April 7, Dingboche

April 7, Dingboche

Internet in Deboche was non-existent. They advertise Wi-Fi but it did not work at all, so we’ll see when I get to send these dispatches.

Once again I slept a lot of hours which has probably helped my body fight this cold I have. This morning I definitely felt better than in the last two days.

I was glad to climb today carrying my pack all the way and felt like I am on my way to recovery. We are now at 14,460′ so I hope in the next two days I get over this cold before we get any higher.

Yesterday’s lodge, the Rivendell, was very nice! Clean carpeted rooms with comfortable beds, clean bathrooms (no hot water or showers) and a great restaurant.

I actually liked it better than our lodge in Namche (The Nest) which had hot water and a good restaurant. I took a shower yesterday and that will probably be my last chance to shower until the shower gets set up at Everest base camp.

Today’s trek was truly spectacular! The views are getting better and better! We hiked with Ama Dablam on our right side all day. Lhotse and Everest were in front of us. As we got closer to them, the Nuptse-Lhotse ridge hid Everest. Both Everest and Lhotse had a huge plume extending to the right as its common this time a year. That plume indicates these summits are hitting the jet stream. The high winds of the jet stream are creating conditions that would make a summit attempt on Everest or Lhotse deadly or simply impossible. Typically the jet streams shifts in the beginning of May and for a few weeks summiting Everest becomes possible. By the end of may or beginning of June the monsoon season begins which means precipitation and snow storms. The only other window of opportunity to attempt Everest is the post monsoon season (Sept-Oct) but its typically not as good climbing weather and so the mountain sees a lot less ascents. Having said that I should mention that some world class climbers have made winter ascents of Everest!

Our trek today took us from 12,530′ (3820m) to 14,465′ (4410m). All around were spectacular glaciated peaks ranging from 20,000′ to 29,035′ (Everest).

The hike did not feel hard as it was nice and gradual. I can tell I am not 100% with my aerobic capacity because of this cold but it was definitely a huge improvement from yesterday. Our trek today covered 6.2 miles (10Kms) and a little under 2000 vertical feet (610m). We don’t cover greater distances on our trek to everest base camp because we need to acclimatize. The key to acclimatizing to extreme altitudes is to raise your sleeping altitude slowly, ideally averaging a gain of 1000 vertical feet per day. This is why tomorrow we are taking a day off before moving higher after our 2000 vertical gain today.

We are now, here at Mount Paradise Lodge in Dingboche, as high as the summits of the three highest peaks in the continental US (Mt. Whitney in California, Mt. Elbert and Mt. Massive in Colorado) and looking at how high Everest, Lhotse, and even Ama Dablam appear from here (at 14,465′) really drives it home just how enormous these mountains are! We are now almost exactly half way between sea level and the summit of Everest at 29,035′.

Once again the view from my room is unbelievable! The 22,477′ (6856m) Ama Dablam is literally in front of us and so it towers right above my bedroom window with its imposing north ridge. The massive tower of rock and ice fills up my whole window!

I am taking photos of these incredible views to share with you all in my final trip report.

Looking at all these giant mountains, the famous Himalayas, that I have dreamed of all my life, it is mind blowing to think that I have a chance to climb the highest of all mountains! I have to pinch myself to make sure I am not dreaming! I am really going to Everest!




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