Posts Tagged ‘wiktor’

Once Upon a Time on Everest

Tuesday, September 11th, 2012

Recently I went to my God-Daughter’s 4th birthday, and leading up to it I was thinking to myself, “What kind of a gift could I give her?” I like to give gifts that are original and last a while. I recently learned that kids that age are very interested in discovering new things, have a grand imagination, and like adventures (Dora the Explorer anyone? As one gift she got Dora shoes…). So I thought I would tell her a story about her Godfather’s adventure going up a very big mountain, a mountain much taller than the tallest building she might see in the city, with big pieces of ice the size of her house to walk around, and many other unbelievable descriptions that to any child (and some adults, myself included at times) would sound like a fairytale.

On a somewhat related topic, for a while now I have had the idea of writing a book about my Everest adventures, but aiming it for a young-adult audience. With this thought of my Goddaughter, why not try and put together a book for her age also? A kid reader that her parents could read to her, with pictures or drawings of Everest that would inspire her imagination to go wild.

So, with that in mind, I am asking if anyone out there knows something about, or knows someone in, the kids publishing area in North America. While I have had this thought of writing for a young audience for a while now, not having acted on it means I need some help. Leave a comment, drop me a line at worldpeak.ca@gmail.com, or just let me know what you think of the idea! Thanks!

Two Years Later – Everest Day by Day

Thursday, May 17th, 2012

Today is the two-year anniversary since I stood on the top of the world. What I was doing last year at about this time was posting on Twitter every day what my thoughts and emotions were while I was on the expedition. For those that found that a difficult way of following along, I thought I would post it all in one post here on my blog. Not sure if it has the same effect as seeing it day-by-day, so let me know any feedback you might have. Otherwise enjoy!

Mar 31 2010, Everest Day 0: Breakfast meeting with entire group, going over final prep and details. Nice to finally meet everyone!

31mar2010: Last item to buy in Kathmandu: big comfy foam mattress. Was kinda pricey but how much is 2 months comfort in base camp worth?

1Apr2010: Early start this morning, heading to the airport for flight to Lukla, where hiking begins. Hope it’s no April Fool’s Joke!

Made it to Lukla, got on a flight before the afternoon weather came in. Funny landing on an uphill airstrip pointing into the mountain!

1apr2010: Hiked almost 3 hours to Phakding,spending night.But our duffels are still in KTM,how long will I have to live with no fresh socks?

2apr2010: almost 6 hours going from Phakding to Namche.Still no bags! But Namche seems like a nice place, everyone talks about the bakery…

3apr2010: rest day in Namche.some people are hiking to Everest View Hotel, I’ll just rest, 3400m already!

4apr2010: Today again rested in Namche, but bags are finally here! So sleeping in tents tonight. See pic of namche http://twitpic.com/4h2r4v

Pic of Namche

6apr2010:yesterday tough day,spent 7 hours hiking from Namche to Pangboche.Though I am one of the slowest in the group,a little demoralizing

On the way to Pangboche, stopped to rest in Tengboche and visited this monastery. Unfortunately it was closed. http://twitpic.com/4hl778

Tengboche Monastery

6apr2010: woke up in Pangboche, see pic. Short day, walked 3 hours to Pheriche, 4200m! http://twitpic.com/4hta4g

View of Ama Dablam from Pangboche

7apr2010:another short day,2 hours to Dhugla.Filling time by getting to know some of the people on summitclimb’s other expeditions. #everest

8apr2010: woke up in Dhugla (see pic), short day to Lobuche.Even though short hikes, altitude is tiring, need rest http://twitpic.com/4ijunc

View from Dhugla

9apr2010: Made it to #Everest Base Camp! I am spent, I could rest for a week. 5 straight days hiking to 5300m. http://twitpic.com/4itaz5

Everest Base Camp!

10apr2010: rest day in base camp.But more importantly,on this day happened the Smolensk air disaster, killing Polish President and 95 others

Smolensk air disaster occured before a planned commemoration of the massacre of 22000 Polish intellectuals/officials by Russians in WW2.

Being isolated at EverestBaseCamp, I wouldn’t know of this for days. Results of crash are still disputed. http://bit.ly/eWQq8R#smolensk

11apr2010: Base Camp. I feel like shit. Last night my stomach started acting up, I could barely drink water during dinner, let alone eat.

