Preparing Yourself for A Journey to the Great Everest! (part 2)
So you’ve read about physical training, mental preparation, and so does the gear-food-water preparation—now what’s next?
- Slow but Sure
Mountains are meant to be enjoyed, it’s not merely a prize of a competition. There’s no need to rush to get to the top of it, the most important thing is to enjoy the journey! Not just for the Everest, every long trek/hike is more of a marathon than a sprint. Taking some days to acclimatize is critical, so your body can get used to the low levels of oxygen in the mountain. Ian Taylor, an expert trekker said that researchers suggest trekkers to spend more time at 3500m, so for the Everest trek usually people will spend 3 nights acclimatizing at the Namche Bazaar. This is the key to your journey’s success. The more you acclimatize, the more enjoyable your journey is. While you’re on your trek, you also shouldn’t walk in a fast pace, instead you can just walk at a pace that is comfortable enough to be done while having a conversation with your trekking mates.
7. The Strong Sun
The closer you are to the top of the mountain, the sun will have stronger effect on you, since the UV protection levels are getting lower and lower up there. To cover yourself from the sun not only good for avoiding skin cancer, but it also good to keep yourself away from being dehydrated. The sun rays could be harsh up there, and dehydration can lead to many problems during your trekking journey (not-that-simple headache, for example). You can try to apply the SPF 50 sunblock/sunscreen on your body, or wear that sun hat.
8. Save Some Space to Bring Something for the Locals!
A little hospitality for the locals wouldn’t bring you any burden. The way up to Everest Base Camp will lead you to a path where you would walk trough local villages, and it would be very interesting to see how they live in such a high altitude! While spending your time experiencing in these local villages, it would be nice if you bring some tiny gifts for the locals along the way—especially for the children. You can give them small toys, coloring books, crayons, colored pencils, little trinkets or souvenirs from your hometown. Try to give things that could have special meanings for those who receive it, so instead of giving them sweets try to bring along those aforementioned small gifts.
9. A Little Headache will be Just Fine
Some people are likely to experience some sort of headaches during their trip at high altitudes. Don’t worry, that’s totally normal! One of the most common cause of the headache is dehydration, so you can just drink plenty of water to eliminate the ache. Still taken from the words of expert trekker Ian Taylor, he suggests that there’s another trick to cure the headache, which are taking Disprin every morning and evening (to reduce headaches caused by the thickening of our blood at such high altitude—yes, it helps thinning out our blood slightly), and taking Ibuprofen to help reduce inflammation and pressure in our brain. But keep in mind that eventhough we can cure the headache by ourselves, if the headache becomes worse (that it limits your ability to walk or think straight) make sure that you seek medical help as soon as possible.
10. Enjoy the Trek!
It may sounds really simple but it is often forgotten by many—enjoy the trek! You’re not in a competition. You don’t have to climb the fastest. Generally you will walk for 6 hours a day (some days it could be longer, but that’s normal), therefore you will have plenty of time to rest, get relaxed, and have a conversation and some laughs with your fellow trekkers. You’ll transit at some tea houses, and your time there should be positive and relaxed instead of nervous and tense. Exchanging stories with one another, getting to know local cultures or maybe experiencing some local customs, aren’t that great ideas to spend your time while on your way to the great Everest! The mountain is welcoming you with an open arm, so why don’t you embrace it gleefully? 😉
Text : Nadia Maya Ardiani
Images : Swapnil Vithaldas & Christopher Burns on Unsplash