About our Cho Oyu Expedition: The all girl 'Extreme Chicken' expedition will take place in August 2008. It will take up to 10 weeks to reach the summit of Cho Oyu (8200m).
High mountains are dangerous places, and the summit of Cho Oyu is well into 'the death zone', where serious medical conditions can occur if you're not properly acclimatised or your body can't cope. Along with our guides and Sherpas, we will be contending with difficult glacier crossings, rock and ice climbing, possible avalanches, rapidly changing conditions and temperatures, as well as the sheer effort of living at high altitudes for weeks on end. There is nothing easy about climbing Cho Oyu and we will need to be prepared for all manner of difficulties.
Climbing at high altitudes is not just about being fit and strong. Just getting there will take an enormous effort - both mentally and physically. When everything in you is screaming to go down to where the air is thicker and your body can work normally, you have to keep putting one foot in front of the other, and going up. At least 70% of the challenge is mental.
Skiing from the summit will be a massive buzz. To be the first British girls, and one of only a handful of people ever to achieve this, we’ll be returning to base camp in style! We’re not imagining powder or an easy ride, but just putting a turn or two above 8000m will be something very few people in the world have ever done. Overcoming the odds - the mountain, the weather, and our fear will be the greatest achievement of our lives.
About us: We are Steph Lightfoot and Emma Jack. We met 3 summers ago in the French Alps, sharing our passion for skiing and climbing. Steph lives in Chamonix all year round, where she skis, climbs, runs, hikes, bikes, and is generally up for any kind of adventure. Emma is based in Meribel in the winters, and Chamonix in the summer. An experienced skier and mountaineer, Emma is always the first to say yes to the next hair-brained scheme …
Our training starts now (summer 2007). From climbingMont Blanc, to running the Tour in 3 days (instead of the usual 10) we’re on a mission to be in the best physical shape possible for our adventure. In preparation for Cho Oyu, we will be visiting Nepal in October 07 to set up the trip for next year, as well as trekking to Everest Base Camp, and climbing Mera peak (6400m). Over the winter, we’ll be skiing the steepest, most challenging slopes we can find. And in spring 2008 we’ll be traveling to Alaska to spend 2 weeks camping and ski touring, as well as to ski tour Elbrus, Europe’s highest mountain.
You can keep in touch with us, follow our progress as we train for our adventure, and see our photos & video diary at our blog, or check out http://www.extremechicken.co.uk/
How you can help us achieve our goal: Please make a donation at www.justgiving.com/extremechicken to help us achieve our goal and help raise as much money as possible for the Samaritans! Without your help, our fundraising challenge won't be possible. Donating through Just Giving is simple, fast and totally secure. It is also the most efficient way to sponsor us: Samaritans will receive your money faster and, if you are a UK taxpayer, an extra 28% in tax will be added to your gift at no cost to you. So please sponsor us now!
Big thanks to: Big Thanks to our sponsors for helping to make this dream become real: Salomon, Extreme Sports, Dream Guides, Natives and the Samaritans, who have pledged to help support our expedition*.
Biggest thanks to all the individual people supporting us, and who have sponsored us. It's massively appreciated by both us and The Samaritans.
Many thanks for your help.
Steph & Emma
* The Samaritans have kindly agreed to help make our trip to Cho Oyu a reality. They have pledged to refund some of the training and travel costs we incur in achieving our dream. We guarantee that our project is 100% not for profit.