By STEPHEN REGENOLD
From my table in the dining room at Highland Sherpa Resort, our lodge tonight along the trail, the pyramid of Ama Dablam juts into the sky. Further, behind a dark ridgeline, Mount Everest’s summit is partly obscured by a cloud. These peaks tower over Pangboche, a Sherpa village along the Mount Everest trail. Earlier today, our group trekked a few miles and gained a couple thousand feet of elevation. The route went from the village of Namche Bazaar, past monasteries and stupas (religious monuments), across rivers on swinging bridges, up a steep climb, through Tengboche, and, finally, to Pangboche at 3,930 meters or nearly 13,000 feet above sea level.
Here we met up with Jamie Clarke, lead climber on Expedition Hanesbrands, and his wife and two kids, who are traveling with him on the initial leg of the trip. We had dinner and tea and discussed the plan ahead. Jamie’s kids roamed the dining room, playing and voluntarily helping the kitchen staff. Later, Jamie’s wife, Barbara, assessed my blood-oxygen level, pulse rate, and other signs with a handheld machine to check my body’s adaptation to the altitude. (Good so far!)
Tomorrow is an acclimatization day here in Pangboche. We will rest, organize gear for Base Camp, and work to get our remote Internet and radio communications systems checked and fired up. Here are a few photos from the trail today, another epic leg on the trek to Mount Everest.
—Stephen Regenold will blog live from the Everest Trail this week and through the month of April. Monitor Expedition Hanesbrands’ progress at ClimbWithUs.com and on Gear Junkie at the site’s Everest Blog, http://gearjunkie.com/everest-blog.