Thursday, 13 September 2007

Safe arrival at base camp

After 36hrs in a truck on some of the worst roads I have ever seen we arrived at Base Camp (BC) 5,000m. It was good to finally arrive and apart from being very tired I felt very well. It was also very good to meet with the rest of the team who had been there for 2 days after travelling slowly over 7 days from Kathmandu.

The following day I was allowed to join the rest of the team for a small walk up behind BC to practice using various pieces of equipment. We climbed 180m and it took nearly an hour. In Chamonix I was able to do 600m in an hour! Russell said that the team were leaving for ABC camp the following day and that it would probably be better for me to stay down at BC for a couple of days but he would reserve judgement until after the doctor had given me the once over. Doctor gave me the once over and said that my blood pressure was as if I were at sea level which was exceptional. My oxygen saturation level was 82% which was also very very good for 5,000m (although with anything under 90% in the UK you would be sent to hosital straight away), and my resting heart rate was 80 which again was very acceptable. They therefore gave me the option of starting the journey with the rest of the team to Advance Base Camp (ABC) which I obviously took as I wanted to continue to bond with the rest of the team wih which I will be climbing with over the next month.

We set off in a truck from BC to interim BC camp (approx 1hr and 400m rise). From here on it will all be by foot. We walked for 4 1/2hrs rising a total of 500m and falling by 200m i.e. it was a lot of up and down. As I arrived in ABC, I was beginning to get a headache but other than that I had a good appetite. It was from here that we gor out first good view of the splendour of the mountain that we are going to get to know very well over the next few weeks.

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