Friday, August 22, 2008

Preparing to climb

Many people ask us how we prepare for a climb like Mt. Everest. Our preparation is our lifestyle. We are all very active, always doing something. Injuries have slowed all of us down at various points in our lives but we all come back strong. We are all strong personalities and self confident. Although we do not always agree when it really matters we always support each other. Obviously climbing other mountains and learning certain techniques has also made us more prepared for climbs.

Mount Vinson

We are beginning our research of Mt Vinson in Antarctica, the last of the 7 summits. We hope to do that mountain in January of 2010. It seems like a long way away but preparing for some of these hikes is like starting a small business. Hopefully our success on Mt. Everest will make fund raising easier and we will not have to take a 2nd mortgage out on our house. We now have most of the equipment.
Although Mt. Vinson is not as high as Everest the hike will be long since you start at just slightly above sea level. Everyone in the family will have to do some reading and make their own personal decision as to whether they want to come or not. Since the children are beginning to make their own lives (work, potential partners etc.) new parameters are coming into play.
Climbing Mt. Everest this year was a rushed decision. Most people take a year to plan and we only took 6 months. It also cost us money since many potential sponsors said they did not have enough time to set things up. We are glad we did it however since it may have been the only year all of us could have gone.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008


There are many things that are unpredictable when climbing a mountain. Sometimes you are just in the wrong place at the wrong time - we have no control over mother earth or nature. From the reading I have done, the deaths on K2 might have been prevented if the ropes had been fixed properly. The time taken to refix the ropes on the mountain delayed everyones' summit. However, the risk of an avalanche or a serac falling at any time exists on any high altitude mountain. Most climbers realize that if you climb long enough the mountain will eventually take you. I am sure these catastophes really make people wonder why people climb at all. I cannot answer that question.
I extend my thoughts and prayers to the families of the K2 climbers.