(Back) Into the Wild

Tomorrow we head out once again, to attempt our grand finale; Kyajo Ri. At 20,000 feet, it stands a similar elevation to our other summits, but that connection is about all it shares. This time we will be facing steeper slopes, icier terrain, and perhaps the biggest variable of them all: the unknown. None of us have ever climbed Kyajo Ri, and we have only a faint outline of what to expect. It is a big deal to me in that it will be the culmination of all I have learned on this trip. Everyday I have been learning the finer points of what it takes to be a mountain guide, from how to set a pace and basic first aid, to crossing ladders over crevasses. Because we are all in the relative same position on our knowledge of the terrain, I will get to take part in making the decisions, and using what I have been taught.

I can’t believe that we have been here for more than a month already. It feels as if the time has flown by, each day almost a sensory overload in new experiences had and knowledge gained. Melissa, Ty, and I have become quite close. Spending so much time with the same people seems intimidating at first, but we have really gotten to know each other. Upon meeting them, I was intimidated by both Ty and Melissa’s hefty accomplishments. But I quickly came to realize how much I was able to connect with them, as mentors as well as friends.

I am laying in my room in the teahouse staring at my backpack, all packed up for our departure. Nervous anticipation courses through me, the same as it does with every time I am getting ready to go out. It makes me think of the poem I read in The Outsiders, one of my all-time favorite books.

“Nothing Gold Can Stay” by Robert Frost

Nature’s first green is gold

Her hardest hue to hold

Her early leaf’s a flower

But only so an hour

Then leaf subsides to leaf

So eden sank to grief

And dawn goes down today

Nothing gold can stay

This gold? It’s staying.

2 Comments Add yours

  1. Singer, Maxine says:

    Elliot, You amaze me every time I read one of your posts: for what you are doing and how you write about it. Sometime we need to talk about the trajectory of our family over 4 generations….my parents, me, your parents, you. Love, Granny Max

    On Sat, Apr 16, 2016 at 8:16 AM, Elliot At Altitude wrote:

    > Elliot Singer posted: “Tomorrow we head out once again, to attempt our > grand finale; Kyajo Ri. At 20,000 feet, it stands a similar elevation to > our other summits, but that connection is about all it shares. This time we > will be facing steeper slopes, icier terrain, and perhaps ” >

    Like

  2. Tia Leela says:

    Elle Belle!
    Your Tia Leela has been following your every step with awe and pride. Can’t wait to read about the unknown of Kyajo Ri. You are an extraordinary person, athlete and mountaineer. Emma and I are counting the days until your return. Be safe and bring home that mountain air! Love you xoxoxo

    Like

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