Saturday, September 03, 2011

Everest Base Camp & Kala Patthar 07-23.05.2011 (5)

11May2011 - Namche Bazar(3450M) > Thengboche(3800M)
As usual, departed at 0730. But without KMeng. Sigh... Even CLeong who experienced mild AMS looked better. Towards 3800M, we started to realise that we were surrounded by Himalayan mount range. On n off, some unknown mountain peaks showed up whenever clouds made way for our sight. RQing walked slowly at the back. MChin n Raj accompanied her. I too tagged along them to start slow myself. I do scare of AMS! Call me chicken, but, I am a wise chicken ;-) Couple team, HWL n Choy were doing steadily too. As usual, RWen n GWah were at front. All seems well.

We stopped by at Phunki for lunch. Thereafter, it's all the way up to Thengboche. It got windy at a time so I walked a bit faster to keep myself warm. At one point, while i was walking with TBK, he decided to wait for those who were a distance from the front. We often do this back in Msia to close the gap between the team members at the front & back. This is exactly why I only choose to trek with OX, coz, we care about the team. Nonetheless, it was a wrong decision at such altitude though. We stood there for 15min, unaware of the chill wind effect, creeping in & took away our body heat without ourselves aware of it. We moved again once we saw them from far. At Thengboche, we waited for another 30min for regroup. Minus the Buddhist monastery, Thengboche does has the New Zealand feel. Vast green field with cows & yaks. Huts and lodges are at discreet distance in the misty environment. The blizzard wind was such a nightmare, although it was still day time. I was shivering hard & had to put on layer of jackets.

We were later told our stay over is at Debuche, another 30min but a descending trek, i speed down to have more body heat. But unfortunately for TBK, he later self diagnosed himself as hypothermia patient. What? TBK? Thought he has the muscle to generate enough heat for him? ;-) Lesson of the day is, never stop for too long. We were overzealous. When we wrapped him up with blanket, deva ju! He looked just lke RQing on the other day! That nite was bloody cold. Room temp was 12C before I slept. It's the 1st nite that i succumbed to use my rented sleeping bag. At USD1 per day, bloody cosy n warm!
Log of the day: 5hr walking day. 2hr lunch break. The peak refers to Thengboche. 

We were at the waistline of mountain range. Looking across to the other mountain is a joy.
Mountain goats. 

My feet need to breath too. My Salomon Elios GORE-Tex is a reliable partner. 

A typical lunch place. 

Potters took a break. It's a tough job. Chinese would say, blood-sweat-money. 

A rare team photo session indeed. 

Thengboche. Buddhist monastery & a lodge is there. 

Thengboche. A great valley view at the backdrop. 

A cattle with a heavy oversize head? 

Our lodge at Debuche. 

Similar bedroom setup as other lodges. But, practical. 

I like this chart in the lodge. It tells that I have experienced the 50% Oxygen rate environment when I was at Kala Patthar peak at 5500m later on. And, it was really tough.  

Everest Base Camp & Kala Patthar 07-23.05.2011 (4)

10May2011 - Acclimatization @Namche Bazar(3450M)
It suppose to be a relax day but KMeng shocked us with the possibility that he got chicken pox! A 2hr trek by himself to Khunde n paid a hefty USD50 consultant to doctor confirms this awful news. Everyone's mood got affected I am sure. He was determined to carry on initially. Although we know he is a bloody tough guy , but there is a risk for him to get pneumonia n pass on the virus n further disrupt the team formation. We managed to persuade him to stay back at Namche. He had reluctantly accepted the fate. I was bloody distracted by his dismissal. His present in the team means something special. At least, i would feel safer with his mountaineering knowledge he possesses in the team. More fun too. On the other hands, only MChin n me have yet getting chicken pox b4. We were wary the risk. RQing seems better. She joined the group for a leisure hike up to 3700M to an airport. That relieved her AMS fear i guess. We had fostered a good relationship with guide leadesr, Raj n his assistant Dalwat. Especially Raj who speaks better english. I had to switch the room with johny as i was sharing the room with KMeng previously. Until now, me n MChin are yet to get the virus. Naturally born with antibody? Hope so.
Leisure walk around Namche. 

It's an old town sort of feeling. Vintage. 

Even sleep, you need some essential gears. It was a cold cold night.

Everest Base Camp & Kala Patthar 07-23.05.2011 (3)

9May2011 - Phakding(2600M) > Namche Bazar(3450M)
Air got thinner n thinner towards 3400m. But it was a relax walk with too much stops for photo sessions with those DSLR holders. Anyway, that's what we were paying for the scenery. No hurry. Kept bumping into the cow herds from opposite direction. The whole trail is constantly fertilized by dang. At times, we trapped in between the animal traffic along the narrow trail. We did experience the thrill of overtaking some herds like those mad drivers in Msia. We tailgate the herd, once there's a space, we sprinted thru with mindful of their horns. Abt 4pm, we reach Namche! It was a WoW when the village 1st came into my sight. Sprawling terrace of grid-like hses built along the slope of the mountain. The mist n cooling weather amplifies the beauty of the town. We checked in Buddha lodge, our favorite lodge of all with the deliciously foods. 220rp for a hot bath up made us felt heavenly. For the sake of joke, its the quietest day in the group as our AK46 RQinging struck by AMS. That's the only beauty of AMS though ;-) This reminded me of the lurking danger. Everyone could get it regardless of ur fitness. Luckily, next day is our acclimatization day where RQinging had an ample time to recover. At dinner, she looked terribly sorry n still had to endured our mockery on her. Retribution? LOL. The dinner was great with the blow water chat while we catch-up KMeng story on what he had done in Nepal for 3mth! KMeng even WoW Raj & Dalwat with his successful solo attempt to Dhaulagiri glacier region. We all agree that he should look for a publisher to share his adventure in his around the world trip.

Log of the day: ~6hr of walking time. The graph shows the terrain. Highest altitude reached at 3338m.

Typical sherpa's kitchen. Neat n 'clean' suppose. Well, the air is dry & thin. Fly can't survive there. 

Captivating scene at backdrop.

Before leaving Mountain Resort, it's water pumping time. Highly recommended to buy such filter. Save $$$ & save to drink the water. 

Dal bhat. A common meal for Nepalese. In Msia, we will call it mixed rice. The vege always served fresh as the chef will normally plant some vege around their area.

Well, it's obvious that we were still at low altitude. But the scenery is already great.

Bridge crossing day... 

Non stop bridge crossing day. 

It's so common to come across such setup. A Buddhism mantra divider, where you should always pass it in CLOCK WISE.  

Namche Bazar! 1st sight was amazing.

At 3400m, a misty day at Namche Bazar is a norm. 

When the cloud is cleared, suddenly, a snow mountain showed up from my window! WOW WOW WOW~~~
Our bedroom. Simple & neat. Just good enough to have a good rest. At night, I felt like I'm in a fridge!
The 1st AMS patient. See, the illness can shut down a AK47 ;-) Nonetheless, AMS is no joke.