Trek 24-25 Phaking, Lukla and Kathmandu
A couple of big days walking down then up then down again. Sherpas sang and danced for us as we descended, became warmer, more healthy and happier! We gave away lots of books and clothes to the porters and Sherpas as we left Lukla and ended the trek in the Rumdoodle Bar in Kathmandu where we left a footprint on the wall.
Trek 20 23 Dingboche, Tengboche and Nachme Bazaar
Down we go! Not so cold! Pass through villages with new found respect for the life of these people. Saw the oldest monastery (Tengboche) in the region and walked picking up rubbish as a way to give back to the region. The hills around Namche dont seem quite as high any more by comparison. A shower made us feel half human again!
Trek 17-19 Gorek Shep and Everest and back to Loboche
It was cold, windy, and we are at the top of the world (well as high as I will ever go) Cant see the top of Everest from the bottom of Everest and yet it is only a little over 3000m away. Walked on the Kumbu Glacier, witnessed an ice fall from the great Kumbu Icefield and saw lots of Mani stones and tombs to honour the dead.
Trek 15-16 Cho la Pass to Jhong La Base Camp then onto Loboche
Jum Jum is Nepalese for lets go! We are climbing for over 3 hours then descend to the lunch stop before walking on to the camp at Jhong la base camp where the climbers are preparing to ascend so saw our first base camp. Still well over 5000m and walking up and down each day. Around the corner leaving Cho la valley and into the next valley to ascend to Everest region where witnessed a climber air lifted.
Trek 13-14 Tanak and base of Cho la pass
After walking across the Ngozumba Glacier, and up three more hills we reached the base of Cho la Pass which was the biggest challenge. The camp was all rock, -10 and desolate. Snow cocks try to forage for food, and the plant life is small and sparse as we are over 5000m night and day now.
Trek 10-12 Gokyo Lakes, Gokyo Ri
The toughest time for me reaching 5759m. Hard to get breath and a bit sick. Bugger!!! Onto the drugs and keep walking! Plenty of stones and beautiful lakes over 250m deep. Cold as with a breeze of about 40knots but the views are worth it. There are three lakes and two passes in this district with full Himalayan views including Everest.
Trek 7-9 Portse Tenga, Dole, Machhermo
Wonderful days of walks to over 4000m through long traverses, villages, and up and down. Great mountain views of Ama Dalbum, nd some of the great 6000+ mountains. Vegetation starting to change, Himalayan Tar (deer) visible along with lots of rocks, the river and many people. Found no trace of the Yeti though saw where it had been!
Trek Day 4-6 Namche Bazaar
Up 700m in one morning and into a lodge to acclimatise for 2 nights. Group dynamics starting to cut in, people getting sick and we are trying to work out what we need to buy as last stop for any shops, washing, bathing. Quick up hill walk to keep us going followed by a slide show, museum visit and relaxation.
Trek Day 1-3 Kathmandu; Lukla; Ghat; Monjo
We flew from Kathmandu on a Nepalese Parachute plane because of the crash as Lukla and landed on the very short and narrow air strip at 2,800m. Mani and 28 porters and Sherpas got us trekking to Ghat (2 hours) then onto Monjo where we saw the first glimpses of snow covered mountains but also many Mani stones, the people carrying loads of 60-80kg on their backs with head straps and Zopkios (half Yak and half Cow).
Back in and around Kathmandu it was relaxing with a hint of trepidation to visit places I had already seen with the girls as they arrived for the trek. Loud dinners, and lots of laughter.
Day 10-15 Tibet
At over 3600m Lhasa was a mass with army and police. From the Himalaya Hotel I could see the mountains, trees but few people. Told to be back at the hotel by 7pm was not a curfew made everyone (except those who wanted to be questioned) be indoors after dark. My thoughts are this is a place of persecution and a society imprisoned. The Tibetan plateau was remarkable and the flight from Kathmandu the best ever with full views of Everest and the Himalayas. In Lhasa, Johkang Temple, Sera Monastery along with Depung Monastery and the Potala Palace along with Dali Lama 14th Summer Palace were all great to see and each afternoon I would take a long slow walk around the major sights and stand and watch and be watched.
Day 7-9 Royal Chitwan National Park
Fabulous to spend some time at the beautiful Dwarikas hotel prior to flying to Bharatpur to spend a couple of days at Royal Chitwan National Park. Good for elephant rides but nothing else except we bathed the elephant which was fun.
Day 4-6 Looking around Kathmandu Valley
The temples and views in the region are all worth a look, some being more memorable and days being weather dependent. The Everest flight was fabulous as we spent an hour flying up and back past all the major mountains in the Himalayas. Bhaktapur an ancient town, and the Shangrila was good for vistas and lunch.
The first steps towards the journey began with saying all the goodbyes, sitting in a window seat for the flight then arriving into Kathmandu and transferring to Dwarikas where we were treated like royalty. It was amazing and we were spoilt with flowers, fruit, cake and a red dot and little Hindu ceremony. On my birthday I got to walk around the Bodhnath Stupa which was also great and I was treated to a room of 50s presents and a cake all the way from Australia.
It's the 8th....My goodness I thought this date would never come!!
