Rest day mischief: Dreaming of the Annapurna Circuit

I’ve had a long-standing dream to trek the Annapurna Circuit in Nepal. It’s not an uncommon dream; the Circuit often turns up in lists of the worlds ‘top ten’ walks. But it’s a dream I’ve always thought was out of my reach. I always thought it was too expensive and took too long to be possible for me. So I never went further than dreaming of the images of the trek that I saw in a book when I was in high school.

It was my birthday this past week and while out to dinner with my parents, we started to discuss hikes we might like to do. Mum mentioned Everest Base Camp but that didn’t really interest me; instead I went home and did some internet research about the Annapurna Circuit. What I found gave me hope of one day living my Annapurna Circuit dream: the strong Australian dollar and highly competitive Nepalese tourism industry means that the trek is now within my price range (if I use some self restraint and actually save my pennies for a year).

Today I had to take a rest day because my shin splints are playing up after my two days of pushing the wheelbarrow uphill in my garden. With my next race only 6 days away I’d rather skip my long run than risk injury. A whole day of rest had led to me getting stuck into some Annapurna Circuit research on the internet.

It’s now almost dinner time. I’ve gone from just idly surfing the net to phoning a friend to ask her which dates would suit her for the trek. She’s a teacher so we would have to go during the Christmas school holidays. I think it would be too soon for my bank account to go this December but it would give me something to work towards after my 12-in-12 Challenge is completed. And something a little more achievable than running the Bibbulmun Track, which was my other crazy post 12-in-12 Challenge idea.

I know that I will go round in circles for the next six months deciding on the next big adventure. I also know it seems silly because I’m only two months into my current challenge. But that’s just the way I am.

Having said that, this time it is the Annapurna Circuit … I’ve already told my partner that I’m going to save up and just book the trip as soon as I have the money (and have decided on which trekking company I want to use).

Who said rest days weren’t dangerous – LOL.

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12 responses to “Rest day mischief: Dreaming of the Annapurna Circuit

  1. Good luck, just do it I say…When are you going?

    • Oh I definitely want to just do it but I need to be able to pay for the trip and to have 4-5 weeks away from work without having to be contactable (the only downside of being a very senior professional). So I’m looking at December 2013. All going well, I hope to be in a financial position to book in January / February 2013.

      December 2013 sounds like a long way off but I can’t commit to go until after my 12-in-12 Challenge is completed in June 2013. I also have a commitment to run the Oxfam Trailwalker Brisbane in June 2013 with a team from my running club. I also really want to be able to go with my best friend of 25 years. She’s a school teacher so the only time she can get 4-5 weeks off work is during the Christmas holidays (our summer here in Oz).

      It will be my first time at altitude (I’ve been to Kosciousko, but it’s only 2200m high). That makes me nervous but I have found an Annapurna Trek that takes 23 days and increases altitude more slowly than some of the others.

      In the bigger picture, I think it will be an awesome follow up to my 12-in-12 Challenge. I’ll be fit from all that running, which will give me a great base on which to work on my trekking fitness.

      • Hi Andrew…I’m climbing in Nepal in November/December 2013. Lobuche East, Island Peak and Pokalde (hopefully!). Our paths may very well cross! Stay in touch…

    • Oh wow! Your trip sounds amazing. I’m following your blog now so will stay inspired by watching your progress 🙂

      I have now set up a savings account and automatic transfers into that savings account. I should have enough money saved so I can book in January or February 2013.

    • BTW: Which trekking / climbing company are you using for your trip?

      • Hi Andrew I am climbing with Adventure Consultants in New Zealand. They are high altitude specialists. I’m over there in a few days for a week and being guided by their Chief Instructor. He’s been to the top of Everest 8 times! Awesome!

  2. Firstly, belated Happy Birthday!
    Secondly – go and follow your dreams. If you are meant to go this year, the money will become available to you. If it is to be next year, then so be it. Once you start thinking seriously about doing things, do you not find that everything moves to allow it to happen? 😀

    • I totally agree. Once I committed to the 12-in-12 challenge my body responded and things started to fall into place. Same for this adventure. I’m going to set up a special savings account today.

    • Step 1 completed … I have set up a savings account and automatic transfers from my pay so the money side will look after itself over the coming months.

      Step 2 also completed … I have put a photo of the Annapurna Circuit as my desktop background at work.

      Step 3 also completed … I have permission from my partner to use our combined funds to pay for my personal dream (she’s a keeper).

  3. Wow, what a great goal! I’ve also always wanted to do it. I say go for it! You’ll find the money, and it will be well worth it.

    • I’m definitely excited about it. And I am confident about getting the money together. I’ve been doing some research. I was worried about Everest Base Camp because of the crowds and the altitude. But I’ve seen some footage of the views and think I must do EBC instead of Annapurna Circuit. I’m likely to start the trek in Jiri so that I have an extra week of trekking to acclimatise.

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