These are terrifyingly big mountains. I feel like they are going to eat me up and swallow me alive. These are twice the size of any mountain I'm used to. When you first land in Lukla and begin your trek the path is so clearly marked it's just short of a road. But there are no roads in these mountains. There are no cars. Making these mountains vastly different from any other sort of hike I've ever experienced. The higher and further you go, the more isolated you get. The more you can only rely - entirely on yourself.
We are surrounded by yaks, massive trekking groups, and... mountains. Day two of our trek up to Base Camp was strenuous. It was our first day starting off having slept in a real tea house the night before. Our adrenaline has been raging. How amazing is this? We are in the Himalayans trekking to the freaking base camp of Mount Everest... guide-less!!!!! We LOVE it. There is nothing more exhilarating than hiking through massive mountains, beautiful landscapes, getting lost, and figuring it out on your own.
We were told... by nearly everyone... it would be so difficult to make this trek without a guide. We were told we wouldn't be able to find accommodation. Night one: done son.
Night one: I woke up with my first ever experience of a reaction to the altitude. I woke up gasping for air. A feeling completely foreign to me. But a very real realization of the extremity of what we were doing. The higher we go, the harder it gets. The further we get away from assistance. We are relying entirely on our bodies to acclimatize properly. Entirely on ourselves to map our route correctly. With no escape route, but to finish or make it back down by foot.
Our trek up to Namche Bazaar was tough. We are coming into day two, arriving from nearly sea level, sleeping at 8,000 feet night one, climbing to nearly 12,000 for night two. We felt it. But... our adrenaline was raging. And I pushed hard.