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My Trek to Everest Base Camp

Everest, on a previous fly-over

Everest, on a previous fly-over

Mount Everest

Mount Everest is the highest mountain in the world, standing at 8,848 metres above sea level. It is part of a large range of mountains in the Himilayas including Lhotse (8,516m) and Nuptse (7,855m). It is known to the locals as Sagamartha, and for Christmas I had decided I was going to trek to the Everest Base Camp.

There are two Base Camps, on opposite sides of the mountain, one on the north side in Tibet, and the other on the south in Nepal. They are used as the base for climbers to begin their ascent to the top of Everest, from the north to the northeast ridge and from the south to the southeast ridge. They also provide some amazing views and an incredible trek to the base camp.

Although the actual climb to the peak of Mount Everest is not too demanding on skill, it's the altitude that can be a real killer. Mount Everest alone has claimed over 200 lives, even trekking to the base camp can be dangerous if warning signs of altitude sickness are not heeded.

So this was going to be my adventure. 12 days of hard trek just to get to the base camp, I've been to Nepal before and know it quite well so decided I would head out from a base I already felt familiar with.

Roof top view of the old temples

Roof top view of the old temples

Check out the shops and stores as you wind through the narrow streets

Check out the shops and stores as you wind through the narrow streets


Having been to Kathmandu several times previously I didn't feel it necessary to tour it again, but I had a free day before I started the trek and to be honest, there's always more to find in this city it would appear! I couldn't possibly count all the shrines and temples I have seen when wandering around, but with a real mixture of religions around Kathmandu there's something to amaze everyone. The first thing I did in the morning was to find a rooftop restaurant to get a good picture. But it's also so good from the ground with lots of winding streets and alleyways, involve yourself in the hustle and bustle and enjoy the wide variety of shops with home made products.

Me, in Lukla before I start the first day of trekking

Me, in Lukla before I start the first day of trekking


The next morning I took a short scenic flight to Lukla (2,860m). It's incredibly quick to fly there and is a great place to start the trek from, you are rising in altitude but not too much and a quick trek that day takes you closer to sea level for a nights sleep in one of the many local lodges - otherwise known as teahouses in this region; before another day of trekking. My night in this first teahouse was actually spent watching 'Into Thin Air: Death On Everest'. Great film but perhaps not the most appropriate!

Some of the early scenery

Some of the early scenery

We crossed many bridges like this one along the way

We crossed many bridges like this one along the way

Base Camp Trek

From here we started trekking, day in day out. For the large part of every day we walked, taking in the ever changing scenery from long winding rivers surrounded by fir and pine trees, before starting our first major ascent to Namche (3,440m) where you suddenly get a real feeling of the Himalayas and all around you are mountain peaks. In Namche they have the most fabulous bazaar so you can buy all your last minute warm clothes at incredible prices before making your final attempt at ascending to base camp. But don't worry, this will take many more days yet!

Approaching Namche Bazaar

Approaching Namche Bazaar

Everest's peak is lurking there in the background

Everest's peak is lurking there in the background

Altitude Climatisation

From Namche we took a day off to climatise to the altitude. Although you may think this means a day of rest it doesn't, it actually means that we took a day of trekking up into the mountains once again for the day before heading back down to Namche for the night. It's hard work as you suddenly climb a lot higher above sea level than you've been before, and oxygen is getting thinner all the time which makes every step that little harder. But it makes going back up again the next day a little easier. Plus it also gives you some great views!

Some great views of the local scenery

Some great views of the local scenery

Looking down on Namche Bazaar

Looking down on Namche Bazaar

Thyangboche, Lhotse and Nuptse

I was now heading up and up, heading towards Thyangboche (3,867m) where they have the most beautiful monastery,but also some of the best views of the Lhotse and Nuptse peaks. It was after dinner that evening I was relaxing outside the teahouse for a moment as the sun went down and the dark quickly came in that I managed to capture my favourite image of the trip. It's the two peaks of Lhotse and Nuptse with their snowy caps glowing in the light as dark came down around us all and captured an incredibly special moment for me. There were lots of moments like this on the trip but this was one I will always remember.

The gorgeous glowing peaks of Lhotse and Nuptse

The gorgeous glowing peaks of Lhotse and Nuptse

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A long winding way to Everest

A long winding way to Everest

The way to Everest Base Camp

From here on in the landscape has changed as it becomes a lot colder and the scenery more barren. The oxygen level gets lower and lower and everything becomes a lot tougher. But my breath was still taken away more than anything by the sights.

