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Mags summits Mount Kili

Mags Natasen with local guide Simon who nudged her to keep going. Picture: Supplied

Mags Natasen with local guide Simon who nudged her to keep going. Picture: Supplied

Published Jul 19, 2018

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Durban -  Despite the challenges she faced along her way to climb Mount Kilimanjaro, Mags Natasen emerged victorious and summited the highest mountain in Africa, on Nelson Mandela Day. 

The single mother of two from Joburg was part of Trek4Mandela Executive Climb. 

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The campaign aims to provide sanitary pads to 200 girls from underprivileged areas - not just as a one-off as is usually the case, but throughout their high school careers.

Speaking to POST via Whatsapp messages Natasen said that she would never have gotten past Gillman's Point without a local guide named Simon. 

She said it was not all smooth sailing and apart from icy conditions, Natasen said she suffered headaches, nosebleeds and bad malaise- which is similiar to hangover symptoms where your hands and legs won't move. 

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And while she thought about quitting at times, she thought about how far she had come. 

After all this was a childhood dream. 

“When I was eight, my teacher put up a poster of Mount Kili and I thought ‘wow’, I want to climb that. But over the years, the timing was always wrong or something would get in the way," she told POST during an earlier interview. 

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Read: Mags has a mountain to climb

She added that Simon was a real motivator. 

"He carried by daypack.... gave me panados, held my hand and gave me heat warmers. But more importantly he nudged me to keep going."

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She said some of her fellow trekkers had to quit when nausea, vomiting, visual disturbances or hallucinations kicked in.

"I was grateful I had no nausea or hallucinations."

Natasen said she also had plenty of rest. 

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