With only 10 days to go, I am finishing off the last of the preparations. Testing out the last of the things that need to work, like a feeble version of a shower, via baby wipes. Thankfully, also unscented...LOL Up that high, you cannot just grab a drink or a bath from the river or spring. It would be environmentally disasterous to the region since all the villages in the Kumbu valley all have one source of water, what comes out of the bottom of the glacier at Everest. Strict rules include only taking water from permitted locations and consuming or using it hundreds of yards away from the river as any impurities could wreck havoc on those downstream. The ground is porous and contamination of the water is a significant issue to take control of.
Yesterday went to Catoctin State Park and hiked with my dear wife for a little less than 4 hours. We made a good bit of distance and the trails we chose had a good bit of up and down in them including a 3/4 drop of about 1,000 feet to leave the thighs good and burning. I hear that coming down from BaseCamp is actually more physically demanding than the trail up because you can train for up. Climb stairs, treadmill inclines...but going down steep trails is a skill hard to re-create, so this was an enjoyable exercise. My best guess was we did about 5,000 feet of up and about the same down over several trails. I keep getting some silly looks from folk out on the trail mistakingly thinking I am hiking with a bullet proof vest instead of a weight vest. One woman looked positively worried.
Sleeping (sort of) at 15,000 feet now...hopefully can make it to 17,000 before leaving. Have my instructions about weight limitations on gear (44lbs) and instructions for family should there be any disturbances (earthquake, civil unrest) and all the paperwork seems in order.
I am unsure about how much access to Internet I will have once on the trek, so what I might want to post may be delayed until I get to a village with some access. There is not much electricity up in the valley, so do not concern yourself if the blog goes silent. It just means I am saving it all up. On the other hand, if I can get some lo-resolution photos out online, I will.
T minus 10 days and counting!!