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Heading to Everest Base Camp! Any advice from others?

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Heading to Everest Base Camp! Any advice from others?

Postby draney5 » Wed Jan 30, 2013 11:51 pm

I'm heading out in April, and would love to hear some comparisons to a 14er hike as far as weather, gear, acclimatization days, etc, go. Thanks in advance!

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Re: Heading to Everest Base Camp! Any advice from others?

Postby Yoric » Thu Jan 31, 2013 1:17 pm

Expect it to be dry, just like Colorado. You'll most likely be fairly hot for the first few days with cool mornings. Shorts and short sleeve shirts are perfect. As you gain elevation it will gradually get colder and possibly consistent below freezing temps. Be sure to bring rain gear, although you may not need it. Stock up on some of your favorite snacks while in Kathmandu because they only get more expensive and harder to find in the tea houses.

Your days will be 6 to 8 hours long, but not as hard as a day climbing a 14er. Be sure to bring a good camera, enjoy the mountains, and most of all the company of the good natured locals.

If you plan to hire a guide or porter I would HIGHLY recommend waiting until you're in Kathmandu. Expect $10 to $12 per day for a porter or $12 to $15 for a guide.

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Re: Heading to Everest Base Camp! Any advice from others?

Postby gdthomas » Thu Jan 31, 2013 1:51 pm

Agree with the previous poster. No one day will be harder than a class 1 14er. Expect to gain 1,500 to 2,000 vertical feet per day from starting to ending point (not including elevation gains and losses along the way) hiking mostly along yak trails. The latitude of EBC is about the same as Tampa, Florida so treeline is 14,000' and permanent snowline is 16,000'. EBC is 17,500'. If you pass through Namche Bazaar, you can find just about anything you need that you didn't bring from Kathmandu. If your current altitude record is a 14er, you'll break that record once you reach the village of Pheriche assuming your trek takes you in that direction. I was just there in October so things are still pretty fresh in my mind. PM me with additional questions if you'd like. Also, you can read this:

http://www.14ers.com/php14ers/tripreport.php?trip=13119&stext=Nepal&cpgm=tripmain&ski=Include

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Re: Heading to Everest Base Camp! Any advice from others?

Postby Scott P » Thu Jan 31, 2013 2:44 pm

My son and I just got back four weeks ago. I agree with the above sentiments.

I'd probably wait until Lukla to get a porter if you can (though when you are going is the busy season). A guide will not be needed. Having two porters for your group is good so one doesn't get lonely.

Anyway, don't miss the side trips.

Thame Gompa, Ama Dablam Basecamp, Ama Dablam Lakes, Island Peak Basecamp, etc. are all really great side trips and are must do's. Taboche Basecamp is also really good.

Extra peaks to climb include Jaro Ri, Hamugon, Nangkartshang, and Chhukhung Ri to name a few. All are very worthwhile. Hamugon is harder than any Colorado 14er (you can still go to the first little summit without scrambling), but the others are walk ups (except for the second peak of Chhukhung which has some scrambling at the end). We actually climbed 12 peaks when we were there, but the ones mentioned are best.

Besides the popular Kala Pattar and Gokyo Ri) here is information on some of the other worthwhile peaks:

http://www.summitpost.org/hamugon/833450

http://www.summitpost.org/nangkartshang-peak/833597

http://www.summitpost.org/chukkung-ri-chhukung-ri/154131

This one is good too, but not quite in the same league as the above:

http://www.summitpost.org/jaro-ri/833867

Get the following book as it covers not only the main trail (like the rest of the guidebooks do), but just about every little side trip as well:

http://www.amazon.com/Trekking-Everest-Region-5th-Kathmandu/dp/1873756992/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1359665014&sr=8-2&keywords=trekking+everest

Have a great time; the mountains are absolutely spectacular. Nothing in Colorado even comes remotely close.
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Re: Heading to Everest Base Camp! Any advice from others?

Postby Taillon75 » Thu Jan 31, 2013 5:25 pm

Be careful when you arrive at KTM. Don't let anyone touch your luggage. If someone carry's your gear they want money.
Do not drink the water! You will get sick.
Have your Doctor write you a script for Diamox. If you get altitude sickness... Take one and start back down.
Don't drink any "Rice Beer" on the way up......
You can wear a good pair of trekking shoes/sneakers for you daily travels. The trail is essentially a dirt highway...
You will have an awesome time! Just take your time.
Last edited by Taillon75 on Thu Jan 31, 2013 5:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Heading to Everest Base Camp! Any advice from others?

Postby Scuba Steve » Thu Jan 31, 2013 5:28 pm

Approximately how much does it cost to get to Base Camp?

Always something I wanted to do, but thought it was likely out of my price range.

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Re: Heading to Everest Base Camp! Any advice from others?

Postby jsdratm » Thu Jan 31, 2013 5:44 pm

REI has a trip that goes there and would probably cost around $6000 with your airfare included

http://www.rei.com/adventures/trips/asia/nepal_everest.html

I'm sure you could do it cheaper going solo and hiring some guides and porters, but it depends on your traveling style.

