Before Everest base camp trek there is A LOT to organize, A LOT to consider. Here are some ‘need to knows’ about our preparation for the Everest Base Camp Trek & some advice for You.
To be honest you don't have to be a runner to enjoy the trek, and in fact, you probably don't have to prepare at all if you don't want to. But the preparation will probably save you a lot of pain and suffering on the trail and help you to enjoy your experience there that much more and we suggest you do. The suggestions we have for physically preparing is to take long walks in hills if possible preferably wearing a pack with a similar load that you'll be carrying. Cycling and swimming are also great alternatives too, as is just about anything that gets your cardio working. Do some breathing exercise to get more oxygen to your lungs.
Trekking to Everest Base Camp may not be the trip for everyone. It is, at times, quite a physically demanding experience, and when you combine high altitude with plenty of challenging climbs, you get a recipe for suffering. But normal, average, travelers can, and do, hike to Everest Base Camp, but it is not that easy.
Our Everest base camp trek is called ‘Tea House Trekking’ : the tea houses are small guest house, homes or hotels dotted along the trail. You can get a room for 2 to 4 people in a room and almost all tea houses require you buy all your drinks and meals there too. The bathroom and toilets are outside the room and they are not heated rooms. Near Lukla there are tea houses every few hundred metres but as you reach higher altitudes tea houses & villages come around every few hours. It’s a genius way to trek. You don’t have to lug a tent and food around, and the local community are able to have a comfortable livelihood at a small cost to visitors.
All our trek to EBC do so in a tour group and accompanied by professional guide and porters. They will help you to show the way, carry your bag pack and order the meals, reserve rooms so you can enjoty your trek.
Clothing : Thamel’s tourist stores have more than enough to tailor to your needs for a very reasonable price. Can bought pretty much everything warm for the trek in Thamel & it was certainly sufficient for the climate up the mountain & despite being cheap, didn’t fall apart. But if you have your own Jacket, sleeping bag and warm cloths that is even better. Here’s what you can get here. Down jacket – keeps you warm higher up the mountain when the temperatures drop.
Fleece jacket – versatile, warm, quite light-weight. A must.
Waterproof pants – warm & waterproof are useful traits for trekking pants.
Inner fleece pants – handy for night time & the colder days towards the end of the trek.
Under armour shirts – good for the potential sweat aspect at lower altitudes as washing is sporadic if not non-existent!
Trekking socks – definitely more comfortable than your average sports socks in hiking boots.
Hat & Gloves – certainly needed for those chilly times up high.
Hiking boots – preferably you would have your own so they can be broken in before the trek.
The cost of these stuff is less than $125 each. & although all of these products were fake, they are actually good quality & we brought everything home to use again. The warm gear was worth its weight up the top
Important Purchases – Here are some small things that are indispensable while on the trek. We would highly recommend getting all of these things. They are either unavailable up the mountain or extremely overpriced in comparison to Kathmandu.
Iodine/Water Purification Tablets – Water is very expensive while on the trek & obviously tap water is not safe for tourists in Nepal. By taking some iodine or water purification tablets with you on the trek you will save plenty of cash & feel no budget pressures in drinking the necessary 3 to 4 litres minimum a day. Water is essential when trekking at altitude & purifiers should help ensure you make the daily intake.
First Aid – Buying some first aid supplies is definitely a good idea. Things like lip salve, diarrhea tablets, headache tablets, blister protection etc
Food – Packing a few snacks is important at maintaining energy levels at high altitude is sometimes difficult. Cereal bars & snickers will save you on several occasions in the middle of a tough day on the trail or … or just snack after dinner!!
Babywipes - A strange one you say?! Well, washing is not a regular occurrence in the tea houses and shower and not regular and it costs anywhere between $3-8, which isn’t a lot but it is an extra cost… & the main reason you deterred from showering is the cold!
Headlamp – Electricity is not too reliable in the Khumbu valley! Late night strolls in & out of the tea house are usually dark so a headlamp, or at least a torch, is a necessity.
Map – A very important purchase although our guide will carry a good trail map for the Everest region. Make sure it has altitudes marked & that it is detailed.
