20-21 June – China (Tibet) – ~303 miles
The last two days have just been leading up to, and then visiting, Mount Everest. And, wow. In every respect, just absolutely amazing.
Firstly – yesterday – just some riding to get to Dingri, our base for visiting Qomolangma. And while I’m sure there was some interesting stuff yesterday, I’ve forgotten it all after today’s experience…
Riding – wow. Just, awesome. I’m not exactly experienced, but a lot of the guys here are saying that compared to Stelvio Pass (apparently one of the best) – this was many-many times better.
All I know is – I loved it. And, for the first time ever, dragged a foot-peg on the road… on knobbly tires. I’ll upload a screenshot of the map for the road once I get the chance.
Somebody quoted “200 hairpin turns”… I genuinely don’t know if that was an exaggeration.
The Mountain. Well… I made a little bit of fun about Mt Kailash giving people spiritual feelings and what-not. And Everest – yeah, just another big rock with some snow on it. But goddamn if I didn’t feel goosebumps, shivers, a wee bit of a glow, and a couple of eyeball-leaks on the first sight of it. And, many times subsequently.
What a magnificent big bastard.
I wasn’t the only one suffering from the dust of the road when we stopped at the first decent viewpoint. And when we finally got to Base Camp (tourist Base Camp, not proper Climbers’ Base Camp, and… via bloody electric bus for the last 8 miles, because apparently in this very small area China does give a shit about the environment.. despite many bribe attempts and pleas to let us just ride that last 8 miles)… I spent about an hour more than everybody else just sitting there, looking at this goddamn mountain, towering over us when we’re already sitting at 5,200 metres. I also read some of my book, and made a tower of rocks.
While the remaining Scotsman wore his kilt, I wore the traditional New Zealand black-woollen-singlet, Red-Bands (in jandal-form), and a hat that in hindsight could pass for Fred Daggs’.
And, had my first attempt at a “live facebook video” – with zero preparation/practice/or-even-forethought – just spur of the moment “let’s see if this works”, and some random mumbling – don’t know if I even did it right or got the Magnificent Big Bastard in shot at any point-in-time.
In short – Just… wow.