Day 23

The 22nd had us going up Pumori. I felt as if I was wake the whole night but was pretty rested when I got up. Altitude causes sleeplessness.
It was as if we climbed another mountain. The snow had dramatically cleared. Elizabeth not feeling 100% and I ventured on. Our tour to many would mean we were severely off course but we prefered to call it the scenic route. We were 2 ridges off when we saw where we supposed to be and so we scrambled through rock to get there. We then found a rock to huddle under to escape the icy winds and rehydrate ourselves.
Basecamp was insight and always seemed closer than it was. We decided to go the longer route on land and balance on rocks rather than trek through snow which is always harder and more chance of slipping and your leg falling in up to your thigh.
Finally we were at basecamp with no other hikers insight and clouds coming in from the town before basecamp way. At one stage basecamp was sunny but clouds surround us from higher up. A little snack in some shelter and we were back on trek…literally. At another fork in the road we had to decide left or right and both had patchy paths. We decided on the left which took us to a ridge.
From the ridge the path looked evident way yonder…but to get to way yonder there wasn’t really a path. Stuck with going back to the ‘path turning right’, and clouds, potential weather and time ticking or taking a chance, we decided to take a chance.
This meant literally sliding on our bottoms with the extra load of stones and gravel to accompany us. Elizabeth went first and after her 100m slide it was my turn….she had certainly made it look easier than it was. Not the best mountaineer tales I made sure she was safe behind a big rock and then slid from hopefully one secure rock to the next while the small rocks and stones continued to fall down below. We made a clear dent in the rubble. After this there was scrambling and we weren’t sure if that lead to a drop off or land. Having just faith we balanced again on rocks thankful to have sticks to stabalize us and then we touched land.
After land we had to get back to the main path, passing many old pray flag’s we started seeing footprints and pole markings noting recent human activity.
Then there we were on a home ward bound mission. Later we would look up and literally see our path indented in the rubble.
Although we hadn’t aclimitizated as high as we had wanted we had done alot of walking, getting that blood moving and we came back to tell the tale with a smile on our faces, adventure in our eyes and blessed to have no injuries and an early night!
Donations
As always Thandi from CHOC and Cupcake from Cupcakes4kids just can’t get enough of the snow! Please help support kids with cancer by going and donating to
www.everest2015.co.za/Cupcakes4Kids or www.everest2015.co.za/CHOC

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