Tackling Mountains

by Emily Hancock  <Submit your comments to the author>

Trish Kaplan pursues adventures few women would dare undertake. Inspired last year by a fierce desire to test her body in a beautiful and remote mountain you can see only on foot, she booked a trip through Wilderness Travel in Berkeley California to Pakistan, (where women have no rights,) for a16-day trek on foot to Snow Lake. Only 5 people were hardy enough to endure this climb through day-time temperatures that reached 120 degrees and nights that were below freezing to a summit where the ice glaciers reached altitudes of 17,000 feet. One other woman--half her age--was part of the group. The others were a blacksmith, an artist and craftsman, and a climber. What about facilities? They carried a shovel for a toilet and a lighter to burn their toilet paper. An ice ax and boot crampons were essential to experience this wild, inaccessible culture.
 
Covered from head to toe (per local custom) in a loose wrap, Trish herself did not realize how much weight she lost with the exertion. Lean to start with, she came to her job as a court social worker much thinner than when she'd left. Her husband's reaction? "He thought he had tamed me," she laughs. "Now he realizes he has not broken my spirit.!"

This year the husband took her along on a trip to Chile, the Galapagos, and the ruins of Equador. Said Trish just before she left, "If it had been up to me, I'd have chosen a more dangerous trip." But on the trip, the two of them were mugged by four men who knocked them out, stripped them, cut their money belts off, stole their jackets, their watches, their eye glasses, and even their shoes. Trish came to first, and gave chase--until she realized her husband lay unconscious on the sidewalk. Safely back on American soil she comments, "tackling mountains, as dramatic as that sounds, at this moment seems safer and preferable to dealing with human elements!"

But chances are that she'll soon tackle another adventure. Moxie will update her travels when she does.


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