Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Post Cruise Activities

After the return to Anacortes preparations began for the next adventure for Patrick & Miriam, at least for Patrick!  In early October Patrick and son Sean leave for Kathmandu to participate in a 19 day trek to basecamp for Mount Everest at an elevation of up to 18,500 feet.  Meanwhile, “Spirit” needed maintenance from the cruise, including replacing seals and thrust bearings in the port stabilizer and installation of a new 5 bladed propeller from VEEM in Perth, Australia.

We were fortunate in being able to schedule time with Platypus Marine in Port Angeles and “Spirit” arrived on 1o September for a haulout.  Platypus has a travel lift capable of lifting 330 tons, so “Spirit” looked tiny at 50 tons as we were lifted out and put inside the building.  While at Platypus we also completed the last warranty repairs dealing with the drainage from the wheelhouse roof.

Miriam and Patrick took a few side trips to Hurricane Ridge and Lake Ozette while the work was performed, and sampled several restaurants in Port Angeles.

Coming out of the water at Platypus Marine

Heading into the building at Platypus Marine

New VEEM propellor

Preparing to re-launch
Spirit was re-launched on 17 September and returned to Anacortes the next day under sunny skies and calm seas.

Nepal - the next adventure

Preparation Begins
In early October Patrick and son Sean depart for a 19 day classic trek to the Base Camp for Mount Everest (also known as Sagarmantha or Chomolungma) where most of the summit expeditions are staged in the spring of each year.  They will fly from Seattle to Kathmandu via Dubai and Delhi and spend several days in both final trek preparations and the beginning of the altitude acclimatization process.  From Kathmandu they fly on a STOL aircraft to the Tenzing/Hillary airport at Lukla nearly 10,000 feet in elevation where the trekking begins.  The highest point of the trek is the summit of Kala Pattar at 18,552 feet where the best views of Mt. Everest (at an elevation of 29,028feet) can be seen.

The past month has been the beginning of the training process which will continue up to departure day.  Training consists both of cardio workouts and hiking with 20-25 pound backpacks at increasingly steep elevation gains.  Simulating the altitude is impossible, so Patrick and Sean are substituting weight and elevation changes during the training hikes to compensate.
Granite Mountain Summit

Sean at Stans Overlook - Rattlesnake Mountain

Base of Haystack, Mount Si

Panoram Point, Mount Rainier

Hiking cross snowfields at Panorama Point

Hurricane Hill, Olympic National Park

Snow Lake

So far they have hiked Granite Mountain, Pratt Lake, Mount Si, Snow Lake, West Tiger Mountain (many times), Rattlesnake Ridge and Cougar Mountain (several times).  Patrick has also hiked to Panorama Point on Mount Rainier, getting to an elevation of 7,000 feet, Mount Erie on Fidalgo Island and several other hikes in the Anacortes Community Forest and several hikes in Coal Creek Park in Bellevue (which has elevation gains of up to 1500 feet).  Patrick and Sean try to make each training hike from 6-9 miles with at least 1,000 feet of elevation gain on each hike.  This has been a great opportunity to experience all the great hiking and scenery right in our own back yard, especially in the I-90 corridor just a few minutes away.