Everest Base Camp Trek

1, Dec 2019 | nepaltraveller.com

Everest trekking trail t everest: top of the world

There may be only handful of people who may not have heard about Everest, the tallest natural structure on the face of the earth. Basically, the top of the world. When we talk about Everest, it isn't merely about the mountains or the landscape that this region possess. Everest is never complete with the local inhabitants of this region, The Sherpas, toughest climbers there ever are. Moreover, their struggle, hospitality and genuinity is what keeps the trekking industry booming despite accessibility issues. Wooden houses, local delicacies and unique culture is what keeps travellers coming to this heavenly destination for not just once but again and again. It was their dedication and commitment which led to one of the greatest feet for mankind, The Everest summiting.

Everest Base Camp is included in every mountianeer's bucket list. The trek initially starts from the Lukla Airport (An airport at the highest altitude). Namche Bazaar is the biggest hub in this region. Everest provides us eight tributary trail in this region. Kalapathar is the highest point in this route.

Everest Base Camp Trek (EBC TREK) 

EBC Trek is also know as Kalapathar trek. This gigantic yet gorgeous mountain has become iconic station for every nature enthusiasts. Everest Base Camp Trek is one of the toughest trek involving at least 10-14 days of continuous walk up till the elevation of 5,364 mt where the base camp is located. Passing through the famous Namche Bazar, one can reach Everest Base Camp without having to camp even once. Yes, they do have tea houses until Gorakhshep serving pretty much anything that any trekker would require.

The typical trek begins from Lukla, a beautiful hub, to which daily flights takes off from Kathmandu. There are two more routes to take from; Jiri or Phaplu. The trek for first two days is not so tiring but as you pass through Namche Bazar (3,440 mt) and start gaining altitude, you can feel that the air starts getting thinner and you need more effort to even take a step. Despite accessibility difficulties, this region has developed itself and has been able to astonish people with its magnificence. The Khumbu Glacier sitting right at the base camp is another fact that will astound anyone. One can only imagine how the climbers make their way to the top of the world conquering this moving glacier. Tengboche is another place of interest for Buddhist pilgrims as it has one of the biggest monasteries in Solukhumbu region.

This community is dominated by Sherpa. Other ethnic group like Rai, Gurung, Newar are less in comparision. Buddhist is the major religion; almost followed by whole community. In this high altitude settlement,the people dress in thick clothes made with pashmaina and wool. The cultural dress of Sherpas are Bakhu and Docha. Manirimdu and Lhosar are two major festivals that are celebrated with great enthusiasm in the Everest region. Sherpa Stew and Yak Tea are the must try delicacies while trekking in Everest region.

Facts about Everest Base Camp Trek

Maximum Elevation: Kalapathar (5600 mt)
Trek Duration: 14 days
Trek Category: Moderate
Accommodation type: Tea House
Best Season: March-May and October-November
Trek Restrictions: No
Trek Permits: TIMS, Sagarmatha National Park Entry Permit

Outlined Itinerary

Flying above the altitude of 2860mt, the most popular trek begins from the Lukla. The Everest Base Camp itself sounds so magnificent that people all around the globe would love to visit it once in their lifetime. Not so much a trek itself, but rather an optional short hike on the Everest Base Camp trek, Kala Patthar is a hill that provides the best viewing point of Everest Base Camp and the surrounding peaks.

Day 1 : Flight To Lukla and Trek To Phakding 

The first flight to Lukla takes place very early in the morning. Lasting about 40 minutes, the plane ride gives you a scenic view of the ranges and finally lands on the narrow, sleeping runway high above the Dudh Koshi River. 

The trek to Phakding is an easy walk for the first day with a mostly downhill leg. The trek will take you through pastoral lands through several small villages and farms. After approximately three hours, we reach Phakding (2651mt) where you can spend your day browsing through the tea houses run by Sherpas.

Day 2 : Trek to Namche Bazaar 

After breakfast, you will begin your journey towards Namche Bazaar (3,440 mt). An easy walk to Monjo will take you through the pine trees and glimpses of distant snow-capped peaks. You will encounter few impressive waterfalls and yaks along the way taking necessary foods and other essentials for the trekkers as well as the locals. You will pass through the checkpoint before reaching Monjo where the officials check your permits. All trekkers to this region require TIMS cards and National Park Entry Fee. After this you officially enter the Sagarmatha National Park and a little way up the trail, you arrive in Monjo where you will stop for lunch.

After lunch, you start your trek through the valley crossing the river via a high suspension bridge. Right after the bridge is the upward climb towards Namche Bazar (3,440 mt). An hour and a half long, the ascent to Namche is famous amongst locals as ‘Namche Ko Ukalo’ meaning the uphill of Namche. About an hour before reaching Namche your hard work will be rewarded by your first view of Everest. 

