In April 2009 Peace Nepal Treks ran “The Everest Test” when we took a group of 50 people to Gorakshep for the highest ever game of cricket.
This was by far the biggest event we had ever organized and we take great pride in its success. The event raised around £100,000 for charity and was in the news around the world. See below for a short video of the event and the coverage it received.
For us, the project began in November 2007 when Richard Kirtley approached me after reading a recommendation for Peace Nepal Treks at the Kathmandu Guest House. In the beginning, he wanted to take only 22 people and show them, Everest, while having a cricket match at the same time. During the next 18 months, the emails I received from him made it clear that the expedition was growing considerably and it would soon become very important for us and for Nepal.
Soon they got sponsorship from Qatar Airways and Nokia and we at Peace Nepal Treks knew we must do everything possible to ensure that the Everest Cricket match was a success. The first job was to obtain all necessary permits from the related government departments. The Nepal Tourism Board was very supportive, but we also had to deal with the Department of Communications, the National Parks, and the Sports Ministry to name a few. In the end, we had to take three liaison officers with us in order to keep the relevant departments happy.
Once this was achieved we had to deal with the practicalities of the expedition. This involved organizing four flights on the morning of April 12th to get all the clients up to Lukla on the same day and also making sure the incredible amount of equipment they had, made it safely as well. This equipment included lots of cameras for both filming and photographing, satellite phones and oxygen, not to mention cricket pads, bats, and a pitch!
Many of our guides and porters had already gone ahead and met us at Lukla airport and the trek got underway at lunchtime on that day. The only problem we encountered was when the Warden of Sagarmatha National Park attempted to deny us entry because we had refused to pay him a bribe. Thankfully I was able to contact the right people back in Kathmandu and fix the situation and only the expedition leaders knew about it, so the rest of the clients went untroubled. The Warden incidentally, was removed from office for his corruption.
Although some of the trekkers experienced altitude sickness and occasionally had to be left behind for a day with one of our guides, everyone was able to catch up and be at Gorak Shep, the original Everest Base Camp, in time for The Everest Test to take place on April 22nd. Despite many of my staff knowing little about cricket, we were all very excited to be involved in this event and helped to manage the playing area and make sure everyone was healthy enough to be involved.
After the match, when Team Hillary defeated Team Tenzing, we celebrated with the clients as a group and it felt more like a bunch of friends partying together than separate groups of clients and guides, and this is something I am very proud of.
News of the match was reported on such channels as the BBC, ITV, SKY, CNN, ABC, and many more, and it was estimated that 30 million people around the world heard about it. We feel this proves that there is no expedition too large for Peace Nepal Treks, and despite some of the stress that came with it, we now know we can overcome any obstacle in planning for our clients.
“A massive thanks to Nir Lama and all the Peace Nepal Treks team. Hiring you was one of the single best decisions I made during the entire planning stage of this project. It quite simply could not have happened without your skill, determination, support, and professionalism. We all owe you a debt of gratitude and I could not recommend your services more highly.”
I hope you enjoyed the video and the photos. Again, many of the photos were featured in publications like The Times, The Telegraph, The Independent, The Wall Street Journal, The Sydney Morning Herald, and many more.
Founder, Peace Nepal Treks Pvt. Ltd
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