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Climbing the World to End Alzheimer's
Apr 072015

NamcheI walked the dirt paths of Namche Bazaar shielded from the rain by three story rock buildings. I was careful not to get gored by yak horns or a trekker’s hiking pole.

I find the cafe I was looking for, the one with Internet that worked. As I walked in, it was dark, a pool table was off to my left. A long table were filled with Brits, Germans, and Americans drinking beer, a large latte or just sitting quietly.

A yak train walked by the windows, their bells clankingly loudly.

The music inside the cafe heaved with bass as Stephen Tyler screamed at the top of his lungs through the ceiling mounted speakers. The Everest Bakery, where I left because their Internet was down, was playing mellow Tibetan chants intermixed with New Age elevator music.

A new lodge is under construction. Men with sharp chisels, hammer away at blocks of white stone, making perfectly formed blocks that will create another wall in this village of stone buildings.

At the Everest Bakery, a young trekker told me his story: quit his job, flew to Nepal, no agenda. As he wrote in his diary, in tiny cursive to save space, he looked up, pausing, then said he was looking for himself.

Down a side street, the ATM was not working, the Internet being intermittent with the heavy rain stopped this luxury at 12,000 feet in remote Nepal.

The Sherpa store keepers were putting blue plastic sheets over their prayer beads, necklaces, bracelets and yak wool scarfs, upset the rain was scaring customers away.

A small store that had two barber chairs was empty on this Tuesday afternoon.

A man with a load taller than he was, tried to navigate the trekkers shopping the stands on the narrow streets. He probably weighed 120 pounds, and his load was probably more than that. He didn’t look concerned.

Namche Bazaar, old world people, new world visitors; a village of contradictions

Business is Good

The lodges are full of climbers and trekkers. The lodge owners say business is a bit down but still good. My own observations is that the streets are teaming with people, spending money, laughing and seemingly happy to be in the Khumbu.

The weather continues to be mostly good with afternoon rain or snow. The temperature seems warmer to me than in my previous visits for early April.

The Khumbu is also teaming with film crews, eager to take advantage of the world’s attention on Everest – for all the wrong reasons.

Moving On

Today, we took another acclimatization walk to about 1,000 feet above Namache. Tomorrow, Wednesday April 8, we leave for our next stop at Deboche just below the Tengboche Monastery at 12,687 feet. On Thursday we will visit Lama Geshe in his home in Pangboche. I am so looking forward to seeing him again.

The Internet is said to be weak or missing until we get a few villages higher so it may be a few days until I can post again. Thank you for your comments on the blog Twitter and Facebook. I read each one.

Climb On!
Memories are Everything



Please consider joining ??Alzheimer?’s Prevention Registry. Joining does not obligate you, just provides you the opportunity. Many trails are questions and surveys. Open to anyone over 18 worldwide. 80% of all al trails fail due to lack of volunteers

Comments on/from Facebook

  26 Responses to “Everest 2015: Namche Bazaar is sometimes Bizarre”


    An excellent charity for the Himalyan people is the “American Himalyan Foundation” based in San Francisco, CA. They have an annual fund raising dinner in the fall that is amazing!


    Hi Alan,
    I wish you all the best on your Lhotse climb. Looking forward to following you. Have fun and enjoy your journey!


    Thank you, Alan, again for your wonderful descriptions. Reading this somehow makes me even more excited to fly to Nepal this Monday. Enjoy every moment and every smile. Namaste. Be safe.


    Hi Alan,

    All the best for your upcoming Lhotse expedition. I am keeping a full track here in your website. An awesome job you are doing!
    Even I am also heading for the EBC toward end of April, via Gokyo and Chola pass.
    But the weather is worrisome! Are the Lukla flights even flying for last 1 week? I saw that you reached Lukla around 3rd April maybe, so is the weather OK there? Looks like Namche is all drenched?


    Alan, reading your blog entries make me feel like I’m actually there. I’ll never be able to climb a real mountain, so I’m living vicariously through you! Keep it up, it’s the one thing I look forward to reading every night before I go to sleep.


    Whoops … did not know just posting a link would make the actual video pop up on your site. Sorry about that.


