This year marks the fifth anniversary of my trip to Nepal, the Himalayas, and Everest Base Camp. It seemed like a marker worth celebrating, and I couldn’t think of a better way to do so than by going back! And going back with Jon, Chris, and Monika again no less! But this will be no … [Read more…]
It’s ticked down to less than a month until the Everest Trek 2010 gets underway. While I won’t be participating in this year’s trek, I did at least want to offer a bit of advice to the next batch of trekkers based off of my experiences last year. I certainly can’t claim to be an … [Read more…]
Sleeping on a glacier… there’s an experience not many will ever get to have. And when it’s the Khumbu Glacier at the base of Mt. Everest, that’s all the rarer. I would give it my highest recommendation, with the advisory that it’s not for those that aren’t up for a bit of roughing it. It’s a hell of a thing to be able to say you’ve done, but it’s also just about as far from comfort as one could get. At least without beginning to actually climb Everest.
I made it! I actually did it! I was sitting at Base Camp at Mt. Everest. It came at the end of a long and grueling day, after two weeks filled with struggles and challenges, and months of planning before that… but all the pieces came together, all the hard work paid off, and there I sat. At Base Camp. On Mt. Everest. With Jon Miller. On The Rest Of Everest.
May 14th, 2009. Now that was a long day. To give you an idea: The previous episode, this episode, and the one that follows it will all cover this one, single day. Three episodes of The Rest Of Everest just to fit it all in! But it was both our longest day and, though I … [Read more…]
There’s a wonderful window into a couple of the best aspects of the Everest Trek in this episode. First, the so-called “morning update” ritual that Jon and I did most mornings. (Also known as “The Jon & John Morning Show”.) Second, the amazing and random people we met along the way. While not all as notable as Apa Sherpa, there were many fascinating people to found on the trail.
This episode and episode 126, A Death In The Family, carry similar themes. Life, death, and risk. So I’ll refer you back to my post from 126 for my thoughts there. Instead, I’d like to write a bit about that mountaineering spirit, or “gene” as Jon calls it, and what I learned about it on … [Read more…]
This was a big day for us in a number of ways, not least of which was the fact that we were finally back on the trail. The weight of wondering if the trek was over or not was lifted and forward momentum returned. Also, it was Megan’s birthday! The coinciding of the two events … [Read more…]
I appear only briefly in this week’s episode, and didn’t participate in the commentary for it, so it’s a little trickier than normal to come with something to write about this week. I’ve already written a bit about communicating back with the world and being off the grid, but there’s probably room to expand upon that. So, here we go…
This was a day where we were brought face to face with the risk involved in not just climbing Everest, but in the region and in the lifestyle in general. We had already heard about one death on the mountain, a Sherpa that died in an avalanche above base camp, but this was the one … [Read more…]
We mentioned it a bit in this episode towards the end, but even with as much detail as Jon gives in the podcast you still get only a tiny sliver of the experience. Even with the extra information I’m dishing out here, there is still only the smallest window into the overall trek available. For … [Read more…]
This was a day of changes. From the temperatures, to the terrain, to the altitude, to the moods, this day ended very differently than it began. I found this to be the point at which it really began to feel like an Everest trek. This was more like what might pop into your head when you think of hiking in the Himalayas.
I think everyone on the trip had their own personal “OMG!” moment at some point. Some of us even had several of them. The arrival at Tengboche and subsequent time spent there was most certainly one of my two big emotional goosebump days. Sadly, I did a pretty poor job of enunciating how I was feeling in the commentary for this episode, but hopefully I’ll do a better job here. This was the day that what I was doing really sunk in, the day I really let it sink in.
For as much time as we spend talking about all the struggles and challenges of the trek, some might begin to wonder why in the world anyone would do something like this. Why would you want to go and do something that seems so decidedly un-fun? This episode gives a good window into how much fun there was to be had on the trails every day.
Ahh… technology. You don’t realize how much a part of your daily life it is until it’s taken away. And the harshness of the conditions you’re in really hit home as you watch how it impacts your gear. Frosted lenses, frozen batteries, failing memory cards, powerless laptops… the Himalayas can be really rough on technology.