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Everest Base Camp Trek: April 23rd

Hel­lo every­one,
After a 4:30 a.m. wake­up call we all met in the lob­by of our supe­ri­or hotel, the Yak and Yeti. They packed up a boxed break­fast for us and had gourmet cof­fee wait­ing for us to shake off the sleep dust. We quick­ly orga­nized our gear into bags going to the moun­tain and bags stay­ing in the secure room of the hotel that we don’t need for the trek. We then jumped into 2 vans and head­ed for the airport.

Because our group num­bers 21 we couldn’t fit in one twin otter plane so flew out on the first 2 flights a short time lat­er for 40 min­utes to the town of Luk­la. Every­thing went smooth­ly with no tur­bu­lence and we were afford­ed some spec­tac­u­lar views of the ris­ing moun­tains, which are mere­ly bumps com­pared to what we hope to see as we trek up high in the com­ing days.

Upon land­ing we drank tea, water, and orga­nized our day­packs for the trek. We also had a chance to meet our awe­some local trekking staff, porters, cook, meal­time servers, and sir­dar. With our total num­ber now over 40 we are our own mobile village.

Our entourage com­plete, we began our trek to our des­ti­na­tion of the day-Phakd­ing. The pace was mod­er­ate, as the group wound its way through ver­dant forests and across sus­pen­sion bridges. The bridges are a bit boun­cy and criss­cross over the Dudh Khosi (“Milk Riv­er)”, which flows direct­ly off the glac­i­ers of Everest.

2 hours after leav­ing Luk­la we stopped for lunch where our head cook Dun­bar pre­pared us a deli­cious meal of grilled cheese sand­wich­es, fries, sal­ad, and fruit. Many mem­bers thought we were going to be eat­ing dal bhat the whole trip and were pleas­ant­ly sur­prised that Moun­tain Mad­ness is in fact staffed by foodies. 

Anoth­er hour of trekking and we reached our des­ti­na­tion to the beau­ti­ful vil­lage of Phakd­ing, over­look­ing the riv­er. Expect­ing more of a hos­tel like tea­house, the group was sur­prised we were stay­ing in rooms with beds that had clean sheets, pil­lows, show­ers, and flush toilets.

After rest­ing in the after­noon, we had tea at 4:00 p.m. with our trekking staff and played games, joked, laughed and got to know each oth­er more with­out the effects of jetlag.

At 6:00 p.m. Deana went over how we will be con­duct­ing the med­ical checks for the group each night dur­ing the trip, talked about AMS, and how to stay healthy each day. Then we took each mem­bers O2 lev­els as a base­line for the com­ing weeks and got ready for anoth­er deli­cious meal pre­pared by our cook con­sist­ing of a deli­cious brothy soup, fresh veg­eta­bles and pota­toes, lentils, a fab­u­lous fresh sal­ad, roast­ed chick­en, and peach­es and cream for dessert.

By then, we were all knack­ered and head­ed to bed. Every­one is healthy, hap­py, and excit­ed for the next leg of our adven­ture. Tomor­row we ascend 2700 feet to the vil­lage of Nam­che Bazaar. Thanks for fol­low­ing along.

Stew­art Wolfe