Ever since I was a little kid, Mt. Everest interested me. I love the outdoors and hiking so it has been my life goal to climb Mt. Everest. I am thrilled because tomorrow I will attempt to reach my goal. All the great adventurers keep a journal so I decided to keep one about what happens. After I have accomplished my life goal of climbing the mountain, I will be able to look back and read what happened every day of my adventure. I have been training for this climb for awhile. The excitement I had when I scheduled this trip was enormous. The climb is estimated to take about 4 months and I am ready for it.
Today is day 1 of the climb. My group of about 5 climbers and 2 guides all stayed in a hotel last night. All of us a very excited but nervous. At the crack of dawn we got up and started hiking to base camp, this will take about 9 days. We have been hiking all day and i've been getting to know the other climbers. I am the type of person that worries so all I can think about is what could go wrong. I want to be able to enjoy the hike to camp but my mind is filled.
Day 2 of the climb went well. We still have 8 more days until we get to base camp and I am extremely excited. While we were hiking I got to know some the 2 guides, Mark and Josh. Mark is an experienced climber who is very full of himself, I don't like that about him but he knows what he is doing. He is about 5´8 and bulky with a mean face. Josh is also an experienced climber but he doesn't know as much as Mark. Josh is very easy to get along with and a very funny guy. He is very tall and lanky but like any good climber, he is strong. Both of them have climbed this mountain but neither of them have taken the route we will be taking. They told us not to worry because they are very prepared if anything happens. I am still nervous because they haven't climbed this route.
I skipped a few days in my journal because we are just hiking to base camp. The scenery is beautiful, you can see for miles. The snow topped mountains look astonishing and I have realized that climbing this mountain is the best decision I have ever made. Looking up at the mountain is breathtaking, I know that in about 2 months I will be on the top looking down.
I've been getting to know my fellow climbers. I met Vincent who is a Businessman from New York, he has a wife and 2 little kids. He told me that he has decided to climb the mountain to show his kids that they can do anything. Grant is my favourite climber. He is an adventure seeker and is always looking for something exciting. He doesn't like to talk about his past or his life back home. This makes me think there is another reason he is climbing other than for the adventure.
I skipped 4 days but that doesn't matter because we have reached base camp! We are staying here a few days to rest but I can't wait to get out and climb. There is a traditional ceremony held called a pooja which is supposed to bless us on our climb. I don't really know if that stuff actually works but I hope it does. I will be getting some rest here and In a few days we will be off on the climb.
Today was the day we started our climb! All of us are enthusiastic and ready to go. Mark and Josh led us out and we were off onto the new route. The mountains are amazing but freezing, I haven't been this cold before. It's okay because I am so excited that I forget how cold it is. Tonight I am sleeping at Camp 1 and we will head to Camp 2
We have spent the last few nights in Camp 2 but now we are heading off. I am feeling sick from the altitude but Mark said I should get used to it. The longer i've been with Mark I have started to not like him. I tend to hang around Josh because he is nicer. Sometimes Mark and Josh don't agree on things and then Mark always wins. I don't know if this is a good thing because Mark doesn't think things through.
I am sorry I haven't been writing, it is harsh up here and i'm getting less time to write. When I have time to write at night I am usually sleeping because of how tired I am. But the view up here is crazy, you can see for miles and miles. I am in awe of how big the mountain actually is. I feel so small and helpless, if something goes wrong I don't know how anyone will find me. I don't want to think about that right now because I am going to achieve my life goal.
Today we got a message that there is a big storm coming soon. Mark wants to get as high as we can before the storm hits so we can stay there for a few days. I have a bad feeling about it but Mark is a professional and he knows what to do. I have gotten to know the other climbers really well during this climb. Kelly and Pam are sisters who both have always wanted to climb this mountain. Jack is a climber on this trip who is a teacher from Idaho. It is fun to see how people from all over have come to climb this mountain. Grant has opened up a little more and it turns out he was part of a crime family but decided to leave. He is a genuinely nice person but I still don't trust him. Vincent is now my best friend, we both get along so well and we are very similar.
I completely forgot that I was keeping this journal because I have been focused on climbing and staying alive. I am loving it up here but it is harder to climb then I expected. Like I said, I trained a lot but I guess it wasn't enough. The big storm is supposed to hit soon so we have been climbing quickly to get as high as we can.
Today wasn't good at all, the big snowstorm hit today and we were out in the open. Josh had tried to convince Mark to let us stay back but he has adamant on going. I hate Mark for that because he put the everyone's life at risk causing us to lose Pam, Kelly, and Jack. The conditions were so bad that Jack got lost and it is too bad to go out and look for him. I hate the feeling that he could be freezing to death right now. Pam and Kelly were crossing a ledge and Pam slipped. She grabbed Kelly but the back of he coat and they both fell down. It was the most horrifying thing I have ever seen and I couldn't do anything but watch. It is just Josh, Mark, Grant, Vincent, and I left. We have decided to head back down because of the danger. I am upset that we won't make it to the top but I know it's not safe to go back.
The 5 of us headed back today but the snow is so thick that we didn't make it very far. It seems like Vincent is starting to get sick so we have been slow from that. It is pretty much white out conditions but Mark wants to push on. I know that he knows what he's doing but he is wrong. We need to rest and wait for the storm to blow past.
I am all alone. It was white out conditions and I tripped. I guess the rest of the crew didn't hear me and they kept moving on. I have dug a hole in the snow and I am planning on staying in it until the storm blows by. I have been in this freezing pit for 5 hours and 22 minutes. Counting the minutes and writing is the only thing keeping me sane. I only have about 2 days worth of food and water but if I ration it can last a week. I can't go out and move because I need to conserve my energy with the little amount of food I have.
I have calculated and figured out that the next Camp is a 2 day hike away. I have decided that tomorrow I will hike towards the direction that I am guessing the camp is. The storm hasn't gotten any better and the cold wind hurts bad. My nose is frost bitten and I can't feel my feet. Loneliness is taking over. There is no one even relatively close to me and I hate that feeling. I am going to sleep now so that I will have more energy for tomorrow.
I hiked all day today and it was a bad idea. I don't know how much longer I will be able to make it in the cold. There is this horrible feeling that these are my last few days. I don't want to die and I will try all that I can to survive. Tomorrow, if my calculations were right, I will reach a camp. I will start hiking in the morning and should reach it by night. Once I get to the camp I hope the rest of the crew is there. I am always thinking about what they are doing. Are they at a camp, are they still hiking, or did they not make it? I sure hope they made it because I don't want to have to finish this descent by myself. Side note: I have realized and accepted that with the conditions and my health, this could be my last journal entry. I started this journal so I could look back at my adventure and see how much fun it was but I won't be able to. I hope that someday someone finds this journal and will pay their respects to Jack, Pam, and Kelly. I hope it's not the rest of the crew too because I want them to survive. I need to sleep and get ready for the next day. Goodbye.
This journal was found in a backpack on April 8th, 2017. The journal has been released to the public so that the lost climber can be remembered.
Im memory of: Jack, Kelly, Pam, Grant, Vincent, Mark, Josh, and Curtis