Find out how our team got on taking on Everest Base Camp
After months of mud, sweat and tears preparing for Prevent Breast Cancer’s toughest challenge, we’re thrilled to say that our team of intrepid explorers made it to Everest Base Camp, raising an incredible £120.777.26 in the process!
It wasn’t always plain sailing for our team as they battled altitude sickness, below freezing temperatures and less-than-luxurious accommodation, but reaching Base Camp, 5,364m up the mountain and adorned with rainbow prayer flags, made it all worthwhile.
After kicking off the trek with a flight from Kathmandu to Lukla – notorious for being the world’s most dangerous airport – the team had barely enough time to catch up on sleep before starting their ascent. On day four, the team trekked into the Khumbu region, famous for its incredible views and for being home of the Sherpas. After entering Sagarmatha National Park, the track started to rise up the Namche hill, making it the first big ascent of the challenge!
The pace slowed ever-so-slightly on day five, giving the team the chance to acclimatise to the altitude and get their bearings in Namche Bazaar – plus, they got their first view of Everest! They resumed their climb the next day, heading up the side of the Dudh Kosi river and taking a steep route out of Namche – but were rewarded by even more incredible views of the mountain.
Day seven was marked by a stunning walk through rhododendron trees to Pangboche, before a tougher day eight, which was unfortunately more notable for altitude sickness and exhaustion as the team hit the 4,730m mark. On day nine, our trekkers climbed up the incredible Khumbu glacier to reach the small village of Lobuche – but they didn’t get the refreshing night’s sleep they hoped for, as temperatures dipped to -12°c.
The team reached the highest point of their trek on day 10 – fuelled by Sherpa Stew, a hearty meal of carrots, cabbage, potatoes, rice and pasta – exploring the summery yak pasture of Gorak Shep.
And the next day, well – the team reached Base Camp!
It was an emotional experience for our trekkers. It was more than just an incredible physical achievement – it was a tick off the bucket list, a tribute to a loved one, a celebration of overcoming the very disease that inspired them to take on the challenge.
Trekker and breast cancer survivor Yasmin Haque, who took on the challenge with her daughter Amber, said: “It was one of the toughest things I have ever done – there were definitely points where I wasn’t sure if I could carry on as the altitude sickness and exhaustion hit me, but reaching Base Camp made it all worth it!
“The team were so inspiring and kept each other going, and we definitely couldn’t have done it without the Sherpas, who were brilliant throughout the trek. I got a T-shirt made in Nepal that said ‘It’s not the altitude, it’s the attitude’ – it was definitely my motto! Overall, it was an absolutely life-changing experience and the perfect way to give back to the charity.”
Terry Hayward, who also took part, praised the experience. He said: “Everest Base Camp was an incredible trek and I’ve created memories and friendships I will treasure for a lifetime. After all, the greatest sense of achievement is felt when one overcomes a challenge, and this was a mental, physical and emotional challenge like no other. It’s one of the best things I have ever done.”
Fellow climber Irene Knox agreed – she said: “The whole journey for me has been exhilarating, from meeting the other trekkers on training weekends to going to Nepal for the experience of a lifetime. I would thoroughly recommend the experience to anyone who wants a challenge!”
We’d like to thank everyone who took part in the trek and everyone who donated – all of the funds raised will go directly to helping create a future free from breast cancer.
If you’re ready for the challenge of a lifetime, we’re doing it all again next year, so why not sign up for the 2020 trek?