Wednesday, November 24, 2010
Mission Accomplished !
By Marco Gorin - 18 days have gone by since Steve and I set out for Kathmandu and the beginning of our 2010 Himalayan adventure. While on the trek time we could not make head or tail of time as it loses all significance as we know it and experience it in our daily lives back home. More than once both of us commented on that fact that, once committed to the trek, everything else seemed to be so distant, especially the days and flurry of activities leading up to our departure. Now, only a day back home, the whole experience seems to still so vivid in our minds and yet so far!!
While we experienced some technical difficulties on the way we can safely say that our mission of trekking to the top of Kala Patthar and on to Everest Base Camp was accomplished !
In the early morning of Monday 15th November 2010 we set off to Kala Patthar from our high camp in Lobuche at 4,900 m above sea level. Once crossed the 5,000 m line and only a few hundred vertical meters from the summit I had to made the painful, yet wise, decision of turning back due to the onset of Cerebral Edema one of the symptoms of Acute Mountain Sickness (aka AMS).
Steve, however, soldiered on and at 12:46 of a gloriously clear day he made it to the top!
While I descended as quickly as possible to Pheriche to lessen the effects of AMS, Steve went on to spend a night at 5,200 m at Gorak Shep to carry on the following morning to reach Everest Base Camp (EBC) at 09:12 am on Tuesday 16th November 2010 ! He then continued down hill to conclude a 11 hour marathon which saw us reunited at Pheriche in the late evening of the same day.
Steve is obviously ecstatic with the accomplishment. I am happy to have walked out on my own two feet and, with him, extremely pleased that, while not together, we did manage to complete the mission.
Apart from accomplishing the original goal in support of the Suthasinee Noi-in Foundation we were also able to provide our late friend Nick James with a superb resting spot on the shoulders of giants and under the bluest sky !! Nick's ashes were scattered in the winds by Steve from the top of Kala Patthar soon after reaching its summit. Farewell dear friend !!
Over the next few days and weeks Steve and I will attempt to provide a more detailed account of the experience by words and pictures.
We wish to thank all the people whom supported and helped us along the way be it in the form of donations in support of the foundation and the HIV+ kids or on the trek itself.
Donations will be welcome for a while longer before we make our way to Yasothon in mid January 2011 to deliver the full sum to the Suthasinee Noi-in Foundation.
If you have pledged but not donated yet or if you would like to donate this is the right time to do so.