Adventures of a mother of 7 – Johanna Gustafsson

Because it's there!

When 8 years old I learned about Mount Everest, and ever since I have dreamed about climbing up there. When I became middle-aged and sensible I thought that it's impossible.

2012 when I turned 50 I suddenly got this crazy idea to fulfill my childhood dream. Now, almost 2 years later, after studying, training, researching & finding solutions, it seems possible!

If things go well I will summit in May 2014, if things don't go well I will hopefully do it another year. If you want to follow me vie e-mail updates you can subscribe to them.

Queen of the Hill

Queen of the Hill

Who am I?

An athletic engineer and a mother of 7 children who enjoys nature and sports. I am not old, but my joints are getting worn out from lifelong use (doing sports during seven pregnancies was apparently a killer), so I need to be selective about the activities I do. Not too much running anymore.

I work as a consultant in Innotiimi-ICG, contact me for very special development programs or presentations. 


About Mom

"She's crazy - but in a pretty good way"

"She has made our legs strong - dad takes more care of cooking"

"She yells a lot - Go Mom!"

"Skiing or hiking with her, there's no turning back - ever!"

"She always talks a lot - and explains and explains."

"Of course she wants to climb Everest - what else would she do with that mountain?"

"She is maybe from another planet!"

In Mallorca European championships 1999, with 5 kids. We took them out for a few tacks!

In Mallorca European championships 1999, with 5 kids. We took them out for a few tacks!


Optimist - started sailing when I was 6, several national championships and went to the world championships.

Tornado - my favorite boat ever, a quick and agile catamaran. We aimed for the Barcelona olympics 1992. Got married instead.

Laser Radial - in 2008 I decided to try an olympic class again, but found myself to be too small for that class.

Match Racing - the mental game of racing one opponent suits me well. If match racing was still in the olympics I would surely continue that. We were third in the national championship 2011 with Jessica and Jannina, our oldest daughters.

Other boats - For fun we have chartered big catamarans & monohulls in different places around the world. The sailship "Helena" is a favorite too.

Training in the Suvisaaristo archipelago in 2009

Training in the Suvisaaristo archipelago in 2009

Other Sports

Swimming - occasional hobby. In a 2-month project in the fall of 2013 I got a couple of medals in the nationals and broke two national records. Well, only for ladies 50 years old.

Biathlon - my winter-exercise for sailing, it's mental and physical. Had to stop it when always pregnant or breastfeeding.

Orienteering - my adult age hobby that suits the whole family. No big successes in Finland, but a few medals from France.


Ski Orienteering - I started it right after the birth of the 3rd kid, a really fun sport! I have some masters world championship medals.

Skiing - my favorite wintertime sport. The best is skating early in the morning in springtime on a hard icy crust on the soft snow, without any tracks, right through the forest.

Biking - I love my best bike so much that my husband is a bit jealous of it. He thinks I treat it better than him or that we have more fun together than with him :)

Swimming with the two first babies, way back in 1994.

Swimming with the two first babies, way back in 1994.

Recent family photo in Portugal, 2013

Recent family photo in Portugal, 2013

Johanna Gustafsson – the Everest project