AGS Base Camp trekking member Sam Baynes has returned to the UK following her trip out to Nepal and Everest Base Camp with Martin and Terry.

We caught up with Sam to find out how her trip went, and just how Nepal compared to her expectations.

How did the trek / trip compare to what you expected? 
It was so different to what I expected. I was told by so many people that I didn’t don’t need to train as it’s a boring, dirty hike but they are so wrong!  If you don’t train for it you will suffer - it was so much harder than expected. In many parts it was very steep and the terrain was undulating and therefore unstable under foot. Regarding the altitude, I felt fine all the time apart from 1 day where I was nearly sent down with High Altitude Pulmonary Edema (HAPE) -  a potentially life-threatening form of non-cardiogenic pulmonary edema (fluid accumulation in the lungs) that occurs at altitudes typically above 2,500 meters. 

How did the scenery compare to what you were expecting?
It was incredible!! I couldn’t stop taking pictures. No pictures or words can explain what those mountain vistas are like. 

Did your physical training prepare you in any way for the altitude? Did it take you by surprise? 
I knew that you can’t train for altitude from the research that I had done but I was just training to be as fit as I can be so my body can handle the effects and recover quickly. I wasn’t surprised because of my research. The best thing you can do is to learn and to be prepared. 


Now that you have been to BC, how do your thoughts of what Martin and Terry have ahead of them compare to your previous understanding / expectations? 
I am so sure that they are as well prepared as they can possibly be. They both know how they respond to altitude and have done the necessary training to be able to deal with the effects. Their mindset is so strong and I am sure that they can handle anything. 


What insight did you get into Russell, his team, and how he operates? 
I felt extremely lucky to be involved with his team. His operations are outstanding and he has everyone’s best interest at heart including the Sherpas. 


What were your lasting memories / impressions of the trip as a whole? 
How utterly amazing, spiritual and beautiful the Himalayas are! How crazy and what a miraculously functioning carnage Nepal is, especially Kathmandu. The people are all so friendly and would do anything for you and I hope to be doing many more mountain trips in the Himalayas in the future.