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The Everest Base Camp Trek is a popular trekking route in the Nepal Himalayas that takes hikers to the base camp of Mount Everest, the highest mountain in the world.
The trek begins in Lukla, a small town in the Solu-Khumbu region, and follows the Dudh Kosi river before reaching the base camp at an elevation of 5,364 meters (17,598 feet).
The trek begins in Lukla, a small mountain town where hikers will meet their guide and porter team. From there, the route follows the Dudh Koshi river, passing through the Sagarmatha National Park and the villages of Namche Bazaar, Tengboche, and Dingboche. Along the way, hikers can see stunning views of the Himalayan peaks, including Ama Dablam, Nuptse, and Lhotse.
The trek culminates at the Everest Base Camp, where hikers can get a close-up view of the world's highest mountain and visit the Khumbu Glacier.
The trek typically takes around 12 days and requires good physical fitness due to the high altitudes and strenuous terrain. It is also essential to acclimatize appropriately to avoid altitude sickness.
Overall, the Everest Base Camp Trek is an incredible experience that offers the chance to immerse oneself in the culture and landscape of the Nepal Himalayas while also pushing personal physical and mental limits.
After breakfast, you will be escorted to the domestic terminal of Kathmandu airport for an early morning flight to Lukla (2,800m/9,186ft), the gateway destination from where our trek begins.
After a 40-minute flight above the breathtaking mountains, we reach the Tenzing-Hillary Airport at Lukla. This is one of the most beautiful air routes in the world, culminating in a hillside landing that welcomes you surrounded by high mountain peaks.
Upon arrival at Lukla, you will meet our other crew members, and after some planning and packing, we will start our trek through the prosperous village of Lukla to Phakding. To assist in acclimatization, we will only have a short hike today. However, we can take a side trip to a nearby monastery if you want additional activities.
Walking through a beautiful pine forest, the track leads us along the Dudh Koshi River and crosses many suspension bridges, including the famous Hillary Suspension Bridge. Our first mighty mountain is the glistening Mt. Thamserku (6618 m).
Then through the Benkar, Chumoa, and Monjo settlements, we come to the check post and entrance to Sagarmatha National Park. We pass through the last village of Jorsale before reaching Namche Bazaar, where the trail climbs through forests and bridges until it reaches the Dudh Koshi, where it joins the Bhote Koshi rivers.
After a final steep ascent, taking about two hours, we get our first sight of Mt. Everest peering over the Lhotse-Nuptse ridge. Upon this juncture, we stop at Chautara to admire the view before hiking our final 1.5 hours and reaching Namche Bazaar, the gateway to Mt. Everest and the main trading centre of this region.
Today is the scheduled ‘acclimatization’ day for this trek. However, health experts also recommend staying active and moving during the rest day, so we can either hike to Thame, visit Khunde, or relax and explore Namche Bazaar.
Namche Bazaar is the main centre of the Everest (Khumbu) region. It has government offices, ATMs, Internet cafes, shops, restaurants, a bakery, and a colourful market each Friday evening and Saturday.
Trekking a few hundred vertical feet during the day helps us to acclimatize correctly, so our guides will take us to the Tourist Visitor Centre near the headquarters of the Sagarmatha National Park, where we can observe an assortment of features related to the first Everest ascenders and Sherpa culture, as well as learn about the various plant and animal life of the Everest region.
We will also take an enjoyable side trip up to Khumjung before climbing to the famous airstrip at Syangboche. Above the airstrip is the Everest View Hotel, a deluxe hotel with great views of the highest mountains on Earth.
The Khumjung valley, surrounded by the snowy peaks of Kongde, Thamserku, and the sacred mountain Khumbila, hosts a well-known monastery that houses a yeti scalp before having lunch and walking back down to Namche Bazaar.
After breakfast, we start our trek towards Tengboche, enjoying a superb view of Mt. Everest, Nuptse, Lhotse, Ama Dablam, and Thamserku. Our walk follows this gradual trail with ups and downs, overlooking magnificent views of the great Himalayas.
Along the way, we can spot various wildlife, such as pheasants, musk deer, and herds of Himalayan Thar. The trail then goes down to Kayangjuma, eventually reaching Sansa, the major trail junction to Gokyo valley and Everest Base Camp. The track then follows through the pine forests and, after crossing the prayer-flag festooned bridge over Dudh Koshi River, reaches Phunki Thenga, a small settlement with a couple of teahouses and a small army post amidst the alpine woods.
