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Nine-Year-Old California Boy Becomes Youngest Person to Scale Argentina’s Aconcagua Mountain

Update Date: Dec 29, 2013 10:36 AM EST

Tyler Armstrong of Yorba Linda, a 9-year-old boy from Southern California has become the youngest person to reach the summit of Argentina’s Aconcagua Mountain. The mountain has the tallest peak in the Western and Southern hemisphere, measuring 22,841 feet.

Tyler was accompanied by his father Kevin and a Tibetan sherpa, Lhawang Dhondup who has climbed Mount Everest multiple times. The reached the summit on Christmas Eve where bitter cold have claimed more than 100 climbers’ lives.

“You can really see the world’s atmosphere up there. All the clouds are under you, and it’s really cold,” Tyler said, according to NY Daily News. “It doesn’t look anything like a kid’s drawing of a mountain. It’s probably as big as a house at the summit, and then it’s a sheer drop.”

Every year 7,000 people obtain permits to climb Aconcagua, among which only 30 percent of make the summit. Usually children below 14 were not allowed so the family had to approach an Argentine judge.

“Any kid can really do this. All they have to do is try. And set their mind to the goal,” added Tyler. Tyler worked out twice a day for 18 months in order to be fit for mountaineering.

“I think Tyler’s record speaks for itself and because I think he’s doing it for a good cause, he’s doing it to help other people, I think the judge recognized that,” said Tyler’s father who is an emergency medical technician according to NY Daily News.

“Most people think we as parents are pushing Tyler to do this, when it’s completely the opposite. I wouldn’t climb it if I didn’t have to, but my wife makes me do it to keep watch on him,” he added.

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