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Bayfield climber reports on Mount Everest adventure

Lori Schneider of Bayfield, wearing an oxygen mask during her recent climb of Mount Everest, will be welcomed home with a parade in Bayfield at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, followed by a community celebration at the Bayfield Pavilion. Submitted photo

Lori Schneider of Bayfield recently completed a treacherous climb to the top of the world, becoming the first person living with multiple sclerosis to summit Mount Everest.

Everest was the last leg of her "seven summits" quest to climb the highest peak on each continent. Schneider returned to the United States on Tuesday and was visiting family in Janesville, Wis., on Wednesday.

"It was emotional for me to finally complete this after 16 years," Schneider said. "It was a long haul and exciting all the way."

Schneider spent nearly two months climbing Everest with 14 team members and five guides. She said only nine made it to the summit.

"It was exciting emotionally to be up there after 11 hours of very slow moving and some dangerous terrain," she said.

She reached the summit at 8:20 a.m. May 23.

She was able to take a few photos in the whiteout conditions before they had to make their descent minutes later because of dangerous weather.

"It's extreme beauty, extreme danger, extreme weather," Schneider said. "All the elements combined together make it a pretty inhospitable place to be, but if you can just glimpse it for a moment, it's pretty amazing."

Schneider said that on the day she topped Everest, her friends in Bayfield climbed along with her.

"My friends in Bayfield helped me for nine months before the climb, climbing up Mount Ashwabay," Schneider said. "It was so wonderful to have their support and to hear that the day I was summiting, that they all went back to Ashwabay and did the climb."

Her father Neal Schneider helped start her seven summits challenge 16 years ago, and via satellite phone on the summit of Mount Everest he was with her in the end.

"I called him and I said I made it," she said. "He's certainly been my climbing rock all these years."

Now Schneider wants to be a rock for others. She hopes to take a group of people diagnosed with multiple sclerosis to Mount Kilimanjaro in Africa to attempt that climb.

"And give others a chance to feel the power that I feel when I climb and give them a little bit of their strength and courage back," she said.

Bayfield will welcome Schneider back home with a parade Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. followed by a community celebration at the Bayfield Pavilion.

Go to Schneider's Web site for more from her climb: