Most teenage boys I know are quite content to hang out with their mates and have adventures via a games console, but not Jordan Romero, who plans to be the youngest to reach Mount Everest's summit.
If his bid next month is successful, he will smash the record, currently held by a 16-year-old from Nepal, and will also become the youngest person to scale the tallest peaks on all seven continents.
It's quite a feat and ParentDish caught up with him via email to find out how this adventurous teen was coping.
And it appears that, so far, he is enjoying the trip describing it as excellent: "So much to see along the way, the people are nice, the food is great and the Himalayas are amazing. I can't wait for the drive tomorrow to see more."
He's not alone on this adventure, his dad Paul and his step-mother Karen Lundgren are accompanying him. They are both experienced mountaineers and have been training him to ascend the 29,035ft peak.
I think it would be a rare teen who tried to do something so monumental without having family influence and Romero, from California, is no exception -- he credits his father with inspiring him to reach his goals.
And the reason climbing Everest is on that list of goals is simple; it's one of the seven summits and he wants to climb all of them and his tender age is not going to deter him.
"There is no reason to wait till I am older," Romero writes. "I have a great team right now and I am prepared for the climb."
It seems Romero is no stranger to achieving his dreams; when he was nine he set the goal of climbing the tallest mountain in the world and aged ten he reached the top of Mount Kilimanjaro – becoming the youngest person to do so.
In 2007 he conquered Australia's Mount Kosciuszko, Mount Elbrus in Europe and Mount Aconcagua. He's also been busy closer to home when he scaled North America's tallest mountain which is considered more technical than Everest. Last autumn he reached the summit of Oceania's Carstensz Pyramid.
Preparing for this latest adventure has been testing however: " Preparing is hard, there is soooo much gear to put together it has taken us months to prepare all of the gear," but he's enjoyed the travel and found crossing the border from Nepal to China interesting.
It's not all adventures though, he still has to study in between the preparations and travelling, with his step-mother helping him by making sure he sets aside time every day to do his school work.
While his kind of adventures are probably out of reach for the average teen he is still an inspiring role model and has encouraging words for them.
"They need to find a friend or family member who believes in them and can help them along the way," he writes. "Tell them to take a small step toward their dream every day. Don't listen to the people who don't believe in you. Find people who want to help you. ... I want kids and adults to see what I am doing and hopefully find their own goal and follow it. I want kids to move away from the video games and get outside, enjoy the outdoors and be healthy."
Many of the lessons he's learned from mountaineering have translated into his every day life.
"Climbing has taught me that I can do anything," Romero writes. "If I set my goals big, I can break it down into smaller pieces and get there one step at a time. Dream big and big things can happen."
Source: ParentDish US
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