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Gokyo Lakes and Everest Base Camp

Anonymous
Fri, 10/08/2010 - 21:58

Hi, my name's Katie and I have just booked this trip for Easter.  Anyone else out there either already booked on this trip or thinking about coming along? 

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Anonymous
Mon, 10/11/2010 - 21:36

Hi Katie, I did this trip 18 months ago and loved it, you will love just as much I'm sure. On my trip the nights were cold but the day were pleasantly warm.

Anonymous
Thu, 10/14/2010 - 13:51

Hi, as someone who has already done the trip, you got any advice for a novice nepal traveller?

Anonymous
Thu, 10/14/2010 - 14:57

The best advice is to enjoy it, it is bloody hard work but you will get fitter as each day passes. I struggled on the second day (I think) the trek up to Namche Bazarre, due mainly I think to taking altitude tablets - I stopped taking them that day and did much better, therefore I wouldn't take them unless you really have to. Food wise, it is basic and gets more basic the higher you go so I took some dried fruit (packets of cherries from tesco etc were great) which everyone enjoyed, likewise if you want to save money take your own mars bars etc. I took re-hydration tablets which were very useful and again, bottled water was 15 rupees in Katmandu rising to (I think) 200 rupees at the furthest point up the mountain. Good boots are essential and don't rush off with the 'pack leaders' do your own pace, you'll take in much more. I took a pee bottle for the night time - quicker and easier than heading off to the toilet. I could go on, you will love it, the Nepalese are friendly, but be careful of young pick pockets in the capital - distraction techniques are used.
You can pay extra for showers on route, most of our party opted out - no one smells after a while and if they did, then it wasn't noticeable.

Fri, 01/07/2011 - 20:21

Hi Katie, I have booked on this trip departing Heathrow on the 6th April. I'm travelling down from Preston by train, did the same thing last year when I went out to Zanskar and it worked well. A couple of my mates did this trek a few years ago and highly recommended it. Looking forward to seeing Everest close up, only seen it in the distance out of a plane window up to now. Rgds Graham 

Anonymous
Fri, 01/07/2011 - 20:33

Hi Grahan

Yay - someone else is booked on the trip - I am flying out of Heathrow on the Wed 6th April as well - I am flying down from Glasgow (flights were better than the Edinburgh ones) - so I have a nice transfer window to spend sitting in Heathrow (5 hours).  I am getting slightly excited about it now - but slightly nervous as well! 

Katie

Fri, 01/07/2011 - 21:47

Katie, must be at least another four booked on the trip for it to be on. Sounds like you will be flying over Preston around the time I am boarding the train, give me a wave, will catch up with you at Heathrow.

Anonymous
Sat, 01/08/2011 - 18:51

I'll give you a wave and see you at Heathrow! I'll be there from 1600 hours sitting in a corner reading a book!!

Anonymous
Sat, 01/08/2011 - 22:36

I've also just booked - my first trip to the Himalayas, can't wait!

Anonymous
Sun, 01/09/2011 - 16:38

This is my first trip to Nepal and the Himalayas as well! Trying to work out how cold it's going to be!

Tue, 01/11/2011 - 18:49

Katie, it's interesting to look at some of photographs on the other Everest Base camp treks, certainly a big difference in clothing between the vallies and the passes, even some of the guides wearing duvets at high level. Found a website which gives monthly temperature figures etc. for Lukla at 2500m http://www.weather2travel.com/climate-guides/index.php?destination=lukla

Anonymous

Thanks Graham - checked the website out and now planning what to take (some people cal it work avoidance - I call it looking forward to my holiday) - Spent a week getting stabbed in the arm by needle yielding nurses - so hopefully I am fully immune to anything evil!!  Discovered today that there is some evidence that my asthma inhalers may help with Altitude sickness - here's hoping!  K

Anonymous
Mon, 02/21/2011 - 09:01

Hey guys,

My name is Sam and I am also departing to do this trek on the 6th of April, booked it a couple of weeks ago. It will be my first time to the Himilayas, so very excited. What sort of training are people doing? Im planning on walking and cycling.

Anonymous
Tue, 03/01/2011 - 21:29

Hi Sam, I am currently trying to go walking around the Pentlands every Sunday - might help with my fitness but with no peaks over 600m it is not going to help me with altitude acclimatisation.  Might head to the Lakes one weekend if I have time.  Realised today that it is only 5 weeks to go - getting very excited.  Katie

Anonymous
Sun, 03/06/2011 - 10:47

I met some mountaineering chaps when out walking yesterday and its given me some urgency to get training! Im just going a few cycles and 20 km walks on the south downs about 250meter peaks. I only got back from doing a ski season bout a week ago so im sort of relying on my skiing fitness to do somthing special. Think its time to head out of a nice long cycle. 5 weeks wonderfull! just trying to get everything sorted properly.

