Time is flying here on the mountain! It is hard to believe we arrived on the 8th at Base Camp. Everest is so different to any other climb I have done, as it is a waiting and prepping game. Most of our time spent on the mountain is spent, acclimitizing, perfecting our skills, trying to stay healthly, and waiting for that perfect moment when we can go up. It is important to rest as well. We are headed up Kalapatar today to sleep at 5800m, this is all in preparation to help us get up to camp 1 next week in a reasonable amount of time.
Yesterday we had a much needed rest day at BC, where I was able to reorganize my tent, shower, practice knot tying, read, journal, and eat. It flew by though.
The day before that we got to go up on the glacier and get one forth of the way to camp 1. Our aim was to practice walking through the ice fall and also get used to crossing over the ladders. Luckily it was less scary than I thought it would be : ) The glacier did kick my butt though and it was a strenuous 3 hour climb up and about 1.5 hour climb down. The sun was on us on the glacier, which meant I was baking!! That is the thing about Everest, as quickly as it can freeze you, it can bake you too! Needless to say it was a good taste as to what lies ahead next week as we try to approach camp 1. We will go through about 3 rotations on the mountain, meaning I will go to camp 1 about 3 times, camp 2 about 3 times, camp 3 about 3 times, and camp 4 hopefully only once the nighte before our summit push sometime in late May.
My cold is much better, but I honestly it is hard to feel one hundred percent at 17,500 feet. I got rid of my cold, but then have caught some kind of stomach bug? Who knows, but not so fun and is really slowing me down : ( It should clear up in a few days as it has for others on the team. I am normally pretty healthy at home, so just hard to adjust. I am ok though and will keep pushing on : )
Mountaineering comes with its suffering...it is a continuous mental game and sometimes about how much you are willing to endure. With that said, you have to be smart and as our guides have been coaching us, knowing when your body is telling you it needs your care and attention.
On the flip side, it is beautiful up here...walking through the little of the ice fall we did kinda felt like I was in a dream. You really get an appreciation as to just how massive this mountain really is. She has been kind to us so far and I hope she will continue to do so :) I have 'pinch me moments" all the time, where I ask myself "are you really here?!? are you really doing this?!?" Maybe they will go away once I am all done.
So the next few days is about getting ready for camp 1 next week and it should take us anywhere from 7-10 hours to get up there. There are many different fitness levels on the team-some faster than others. Bottom line is you have to focus on you and what YOU can do, not what everyone else is doing. I have been taking my time on all the hikes and climbs we have done, as that is what has gotten me up all of the other mountains I have summitted. One foot in front of the other, one step at a time. Mountaineering is not a race, so slow and steady is your best bet :)
We met our personal Sherpas yesterday and I look forward to getting to know mine better over the next month or so. I have a lot to learn from him :) Again I cannot stress how incredible the Sherpas are...what they do is inspiration on its own.
As I am up here, I can't help but think about the future and what role this incredible journey will play in it :)
Big hugs and more to come soon. If you would like to support our efforts, please visit: www.climbtakeaction.com
A HUGE THANK YOU for all of your loving messages of encouragement and support...it keeps me going!!