Day 5: Locked in the lodge

In Travel by LauraLeave a Comment

The land we’re hiking through is vast and ever-changing. We started in trees. Along water. Up rocky paths. Along cliffs. Through sand. And, today, as we crossed the tree line into barren rocky highlands.

All the while, snow-capped peaks watch over us.

Today is proving to be the hardest yet. We climbed to 13,817 feet – dropping to 57% oxygen. I’m struggling to catch my breath. Not alone there – the others in the sunroom are saying the same.

I feel it in my muscles. After climbing today, my arms felt like they were losing circulation. Toward the end, my muscles felt tired and fatigued.

My mind is alert and focused. I can power through – but listening to my body requires me to avoid being over-ambitious.

I’m recouping by moving slowly, quietly resting in the sun and sucking down some sugary teas.

The sun feels divine. it’s hot on my already toasted face – a welcomed change from the cool breezes we faced this afternoon.

Tonight will be cold. We’ve crossed above the tree line and will spend the next few days making the final ascents into base camp. I’m excited. Despite feeling completely worn out by today, I’ve been so proud of my body and what it has accomplished.

I’ve sought a bit of peace today. The group is fun but quiet is nice. They’re mostly doctors and lawyers. A sales guy. A writer. They’re loads of fun but some get whiny, entitled, rude and disrespectful. If I have to hear another whisper about the luxuries of home, I might scream.

This has been such an amazing experience otherwise. I came so prepared. I planned and planned. I’m listening to my body. Today is the first day I’m concerned for my own health. It doesn’t seem fair that the ones complaining could go to the top while I might not.

I miss Aaron.

Not being able to talk with him has been hard. Especially when he would be a voice of reason and reassurance. He’d ask me how my boots are feeling. Fine, no problems. No pain points. He’d ask me if my socks stayed dry. Today, not so much. I hung them with baby powder. He’d ask about the sleeping bag. It’s absolutely perfect.

Everyone has been mentioning the night temps. They’ve been cold. I’ve actually been sleeping half outside of my bag and liner – it’s so hot. I absolutely love it. Tons.

I feel like I’m already forgetting the most epic bits of this story. Like – Boyce actually tried to poison me the other day. He dropped an iodine tablet into my water, but it wasn’t actually iodine. Thankfully, I only brushed my teeth with it. But seriously, that could have gone horribly.

Then, tonight, Linda locked me in our room. It was pretty hilarious actually. I was changing clothes when she left. After wiping down with baby wipes, I tried to leave for dinner. I was trapped. I beat on the door and shouted. Then, noticed a guy outside my window doing laundry.

I asked him to come rescue me and – laughing – he did. The things you can’t plan for.

I’m so very excited for the next few days. And in a strange addition, I can’t wait for the next few weeks or even years.

I have so much to be proud of and happy about. And this entire experience only highlights that. It’ll be an incredible life – any which way it goes.