Today we left the stunning surrounds of Pheriche after our three days of acclimatization. We leave behind us new friends, extensive cake sampling opportunities, decadent high altitude deliveries, and as always a little bit of oxygen. Spirits were high with Ama Dablam giving us magnificent send off. Clouds gave way to patches of blue sky and energizing sunshine, which left a few us wondering whether the two pant approach was wise after all. There's nothing quite like feeling like you are trekking in wetsuit!
Bistari, Bistari, we wondered through yak farms and ancient stones adorned with a fresh coat of brilliant white snow as Cholatse towered over us, following the well trodden path that meanders up to Thukla 4620m were we fuelled ourselves with RA-RA noodles and chocolate in anticipation for the Thukla Hill.
In other circumstances this would be a 20minute endeavor, but here were the oxygen is lacking and your legs feel 10kgs heavier than they did in Kathmandu, this is definitely something to be proud of. Fuelled by Twix and inspired by superhuman porters we finally reach the top passing under an arch of timeless fluttering prayer flags and onto a plateau adorned with numerous Chortens paying respect to those who have lost their lives following dreams or working to make dreams come true.
After a moment's reflection we head to tonight's destination Mother Earth Lodge in Loboche 4960m were we are greeted with a much appreciated cup of lemon and ginger tea, popcorn, and digestive biscuits before heading out to participate in the inaugural Loboche soccer cup (Sponsored by Duct tape and Peak Promotions).
Tensions were high and oxygen was low as the HAPE Harriers and Loboche Lamas headed out onto the 20m x 10m pitch. Tibetan mastiffs cheered and crowds gathered to see the spectacle of skill and blue lips. Oxygen breaks replaced orange slices and for once the goalkeeper appeared to be the most prized position on the pitch. Snow fell and understandably athletes withered leading to a sudden death decision, next goal wins. The Loboche Lamas were victorious and everyone's lungs screamed with relief.
All in all, another fantastic day with the Peak Promotion team. We will head to bed with happy hearts and full belly's with only two questions on our minds, Did Mousea make it? and will the psychedelic wall paper make it into our hypoxic dreams? Let's hope not :)