Ready to go

Monday 13th October 2003

With only hours to go before the off I thought that I'd write my first diary entry before my team and I start our long journey to the roof of the world. With my globe of the world facing me as it sits on top of my PC monitor I can see where I need to be.

Currently, at home in London I'm surrounded by wheelchairs, rucksacks and equipment just waiting for the starting pistol to sound and then the expedition is underway, no going back - upwards and onwards from here on in.

I often get asked what's it's like the night or day before the 'off'? Well to be honest it's a mixture of relief, nerves, trepidation and excitement, which all adds up to not much sleep the night before. Just to add fuel to the fire this expedition is the biggest, hardest and most expensive one I've ever organized.

The Everest Base Camp 2003 expedition has been part of my everyday life since Paul Deegan and I were traveling back from Antarctica more than 20 months ago. Those last 20 months have been spent talking to financial backers, equipment suppliers, supporters and of course training hard. Putting this trip together has been a full-time job.

A dear friend of mine has agreed to take me to Heathrow to catch my flight which is bound for the Middle East and then on to Nepal. It is here at Heathrow that I will meet my team - Neil, Kim, Ruth, Rachel, Mark and Graham.

Finally, may I take this opportunity to thank everyone who has been involved with this project including sponsors, equipment suppliers, my expedition team and my UK support team. Without them this trip would not be possible.

I look forward to sharing my Everest with you all during the expedition (via regular reports on this website) and after I return from the roof of the world.

So I guess this is it time to go!


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