After having a relaxed lunch at Phunki Thenga, we will then have a tough little climb that goes up steeply through the pine and rhododendron forests until it reaches Tengboche, an excellent place for close-up views of Ama Dablam, Nuptse, and Everest, and it has the biggest Buddhist monastery in the Khumbu region.
We start our trek after our morning breakfast. We pass through several chortens, main walls, and small villages. While on the journey, we enjoy lunch with fantastic close-up views of Ama Dablam.
In the afternoon, we go north to Pheriche or take the eastward trail beneath the towering north face of Ama Dablam. From here onwards, the walk is relatively moderate as we enter the Imja Valley. The valley ahead will begin to open up as we approach the confluence of the Lobuche River.
Then after the confluence, we descend into the river and begin the last and steepest climb of the day up to Dingboche. Upon arrival in Dingboche, we enjoy the beautiful fields enclosed by stone walls to protect the barley, buckwheat, and potatoes from the cold winds and grazing animals.
After breakfast, we will start our day by hiking to Chukumg or Nagargun hill, where you can see good views of Ama Dablam along with such peaks as Island Peak, Peak 38, Balu, and Imja Lake – a famous lake in the Khumbu region. After that, it’s back to the hotel to have a rest.
From Dingboche, we trek up the steep terminal moraine of the Khumbu Glacier. We will find our way through the boulder-strewn slope as we ascend Chupki Lhara, an eerie ridge top with dramatic mountain views.
At the top of the ridge, we will find an array of stones with prayer flags used as memorials to Scott Fischer (American mountaineer) and 10-time Everest submitter Babu Chiri Sherpa (mountain guide from Nepal) who perished on a mission to climb Everest. As the trail drops to the Khumbu Glacier moraine, we find ourselves face to face with several great peaks – Khumbutse, Lingtren, Pumori, and Mahalangur Himal.
We are now near Everest, but the great mountain remains hidden. Nuptse towers to the right as the trail crosses the Khumbu Glacier, and we enter high altitude.
The trail to Gorak Shep goes through the Khumbu Glacier's lateral moraine. We pass through the pyramid signpost, head on the course, and see the crest of the north ridge of Everest, along with Mt. Pumori, Mahalangur, Lingtern, Khumbutse, and Nuptse.
A slight ascent will then take us to Thangma Riju, where we can perceive a 360-degree view the snowy mountains. Upon climbing to the top, through the torrent of the Changri glacier, we catch our first glimpse of Kala Patthar, a grey-green knoll beneath Mt. Pumori. As we reach Gorak Shep, we will be surrounded by snow-capped mountains looming all around us, including Mount Everest, the top of the world.
After a brief lunch and rest, we take the trail to Everest Base Camp through the once-vast Gorak Shep Lake. Continuing straight ahead, we come through the Indian army mountaineers' memorials. As we reach Everest Base Camp, we cannot help appreciating the Everest climbers that take the hazardous route through the Khumbu icefall.
As we reach the peak of our trip, we can view Nuptse, Khumbuste, and Pumori. Please note that the sunset view from Kala Patthar is more admirable than the sunrise view, so it is recommended that we visit Kala Patthar today during sunset.
As the setting sun strikes the snow-capped mountains, the scenery is incredible. For those trekkers who wish to continue to Kala Patthar, the Himalayan Glacier guides and Sherpas can coordinate our hike for a fantastic sunset view today rather than tomorrow.
Today is the climax of our trip. We will start early at dawn to catch the dramatic views from Kala Patthar, witnessing the first light of day as it shines on Mt. Everest. However, we must first be prepared for a cold, dark, early morning departure with potential chilly winds.
Familiar peaks such as Lingtren, Khumbutse, and Changtse tower to the east as Everest reveals itself emerging between the west shoulder crest and Nuptse. During the ascent to Kala Patthar, we can pause to catch our breath and admire several outstanding viewpoints for snapping pictures. After several hours of ascent, we will finally reach Kala Patthar.
From here, we scramble to climb the rocky outcrop near the summit marked by cairns and prayer flags. As we reach the top, we sit on the Kala Patthar rocks. Our eyes take in the unbelievable Himalayan Panorama, wandering from one mighty massif to another before returning to Gorak Shep, where we have breakfast and wait for the other participants to return.
Those visitors who plan to visit Everest Base Camp today will have an early breakfast to start as the Everest Base Camp hike takes longer (4-5 hrs) than the Kala Patthar hike. Upon returning to Gorak Shep, the group will have lunch together, and the afternoon will be used to descend to Pheriche for a good night’s rest.
