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One-Legged Skier Scales Africa's Highest Peak And Sets Sights On Able-Bodied Ski Record
By Dave Reynolds, Inclusion Daily Express
September 22, 2005

MOUNT KILIMANJARO, TANZANIA--Australian Paralympic gold medal ski champion Michael Milton this week climbed to the top of Africa's tallest peak, Mount Kilimanjaro.

Milton, 32, spent 36 hours -- much of it in the dark -- climbing to the 19,340 foot (5895 meter) summit with his sister, Jennie. The pair battled sub-zero temperatures, high winds and dust storms to do what Milton described as the hardest thing he's ever done.

"There were lots of tears when we finally reached the summit and it meant so much to do it together," he said.

Milton's next achievement could tower over his Kilimanjaro climb, however.

Milton, who lost one leg when he had cancer at age 9, plans to attempt to break the alpine speed record set in 1997 by able-bodied Australian skier Nick Kirshner. Last April, Milton was clocked at 210.4 kilometers per hour. Kirshner's record is 212.26 kilometers per hour.

"I've still got some major improvements in me and I certainly feel with such a small gap -- less than 2kph -- that it's very, very possible," Milton recently told the Australian Associated Press.

"I'm really excited as an athlete with a disability about the potential to hold an Australian open record."

Milton is Australia's most successful winter Paralympian with 10 medals, including six gold medals. Next spring in Turin, Italy, he will defend four alpine ski racing Paralympic titles for the slalom, giant slalom, super G and downhill.

"One-legged skier conquers Mt Kilimanjaro" (The Age)
"One-legged skier eyes able-bodied record" (AAP via The Age)

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