|Fitness Level||: Strenuous||Max-Altitude||: 6189m / 20304.87ft|
|Country||: Nepal||Group Size||: 2-12 people|
|Trip Start||: Kathmandu||Trip Finish||: Kathmandu|
|Meals||: Breakfasts in Kathmandu, all meals during trek/climb|
|Accommodation||: 3-star hotel in Kathmandu and standard tea houses on trek, tents during the climb|
Climb on Island Peak and trek to Everest Base Camp can be a true mountaineering adventure in Nepal. After exploring the vibrant and culturally rich Kathmandu, you fly to the mountains to begin your adventure in the Himalayas. Trek through the quaint Sherpa villages like Namche Bazaar, Tengboche en route uncovering the Sherpa lifestyle of the Khumbu region en route to Everest Base Camp. You’d get the opportunity to absorb the incredible scenery of the Everest region prior to your climb on the Island Peak.
You’d be ascending the famous vantage point- Kala Patthar (5,643m) from where you see the spectacular views of Mt. Everest, Khumbu Icefall, Nuptse and Lhotse.
Trekking to Everest Base Camp (5,380m) is a perfect way to acclimatize before you climb on Island Peak (6180m); following the trek to base camp of Everest, you’d cross the Khumbu Glacier climbing up to Kongma La leading to the valley of Imja Khola then reaching the village of Chukkung- last place with teahouses before the climb on Island Peak .Apart from being just a trek to the famous Everest Base Camp, the climb on Island Peak is a great, rewarding, experience perfect as the introduction to the world of mountaineering in the Himalayas. It’s a climb with exposed situation with stunning sceneries. You can certainly feel this as one of the best adventure trips in Nepal.
|Trip Start Date||Trip End Date||Availability||Price|
A wave of mountain air welcomes you, as you get off the airplane. Look out for your name on a placard, held by one of our friendly Wind Horse representative. The short drive to your hotel, takes you across the city, our crazy traffic system here will keep you amused all along.
Take a shower. Later in the afternoon, join us for a pre-trip discussion in our office for the last minute preparation before the trek. Here you can meet your trek leader as well as other members of the group. If there are any questions you can ask the trek leader and also the management. If time permits, you can take a walk amongst the crowd of people, the Nepalese are a friendly lot and they will definitely return a greeting if you pass one. Walk down the narrow lanes and observe the deep rooted beliefs of the people. This is truly depicted by the ancient altars and shrines that stand next to modern structures. The city is bustling with contemporary life and ethnic values; it is a city unlike any other. So have a good night sleep and feel fresh to begin the adventure the next day. Overnight in Kathmandu.Accommodation: Aryatara Kathmandu Hotel
In the afternoon, there will be a pre-trip discussion where we can meet our trek leader, other crew and other participants of this trek. Overnight in Kathmandu.
Altitude: 2,800m/9,184ft, 2,652m/8,700ft|Flight 40 min| Trek 3-4 hours
The 40 min of flight to Lukla airport is just as exciting the oval windows will let you spot a lot of mountains, repress the apprehension when the turbulence bumps the plane, as the pilots are veterans. The Tenzing-Hillary airport landing strip is amidst the green hills, with swabs of clouds swirling about their sides. You will now be entering the gates of halfway to paradise into the Everest region, meet the crew and after a few technical arrangements and advices, trek through the prosperous village of Lukla towards Phakding village. The short trek will assist acclimatization; the enchantment takes over as you enter the village of Phakding, also a UNESCO heritage site. Take a trip to the Rimijung Monastery nearby to seek blessings for your trip ahead. Overnight in Phakding.
Altitude: 3,440m/11,283ft|Trek 5-6 hours
The trek to Namche from Phakding is alluring; the nature fills you up with enough encouragement to fuel you for the trek ahead. The fresh aroma of the pine trees along the way and the sound of the roaring “Dudh Koshi” river nearby, gives you a different high, walk over the famous Hillary Suspension Bridge. Catch a glimpse of Mt.Thamserku 6618 meters, and feel elated. The final steep ascent is still more encouraged by the sight of Mt Everest glinting over the Lhotse-Nupste ridge, at Chautara. Namche Bazaar clearly comes into view after about an hour, which will set your mood in for a well deserved rest. Taste the authentic “Daal-Bhat” (lentil soup and rice) combined with some fresh vegetables- the healthy staple of the locals. Overnight in Namche Bazaar.
