Well it’s official. I will be doing a solo trek across the Himalayas for 20 days. I bought my permits today and leave early tomorrow morning. I feel excited and terrified. On the one hand, this is the adventure of a lifetime. On the other hand, I will be crossing one of the highest passes in the world – 5416 metres high – where altitude sickness is a real possibility.
I will follow the Annapurna Circuit which is a well-trodden trail. After being given a quote of 1500 USD to do this with a personal guide and porter or with a group, I asked around to find out how feasible it would be to do this alone. It turns out my current hostel roommates have come back from this very trek and assure me I can totally do it. I just need to allow plenty of time to acclimatise and prepare for the bitter cold.
The trouble is, so many of the altitude symptoms are the same as the symptoms I experience on a regular basis, so I’m not quite sure how I’ll be able to differentiate between the two. But I plan to take the trek slowly, try to meet other trekkers en route, take an extra two days for acclimatisation at the high pass, and if I’m having a horrible time then I’ll just turn back.
This will turn out to be either the most amazing, or the most stupid thing I’ve ever done. Keep your fingers crossed it turns out to be the former!