11apr2010:this morning I skipped breakfast.People tell me I lost 10 pounds overnight.Not surprising,not being able to drink or eat this high

11apr2010: Missing one meal is bad. At this altitude, missing two is serious trouble. I wanna go home…

11apr2010: stopped feeling sorry for myself, took some stomach antibiotics, and got lunch down… Let’s hope it keep getting better!

12apr2010: Still sick,but others want to acclimatize;not wanting to be left behind I join them.Pic from Pumori ABC http://twitpic.com/4k5qan

View from Pumori ABC

13apr2010: 7 hour hike yesterday, good to have a rest today. It snowed overnight, here’s how BC looks all white: http://twitpic.com/4kjk00

Base Camp after a snow fall

14apr2010: Rest Day in #everest Base Camp. Highlights: Breakfast, Laundry, Lunch, Dinner.

15apr2010: Training how to walk on ladders and rappel down ropes, in preparation for Khumbu Ice Fall ahead http://twitpic.com/4lauha

Training walking on ladders

16apr2010: First hike through the Khumbu Ice Fall. Falling seracs, most I’ve ever been scared in my life. http://bit.ly/fS1xRH

17apr2010: Rest day. Everest Quote: MV:”13 Hours in the Ice Fall.” Me:”How much water did you have to drink?” MV:”Two Sprites [cans]!”

18apr2010: sad day in Base Camp. Two members took a chopper to Kathmandu, going home. It’s too quiet now…

19apr2010: a few of us head to camp 1 to stash some gear and continue acclimatizing by sleeping there.Quicker through the ice fall this time

20apr2010: Woke up in Camp 1(see pic),not feeling good but happy to go down.First night sleeping high always tough http://twitpic.com/4ng6zc

Camp 1

21apr2010: Rest day in #Everest BC. Someone mentioned something about an oil spill in the GOM. I guess another ship crashed or something…

22apr2010: Rest Day. #Everest Quote: “I’m only happy when I’m complaining.”

23apr2010: Base Camp to Camp 1, 7 hours. Then, as if the day was not hard enough, 3.5 hours moving to Camp 2, carrying a big load.

24apr2010: rest day in C2, 6400m. Some went to explore the camp/area, I was too tired from carrying my load. Night was not fun either.

25apr2010: return to BC,had to go through the Ice Fall again (pic).Good to be “home”,BC seems great in comparison! http://twitpic.com/4pmeca

Khumbu Ice Fall

26apr2010: Rest day in BC.Getting a little boring here and there.See the attached pic,view of BC from the ice fall http://twitpic.com/4pzutm

Everest Base Camp as seen from Khumbu Ice Fall

27apr2010: Semi Rest day. Walk one hour each way to nearest town, Gorak Shep, for lunch (MEAT! Yak Steak!) and some internet access.

28apr2010: Rest day,day 2 of playing cards.Playing at altitude a card game that requires thinking is ‘interesting’ http://twitpic.com/4qs1x0

Looking at Khumbu Ice Fall

29apr2010:Rest day in BC.Discussions about summit push possibilities.It’s on everyones mind and lips.But one more acclimatization push first

30apr2010: Leaving early to Camp 2, hoping to sleep in C3 and make it our last acclimatization. 3 of us go today, rest will follow tomorrow.

1may2010: While we wait for other 3 to join us,take a rest day in C2.Quote: “I didn’t bring a book to C2,can you read yours out loud to me?”

2may2010:Planned to go to C3 but weather was bad,no go.Forecast says it will stay bad for days,some peeps went down.I almost went too but…

2may2010: … but when was the mountain forecast ever accurate? They’re wrong as often as they are right. Let’s wait one day and see!

3may2010: Good weather in C2,we should go to C3, but only Sherpas go, to check if no ‘snow hazard’ exists. I say if they go we should go >:(

4may2010:finally we can go up to C3.But wait,nobody else wants to sleep there,just touch it?No way,I want my acclimatization,I’ll stay alone

4may2010: in C3,all alone,7000m,no oxygen.My radio can receive but not send.I can hear them calling me from C2 [, worried I’m not responding].This is gonna be a long night

5may2010:C3,what a night,cold and some hallucinating dreams.Nature calls,might be interesting on a 45 deg slope,holding to rope for security

5may2010: Back in C2 safely, should be a relaxing rest of day. Ice fall tomorrow. Wait, sherpas want us all to go down to BC now? Why?

