The Everest FAQ
Over the past couple of years, The Mountain Zone has had the good fortune to follow several expeditions up Everest. Based on the email floods that pour in every spring, we've realized there are a few Freqently Asked Questions that loom large in the minds of many. Dave Hahn, international mountain guide, Everest summiter, and a lead climber on this year's north side expedition went to great lengths to unravel some of the enduring mysteries of Everest.
1.) How do you go to the bathroom?
"Urination is usually straightforward...ponder that. The other is a bit more complex..." [CLICK FOR FULL ANSWER]
2.) What do you wear and are you cold?
"Certainly on Everest, one wears different clothing at different altitudes and temperatures. The rules are somewhat basic though..." [CLICK FOR FULL ANSWER]
3.) How do you shower?
"So why do you want to shower in the first place? Well, if you insist, do it in the morning when the wind hasn't come up yet..." [CLICK FOR FULL ANSWER]
4.) What do you eat?
"Food is fuel. Eating is one of your chores. Do your chores or you will lose too much weight, be useless to your team and be sent home to the land of all-you-can-eat salad bars..." [CLICK FOR FULL ANSWER]
5.) How do you train for Everest?
"For me, patrolling in a ski area does the job nicely. Play hard, hike as much as possible, haul down hurt people, drink margaritas and get plenty of sleep before flying around the world..." [CLICK FOR FULL ANSWER]
6.) How long does an expedition take, and why can't you just go straight up from Base Camp to the summit?
"If too many symptoms of sickness are encountered at a new altitude, the climber needs to go back down lower, rest and try again..." [CLICK FOR FULL ANSWER]
7.) How heavy are the packs?
"Normally in mountain climbing, the big loads start at 50 pounds and go to about 90 (after that, the climber is lying... which is perfectly acceptable)..." [CLICK FOR FULL ANSWER]
8.) Why are bodies left on the mountain?
"No matter how much we loved and respected our fellow climbers, donating our own lives for the transport of their remains would be unquestionably wasteful..." [CLICK FOR FULL ANSWER]
9.) What is it like on the summit?
"There is a bunch of "stuff" up there these days that people felt the mountain-top couldn't live without. A ceremonial O2 bottle or two, some prayer flags, a scientific set of reflectors that looks like the most out-of-place traffic light on the planet..." [CLICK FOR FULL ANSWER]
10.) Why do you want to climb Everest?
"One must always have some good reasons ready for folks who have no such similar urges..." [CLICK FOR FULL ANSWER]
Dave Hahn, Climber