Sam 

Anonymous
Sun, 03/06/2011 - 17:09

Also, is anyone going to take diamox, some people seem to love it and some seem to hate it. Is anyone else on this trip got a opinion on it? I asked to see my GP about it but he cancled my apointment, gena ring up and ask.

How big are peoples day packs going to be? I have a 65 litre pack but maybe this is too big..

For water a camelback, but no one seems to say anything about this? 

Sam 

Anonymous
Sun, 03/06/2011 - 19:00

I went to the local travel clinic for vaccinations and the doctor there insisted that I carry diamox with me - better to have the option of using it than not - from what I can tell it helps with oxygen absorption and the travel nurse was insistent that I take some with me.  I am unsure about using it due to the mixed results but I have it already packed.  I have a 35 litre osprey pack and I plan on taking it with me.  I have got a camel bak for water purely because it packs so small for travelling out there and a smaller waterbottle with an inbuilt filter.   If anyone else has any alternative advice I'd be really happy to hear it as this whole trip is into the unknown for me.  I am excited then apprehensive then I look at photos and get really excited again!

Katiie

 

Sun, 03/06/2011 - 21:03

My kitbag arrived over the weekend it's now time to start thinking about packing.

Sam, I asked Exodus a few weeks ago about weight limit etc. on the flight into Lukla and got the following reply, suspect 65 litres a bit big :- 12 kg is the weight limit just for kitbag. Additionally you can have hand luggage which will be you day pack, they will be probably not checking your hand luggage at the airport. There is no really a limit but most of the customer have 25-35 litres backpacks and obviously more you put inside more you have to carry by yourself later on.

I have done a couple of trips to this altitude and the only person to have problems was the one who took diamox, keep off it unless the guide advises you to take it.

Never really liked using the camel bak system, the tubes have a habit of freezing up in cold weather. I usually take a couple of Sigg bottles and fill them with water I treat with Chlorine Dioxide, I suspect you will be able to buy boiled water from the teahouses.

Hope this helps

Graham

Anonymous
Mon, 03/07/2011 - 10:58

My kitbag arrived at school this morning - how exciting :)  I read somewhere in the trip notes about leaving a bag behind in Katmandhu for after the trek - what are other people thoughts on this?  Are you taking a smaller bag to leave behind - or using a larger bag to carry everything across and then packing the kitbag once in Nepal.  From a quick glance at the size the kitbag it may just fit my sleeping bag in :)

I have also opted for Chlorine Dioxide for water purification.

Katie

Mon, 03/07/2011 - 18:14

Katie, the last time I was in Kathmadu we left a carrier bag in the Hotel with clean clothes for the return journey and anything not required on the trek. Sounds like you need a smaller sleeping bag !

Graham

Anonymous
Mon, 03/07/2011 - 20:07

I guess I have a decision to make - warm sleeping bag or clothes :)

Anonymous
Mon, 03/07/2011 - 20:11

Good thinking on the camel back graham. Im gena buy a 35 litre day pack now. Cheers for the advice on diamox, im gena take some with me and book a apointment with my GP. 

I got my kit bag this morning as well! I think il just take a few cloths to leave in hotel.

Does anyone wear contact lenses? Im a bit unsure what to do about glasses and sun glasses, think i may buy some perscription sunglasses.

Im hiring my sleeping bag and down jacket through exodus to pick up at the hotel in Kathmandu, think this will save hastle and money. 

Can't wait.

Sam 

 

Anonymous
Mon, 03/07/2011 - 20:45

Hi to all of you heading off on this trip. Just a couple of quick notes - when I did it I took along my own sleeeping bag and North Face jacket, both of which compacted down very well, those on the trip that 'rented' their gear from Exodus were a little dismayed as the gear was big and cumbersome. Invest in a good sleeping bag and a liner - it will be cold out there at night. I went in November and daytime, (once the sun was up) it was quite pleasant and the North Face only came out when we stopped for a breather. I left a clean set of clothing at the hotel for when we got back and good thick socks with liners will serve you well. Showers are available, at a price and I doubt many of you will actually feel the need to make use of them, a simple bowl of hot water will work wonders after a day trekking. It a cracking trip, don't forget to leave any spare gear for the porters at the end, they will appreciate it enjoy the last night with them - improvised disco at the lodge at Lukla, with a few well deserved beers for all and ones you will think you have earned.

