Saturday, December 15, 2012

Day 3 - Braving it to Baranco Camp

File Photo of View from Baranco Campa
By Pritesh Gandhi
December 15, 2012 - Off to Baranco Camp.  Will keep you posted.  Feel like we are on the moon!  Amazing view of the mtn ahead of us.  Sleeping has been tough for most.  Going pole, pole!

By Ashesh Gandhi - Day 3 at Shira camp began with the usual hot breakfast of porridge, toast, sausage links and omelette. Today we were packed and ready to go at 8:30 am. The trek from Shira to Marangu camp was supposed to be for 6 hrs. We were going from an altitude of 3950m to 4600m at the lava towers for acclimatization and then descending to the Marangu valley at 3950m. We were going at a slow and steady pole pole pace, but Gasper our head guide said we were going too slow. On our way we met JP and JR as well as JP's dad. JP's dad asked me if we were related to Mahatma Gandhi and I said yes with a half serious face. He was intrigued and we all were engaged in a casual conversation as we were trekking and then he asked again if we were related and the moment we said no that we were just joking he quickly left us - that was quite funny. 

The trek to the lava towers was brutal and I think that is an understatement. We were all starting to get pounding headaches. Swetal was more tired than usual. We tried to eat our boxed lunches but the vegetable pie was tasteless and there not much choice. I think we also did not force ourselves to eat and that did not help. Most of us also ran out of water. We had a choice to not get acclimatized, avoiding the lava towers and head straight to Marangu. Swetal was brave even though he was tired to go the harder way. It took us a long 6 hrs to lava towers and then a tough downhill descent to Marangu for another 2 hrs. With sheer determination we all finally made it to Marangu. We were tired, hungry and just wanted to go to sleep. We had pasta for dinner and all called it an early night. Day 3 was tough but hopefully it helped us to acclimatize. Day 4 involves climbing the Baranco wall. 

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