EVEREST BASE CAMP FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

To the Nepalese Everest is called Sagarmatha. To the Tibetans it is Chomolungma, meaning mother of the universe. To the rest of the world it is the place where the earth meets the sky. The walk to Everest Base Camp from the Nepalese side, takes you through small villages al the way to Gorekshep. The valleys at the start are lush with abundant flora and fauna, gradually becoming more stark with mainly rocky moraine as you ascend to higher altitudes.

We have mentioned above that this page is about the Nepal trek to Everest base camp. The reason being, is that there are actually two main base camps called, 'Everest Base Camp," one in Nepal and one in Tibet. The trek in Tibet is known as the Everest advanced base camp trek, while in Nepal, it is the base camp trek.

The two treks are totally different, different countries, different terrain, different conditions.

Get answers to frequently asked questions to trek to Everest Base Camp.

The Everest Base Camp trek can be done throughout the year, however, Autumn (Sep - Nov) is often considered to be the best season for trekking holidays in Nepal with a great climate and several festivals. although it is a little colder than Spring, the days tend to be much clearer. Spring, (March - May) is the next favourite and also main summit season for Mt Everest. During spring time, the Khumbu valley erupts with beautiful  rhododendron flowers. June to August is monsoon season so the route is very quiet. During November and December it is very cold but again, some travellers find it worth visiting during this period, as there are fewer tourists.
No it is not. Everest Base Camp is a straight forward trek or hike. It has steep passes and rocky sections, but nothing technical
The entire trek can be done in 11 days, but it means that you will be chasing other peoples heels to descend from Namche to Lukla in one day. It is better done over 12 days and then you can always add on extra days it you want. By the time you have add on arrival and departure, sightseeing in Kathmandu and a contingency day in case of delays, you are looking at 16-17 days in total. If you add on the Gokyo Lakes Trek section then you need to add another 6 days. Likewise if you decide to add Island Peak then an extra 4-5 days.
Although Everest Base Camp is classified as a 'trek,' it has substantial altitude gain.  It requires physical fitness and stamina and most importantly, mental fitness. A good exercise and training program is essential and your training should include a lot of hill walking. The trek should not be undertaken lightly, after all, why spend the money if you are not willing to prepare yourself physically as well?
The route is very clearly marked out with wide paths in most places. The route heads up via the Kumbu Valley through small little villages. It is very hilly, and if there is a river to cross the paths will go down one side, over the river and up the other side. As you approach Lobuche, the route becomes quite rocky as you walk along moraines.
This really depends on the operator you travel through. The Sagarmatha (Everest) Park authorities do not ask for any medical information on the climbers when permits are purchased. Some operators request the clients complete a medical form, others do not. We require that all of our clients complete a medical form and based on the answers, we may request a letter from your medical practitioner. People suffering with conditions such as severe asthma e.g. should not climb. Regardless, anyone attempting the climb, or any climb for that matter, should ensure that they are medically fit, and convey any medical conditions to the operator they book with.
This is one of the most often asked questions - "how will I cope with the altitude". To be honest, this is an 'unknown' factor as no-one can predict how your body will cope at altitude. People who have been to altitude many times in the past without problems, may on one climb suddenly develop problems. There are many factors that play a role. The only way to help combat this, is to take all of the necessary precautions, and walk slowly, acclimatise correctly, don't ascent too quickly and drink plenty of water.
There are several variations but they start from either Jiri, or Lukla. The route from Jiri joins in at Lukla. From Namche, there are several variations you can take e.g. via Renjo La to Gokyo Lakes, Cho La, Dingboche or Periche etc. The routes via Renjo are the longest, while the direct route up via Tengboche and Periche/Dingboche are the quickest.

There are certain essentials that are needed for most treks and base camp is no different.  The best way to draw up your list is from the base up, i.e. thermal underwear, then hands and feet (gloves, socks etc). Then boots which must be waterproof with good ankle support, trekking pants, trekking tops, short and long sleeve, thermal jacket, outer shell jacket which likewise is windproof and water proof, hat, scarf, beanie, balaclava. Then consider sleeping, i.e. sleeping bag, etc. Accommodation along the route is in guesthouses, so a bed and mattresses are provided. Some include lovely warm duvets, others not, so a sleeping bag is required. If you are camping, then you will still need a sleeping bag but we will supply the sleeping mat.

