The Operation Department of Explore Himalaya organized an orientation workshop for the benefit of other employees. The Sherpas and other members of the operation dept. took turns to speak about and to demonstrate what sort of preparation is required and what goes on during a trekking and climbing expedition. All the employees of Explore Himalaya participated in the workshop.
The program started with the serving of breakfast at the dining tent, which was pitched up to give a touch of authenticity . The dining tent can accommodate around 20-25 people. Ram Kaji Tamang and Phurba Sherpa, both old hands and experienced ‘sirdars’, took turns at explaining at what goes on during a trek and expedition. While the breakfast was being served, Phurba Sherpa enlightened the participants on how the day starts while on an actual trek or expedition. The crew is led by a ‘sirdar’ under whose command are the Sherpas , kitchen crew and porters. Every evening he briefs the members on the next day’s schedule.
According to him the members are woken up with a cup of tea brought to the members’ tents. After that they are provided with a basin of hot / lukewarm water to wash themselves. After washing up they assemble at the dining tent where breakfast is served. The members get ready and begin the day’s trek after breakfast.
Ram Kaji Tamang explained that two types of tents are used for sleeping while trekking and on expeditions: ‘Two men dome’ and ‘A’ shaped. As the name suggests the Dome tent is shaped like a dome, semi-circular, and can accommodate two people. Foam mattress with insulation underneath is provided for sleeping. The tent has an inner and outer cover. Even if it rains or snows the inner shield keeps the tent dry. According to Ram Kaji Tamang, this type of tent has been used for several expeditions including the expedition to Everest. The ‘A’ shaped tent is shaped like an ‘A’, and is more spacious. But a level surface is needed to pitch it up. The dome tent can be pitched up in uneven surfaces too.
The inflatable Gamow Bag was next in line. According to Phurba, the gamow bag is a must during expeditions and trekking, especially in the higher altitudes. It acts as a life saver during an AMS attack. The Sherpas explained that they always take a gamow bag along with them.
Next on the agenda was a discourse on climbing and fixing rope , together with an exhibition of climbing equipments and clothing used during an expedition. Ice axe, ropes, carabiners,mountaineering boots, ice screws, harnesses, crampons, down suits, mountain boots etc. were on display.Two of the Sherpas gave live demonstration on belaying by climbing on a nearby tree using harnesses and ropes.
Lunch was served, prepared by the kitchen stuff and included items served during a trekking and climbing expedition. The orientation workshop came to a closure after lunch.