You will come across some very sobering areas as well. The stones laid out are memorials for all those that have been lost on the mountain. There are some large memorials for the likes of Scott Fischer but the rest are just small memorials to those lives lost by the hundreds of people who have failed to come back down from Everest.

Stone memorials

Stone memorials

Great views from Kala Patthar

Great views from Kala Patthar

Kala Patthar and Everest Base Camp

Then once again the scenery changes as we're really getting closer to the top of our trek now. And it's getting colder, some nights near Everest Base Camp it's cooling to -13 degrees Fahrenheit. I trekked up to Kala Patthar (5,643m), which means 'black rock' in Nepali, and this was incredibly hard work as it's very steep and at the altitude oxygen levels are down to less than 50% the levels at sea level.

And here is the proof I made it all that way!

Everest Base Camp! (5,364m)

Everest Base Camp! (5,364m)

The dark peak that eludes me...for now.

The dark peak that eludes me...for now.

And that dark peak is the peak of Mount Everest. It eludes me so far but one day I hope to go the next step and reach the top. One day!

But after this I just had the very long walk home again, but all in all it was definitely worth it for every moment of scenery, landscape and views that will forever be lodged in my sweetest memories. I just hope I've managed to share some of the wonder with you.


itsmonkeyboy (author) from London, UK on December 04, 2012:

Wow, thank you Betsy. That's very kind of you to say this will be an inspiration for someone who should surely be an inspiration to us all. I wish Evvie all the best and hope Evvie makes it to Nepal, it's such a beautiful place.

Betsy Hampton on November 09, 2012:

Incredible and informative. My friend Evvie will be trekking to Base Camp in 2013 (October), she is a two time Breast Cancer Survivor and now has Parkinson's. She will turn 58 years old during the trek, this has long been her dream to visit Base Camp. Your blog will be yet one more inspiration to her.

itsmonkeyboy (author) from London, UK on March 25, 2012:

Thank you Jlava73, very kind of you to say so. The experience was incredible and one I shall always remember.

Jennifer Vasconcelos from Cyberspace and My Own World on March 20, 2012:

What an incredible Hub and experience! Thanks for sharing it with us.

itsmonkeyboy (author) from London, UK on January 15, 2012:

Thank you Mischeviousme, I shall have to crack on with my next adventure hub!

mischeviousme from Bradenton, FL on January 12, 2012:

Awesome hub! I love the scenary and the detail was superb. Voted up on this one!

itsmonkeyboy (author) from London, UK on December 30, 2011:

Thank you very much Manna in the Wild. Of all the photos I've ever taken on my trips (or just at home) that is definitely my favourite, it was one I even dared to think other people may appreciate.

Manna in the wild from Australia on December 29, 2011:

The two peaks of Lhotse and Nuptse with their snowy caps glowing is an awesome shot.

Linda Bilyeu from Orlando, FL on December 19, 2011:

Absolutely! Very soon! :)

itsmonkeyboy (author) from London, UK on December 19, 2011:

Thank you Sunshine! It's quite a compliment coming from a Hubpages Elite! I shall have to get on and write some more soon.

Linda Bilyeu from Orlando, FL on December 19, 2011:

Very impressive article and journey! Congrats on your Hub Of The Day! Looking forward to more of your hubs:)

itsmonkeyboy (author) from London, UK on December 14, 2011:

Thank you Eddy, very kind words from someone I'd recommend on here as an experienced writer. It means a lot to me.

Eiddwen from Wales on December 14, 2011:

Wow a great hub which I have to vote up up and away.

I now look forward to following you on here.

Take care and enjoy your day.


itsmonkeyboy (author) from London, UK on December 04, 2011:

Thank you Emma, that means a lot. I'm quite taken aback as to the response I had to this hub, it's inspired me to write more. I just have to be careful that people like it as much as this one! Thanks again.