I have waited and planned for nearly 10 years for this. The briefing is at 4.30pm and we fly to Lukla at 6.30 am on 10th after a sightseeing and bonding day around Kathmandu tomorrow. There are not many places I have not already seen (twice) however the group is blending nicely and we have the chance now to sus each other out without the stresses of alltitude. By Saturday we will be over 3,000 m and then have our first rest day on Sunday at 3,400. After Sunday we start the climb to Gokya then Cho La then Base Camp by about 20-25th October.It is very exciting. Sickness from the trek is no longer an issue to me. Tibet was 3,680 and I am now not worried as all that seems to happen to me is a headache remied quickly with pain killers. Last night the girls (who have all now arrived safely) wnet out for a traditional Nepalese dinner and had too much to drink......oooppppsss ...there were plenty of laughs though and we were well cared for by the staff. interestingly this resturant employed a lady who cannot speak or hear and she was beautiful. A great lesson in equity..Now for the last minute purchases. Ithink the ecomony in Nepal is now richer becuase of the girls........clothes, jewerelly, food and treking gear.....
We will have the adventure of a lifetime......We will be fine as surrounded by great ladies and competent guides.........
It is all like a dream, the hotel in Kathmandi where we have stayed for a week (including one day in the Royal suite) has been superb. The local food is spicy yet excellent and the locat culture is brilliant yet an interesting blend of Hindu, Buddism etc but they DO cohabitate well together. A few demonstrations to avoid but nothing major. We have walked and walked and walked, played golf, been to the scenic rim and a scenic flight over Everest.........eaten food local and otherwise and enjoyed the break...
Next we go to Chitwan National Park for elephant riding and Tiget stopping....then Ralph will go to Singapore to meet up with his children and I will go to Tibet. Tibet will be great and it is all organised.
We leave for the Trek on 8th October so that is day 1 if you are following.
One more sleep to go! It is the anticipation that get's to you the most. All the well wishing has been encouraging and I am very greatful of th elovely friendships I have. The white light will be out there and working well to us going...... It is apparently raining every day. I hope it does not rain on the first day...however gotta get wet at some time....maybe that is the chance to have a shower!! HEHE!! Next stop Singapore then Kathmandu.
We find out today how much we will have raised for the Australian Hymalayan Foundation. I hope it is a pleasant surprise.
It is exactly a month today until we are flying to Lukla and to say I am excited and nervous all at once is an understatement. Please I don't want to hear another story about being careful and what to take and what to do and what not to do...........AAARRRRRHHHHH.
It is all ahead of me and I am soooo looking forward to it.
With the support in place this trip is set to be mind blowing, life changing and a blast!!
See you at the top of the world!
It seemed yesterday I thought 2 months from the trek was close! WOW.....now I'm leaving next week. I am soooooo ready. The rest is academic!
Yesterday it was Mum's turn and the Bridge to Brisbane fun run for 10 km was on. Well what a load of fun puching the wheelchair up the gateway and then down the other side.
Now it is time for the leaving parties and farewell phone calls and packing.........yeap....two or three times to debulk right.
This is a dream for the past ten years. It has almost come to be true and I am inspired that people have decided to come along for the ride of a ife time.
How good will it be? Maybe not life changing of even pretty some days however, a jouney not to be missed.
Will I get there? Yeap...even if I crawl on my knees I will make it.
How will I feel when it is all over? Accomplished in my own skin.
Bring it on.
Walking, gym, weights, Pilates then questions, emails, Google, more shopping!!! It is starting to spin and my adrenalin level is matching this effort. With three weeks to go before goodbye Aust it is just an amazing feeling to think 10 years of having this as a goal will finally come to fruition.
I did a pre-pack last weekend and got really excited as the reality of this adventure struck me. I must take time to look around and enjoy the journey as it has been such a long time in waiting.
The girls are all pumped as well and we are out there fundraising. Im doing the Bridge to Brisbane next weekend pushing my Mum in her wheelchair (over the gateway bridge) WOW hope I dont let her go!!
Bring it ON!
It is all in the attitude hey!! I am feeling strong as I run up and down anything that looks like an upwards slope. I actually look forward to my daily walk! WOW! The little things that will help in this trek are now my priority, showers, toileting, drinking water, keeoing feet in good condition, keeping body in good condition keeping warm, keeping dry.....it is all happening at once.......It is only four weeks til I fly from Australia so need to get details from everyone about meeting times and places. This is exciting and I am really going to enjoy the journey. Can't wait really...
Location: Brisbane, Australia
Excited...Yeap quietly very satisfied with everything. I have been fundraising today and raised another $50 which is such a rewarding feeling.
Last week walked 12 km on Wed and found the steepest hill in Brisbane!!! I know it was only 1,100 feet above sea level but hey there is not much else here!!!
I don't think I will ever be fit for this but the trek is a spiritual journey as well as a physical one and I can reationalise anything!
Also have begun to pack and had my vaccination update, got the visa, and put a beautiful photo of Everest as my sceensaver on my computer. Sick hey!!!
The next fwe weeks will fly by and I will be back every week to update my pre-departure page with reflections.
With little under two months until the Everest Circuit Trek begins it is almost surreal to think this is possible. Will I make it? How hard will it be? Who will I meet? Will I be safe? Will I get sick? How will I go keeping up and will I have enough warm gear? So many unanswered questions but it is all in the journey and that adds to the excitement. I trust my healthy determination on this one..........