Day 7: Lobuche to Base Camp Part 1

IMG_5853

Our day started early at Lobuche. It was quite cold but everyone was in high spirits about our push. Maya, Shailee and myself (the guides) were a little unsure how everyone would do as altitude grew and the air thinned.

IMG_5850

Our climb from Lobuche into GorakShep was longer and tougher than I had recalled. The altitude change was challenging for everyone especially on the uphills. I still was carrying a lot of weight, including numerous bottles of hot water to make sure we could keep everyone hydrated. Most of the girls didn’t like cold water, so making it warm was key to keep everyone hydrated.

At the top IMG_5932of our biggest hill we found the stone memorials for the departed soul of climbers. Maya, Shailee and I checked on everyone and saw the energy level was quite low, especially for a couple of our Courageous Girls. Dr. Dan in Pheriche had instructed us on reading signs of altitude sickness to see if anyone needed to be brought down. At this altitude it’s normal to feel the effects of high elevation which include headaches and body aches. I was feeling a pounding headache myself. though hydrating was the only way of reducing it for me. We stopped and hydrated and then continued on with our journey.

We all pushed hard and got to Gorakshep by around 10:30. The plan was for everyone to have lunch at 11am and then leave by 12noon and make a push to Base Camp.

IMG_5863

IMG_5867

Spirits were high though physically many of us were quite challenged. The day was absolutely stunning — cold but very little wind. I reduced my load and only carried additional hot water, warm gear and heating pads. Just before leaving for the long trek to Base Camp, I gave everyone a prayer flag and asked them to think of the things we each wanted to let go of in our life and the those things we wanted to ask the mountain for support. At exactly noon we all started the final long trek into Base Camp Everest.