Everest Preparation, Part 2

Kathmandu to Everest Tibet Base Camp.

Kathmandu to Everest Tibet Base Camp.

Many people have been asking about Ralf's and my itinerary for our Everest trip. I thought I’d share it here. Obviously the exact dates will change according to weather and how the acclimatization is going.

April 5:

Fly from Frankfurt to Kathmandu.

April 6 - 9:

Hang out in Kathmandu, sightseeing and finalizing the packing and shopping for the next two months.

April 10:

With the German expedition company Amical, drive to the Nepal/Tibet border, spending the day getting ourselves and all of our stuff through Chinese customs.

April 11 & 12:

Start acclimatizing by spending two nights in the village of Nyalam (3,750m/12,300').

April 13 & 14:

Continue acclimatizing by spending two nights in the village of Tingri (4,348m/14,268').

April 15 - 20:

Drive to and stay at Everest Chinese base camp (5,200m/17,056’). Our expedition company will provide us with a tent for sleeping and a large kitchen tent to share with others who are on the same climbing permit. We will spend a few days here, acclimatizing and organizing the gear that will be taken by yaks to advance base camp (ABC).

April 20 & 21:

Sleep at an intermediate camp between base camp and ABC (6,187m/20,300’).

April 22 - 29:

Stay at ABC at 6,492m/21,300’. The distance between basecamp and ABC is 22km.

April 30:

First foray up to the North Col (7,000m/23,000’) for one or two nights.

May 1 & 2:

Stay at ABC (6,492m/21,300’).

May 3 - 6:

Second foray up to the North Col (7,000m/23,000’). Stay one night and carry on to Camp II at 7,600m/25,000’. Stay one or two nights at Camp II.

May 7 - 14:

Go all the way back to Basecamp for a week of rest and recovery. The elevation gains listed above are not much, but the altitude will really take its toll on our bodies.

May 15 until early June:

Wait for the right stretch of weather and go for the top! We will need a total of four days to go from ABC to the summit and back.

The weather in the European Alps did not cooperate these past two weeks. Gale force winds with heavy snow kept us training at lower altitudes in Bühl, Germany. The bike riding is really incredible for fitness training in the Black Forest - the other day we went up 1,500 vertical metres, including one single ascent of 900m. We rode until we were above the snow line, ate a huge piece of Black Forest cake and zoomed back down in a matter of minutes. There are 23,000km of trails in the Black Forest! It is my kind of riding - smooth, wide trails with lots of elevation gain. Coming down is so fast and fun!

Riding up the Schartenberg.

Riding up the Schartenberg.

To get our bodies used to carrying heavy packs, we hiked up a steep trail beside a beautiful waterfall, carrying 45-50 pounds of water on the way up. This particular hill isn’t very high, so we did the hike several times until our legs and backs cried “Uncle”. These days of training were not so fun, but necessary.

Carrying water uphill (!).

Carrying water uphill (!).

Ralf and I are feeling fit, packed, psyched and ready to go!