First views of Mt Everest
Enjoying drinks and views of Everest & Ama Dablam from the Everest View Hotel. Everest has the cloud plume coming off it.
Location: Namche Baazar
Local Time: 26th March, 5:30pm
Weather: Fine, 16C
Hi all - Fiona here again,
We've been enjoying another acclimatisation day here in Namche - but instead of the rigorous bakery tour schedule of yesterday, we actually did a bit of walking and exploring.
Views of Everest
We started the day with a hearty breakfast (porridge, Sherpa tea, and omelette) and then the four of us took a short walk up a hill near our campsite where we got our first sighting of Mt Everest. From this far away, it's difficult to tell that it's taller than some of the closer mountains. However, the huge cloud plume coming off the top gave it's size away. It was kind of strange to actually see it in the flesh. From here it looks massive, but with relatively gentle slopes when compared to some of the smaller mountains that have extremely steep sides. Everest almost looks peaceful - but with that cloud plume indicating high winds, I know that it would be anything but peaceful up there today.
After taking in the view, we continued onwards on a walk aimed at assisting our acclimatisation. The first hour or so was steeply uphill until we reached the ridge above Namche. We continued on a little further until we got to the famous Everest View Hotel. Here guests fly in on helicopter, are quickly given oxygen masks and taken by yak to the hotel where they are put inside a pressurised room. Without this, guests would soon be feeling very ill from the altitude as they would not have had time to acclimatise. But for us and the other trekkers, we were able to sit outside comfortably and ordered cold drinks and real coffee. Chris and I (to a lesser extent) had been thinking about this coffee for quite a while. The views from here were absolutely amazing - like we were sitting inside a postcard. Not only could we see Everest (now with an even bigger cloud plume pouring off the top), but we could also see Lhotse, Ama Dablam and lots more. The weather has been extremely kind to us so far - giving us beautiful clear days. Hopefully this will continue further up.
Khumjung and Khunde townships
After sitting for quite a while at the Everest View Hotel, we got going again and walked through the townships of Khumjung and Khunde. We visited the local school (the one Edmund Hilary founded), the hospital, and the monastery. Inside the monastery we viewed the supposed Yetti skull - very hairy but not especially convincing! The monastery itself was very brightly decorated with lots of buddist images and coloured fabrics. There was a group of monks chatting casually out the front.
It was interesting wandering through these towns, which were clearly a lot less tourist oriented than Namche. We saw lots more people at work in the fields, building works going on, but lots of people seemed pretty relaxed - playing card games, chatting in the streets, and gathering in shops.
The real highlight - hot showers
After our walk, we returned to the teahouse where Chris and Bridget are staying and all enjoyed a hot shower. After only 4 days of grubbiness, this felt amazing.
Tomorrow, our plan is to get moving again and head up to Deboche.
Bye for now,
Posted by: Damien on March 26, 2006 11:31 PM AEST
Wow, there she is! Great photo. Like you said, it looks like you are in a postcard. Must be awsome to finally see the highest point in the world. Well done guys. Love Dame
Posted by: Deb, Ned, and Holly Jordan on March 26, 2006 11:45 PM AEST
If not for that plume, it looks so peaceful ... so blue-skied beautiful! Enjoy! And ... what types really do fly in in helicopters hey!
Posted by: Valerie on March 27, 2006 01:07 AM AEST
I feel as if I'm there with you. What a beautiful first view of Mt. Everest. Cheers---Valerie
Posted by: Kirk on March 27, 2006 01:14 AM AEST
I will be following in your footsteps in three weeks, heading for Kala Pattar. It's great to get the travelog in advance. Good luck with the climb.
Posted by: Liane and QECVI English Students on March 27, 2006 02:13 AM AEST
Hi Fiona and Paul!
We are still cheering you on from our grade 9 class (ages 14-15) in Canada! The novel we are reading right now follows some teenage Everest climbers. Have you met any very young climbers? We had heard that a young Australian (Chris somebody?) was planning an ascent this year. We are especially interested in the effects of the thin air and were glad to hear that you are both doing well. Happy trekking! We look forward to reading your daily updates. Best wishes from your friends in Canada!!
Posted by: Liane Penny on March 27, 2006 02:24 AM AEST
Liane from Canada here. Can you ask Mingma Sherpa if he is the same Mingma who climbed with Shaunna Burke and Ben Webster two years ago on Team Discovery? They are Canadians who were filming a documentary (along with Andrew Locke and Hector Ponce de Leon) on climbing Everest. Shaunna Burke came to our school last year and spoke to my students about her Everest experiences, and we have watched their Everest documentary in which Mingma is featured.
Posted by: Julia on March 27, 2006 05:06 AM AEST
Hey guys, glad to know everything is going good. Inna sent me the link today so I browsed through it a bit. The pictures look great and all the villages are so interesting. keep going! I'm going to Australia next July for an exchange program with RMIT, so I'm sure I'll hear more details. Later!
