Mount Everest Erudite: Everything you need to know about the Everest Base Camp Trek

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Typically starting with a short flight to Lukla from Kathmandu, the Everest Base Camp Trek follows a trail that passes through many villages and small towns in the Khumbu region. Initially moving along the Cheplung Village, the presence of the mountains become known from the first sight of the Khumbila Peak in the distance. Further on, Kusum Kangraru- a name that means “the three snow-white gods” in the Sherpa language, decorates the skyline in Phakding. Namche Bazaar is a famous and important destinations in the EBC Trek. Lying within the Sagarmatha Zone, Namche Bazaar is the main trading site between Nepalese and Tibetan traders. Because of Namche’s strategic location, it has become the central hub of the Khumbu region and a very popular settlement for acclimatization during the trekking journey. Most of the Sherpa people who are into the tourism business tend to hail from Namche. It is also the most expensive place in Nepal. Because of its beautiful topographical features, Namche Bazaar offers magnificent views of the mountain peaks. Immediately west of Namche lies the Kongdi RI Himal; and to the west is the Thamserku Peak. On a hill over-looking Namche Bazaar is the Syangboche Airport- the highest located airport in the world. Although the Syangboche Airport is no longer used for commercial flights, it has garnered the appeal of tourism because of its location. Namche Bazaar is the gateway to the high Himalayas. The town has a number of lodgings and stores catering to the needs of visitors undergoing trekking in the region. There is also an Everest Photo Gallery and a Sherpa Culture Museum in Namche.

Tengboche

From Namche Bazaar, the trail continues to the Dudh Koshi Valley at Phunki Thanka and moves towards Tengboche. Situated at the Khumjung inside the Sagarmatha National Park, Tengboche houses the largest Buddhist Gompa in the region- the Tengboche Monastery. A gorgeous panoramic view of the Himalayan Mountains, including the well-known peaks of Tawache, Everest, Nuptse, Lhotse, Ama Dablam, and the Thamserku can be seen from here. Ancient scriptures of Tibet also refer to Tengboche as a sacred place. The Tengboche Monastery has acquired more international interest as it is on the route to the Base Camp of Everest for routes made via the Khumbu Icefall and the West Ridge. Everest expeditioners visit the monastery to light candles and seek the blessings of the gods for good health and safe mountaineering. John Hunt, the leader of the 1953 expedition, described Tengboche as one of the most beautiful place in the world that provides a grandstand beyond comparison for the finest mountain scenery ever seen, whether in the Himalaya or elsewhere. Located on a hill at the confluence of the Dudh Kosi and the Imja Khola rivers, Tengboche presents the sight of the snowy peak of Ama Dablam and the tip of Everest that glows from the Nuptse ridge and several other peaks during the winter. During the spring, the hill slopes around Tengboche are covered with blossoming Rhododendron flowers.

The Base Camp

From Tengboche, the trail continues forward to Dingboche- known as the Summer Valley. Graceful views of the Lhotse and the Island Peak can be seen from Dingboche, along with the placement of many Mani stone walls and carvings. The village is used for acclimatization. Nagerjun lies just above Dingboche and while spending an acclimatizing day at Dingboche, travelers can visit Nagerjun for amazing sights of the Lobuche East peak, the Lobuche West, the Kangtega Himal and the Taboche Peak. Pristine weather also allows the glimpse of Mount Makalu as well. Further on from here is the Lobuche village. While on the trail, trekkers can pass by the Trekkers Aid Post at Pheriche, run by the Western Volunteer Doctors and assisted by The Himalayan Rescue Association. The Aid Post helps in the treatment of trekkers in the mountain. Walking down to the Khumbu Glacier Moraine, views of the Khumbutse Peak, the Lingtren Himal and Mount Pumori are wonderful. The Nuptse Peak also looms ahead after passing the glacier at Lobuche. It takes about three to four hours to reach the Base Camp from Lobuche.

Kalapatthar

Trekkers usually also visit Kalapatthar while journeying to the Base Camp of Everest. A very popular vantage point in the Everest region, Kalapatthar offers the most spectacular and mesmerizing views of the Everest Mountain massif. The name “Kalapatthar” translates to “Black Rock” in Nepali. Providing the most accessible close-up view of Mount Everest, Kalapatthar’s ascent begins at Gorakshep, the original base camp for Mount Everest. Festooned with colorful prayer flags, the vantage point blesses views of Everest, Nuptse and Changtse and there are glimpses of the northern flank and summit of Lhotse as well.

Best Seasons for Trekking

Nepal experiences four seasons all year round, with varying degrees of strength. Spring and autumn seasons are considered the best trekking seasons. The months of March to May experiences spring while the months of September to December experiences autumn. While trekking in Nepal in the spring, the terrain is brimming with natural blooms and blossoming rhododendrons. Autumn season harbors quiet and melancholic vibe in the atmosphere, with the changing colors of the foliage and clear views of the mountain peaks.

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