5may2010: Snow storm, so best get to BC today. Good idea. Except now we’re stuck in a white out, crevasses around, no rope. Bad situation…

6may2010: Everyone else goes to Pheriche (4200m) to build energy for summit push.I need a rest in BC (5300m).Highlights:Laundry and shaving.

7may2010: I go down to Pheriche to join the others. Doesn’t feel right to go backwards when I’ve already been so close. 4600m away from top.

Back in 2010 Mother’s day was on May 9th, so I called my mom from my Everest expedition. #HappyMothersDay to all Moms! Go call your Mom!

11may2011: long day,gaining 1100m back to BC.Plan is,we’re trying for weather window May 16th.Let’s hope its real, I don’t want to try twice

12may2010: rest day in BC.Weather window for 16th not looking that good with new forecast, but still doable.So we’re still leaving tomorrow.

13may2010: 7 hours from BC to C2. 5 of us trying to summit on this push.Weather is not great,but hopefully it will be in a few days! On Top!

14may2010: going from C2 to C3. Got blood gushing when I clean my nose or spit, hope that’s not coming from my lungs… #everest 2010

15may2010: what a bad night at C3,I maybe slept 1 hour.Windy,uncomfy (3 people per tent).Now I’m the last of our group to leave, alone to C4

15may2010: on the ‘yellow band’, as I go up some sherpas lower a body. Sobering thought. I am also getting sun burned. How bad can it be?

15may2010 19:00: arrive C4 after 10 hours, now I have 2 hours to rest before, literally, climbing mount everest? You gotta be shitting me…

16may2010: weather window never happened yesterday, windy all night. I feel stronger today but what’s the point if weather stays bad?

16may2010: one eternal debate among mountaineers: when going poo at 8000m and -25C, do you wear gloves when you wipe or risk frost bite? :-)

16may2010 9pm: wow,the wind stopped and people are going for the summit.I’m surprised!Let’s go,but they say higher the weather is unpassable

17may2010: #everest summit! I didn’t expect that. Only problem: now I have to walk all the way back down! Huge inconvenience!

17may2010:10 hours from summit to C2,I broke down mentally.That wasn’t worth it.And I was alone,sherpa left me.Words can’t describe tirednes

17may2010: What did I do at the summit exactly one year ago? I wrote a blog post about it, see here: http://bit.ly/mzxIJW

18may2010: woke up in C2, not sure if the tears all night were real or a dream. Now my vision is foggy, my face is swollen. Snow blindness.

18may2010: shoved some contacts in my swollen eyes and headed (for the last time) through the ice fall to BC. Left alone, sherpas caught up.

18may2010: any uphill portion in the ice fall was soo hard! But now in BC, I’m home safe! No more danger, going home! Woohoo! #everest

19may2010: rest in BC, packing to leave the next day. Giving away remainder of my food and some equipment to sherpas and remaining clients.

20may2010: heading down home! Stopping at kala pathar on the way, nice view but sure is windy! Sleeping in pheriche.

21may2010: long day,pheriche to namche.So hungry after weeks of losing weight,I want to eat!But have to ration remaining cash, no ATMs here.

22may2010: Last long 6h walk,Namche to Lukla.First time near motorized transport in 2 months!Let’s hope the weather is good to fly tomorrow.

23may2010:Fly to Kathmandu!After paying for extra luggage,I am left with 5 rupees(7 cents).rationing money not easy when hungry post everest

23may2010: in Kathmandu, cashless, just climbed #everest and hungry beyond words, went to an ATM to get money and it ate my card. #FML

24may2010: That’s the end of my #everest adventure lookback, hope you enjoyed it! Keep an eye on blog.mazurw.com for more of my writing.

Having read through that myself, I think it definitely paints a nice picture of how things went down! It’s funny how much can be passed along in 140 characters (or less) per day!

After Everest, come hear about my trip!

Monday, November 22nd, 2010

Since coming back from Mount Everest, I have managed to keep quite busy with life and haven’t written anything for a while. I have given a few slide shows to friends and family, and passed along some of the stories, but I’m now doing one as an open event! I will be doing a talk and showing pictures from my trip this Thursday, I encourage everyone to come out! But this event is not just about me, it’s a little different than the other presentations I’ve done; this event is organized along with World Vision, there will be printed pictures from my trip, and it will all be tied in to the larger picture of my fund raising efforts and World Vision as a whole. So even if you have seen my pictures before, you haven’t seen it like this!

