Why EBC?

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” – Mark Twain

So, Why go to the Everest Base Camp?

Because I can. (OK just kidding).

When I shared my plans to trek to the Mt. Everest Base Camp (EBC) with my dearest and nearest, I received a wide range of reactions. My wife was not happy, not because of my decision to trek to the EBC, but because she was not part of making that decision. My friend Ed said “ Why EBC, why don’t you just go to Mt. Whitney or Mt. Rainer etc. here in the States? Rangers can rescue you and you get the best medical treatment if something goes wrong. Another friend, in his 50s, said “ Oh the Base Camp? – I did it in my 20s and at that age found it to be extremely difficult and dangerous, I had to be carried down on Sherpa’s back as I broke my foot”. An employee at a local outdoor sports store where I buy my gear gazed at the extra pounds in my mid-section for a moment and diplomatically said “well you got to do it in your life time – I have been to Annapurna Circuit two years ago… blah blah blah.” Others had no clue about the EBC so their naive questions ranged from “how long does it takes to drive there from Kathmandu?” to “do you have to ride on a mule?” to “is there a direct flight?”

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Panoramic view of EBC trail on the way to Gorakshep

So here are my reasons. About a year ago, I left my cushy cubicle confinement to pursue my lifelong dream of travel, art, and entrepreneurship. Additionally, I wanted to do something special – challenging and rewarding – for my 50th Birthday. I also wanted to resume my connection with outdoors that I had left since my doctoral studies in wildlife conservation. The EBC trek gave me a reason to get back into shape and resume my passion of connecting with nature.

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A panoramic view of Gorakshep, Kala Patthar, and the trail leading to the Base Camp

Others in our group had their own reasons. Kamlesh wanted a different experience and perspective in life and to see what happens to the routine of your nearest and dearest when you are away for an extended period of time – completely detached from the routine. Dr. Dipak wanted to see the top of the world from as near as possible. As a part of wandering in the Himalayas (he has been to Kailash-Man Sarovar 8 times and has spent 4 months in Antarctica – he is a seasoned traveler) he wanted to feel its holiness, its various moods, and see if he can be a part of nature there. Similarly, Manubhai had been to the Himalayas before and it was his lifelong dream to experience the holiness of the Himalaya with a group of like-minded people. For Rush, it was a different reason, he was missing professional shave he had in Kathmandu over ten years ago! (just kidding).  After completing Surpass in Himachal Pradesh 12 years ago, the EBC trek was on his bucket-list of things to do before turning 50 (give or take a couple of years!).

As they say, there are many reasons for not doing something but there is only one reason for doing something – you just want to do it!

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You are what your deep, driving desire is
As your desire is, so is your will
As your will is, so is your deed
As your deed is, so is your destiny

(Brihadaranyakopanishat 4.4.5)

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