Valley beneath Tangboche
6:20 P.M. local time (8:35 A.M EDT)
I’m sitting here outside the dining tent, staring at Kantega. Clouds are settling into the valley, and we’re being treated to some pretty spectacular scenery. The snow covered peaks look like oil paintings—almost not real.
Today’s hike up to Tangboche was another rough trip. As Mike stated, we took it at an easy pace. No sense pushing it too hard if we didn’t have to. The problem is, if we go too fast, we’ll run out of fuel halfway up. My legs were feeling it today. But when I rounded a curve in the trail, there it was. Everest. White plumes were blowing across the summits of all the great peaks—Lhotse, Nuptse, and of course, Everest. It took my breath away. When you’ve dreamed of standing beneath its massive body since you were a young child, and then to experience it in person for the first time in your life, well, it honestly sends chills down your spine. I have to say, to be beneath the summits of the world’s grandest chain of giants nearly brings tears to my eyes. Call me soft, I don’t care.
Group dynamics are another matter. I believe Mike and I learned of each other’s limits early in the trip. He snores. I don’t. Which means I have a new tent mate. But other than that, we know when to give each other space. Which is really important when you’re taking a month-long trip with someone. Respect and being conscious of the other’s needs are what it’s all about at this point. There can be issues…more on that in the next dispatch.
Batteries. Batteries. Batteries.
Yes, we are still using laptop batteries. But we’re burning them up pretty quickly. Soon we’ll have to go to the gel-cell and recharge. We’ve also cut the use of the computers down to a bare minimum. That said, I think we’ll be fine.
There was an accident with the porters today. One fell and slipped down the mountain a little. He was hurt, but thankfully it was nothing serious. But our equipment was in that bag and, believe it or not, doesn’t appear to be damaged. Good news for us.
Now, just because I know you want to know, here’s our dinner menu from last night (I’ll try to keep you updated):
- Garlic soup
- Yak moe-moes (yak meat inside dumplings)
- Tomato relish
- Banana pie
- Assorted teas and hot yak milk
That’s all for tonight folks. More to follow tomorrow, after the trip to 14,000 feet (4,267 meters).
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David Bard has been a fixture at TechRepublic for some time now. At one time he was editor in chief of LinuxRepublic and then AdminRepublic. Currently, he occupies space as an editor in chief with TechProGuild. In addition, he’s a freelance writer who has covered extreme sports for years. He also is a writer of horror and—contrary to what his climbing partner may think—is hoping the expedition to Nepal doesn’t provide fodder for his next story. When he’s not at home teaching his year-and-a-half-old daughter why it’s not a good idea to eat rocks, or trying to convince his wife why yet another expedition really is necessary, he’s usually off in some remote section of woods trying to discover himself. He’s still looking.