Saraswati Thapa, 19, grew up poor in Bajhang, in Nepal's far west region. Her parents work their barely productive fields year-round, but they do not yield enough to feed the family for even six months. This is not an unusual story -- many young women and their families live in extreme poverty in the region. But Thapa was determined to be different. She decided to join a team of daring young women out to do something that would take their nation's breath away.
Thapa is part of Mission Saipal, a team aspiring to reach the summit of 7,031-meter Mt. Saipal later this year.