30 Apr Ordinary People Achieving Extraordinary Things…
We stumbled across Emma and Trevor late in 2018, and they explained to us their big goals (which we were blown away by) which is part of Project Base8000. These are two ordinary people, wanting to achieve extraordinary things and if you’ve met them, you would have quickly realised, that their tenacity and dedication will not let anything get in the way of the end goal.
Emma Huffam and Trevor Builder are two Joe’s Basecamp Ambassadors. Check out their stories below, what makes them tick and their plans to achieving their biggest goals for 2019.
Emma Huffam – Basecamp Trekking Ambassador
Emma might speak with a soft kiwi accent, but don’t let the affable nature fool you. She’s a powerful woman on a mission. Emma with her partner Trevor, aim to be the first trekkers to trek to the base camps of all the world’s 14 highest mountains.
Conceived in 2018 after her fourth (or fifth, she can’t remember) time in trekking in Nepal, Emma came back wanting a big challenge. She had heard of mountaineers climbing the tallest 8000 meter peaks in the world, in the Himalayan and Karakoram, but never heard of any trekkers projecting them. Coming from the corporate sphere Emma has always had a foot in adventure travel and loved “expeditions amongst big mountains. Apart from the incredible scenery, they provide a powerful challenge both physically and mentally, and they bring you back to the basic essentials of life.” Taking a step back from the nine to five life, Emma and Trevor are doing their next lap at life as adventurers.
ProjectBase8000 has compelled her to “be daring and set big goals” and bought her into the Joe’s Basecamp family. When musing why she chose Joe’s she said “Joe was on the same wavelength with values, with his enthusiasm for adventure, and concrete goal setting.” With the ethos of “being yourself” and “backing yourself” Emma and Joe thrive at the opportunity to encourage, help and inspire others to get out there and get amongst it. They also both raise money for the Australian Himalayan Foundation. This partnership was written in the alpine stars.
Once started, at Joe’s Basecamp she found like-minded adventurers training for big goals, personalised training which has been finely tuned for their next adventure, and support from a “fabulous crew of trainers”.
“You get very specific and personalised training for your own adventure or goal. I’ve been truly impressed with how much progress we’ve made in such a short time, and were now much stronger on our weekend training hikes.”
Which is advantageous as 2019 holds some big items on the list. Emma outlines of the plans:
In early April we are aiming to complete our toughest trek/expedition yet – a 28 day trek in Nepal to Makalu Advanced Based Camp. Climbing up and over the three Cols (around 6,200m), it involves some mountaineering experience. Makalu is the 5th highest mountain in the world at 8,485m and is located 19km south east of Mount Everest, on the border between Nepal and Tibet, China.
In September, we are back to the Himalayas to trek to Cho Oyu (6th highest at 8,201m) and Shishapangma (14th highest – the baby of them all at 8,027m) basecamps, all located on the Tibet, China side. We’ll also trek to Everest ABC (North side) provided that the Chinese haven’t closed this off for non mountaineers. And finally for good measure, complete a circuit around Mt. Kailash (sacred mountain).
If all goes according to plan, by the end of 2019, we will then be almost half way through in achieving our goal –
wait until next year though – it gets even tougher!
Emma’s top tip for someone starting out?
“Trekking requires mental toughness as well as physical fitness – make sure you work on both aspects in order to achieve your goal.”
Trevor Builder – Basecamp Trekking Ambassador
Trevor has found his passion in high altitude trekking, along with Emma Huffam, the other half of ProjectBase 8000. He and Emma aim to be the first trekkers (non mountaineers) to trek to the base camps of all the world’s 14 highest mountains. These are all above 8,000m and located in the Himalayan and Karakoram ranges. The project is called projectbase8000.com which is also raising money for the Australian Himalayan Foundation. He’s a man on a mission!
