Dream Team Walk About

April 29

Still down at EBC recovering and waiting for a couple days of light snow showers to clear, giving us our Rotation 2 window. Our fearless leaders estimate a May 2 leave. In the meantime, we have all sorts of activities keeping us occupied:

– Movie matinee’s in our warm dining tent. Ram, our Sherpa wait staff ensured we have popcorn to accompany.

– HIKES: Yesterday, we hiked back down valley, then up Kalapathar (18,200 ft approx). This is a favorite trekker hike, outside of Gorak Shep, giving steep incline and a gorgeous view of the top of Everest.  (FUN FACT: you cannot see the top of Everest from Base Camp). I recall hiking to Kalapathar, as a trekker, twice before, and doing well at a steady pace, but thinking “Damn, that got my lungs going”. However, this go round, felt like a nice stretch of the legs only! Amazing how  coming down a little in 02 will increase your capabilities.

On the way down, 1/2 team headed straight back for EBC, and were met by a flock of fast moving Himalayan Snow Cocks. I am so jelly I missed that, because the “Himalayan Snow Cock” jokes are also a constant source of entertainment. They couldn’t tell is it was a turf war or a mating ritual, but the HSC wanted the humans out of the way. The other 1/2 of team (myself included) stopped by Gorak Shep to refill on a few normal supplies (Coke, Sprite, Pringles). And a few surprise “must have” items. San Miguel acquired a little whiskey and I found a 2013 Cabernet/Merlot/Shiraz blend (20% chance it is drinkable, but I’m feeling lucky).

Now get this, It was meant to be mine! The bottle was 4500 Rupees (approx $37 USD). I brought a little pocket change with me for a soda, but had NO idea they would have wine restocked. I nervously counted what was in my zip lock bag stash… AND I HAD EXACTLY 4500 RUPEES!!! Screw a Sprite, momma’s gettin’ her red happy juice!!

– SUMMIT DAY GEAR AND DISCUSSIONS. With extra time between rotations, why not start talking the in depth reality of High Camps and Summit Day

– BOOGER BEARS/SALIVA GLACIER- Mua’ Dib shared pictures and stories of the waterfall of frozen snot/condensation/ moisture that collects down the front of your down suit while using the oxygen mask on summit day. Mmmmm, so sexy! In addition, apparently the output valve of the mask will freeze up, requiring someone else to take off their mask, grab you by the head and blow into the output to break it up. Therefore, blowing all your snot and saliva back attcha! Who wants to make out after that? Ha! Gotta do what ya gotta do for GLORY!

– Cleaning and organizing tent and gear (constant task). Start getting Camp 3/Summit Push, gear separated out. This will be taken up by our support team a couple days before we push

Tonight, the clouds and snowfall will keep us a bit warmer at night. Cannot wait to snuggle into my sleeping bag and listen to an hour of new audiobook selection, “Endurance”, by Scott Kelly.

Tomorrow, stretch the legs on an icy walk-about and dial in our down suits! Ex. Ensure harness and boot fit, where to stash things, how on earth to go to the bathroom, etc!

About the author : Kim

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