It was the highest catwalk show on earth, 300 metres above Everest Base Camp - and the Herald was the only paper in Britain to have a front row seat.

As doctors stood by with emergency oxygen canisters, 17 models broke the Guinness World Record for the highest ever fashion show - at Kala Patthar, 5643 metres above sea level.

Oh - and along the way it also just happened to have the most breath-taking backdrop in history - Mount Everest and its towering neighbour Nuptse.

But to cut to the chase: how on earth did the Herald wangle an invite to this most exclusive of fashion shows which only had about 20 hand-picked guests?

By the most amazing fluke, I had just happened to be trekking to Everest Base Camp that very morning.

READ MORE: Scottish wildcats: The kittens with a future of a species on their shoulders

We'd got up early last Sunday and walked for three hours before arriving in Gorak Shep (5140M) which is the last staging post before base camp.

But then I saw all these helicopters buzzing up to Kala Patthar, and heard a whisper that this strange fashion show was taking place.

I promptly abandoned any thought of going to Base Camp with my five fellow trekkers, and instead went up the hill with my excellent guide from tour firm Himalayan Wonders.

It was only about 400 metres but I went up it like an old arthritic dog - climbing at over 5000 metres, where the oxygen is half what it is at sea level, is hard work.

I saw the helicopters, the catwalk, the various tents - and looming over it all Everest and Nuptse. Kala Patthar is probably the best viewpoint in the whole of the Himalayas.

We confidently mooched over to the catwalk and sat down on a rock; I thought it might have been a little presumptuous to have just bagged a front row seat. (Admittedly there was only one row.)

But for some reason one of the crew must have liked the cut of my jib. He came over and asked me to join the local dignitaries.

I beckoned for my guide to join me but he was shy so it was me alone who took a seat next to the fashion cognoscenti, my filthy boots resting easy on the plywood catwalk.

Anna Wintour eat your heart out!

I must admit I made a strange contrast to the rest of the front-rowers - I hadn't shaved or washed for a week, and I believe I smelt like a badger. At least I had the fashion show must-have: my shades.

It seemed I had arrived fashionably late - the show was starting in five minutes. With my trusty iphone in hand and not a cloud in the blue blue sky, I was grinning like a Cheshire Cat. No-one would ever believe it!

But, to be honest, although I loved the incredible views and all the hoopla, I thought the show was just a loopy stunt. More than that: I thought it would be a total wash-out.

But then - I had actually seen the models in action before.

By strange chance, I had started my Everest Base Camp trek a day after the models, and had seen them in Namche Bazar, the main town in the Himalayas.

It was Minus 5 and they were being photographed in Namche's town centre. They all looked very out of place - full hair and make-up - as well as utterly miserable.

The previous afternoon they'd been caught out in a snowstorm and at least two of them had already dropped out.

I saw a few of them trekking out from Namche the next day. They were following a small herd of cattle that had been loaded up with all their modelling paraphernalia. They still looked miserable.

I soon heard about the fashion show - and thought the whole concept was utterly ludicrous, dreamt up by some blue-sky thinking nitwit at MTV.

The only way to prepare the models for the low oxygen at Kala Patthar was for them to walk for at least a week to Everest - and trekking in January in the Himalyas is not for the faint-hearted.

The toilets are, err, primitive; the diet is vegetarian and you certainly shouldn't drink booze at altitude; and then there's the cold. The cold is like nothing I have ever experienced before. The higher you go, the colder it gets.

Once you’re above the tree-line, around 4000 metres, temperatures are often Minus 5 in the day, dropping to Minus 20 at night.

It's so cold that all the pipes are frozen and there's never any hot water. At night you have to sleep with your phone otherwise the battery dies. Wet wipes turn to white bricks and contact lens solutions are frozen solid.

True, the views are amazing. I've trekked in Scotland, Spain and even the Sahara, but nothing comes even close to the Himalayas.

But I wasn't sure the models - from Nepal as well as all over Europe including England, Holland, Finland and Italy - were going to be remotely interested in looking at snowy mountains as their teeth chattered like castanets.

Frankly, I thought it was going to be a disaster; it did occur to me that this was what MTV had always intended.

READ MORE: What it feels like ... to be a champion oyster shucker

As I sat in the front row, listening to the Nepali music, quite pleasant, I learned that all the outfits had been designed and made in Nepal. There might have been a fanfare. Showtime!

To my complete amazement, the models were excellent - haughty and beautiful, and giving it as much va-va-voom as if they'd been at the Paris fashion show.

A lot of the models wore gloves - understandable as it was Minus 11.

The clothes were mainly made, I think, from cashmere and yak hair, and possibly felt on the boots. They were classy, traditional with a Nepali twist.

One guy, a dead-ringer for Matt Smith from The Crown, wore a purple suit that actually quite took my fancy.

This show may have been conceived as a stunt, but the models were giving it everything. They were the real deal.

They'd walked up the hill to the fashion show - and though I'd fully expected these pampered show-ponies to get a helicopter back to civilisation, they were all fully intent on walking back to Namche. Troopers!

I didn't hang around for the air-kissing and the back-slapping at the end, as if I was quick I could still make it to Base Camp.

But unfortunately, Base Camp is just mile upon mile of stones and moraine - a Base Camp trek truly is all about the journey rather than the destination.

In fact it was a bit of a Let-down, but I suppose that was inevitable after what I had just witnessed - the most surreal, extraordinary fashion show on earth, crazy, but somehow, up there in the high Himalayas, just completely magical.