Six days to go before we are off to Tibet, very exciting. Today I got all my clothes for the trip. Long thermal underwear and a thermal shirt – both can be worn for 7 days without a bad smell according to the sales person at the outdoor shop… Well, I don’t plan to try it out. I am now wearing my waterproof mountain shoes with special socks. Feels quite comfortable. Also we have our sleeping bags, that should be good for temperatures until around -20 degrees. We will need it, part of the trip it will be even colder according to the Tibetan agency that helped us to organize part of the trip.
The freezing cold will be one thing to overcome, but altitude may be even more of an issue. Marcel Ekkel sent me some information explaining altitude sickness and how to avoid it. Basically you should not fly or drive to an altitude over 3000 meters (you should hike up from there to slowly adjust to the altitude), but we are flying into Lhasa (3650 meter). Then you should refrain from too much physical exercise (great news if you do a bike trip) and not climb more than 300 meter per day (our ‘worst’ day has a 600 meter increase I think). Well, we want adventure, so that is what we get.
This is also a good moment to thank the the Shanghai organization team (mainly Gary’s assistant Esther and my assistant Doris). They did an excellent job, preparing the day-by-day trip schedule, organizing visa’s and Tibet travel permits, and getting all the flights and other logistical things organized. It cost them many weeknights and even several weekends. Thanks for the hard work ladies, without you this trip would not be possible! From now on we will have to do the hard work ourselves – on our bikes.