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Special Interests
Acupuncture l Great Wall l Mountaineering l Paleontology


“…Top of the world, looking down on creation…” goes a popular song. And if there is anywhere in the world that you can sing that refrain and feel as if you are in your own music video, then the top of a mountain has to be it. With nine of the world’s 14 peaks above 8,000 meters in China, including the two highest (Mt. Everest and K2) and countless others above 6,000 meters in height, China has been the focal point of mountaineers around the world for years.

There are several mountaineering organizations in China and since it is impossible to make it to your personal music video site without assistance from experienced mountaineers, arrangements have to be made with such organizations. On the other hand, if you would be satisfied with getting as close as possible without having to actually pack serious mountaineering equipment then a trip to the Everest Base Camp might satisfy you. There is a monastery at Rongbuk, which is about a three hour hike from the Base Camp or twenty minutes by 4WD.

Something that may be of concern is altitude sickness. The lack of oxygen at altitudes above 2,500 meters affects most people to some extent. Acclimatization to such altitudes takes several weeks at least and is usually done progressively. Most travelers, however, come up from the sea level rapidly thereby experience Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS). The symptoms of AMS usually develop within 24 hours but can be delayed for up to three weeks, and include headache, lethargy, dizziness, insomnia and loss of appetite. Severe cases can develop without warning and can be fatal. Watch out for a more serious altitude induced complication though. High-altitude pulmonary edema is seen at elevations above 3000 meters within 72 hours of ascent and symptoms include coughing of frothy sputum, which progresses from white to pink to bloody. The victim should be brought to lower altitudes as soon as possible and medical assistance sought.

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