At GO Outdoors, we love to hear about the adventures you’re planning when you pop into our stores for your gear. We love the outdoors as well, and our store and head office staff are often out on their own adventures to tackle the great outdoors.
In this blog we hear from Tim of our Colchester store as he prepares for a month long trip to Nepal to take on Everest basecamp.
Here is Tim’s story:
“As an employee of GO Outdoors, I have always been interested in getting outside, undertaking physical challenges and broadening my experiences. So, when I was offered the chance to travel to Nepal for a month and trek through the Himalayas to the south base camp of Mount Everest, I jumped at the chance.
My team is made up of 6 Air Cadets who have all completed the Arduous, 9 month long Junior Leaders Course to become Qualified Junior Leaders, or QJLs. Our team leader is a Royal Air Force Sergeant who has completed the trek once before already.
Each of us has been given a bursary to undertake this challenge by the John Thornton Young Achievers Foundation (www.jtyaf.org). The charity works in the name of former Royal Marine’s Lieutenant John Thornton who was tragically killed in Afghanistan in 2008 and it provides bursaries to young people to achieve above and beyond what they can achieve in mainstream life. Lt Thornton was a former QJL and so his parents, who founded the charity, have a very close link with the course and every year are very generous with the bursaries they provide the course graduates in return for fundraising.
The team will be departing on Monday the 3rd of November and returning to the UK on Friday the 5th of December. During our time away we will be trekking for roughly 3 weeks to Everest Base camp, starting our trek at Kathmandu, in the same way that Hillary and Norgay did some 61 years ago now, when they first reached the summit of Everest.
Everest Base Camp sits at an altitude of 5364 metres above sea level, or in feet, 17,598. But, our journey does not stop here. Weather permitting; the team will ascend further to Kala Pattar, a ridge which sits at 5545 metres, or 18,192 feet, offering spectacular views of Everest itself and the surrounding Himalayas.
The team and I would really appreciate it if you could ‘Like’ our Facebook page at: www.facebook.com/jtyafebc . Alternatively, you can follow our Blog or Twitter page at: www.nepalexped.simplesite.com and www.twitter.com/JTYAF_BC_Trek . All of these sources will be updated regularly as we ascend through our trip and we will be offering reviews of equipment that we are all using and places that we have been.
As someone that works for GO Outdoors, I am incredibly fortunate to be able to work with so much specialist equipment day in day out. However, this doesn’t mean that my choices in what kit to buy were easy! Although September through to the end of November offers the best weather to trek in the region, it is also Autumn in Nepal…where at night, temperatures can drop as low as -20°C! This is particularly prevalent because the sun can set very early in the afternoon in the region.
However, the colder temperatures don’t just mean doom and gloom. It gives me an excellent opportunity to try and test some new kit from in store! I am mostly looking forward to trying out my new Rab Neutrino Endurance Jacket and Rab Ascent 900 sleeping bag. Both of which feature Rab’s new Hydrophobic Down which is treated with Nik Wax meaning that it is able to retain much more of its warmth even when wet.
I am also really excited to try and test my new Osprey Rucksacks. From experience, I know the importance of a good fitting, well put-together rucksack and what a difference it can make to your trip. This is why I chose the Talon 33L for my daysack and the Aether 70L as my main rucksack to carry all of the kit I won’t need whilst actually walking each day.
I hope you have found this interesting to read and I hope that you are able to follow our trek online. Please, feel free to get in touch if you have questions about the trip.