Lobuche to Gorep Shep to Kala Patar to Gorap Shep to Lobuche
 Today was the day that this expedition was based around reaching the summit of Kala Patar.
It’s starts with a knock on the door at 2:45 giving us 15 mins to get dressed in temperatures of -15 then a quick cup of tea and off.
We exit the lodge into total darkness it’s clear sky but no visible moon and a temperature of -15 we all put on our head torches and off we go following BB our guide.
We keep a metre between us and rely on BB years of experience for the next 2/3 hours to get us through the darkness. It looked great when you looked back at the row of LED lights marching along in unison.
For the next few hours its all up hill, and dawn finally breaks we can turn off our head torches and and see the direction we’re going in, the terrain is very baron we even leave behind the heather.It takes us 3 and half hours to get Gorak Shep there we have breakfast more tea and then the the big trek begins.
It’s a short walk across almost beach like terrain and then you look up.
For the next hour it was all up with little time to catch your breath in the thin air we are now trekking in oxygen levels 50% lower than normal.
We now trek along a “Dirty Glazier”this is ice covered with rocks and boulders, we are still moving upwards. This is really testing our energy levels and then to our right on the other side of the Khumbu valley there an avalanche we see the snow and ice rolling down the mountain side. We’ve been moving forwards but mainly upwards for 2hours you can not measure this in distance traveled its all in time and height. We finally get to the point that we can see the summit with its prayer flags and shrines we stop to take breath in the very thin air, now it’s the last push to the top.
It takes us another hour to get close to the summit with 30 metres to go we decide to let Swinge be first to reach his and our goal.
30 meters takes another 30 minuets we all drag our tiered bodies to the top for a very emotional celebration of an achievement we’ve all worked hard to complete.
As we stand on the top of Kala Patar we look down on Base Camp and across to the peak of Mount Everest at this height and very close we also see Pu Mori  Nuptse Makalu Ama Dablam far to the right.
At this point I leave a prayer flag in the form of a Cornish tartan linked with a poppy in memory of James Allen my chosen charity for this expedition.
One more task to complete before we descend, we build a small rock shrine and scatter the ashes of Andy Tyler a good friend of many of us, and then a moments silence to remember ” absence friends “.
We start to descend the pace is still very slow we know we still got many hours ahead before we get back to  Lobuche.
The first few hours are over familiar territory back across the glaziers then we travel over an area we couldn’t see in the dark some 12 hours earlier today.
We reach our lodge at Lobuche at 5 o’clock dinner is served at 6 but most of us struggle to eat through tiredness and exhaustgen.
We’ve achieved in completing a journey that most people can only dream about, with a group of people that have linked together as a strong team guided by strength and love from those at home.
Steve and the Drek Trek Team

Cornwall Flag left at Kala Pattar in view of Everest

22 Comments

  1. Jerry says: November 19, 2012 • 15:41:54

    Fantastic! I am so impressed by what you have achieved and delighted that you finally made it. Very well done.

  2. David and Christine STevens says: November 19, 2012 • 15:55:39

    Very moving story and really made me cry now my make up is smudged!!! and as for David I keep telling him to wear waterproof mascara but does he listen! Seriously what an amazing achievement carried out by you all but shame about Jerry, however he will be in safe hands. Looking forward to seeing you on your return to Kernow but in the meantime KEEP TREKKING!!!

  3. Lizzie says: November 19, 2012 • 16:44:32

    My goodness me what an amazing and emotional account of your magnificent achievement. Words cannot express just how proud I am of you, Jimmy Swinge and you too Tom, well done . Treasure the memories of this once in a life time experience and come safely home.x love from us all, Lizzie xxx

  4. sally says: November 19, 2012 • 18:02:13

    Wow. What a fantastic achievement. Love to you all. Andy the ladies at The Priory are looking forward to your slideshow and presentation. I have booked the room and Mary is selling tickets !!!!!!!! lots of love Sally xxxxxxxx

  5. Gail says: November 19, 2012 • 19:32:14

    Very moving account, so pleased for you Jim to have achieved your dream and much much more. Many many congratulations to you and all the team we have enjoyed reading the blog. Take care on the return journey look forward to hearing more on your return home. Hope you are doing ok Alan. xx

  6. Swinge says: November 19, 2012 • 19:59:06

    Very moving account of the longest day, I can’t begin to imagine how tough it was. Well done to you all, what a fantastic achievement. So thrilled for you all and so proud of the Drek Trek team. Looking forward to seeing you all at the big breakfast.. Safe journey, much love to you all. Special hugs for Jim and Tom xxxxx

  7. Christine Thompson says: November 19, 2012 • 20:03:55

    Well done everyone,I am exhausted just reading your description of the last ‘push’ to Kala Pattar.
    Enjoy the return journey and savour your achievement. Much love to Mike + Will

  8. Fi says: November 19, 2012 • 20:36:50

    Incredible achievement – congratulations to you all. Looking forward to seeing you safe back home, hopefully with appetites restored!