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Re: Heading to Everest Base Camp! Any advice from others?

Postby Scott P » Thu Jan 31, 2013 5:53 pm

Approximately how much does it cost to get to Base Camp?


As mentioned, we were just there a few weeks ago.

Our 30 day trip cost us about $2500 a person, but that included a lot more than Basecamp. Nepal isn't as cheap as it used to be (our previous trip was in 2001-2002).

If we just went to basecamp, the 18 day trek portion + travel time of that trip would have been as follows:

Airfare to Kathmandu = $1500
Porter = $270
Lodging and food = $250 (if you buy lots of beer and stuff, this will be higher)
Extras = $36
Airfare to Lukla = $150
Hotel in Kathmandu = $12 a night
Trekking permits = $32
Misc. Kathmandu expenses (taxi, food, siteseeing etc.) = $50

Total = $2300 including all airfare. Of course you could spend more or less than this, but it's a good ball park figure. We spent $200 extra on for a trip to Chitwan. If you don't go to places like Chitway, take a few hundred dollars for other stuff anyway.

PS, if your profile pic is a photo of you, then know that Everest Basecamp is way cheaper than Patagonia.
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Re: Heading to Everest Base Camp! Any advice from others?

Postby sstratta » Thu Jan 31, 2013 8:55 pm

Great advice so far, I'll add a few of my thoughts. While yes, shorts and a t-shirt might be fine for down low, don't underestimate the weather...it could definitely snow when you are up higher, and you'll want some warm clothes. Plus, it can get sorta cold in the teahouses at night. What else. Some sort of mask is good to have for Kathmandu, the dust and exhaust there is pretty nasty. Someone mentioned not drinking "rice beer"...while yes, it is a good idea not to drink a lot when you are heading up to EBC, Chang (rice beer) is a big part of Sherpa culture and I found that by partaking in it occasionally with the locals I was able to have some pretty amazing cultural experiences just by being part of their nightly social life. This is somewhat easier when you are solo and can more easily get invited into people's homes along the way, but regardless, I would try and learn about and experience the Sherpa culture as much as possible. It might just change your life. That being said, they consider it rude if you don't finish ALL of your food/drink, so in order to only have one cup, drink it verrry slowly! As far as guides and porters go...it depends on how much you want to spend and what kind of experience you want to have. The cheapest way to do it is to obviously not hire either one (though depending on your situation this might not be advised). You can find some great guides when you arrive in Kathmandu, but you can also find some not-so-great ones. When I was trekking I met lots of other tourists who had horrible guides...you really want to do your research beforehand and not just settle for someone who appears to know what they're doing off the street. I could give you a few contacts of trustworthy guides and porters I know over there that would be happy to have your business. If money is not a concern, going through an international guiding agency or group will be the most well-organized and reliable, however, you may miss out on some of the cultural experience. Expect to be sick part of the time you are over there...thanks to our sanitized American environment our digestive and immune systems simply cannot handle a lot of what is over there. Someone already mentioned that you should drink only treated or bottled water, which is true, but even the food preparation and living environments can make you sick. It's kind-of unavoidable, so I recommend maybe bringing some Cipro pills and just trying to deal with it as best you can...don't let it ruin your trek. Lastly, give yourself extra days for travel...don't expect to fly in/out of Lukla on your scheduled day. Planes don't fly if the weather is bad (or even if it's just cloudy), and you will be stranded there until it gets better. When I was there some tourists were stuck in Lukla for 12 days. There is always the option of adding on a week to your trek and going in/out of Jiri if you don't want to fly...I actually highly recommend doing this if you can, it's pretty amazing. Anyways, I could go on forever about this stuff, but if you want any more info let me know!

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Re: Heading to Everest Base Camp! Any advice from others?

Postby mts4602 » Fri Feb 01, 2013 2:21 pm

How many days door to door is a minimum for this trek?
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Re: Heading to Everest Base Camp! Any advice from others?

Postby MUni Rider » Fri Feb 01, 2013 10:41 pm

mts4602 wrote:How many days door to door is a minimum for this trek?


14 days is a normal outfitter timeline, but they will shorten it a few days if peoples schedules require it. They won't speed through it much so you can aclimate, but why hurry unless you are running the marathon back down, in which case, you will be back down to Namche in under 4 hours if you win. :shock:

http://www.everestmarathon.org.uk/index.php/previous-races
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Re: Heading to Everest Base Camp! Any advice from others?

Postby lazy climber » Thu Feb 28, 2013 11:15 am

There is a web site called Trekinfo.com, has a lot of great information.

I would hire porters out of Lukla, treat all of your water with aqua mira, see a travel clinic before you leave to make sure you have all your vacinations and meds. You need your own toilet paper as there is none on the trail ( can be bought). The trails are nice, you do not go very far each day but believe it or not the elevation gains does make you work, other wise go like you are travelling to a third world country and hiking at elevation in a remote region for a few weeks.

If you have more questions you can email me, I am going mid march thru mid april for a trek and climb, I am going as a "guide" and have gone thru all this with the clients already.

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