Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Everest Calling - Gorak Shep to Everest Base Camp

27th April 2011, Wednesday.
The walk to EBC felt like a piece of cake. Although it was never ending.

The last lap reminded me of the trek from Bhojbasa to Gomukh: rocky, dry, arid, difficult.

The last 100 meters or so, to the base camp was a scramble on huge rocks some of which were loose. You could slip, fall, stumble, sprain your ankle or bruise yourself. All it took was a loose stone.

The Kumbhu glacier was the most attractive part of the base camp. Wonder how it is formed. Blue green, miniature mountain range by itself, made of needles and spikes.

The base Camp was a spot, which was a few boulders standing together with Buddhist prayer flags all over and above them, on a flattish landing bordering the Kumbhu glacier.

I was the first woman from our team to reach EBC. Yeaaaaaay!

We took pictures.
One fellow stood with arms outstretched as in Titanic but with his head tilted to one side. I told him he looked like Jesus Christ on the cross.

Some tried to jump in the air for photographs.

People took turns to hold a stone on which were etched the words “Everest Base Camp 5364”. I was to be the last one to hold it, although many people reached base camp after me. For, after the picture was taken, I put it down not too carefully, I actually dumped it down, and it cracked into two. Sorry to all who reached EBC after me.

It is somewhat ironical that you cannot see Mt Everest from Everest Base Camp. You can see Nuptse and Lhotse and know that Everest is behind them.
To see Everest you have climb a blackish hill called Kala Pathhar, some distance from Gorakshep.

Missed having Nandu at EBC. He had been driving us all. He had a bad back that day.

We all removed our jackets to reveal our CTS T shirts, as had been earlier decided in Kathmandu. We sang the national anthem. When the tripods were set up, it turned out they had been damaged by porters.
I wonder why people carry such cumbersome equipment.

Some distance away, there were yellow, blue and red tents. The German bakery at the base camp had been closed two years ago. So we didn’t go to the camps.

On our way back from EBC, we saw a pair of really attractive birds.

We also saw the contours of Everest through thick and thin nebulae of clouds. Or did we? Was it really Everest?

As we walked back, several times, we heard the thundering sound of avalanche somewhere on the icy mountains on our left, far away, once I stopped and looked, I saw chunks of ice crashing and sliding down.

We reached our camp at Gorakshep to cheers and welcome from the hosts and our tour guides. Mission Accomplished! In place of the usual tea and biscuits that was given us at every milestone, this time, we were given packets of salted cashews!
An atmosphere of triumph prevailed.

For most of the people, the goal had been achieved. As for mine, it would be accomplished only after I saw Everest, not through a nebula of a foggy, misty and cloudy sky, but clear and near, the next day from Kala Patthar.


Anonymous said...

Nice pics of the "Tibetan Snowcock" birds.

Ravi 拉维 said...

The Saga continues and finally we arrived at EBC.
Thanks for making me remember the trip...
Awesome... !

Nagaraju said...

Its interesting to read your blog on. Thanks for this beautiful writing from you. I sure would like to learn a lot from you.

Autobiography Of A Yogi - Paramahamsa Yogananda