the outdoors, my favourite moment will always be when I tool a group from Inner City Manchester to the Lakes and while they struggled over the Langdale pikes in the rain one of the girls said it was magic to be able to touch the clouds.


How long have you been hiking and climbing and could you tell us about some of your highlights enjoying the sports and some of the places they have taken you to?


I’ve been climbing on and off for about ten years though not regularly until two years ago when I found a regular partner to climb with and in the last year I’ve got involved with three different mountaineering clubs – the North of England is a great place for linking with like-minded people and getting out to local venues and trips away.


Adventures overseas started relatively recently with the toughest route to date being the GR20 in Corsica, 14 days of scrambling along the 180km route with over 1000m ascent and descent every day. It is an amazing route and virtually on our doorstep so not one to be missed.


I love climbing mountains though and so after reaching the top of Kilimanjaro in 2013 I really wanted to do proper mountaineering and challenge myself. I spent December 2015 in Nepal and summiting Mera Peak – we didn’t make it to the summit due to poor weather but the thrill of knowing I could push myself that high and hard drives me further. Knowing I can cope with the extreme cold was also satisfying meaning there’s no limits to what I could do next!


Tell us about the idea behind tinkerbelladventures.wordpress.com and what can our readers expect from the website?


I started  tinkerbelladventures.wordpress.com to share my trek up Kilimanjaro with friends and continued to use it as a space to share my adventures. I hope that I inspire other people to be adventurous however big or small.


Emily Thompson

Emily is hoping to climb Mont Blanc this summer.


What exciting challenges or plans do you have set for the rest of the year and beyond?


I’m planning a lot of trad-climbing this summer to push myself and I’m in the Alps in the summer hopefully achieving some alpine routes, maybe Mont Blanc if the weather is kind but if not there’s loads of amazing routes in the area. I have lots of amazing places in mind where I want to trek and climb mountains but who knows what will come up next.


I used to have a map of the world on my wall when I was little which I covered in pins when I’d visited somewhere – the map has gone but the urge to cover it in pins is still there. I rarely visit a place more than once as there’s too much in the world to visit – but I know I’ll go back to Nepal one day as it is an amazing place and so many amazing routes to do.


My bucket list is never ending and if someone presents me with a challenge I’ll try it. I like to find the edges of what I’m capable of and push them. Most of my adventures lead to new, tougher ones. Adventure has to push me mentally as well as physically which is why I rate three days in the jungle in Cambodia as tough as the GR20 as I found leeches a nightmare to cope with!


Adventure also provides me with distance from all the buzz and noise of life and the headspace to just be. There’s nothing more satisfying than running away with a tent for a weekend and I know I have a limit of a few weeks before I need to just go.

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