If you’re at all interested in my Everest adventure, or in my fundraising campaign, come on out! The official invite can be seen here, or read on:

You’re invited to an inspirational photo exhibit. This one day, open house features photos by Wiktor Mazur, a local World Vision Child Sponsor, who climbed Mount Everest.

Thursday, November 25, 2010
Open House from 6:00 – 9:30 pm, with Wiktor sharing his story at 6:30, 7:30 and 8:30
Health Sciences Centre, by Foothills Hospital
Theatre 3 (2nd floor, elevator available upon request)
3330 Hospital Drive NW
Calgary AB T2N 4N1

Back from his climb, Wiktor wants to share with you – through photos and stories – the challenges he endured and the triumphs he celebrated. Inspired by the children who live each day in poverty, Wiktor took on the grueling journey of climbing to the world’s peak, Mt. Everest; hoping to help these children enjoy life to its fullest.

Come see what he saw from the top of the world – see his photos and hear his story about climbing Mt. Everest.

SPECIAL FEATURE for Calgary: Seeing life through the lens of a child is a powerful experience.
Using a photography workshop, sponsored children, in Bangladesh and Zambia, learned basic composition and photography techniques. Then they took the cameras into their world – offering a rare photographic insight into the lives of sponsored children. They captured images of things they want to change and things they are proud of. The result is a celebration of their vision and their enthusiasm.

The children were also asked to photograph what they want to share with the world. Now you are invited to share in that experience with them – and see how the children look at their world.

Visit www.worldvision.ca/Events for more information (including map and parking information).

Suffering and Hope

Sunday, May 30th, 2010

For those who may not have been reading my blog too much, I often talk about how much suffering is involved in mountain climbing. What we have to put our minds and bodies through in high altitude mountaineering is not easy; you can’t quite train away the suffering that will have to be endured while acclimatizing on the mountain. It is the main reason I did this climb for charity, it was my way of putting myself into the suffering of those most needy in the world. On that note, there is a quote I heard just today that might put that suffering into a bit of perspective, for why people do it:

“We also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us.”

Maybe if you’re ever going through some tough times yourself (climbing your own internal Everest) keep the above in mind.

Below, a couple more pictures from the summit, holding flags of the Knights of Columbus. My fellow Knights supported me on this climb both in moral support and donations, so much thanks to them all!

KofC Summit

KofC Summit

Go read Into Thin Air

Friday, February 12th, 2010

Into Thin AirFor the last little while I have been reading the book “Into Thin Air” by Jon Krakauer, and I suggest you have a read of it. If you want to read about a real-life adventure, or if you want to learn more about climbing in general and high altitude in particular, or some of the history of Mt. Everest, you will find it all there. It’s a good book for everyone, as it assumes you know very little about the world of mountains and climbing them. Many people I have spoken with that have very little interest in mountains and climbing really enjoyed the book; it gives a very good description of what it’s like to climb in these high mountains, things I explain to people when I show them my photos and share my experiences. So if you have a read of this book you will know at least some of what I’m going through when I am on my trip this spring.

I thought it was a very good book, well written and a well told story. It’s not quite as epic as “Touching the Void” by Joe Simpson (read that one after if you want, it’s one of my favourite books ever), but good nonetheless. However, read “Into Thin Air” with a grain of salt, as there is some controversy over some of the things in that book, mainly the author’s guesses at people’s motivations for their actions. An entire book was written to tell the tale of that disaster from another point of view and question some of what Jon wrote, so just keep that in mind.

Let me know if you want to borrow my copy of the book. I will share some quotes to get you interested:

But at times I wondered if I had not come a long way only to find that what I really sought was something I had left behind.
– Quote taken from Hornbein, “Everest, The West Ridge”

Everest has always been a magnet for kooks, publicity seekers, hopeless romantics, and others with a shaky hold on reality.

The fact that a climber has paid a large sum of money to join a guided expedition does not, by itself, mean that he or she is unfit to be on the mountain.

People who don’t climb mountains – the great majority of humankind, that is to say – tend to assume that the sport is a reckless, Dionysian pursuit of ever escalating thrills. … At least in the case of Everest … the ratio of misery to pleasure was greater by an order of magnitude than any other mountain I’d been on; I quickly came to understand that climbing Everest was primarily about enduring pain. And in subjecting ourselves to week after week of toil, tedium, and suffering, it struck me that most of us were probably seeking, above all else, something like a state of grace.

“If client cannot climb Everest without big help from guide,” Boukreev told me, “this client should not be on Everest. Otherwise there can be big problems up high.”