    See YouTube link below to an amazing 7+ minute film shot with a climber’s helmet GoPro, while navigating the Everest Ice Fall, entitled “Mount Everest ICE FALL.wmv”. It definitely conveys the heart-stopping danger and challenges involved, and why it is not for the faint of heart. Be sure your sound is turned on. Outstanding!


    Hi Alan,

    This is my third year following your blog. I find it truly inspirational and one day hope to make the trek to Everest Base Camp. I would love to climb the mountain but fear I have developed the urge too late in life to cope with it physically .. so I climb vicariously through you and the others you report on.

    Climb on,



    Maybe when you return you could post names of trusted organizations or charities accepting donations for regional children, or anyone in the area, needing help with education, health care, food, etc. I know you probably have before, but unfortunately I did not save the information. Your pictures of those beautiful children really tug at the heart strings.
    Thank you, and may you each be blessed with a safe journey.


    Thank you for your excellent coverage. I am looking forward to following along this year on your blog. What a beautiful area. Love the clip of the Yaks!


    Namaste Alan,
    Your stories, photos and videos bring back memories when I trekked to EBC two years ago. It was one of two greatest adventures of my life. The Khumbu is an amazing place. Happy trekking, climbing and drier weather.


    Feels like I am right there with you…all the senses represented in such vivid pics/video..can see – taste-smell- hear and feel the sights, sounds, and energy. Thank you.


    Love the posts and videos. I did the EBC trek last year and fell in love with Nepal. It is nice to relive the experience from your photos, videos and post. Keep them coming as we follow your journey. They are memories of a life time in a country that is unforgettable. My Mom has Alzheimer’s and your cause is very admirable. Namaste to the kids, pet the puppies, enjoy lots of hot tea, have some Pringles(official chip of the Khumbu), eat lots of potatoes, and avoid the Khumbu cough. Travel safely.


    Feeling nostalgic, Alan. Thanks for the updates and sharing the journey. See you in about a month. Stay well.


    Hi Alan,
    I love reading your posts and seeing your photos and videos. I had the good fortune to hike to EBC 2 years ago and can’t wait to go back! Loved seeing your film from Namche. Wishing you fair weather and good climbing!


    I love these posts, videos and pix. I am with you as you landed in Lukla, trekked to Namche and on up to the Everest View Hotel….. my heart never left Nepal after my one visit in November 2013. I support your mission, had a “team” last year for K2 fundraiser and this year joined the registry. I’m 64…not all that much older than you are…love all mountains and hiking on them. Climb on!


    Hi Alan

    It was lovely to meet you in KTM though trifle short. I am climbing with u to read your blog…ankur is lucky to share moments and days with u on the climb. ..



    You nailed it again, Alan.

    Future blog requests (am humbly offering what piques my curiosity, ignore if too mundane):
    Maybe a brief description of the acclimatization process and whether it includes Diamox, if so, when, dosage (125mg/2x/day for prevention, double for treatment of AMS).
    Perhaps, a description of caloric intake now vs climbing, hydration now vs climbing, any supplements (GU, Cliff Bars, electrolytes, etc).

    “Yak-like animals”… Looks like Dzos, to me.

    Keep ’em coming.


      Acclimatizing like I always do Randy, slowly gaining altitude, lots of water and rest. Nothing special eating either, the the houses have great food so I eat my limit at each meal 🙂 Those were yaks at the end of the video – much larger than Zos!


    Thank you so much for this blog, your lovely videos, and for keeping us posted back here in the states. My husband and I are signed up for a Loubche climb with IMG next Spring and eagerly follow your updates. One more year for us…..and in the meantime we have the virtual view with you! Best of luck with everything in the next several weeks.


    These videos and photos are fantastic. I’ve been considering a trek through the Khumbu for a number of years now – you are inspiring me to try and make it happen. Thank you Alan!


      Hello Emily, I have been thinking of trekking through to either Everest or K2’s basecamps. I am 52 and Allen definitely proves most anyone can do it with the right mindset.


    Thank you again for the videos. I really appreciate this insider view of Nepal and the road to Everest. The yak like animals with the long ‘fluffy’ tails – what are they? They are really lovely! Stay safe, and happy adventures on your route tomorrow.


    Love the video–thanks so much for posting. Next time you go into Everest Bakery, get a picture of the world’s best pastry: their apple turnover. My memory of that treat will never fade. Enjoy your time there!


    Hoping for better weather. I hope all goes well for all.