We begin by trekking down a hillside blanketed by rhododendron and juniper trees. It is spring, and pink and red rhododendron flowers will fill our surroundings. We will either have lunch in Pangboche or wait until we reach Phunki Tenga. After crossing the prayer-flag festooned bridge over the Dudh Koshi River, the trail follows the Dudh Koshi gorge as it descends rapidly through pine forests.
The path eventually reaches Sansa, the region's major trail junction. We will stop at Kyangjuma (3570 m/11,710 ft) for a relaxed lunch while appreciating the epic Ama Dablam Thamserku and Nuptse. After lunch, the trail to Namche Bazaar clings to the steeply wooded slope beyond Kyangjuma, and we can look out for wildlife, such as mountain goats, snow leopards, and colourful pheasants while passing through the forest.
Upon passing a Chorten, we reach the army camp at Namche Bazaar, where we can take one last long look (and picture!) at Lhotse, Tengboche, and the tip of Everest.
Today's trail descends steeply downward, so we must stroll as we battle the rocky terrain. The course begins to level out when crossing the suspension bridges over the fast-flowing Dudh Koshi and its tributaries.
Although we will be travelling the same route down, we will have completely different views, with a mixture of open plains, rhododendron, pine forests, and snow-covered peaks in the distance.
We walk through the Sherpa villages' noticing a solid faith in Buddhism and a culture of prayer stones and flags. Upon arrival in Lukla, we stretch our legs and recall the experiences of the last couple of weeks.
Today, we fly back to Kathmandu after our long mountain journey. The early morning flight drops us in Kathmandu, where we can rest and relax at our hotel or spend the day exploring the city before a farewell dinner in the evening.
The Everest Base Camp Trek is considered moderate to challenging, with daily hikes ranging from 5-7 hours and reaching elevations of up to 5,600 meters (18,373 feet). Before attempting this trek, it is recommended to have a good fitness level and experience with long-distance hiking.
The Everest Base Camp Trek typically takes 12-14 days, including travel to and from Kathmandu. This includes acclimatization days and time to explore the surrounding areas.
The best time to do the Everest Base Camp Trek is from September to November and March to May when the weather is relatively dry and clear. These months offer the best visibility for views of Mount Everest and the surrounding peaks.
It is possible to do the Everest Base Camp Trek independently, but it is recommended to go with a tour group or hire a guide. This will ensure that you have the necessary permits, transportation, and support in case of any issues during the trek.
Packing light and preparing for the varying weather conditions on the trek are essential. Some essential items to pack include warm and waterproof clothing, good hiking shoes or boots, a sleeping bag and mat, a water bottle and purification tablets, and basic first aid supplies. It is also recommended to bring snacks and energy bars for long days of hiking.
The Everest Base Camp Trek is generally considered safe, but knowing the risks of high-altitude trekking is essential. Altitude sickness is a common issue; listening to your body and taking necessary precautions to prevent it is vital. It is also essential to follow the guidance of your guide and take necessary precautions to avoid accidents such as slips or falls on the trails.
The costs and expenses during an Everest Base Camp trek can vary significantly depending on various factors, such as the duration of the trek, the mode of transportation, the type of accommodation, the level of comfort and luxury desired, and any additional activities or side trips.
Here are some of the main costs and expenses that you may incur during an Everest Base Camp trek:
Trekking permit: A trekking permit is required to trek to the Everest Base Camp, which costs around $25-$50, depending on the season.
Flights: Flights to and from Kathmandu and Lukla can cost anywhere from $250 to $600, depending on the airline and the season.
Accommodation: Accommodation during the trek can vary from basic teahouses or lodges to more luxurious hotels. Prices range from $5-$15 per night for basic teahouses to $50-$100 for luxury hotels.
Meals: Meals during the trek can cost anywhere from $10-$20 per day, depending on the type of food and the location.
Transportation: Transportation costs during the trek can vary depending on the mode of transportation. A helicopter ride from Lukla to Kathmandu can cost around $300-$500.
Guides and porters: Hiring a guide and porter can add to the cost of the trek. Guides typically cost around $30-$50 per day, while porters cost around $20-$30 daily.
Insurance: It is highly recommended to have travel insurance for the trek, which can cost around $100-$200 depending on the coverage and duration.
Additional activities: There may be additional costs if you plan to participate in other activities or side trips during the trek, such as a visit to the Gokyo Lakes or a journey to Kalapatthar.