Getting accustomed to high altitudes and the climate there is very important for soaking in the best trekking experience, when trekking to Everest Base Camp. Every health experts recommend proper acclimatization. Hence, we take a day off at Namche Bazaar to acclimatize. Namche Bazaar is the headquarters of the Khumbu region, so the small “Sherpa Town” is bustling with activities. This might also be the last stop for you to check your e-mails in one of the many internet cafés. Namche is also the trade point for Tibetan traders, who supply goods every Friday and Saturday. Hence, on the colorful market day, learn more about the Sherpa culture and visit the Tourist Visitor Center close to the headquarters of the Sagarmatha National Park. The Namche market itself is certainly worth wandering around and is a good place to get some souvenir shots of "Khumbu life". Don’t miss the chance to check out the world’s only Yak (Mountain Ox) "parking area" above the market, careful though the Yaks are notoriously ill-tempered.
It is also to be noted that staying active during acclimatization is essential.Hence, an hour’s trek to Kumjung will keep that in check enjoying the view of 6th highest mountain Cho Oyu (8153m). The Kumjung Gompa (Monastery) displays a scalp that purportedly comes from a yeti. While at the gompa, ask the monks (lamas) for directions for getting to Guru Rinpoche's(Head Monk’s)cave. Back in Namche Bazaar, beat the evening chill with some local brews and chat with the Sherpas, their stories ill enchant you. Overnight in Namche Bazaar.
Altitude: 3,870m/12,694ft|Trek 5- 6 hrs
Energize yourself with a hearty breakfast; the trail to Tengboche is well worn and adventurous. Wow! Will be the first expression to leave your lodge, as the splendid views of Mt Everest, Nupste Peak, Lhotse and Ama Dablam can be seen. You will feel your jaws drop as you see Thamserku in awe at a close view. The trail leads you to steady ups and downs with the magnificent views of the great Himalayas very close by; sometimes the urge to reach out and touch them is overwhelming. The trail leads you further towards the pine forests and paths bedecked with gravel and stones. You'd be crossing a bridge covered in colorful prayer flags over the Dudh Koshi River. After passing through a couple of settlements like Phunki Thenga, you'd get to see picturesque view of the surroundings. Certainly that will make you admire the choice of inhabitance the settlers here have made. After a lunch break at Phunki Tenga, there’s only a stride left over a steep climb up the pine forests, before reaching Tengboche.
Pay your respects to the biggest Monastery in the Khumbu region and take part in the ceremonies, but keep that camera lens away from it all. Tengboche might be the first place to have a clear view of Mount Everest en route to the base camp . You can ask the locals to point it out. Spectacular views of Ama Dablam, Thamserku and Kongde Ri are a bonus. Retire for the night; a good rest is the need of the hour. Overnight in Tengboche.
Altitude: 4,360 m/14,300 ft| Trek 5 - 6 hrs
On a clear day you may rise up to a beautiful, sunlit morning to spot the stunning view of the monastery and the mountains. Zip up! The air will get nippier as we ascend further up to Dingboche. The trail lets you pass through several “chortens” (Buddhist Saint’s shrines) and “Mani Walls,” the Tibetan scripts on the walls might be foreign to you, don’t waste your time reading them, try your photography skills instead. Try some “Thukpa” (stock soup and noodles) at Pangboche, it tastes better with red chili paste and will definitely warm you to the core. Certailnly a better way to enjoy the lunch with the close view of Mt Ama Dablam. Head northwards to Pheriche village that lead you to the Imja Valley. Then, after crossing the Lobuche River, the last steepest climb takes you to Dingboche- a fairly large village that lacks greenery as it is above the tree line. Lull yourself to sleep in the foot of the mighty Himalayas. Overnight in Dingboche.
Altitude: 4940 m/16,207 ft| Trek 5-6 hrs
Today, after breakfast the ascent continues en route to Everest Base Camp the terrain gets drier and rockier like Mars, you will feel like you're exploring another world. However, it is earth and it supports life. The Yaks standing idly look at you intently as you pass by at the Yak herder’s site at Dusa. Feel the same nostalgic vibe as you continue through Phulung Karpo, the camp site of the first successful Everest Expedition in 1953. The blue sky in contrast with the white snow atop the Mt. Pumori (7138 mts), makes you skip a heartbeat. Cross a wooden bridge across a roaring stream and ascend to Duglha, which offers the view of Mt. Nuptse, Cholatse, Mt. Thamserku and several other peaks. Feel the sense of achievement when you are walking above the clouds.
Later in the day you'd be trekking along the ridge top called the Chupki Lhara; you can see dramatic view of the mountains beyond. Here, you can find memorial stones honoring an American and a Nepalese Mountaineers who perished while climbing in the Everest region. The sites serve as a reminder of man’s relentless thirst for mountain quests. Take a moment to pray for their souls. Although the trail descends to moraine of the Khumbu Glacier, you will find yourself facing several great peaks, take a breather the air is already thin up there! After you cross the moraine, the boulder and rock speckled slopes with Mt. Nuptse towering to the right are a sight to behold! You may be looking everywhere for the mighty Mt. Everest, it is close by but still out of sight. Let your body relax and adjust to the low pressure and thin, mountain air at Lobuche. Overnight in Lobuche.
