Michelle Kalberer, Klean Co-Owner, trained for her Breast Cancer Fund Climb Against the Odds for over six months, and this June, she joined a group of fellow climbers at the base of 14,179-foot Mt. Shasta to start her climb. After having completed several training hikes and raising as much as possible for the Breast Cancer Fund, Michelle was as prepared as ever to complete her goal. With a personal connection to the disease itself, she was committed and motivated to supporting the Breast Cancer Fund's efforts toward breast cancer prevention; and she was determined to make it to the top. We caught up with Michelle about how the climb itself went. Here's what she had to say:
I made it! All the way to the top of Mt. Shasta with 14 Flags in hand (and a tutu from one breast cancer survivor). This adventure was not just about climbing a mountain; it was a journey with others inspired to take action, to make the world change just enough to protect the next generation. We came from three countries, nine states and 20 different cities. We shared personal stories, laughed and cried with each other and surrendered to the mountain on our big day. All of us reached a personal summit, and I am so proud of my new friends for their courage, their drive and their commitment to making our world a better place!
It look me nine hours to make it up to the top (from 2:15 a.m. to 11:15 a.m.), one foot in front of the other. Watching the sun come up behind the mountain, casting a humbling shadow across the valley, was absolutely mesmerizing! I was so excited to get to the top that I had a hard time going slowly! I did not expect the tears to flow when I rounded the final corner to step up to the summit. What an amazing feeling it was to raise my hands as high as I could get them, and to let my flags from so many wave in the breeze above my head. I never expected to be moved like I was. I am truly changed forever.
One last light comment – glissading down 3,000 feet of mountain kicks some serious ass!