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  Everest 2006 Nepal side: Dirk Stephan getting caught up on the way to Everest...


©EverestNews.com

March 5th: Due to the worst snowfall since 10 years, over 500 flights in and out of Frankfurt were cancelled. My plane did divert to Munic, because the airport was closed. Seven Hours later, it arrived finally in FRA. Thus, my connecting flight out of Abu Dhabi was lost. I had to wait for about 13 hours, to continue via Muscat to Kathmandu, where I arrived about half a day late. Although I did not sleep for two nights, I arranged to do lots of work today. First I checked paperwork with my trekking agent, thereafter I topped up my equipment by 20 kgs more, having now 70 kg in total.
After final preps are finished, (2-3) days, I will set up to the mountains to start with the akklimatization process. Unfortunately, my mobile does not work, communications have to be done via Internet or via Satphone.

All the best, Dirk

This morning I was ruggedly awoken by Pasang. Obviously I had falsely set my clock for one hour. Now I realize why yesterday everybody seemed to wait for me....... The flight from Kathmandu to Lukla is both pure excitement and spectacular at the same time. Shortly the smogdome of Kathmandu is broken-through by the small twin-engine turboprop and clears the view to the roof of the world's snowcapped summits! Underneath I see terraced cultivated land. Hairbreadth we browse a pass, the altimeter shows 3.000m, promptly the airplane is pulled down, then I can see the increasing runway, ending at a mountain's face. We expose roughly, break violently, the pilot immediately turns the airplane 180 grade and slows down. Here we are!
Starting from now I have to rely on my own strength and interaction. No streets, at the utmost unhitched tracks up to the base camp of the Mt. Everest!
Every evening the military seals off Lukla, maostic rebels controls the area underneath the airfield. 16.000 people have fallen victim to the civil war.

To be continued

Best regards Dirk

March 21, 2006: First night in the mountains is unaccustomed. It appears that thousands of dogs are barking all night long. In a moment of silence one of them starts once again and encourages the whole pride of Lukla to continue. Sometime the bark finally stops, instead the rats start to race on the roof. After falling asleep nightmares bother my sleep. Drenched in sweat I wake up again and again. 7 o'clock I wake up, knocked out, it's cold and the jet lag takes its toll. I have cereals with protein powder and tea with milk for breakfast and start walking at 8 o'clock.
I am accompanied by Ngima, who was a monastery monk for 14 years, now a family man, owning a Lodge in Lukla. Bored by the monotonous prayer, he says.
It's good to climb again. In almost 4 hours we reach Monjo, 10 km off, 500 elevation gain up and down. We spend the night at Mt. Kailash' Lodge. I meet someone from Iceland, he has woolly hats and pullovers manufactured in Nepal using wool from down under and sells the goods to Iceland. I used to think of icelandic pullovers as a prototype of pure icelandic economy. That's globalization, the Icelandic grins. The evening was enjoyable. The owner of the Lodge has jazz music and the other guests are very amusing. A Japanese couple is traveling for two years, having a lot to tell. This night is much quiter, despite bothering nightmares.

Dirk Stephan

Dispatch Index

 

 

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