Mount Everest – perhaps the only mountain known by everyone, sporty or nerdy, adventurous or prudent. Being the highest mountain above sea level on Earth, many mountaineers mark conquering the 8,848m on their bucket list, with some managed to make it, some sadly gave their lives away. The risk involved is a setback for most people who wish to enjoy the picturesque Everest scenery. But now, there is a moderate alternative for common folks – The Everest Base Camp Trek.
Uniqueness of the Trek
Everest Base Camp Trekking is a once in a lifetime experience. With an elevation of 5,634m and approximately 65km long from Lukla to EBC (130km around), you can fully experience the sublimation of nature with the promise of breathtaking ice falls, panoramic mountain views and massive glaciers. Besides the scenery, during the stay in villages and exploration in different monasteries, you will have the chance to have an in-depth understanding on the Sherpa’s unique way of living and the deep linkage of their lives and the mountains.
Trekking seasons for the EBC
It is hard to determine the best trekking time as different people have different expectations and preferences. But generally speaking, the two distinct trekking seasons would be Spring (Feb – June) and Autumn (September – December). Not only in Everest region trekking these times are best for all trekking routes in Nepal Himalayas.
Spring Feb – June
With winter has just come to an end, the air fresh, the sky clear and the mountain tips covered by snow, Spring is a good choice for the EBC trek. For hills above 3,500m, they would be all covered by snow as well. There may be short showers, yet most days are warm and sunny. It is also the most vibrant period for Everest summits so there is a high chance for you to bump into bold climbers and summiteers.
Autumn Sep – Dec
After the monsoon and before the cold sets in, this period is perfect to trek if you are looking for the panaromic view of the mountains. The sky is cloudless with lush plants shimmering under the gentle sunshine. Although the snow is less than that of the Spring season, it is the best time for the crystal clear view. The temperature is perfect as well – not scorching hot during the day and durably cool at night.
In October and November, the big colorful Mani Rimdu festival is celebrated in the Everest region. Participating in it would definitely add colors to your trip.
Reason for not going onto a solo trek
Although many people know English in tourist places like Kathmandu, Pokhara and Nagarkort, it is totally different story in the mountain regions. Normally villagers living along the trekking route do not speak nor understand English. In case help is needed during sickness, it is always better to have a local around. With an experienced trekking guide, he could also provide you professional assistance along the trek. Therefore, before deciding to go onto the trek, do consult a travel agency and get a guide with you. Nepal government also publishes rules to ban solo trekkers in various regions.
How to prepare yourself for the trekking
Although the EBC trek is a lot easier than the summit itself, trekking continuously for two weeks and going up to 5,634m is still not an easy deal. It requires a certain amount of physical fitness and determination. Here is our suggestions on what to do and prepare in order to enjoy the trek to the fullest.
Although this trek is not a technical climb, the physical challenge should not be underestimated. Your body needs time to get prepared. It is advised to start training 3-6 months before the trek. The general tips to-be mentioned would not go wrong, but before you decide to go for the EBC trek and make a detailed training plan, it is the best to consult your doctor and have your body fully examined.
- Cardiovascular training is a must since it prepares your body to withstand the oxygen-deprived situation at high altitudes. Any cardio training will do – swimming, running or cycling. It is also a good idea to carry some weights during your training to increase your endurance level and to get prepared for the actual trekking situation.
- Go to do some small trekking with your backpack on. During the EBC trek, you have to hike for about 5 hours a day. Have a taste of trekking beforehand and get adapted to the ascent and descent can get you both mentally and physically prepared.
- Building muscle strength is a key to success. Long walks engage leg muscles – train them with squats, lunges or stair master etc. Upper body and core is important as well if you want to carry your own backpack. You will find all those sit-ups, pull-ups, push-ups rewarding.
With the thinner air at higher altitudes, altitude sickness or acute mountain syndrome can occur. The result could be headaches, shortness of breath or even death. Here are the things you should be aware of during the trek:
- Slow pace
During the trek, always be aware of your pace. Keep it steady and slow to let your body gradually adapt to the decreased level of oxygen.
- Drink water
At high altitude, water lost through respiration is quicker and sweat evaporation is hardly noticeable. Drink at least 3 to 4 liters a day to stay hydrated.
- Take medicine with you
Consult your doctor and take preventive medication with you.
The trek last for at least two weeks and it can be tough and challenging. Getting prepared physically is not enough – after all, attitude determines altitude. With courage, determination and persistence, EBC trek can be a wonderful lifetime experience.
Estimated Cost of the trek
Everest Base Camp trek 15 days costs approximately starts from USD $1,000 with all permits, transportation, food and accommodation covered. Note: This cost is for budget trekking package. Traveler can customize their package as per their requirement of (duration, hotel accommodation)
Ready to go?
We hope you found this article useful. You have made the first move to answer the call of mountains and let us take care of the rest. We can also customize your trip and prepare a tailor-made itinerary accordingly. Please feel free to give us a call for any inquiries.