I've spent the past couple of days getting gear together for my Everest Basecamp Trek. It won't be all that long until April so it's time to get serious. I've sent off for new hiking boots, a four season sleeping bag and a Mountain Hardwear down jacket. My friend in Fort Collins, Colorado, Jon Miller, he of The Rest of Everest Video Podcast, set my mind at ease by reassuring me I did not have to spend £300 on a down jacket (phew!) and he also sent me a great check list of what I should think about taking with me.
Considering the whole experience will take place over 15 days the cost of this trip is ... well, let's say it's not cheap. Every now and then, through a combination of guilt and good old Scottish frugality, I mention this to Joanne. She always reassures me by pointing out that this is a once in a lifetime event, something I've always wanted to do and that I had better get it done while I still can.
The other thing I have started to address is my fitness levels. Okay, okay, I ran a marathon back in October and I'm probably quite fit for my age but resting on my laurels isn't the way I'm going to get through this trek. So I've started an intensive walking programme this week and I hope to start incorporating climbing our modest hills over on the west end of the island next week. I'll get back into jogging soon but to tell you the truth I've been feeling a bit of a twinge in my right knee so I'd better proceed with caution.
While I was out walking today I took along a neat little device, a microphone that fits into my iPod Nano. It makes fantastic 'on the move' recordings. As I mentioned a couple of posts back I am thinking about changing the format of this here blog, perhaps moving into podcasting. As I'm training for Everest Basecamp the theme of the podcast will probably be my preparations for the trek and then recording on the trek itself. And, of course, there will be bits and pieces about Tiree. So, we'll see. The idea needs some development.