Post #167- STAYING HERE IN NEPAL FOR NOW, USGS, & Unleashing my Inner Indiana Jones, May 3, 2015.
Yep- I am still here in Nepal. I am choosing to stay here. I’m not just a climber, an adventurer or Ski-Mountaineer. I am a Geographer….a scientist, and I am in the right place at the right time.
If you can, take a look at the recent article by National Geographic:
The article states that Ken Hudnut with the USGS is looking for a scientist in the field who can collect some data from a station near Everest. This day is information about the earthquake and measurements from Mount Everest. I read the article the other day and then by sheer coincidence a former student of mine from when I was a professor (Victoria Stengel) contacts me and asks me if I happed to be available to help with this important project. Wow, what luck for these scientists, and what a neat opportunity to put on my Indiana Jones Hat.
There is a station in the mountains somewhere above Namche with a clear view of Everest. This data station needs to be downloaded to a computer (which I have), and I only have until this Wednesday to find it otherwise the data expires. Ken and John with the USGS told me that Colonel Casey with the Military is bringing the key to open the tripod device and directions to the station and will deliver to me at the Hotel in Namche as soon as possible. Luckily I am acclimatized for this effort to go up high again! If I don’t get the key soon I may have to be authorized to go a break into the data device, but we shall see.
So I wait, but meantime I spent yesterday taking a stroll up to the village of Thame. This is the birthplace of Tenzing Norgay, the first Sherpa to climb Everest. This village was devastated by the earthquake. I filled my backpack up with Cokes and snacks, and made the beautiful hike up for two and a half hours to the village. Upon arrival, many of the houses were leveled by the quake. Many villagers were in need of supplies and help. I spend an hour or so not only taking photos, but handing cokes out to everyone I saw, and even took a bit to help a man as he was rebuilding the wall on his house with stones.
As I departed around lunchtime and headed back to Namche, I was pleased to hear the loud rotors of a military helicopter which landed and dropped off food and water to the townspeople. As I headed down the trail, there were lots of porters on their way up carrying plywood and other building supplies. Truly there is lots of support coming from everywhere and Thame is on the path to recovery.
I will update more soon once I hear from Colonel Casey. Please continue to send your good thoughts and prayers out to the people of Nepal. Things here in the Khumbu are improving rapidly, but I know Kathmandu is still in need of help.
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