Trekking is an adventure which lets you scale and hike up and down treacherous terrains of uneven lands where you have to trudge through scatterings of boulders, huge rocks and on occasions, heavy blankets of snow. Trekking all the way to the base camp of the world’s tallest mountain, Mount Everest seems daunting at first, but it is an awesome adventure, one that is filled with beguiling natural beauties, cultures and traditions of the Nepali people and the most wonderful of all- majestic view of the astronomical Mount Everest and its many surrounding peaks. In this article, explanations are done chronologically on the Everest Base Camp trek journey and why trekking to the Everest Base Camp is the ideal way to spend your holidays.
A short summery of the Everest region of Nepal
The Everest region of Nepal is one of the most famous regions in the country because of the presence of the world’s tallest mountain here. It is the focal area for trekkers and hikers, and caters to the tourism business very highly. Because of its gorgeous natural beauty, the tourism in the Everest region is plummeting, with increasing number of tourists visiting the region each year. The Everest region has wonderful environments; the surroundings are complimented with verdant forests of pine, cedar and birch and the sight of the blossoming rhododendron flowers, the national flower of Nepal, in colors of bright red, white and pink is utterly marvelous. There are big and small settlements in the Everest region, valleys lying in the bosom of tall hills and isolated villages. The majority of the people in the Everest region are Sherpa and Buddhist people and thus, the region has many monasteries, Gumbas and Bihars. There are lots of Mani-stone carvings that can be seen along the trekking routes, the golden spires of the monasteries will often be decorated with colorful Buddhist prayer flags swaying in the cold and crisp wind of the mountains. The people of the Everest region in Nepal are often involved in animal husbandry, and cattle herding is favorable because of wide lush pasturelands the region has. Yaks, sheep and mountain goats are some of the animals that the people have domesticated and dairy products from these animals, plus wools from the sheep and the yaks, are the major products that are traded by the people. Along with animal husbandry, tourism is another sector the people of the Everest region are heavily involved in. Because of the harsh weather condition and frozen soils, agriculture isn’t suitable here. But the natural beauty of the Everest region is simply brilliant. The terrain is adorned with the greens of jaded alpine forests and emerald foliages, soft caresses of flowers like foxgloves and wide expanses of orange and red poppies, with backdrops of colossal mountains covered in periwinkle snow under a cerulean sky makes the region a post-card perfect acreage. The Everest region also harbors winsome lakes like the Gokyo Lake with its celestial blue waters and the Gokyo RI, vast in its ultramarine pneumatics. Brilliant natural beauty, spiritual ambiance of the monasteries, diverse myriad of the traditions of the people and the elegant views of tall serene mountains enveloped in the tranquility the region makes the Everest region of Nepal one of the most beautiful places on Earth to visit. Trekking to the Base Camp of Mount Everest is the most famous trekking destination in the Everest region, and the trails leading to the base camp are also graced with stark natural sceneries and sublime views of the mountains, implicitly flattered with ivory and opal-like snow.
Inaugurating the Trekking Journey
From Kathmandu to Lukla
Kathmandu is the only metropolitan of Nepal at present, and is a bustling city that is rapidly going through modernization, but at the same time, still has its grasp on the old traditions and places that stemmed out in the old medieval times. You will start your Everest Base Camp Trekking journey from Kathmandu. Before flying to Lukla, you can have a sight-seeing tour of Kathmandu valley as well. There are many cultural sites in Kathmandu which are listed in the UNESCO World Heritage Site list. Sites like the Kathmandu Durbar Square has many old palaces and buildings from Nepal’s medieval monarchial era, their architecture unique and idiosyncratic with the Pagoda style architecture made famous by Araniko, a renowned Nepali architect who made Nepali architecture famous in medieval China ruled by Emperor Kublai Khan. The wooden carvings and stone inscriptions and the statues of the idols of Gods in the temples are utterly brilliant and beautiful, extremely intricate in their decorations and opulent in their quiddity. Along with Kathmandu Durbar Square, another famous sight-seeing destination in Kathmandu is the Pashupatinath Temple, the famous temple pertaining to people of Hindu religion. It is the largest temple dedicated to Lord Shiva and sees thousand of Hindu pilgrims each year for Shivaratri. The Bouddhanath Stupa is another destination in Kathmandu that you can visit. It is the largest Buddhist stupa in the world and you can circumbulate the stupa and feel its spiritual piousness in your very being.
From Kathmandu, a scenic flight to Lukla is taken, and this will be the commencement of the Everest Base Camp trekking journey. The scenic flight to Lukla provides the ever-radiant natural beauty of the land below from the window of the plane. The bustling city of Kathmandu fades behind and is replaced with long stretches of highway going through lush forests enveloping tall hills. The continuity of the green is contrasted by the fast-flowing rivers and streams. From the airplane, the river looks like a silver gash that has been cut by some omnipotent being on the land, and feels like the jovial river is bleeding milk and cool umber, carrying with it the life-essence of the land itself. The sun’s ray glimmers on the river surface and it looks like thousands of tiny glittering diamonds floating on the water body. As you reach near Lukla, you will be graced with the pinnacles of the mountains jutting out from the sea of timberwolf clouds as if they are trying to pierce the blue veil of the sky itself. The scene looks like it’s taken from a fairytale storybook.