Mountaineering tends to draw men and women not easily deflected from their goals. By this late stage in the expedition we had all been subjected to levels of misery and peril that would have sent more balanced individuals packing for home long ago. To get this far one had to have an uncommonly obdurate personality.
Unfortunately, the sort of individual who is programmed to ignore personal distress and keep pushing for the top is frequently programmed to disregards signs of grave and imminent danger as well.

Bottled oxygen does not make the top of Everest feel like sea level. … 29,000 feet with gas felt like approximately 26,000 feet without gas.

Not only during the ascent but also during the descent my willpower is dulled. The longer I climb the less important the goal seems to me, the more indifferent I become to myself. My attention has diminished, my memory is weakened. My mental fatigue is now greater than the bodily. It is so pleasant to sit doing nothing – and therefore so dangerous. Death through exhaustion is – like death through freezing – a pleasant one.
– Quote taken from Reinhold Messner, “The Crystal Horizon”

50 Days to Everest

Thursday, February 4th, 2010

In 50 days I will be on a flight leaving Calgary in what you can call the official start of my trip up Everest. I have just a few loose ends to tie up but most things are starting to fall into place. I have sent in my final payment for the trip; if you check the summitclimb.com website you will see that the cost of climbing Everest from Nepal is $27,750 USD (and prices are going up next year). I have also paid for 5 oxygen bottles valued at $510 each (they are cheaper if you buy them in Kathmandu, but that $510 includes transport by Yak then porters then Sherpas up the mountain to the high camps where we’ll actually need the stuff). I’ll leave you guys to add that all up.

summitclimb

With all that money spent I thought I would take some time to reflect on my trip in the context of ‘commercial expeditions up Everest’. There are other expeditions that charge $65,000 or more for a similar experience, where does that difference come from? Well one big difference is that our trip with summitclimb is not considered a “guided” trip; there is a team leader but there are no guides that will be walking with us up the mountain. We are expected to know enough about mountaineering to make our own way up and down the mountain. That cost to pay IFMGA Certified guides a western salary and all their expenses adds up. Also, we have to carry a bit more of our own things. Some companies will place sleeping bags in the high camp tents, so people can arrive and have everything ready for sleeping; I will have to carry my own (surprisingly heavy) sleeping bag. Little things like that requires people employed to carry things up and down the mountain, which adds up quickly. There are other minor things too that add up.

I must say that from my experience it’s better to go on a non-guided trip such as this. It means the quality of people signing up is higher, and you’re expected to do more on your own, giving a better feeling of satisfaction at the end. Of course, there is a fine line before the support the group gives is not enough. Other companies charge even less, but give you even less. It may go unnoticed if everything goes according to plan, but if something goes wrong these groups seek help from the ones more prepared (because they are more financed). I think summitclimb finds a nice balance right where it should be in terms of support.

I guess the whole concept of the commercialization of Everest is a debatable one, but I would like to think that companies offering non-guided support are the ones doing it right, as long as they screen their applicants enough to make sure people are qualified to be on the mountain. Companies that rely on their guides to help people up the mountain are introducing people into circumstances where they cannot help themselves, and that’s where trouble can begin, for them and for everyone else on the mountain stuck because of a traffic jam or asked to help someone who should not be there.

Here’s to hoping that our group goes up and down the mountain with little fanfare or media attention, as that always follows people that get into trouble.

I hate to complain but…

Monday, February 1st, 2010

So my last post was just one big complaint. I realized that as I was writing it, and hesitated about 5 times before actually hitting ‘publish’. I hate complaining. I rarely complain. I always look for the silver lining on the cloud, for how I can make the best of any situation. And I think it takes a bit of that to be able to climb high altitudes, to be able to enjoy the fresh air and the beautiful views and the relaxed people, rather than focus on the shortness of breath and the monochromatic rock-snow landscape and the lack of luxuries. However, in the interest of sharing as much as I can about what I go through as I prepare for and attempt Everest, I feel it’s best to share those bad moments and bad thoughts as much as the good. It would be a little too easy just to publish the good.

To those ladies that I have explained what high altitude mountaineering is about, several have drawn similarities between it and childbirth: you go through a lot of pain and during that pain you swear you will never do it again, but once you’re done and you look back at the result of all that pain, you barely remember the pain, in fact you start planning the next one. So it’s easy for me to just wait a few days after I go through some tough moments and forget about them, but in my attempt to share what it’s like to prepare for and attempt Everest I will try and capture all those negatives as well as positives. So please, when I complain, now or in the future, take it all with a grain of salt, appreciate it for what it is, and know I’ll get over it.