Overall, the cost of an Everest Base Camp trek can range from $1,000 to $5,000, depending on the duration of the trek, the level of comfort and luxury desired, and any additional activities or side trips.
Warm clothing: It is vital to have a good selection of warm clothing, including a down jacket, fleece jacket, thermal layers, and a warm hat and gloves.
Hiking boots: A good pair of hiking boots is essential for the Everest Base Camp Trek, as you will walk over rough terrain and through snow and ice.
Trekking poles: Trekking poles can help to provide extra stability and support while hiking, particularly on slippery or uneven ground.
Sleeping bag: A warm, insulated bag is necessary to stay warm at night during the trek.
Water bottle: It is essential to stay hydrated during the trek, so bring a water bottle or hydration pack to refill along the way.
Headlamp: A headlamp helps navigate in the dark during the early morning starts or late-night arrivals at camp.
First aid kit: It is always a good idea to bring a basic first aid kit on any trek, including bandages, blister plasters, and pain medication.
Sunscreen: Sunscreen is vital to protect your skin from the harsh UV rays at high altitudes.
Snacks: Bring energy-rich snacks to keep you fueled during the trek, such as energy bars, nuts, and dried fruit.
Cash: It is essential to bring a supply of money with you on the trek, as there may not be ATMs or credit card facilities available along the way.
The best seasons for the Everest Base Camp Trek are spring (March-May) and autumn (September-November). The weather is typically straightforward and dry during these seasons, with mild temperatures and stunning mountain views.
Spring is a popular time to visit the region as the weather is warm and dry, and the wildflowers are in bloom. The days are longer, and the temperatures are comfortable, making it ideal for trekking.
Autumn is also a great time to visit; the weather is dry and clear, with cooler temperatures. This season is also famous as the mountains are often visible with crystal clear views.
Visiting during the winter (December-February) is generally not recommended as the weather can be very cold and snowy, making the trek more challenging and potentially dangerous. The monsoon season (June-August) is also not the best time to visit as the region experiences heavy rainfall, making the trails slippery and the views obscured.
During the Everest Base Camp Trek, there are a variety of foods and accommodations available to trekkers.
To trek to Everest Base Camp, you will need to obtain several permits and documents:
TIMS Card: The Trekker's Information Management System (TIMS) Card is a permit issued by the Nepal Tourism Board (NTB) that allows trekkers to enter the restricted areas of Nepal. It can be obtained from the NTB office in Kathmandu, Pokhara, or authorized trekking agencies.
Sagarmatha National Park Permit: This permit is required to enter the Sagarmatha National Park, home to the highest mountain in the world, Mount Everest. It can be obtained from Monjo's park entrance gate or authorized trekking agencies.
Local Area Permit: This permit is required to enter the Solu-Khumbu region, which is the home of the Sherpa people. It can be obtained from the District Administration Office in Jiri or authorized trekking agencies.
ACAP Permit: The Annapurna Conservation Area Project (ACAP) permit is required to enter the Annapurna region, which includes the Annapurna Circuit and Annapurna Base Camp treks. It can be obtained from the ACAP office in Pokhara or authorized trekking agencies.
It is important to note that the cost of these permits and documents may vary depending on the time of year and the route taken. Obtaining all necessary licenses and documents in advance is recommended to avoid delays or problems during the trek.
During an Everest Base Camp trek, you will typically be accompanied by a local guide and a team of porters. The focus is responsible for leading the group, navigating the route, and providing information about the local culture and environment. The porters carry supplies, including food, water, and camping equipment, and help set up and break down camp daily.
Hiring a reputable guide and porter team is essential for a successful and safe trek. Look for a company with a good reputation and treats its employees well. It's also a good idea to inquire about the guide's experience and qualifications and the company's safety record.
Tipping the guide and porters at the end of the trek is customary. The amount is typically based on the length of the hike, and the level of service received. Discussing the tipping policy with your trekking company before the trip and any other cultural customs and expectations would be best.
You Want to Plan Your Trip to, Everest Base Camp Trek ?
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Best Trek forever in My Life
17th December, 2015
My group completed the Everest base camp Trek, CEO Puru is very supportive and encouraging, and nothing was too much trouble. Our guides and porters were very knowledgeable, made us feel very safe, and took care of absolutely everything. They even arranged a birthday cake surprise for two of our group when we reached base camp - above and beyond! They were fun and friendly while always professional too. We had the best trip, we will hugely recommend this to everyone without dought using this company and make the happy trek.
Once again we will have another trip again soon.