In December 2014 the Peterhouse Exploration Club went on the adventure of a lifetime. They hiked in the Himalayas reaching Everest Base Camp and summiting Kala Pattah at 5,600 metres above sea level. A short film about their experience was created by film maker Jill Roberts and screened last month at Hartmann House School. Using video and stills, it showed the people back home what the journey was like. Proceeds from the event were donated to the families of victims who died in the two earthquakes that recently struck Nepal with devastating consequences. The students and teachers extended their thanks to their sponsors, including IHI/Bupa and Net Logistics, as well as their local guides in Nepal from Real Himalaya.
Here are two accounts from students who went on the incredible journey.
This trip to Everest Base Camp showed me that there is so much more to life than we know of, and that there are so many more opportunities out there, we just have to stretch our boundaries and go out there and take on the challenge. It showed me that even what I think may be impossible is possible as long as I push through the pain. It also showed me that I am much stronger than I ever thought I was, and if I set my mind on something, I will achieve it. This is what I hope will drive me and motivate me to get to the top of the world one day.
The aspect that struck me the most about our trek was the spiritual atmosphere created by the Buddhists. I have never met people so devoted to bettering themselves and living such wholesome lives with an incredible commitment to their religion. They go far further out of their way to help and love anybody and everybody that crosses their paths. I hope I too can one day master the art of following these paths.
The trail I’d marked on our map grew ever closer to the dot named “Mt Everest Base Camp” (EBC) as the days of our trip progressed. The place in my mind that seemed so far away was looking more and more reachable. As the days came and went, the drawing of my line became more and more satisfying. Seeing the thick black line over the thin red trail proved that even though it was getting harder and harder I still had the persistence to keep going. Since Day One it had been a struggle both physically and mentally for me. I was fit and used to exercise but not for such long hours during the day. But, with the help of some very close friends, the miles went by and EBC became a reality not just a dream. The day before we arrived at Base Camp was the day we summited Kalapatthar (5,635m) and the day I was definitely closest to giving up. But, not wanting to be the ‘runt’ of the group who was too weak or didn’t try, I started up the mountain at the tail of the group. I got up that mountain because of two things – the peer pressure to not be the weak link and the continuous encouragement from Mrs Shoesmith to keep going when the only thing I wanted to do was sit down and cry. Being able to say I conquered my own mind has taught me that no matter how much physical pain and mental turmoil you’re sinking under, you will float if you tell yourself to. I’ve carried this “exposé” with me since then.