Day 3 : Acclimatisation Day 

Being situated at a high altitude, Namche Bazaar serves as an acclimatisation stop for climbers to avoid altitude sickness. Namche Bazaar is the main centre of the Khumbu region and is facilitated with government offices, internet, ATM’s, restaurants and a colourful market. Explore the real charm of Namche Bazaar by interacting with the locals and haggling over prices for souvenirs. You can also observe the traditional life of Sherpas and enjoy the flora and fauna found at such high altitudes.

Day 4 : Trek to Tengboche 

Today we head towards the biggest monastery of the Everest region located at Tengboche (3870mt) which takes roughly five to six hours. It encloses within Sagarmatha National Park which is listed as a UNESCO world heritage site. The trek to Phunki will be easy, but from thereon ascending will become relatively harder. The panoramic view of the Himalayas from the monastery shows us a divine universe built under the same range. Immerse yourselves in the various religious ceremonies that takes place in the monastery.

Day 5 : Trek to Dingboche 

With a magnificent view of a rhododendron forest followed by a bridge over the raging Imja Khola (River), we ascend towards Dingboche (4360mt). We’ll pass the valley wall and then the plains to Pangboche village, the biggest settlement of the Sherpa in the region. Taking around six hours to reach Dingboche, this trek is a great opportunity to have lunch with and mingle with the locals; Sherpas.

Day 5 : Acclimatisation at Dingboche

Before advancing forward, today we’ll rest our legs and help our body settle with the increasing altitude. Optional trek to the Valley will pay off with rewarding views, but taking it easy for today is the important thing. Although, we can climb a ridge located behind the village and see six of the world’s tallest peaks including Lhotse, Makalu and Cho Oyu, the trekkers are advised not to strain themselves.

Day 6 : Trek To Lobuche (4600mt)

From here on forth, the trek will be gradually more challenging due to the high altitude. By trekking steep to the top of a high hill, we will be passing Dughla (Thukla). Before reaching Dughla, we trek across a wide pass which is a much-wanted change from walking in a straight line. The company of Himalayas will be on all sides on our trek; bask in their beauty. After crossing Dughla, the trail passes through boulder-strewn slopes. As the trail drops to the Khumbu Glacier moraine, we find ourselves facing great peaks before eventually reaching Lobuche (4600mt) after five hours of arduous walking.

Day 7: Trek To Gorakhshep and Visit the Everest Base Camp 

The distance between Lobuche and Gorakshep(5170mt) is 4.5 km and will take approximately two hours to reach. We will take the trail through the once vast Gorakshep Lake. We pass through rocky dunes, moraine, and streams and head out towards narrow tracks which are of few feet wide and few hundred meters above the ground.

From Gorakshep, it is approximately 3.4km to the Base Camp taking about three hours to reach. As you walk across the rocks towards the many prayer flags that mark the spot, you will arrive at the Everest Base Camp(5364mt). During the expedition season, many of the groups are settled here in their respective camps awaiting their climb to the highest mountain in the world. You can even interact with some of them. Enjoy the breath-taking views and celebrate it by taking many wonderful pictures. After resting for some time, we head back towards Gorakshep for the night.

Day 8 : Gorakshep To Kala Patthar To Pheriche 

Kala Patthar’s altitude is often given as 5550mt but the hill, further along, is a little bit higher. One fact is that you do not see the top of Kala Patthar from Gorakshep, only a false summit which is much lower. It is a fairly tiring walk up there unless you are well acclimatized. Kala Patthar is the best place to get the most lifelike pictures of the Everest. The views from the summit are extremely memorable. As always the descent is the easiest and this case is no different. Then we advance towards Pheriche(2488mt) through a route which is fairly easy. This whole trek takes roughly seven to eight hours to finish.

Day 9 : Pheriche To Namche Bazaar 

The way back to Tengboche is mainly downhill from Pheriche. Although a descent, it requires about an hour scaling a hill so we will be reaching Namche approximately in the late afternoon and right in time for dinner.

Day 10 : Namche Bazaar To Lukla

After spending a night at Namche, we will begin our journey back towards Lukla. The trekking though the trail will be exciting as well as easier this time as it will go through the forest of rhododendron and pines. We will pass Monjo after a short walk and then to Phakding. We stay on the same trail and advance towards Nurning and after approximately eight hours of the trek we will finally be reaching Lukla.

Day 11 : Flight Back To Kathmandu

Enjoy the last views of the high mountains while flying back to the Kathmandu from Lukla. The snow-capped mountains from the vantage point of the planes will be worth to watch. 

 

Highlights

• Tengboche monastery

• Namche Bazar- a gateway to Mount Everest

• Khumbu Glacier

• Kala Patthar- the highest point of the trek- a vantage point for the Everest view

• Visit a school established by Sir Edmund Hillary in Khumjung village

Lowlights

• No variations in trek routes. The routes, landscapes are almost similar in the overall               trek.

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