As Natasha and Ben slowly complete a journey that has them literally circling the globe, read about how Ben used his Everest Marathon to inspire others to reach for a world of possibilities and how he is helping a group of men in recovery find their way home to themselves and their higher potential. Natasha and Ben will soon be home with loved ones, but their journey has reminded us that we too can reach our highest potential. Welcome home.
The finish line of the Hillary-Tenzing Everest Marathon is the highest finish line in the world. Greeted with a "khada", a special scarf signifying "good luck" and "safe journey" and adorned with 8 sacred Buddhist symbols, Natasha and Ben enjoy the relief and triumph of their race. Natasha may have taken the spirit of her legendary running dad with her, but with her tenacity and resilience, she forged a legacy all her own.
On May 29,1953, Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay were the first humans to reach the highest point on Earth, the summit of Mt. Everest at 29,029 feet. To honor them, marathoners gather at Everest Base Camp and half-marathoners at the high mountain village of Dingboche, to run in the Mt. Everest Marathon and Half-Marathon. Today, Natasha Jarvis Burch, running the half-marathon and Ben Ratliff, the full marathon, were among those who triumphantly paid their respects to Hillary and Norgay with a racing accomplishment of their own.
In today's update, you will learn a bit more about Ben Ratliff. Like Natasha's, his is a story that will leave you inspired, moved and ready for challenge. As they absorb the impact of their summit success and allow their bodies to recover from their extreme experience, Natasha and Ben rest and move on toward Everest Base Camp in preparation for their participation in the world's highest marathon and half-marathon. They are not tourists, they are wayfarers and observers, as well as mountaineers, learning about a kind of life so very different than their own.
Pope John XXIII advised "Consult not your fears but your hopes and your dreams." Natasha Jarvis Burch and Ben Ratliff did not consult doubts, fears or uncertainty, but reached their dream of summiting Island Peak at 20,305 feet. Read about their triumphant day in the high mountains of Nepal.