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Bad Altitude Info Award , June 2011

June 20, 2011

Just when you thought you had heard it all , from the Loveland Ski FAQ : make a solid foundation for your cerebral edema with low sodium diet , and high water intake – starting one week (!) before ascent.

There is no full proof method for avoiding altitude sickness, but drinking extra water and avoiding salty foods the week before you arrive seems to be the most helpful. For more info click :

( No , the American Heart Association has never , ever said anything like this. )

Runner up : the New York Times travel blog , for high lighting the dangers of the train ride to Lhasa – and failing to notice two separate oxygen delivery systems in every car , at every seat.

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3 comments

  1. Hi there. I am going on a bike trek from Llhasa to Kathmandu, coming from low altitude. The tour spends three days in Llhase before setting out. They could not get me on the plane out of Kathmandu so I will have only 2 days in Llhasa. Do you think this will be a problem?

    Thanks.


  2. Three nights at Lhasas altitude is more or less a standard recommendation before going higher in sleeping elevation. How much of a problem this will be will depend on where you spend the first nights after Lhasa. On the positive side the highest night shouldn´t be more than six hundred meters higher than Lhasa – unless you are going for Everest Base Camp as well.

    What you can do from the Kathmandu end is to try to get at least one night at least near 2000 meters : the minimum alternative is a night at Nagarkot , easily reached from Ktm. Best alternative is of course a short trek. NB : time spent below 1500 ( Kathmandu is 1280 ) gives literally zero acclimatization.

    Also talk with a good doc ( like the CIWEC clinic in Ktm ,http://korta.nu/ciwec ) about using Diamox for the fly in and next days.


  3. Normally I don´t comment on non-English material here , but this is interesting for fellow Swedes : http://www.vf.se/nyheter/allman/ont-om-syre-men-tibet-fantastiskt

    The article says that you need to drink up to six liters of water (!) to prevent AMS on the train to Lhasa , while using supplemental oygen, and then goes on to describing fighting the impulse to vomit while pushing down fluids. An interesting sidelight to the belief in water as a panacea in general is seen in Läkartidningen , by a professor in physiology, titled ” Drink When Thirsty – Too Much Water Can Be Lethal ” :

    “No data supports that large amounts of fluid in any situation has a benifical role , on the contrary it can provoke dangerous conditions and death. ”

    http://www.lakartidningen.se/store/articlepdf/1/11357/LKT0907s448_449.pdf



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