26 Apr, 2019 Great Nepal Treks
Everest base camp trek refers to two base camps on opposite sides of Mount Everest. South Base Camp is in Nepal at an altitude of 5,364 metres (17,598 ft), while North Base Camp is in Tibet at 5,150 metres (16,900 ft). These camps are rudimentary campsites on Mount Everest that are used by mountain climbers during their ascent and descent. South Base Camp is used when climbing via the southeast ridge, while North Base Camp is used when climbing via the northeast ridge.
Supplies are shipped to the South Base Camp by Sherpas or porters, and with the help of animals, usually yaks. The North Base Camp has vehicle access specially for the summer months. Climbers typically rest at base camp for several days for acclimatization to reduce the risks and severity of altitude sickness.
The Everest Base Camp trek on the south side is one of the most popular trekking routes in the Himalayas and is visited by thousands of trekkers each year. Trekkers usually fly from Kathmandu to Lukla to save time and energy before beginning the trek to this base camp. However, trekking to Lukla is possible. There are no roads from Kathmandu to Lukla and as a result, the only method of transporting large and heavy goods is by plane.
From Lukla, climbers trek upward to the Sherpa capital of Namche Bazaar, 3,440 metres, following the valley of the Dudh Kosi river. It takes about two days to reach the village, which is a central hub of the area. Typically at this point, climbers allow a day of rest for acclimatization. They then trek another two days to Dingboche, 4,260 metres before resting for another day for further acclimatization. Another two days takes them to Everest Base Camp via Gorakshep, the flat field below Kala Pathar, 5,545 metres and Mt. Pumori.
A visit to the North (China-side) Base Camp currently requires a permit from the Chinese Government, on top of the permit required to visit Tibet itself. Such permits must be arranged via travel companies in Lhasa as part of a package tour that include hiring a vehicle, driver, and guide. The North Base Camp is accessed by vehicle through a 100 km road branching to the South from the Friendship Highway near Shelkar. From the Base Camp, all tourists must take the buses managed by the government to limit the traffic in the last stretch of gravel road to a marked hill at 5,200 meters above sea level just before the climbers’ camp. It is also possible to trek up from the tourist camp, but only when properly acclimatized. The "tourist Base Camp" is located about halfway between Rongbuk monastery; the actual climbers' Base Camp is at the foot of Rongbuk glacier.
Day 1: Arrival in Kathmandu
You can explore the city of riotous charm; a perfect mix of chaos and calm.
Day 2: Short flight to Lukla –Trek to Phakding
On the second day, you will begin your journey with a breath-taking Himalayan flight to Lukla. Lukla is a small town perched on a mountainside and has an airport with a single runway.
After this scenic flight, you’ll again set off via blooming rhododendrons, magnolia trees, and pine forests to Phakding.
Once you reach Phakding, you can visit the local monastery. Rest of the time make sure to take good rest and be ready for the real challenge ahead!
Day 3: Trek to Namche Bazaar
On the third day, you will be heading towards Namche Bazaar. The trek begins with a walk ascending via beautiful pine forests along the banks of Dudh Koshi river. You will cross the Hillary Suspension Bridge, named after the iconic Sir Edmund Hillary.
You will again walk into Sagarmatha National Park, here you will get to see some rare wild species such as Himalayan Bear, Thur, Red Panda, and many more.
Live the moment! Here you will get the first view of Mt. Everest.
After reaching Namche Bazaar, you will rest for the night. Better known as the gateway to Mt. Everest, Namche Bazaar is the main trading centre of Khumbu region.
Day 4: Acclimatization day trip to Namche Bazaar
On the fourth day, you will take a rest day in Namche.
But actually, there will not be any rest at all. You will get a chance to adjust your body to the altitude. You need to also follow the advice “hike high and sleep low”. To adjust to higher altitude you have to hike to a higher elevation and then return to sleep at a lower elevation.
For acclimatization, you will take a day trip to Namche Bazaar. Here you will climb 300 meters to the town of Khumjung.
You will also visit some local schools and a Buddhist monastery and spend the night at Namche Bazaar.
Day 5: Trek to Tengboche
On the fifth day, the trail begins after walking across the stone steps to reach the Mongla Pass at an altitude of 3,975 m.
From here, you can get an awesome view of Mt. Ama Dablam, Mt. Thamserku, and Mt. Khumbila. All these mountains are regarded by Sherpas as sacred mountain of the patron god of the Khumbu region.
Tengboche is famous for the largest monastery of the Khumbu region. You will visit this monastery and receive a blessing. You will meet climbers who just came to receive a blessing before attempting the summit of Everest.
You can also read special prayers for the safety and success of the safe trek from the head lamas. And, in expedition season you may also get chance to greet those preparing for the Everest expeditions.
Day 6: Trek to Dingboche
On the sixth day, you will continue through lush alpine forests. You will come across several small villages on the path. Here you will get a great opportunity to see how the local Nepalese live.
Passing via the Khumbila Khola valley and ascending towards the ridgeline, you will be awe-stricken by the surrounding landscapes. You will witness the jaw-dropping mountain: Mt. Taboche, Mt. Nuptse, Mt. Cholatse, and many others.
While you reach Dingboche, you will notice the landscape started to change. Treeline will be replaced with low shrub and a desert feel. You’ll love seeing the landscape changes.
