After a difficult descent from camp two yesterday, the climbing team had a restful day in base camp. Showers, laundry, cake and pie, while we watched weather roll in and out, continuing to coat the mountain in the fluffy white stuff trapping unlucky teams in the higher camps. Weather reports suggest more of the same over the next few days, so we’re planning our last break before the summit attempt to be at least five days long.
“I’ll be staying put in base camp, enjoying clean food and local day hikes,” said Rob Hill. “John and Darrell will move down the valley for a few nights and take a mental break from the mountain.”
We were visited by the National Geographic documentary filmmakers again today for follow-up interviews with Rob, John and John. These visits are a welcome distraction from the hours of the day and are a good reminder of the story behind this climb.
The visits are also an informative reminder that not all Everest expeditions receive the same level of service. Because of the relationship with Canada West Mountain School, the No Guts Know Glory expedition receives incredible service from our local infrastructure outfit – Himalayan Guides and Expeditions. Our cooks and support crew, including the outstanding Sherpa team assigned to us, provide incredible support. We’ve taken for granted the heat in our dining tent – apparently not all teams have this, even when they’ve paid more.
Last night, Raj our Sirdar and head cook, made a birthday cake for John’s soon to be wife – who’s back in Canada. Today, he baked us apple pie and hunted neighbouring camps for cold Cokes and Fanta for Rob. Our food is always fresh, impeccably cooked and flavourful. Each morning, the carpets in our dining tent are swept clean. “If I’m comparing camps to hotels, the Everest base camp we enjoy is like a Hyatt,” said John. “I’ve climbed all over the world, and most camps make a Motel 6 look luxurious. It’s so good up here that I’m going to have a hard time adjusting to a tea house lower down over the next few days. I have a feeling I’ll only be gone a night or two. Our support crew makes it hard to stay away.”