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Briton plans Everest balloon feat

Mount Everest
Everest: The world's highest peak  


KATHMANDU, Nepal -- British adventurer David Hempleman-Adams plans to set the world record for a solo flight in a hot air balloon over Mount Everest.

Hempleman-Adams, 44, will take off in an open-basket balloon from the 16,000 ft. (4,870 metres) Rongbuk Monastery in Tibet, he told Reuters news agency.

He will fly as high as 35,000 ft. (10,670 metres) across the Himalayas over the Everest summit into Nepal.

"Getting the right track and wind speed for the take-off would be the most difficult part of the entire journey," said Hempleman-Adams who leaves Nepal for Tibet on Saturday.

"It is up to God," he said. "Up to now he has been very good to me."

He will use oxygen tanks and wear a parachute for the two to six hour flight, planned for sometime after September 20.

The balloon will also carry mountain climbing gear and enough food for 10 days in cases he crashes or has to parachute out of the balloon onto the mountain.

Hempleman-Adams has previously been to both the North and South Poles.

A decade ago, two teams of two people each made the first balloon flight over Everest, but so far no one has successfully completed the task alone.






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