May 1 Dzongla to Loubuche Base Camp

 
A report from Lottie: A relatively easy short walk today, but the traumas of the Chola Pass had got to me and I was right out of "man-up juice" (thanks Jane for that phrase!) I really felt that if anything was going to be harder than yesterday then I just couldn't even attempt any of the big peaks ahead of us.  [keep reading...]
I was pretty tearful, but was exacerbated by Brad leaving, he was always going to leave the trek early, but had decided that after the Chola pass Lobuche East (our next peak) would be too much and would prefer to take a more gentle trek home via Everest Base Camp. I'm rubbish at saying goodbye at the best of times, but even sadder than Brad going was lovely Karma my favourite porter was going with him, I will so miss his lovely smiley face and will always be amazed by his strength as at the age of 16 he carried close on 100lbs over the mountains. We arrived at our tented camp, and shortly after Brad and Karma left - more tears!
 
Today was also going to be my first time camping in nearly 30 years, but first we had lunch in our "dining tent" I cannot describe how amazing that lunch tasted - can you believe the most delicious thing in the world at that point was tinned pilchards, tinned vegetables and a piece of cheese. Then even more miraculous we had fruit salad for pudding, this has been one of the meals I have been fantasizing about! It may have been fruit cocktail, out of a tin but it was bloody delicious and we all felt revived. We then spent the afternoon practicing climbing up and abseiling down ropes all with our mountain boots on. Doug and I both have no mountaineering experience, so the harnesses, jumars (for going up) and figure of eights (for abseiling down) meant nothing to us before this before this point but will no doubt save our lives!