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We Made It!!!

Yes, we did, and it was amazing! Two days ago we finally made it to Everest Base Camp. As it's been a couple of days since I have been able to access internet, let me update you a bit.

Two days before arriving to Base Camp the scenery and terrain changed dramatically. We went from trees and shrubs to absolutely nothing but rocks and dirt ... but amazing mountains right in front of us. Everything looked as if we were on a different planet ... something like what I imagine Mars would look like. It was a very difficult climb for two days for absolutely everyone. It is amazing that I was still ok with the altitude given that about 80-90% of our group had some problems and many were on medications for altitude sickness. It is nothing to play around with at this elevation!

Changing scenery - Pheriche to Lobuche

Changing scenery - Pheriche to Lobuche


P1000459.jpgCarrying wood up the mountain

Carrying wood up the mountain

Pheriche to Lobuche

Pheriche to Lobuche

Pheriche to Lobuche 2

Pheriche to Lobuche 2

Here comes Edna!

Here comes Edna!

Me

Me

The day before arriving at Base Camp, we passed through the the section where monuments were set up for many climbers who had passed away on their attempt to summit Everest. It was an eerie feeling walking through this and my admiration for Werner having summitted at nearly 70 is unbelievable.

Scott Fisher's Memorial

Scott Fisher's Memorial

Memorials to those who didn't make it back - on the smaller ridge

Memorials to those who didn't make it back - on the smaller ridge

Memorials for those who didn't make it back

Memorials for those who didn't make it back

Memorial to a Vancouverite

Memorial to a Vancouverite


On the way to Lobuche

On the way to Lobuche


Acclimitization hike (Lobuche)

Acclimitization hike (Lobuche)

Acclimitization hike (Lobuche) and me

Acclimitization hike (Lobuche) and me


Acclimitization hike (Lobuche) - The Khumbu Glacier is below me on the right

Acclimitization hike (Lobuche) - The Khumbu Glacier is below me on the right

The day of the big hike to Base Camp was long and tiring. We started early (5:30) and went for many hours before reaching it.

On our way to Base Camp - this is the day!

On our way to Base Camp - this is the day!

On our way to Base Camp

On our way to Base Camp

Almost at Base Camp - You can see the yellow tents

Almost at Base Camp - You can see the yellow tents

The terrain was difficult (lots of jumping from boulder to boulder). But once I got there, there was such cheering and hugging!

Made it!!!

Made it!!!

Many took much longer to arrive which gave me time to go further into Base Camp. It is not at all what I expected. There are about 500 tents scattered aver rocky, hilly, and icy terrain that spans along and to the bottom of the Kumbu Icefalls (a good hour hike each way to get across all of it). There are amazing ice formations everywhere you look, including large boulders perched atop ice crystals. But travelling for too long in this area left me exhausted. And then the snow and wind started. I made my way back to where most of the group stopped - at the entry sign saying "Everest Base Camp; Elevation 5,364 meters." I had bought some Prayer flags earlier and had written on each flag the name of those people in my life that I wished to share this experience with, and a note to each. I strung the prayer flags at Base Camp so each of you can have a permanent spot there, too ... I (along with many others) had quite an emotional experience at this point and I can't wait to share it with you when I return.

This is Base Camp

This is Base Camp


Ice formations at Base Camp

Ice formations at Base Camp

Ice formations at Base Camp 2

Ice formations at Base Camp 2

Ice Formations at Base Camp and Me

Ice Formations at Base Camp and Me

Tents at Base Camp

Tents at Base Camp

Base Camp

Base Camp

Rock on Ice

Rock on Ice

Khumbu Icefalls (this is were the ascent up Everest begins)

Khumbu Icefalls (this is were the ascent up Everest begins)

Me

Me

Prayer Flags at Base Camp

Prayer Flags at Base Camp


Leaving Base Camp

Leaving Base Camp

After staying at Base Camp for a couple of hours, it was time to leave ... Many were so exhausted and ill at this point that it took them a long time to arrive back at our accommodation in Gorak Shep. We were all exhausted but I, at least, was exhilarated by the experience. It is amazing that we all made it to Base Camp. When we left Kathmandu, our trip organizer, Naba, predicted based on previous treks that only about 60% of the group will make it. We also passed a lady who came with 4 friends and she was the only one to make it (as I said, this is no easy trek!).

The last couple of days were also tiresome - it just never ends :-) Although we are heading down, today's hike was very high up then down and it was one of my hardest days. But we are now back in Namche Bazaar and I was rewarded with the best shower I have ever had ... Not the best feeling when no showers available for over a week!

Posted by irinar 03:07

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Comments

Congratulations! to you and all of you.
love
Andryana

by Andryana

CONGRATULATIONS Irina!!!! Olga

by Olga Szabo

Congratulations Irina! Truly AMAZING!!! Can't wait for all the details when you get back :)
Thinking of you,
Kris

by Kris

Touchdown!Congratulations Warrior and to your tribe. Thank you for keeping posted,good to hear you are safe and sound. The natures pictures shows abundance, thank you to the Creator.I need to get out from work and go trekking. Lord Ganesha - the Elephant God - son of Lord Shiva is the remover of obstacles. May you have his blessings. OM! You are a Warrior!

by Raj Chidam

Congratulations Irina! Amazing accoplishments!Cheers,Olga

by Olga Szabo

Congatulations Irina!
Wow! You've made it!
Increadible!
See you in Vancouver!We would like to hear everything!:):):):)
Cheers,
Olga

by Olgi

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