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Mount Everest Base Camp: Day by Day…..

Lukla to Phakding (9km. Starting at 2800m, finishing at 2600m. -200m drop)

The most exciting part of today was taking the small plane from Kathmandu to Lukla! The flight is only 25 minutes but wow, it was exciting! We had a rough patch just as I stood up to take a photo from the other side of the plane…. I handled it pretty well but was fast back into my seat – the very back seat of the tiny plane. Flying through the middle of the mountains and approaching a very short runway with spectators and buildings at the end of it was thrilling! All of our duffle bags didn’t fit on our plane with us (due to weight restrictions) so our plane took a quick trip back to Kathmandu to collect the remaining bags while we took a look around Lukla, and then I enjoyed a hot chocolate and biscuits in the sun!

1.5hrs after landing we started our first day of trekking the trails up to Base Camp. It was a relatively easy start with a 9km day and an altitude drop of 200m however…. believe me, there were still some demanding uphill sections as I was determined to not let the Belgian Tornadoes drop me on day one. On the uphill sections and stairs I could already feel the effects of altitude! On the flat sections and downhills I was thinking; the fitness is there but my muscles were aching a bit on the longer downhills – stepping down from rock to rock.

I was quite amazed at how technical the trails are, they’re not just dirt tracks, it takes a huge amount of concentration to place your feet in the right place – if you try to look up at the scenery on the technical sections it could end your trip… I’ve already seen a few people lift their heads and twist their ankles! I tried to check my messages while walking but it was too dangerous!

I’ve got myself a Nepal sim card however it only works in a few places along the way!

The highlights of today’s trek was the long suspension bridges – of course people jump up and down on them so it’s super hard to take nice images and I’m scared of dropping my phone off one of them!

The other really amazing thing was seeing he Sherpa’s walk with all that weight of the duffle bags on their backs…. I can’t imagine the damage their doing to their bodies! Some of them were wearing flip-flops and taking all the weight through their heads/necks, hunched right over. I couldn’t stop watching them in amazement while we were stopped for lunch. We were fortunate to see our own sherpa’s run past – we must have professional trekkers carrying our duffle bags because they were actually running with 50kg each strapped to their backs! All our duffle bags are numbered so we were trying to spot each of our bags as they flashed past! Apparently they’ll always leave after us and arrive at our tea-houses ahead of us – impressive!

Unfortunately I fell ill just before lunch with diarreah – sorry if that’s too much info! It made the final 4km post lunch trek very uncomfortable. My amazing doctor (Dag) and I have concluded it’s probably due to pretty serious dehydration. I started taking the altitude sickness tablets yesterday (which I only learnt today is a type of diuretic) and because my allergies were so bad in the city of Kathmandu – I also took pseudoephedrine to clear my sinuses and help my breathing then, on top of those mistakes I got a lot of sun today (sunburnt) and…. I didn’t drink near enough! So after lunch I drank two litres of water in the final 4km – with High5 Zero electrolyte tabs. I still felt very poorly upon arriving at the accommodation; the sun was going down and I was shivering and shaking waiting for my room key. 4hrs later and I’m feeling MUCH better. It really helped that our accommodation is more like a hotel than a lodge or tea-house…. whilst the lights/electricity/power keep dropping out

I did manage to have a hot shower! Everyone keeps telling me this will be the last time we’ll have showers and beds with bedding!

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I’m off to dinner with our group now (7pm) and will have an early night as we’ve been up since 4am.

More tomorrow…..

Saturday 27th October 2019 (first day trekking)

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