5 GREAT TIPS BEFORE TREKKING TO MOUNT EVEREST BASE CAMP IN NEPAL
Everest Base Camp route is well known destination to every mountain trekking enthusiasts and considered as one of the most adventurous and epic trails in the world. Nepal offers several amazing trekking destinations; and Everest is one of those people would rather put in on their bucket list first. Every year hundreds of thousand trekking adventurous from the world make their journey to Mount Everest’s base camp. I have below descried the 5 great Tips before heading to Mount Everest Base Camp in Nepal.
Be as fit as you can; else you won’t enjoy the trekking as much; it will get harder if you get sick. It’s multi-day and non-stop trek, you will get to the high elevation every day and can have some symptoms of getting sick if you are not fit enough for the high altitude trekking. Do some jogging, short hiking before you head to the Everest and is suggested not to drink alcohol and stay vegetarian for the few days before the trip and during the entire trip. Get your good clothing stuffs and gears from home decent outfitters and some cheaper stuffs from Thamel, Kathmandu. Buy/hire sleeping bag, get nice decent trekking shoes, down jacket, rain coat, and head light and other necessary stuffs before you fly to Lukla. Buying stuffs in Namche or other local towns can be expensive. Check the list of Hiring/Buying Trek gears in Kathmandu for more details.
Nepal Arrival Info & Lukla Flight
Before you fly to Nepal, always choose the right hand side with the window so that you can see Everest and other popular peaks. If the weather is good, you can have amazing glimpse of several mountains and make your first impression good. Buy SIM card upon your arrival at the airport with internet data package and get your cash handy (USD or NPR) before the trek starts.
The flight time to Lukla is about 35 minutes and flight starts early in the morning. It is always suggested to look for an early ones as flights can be delayed or cancelled due to the unpredictable weather or moving clouds. Be prepared yourself for long and tiresome waiting at the airport and sometimes it goes for a whole day. Get some snacks and water as buying inside the terminal is pretty expensive. The flight to Lukla is always fascinating and you can enjoy witnessing several Himalayan Peaks during the entire flight. Always fly to Lukla right after the day you arrive in Kathmandu instead of using time for day tours or sightseeing in the first few days; you can do this after the trip as well, allow some days in Kathmandu after the trekking to Everest base camp.
Accommodation, Meals, Drinking Water en-route
Major concerns during the trekking are always food, accommodation and drinking water. It is important to have basic ideas before the trek. People used to do camping in most of the places some years ago. Now, it is not necessary to camp en-route to Everest Base Camp as there is so much construction of new guest houses/tea houses going up through the valley. There are nice and clean tea houses with good varieties of food including western cuisine that can be prepared within a very short time. We suggest you bring water purification tablets; but sometimes it does not work even purifying water from the tap and make you sick. Just buy bottles of water or get boiled water from the restaurant, it is nearly 8-10 times expensive buying bottled water than you buy in Kathmandu but health is on the first priority. Although, empty water bottle has become major environmental concerns in Khumbu Region, You can also top up the mineral water or boiled water from every restaurant or tea houses. Buy some Diamox or anti-altitude medicine and other drugs prescribed by doctor at your home or in Kathmandu. Bring your first aid Kit or ask your guide to bring it before you fly to Lukla. Getting full of medicines helps you mentally prepared and keeps you away from negative thoughts of getting sick and altitude problems.
Arranging your Trekking
We strongly recommend go for trek with a local company and fully organized, you still have right to trek solo, though. Generally, there are four ways you can do the trek in Nepal; first: get individual TIMS/Permits and trek solo carrying everything yourself, second: hire a guide cum porter who carries 15/20 Kilos of your stuff and guide the way; third: hire porter only who just carry your bags (15/20 Kg) & fourth: get organized with booking whole package with locally registered trekking company. This will make you pay little more cost but you will be hassle free of everything. You will get proper attention and get prompt assistance while getting sick or need to get emergency evacuation from the mountain. Buy travel insurance policy that should include your helicopter rescue, medical and should be valid up to 6000m. WorldNomads.com is one of the best insurance companies that does insurance up to 6000m in the mountains.
Respect local culture and keep prayer flags on the right of your path
Prayer rocks, walls and flags are meant to be kept on the right as per the Buddhist tradition. It is kind of tradition to follow what the local people believe. Also, ask for taking photographs and many of the locals do not want their photos taken. Respecting the local tradition and cultural is always a great feeling and you can learn some more dos and don’ts with your local guide during the trekking as well.