Concerning my last post, I have already decided that I’m going to focus less on the weight lifting side, start doing more body weight exercises to keep the muscle I’ve built; also I’ll start walking with weight on my back to get the muscles I’ve built used to working the way I’ll need to use them on the mountain. So I already have a bit of a solution in mind.

Hopefully I’ll post some more updates soon on my other preparation activities. All the best!

It’s starting to get to me…

Saturday, January 30th, 2010

The training I have been doing to get myself into shape for Everest is starting to weigh on me. Not sure exactly why but I am really starting to not like it. When I go to the gym I am tired of feeling pain and burn from the weights, and as I keep upping the weights that burn is not going away. I find I need to take longer breaks between sets, and mentally I’m just not into it as much. I’ll keep going for a while still, though I doubt I’ll reach my weight goal I specified in an earlier post; but no matter, that was just an arbitrary number anyways. Regardless I am glad I’m getting stronger and I can quite confidently say I am in the best shape of my life. And I definitely have an appreciation for those guys at the gym that are totally bulked up, not so much for what they achieve but for the dedication and discipline it takes to achieve it. Though I wonder if I could get as big with my current schedule if I was on steroids? Just a thought, not something I’ll ever find out.

Anyways, this mental challenge in my training I should take gladly, because it’s exactly these kinds of feelings that I will have on Everest. It will be a case of my body not wanting to do what I must convince my mind to do. However, two months of that on Everest will be more than enough and if I have to put up with it starting now I wonder how I’ll fare once on the mountain.

Calgarian to mount Everest for charity

Wednesday, January 27th, 2010

Hi all, I’ve been meaning to update on some of the goings on of my preparation for Everest, unfortunately those very preparations have kept me busy enough that I find little time to compose my many thoughts and feelings as I prepare and go forward. I will take this opportunity to share that my endeavor has got it’s first media exposure, the Calgary Sun has an article online about my climb, and you can look for it in tomorrow’s paper. Check the link here:

http://www.calgarysun.com/news/alberta/2010/01/26/12620871.html

“The toughest thing is preparing to do things your body doesn’t want to do — it’s more of a mental challenge than physical one, if you’re physically prepared,” he said.

I wanted to also give an extra special thanks to the many people that have already donated to World Vision in support of my endeavor, thank you very much!

UPDATE: Just checked the print version, the article is at the top of page 17 with a nice big headline. Thanks Bill Kaufmann!

It Starts…

Tuesday, January 5th, 2010

Happy New Year everyone! Now that it’s 2010 and I’m deep into my preparations to climb Mt. Everest I thought I’d share some of them.

I am now training what I consider to be full time. I am lifting weights at least three times a week, swimming at least once a week (for an hour), and trying to get out into the mountains for ‘real-world’ exercise on the weekends. I’m learning about training techniques and strategies, and I am learning a lot about fitness nutrition. There is a lot to it, and there’s a lot of information out there to digest, but I am enjoying it! I enjoy learning new things and I am getting an appreciation for how professional athletes train, how diligently they have to eat, etc. There’s some really cool people who are helping me out which should make it a little easier.

I guess just to summarize what I am doing: when at high altitude I will lose weight, a lot of it being muscle, so with my build I need to build muscle to be better prepared for when I start losing it on the mountain. Maybe I could get away with what I have, but I am taking this trip a little seriously and I want every advantage I can get. My goal is to get to 200 pounds (91 kg), where the most I have ever really weighed is 185 pounds (83 kg). While gaining weight can be easy, gaining muscle is not!

I was looking into satellite phones to try and see if I can get one to stay in touch with people while on the mountain, when I remembered someone saying that Everest Base Camp has cell coverage. So I looked into it further and it seems that Nepal Telecom wants to expand that to give the entire south side of the mountain cell coverage! Click here to see the story. Anyways, I’m hoping that system is working and hopefully I’ll be able to keep in touch with a normal cell phone! How times have changes since Hillary, no?

Another little bit of preparation I did today: I sold some stock in AMD that I had bought previously, I’m starting to get the money together that I need to fund my trip. It was a stock that did not too bad between when I bought it back in November 08 and now.

That’s it for now, take care and make the most of 2010!