Photos of the Day: Mother of All Mountains
Photos of the Day: Adding a bit of light to the darkness as we get through the pandemic together.
This series features travel photos from my archives, shared with you as we shelter in place.
May 10th, 2020
Happy Mother’s Day!
After yesterday’s final post on Sri Lanka, we’re flying the magic carpet due north to the border between Nepal and Tibet where we find the tallest peak on earth: Chomolungma. Also known as Sagarmatha and Mount Everest, she rises to 29,029 feet/8,848 meters.
Twice I’ve trekked up to 18,000 feet to take in the view of this magnificent mountain of the Himalayas. My first trip was in 2000, followed by another trip with J in 2005. Both of these trips took place during a time when many people (including me) were still shooting film, leaving me today with low-quality film scans from my archives to share with you. And as luck would have it, on our trip in 2005, I ran out of color film at the summit of Kala Patthar (where these photos were taken) and had to resort to the remaining rolls of black and white I had in my bag. Film is hard to find when you’re on the top of a mountain!
Normally at this time of the year, a line of exhausted climbers would be making the final push to the summit of Chomolungma. Mid-May is peak climbing season with ideal weather. Yet in March, the global pandemic shut down the mountain and all hope of reaching the top in 2020. Everest expeditions are massive operations with people from all over the world so although there’s resulting economic loss from this decision, the people of Kathmandu and the Khumbu Valley are certainly far less likely to be exposed to the virus as a result.
Wishing all the moms out there, including mine, a very happy Mother’s Day with gratitude for climbing your own mountains and rising above.