Everest Base Camp – the cold facts


As I pack I look at snowy, grim pictures of the Everest base camp trek in deep winter and read about the unforgiving -25 degree nights. I remember the cold and the lack of oxygen at that altitude on Kilimanjaro. I meditate to calm myself. We decide to rent the expedition sleeping bags and down coats because, honestly, in that place and in that weather you want the best down that money can buy and my gear doesn’t qualify.

So, after months of indecision, I finally buy bigger hiking boots to accommodate thicker wool socks.  I am nervous to leave my well-seasoned boots at home but I don’t want to sacrifice even the smallest increase in warmth. It’s late in the day to break in new boots but I will only take them off to shower and for bed and bed isn’t a given.

Have I trained enough? I think so but my recent eating orgy has resulted in my trusty hiking pants working harder than they were ever intended to house my reubenesque glory. S!#t! What was I thinking when I gorged myself on Kathy’s most awesome fudge and that box of discounted Halloween chocolate two weeks before I leave?  I meditate again.

A friend said, “You must be in kick-ass shape” hmmm…not so much. I would be in better shape if I had just a wee bit more time to train and didn’t have an abiding love for all things edible. As my dear sister says, we have bodies that want to be round. Hopefully mental grit will take over if the roundish body fails.

I am deeply excited for the adventure. Except for the cold – I’m not excited for the cold. It’s part of the experience, just not the enjoyable part. A week and a half to go and counting. I will keep you posted.

11 responses »

    • You may be thankful for that little extra weight after a few days of slugging in cold weather. After all, isn’t that what it’s for?

  1. You will conquer the cold just as you have in the past…wait a minute…isn’t that what Jim’s coming for…good luck to both of you and look forward to the pictures and stories upon your return

  2. Hi Arlene, I am technically nigh unto an idiot so I do hope this note gets back to you. I have been wondering about your Everest adventure lately and Bam! here’s your blog! I’m afraid I am not a good communicator and simply getting worse as time passes. I’m hermitizing. I am still agog that you are going to do this trip. And I know how excited you must be about it…so different from me!! However, I AM excited for your joy. You are the one who has taught me that life is an adventure and that you aren’t going to miss anything!!! I think you’ve had a “bucket list” since you were ten. What is left on it? I’m dying to know. Really!

    I am quilting every chance I get and that is quite a bit but still not enough. My eyes give out on me and other parts of my body are cranky. My youngest sister Pattie told me a couple of days ago that I am “old”. Nice. Like shut up. She also weighs more than me now and she used to be appalled that I was fat. @%&”!!!

    We have no plans on going east for a visit. We are planning on going to St. George from late March until early May again and I love it. Roy’s legs are not very strong anymore so walking is a limited exercise. He uses the Circulation Booster machine and it has made such a difference in his ability but I don’t think we are in golfing shape. So, I think I’ll just go ahead and eat another piece of chocolate. haha.

    I look forward to hearing about this major event that you are undertaking but more, I want you to be safe. I will keep you in my prayers (yes, they do work) and know that I love you. x0x0x0x Sue

    • Great to hear from you Sue. A dear friend has a coaster that says with grace and mirth let old wrinkles come. Or somethg to that effect. That will be us. Would love to have a chat with you and catch up when i get back. xoxo lots of love.

  3. Hi Arlene,
    Ben’s mom here (jennifer). have a safe and enjoyable trip. I will be reading your posts with interest.

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