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  • Writer's pictureJim Ratti, '82

Mike Berry & Cathy (Prior) Goodwin Reach Everest Base Camp

Some of this news is a bit dated, but new to me. I traded e-mails with Mike Berry back in January, and he told me that he's retired from his job at Los Alamos National Lab (LANL). He and K are selling their home in Los Alamos and hitting the road for their remaining good years, looking forward to international travel with no home base. They plan on visiting all fun places for 6-12 months at a time. Or, he says, until the police chase them off for having too much fun.

He told me the top contenders for their first stop are French Polynesia, Greek Isles, and Costa Rica. Mike says he's lobbying for somewhere warm for Feb/Mar. He's pretty much stopped all work at LANL, but they’ve asked him to stay on indefinitely in causal status, working remotely up to 40% time, but no minimum. Sounds like a good deal.

Mike told me Donna (Glancey) Schutzius beat him getting out of LANL by about a year.

Mike & K's youngest is a sophomore in college, and Mike's confident they'll manage with parents being remote. Mike thinks Bill Eades bested them on having the youngest child among our classmates. Mike said he was shooting for both oldest and youngest there for a while.

But what's all that got to do with the title of this post, right??

Mike also told me that he, Cathy (Prior) Goodwin and her husband Rich ('80) made it to the Everest Base Camp (EBC) back in April of 2019! Here's a picture of their group at the base camp:

April 2019 at Everest Base Camp, 17,550 ft.

From left to right: Domi Sherpa; Mike Berry, '82; Rich Goodwin, ‘80; Cathy (Prior) Goodwin ‘82; Pakhrin Lhakpa; and Moxie Cameron.

Mike told me Moxie is an Army vet and completed a solo Appalachian Trail trek (the whole thing). He says you can’t see Mt Everest from EBC (even when it’s clear), due to nearby mountains.

Mike had these t-shirts made for his group. They nailed this signed one to the wall (among many other similar ones) in their hotel in Lukla, the closest airport to Everest.

They met Peter Hillary (son of Edmund) leading his own trekking group in Gorak Shep, the last village before EBC.

These are Mike's ‘tea house’ booties that he wore at their overnight stops. Rich found these for him in Kathmandu, when Mike was looking for something big enough for his size 12’s. One look at these and he knew had to have them.

Due to his aged knees, Mike ended up getting a helo ride down, rather than pounding on them some more during the fairly aggressive three-day descent. But he says that now that he has new chromium and titanium knees, he’d do the EBC trek again, if anyone’s game. But first he's probably going to try to get a Kilimanjaro summit completed in January 2023, before going back to Nepal. Mike says the EBC trek was his best bucket list adventure to date and it will be very hard to beat.

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