Well this is it, my final post from the safety and warmth of my home in Barcelona. I have been racing around the city today buying up little last minute items I had forgotten or wanted replaced. The ‘City bag’ and duffels all packed, everything just fit in and the combined weight is 45Kgs which is a concern as that means I need to carry 15kgs in my rucksack when we get the flight from Kathmandu to Lukla. (to keep the duffels at 15kg each)
I had a solid final training session this morning with Gonçalo Training, who reminded me that no matter how fit I think am, there is always more to give!
What’s in store?
Below is a rough itinerary of our expedition.
Tomorrow morning at 11am I will board a Turkish Airways flight from Barcelona to Kathmandu with a transit in Istanbul.
I will arrive in Kathmandu on Wednesday morning (6am), head straight to Hotel Tibet in the Thamel district of the city and await the rest of the team before we no doubt have a briefing from the lead guides that evening.
The next day is preparation. The Thamel district seems to have a plethora of mountaineering shops dotted around where we can replace or buy extra items on our guide’s advice after they have reviewed our kit. We will then probably have one last restaurant meal and spend our second and last night in the hotel.
The next morning we fly to Lukla (weather permitting).
The next 11 to 12 days are spent trekking from Tenzing-Hillary Airport in Lukla (2860m) through the Khumbu valley slowly gaining 2500m in altitude as we head towards our destination — Everest Base Camp (5364m).
Each label on the map is a stop for one to three days. We will be staying in accommodation called ‘Tea Houses’ which I believe are basic mountain refuge type huts. We could be based in these Tea Houses for two or more days as we go off trail carrying out acclimatisation treks along the way. I believe there are patches of mobile phone signal throughout the valley and some Teas Houses have charging facilities. Having said that, my first week could be completely disconnected so I don’t have to worry about keeping devices charged and also so I myself can disconnect. So if there are no updates for a week or two don’t worry! (Mum and Dad) ☺
It became real yesterday when I dropped Alejandra off at the airport for her work trip with a tearful goodbye, came back to an empty home, Skyped my family in Australia and said goodbye to them. When I think about it, saying goodbye to my parents is a little odd as I already live 13,000 kms away from them, I will be geographically closer to them in Nepal and I will speak to them while I am on the hill but I suppose the weight of what’s ahead amplifies the situation.
Off to sleep now for my last night on my king size Tempur mattress. Oh how I will miss it.
Over and out.