Emma Kisby from Berkshire, UK on November 30, 2011:

Those photos are really breathtaking. I'm glad you got 'hub of the day' for this - another great achievement :)

itsmonkeyboy (author) from London, UK on November 29, 2011:

Hi Itournepal, thank you very much for your comment and for taking the time to read my hub. Your tour sounds very impressive, I did see some of the helicopter 'pads' if you can call them that on my trek. Your trip does sound fantastic though, my first time in Nepal I took the plane around Everest and that was great to see everything from up high, but it's maybe a little too high, a helicopter would be perfect! on November 29, 2011:

Well expressed with highlights and great pictures. I was there at the end of October amid bad and good weather. This time we flew by Helicopter to Lukla (refuel) then to Kalapatter (5,550m). Landed there without stopping engine, took some pictures and flew back to Shyangboche (3,800m). Breakfast in Everest View Hotel and then back to Kathmandu. Everything in 3 hrs and couldn't see much of what you explained.

itsmonkeyboy (author) from London, UK on November 28, 2011:

Thanks again to all the new comments, very kind.

Avamillicent, I didn't really prepare for the cold to be honest. I know it can be cold in this old England but not as cold as that! The best way I could prepare was to be as fit as possible, which I always try to do in any case, and to be prepared with as many warm clothes as possible. I think by the time I reached Base Camp I had my base layers on, fleece trousers, trekking trousers, waterproof trousers, a t-shirt, a long sleeved t-shirt, a fleece top, my wind-proof jacket, my waterproof jacket and my down jacket. Then I had my fleece gloves, hat and scarf, my down gloves and my balaclava. After all, it saved carrying it all!

And thanks Peanutitrous, nice to meet someone else who has trekked out that way, and I know what you mean about the nostalgia as this trek was a year ago now and I'm already itching for another adventure. It can wait though. And your typo is excused!

Tara Carbery from Cheshire, UK on November 28, 2011:

Sorry I meant 'your' not 'you're'! Typing too fast!

Tara Carbery from Cheshire, UK on November 28, 2011:

I loved reading this! I did a trek to the Annapurna base camp in 97 and thoroughly enjoyed it! I love a bit of nostalgia! Trouble is, you're hub has made me want to zip off somewhere for an adventure again! Unfortunately, finances won't allow this. I'll always have my memories and photo's though! Voted up.

rosika on November 27, 2011:

Very lovely pictures of the magical place...Good work! You are very very lucky to be there and enjoy the stunning nature and your description of your journey is very interesting! voted up!

Victoria Wallcot from New York on November 27, 2011:

Great Pics

avamillicent on November 27, 2011:

Congratulations on being the hub of the day, you deserve it. Just a question, How did you prepare for this hike? I mean to tolerate the extreme temperature.

Sranunta Lamduan from Bangkok, Thailand on November 27, 2011:

Wow, it must be a great experience trekking to the base camp on Everest mont. Your hub is enjoyable and awesome. It's a motivation and inspiration to adventurous lovers / travelers. Thanks for sharing great experience with us. / Kesinee

Cynthia B Turner from Georgia on November 27, 2011:

This is awesome, inspiring and incredibly brave! The photography is beautiful. I definitely admire what you have done with your dream. Congratulation on Hub of the Day, deservedly so.

Arlene V. Poma on November 27, 2011:

Thank you for sharing your adventure because not very many people can accomplish this. I enjoyed the ride you have provided us through your writing and photographs, but I do remain in my jammies and am still on the couch with my laptop. I haven't moved since this morning, except to pick up the Sunday paper. I am not a fan of football, but I like to stay in the living room while my husband watches all of the football games. Just another football Sunday in suburbia (sigh). Please keep us posted on your upcoming treks and some great escapes for those of us who would like to be there with you.

Carrie Smith from Dallas, Texas on November 27, 2011:

This is a beautiful hub. It's so nice to say you have taken this adventure. And you have captured some amazing photographs along the way. Congrats on being the hub of the day!

Rebecca Mealey from Northeastern Georgia, USA on November 27, 2011:

As I doubt that I will ever get the opportunity, thanks for the next best thing! Your descriptions are perfect and the photos are beyond awesome!

itsmonkeyboy (author) from London, UK on November 27, 2011:

Thank you all.

Thank you Mary615, Arusho, Kikalina, if I make it to the top I'll be sure to write about it!

Thank you DzyMsLizzy, your words are very kind. I'm not convinced of my current physical condition but when I came back I was seriously fit, the hard work at altitude did wonders for my health. On a side note, it's cold tonight (obviously not as cold as there) and it just reminded me of the non-stop hot lemon drinks with sugar I drank whilst over there. So refreshing, hydrating and warming. I may have one now, cheers! But if you ever get the chance to visit Nepal I suggest you take it, as a vegetarian there will be lots of food to please your palate. The bridge wasn't so bad though, I can't remember now just how many of those we crossed, but they were generally quite safe. I think!

mljdgulley354 on November 27, 2011:

Congratulations for this being hub of the day. It is well deserved. Voted up and beautiful. The photos and your writing made feel as though I was there with you. Good job.