Then, the last items to add are personal items like toiletries, camera, medicines, water bottle, backpack, camera etc.

We supply a duffel bag on arrival

Unfortunately this is something every trekker has to consider.  Anything from a stomach bug to altitude sickness can quickly stop a trekker in their tracks. If you are ill and need to turn back or even too tired to continue, a porter will walk off the mountain with you and your gear. If you require emergency evacuation, this will be contingent on your insurance cover. It is for this reason that insurance cover for this purpose is mandatory.

Yes you do. We (Nomadic Adventures) do not allow anyone to climb with us unless they have adequate travel insurance. Adequate, means you must be covered for

1) trekking or hiking - this may sound strange, but many insurance list that as an exclusion.

2) altitude up to 6,000 meters. Most travel insurance providers do not include this under their standard cover and often limit it to 3500m or less.

3) Sprains strains and physiotherapy - yes, many insurers exclude this, though ironically, this is what you will most likely need cover for. 4) personal accident - this is the horrible part of insurance. Yes, you need to be covered in the case of death. We are often told by clients - "if anything happens to me, just leave me there." It is not that simply. Bodies need to be brought home or laid to rest overseas, and this can run into thousands of dollars, creating a huge burden on family members.

We will assist in helping you provide good cover.

Alan Arnette writes a lovely blog on Everest

Those who have trekked in the Himalayas, know that the porters are the heart and soul of your trek. Without their hard work and strength we would not be able to fully experience the magnificence of Everest. IPPG aims to improve safety and health for porters working in the mountains for the trekking industry worldwide. We work to eradicate avoidable illness, injury and death. We do this by raising awareness of the issues among travel companies, guides, trek leaders, sirdars (porters foremen), and trekkers.

 

 Everest Base Camp query

Book your Base Camp Everest Trek
Other Treks in Nepal
 17 day tour
  Start point is from Lukla
  Altitude of 5495m
  A more popular trekking route
  Wonderful mix of culture and scenery
  Breathtaking views of Everest and surrounding peaks
  Same ascent and descent route
  Can be combined with Island Peak
Everest Base Camp Trek Itinerary
 15 day tour
 Start point is from Pokhara
 Altitude of 4130m
 Not as steep at Everest base camp trek
 Lower average altitude than base camp Everest
 Several route options
 Choice of base camp or circuit trek
 Stunning expansive mountain vistas
Annapurna Base Camp Itinerary
 23 day tour
  Start point is from Lukla
  Altitude of 5495m
  Less busy than base camp for the first 7 days
  Steeper and more challenging passes than Everest Base Camp
  Breathtaking Gokyo Lakes
  Different approach to Everest base camp
  Dramatically contrasting scenery and more of a circuit trek
Everest Gokyo Lakes Trek Itinerary
 23 day tour
  Start point is from Pokhara
  Altitude of 5360m
  Very remote with few permanent settlements
  Extended and strenuous trek
  Challenging mountain passes
  Lots of snow and ice sections
  Dramatically contrasting scenery
Dhaulagiri Trek Itinerary
 10 day tour
  Start point is from Pokhara
  Altitude of 3200m
  Treks along a well populated route
  Expect steep sections and lots of stairs
  Wonderful variation of scenery, forests and mountain views
  Trek is in part of the Annapurna region
  Accommodation is in lodges
Poon Hill Trek Itinerary
10 day tour
  Start point is from Kathmandu and Syabru Beshi
  Altitude of 3300m
  Expect steep sections and long days
  Gives you a great insight into the local cultural of the Tamang people
  Wonderful variation of scenery, forests and mountain views
  Trek is in part of the Langtang Region
  Accommodation is a combination of home stays and lodges
Tamang Cultural Trek Itinerary