The sherpa cowboy

By | April 25, 2010

Day 8 started at 530am with coffee. Breakfast at 6, leave at 7. Our coldest morning yet. We were on the shady side of a windy valley. The water pipes running to the lodge were frozen, toilets unflushable, frost on the ground.

We parted ways with Austin, aka Captain Canada. He is on his way to summit Island Peak. We all wish him the best.

It was a steady climb. No major hills, a few stream to skip over early in today’s journey.

We stopped in Dughla(15,090ft) for a quick tea and rest. We stayed no more than 30minutes.

As we were leaving we noticed a Yak who was tied up in a bag he was packing. The bags they usually pack are about the size of a hockey bag and are stacked 2 on each side, with 2 or 3 on the top row. This Yak had 2 on the sides, and 2 on the top. One of the top row bags had end handles on it, and the Yak had managed to get his left horn stuck inside of it. He seemed to be in distress, with his head being pulled in an awkward angle to the left.

Without a thought for his own safety, our very own Super Sherpa Extraordinaire, Kami, ran towards the Yak and attempted to save it from it’s current situation.

Approaching ‘slowly slowly’ (his words), and using a calm mellow tone in his voice, Kami was able to grab a hold of the Yaks right horn and try to get it’s left horn unhooked. The Yak shook him off like a flea.

Kami dropped his backpack and went right back at it. While wrangling this 1000lbs animal, Kami was able to hold on long enough this time to pull the handle off of the horn and free it once and for all. The crowed cheered with delight.

It wasn’t until I showed him the video I captured on my camera that he realized the true gravity of what he had accomplished.

If you have been reading my blog from the start you will have seen Kami in a orange foamy cowboy hat and I made a joke about him being a Sherpa Cowboy. Well ladies and gentlemen, he truly is a real life Sherpa Cowboy and I have the video to prove it!

We stopped by a hilltop memorial area for all the fallen mountaineers of years passed. With a great background we posed for group shots taken by a fellow Canadian trekker who was passing by.

We ended up in Lobouche(16,207ft) in a small lodge that drops to a freezing cold as soon as the sun hides behind the surrounding mountains.

We played a little Texas Hold’Em until 8pm-ish, then we all retired for bed.

Tomorrow, Day 9, we strike for basecamp. Our bags will be packed before we eat breakfast at 6am, and we will be out the door shortly after.

I am wearing my excitement on my sleeve. I’m hyper (what else is new), giddy, anxious, and nervous.

More to come…