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Australian Professional Cyclist


Mount Everest Base Camp – Conquered!

Gorakshep – BASE CAMP – Gorakshep: 6.28km.

Starting Altitude: 5,190m.

Finishing Altitude: 5,394m.

Elevation Gain (Not Difference): 222m.

Moving/Trekking Time: 2hr31min

Average Heart Rate: 137 bpm.

Max Heart Rate: 164 bpm.

Blood Saturation 1hr Pre Trek: 55%

Blood Saturation 1hr Post Trek: 37%

WOW! I just conquered Everest Base Camp!

What can I say? I’m proud to have made it to Mount Everest Base Camp! Was it easy, well no…. but also, it wasn’t as demanding as I thought it would be! There were many days I felt we should keep trekking – as we were often done by 1pm and apart from the chest infection, I felt strong!

Reaching EVEREST BASE CAMP with the famous Belgian Tornadoes & our summiteer guides!

In saying that, the last 3.14km push up to EBC this afternoon, and then the 3.14km trek back down was NOT easy – for me!

I felt strong in the legs on this morning’s trek (but often out of breath) and was super excited at lunch to be so close to reaching EBC!

On the hike up out of our hotel I quickly found myself out of breath and needing constant ‘sit down’ rests, where I really just relaxed and took in the stunning views of the Mount Everest Summit! I also noticed that all members of our group were slowing down and taking good long standing rests after every 5-10 steps!

The air is thin, that’s for sure but my chest infection was certainly making it even harder to use the little oxygen we had access to in the air – at over 5000m altitude.

View of Mount Everest on the way up to Base Camp.

Can you believe the conversation we had at lunch? Our guides came around to each of our tables to explain to anyone who was feeling tired that they should consider skipping the afternoon Trek up to EBC because there’s nothing there to see – other than a rock with spray paint on it, saying Everest Base Camp 5,364m. BUT, what about the stunning views of the summit along the way! The guides were explaining it could be a consideration to recover and attempt Kala Patar the next morning, experiencing better views from a slightly higher view.

My initial thought was – surely no one would come this close and not actually climb the last 3.14km up to EBC! I was right; everyone still here left in our group endured the final 6.28km round trip up to EBC and back to our hotel!

There was probably a 45min difference in pace (on the way up) from our strongest trekkers to our most fatigued. The weather was absolutely amazing – sunny and warm! We all waited at the top for everyone to arrive and we shared that special moment together.

Banging down at Bounty at Base Camp!

Achievement is a special emotion and just to be there with a team who had supported each other through good and bad days (over the past 10 days) was something I can’t really describe! I saw world-class athletes sharing the same immense emotions as their friends, coaches, managers, reporters, photographers and sponsors. Everyone was smiling and bouncing around the rock with so much energy and elation. The suffering and full focus on each last step was rewarded with a massive rush of satisfying emotions!

Slow walking up to Mount Everest Base Camp!

Now, I’ll share a secret with you that some of my friends on the top of Mount Everest Base Camp may have noticed during their euphoric celebrations.

Mount Everest Summit in the background.

Reaching Mount Everest Base Camp with one of the most inspiring coaches of all time – Jacques Borlée.

I was not feeling exactly as I should have felt. In the moment, I wondered why I was not feeling the HIGH and RUSH as much as I should perhaps have. I was one of the first of our group to the top of EBC so if I was just tired, could I not just accept that it’s normal – and really appreciate the moment?

Was I subconsciously thinking – what are we celebrating? I was a little confused about my emotions and energy levels. Yes, I was satisfied and proud that I’d made it to Mount Everest Base Camp! I knew I had prepared well under the guidance of my doctor (Dag) who takes my physical and emotional condition and preparation/goals very seriously, to ensure I don’t fail on my ambitions. Not once did I have any ankle/knee/joint/ligament pain on the entire 10-day trek up to EBC – that says something about being prepared. I also not once thought ‘I can’t do this’. The most negative thoughts I had on the trek up to Base Camp were – I’m going to lose my fingers and toes to frostbite if I don’t warm up soon! And, of course…. my chest is on fire, but… I then thought and knew others had burning chests.

Well, I mentioned in the morning’s blog that I knew I was going to make it to Mount Everest Base Camp – and I did! I also said, I’m not sure what will happen next as my chest was not clearing up…..

NOT feeling so fit on the way up to Everest Base Camp!

On average, 2-5 people per year die attempting Mount Everest Base Camp. I’ve always wondered how people actually die out there, tomorrow morning I’m going to tell you my story, the closest near death experience I’ve ever had.

For now, please feel comfortable knowing I’m safe and stable and please share the special achievement with me – I just conquered Mount Everest Base Camp!

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