Batteries - It may be common knowledge to you, but batteries die faster in cold weather. A battery’s lifetime is severely diminished by cold temperatures & in the Everest region sub-zero is fairly common, particularly at night. There are places to charge at some tea houses but they will charge you an exorbitant fee for the service, especially higher up which just happens to be the most likely dying point of your once powerful friend! The trick is to keep your camera battery, iPod or whatever close to your body in a pocket or something, most importantly during the colder night time, and that extra body heat should help prolong battery life. Obviously bring fully charged spares wherever possible & just be wary of using battery power unnecessarily & that will hopefully allow fosome photographic evidence of EBC!
Beard – An optional extra I found rather favorable in the cold was some facial hair. Sure, beard growth isn’t for everyone…but it’s a cracking option for some. Keep it mind!
Travel insurance & rescueWhen travelling to the remote destination like Nepal Himalaya makes your insurance up to date. Make sure that your insurance policy covers cancellation, injury, death, lost baggage, theft, liability, medical treatment and expenses is strongly recommended. The insurance covers all the activities that you will be undertaking during your stay in Nepal such as trekking and climbing. If a client becomes ill, all hospital expenses, doctors’ fees and repatriation costs are the client’s responsibility.
Rescue InsuranceAll trek organizers, including Earthbound Expeditions, have an agreement in Kathmandu that guarantees payment for helicopter evacuations. They pay a cash deposit to the helicopter operator and collect the money from you once you have been rescued. And the reimbursement responsibility from your insurance company is gone up to you. Be sure your policy specifically covers helicopter evacuation. Also check that your insurance policy does not exclude mountaineering or alpinism or you may have a difficult time settling a claim. Earthbound Expeditions can facilitate optional emergency helicopter rescue insurance in Nepal also.
Helicopter RescueThere are a few reliable medical posts in the hills, such as the Himalayan Rescue Association (HRA) posts at Pheriche and Manang, and the Khunde Hospital which are all staffed by Western doctors. However, most accidents or illnesses will occur in the absence of reliable medical care. If you find yourself ill or injured in the mountains, here are the steps Earthbound Expeditions will take to rescue you.
If altitude sickness is suspected, our staff will descend with the victim immediately. For the more serious medical problems emergency helicopter rescues will be arranged by Earthbound Expeditions. If helicopter landing is not possible, it may be necessary to transport the patient to a place where it is possible to land the helicopter.
Guaranteeing PaymentHelicopter rescue services will rarely come to your aid without you either making a cash deposit or a promise in Kathmandu. If you are trekking with Earthbound Expeditions we will arrange the rescue and initial payments, but the victim is responsible for reimbursing the cost of the flight. Again, make sure you have insurance covering emergency helicopter rescue.
Note: You have to come with sense of adventure and humor to enjoy the trek in the mountains. No luxury it is all adventure.
Clothing List - This what we recommendFor the trek please find the list of things that is better to carry. This is general listing please let me know if you have further questions. Back pack (water proof), big for porter and 1 small for you ( Day pack) Money belt
CLOTHINGS Clothing should be normally light capable of providing enough warmth Preferable dark colors so that dirt is not easily remarkable.
Shirts long sleeved made of wool or flannel - 2
5 pairs of nice socks, muffler -1
one pair of nice gloves
Pair of sandal with back strap -1
One pair of hiking boots and one pair of sports shoes / Sandle
Under garments - 8
Woolen sweeter with highnkeck -1, cap -1
pants loose fitting - 2
Night wears - 1
T- shirts- 2 and down jacket / wind breaker jackets , sleeping bag ( incase you don't have you can buy or hire here in Kathmandu)
Sun block cream, Tooth paste and brush, Soap
Wide tooth comb, Lip balm
Video and steel camera with extra batteries
Torch with batteries
Music cassettes / walkman
Sun glass with retainer (thread / chain)-1
500 ml. thermos flask foldable with mug cover (?)
One or 1.5 litre water bottle
Swiss army Knife
FIRST AID MEDICAL KITS
We recommend you to consult your own doctor before you start the trip and bring the medications as per his/ her advice. However following items are worth full to bring.
Eye drops for burning eyes
Motion sickness and high altitude sickness medicine