Day 7: Acclimatization day trip to Dingboche.
The seventh day is your second acclimatization day and you will trek up a steep mountain to allow yourself to acclimatize.
The trail is quite, steep, and rocky at points, but at every turn, the vistas become more spectacular.
You will get some amazing views of Ama Dablam and other giant peaks with prayer flags at the viewpoint. If you wish and time allows you, you can climb another hour or to the top of the hill for even better views.
After admiring the view you’ll again retrace back to Dingboche and take rest for a few hours. You will spend a night at Dingboche.
Day 8: Trek to Lobuche
On the eight day, you will head towards Lobuche via the steep terminal moraine left by the Khumbu Glacier. Gently, you will pass huge boulders displaced by the glacier.
You might feel little difficult while climbing uphill but don’t worry the jaw-dropping mountain views will keep you motivated.
At the top of the hill, there are numerous memorials for climbers who have lost their lives climbing Mt. Everest. You can spend some time there and commemorate their daring decision to choose Everest expedition.
After climbing for some time you will reach to Lobuche. Here you will find a small cluster of lodges and you will be almost at your highest altitude. You will spend your night at Lobuche.
Day 9: Trek to Everest Base Camp – back to Gorak Shep
Finally, the most awaited day of the whole journey! You will climb to EBC. On a ninth day, you will have to wake up early in the morning and move towards Gorak Shep, another small outpost of lodging. Actually, it was the original base camp in the 1953 expedition, the last before EBC.
As you continue the trail to Gorak Shep, the Khumbu Glacier will come into view soon. As you come near the Gorak Shep, the trail will become rough as you’ll be walking over a large rock, up and down.
After you reach Gorak Shep, you will take some rest and drop your backpack at Gorak Shep and move onward to EBC. Slowly walking at your own pace is recommended to prevent the high altitude sickness problem.
Slowly, you will approach the top of the Khumbu Glacier and soon you will get a view of the Khumbu Icefall.
After few hours of a hike, you will be at the site where so much history has been made, Everest Base Camp at an altitude of 5,364 m. The experience will intensify you more by the sense of achievement of making it up here. This Everest Base Camp Trek is indeed your adventure for a lifetime!
Then, you will descend down the lateral moraine of the Khumbu Glacier, you will take down your way to Gorak Shep and spend overnight.
Day 10: Hike up to Kala Pattar then trek to Pheriche
On the tenth day, you will hike to the highest point of your trek, Kala Pattar.
The one real fact is Mt. Everest cannot be seen from Base Camp, as the Mt. Lhotse sits right in front of it. So, it is considered the best viewpoint in the entire Khumbu region.
From the top of the hill, you will have 360-degree views of Himalayan giants like Khumbutse, Changtse, Lhotse, Nuptse, and of course Mt. Everest!
The views from the top is incredible and breath-taking!
Once you have captured all your moment, you will start heading towards Pheriche and stay the night there.
Day 11: Trek to Namche Bazaar
On the eleventh day of your Everest Base Camp Trek, you will reverse your steps from day 1 and 2 from the beginning of your trek as you will head down the massive hill before Namche.
You will start your hike with gentle up and down hills. Again, you will cross suspension bridges and pass through small villages. Here you will meet other trekkers heading towards the opposite direction.
After a few hours of a hike, you will reach Namche Bazaar, the capital city of Khumbu valley. After arriving here, you will have a huge relief. For obvious reason, there are lots of lodges, cafe, restaurants, and different shops. Here you can celebrate your accomplishment. You will spend the night at Namche Bazaar.
Day 12: Namche to Lukla
On the twelfth day, you will trek back and it will be your last day of the walk. Again, you will descend further down crossing several suspension bridges.
Trekking further all the way to Dudh Koshi river, you will arrive at Phakding. You will have some rest here and follow small ascend to Lukla.
Here, you can again enjoy some best cuisine and hot shower. This will be the final day in Everest region and you will spend your last night of Everest Base Camp Trek in Lukla.
Day 13: Fly back to Kathmandu
On thirteen day, you will return back to Kathmandu from Lukla by twin-otter plane. Once again, you will be facing off with dramatic scenery on the way back.
You can enjoy the final views of these amazing snow-capped peaks. After arriving at Kathmandu you can spend the rest of day in Kathmandu celebrating your success. If you want you can explore the city and do shopping for your loved ones and relatives.
Day 14: Departure, or extend your tour for other activities in Nepal
With final goodbyes, you will be heading back to your home. You will surely take many wonderful adventurous moments with yourself. Also, if you like to extend your vacations and stay in Nepal.
Here are some items that are easily accessible while you are on the trail. It’s pretty easy to buy water bottles and snacks from the tea houses along the trail. Weather conditions can change fast so even if it’s warm and sunny in the morning bring some warm layers and a poncho that covers yourself and day pack in case of rain or snow.
Pre-monsoon and post-monsoon periods are best to plan your Everest Base Camp Trek. You must avoid monsoon and rain for the trek as it becomes a bit scary. For more details you can read Everest Base Camp Trek-Best Time of Year.
The cost of Everest Base Camp Trek is very affordable for such a lifetime adventurous experience. The Everest Base Camp Trek packages are very much cost effective and affordable.
This year just plan your Everest Base Camp Trek and be ready for the most thrilling and once in a lifetime adventure.