Thursday, April 8, 2010

Safe arrival at Everest Basecamp!

I have safely arrived at Everest Basecamp. How cool is this? I am presently sitting at 17,500’ A.S.L. typing away on our fantastically reliable GD8000 computer. The weather has been absolutely fantastic. Not one cloud in the sky every single day and very warm temperatures. As well, there has been a slight breeze to keep the trekking to basecamp manageable.


Actually, we are one day ahead of schedule. Since the team is all very strong and healthy we decided to skip the last village of Gorak Shep and trek all the way to basecamp. I am positively dumbfounded at the facilities and amenities we have here. I will elaborate more on these luxuries at a later time.

So what is in store for the next couple of days? I need to acclimate to this altitude so the name of the game is rest, rest, and more rest, at least for a couple of days. Tomorrow we will have our puja ceremony. This is another Buddhist ceremony in which a local lama will come to our basecamp. The sherpas have built a chorten or alter and will string out 5 strands of prayer flags. A little rice throwing, some prayers, dancing and drinking will be just enough for the sherpas to feel safe and secure. The following day they will begin carrying loads of gear up the mountain in order to help us build and supply our camps. Of course I will be respectful but will chose to sit this ceremony out. In a few days we will begin to wander into the icefall. This is the most spectacular portion of the Southside route on Mount Everest. We will come back to rest a few more days and then make our first foray all the way through the icefall and sleep at Camp 1.

Since my computer and satellite connection are much more reliable now I will be able to provide updates much more frequently. Thank you to everyone who has kept the team and I in your prayers. A special measure of thanks to those who have prayed specifically for my back. So far, no problems. My back is feeling fine.

Thanks for following along. More to come later. Is that fresh bread I smell?

11 comments:

Mom said...

Ben - we are so excited at the progress. And what beautiful pictures - yes, breathtaking for sure! I know how hard it is for you to "rest," but what a perfect opportunity, again, to reflect on God's grace and mercies, and to "be still and know that He [JEHOVAH] is God! We are praying for continued good health and safety for ALL of you!

Much love,
Mom and Dad

Diana said...

It was so great talking to you this morning. Keep eating that fresh bread and all the yummy food the sherpas are preparing so you have strength and energy. So excited for you!
Love,
Diana & Alexander

Dad said...

Hey Son, I am praying that the Lord will continue to give you acceptable weather for the trek up the mountain. Mom and I are taking Alexander out for some fun Friday eve and are looking forward to that. Things around here are clicking along fine. Hope you get the rest you need. Mom and I love you much and will load up heaven with our prayers. Hang tough and keep looking up.

your friend, nic said...

Dude how could you skip Gorak Shep I hear their 6 flags is the best in the world. Praying for you and those helpers. Its a neat perspective having you in my life even if it were just because of the alpinism (given my dad). -But there's much more because we worship the Lord as brothers. Breathe in that goodness and I'll do the same out in Chicago. Word up

Bryce said...

Ben, Do you know what your doing?:)
Congrats and keep up the good work. Looks GORGEOUS. Everybody is pulling for you and remember Ben Don't Be G--. Be smart, be safe and most of all reach the summit.

Brian & Melissa said...

We LOVE the photos.... awesome!

- Brian & Melissa Tardiff

Anonymous said...

Love the pics and daily updates!!! Everyone in combat class misses you! Another interesting sauna debate last night...:) Be safe!

Jolene (and all your combat friends)

Anonymous said...

Hey Ben, its Sharon from class! I just wanted to give you a shout and and tell you I love the blog and the pics!!! Be safe and we look forward to your return to class and all the great stories you will have for us in the sauna!!! :)

The Doctor said...

Keep it up! I've got friends here in H-town who don't even know you but are praying for you too. You can do it!

Gavin Attwood said...

Ben, Great that you are safe & healthy at base camp. With the risk of being repetitive Amy and I are also adding our prayers for your success. Never forget the words of Michelangelo, "The greater danger for most of us lies not in setting our aim too high and falling short; but in setting our aim too low, and achieving our mark." Aim High and God speed!
Gavin

Doug Whittier said...

Way to go Ben..! Keep at it and thanks for the updates, it's great following along from afar...
God Bless..!