|Our treks||Expeditions||Contact us||About us||Photos & Diaries|
Quite simply, we have a fantastic team
First, big thank-you to Martin. With a New York humour that twists anything and almost everything to the humorously cynical, he has kept everyone on their toes and allowed criticism to hit without hurting. The rest of the team have followed suit with our often sick humour allowed to flourish. There really have been tears of laughter.
Second, a heart-felt thank-you to Clive, whose meeting skills shine, and has raised many good discussion points that I have then been able to build on. Clive's politeness and aversion to toilet talk over dinner lasted until the morning most climbers headed off to Depot camp when he commented on the size, colour and variety of snot that he—and all of us—are experiencing over breakfast. It really is fantastical, but you probably didn't want to know that...
Jen, our doctor, has been attentive and careful, a valuable addition to the team. Tristan, the youngest member as he is frequently reminded, has fitted in perfectly as a normal climber, mature but not too mature, and gives as good as he gets.
Lastly, thanks to everyone on the team for the good times so far.
Clive at the puja, Jen in the background, and Dawa giving blessed tsampa - Jamie
It is such a pleasure to have a known and trusted crew. Even the new young gun, Jangbu, has trekked with us previously on one of the long Kanchenjunga exploratory treks. Nothing is too much trouble, and very little needs to be said, almost everything is done just as it should be.
Jangbu - Jamie
On our 3rd morning at ABC, I woke to my first beautifully clear view of Shishapangma. The plan for the day was the puja which the sherpas had prepared for us. I was unsure what to expect but I thought as long as the weather stayed clear it would be a very interesting event. We all sat on our sleeping mats waiting for the puja to begin and as the snow and hail started to hit the ground I felt very at home as if I was out in the Scottish mountains, I don’t think Alan shared my passion for the weather though, as he sat with bare feet as the snow started to fall around his feet.
The puja was filled with strange chanting and different traditions like throwing rice around the rock alter and applying tsampa flour to each others faces. Toward the end a bottle of whiskey appeared and was offered around the group. As we were all nearly frozen to the spot I was pleased to have a wee dram to warm me up. As I waited for my turn there was the usual dig about my age and how I still have 3 years till I am legal in the states [but is legal in Scotland]. We all thanked Dawa and Da’Yula for sharing with us a bit of their culture, and got ready for the day hike to Depot camp.
Many people had decided not to make the trek due to the deteriorating weather but being the young gun of the group I felt it was only right that I tried to make it. By the time I had messed around with my gear the sherpas, Francis and Clive had already left. I set off really wanting to catch up our two Tibetans who were carrying loads up. I could see their huge packs bouncing around in the distance. As I slowly gained on them my heart was pounding and I was breathing at an incredible rate. I was now concentrating on the Tibetans converse shoes which were slipping and sliding up the muddy slopes. When I eventually caught up with the main group the sun suddenly burst through the clouds and it was a great feeling when we eventually made it to Depot camp, where I was quite happy to sit in the sun while the sherpas were busy working away making tent platforms.
When we returned and Clive, an experienced mountaineer informed us that we
had beaten his best time for the last two years and I really felt as though I
had actually started my long ascent for the summit.