PODCAST: MOUNTAIN MALARKEY
Stories, interviews and actionable advice on everything trekking and climbing related from the Evertrek Yetis
Training, equipment, nutrition, mindset… or just some inspiration on the next big adventure. The ‘Mountain Malarkey’ podcast with the Evertrek Yetis Andy and Dave might be just what you need. We caught up with Andy on his way to the summit of Cadair Idris on a wild and windy day in the Welsh Mountains.
Tell us more about the Mountain Malarkey Podcast and what inspired you to begin it?
Firstly we realised everyone was so busy with life, work, family, adventures and so on, we thought if we did a podcast people could listen while driving, in the gym and on the go. We wanted the content we put out on Facebook to be available to listen to wherever. Also, we realised that especially in the outdoor realm there weren’t an abundance of decent podcasts, so we thought we’d get it out there and answer some of the questions people had about mountain trekking. So for example the first podcast was about the dangers of trekking at high altitude. We want people to feel comfortable with understanding these things before they go on trips with us. So we’re really happy with it, we’re reaching a new audience, and people seem to love it so we’ll crack on and do some more!
What has been your greatest adventure to date?
It’s a big question! The first time I went to Everest Basecamp in winter, it was just after the earthquake, over 5 years ago now. It was such an unknown, as I’ve always suffered from asthma, and I wanted to see how I’d get on at altitude. Fortunately, it was fine… I loved it and was hooked! I totally fell in love with it, and look what happened – we set up Evertrek, which has been fantastic. There have been lots of adventures, with travels all over and in life in general. But starting Evertrek, and helping other people to go on adventures has been one heck of a journey in itself. That has to be up there as well.
What has been the toughest challenge you’ve ever taken on?
I actually did the Lairig Ghru in winter 2019… it took us 17 hours because the snow was so deep. That was really hard. Kilimanjaro can be incredibly tough too. Also hiking to Everest Base Camp in winter; it was -25º, very challenging conditions. I think those are some of the toughest things I’ve done personally. It’s all about the challenge!
Where is your favourite place on earth?
Another big question! There are so many places I love… New Zealand, Scotland, Wales – just look at these lovely summer conditions here today! The Himalayas has certainly got a big piece of me. Every time I go there it’s a new experience. I’ve been to Everest Base Camp five times now and every time has been different. It never gets boring, you’re travelling through this fantastic landscape of villages and communities. It certainly leaves its mark on you, and I think it’s my favourite place. It’s way more than simply trekking or climbing, it’s a different experience for everyone. People go up there and say that it’s changed their lives. I think that once people have the realisation that they can achieve these things, such as making Everest Base Camp, it opens up a world of possibilities. It’s not just for elite climbers and high altitude junkies, it’s for everyone! And everyone has their own Everest to climb. But yes, Nepal is the place, 100%.
What’s the best part of an expedition; the physical challenge, the connection with nature or the people you meet?
It’s great when you achieve something, when you set yourself a goal and you reach it, but it’s more the people you meet along the way. And the landscape… and the suffering! Some of the best moments I’ve had are seeing people’s reactions at the summit. Shedding a tear, big high fives, big hugs… those moments will stay with me until the day I die. It inspires me to want to do more for those people, especially our Evertrekkers! They become friends. It’s all about the people, and all about the journey they take too.
Some of the best moments I’ve had are seeing people’s reactions at the summit. Shedding a tear, big high fives, big hugs… those moments will stay with me until the day I die.
Do you currently have any adventures planned you can tell us about?
Covid has been a challenge for everyone. But the next big one I’m hoping will be Aconcagua in Argentina, which is the highest peak outside the Himalayas. That’s going to be a biggie. I have ambitions to climb Everest, and am working towards that, but it’s something you’ve got to be ready for. You’ve got to plan, train and get experience.
What does adventure mean to you?
I suppose even a day like today sums it up nicely. It’s my birthday today and we’ve spent so much time in lockdown, I wanted to come out here on an adventure because although I’ve climbed Cadair Idris before, it’s just getting out here, having some thinking time. You’ve got to make time to have adventures, whatever they may be. Whether it’s summiting Kilimanjaro, going to Machu Picchu or Everest… it could be climbing Cadair Idris! I haven’t seen anyone here today and I’ve been out for 3 hours, which is amazing. It’s getting out and spending time in nature. You could be surfing, fishing, climbing, riding your bike… whatever it is, it’s your own adventure. It’s about the journey – it’s a cliche I know, but life goes fast, and you have to do everything you can to maximise that time.
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Andy Moore from Evertrek
Andy Moore set up EverTrek after experiencing firsthand the fantastic treks in Nepal and wanted to not only help the country by supporting local trade but also help avid adventurers to get out of their comfort zone and test themselves in the Himalayas and beyond. Andy’s love and passion for the mountains and outdoors feeds down to the day to day running of Evertrek and the way he’s built the EverTrek community. His goal is to inspire people to not only reach the summits of mountains or trek to places like Everest Base Camp but also love the journey along the way, as he puts it ‘It’s all about the journey’. EverTrek specialise in high altitude trekking to iconic destinations like Everest Base Camp, Machu Picchu and Kilimanjaro with sustainability at the companies heart. Doing all they can to save the planet one trek at a time.