    Much love to the Swinges from Fi & family xxx

  9. joe griffin says: November 19, 2012 • 20:50:33

    I am in awe at what you have done and so proud of Phil and Steve who I view as brothers. So pleased Chris and my godson Rob did the trip.
    What a story to tell…amazing strength of character.
    Love and admiration.
    Joe

  10. Judith & Chris says: November 19, 2012 • 21:07:27

    I just read your last report & it filled me with emotion, we can’t begin to imagine what you’ve all achieved, I feel it’s very humbling. It’s been such a privilege sharing your journey with you & your families. Really brilliant! Love to Phil, Rob, Steve & Chris x

  11. Jen Pentecost says: November 19, 2012 • 21:26:12

    Dad, I love you so much and you Chris my brother. I’m so proud of you both and love to you Uncle Phil and my cousin Rob. I’m lying here reading your words through my tears. I know what an amazing experience for you to have all shared along with the rest of the Drek Trek team and friendships and memories forged forever. Can’t wait to see you. Wishing you all well on the rest of this adventure and look forward to seeing you on Sunday. Ps our scan went well. Baby Best 3rd is cooking nicely!! Xxx

  12. cath pentecost says: November 19, 2012 • 21:38:00

    So So proud of everyone especialy the Pentecost boys 🙂 Really enjoying the blogs even though they make me cry!! Cant wait to have you home. Cath xxx

  13. Jan and Jill says: November 19, 2012 • 21:42:10

    Very moving account of the last days climb – Although we spoke with you on Saturday we are now actually speechless and moved to tears, can´t begin to imagine what you all must have gone through to achieve your goal. We hope the next few days will be a little easier and that you have the time and energy to enjoy the remainder of your great adventure. Well done all Trekkers but huge hugs and love to our wonderful boys Phil, Steve, Chris abnd Rob XXXXX

  14. Ginny Lean says: November 19, 2012 • 22:52:39

    So proud of you, you have all worked so hard and this sounds like such a moving and memorable occasion for you all.
    Its hard to imagine what you are actually experiencing and even what it looks like where you are. I guess none of you will ever forget this moment.
    It feels like you have been gone for such a long time now and I think were all longing for you to get home safely and start to tell us all about it even though you probably cant put it into words.
    Beano, you are a legend! We are all so proud that you have been part of this amazing opportunity and reached the goal! Take care, see you soon xxxxxxxxx

  15. Maxine milliner, Stuart Milliner, F.D says: November 20, 2012 • 10:48:33

    Just fantastic! Congratulations Dad and the drektrek team! We are extremely proud and are looking forward to seeing you again! You have been missed. Good luck on the way back. X

  16. David Mahoney says: November 20, 2012 • 11:30:50

    Like everyone else I am finding it incredibly moving and am astonished at what you have all achIeved . Cannot wait to see you all back safely and hear all the stories . Well done everyone XXX

  17. Loren says: November 20, 2012 • 12:24:02

    What an achievement guys, So very proud of you 🙂 Steve (favver) Phil, Rob and the rest of the trekkers, last but definitely not the least my very special, amazing Chris (Kiss) kiss I have missed you so very much, and thought about you and the rest of the trekkers every minute of the day and prayed that you are all kept safe and well 🙂 Treasure every moment of this wonderful experience. I can’t wait to see you on your return. Be safe on your journey home sending you big hugs, loads of soft kisses and loads and loads of love to you my kiss. Love always xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxo

  18. Charlotte milliner says: November 20, 2012 • 20:41:42

    Keep Calm
    And
    Keep Trekking

    hi dad! Well done! You have done it! Now you can look down over the world with an eagle eye! I hope you have finally found your ‘inner peace’ hehe…… Love you so much and I am so proud xxx

  19. Maxine Milliner says: November 20, 2012 • 21:20:48

    What an amazing adventure for you all. We are all so very proud of your achievements (and there must have been a great many along the way). We are all so looking forward to you all arriving home safely and know that our continued support and love will be following you closely. Take care of yourselves, enjoy these final days together and celebrate this unbelievable achievement. A fantastic effort. WELL DONE JIM XX, Big hugs Alan, love you lots xxxxxxxxx

  20. Freya Rawling says: November 20, 2012 • 21:34:37

    Well done Papa Jim! You’re an inspiration to all of us in London; we’re so incredibely proud of you. It must be so beauitful there and we’re looking forward to hearing all your stories when we next see you xxxxx

  21. Gerry Aukett says: November 21, 2012 • 17:55:48

    Great achievment, well done lads. sounds like you left Andy in a great place, RIP. Look forward to seeing you all for a pint very soon. Very proud of you all. Gerry Aukett x

  22. Treggy says: November 22, 2012 • 08:38:38

    Morning Chaps

    The ultimate accolade has been achieved as i opened my West Briton this morning your faces loomed large and it served to remind me what a fantastic achievement you have attained together. Have a great couple of days in Katmandu and i look forward to seeing you all on your triumphal return.

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