The 40 (or more!) day journey to the top of the world

The 40 (or more!) day journey to the top of the world

Climbing Mount Everest is a task famously known for its daunting nature and numerous uncertainties. Whether you’re considering the thrill or just want to live vicariously, climbing to the top of the world is certainly no weekend trip. Here’s a peek at the timeline to reach the peak. It’s long, with the average expedition lasting 40 days and all timelines subject to weather-related delays or other changes.

Heat and Ice – Contrast Recovery Protocol

Heat and Ice – Contrast Recovery Protocol

Climbing a mountain is no easy feat. Although I trained [hard] for a year before attempting to summit Mount Everest in the spring of 2018, I still fell victim to health issues that prevented me from reaching the top. This time, I’m employing some new techniques to help my body learn to recover more efficiently. My goal is to train harder and therefore be even more prepared to summit on my next attempt in April 2019. The first is heat and ice contrast therapy, which helps the body learn to rapidly adapt to changing conditions. The below information is from my friends at Symmetry. They’re the real experts, and I encourage you to check them out!

Your body’s most basic stress relief – breathing

Your body’s most basic stress relief – breathing

Let’s talk about stress. No, not that stress. You’re probably thinking about the stress of your schedule or of the bills coming up. I’m talking about your body’s stress response. Whether it’s responding to extreme temperatures or trying to keep up with a tough workout, how your body responds can affect its performance! Want to improve your performance? Improve your body’s response to stress at its most basic level…breath.

Rest and acclimatization at Camp 2

April 25, 2018, was a rest day for us. We slept in until about 8:30 a.m. and had some fantastic pancakes, bacon and a fried egg, which was wonderful. Along with my SFuels drinks and bars of course, I’m staying well-nourished.

Acclimatization walk and the Lhotse Face
Today, we planned a short acclimatization walk to see what will likely be our biggest challenge to date –the Lhotse Face. The Lhotse Face is between Camp 2 and Camp 3. This 3,600-foot wall of ice has pitches of 40 to 50 degrees, an incredibly steep climb.

I’ve included some photos here of the Lhotse Face, which show some people working their way up. Although the Lhotse Face is going to be a challenge, we’re all excited about it because it’s what’s going to get us to the main part of Mount Everest.
 

Lhotse Face

Lhotse Face

Return to base camp
That short journey took about two hours. Then we came back to our camp, ate lunch and relaxed. The plan tonight is to have an early dinner, go to sleep early and get up around 3:30 a.m. to head back down to Everest Base Camp. We will probably rest there for about five days before our second rotation, which involves coming back to each camp we have been to so far.

After that, we’ll head up to Camp 3 and spend the night there without supplemental oxygen (we’ll use that later) before moving back down to base camp to acclimate and rest again while we wait for a summit window. Ideally, we’ll watch for a summit window about five days from our return to base camp, because that’s how long it will take us to move back through all the camps to be in position for a summit bed from the South Col. The South Col, a sharp-edged pass between Lhotse and the Everest summit, is where we’ll find Camp 4 (an elevation of about 25,938 feet).