25 Mar 2009: Journeyed today from Phakding (2634m/8640') to Namche Bazaar (3400m/11,600')...

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Today's (March 25) blog was written by Bob Foster and the Teton Valley contingent of the 2009 Everest ER team.

Namaste! We have traded the honking horns, congestion and dubious air quality of Kathmandu for fresh mountain air, the constant click of trekking poles on rock and the clang of yak bells along the trail.

Journeyed today from Phakding (2634m/8640') to Namche Bazaar (3400m/11,600'). Our route continued along the valley of the Dudhjoshi River and passed below the magnificent peaks of Thamserku Mountain. and Kusumkangri Mountain. We entered Sagarmatha National Park at Monjo (3000m/9,180' and finished the day with a challenging climb from the Dudhkoshi River up to Namche Bazaar. All members of the party are travelling well and in good health.

We thought we'd pass along a few "tips for trekkers" for those of you that may be contemplating a similar journey; we've learned a lot in the last two days!

- When sharing the trail with a yak train, keep to the uphill side. Yaks have no sense of spatial relationships and don't experience feelings of guilt if they nudge you over the edge of a cliff.

- "Yaks" are not yaks if they live between Lukla and Namche Bazaar; they are Zopkyo (pronounced "zokyo"). Above Namche they become yaks.

- When crossing a suspension bridge hundreds of feet above a gorge, don't look down!

- Sunglasses are mandatory on the yak/Zopkyo trail regardless of light conditions; 2000 years of powdered dung really flies if the wind comes up.

- If your wrists are sore and forearms falling asleep while trekking, your poles are too long for dessert after lunch, respectfully decline.

- If you want to trek in the Khumbu/Everest Region only go with Mr. Wongchu Sherpa, owner of Peak Promotions,as your guide. Wongchu will keep you safe, well-fed, and treat you like royalty. If, however, he suggests that you eat a local concoction called "diro", respectfully decline.