Gail Meyers from Johnson County, Kansas on November 27, 2011:

Wow! Amazing pictures and a great hub! Thanks for sharing it!

Liz Elias from Oakley, CA on November 27, 2011:

Congratulations on earning Hub of the Day! Well deserved!

Your photos are beautiful--now I won't have to make that trek. ;-) Seriously, at my age and current physical condition, it wasn't on the menu anyway. But, as a vegetarian, the rice and vegetables sounds like the perfect food!

That bridge looks exceedingly scary--way worse than the one we crossed in Canada --dang if I haven't forgotten the name of the place. :-(

Oh, well, I enjoyed your article, and I congratulate you on the accomplishment and wonderful photos. Voted up across the board.

DIY Backlinks on November 27, 2011:

Breath taking views, good story!

kikalina from Europe on November 27, 2011:

goodluck with your quest for the peak!

keithmatyi on November 27, 2011:

great article with great pics!

arusho from University Place, Wa. on November 27, 2011:

Beautiful hub! I hope one day you can make it to the top. Great pictures too.

Vinaya Ghimire from Nepal on November 27, 2011:

Your have brilliantly written your experiences. There is no need to read lonely planet guide book on Everest expedition.

Mary Hyatt from Florida on November 27, 2011:

Congrats on the Hub of the Day! I voted this UP, etc.etc. I admire you for your spirit and determination. We need more people like you in this world. Your photos were great. I like to see people who are still young and healthy to do these types of adventures. We look forward to your Hub when you make it all the way to the top!

Kristin Trapp from Illinois on November 27, 2011:

How proud you must feel of this awesome accomplishment. I enjoyed reading your firsthand experience, as well as your personal photos. ~voted up and awesome~

Claudia Tello from Mexico on November 27, 2011:

Congratulations on both, your hiking accomplishment and for being nominated hub of the day!

itsmonkeyboy (author) from London, UK on November 27, 2011:

Thank you Omggoshgosh, these trips are available all over the world so get yourself on one and see the sights!

Thank you Medor, I've been to quite a few different places so may have to cover a couple more on here, the response I've had to this hub has been phenomenal and it's certainly inspiring me to write more!

Thank you Kris, always great to have some nice comments from someone who enjoys hiking too.

Thank you Htodd, it's alway good to have dreams. Even if we never reach our goals it's always important to have something to look towards in any case. I think I'm fortunate to have done everything I've already achieved in life so I can't complain at all.

Thank you Avamillicent, get yourself some hiking boots and find a trail. You can't go far wrong with most trails around the world and they don't have to be as excessive as the one I've written about to see some amazing scenery. And thank you again, hub of the day has been quite a big surprise, I've been grinning like a Cheshire cat all day!

itsmonkeyboy (author) from London, UK on November 27, 2011:

Namaste Softhard. Thank you, it means a lot that someone from Nepal appreciates my hub. I've been to Nepal a few times and can highly recommend it to anyone. It has something for everyone, from the treks into the mountains to relaxing in the Chitwan National Park, taking in the beautiful scenery and nature they have there. If my hub could encourage one more person to visit Nepal I'd be very happy.

avamillicent on November 27, 2011:

This is a really beautiful at the same time inspiring hub. I'm thinking of doing a similar hub when I get the chance to go on a hike.

congratulations on being the hub of the day (and for your successful hike). You really deserve it.

htodd from United States on November 27, 2011:

That's really very inspiring ...I have my dream too

Kris Heeter from Indiana on November 27, 2011:

What a journey - very inspiring. I love hiking but I think I'll these altitude climbs through the eyes of others like yourself. Thanks for sharing the awesome pictures!

medor from Michigan, USA on November 27, 2011:

Great photos and story... thanks for sharing... continue to write about your adventures...

omggoshgosh from Belgium on November 27, 2011:

I would love to go to the base camp myself and take me some pictures like you!

vasantha T k on November 27, 2011:

Beautiful pictures.Your proof picture is colorful and congratulations for your trek and for your hub.

softhard from Kathmandu on November 27, 2011:

Congrats for the hub of the day. And many thanks for visiting my home land and Annapurna base camp and writing a hub on it. Hope this hub will definitely encourage others to visit Nepal and will surely help to grow tourism factor.

