SHE has done it!

An outdoor adventurer has achieved her lifetime ambition of conquering Mount Everest.

Melanie Southworth, aged 48, of Ramsbottom, jetted off to Nepal in March after month of training in Spain.

The explorer conquered the world's tallest mountain in the early hours of one morning earlier this week and news of her achievement was revealed as she began her summit down, accompanied by a Sherpa.

Speaking to Tower FM during her descent from the 8,848m summit, Melanie joked about the dark view because she got to the top in the middle of the night.

"We summited at 2.36am, so I am going to frame a black picture and, when people ask me what it is, I will say 'that is the summit of Everest from what I can see'," said Melanie.

She added: "It was far too cold. It must have been at least -30C easily, but the view was still beautiful in its own way."

The keen mountaineer has been attempting the challenge for three years but was hampered by tragedy.

Melanie first took Everest in 2014 but her trek was called off after 16 Sherpas died in an avalanche.

Disaster struck again last year when, while preparing for a second attempt, Melanie endured a devastating earthquake, which killed more than 8,000 people and injured more than 21,000.

At the time of the earthquake, Melanie was an hour's walk south of Everest Base Camp and managed to get back to safety, unharmed by any aftershocks.

In her interview with Tower FM said: "It only took me three years (to achieve my goal). It is a very, very big hill.

"It was an overwhelming feeling when I got to the top.

"I've read a lot of books about Everest and one of thing interesting things I've learned is that, at the times, you feel like you're near the summit when you're nowhere the summit, but for me the summit came quicker than I thought it would."

While Melanie said the accomplishment was the biggest moment of her life, she added that it will always be overshadowed by the tragic death of four other climbers — one from Australia and three from India — on May 22.

Often, climbers see the bodies of people who have died, because they are too high up to be recovered.

Melanie said: "You read all the accounts of Everest and it's something that we're all aware of and climb here that there’s usually double-digit deaths (each year) for various reasons.

"On our summit night, you never fully understand how you're going to react to death in this environment.

"To actually be involved in seeing the demise of people on Everest is something you can never prepare yourself for.

"Hopefully there won't be any more deaths. It's part and parcel of the environment."

After reaching Everest Base Camp and spending a few days relaxing, Melanie is heading home.

She said: "I can't wait to get back, I've had such tremendous support from friends and family.

"I always joke that my first meal when I come to Ramsbottom will be chips and gravy and a pint at the Shoulder of Mutton in Holcombe."