Les Shires completed the 1,200 mile trek from Kathmandu to Everest Base camp with his dignity and fitness intact. He struggled though encounters with a mad bull, unsocial Yaks, outdoor latrines and the local high alcohol beverage.
He survived altitude sickness even though his walking companion (with many years Everest trekking experience) was rushed to a local medical centre half way through with all the classic symptoms. Everyone at the Shed, however, had one nasty experience when we thought his small plane had crashed at Kathmandu airport!
Les related his days to us as they unfolded around him and we were treated to his highs and lows – aching feet and limbs, spectacular views of Everest rising majestically through the clouds.
Would he have changed any of it? “No,” came Les’s emphatic response. “I have seen things I have never seen before, met people I would never have met and seen a way of life that I could only have guessed at.” There was something else as well. “I have proved that age need not be a barrier. If you keep fit, maintain an interest in life and are prepared to break through some barriers, life begins at 65!”