Hear Me Roar
Your life has been one adventure after the other—51 countries, Scuba Divemaster, up for all adventures! What are the top 3 most exhilarating things you’ve ever done?
1) Trekking to Mt. Everest Base Camp (17,598 feet elevation). After flying into one of the most dangerous airports in the world (precariously perched on the side of the mountain, notoriously short runway and frequently blanketed in fog), it takes eight days to ascend to base camp, and four days to hike back down. There are no roads, much less cars, and everything--gear, food, drinking water, etc.—is carried by either you or your sherpa, or, if you’re lucky, by a mule or dzo at the “lower” altitudes, or a yak as you gain elevation. Despite it being a week since you have showered and the increasing cold, the excitement is palpable as you reach base camp.
2) Bungee jumping. I did the highest jump in Central America at 469 feet. With tandem skydiving, which is also an incredible rush, the instructor does the jumping, but when bungee jumping, you have to convince yourself that it makes sense to leap, headfirst—that is hard to talk yourself into! A few seconds into your fall, once you realize you are still alive, it’s exhilarating.
3) Rock climbing/deep water soloing near Cát Bà Island in Halong Bay, Vietnam. The bay is dotted with limestone karsts (tall rock formations that protrude out of the water with vertical sides). Some have small beaches, so you rock climb more traditionally with ropes in place; others directly rise out of the water, so you free climb up, and then jump down (if you don’t slip first). It’s challenging but rewarding.