Altitude: Gorakshep: 5170m/16961ft, Everest Base Camp: 5364m/17,594ft| Trek 6-7 hrs
Finally, today is the day to reach Everest Base Camp. After all this time in the mountains, you must have become used to the environment. The more you see the majestic peaks along the trail the more you want to be here. The crown of Everest North Ridge, along with Mt. Pumori, Mt. Mahalangur, Mt. Lingtern, Mt Khumbuste, Nuptse peak is a photographer’s delight. The slight elevation at Thangma Riju lets you rotate your camera lens a full 360 degrees to capture the peaks. The Kala-Patthar (Eng: Blackstone) knoll rises beneath Mt. Pumori , make way further to Gorak Shep and get surrounded by the majestic peaks, including the mighty Everest. You will need to subdue your hunger pang, with a hearty lunch. The trail to Everest Base Camp cuts across through the once enormous Gorak Shep Lake.
The realization of achieving the goal finally washes you down with utmost ecstasy; weariness wears down and fills you with sense of pride. Appreciation comes at instant for those who aspire to reach the Everest summit braving the notorious Khumbu Icefall, after scanning the landscape around you. If the weather is glorious, you can view the perfect vistas of Nuptse, Khumbuste and Pumori. Stroll around the bright tents in contrast with the white background. Meet mountaineers from all across the globe, who camp there for a respite, exchange greetings and spread goodwill. Standing up there, we are sure you will be whispering the words “I m glad I came.”
However, there is an option for those who are interested to hike to Kala Patthar to view the sunset which is indeed worth watching. The sun rays with its orange hues falling on the snow-capped mountains are simply breathtaking. If you'd prefer to hike to Kala Patthar the next day, you can enjoy the sunrise for which you need to liaise with your guide.
Trek back to Gorak Shep for a well deserved rest, if the sky is clear you stare out at the stars at night, they look clearer and closer. Find your place in the galaxy!
Altitude: Kala Patthar 5545m/18,192ft| Trek 7-8 hours
If you are into nature photography, and have reached Everest Base Camp, one cannot miss the climb to Kala-patthar. From Kala-patthar you can view the stunning sunrise over Mt. Everest 8848 ft. The glint of the first rays of the sun that hits the mighty Everest, will surely take your breath away. However, pack yourself with several layers of insulated clothing as the sunrise view at Kala-Patthar demands you to be out of your sleeping bags even before the lark. The temperatures can plummet to -10°c and further down to -14°c with cold winds blowing at your face. The treat for eyes doesn’t stop even after the sunrise, the awe-inspiring Himalayan panorama will have you clicking away pictures with your camera, at the speed of light. The vista that you witness here will not only remain etched in your computer desktops, but they will be there in your heart and mind.
If anyone wants to visit the Everest Base Camp, the day will start early so that you can return to Gorakhshep on time to have breakfast together with the group.
Fill your growling tummies with some breakfast at Gorak Shep. Head off to Lobuche village, a popular stop for trekkers and climbers alike. Relax and unwind at Lobuche. Overnight in Lobuche.
Altitude: Kongma La 5,535m/18,159ft, Chhukung 4,730m/15,518ft|Trek 7-8 hrs
Today is a long day and will face the challenge crossing the Kongma La, so you start your day early. You’d be carrying lots of snacks to fuel yourself with energy and also crossing the Khumbu Glacier traversing a small rocky trail that ascends and descends in between the seracs. After crossing the glacier which takes an hour and half you’d reach a small meadow. Thereafter, you’d make a steep climb to the Kongma La (5,535m) and as you ascend the scenery is breathtaking which compensates for the expended effort. You can enjoy the superb view of the well-known Nuptse-Lhotse wall as well as the panoramic views of Makalu, Pumori, Cho Oyu, also a tip of Mt. Everest. Crossing the pass is worth like uncovering a gem in the Khumbu Valley since it’s less traversed by trekkers and climbers. From the top of the pass you’d be descending down with a short scramble down to the lake, finally trekking into the Imja Valley. From here we take an ascending trail across yak pastures till we reach Chukkung- a yak herders’ settlement but now has many lodges. This would be your final destination of the day. Overnight in Chukkung.
