Wade Wheaton recently made a trip to Everest with his son – Jessie – which turned out to be the toughest thing he has ever done.
The 52 year old admits that it was something he would not have thought of doing in a million years but having a 29 year old son with an adventurous spirit meant, he got to experience a trip of a life time.
“He called me up and said he was going to do the trip. Then he said to me ‘Dad, I booked you a ticket too and you’re coming with me.’”
Wheaton spent most of last year training on his bike and clocking up some running miles He also skied cross-country to push himself to his limits. However, despite the hard work, he was nervous up-till the moment of his trip – he was worried he would sustain some sort of injury or not be able to keep up with his son.
Despite his reservations, he flew to Houston on October 29 where he met up with his son before flying to Kathmandu, Nepal. They began their three week trek to Mount Everest Base Camp shortly after flying in to Lukla, a tiny airstrip considered to be one of the most dangerous airports in the world!
The father and son trekked through treacherous ice-fields, rugged terrain, and incredible landscapes all the while carrying a 25 pound backpack.
“I have hiked many different places . . .but this was not even a comparison,” he said. “It was hard work, harder than I ever thought it was going to be. But I did it.”
Their journey took them through a number of tiny settlements where they stayed at basic lodges for $2 a night and home cooked meal. The unspoiled culture and landscape in that part of the world made them feel like they had travelled back in time, claims Wheaton.
Many times along the way, the duo had to pace themselves, sometimes stopping for one or more days to acclimatize at higher elevations. It took them 10 days of hiking to make to EBC, which stands at an elevation of 17,400 feet.
“It’s such a tremendous feeling of accomplishment when you get there.”
Having made it to EBC, the duo then decided to attempt to climb up Island Peak, a mountain on the other side of Everest that stands at 20,300 feet elevation – higher than any peak in North America.
They hired guides back at Base Camp and learnt how to properly use the climbing gear as this would require some serious climbing skills. Thankfully, they were blessed with great weather and with some tough climbing they made it to the summit at around 9:00 am.
“It was an absolutely phenomenal experience.”
The story has been adapted from an article on www.cumberlandnewsnow.com. You can read the full news in the link below: