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  Mt Everest 2006: Alpine Ascents Everest 2006: April 3 - Deboche


 

Friends, family and loved ones, A fresh coat of white covered our world when we woke up this morning in Khumjung. Clear skies and intense sunshine soon melted the snow of the trail. We split up this morning to allow for some customized sightseeing. Dave and our three medical climbers headed of to the Khunde Clinic. They were well received and got the grand tour of the facilities. As a bonus, it was immunization day so they got to see dozens of pretty babies. They rest of us went for the culturally interesting tour of the Khumjung Gompa. This monastery, with it’s ornately painted interior, is home of the world famous Yeti scalp. And for a small donation we were allowed a viewing of the hairy hemisphere. Way cool.

Then it was off to the Tengboche Monastery, a world heritage site that is the most important Buddhist religious center in the Khumbu region. This Gompa is a must see for all visitors to this valley. Not only did we tour it, we heard the monks chanting and got a great view of Everest reaching up out of the clouds. We are all acclimatizing well, however two of us are trying to get over upper respiratory crud. Our spirits remain high and we are putting on weight from all the good cooking our chef Gopal turns out three times a day. Yummy!

Stay tuned for the future adventures of the Team!
Namaste,

Vern Tejas

April 2 - Khumjung: It was a good day. Clear skies in the morning, snow in the afternoon and a crisp clear evening. Everyone is now in bed and getting some rest before our move to Deboche tomorrow.

The morning started with an early trip up to the Thame Monastery and a blessing from the Rinpoche or ‘reincarnate lama’. The monastery is nestled into the hillside over looking the village of Thame and the Bhote Kosi River. On the way up the clear skies allowed us to see up the Nangpa Valley to Cho Oyu and toward the historic Nangpa La Pass which serves as the main trade route between Tibet and the Khumbu. It’s also the common route for Tibetan refugees to leave China en route to India via Nepal. The monastery is nearly 400 years old and has a fascinating prayer hall. It just recently had a nice addition constructed which was funded by the Himalayan Trust. Trekkers and climbers both visited the gompa together and then descended back to Thame.

We went to Lakpa Rita’s home for tea and a visit with his mother and mother-in-law. The two of them always bring a smile to my face. They are both mischievous and fun loving characters and gracious to bring everyone in. All 24 of us were given more katas and blessings and sent off with a belly full of tea. Tea is an essential part of any reunion, introduction, meeting, celebration, etc. Nothing is accomplished without a few cups of tea.

Eventually we made our way onward to Khumjung and parked ourselves at the Sherpa Land Lodge just across the way from the Hillary School. Chris, Alastair, Lakpa and I got into another game of hearts which Lakpa stole this time. Supertramp’s Greatest Hits provided a good sound track for the afternoon around the fire in the teahouse and we actually had a bit of spontaneous group singing… yeah, it was scary- certainly disturbing to anyone witnessing. We’ll try not to embarrass ourselves again.

In the morning we’re off again to Deboche. It’s snowing again now and time for shut eye.

We’ll be in touch soon.

Dave

Dispatch Index

 

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