His reason d’etre is that he likes to have a specific goal or project to focus on to keep motivated – all within a time limit. In his words “By having this focus brings it home on why you are doing it, especially when you have doubts or get distracted by other things happening in your life. Accomplishing your goals provides a sense of fulfilment.”
For Trevor it’s not about box ticking but rather having an overall experience to look back on and encourage others to follow in their footsteps. And the philanthropic bonus of raising money in the process for the Australian Himalayan Foundation makes it all worthwhile for the health, education and conservation in the Himalayas where they are headed.
Trevor has found a second home in Joe’s Basecamp. We asked him what he got out of it apart from the coaching and he came back with “Camaraderie, training alongside highly motivated and like-minded people, support and above all else, being part of an awesome setup. Oh, and chasing (sorry, encouraging) Milo to give me back my shoes!”
Before Joe’s Basecamp, Trevor had been doing HIIT training with another gym for several years, 4-5 times per week. He admits he has been pondering what it is that makes Joe’s Basecamp’s program and community so different over the last couple of months.
Now, he says there is nothing wrong in rocking up and doing a 30-45min high intensive group aerobic class, raising your endorphins in the process and slapping high fives. After all, we’ve all done it and for some that suits their goals. It did for him – or at least that’s what he thought. But Joe’s Basecamp brought a whole lot more knowledge and science to that.
If you’re training for a specific goal such as a triathlon, UTA100, climbing an 8,000m mountain or planning to pull a 60kg pulk on an expedition across Antarctica or Iceland, or planning to trek to Everest Base Camp or Kokoda, then you really need a program that is specifically tailored to you.
Trevor said “There are not that many gyms around where you encounter some of the best trainers in the business with a can do attitude coupled with a number of degrees in sports science or similar and have been with the same gym for a lengthy period of time. This gives you the confidence to back yourself, as you know they are backing you!”
“As our trainer Matt Reid says and I don’t think he would mind if I quote him – ’I enjoy seeing people get the best out of their training session and watching them progress.’ Here’s to that.“
We often talk about people getting out there and getting amongst it, living large and tearing chunks out of life. Trevor’s version of this is, when asked for his ethos on life “Don’t think, just do. Say yes to every opportunity and worry about it later. Be in the here and now – present moment. And never, ever give up!“
Trevor has lots of goals for 2019 and 2020. First, to get stronger and fitter – and maintain it! In early April via their project – ProjectBase8000.com they are aiming to complete their toughest trek/expedition yet – a 28 day trek in Nepal to Makalu Advanced Base Camp, climbing up and over the three Cols (around 6,200m). We say toughest because it involves some mountaineering experience. Makalu is the 5th highest mountain in the world at 8,485m and is located 19km south east of Mount Everest, on the border between Nepal and Tibet, China.
In September, they are planning to head back to the Himalayas to trek to the Base Camps of both Cho Oyu (6th highest at 8,201m) and Shishapangma (14th highest – the baby of them all at 8,027m), all located on the Tibet, China side. They’ll also attempt to trek to Everest Advanced Base Camp (North side) provided that the Chinese haven’t still closed this off to trekkers without a climbing permit. And finally for good measure, complete a circuit around Mt. Kailash (sacred mountain).
If all goes according to plan, by the end of 2019, they will then be almost half way through in achieving their goal – not bad when you consider that they only started the project back in June, 2018.
Wait until next year though – it gets even tougher!
Trevor’s tip for someone starting on a similar journey?
“Be daring, be humble, stay positive, be focused, do your best and don’t be afraid to seek support. And don’t be afraid to look back on life and see how far you’ve come – it can be an amazing journey and things happen for a reason!”
Did you know you can join in on their treks?! You can ask all about it as well as follow Emma and Trevor’s journey over at Projectbase8000.com and they are on all the socials at: @projectbase8000
You can catch Trevor and Emma at
Facebook, Instagram and Twitter: @projectbase8000
They also have another website with treks they’ve done, along with some trekking tips and resources:
Facebook, Instagram: @cutlunchadventures