As I sit in the garden of the Thamel Eco Resort, it is like a little oasis away from the hustle and bustle of Thamel. The Prevent Breast Cancer Team have left and it seems very quiet here without them. Time to reflect on what made this trip so special. Firstly the team have raised over £110,000 to help Prevent Breast Cancer for future generations. This without a doubt is testament to the hard work the team have put in. That’s been reflected in this trip. In the past I know the team have battled hard to even be here to do the trip but let me highlight some of their time on trek.
The hustle and bustle of Ramechhap airport where in the blink of an eye they called for four trekkers for the next flight, which then became 10, then 15 and within a very short time the team were on board, some with their own bags, some even had their own passports, but the rest stayed calm and by Lukla everyone was reunited with each other, the passports and the bags! Welcome to Nepal!
Then it was downhill (give or take a few ups) to Phakding. We felt like we had the trail to ourselves apart from the bag carrying zopkios.
Next day the weather was perfect for the walk up to Namche, bridges bridges bridges were the order of the day, with many of the team having to overcome their fear of heights. Then the final big push uphill to Namche with some having the added bonus of arriving in the dark to see the flickering tea house lights!
The team learned that rest days rarely mean lying in bed, and so our acclimatisation day began with a visit to the Sagarmatha National Park museum and the statue of Tenzing Norgay and on to the Everest View Hotel for a much needed cup of tea. The lure of the bakery won some people over whilst others returned down the hill to Namche.
The following day we set off on the trail winding round the hillside before descending into Funky Tenga (I have no idea how to spell it but it sounds great) then the climb up to Tengboche for a visit to the monastery and some lunch. After lunch came the steady climb up to Pangboche. This was the day everyone had to work hard and dig really deep.
The day from Pangboche to Dingboche is a short one and everyone had a really nice chilled out day, the walk was beautiful but I think many will remember this day as the blueberry cheesecake day.
Another rest day in Dingboche followed – well it was only a short walk – either up the ridge or on to Chukkung. And well you guessed it, more blueberry cheesecake.
With each day now it feels like we are getting closer to our target and although the walk from Dingboche to Lobuche is not that long, the altitude really kicks in and some who hadn’t felt the effects up until now began to find out what altitude is really about.
A shorter day again to Gorak Shep and by mid-afternoon I was tapping my watch again signalling time to go and ready for the walk up Kala Patthar.
Kala Patthar looks a pretty insignificant little hill. But it takes a bit of effort to go back out once you are cosy by the fire in the lodge. Those that did go out chose their own summit to push for but many got to the top. As we stopped and the sun went down it got pretty cold and was time for the big jackets, but we were rewarded with a magnificent sunset over Lhotse, Nuptse and Mount Everest itself.
For those at the back, a special time walking off in the darkness and we even stopped just for a minute torches off just to see the stars. It really felt like you could reach out and touch them.
Like kids waiting for Christmas we knew the next day would be Everest Base Camp, and many couldn’t believe it.
We decided that we wanted to all arrive at the same time so some of the team had a very early breakfast and made good time. We were so lucky to have Base Camp to ourselves. So many different emotions and feelings for each of the team but again the overall consensus was that they just couldn’t believe they were here at Everest Base Camp.
The trip back from Gorak Shep to Lukla took just three days and certainly by the time the team reached Dingboche with its veggie burgers and chips and another slice of blueberry cheesecake the team were most certainly feeling the benefits of the thicker air.
What an amazing team to work with and everyone should be very proud, enjoy sharing the experience with your family and friends.
The full day to day round up of the trip and photos can be found here
Interested in getting involved next year? Find out more here.
Carrie Gibson has traveled on many of our expeditions including Everest North Ridge, Denali, Aconcagua, Kilimanjaro, Elbrus, Island Peak & Ama Dablam. Carrie is also the first British woman to summit Himlung Himal.