Posted by: Jean-Francois Gagne on March 27, 2006 05:27 AM AEST
Hello Fiona and Paul,
We were in Australia last week. We saw a report on 7 with Mel and Koshie about your Climb of Everest. We were all very interested about your endeavour. We would like to wish you a safe journey and hope you accomplish your ultimate goal: be on top of the world.
Cheers from Canada!
Jean-Francois and Francine.
Posted by: Daryl on March 27, 2006 07:14 AM AEST
Did any of those day-trippers ask for a soy decaf late
Posted by: John Parncutt on March 27, 2006 08:10 AM AEST
Like so many others I have been following your footsteps on-line for the last few weeks, amazed and inspired at first, and now hooked on the beauty and adventure of it all. I can't wait to see the photo of the two of you on the summit.
Posted by: Maddi and DP on March 27, 2006 08:14 AM AEST
Glad to hear everything is going well. The views are amazing and are flooding us with memories. So jealous (at least at this stage of your trip!). We hope the sun continues to shine.
Love Maddi and DP xx
Posted by: MC on March 27, 2006 09:16 AM AEST
The scenery seems to be getting even more beautiful...what a great moment, your first view of Everest! Glad to hear you were able to get a "real" cup of coffee...very important. I hope you have a backbacker's espresso machine. They are tiny and do not add weight. A necessity in my book! (Although, I know tea is the drink of choice where you are.)
Regarding the young climber that the QECVI English Students asked about, his name is Christopher Harris. He is climbing with 7summits.com on the north side of Everest. If he summits, he will be the youngest person to climb Everest beating out Sherpa Ming Kipa who summited in 2003.
Enjoy all the scenery and beautiful cultural experiences around you.
p.s. That helicopter/oxygen mask/pressurized room thing doesn't sound all that good. I'll take the way you are doing it anyday!
Posted by: Roland Rocchiccioli on March 27, 2006 09:31 AM AEST
Hi Paul and Fiona
I have been thinking about you and wondering how it's all going. The site makes for such interesting reading. I am so envious of you being able to do such a thing. The photograph shouing the view of the mountain looks sensational. I guess you are at the stage where it is the calm before the storm - if you know what I mean. I am writing the piece on your trip at this momenet. It is such an enjoyable task. I shall follow you efforts with great interest. It is a pity one of the news papers is not running a daily or weekly diary.
I shall keep in touch.
Take care - I send love and blessings.
Posted by: Lucinda & Chris on March 27, 2006 01:28 PM AEST
Hi Paul & Fiona, Chris & Bridget,
Glad to hear all is going well and you have managed a glimpse of what is to come. We're loving all the updates - as Beck mentioned in an earlier message, checking this website is becoming a daily event! Keep up the good work and the great messages!
Love Lou & Chris
Posted by: Max and Judy on March 27, 2006 02:01 PM AEST
Hi Paul and Fiona best wishes to you both. Would have sent an email earlier but our phone has been U/S for 7 days back on today. 27/3
Go team Adler
max and Judy
Posted by: Jan Garrard on March 27, 2006 02:37 PM AEST
Hi gals & guys
Wow..what an adventure, stunning places and people. Thanks for sharing it all with us! Particularly liked hearing about car-free parts of Nepal - I'll bet their yak toll is better than our road toll! And my bet is that there aren't a lot of overweight people in Nepal.
PS cycling gold to Aussies in men's and women's road races yesterday.
Lots a luv, Jan
Posted by: Eliza & Jordan Griffiths on March 27, 2006 06:51 PM AEST
again another great update. We are enjoying hearing about your adventures - there is a real contrast been your day and ours... today, got up, had a coffee, drove to work, turned on computer and then attended some meetings. We did this all while you were probably enjoying the view and sipping your coffee. Aren't you jealous!!
Anyway, where off to the local pub for a pot and parma (again - I bet you're jealous). We'll toast to your good health.
Update from the cycling, there were thousands out to watch the womens and mens.
Womens - Natalie Bates won the womens race by about 4 mins after breaking away with 2 1/2 laps to go - it was a long ride alone with the 30 degress sun, but she obviously made it. Second also to Oenie Wood in sprint finish.
Men - Matty Hayman won the mens by 47 secs after extending away from the 3 man breakaway on the last lap going up darling st & punt road. Was a fitting finish to the comm games and Allan Davis picked up third behind on of the south africans.
The closing ceremony was pretty good as well with a lot of fireworks!!
love Eliza and Jordan
Posted by: Dad and Mary on March 27, 2006 08:53 PM AEST
It all looks so beautiful! Have you met any more yettis?
Have finished with the Games, now it is down to training for me.
You will be pleased to know we are hitting the walking trail. Off to Bendigo (short walk) then walking from Creswick to Ballarat and catching up with Dame then more walking the next day!! (nothing compared with you guys though!)
Saw Mike tonight and he says "Hi"
lots of love
Dad and Mare xx
Posted by: Phil on April 26, 2006 10:01 PM AEST
Hi Fiona and Paul,
Hunting around for a climb to follow I found your website. All the best for the next month or so and good luck for your summit day - whenever it will be. Will look forward with interest to hearing and seeing more.