Hello and welcome to our new blog!
We are heading off for Nepal on 21 March 2006 to attempt to climb Mount Everest. It’s been a long time in the making but now it seems a little scarily close – only about 6 weeks until we leave.
We’ve been very busy training and have just returned from spending another week in Victoria’s high country – bike riding and hiking. Last Sunday we completed the 200km Audax Alpine Classic bike ride – which was very difficult in 43 degree heat. We felt fine in the morning and by midday had ridden 130kms and completed 3 of the 4 big climbs, but the last climb – Mount Buffalo – was an absolute killer with little shade and the afternoon sun bearing down upon us.
Like everyone else, we had to stop several times on the way up and didn’t complete the 200kms until late in the afternoon. Thank God for the halfway drink stop and the water spray which cooled us down. After that we spent 3 days camped at the bottom of Mount Bogong, hiking up and down each day.
It seems like these last few weeks are whizzing by so quickly and we still have lots of bits and pieces to finalise! We now have most of our gear but there are still a fair few fiddly bits and pieces to arrange (good socks, sunglasses, overmitts, thermoses, pee bottles, another thermal layer, sports gels, compression bags, spare pack buckles, etc, etc). We’re also still tossing up decisions like whether to get a video camera or not, how to store our photos while over there, exactly what foods to take, etc. So surprisingly we don’t really have a lot of free time at the moment.
We have had some great news recently though. Firstly, our good friends Chris and Bridget have decided to come to Nepal and hike into Base Camp with us. This should make the 2 week trek in lots of fun. They’ll stay at Base Camp for a while and then hike out and continue on with some more exotic traveling.
And secondly, Mary Adler (Paul’s step-mother) has decided to trek into Base Camp later to be there when we make our summit bid. She’s a volunteer at the Commonwealth Games so will stay in Melbourne until they are finished and then will head over around the 20th April. This will be a great support for both of us – and by then we might be needing it!!!
We’re still doing lots of cycling as well as stepping up our strength training now that our departure date is looming. We’re also planning for two more hiking trips before we leave – hopefully to do another section of the Alpine Walking Track and something else with Chris and Bridget. We plan to keep training solidly right up until we leave as with the flights and a few days in Kathmandu, we’ll probably be doing very little for quite a while after we leave. Once we start the trek in, there will also be plenty of rest days scheduled to help us acclimatise to the diminishing levels of oxygen.
Thanks for visiting our website – we’ll be updating again soon (although not every day as that would be a bit boring at the moment!)