Was really happy while reading this hub. Thanks for putting all the things together. Really really thanks a lot.

itsmonkeyboy (author) from London, UK on November 27, 2011:

Thank you Beth!

And thank you Pstraubie48, I've always wanted to try out more mountains and Mt. Fuji must have been wonderful, it's definitely on my list of things to do! Thank you again for your kind words, if you share your experience of Mt. Fuji I'll be there to enjoy it!

Patricia Scott from North Central Florida on November 27, 2011:

Thanks for sharing...You did share a good bit of the 'wonder' of your journey through your words and pictures. I eagerly read on to hear about what you experienced befoe climbing. That after all IS part of the whole experience, isn't it? In my head I have always wanted to make that journey...but that's as far as I ever got. The only mountain I have ever climbed is Mt. Fuji. We camped at the base of it several times as well and were greeted each morning with the spectacle of her beauty in our view.

Experiencing what YOU did must have really taken your breath away as you said.

Beth Pipe from Cumbria, UK on November 27, 2011:

Fabulous photos and a great account of an amazing adventure!

beindustrial from Effingham, IL on November 27, 2011:

Wow. Great hub! Congratulations to your journey. I also dream of sometimes climbing the Mt. Everest but unfortunately that still remain as a dream.... anyways Salute to you!!!

itsmonkeyboy (author) from London, UK on November 27, 2011:

Thank you Style-of-life, it was a lot of fun taking the pictures.

And thank you Cindy, it was definitely an experience I will always remember. It was thanks to the HubPages contest that gave me the motivation to post up one of my favourite trips to share with everyone. I just hoped people would appreciate it as much as me, and the accolade has me chuffed to bits!

Cindy Murdoch from Texas on November 27, 2011:

Wow! What an accomplishment! And what a wonderful experience to have been able to have. Congratulations on your accomplishment in this journey. Knowing I will never be able to do this, I have enjoyed it through your words.

Congratulations on your hub of the day! It definitely deserves it!

style-of-life from Netherlands on November 27, 2011:

Awesome pics!

itsmonkeyboy (author) from London, UK on November 22, 2011:

Thank you all for your wonderful comments.

Nell, thank you, it really makes a truly remarkable memory for me which will be with me for a long time.

Melbel, thank you, it was really nice to write something a bit different than I'm used to, and you absolutely must go! If it's something you want to do there are lots of companies out there which specialise in these trips. Or of course you can find places in Nepal, I found some in Kathmandu, just book your flights, head out there and enjoy the sights!

Simone, thank you, the altitude sickness is hard work. You always find yourself on edge as to whether it will affect you badly or not. One trekker whilst I was there was airlifted out and spent a week in hospital. I managed well with the food though, but then a diet of rice and vegetables can get a little tedious after a while. Plus, although I did occasionally splash out on meat I was never totally sure where it came from!

Simone Haruko Smith from San Francisco on November 22, 2011:

What an incredible trek to take! While I thoroughly enjoyed reading about your experience and looking at your breathtaking photos, what I've heard from friends who've completed the journey about altitude sickness and the food is enough to deter me from going to Everest base camp myself. For that reason, I'm doubly thankful that you shared your experience with us!

Melanie Palen from Midwest, USA on November 21, 2011:

This is absolutely beautiful! Thank you for sharing everything along your journey, totally an awesome take! I would LOVE to go to Everest base camp. It's seriously one of my lifelong dreams.

Nell Rose from England on November 21, 2011:

Hi, they say that you are only 6 people away from someone who has done something amazing, and in this case its true! what a great experience! I would love to visit those lovely towns and climb to base camp, the highest I have been was mount Teide Tenerife, it was about 9,000 feet, I could have gone to the peak of the volcano at 12,000 feet, but I felt it wasn't good for my asthma! well done!

itsmonkeyboy (author) from London, UK on November 21, 2011:

Thank you Emma. It really was an experience to remember, and of course I'm proud of what I've done so won't miss those final dreams if they never come true. Thanks for reading and again for your kind words, it makes writing this worthwhile.

Emma Kisby from Berkshire, UK on November 20, 2011:

What an incredible sight and congratulations on your hike. Having the determination to follow your dreams and visit the most famous mountain in the world is truly amazing. I am sure that one day your next dream of making it to the climate may happen - but if it doesn't, remember what you have already achieved. Thank you for sharing it all with us.

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