Lukla to Namche Bazaar
The trekking begins from Lukla and the first little village that you will come across the trekking trail is the village of Cheplung. The Cheplung village presents a magnificent glimpse of Mount Khumbila, a scared peak which has not been climbed yet among the picturesque scenery of paradise-like surroundings. The forests around the Cheplung village are adorned with prayer flags, and the stone houses in the village standing in pretty rows in green moss-covered hills would make you feel like you’ve travelled back in time. As you move further along the trail, the view of Mount Kusum Kangraru looms up in the distance, touching the clouds, standing tall and proud in its vigil. Walking over suspension bridges with the Dudh Koshi River ebbing and flowing down below and massive hills on either sides of the bridge, you will reach the village of Phakding, one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites since 1979. Phakding is often the main stopping point for trekkers on their way to the Mount Everest Base Camp via the Gokyo RI route or the Tengboche route. The primary function of the village is to support the tourism industry, and as such, it has many numbers of guesthouses.
Passing the Jorsale Village, the trail to the Everest Base Camp continues through the Sagarmatha National Park, an exceptional area with many dramatic mountains blanketed by rich forests home to many endangered species of animals such as the snow-leopard and the Red Panda. Sagarmatha National Park is a well-known destination for mountain tourism encompassing over two thousand Sherpa people living in the peaks and the beautiful combination of culture and nature.
After the strenuous trek through the topography of the national park, you will be climbing higher up the elevations and will then reach the capitol of the Everest region, Namche Bazaar. Namche Bazaar was an important rendezvous point for merchants and traders from Nepal and Tibet in ancient times, and now is an important hub of the Khumbu region. Known as ‘The Gateway to Everest’, Namche Bazaar also has the Sherpa People Museum and the National Art Gallery, both of which provides in-depth knowledge and visual depictions of life of the Sherpa people in the Himalayas. The amethyst trekking trail in Namche begins to get dotted with snow, and the kobicha brown of the dirt changes gradually to eggshell white. Many Mani-stone wall carvings can be seen here, and while you are at Namche, you can have a visit to the Syangboche Airport as well, the airstrip located at the highest altitude in the world. Magnificent views of Mount Everest and Mount Lhotse can be seen from Namche, their quintessence peaceful in colors of honeydew and cyan.
The Tengboche monastery near the valley of Phungki Thanka at the Everest region is glorious and is the spiritual hub of the area. The monastery houses many Buddhist shrines and the saffron spire of the Gumba at the monastery is spectacular. The monastery is a hamlet which provides aesthetically pleasing sights of the mountains like the Ama Dablam, Lhotse and Island Peaks. The ‘summer valley’ of Dingboche is heavenly too, with its wide green meadows and florescence presence. The blossoming crimson rhododendrons, pastel pink astilbes, amber snapdragons and purple begonias fill the air with their coy aroma. It’s simply breath-taking in its beauty.
Namche to the Everest Base Camp
Trekking to Nagerjun from Dingboche, you will have a panoramic view of the mountains like the Lobuche East (6119m), Lobuche West (6145m), Kangtega (6685m), Toboche Peak (6367m), Thamserku (6608m), and Ama Dablam (6856m). If you are lucky, you can also observe a stunning sight of Makalu, the world’s fifth tallest peak on a clear day. The view of the Pheriche Valley from here is also splendid.
Making your way to Dhungla, you shall come across the Trekkers Aid Post, situated at Pheriche, run by the Western Volunteer Doctors and assisted by The Himalayan Rescue Association, aiding for the treatment of trekkers. Coming across to Chupki Lhara after passing the rock-strewn oblique with the sight of magisterial mountains, the peak of which is brimming with colorful prayer flags and Mani stones, you can walk down to the Khumbu Glacier moraine, keeping with you the patronage of portentous mountains of Khumbutse, Mahalangur Himal, Lingtren and the Pumori. Mt. Nuptse will loom up in the perspective once you cross the glacier pass.
When you finally reach the Everest Base Camp, you will find that it is decorated with pious prayer flags and small pyramidal stacking of stones, accompanied by the utterly anthemic sight of the Khumbu Icefall which looks like all the world’s glittering white confetti in a considerably colossal vastness of space, with the materialization of Khumbutse and Lingtren mountains looking down on us like Titans eternally petrified in a state of silent fixtures from the beginning of time. Reaching the Everest Base Camp fills you with a sense of contentment, and you are surrounded by pearl-like snow in your own tundra heaven, the slated rocks looking like frozen turquoise dragon’s breath.
You can trek to Kala Patthar as well, as Kala Patthar is an amazing vantage point to view Mount Everest. It also has the World’s Highest Webcam, The Mount Everest Webcam, located here. The hike will be toilsome but the reward for all that will be the most wonderful and breath-taking (quite literally because of the elevation!) panoramic view of Mount Everest, Nuptse, Chagatse, Lhotse and the Pumori, all silently gazing down at the miniscule humans who dare climb the mysterious sonority of the natural Olympians all antiquated since the emergence of land on Earth. The sight of the rising and the setting sun from behind the mountains is astounding, the rays changing ivory snow into tangerine; it looks like molten gold cascading down the mountain.
The whole trekking in Nepal journey is quite an adventure, one that is sure to be filled with memorable sights and experiences. Climbing to the Base Camp of Mount Everest is also a grand accomplishment, and it is a full filling ordeal. So come fill your holidays with memories and experiences of majestic mountains, spellbinding natural beauties and diverse cultures of the people by trekking to the Mount Everest Base Camp in Nepal.