It’s a saying I used to have my students shout out in unison when they had the answer to a problem and would receive points for being the first ones done. I awarded extra points for enthusiasm and by the end of the semester they thought it was pretty funny or at least they were humoring me. It’s certainly true though that I’ve had a wonderful team this trip. Alina, Greta, and Jonathan have been tremendous and the HRE staff has been exceptional as always. It’s truly allowed us to accomplish a lot of work out here over the last couple weeks.
Today was the last day of the team together. Alina, Greta, and Jonathan will be taking off to see some of the areas finer attractions – Kala Patthar and Everest Base Camp. So in order to give them very fond memories of the glacier, we spent 5 hours trekking all over the glacier with the GPR system. This takes a great deal of effort and a lot of hard work. I’m pretty sure we were all on our butts at one point and time as some of the best images come from areas of the glacier where there’s no debris (or very little). So we had a few laughs and a few nervous moments as we went sliding on the ice, but everyone kept their spirits up. In the end, it all paid off. From the previous 3 days, we got ~400 m of good transects simply. After reviewing the 3 previous days and coming up with a new strategy to hike in the “valleys” whenever possible, we were able to gather 600 – 800 m of good transects today. What a great day for them to go out on.
Now the camp becomes quite a bit quieter! They’ll all be missed as they were both solid workers and good company, but I’ll reconnect with them in Dingboche as we hike back to Lukla together. I wish I could join! The view of Everest from Kala Patthar is absolutely spectacular. A couple years ago I was able to catch sunset up there and it was one of the most memorable/beautiful sceneries I’ve ever witnessed. Hopefully the monsoon skies will clear enough while they’re there to give them a great view. As for me, I’ve got a couple days of fieldwork to finish up. I need to download all the data, finish off a little bit of dGPS and structure from motion work, and with any luck, I’ll have an extra day that I can go back to Lhotse. For now, it’s time to hop in the tent while the afternoon rains come and enjoy my 5th book of the trek. Have a good side trip guys! You definitely all deserve it.
PS: Happy Father’s Day! I confess that I had to look up, which day it was now that I am connected to wi-fi again, but Happy Father’s Day dad. I’ve said it before, but you’re certainly a big inspiration in my life and I’m incredibly lucky to have such a wonderful loving family with you, mom, and Anne. Hope you had a great day and can’t wait to hear all about your adventures when I get home.