Saturday, May 16, 2009

Back in Dingboche

Today we trekked from Gorak Shep to Dingboche - a hike that took us two days going up.  We lost about three thousand feet of elevation.  The air is thicker and warmer at 14+K.  I'm not complaining.
We had some knee buster hills to navigate today, but you know what?  I was in the first group to finish!  In fact, I made it to camp first - woohooooo!  Steve Beatty came in second and he said I whupped some butt today - that was nice of him.
Tndi is our lead Sherpa on the trail and he says to "walk slowly," but his idea of slowly is a fast pace.  It was foggy and snowy up on the ridge we walked most of the last 1/3 of the way, so I didn't want to lose sight of that orange pack and I kept up with him.  I'm still not over my cold, but I feel much stronger today - especially after that climb up to 18,220 feet yesterday. 
There wasn't a lot of scenery to photograph today after lunchtime since we were fogged in the rest of the way to Dingboche.  The mist has its own charms, but I had put my camera away already.  Several others probably got some fantastic pics, though.
We're heading down, down, down.  We fly out of Lukla on the 20th at 6:30 am.  Tomorrow we stop somewhere this side of Namche Bazaar.  I don't remember the other stops, but our last night will be in Lukla.
I can't believe we're on the homeward stretch of the trip.  I'm still processing all the experiences we've had and the accomplishments for me personally.  I honestly didn't know I could do this.  I thought I could, but I wasn't sure.  If anything in my life is to be a confidence booster, this trek should sure fill the bill. 
My previous confidence boosters also involved mountains, but in South Africa.  It's hard to describe the sense of achievement when one does something so physically demanding that you would never have dreamed of attempting it on your own.  In South Africa I had my good friends the Laidlers to guide the way.  Here, it's been the organization of Jon Miller and Chris Marquardt and our excellent staff of Sherpas from Mountain tribes to help me find my way.  But, each step was my own and I feel damn good about that.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

congrats, Andi & Steve, on accomplishing your goals!

now you both, and all those involved with the Hubble telescope repairs, have much to celebrate.

safe trip home to all!