Altitude: 5,200m/17,060ft)| Trek 3-4 hrs
Today’s walk is comparatively easy to the Island Peak Base Camp. You’d first cross a river past by the last tea shop followed by climb up fairly steep trail. The trail first goes south and then east by the side of the Imja Valley. The walk carries on a winding trail above which you’d find the southern flank of the moraine of Lhotse glacier. Finally, after having walked along the streamside traversing the glaciers of Imja and Lhotse you’d reach the south-west part of the Island Peak, and then you halt here at the Island Peak Base camp for the night.
At the base camp there will be pre-climb training today. You’d be given training the basic mountaineering skills- peak climbing techniques, using of climbing gears properly such as the ice axe, climbing boots and crampons, harness, ascender, etc. The training will also include rappelling and abseiling. It might not be mandatory to have previous training to climb Island Peak. But a prior training can boost your confidence with better chances to get atop Island Peak to gather an real mountaineering experience in the Himalayas. We can spend the rest of the day hiking to high camp and back or resting for the next day’s climb. Overnight at the base camp.
Altitude: 6,189m/20,305ft|Trek 10-12 hrs
This is the day all you’ve been waiting starts off very early waking up around 12 am to 1 am, and after having breakfast you prepare for the day. It’s always advisable to start off your day early so that you can reach the summit before noon. This way you can avoid the windy condition of the afternoon which can hinder your summit. You’d be climbing on a steep hillside which will get narrower. Then you’d continue up into a rock gully, which then follows the ridgeline experiencing an exhilarating and exposed traverse onto the snout of the summit glacier. The guides will be fixing rope on the summit headwall so that you can ascend and descend safely. For your safety, man rope as well as fixed rope will be used. Since two newly formed crevasses around 3 to 4 metres long are there you’ll have to cross ladders. Being more than a technical climb you’ll find it to be an interesting one. At some places it nearly gets as steep as 50 degrees. The summit ridge is gained nearly after 200 metres from here you can see the impressive view of Lhotse. A final steep climb brings you to the summit (6189m), here you can sit down and enjoy the breathtaking views and take pictures. Thereafter, you’d descend back to the Island Peak Base Camp and meet our crew waiting for us. It’s time to be jubilant to have succeeded the climb on Island Peak climb. Overnight at the Base Camp.
Today would be an extra day kept as the reserve just in case the previous day would not be favourable to climb because of the weather condition. Overnight at the Base Camp.
Altitude: 3,985m/13,074ft| Trek 5-6 hrs
After breakfast, you’d be leaving the base camp walking down from the Imja Valley to the lower elevation. The trail will take you through the quaint villages of Shomare and Orsho walking in the Khumbu Valley. Of course there is an alternate and older route (Upper Pangboche) that you can take and en route you can also visit the oldest monastery in the Khumbu region. Otherwise, you can follow the usual route to the village of Pangboche. From here you can enjoy the views of the stunning mountain vistas like Ama Dablam, Everest, Kantaiga and Thamserku. You’d be halting for the night here. Overnight in Pangboche.
Altitude: 3,440m/11,286ft|Trek 4-5 hours
Walk through beautiful hillsides covered by conifers, as you move ahead the Rhododendrons, the national flower of Nepal, greets you with various shades of red, the feeling is heavenly! The trail further descends to thick pine forests, all along the way you are never devoid of the view of the peaks nearby. A relaxing lunch at Kyangjuma (3570 m/11,710 ft) with the view of Ama Dablam, Thamserku and Nuptse will set you in motion again. The trail leading Namche Bazaar is winding and wooded, get your cameras ready to take pictures of wildlife in this elevation- mountain goats and pheasants are common sights whereas the elusive snow leopards are hard to spot. Namche bazaar finally comes into view after passing a Chorten, and an army camp. Take a final look behind at the majestic mountains you have left behind.
Take a warm shower; you would probably need it after all that walking and check your mails, stroll around or hit the sack early once you reach Namche bazaar. Overnight in Namche Bazaar.
Altitude: 2800m/9184ft|Trek 7-8hrs
The final leg of this exciting trek of the Everest Base Camp, fills you with sadness leaving behind the mountains but also happy to have reached the base camp of Everest- dream of every avid trekker. The walk across the suspension bridge, laced with colorful prayer flags atop the Dudh Koshi River, will make you turn back and return to the mountains.The warmer air down at this level will ease your runny noses and sore throats. The distant snowy peaks bid you farewell and a safe journey homewards.The prayer flags and stone shrines wish you with good luck. Once you reach Lukla it assures that civilization is not far away.
Stretch those sore legs and chat with fellow trekkers about the experience you had beside a bonfire, it is enlivening! Overnight in Lukla.
Our cheerful representative, will drop you off to the airport three hours prior to the flight departure. The mystic land of the Himalayas holds many more secrets to be told. Come back again for another rendezvous with the mighty mountains.
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