Anonymous
Tue, 03/08/2011 - 15:03

So gudlodboy, you would say dont hire your stuff through exodus from kathmandu? It is 55 pounds if i hire it, but about 250 if i buy. Would you say its worth the money? 

Sam 

Anonymous
Tue, 03/08/2011 - 17:53

Single traveller, likes a beer and has been known to try and sing after having one too many

Anonymous
Tue, 03/08/2011 - 17:59

Hi Sam, difficult call to make but in these financially difficult times, if this is likely to be a one off trip then renting is the way to go and if you catch the 'bug' then you will no doubt start to buy stuff in your own good time. The bulkiness shouldn't be too bad, bearing in mind that you will hand over your kit bag every morning to the porters and won't see it again until you get to you next lodge where it will have been deposited in your room. Hope this helps, and enjoy the trip.

Anonymous
Wed, 03/09/2011 - 10:37

Katie what have you done about your down jacket and sleeping bag? I could hire it from the UK for about 120 quid. Maybe worth doing that. All these descisions! 

Sam 

Anonymous
Wed, 03/09/2011 - 12:52

Hi Sam - I bought a down jacket over Christmas because it was freezing up here for December and January!  I was donated a RAB sleeping bag from a friend which I will be taking with me.  Prior to this I was looking into ALPKIT sleeping bags which came highly recommended by trail magasine and outdoor shop people as reasonable ways of obtaining high tech gear (but maybe not as long lasting as the more popular brands).  The ALPKIT bag that I was looking at was just over £100.  Both Cotswold outdoors and field and trek have massive sales on at the moment, and the nice lady in Cotswold outdoors suggested that their down jackets will be entering the sales late in March!  This is my 5th trip with Exodus and I can't imagine them supplying poor quality gear.   If you have concerns about the quality of kit supplied in Nepal then I would email exodus and ask them direct - hiring in the Uk for £120 - seems pretty steep to me!  I bought my kit because I know I am going to need it again - if I had not already planned a trip for October then I probably would have been hiring kit in Nepal.  Not sure if this is helpful to you. 

Graham - as you have been to Nepal before - quick question on currency - do you recommend UK pounds or US dollars?

Katie

p.s. 4 weeks today :)

Wed, 03/09/2011 - 18:26

Sam - the last time I went to Nepal (seven years ago) I took sterling traveller cheques which I changed in the hotel in Kathmandu, will probably do the same this time. Perhaps gudoldboy, or anyone else reading this, can give an update if some better way of doing it these days.

Graham

Anonymous
Wed, 03/09/2011 - 19:12

I took a mix of US dollars and pounds sterling which I changed at the hotel before we started the actual trek, the rates in the hotel is as good as anywhere and you can always leave behind a small amount with your clean kit. Sam, the kit supplied by Exodus was good quality, I think it was the bulkiness of it that was the main concern.

Anonymous
Sun, 03/13/2011 - 00:07

Why are people taking dollars and pounds? Can you not get Nepalese Rupees in the UK?

And yer Katie I went into field and treck by chance and the sale was great! Was loving it, although the chaps in the shop were clueless.

Havent quite made up my mind on the hiring equipment yet. Are people buying good head torches? My dad has a wind up LED one, but may not be good enough so may hire that as well. 

Sam 

Mon, 03/14/2011 - 19:31

Sam - it's illegal to import and export Nepalese Rupees (NPR) therefore you have to change US dollars or Sterling into NPR when you arrive in Nepal. From reading other reports we will have some early starts, presumably in the dark, therefore a good quality head torch essential, I have a Petzl Tikka 2.

Graham

Anonymous
Wed, 03/16/2011 - 09:36

Im looking at cholirine dioxide water purification, iv been to boots, and lots of other pharmacies but only treking shops have it. Are people getting the drops £7 pounds of up to 60 litres of water, or cholorine doixide tablets about £20 pounds for up to 60 litres (both are life systems) ? Sorry for the constant questions, im almost sorted!

Sam 

Anonymous
Wed, 03/16/2011 - 09:58

I bought the tablets - but purely because the shop I went into did not have the drops.  Unsure as to whether or not there is a difference.  I also have a Petzl head torch - Tikkina (about £19) had it a couple of years - it only has one setting though and I do miss the option of dimming the light available with the slightly more expensive ones (my Tikka 2 had an unfortunate accident) - would definitely recommend a hands free torch!

3 weeks to go :)

Katie

Wed, 03/16/2011 - 20:03

I have some drops from my previous trip, you have to mix 12 drops from each bottle leave for 10 minutes and then mix with the water and leave a further 10 minutes. Suspect the tablets a lot easier but they cost more and you can't do smaller quantities.

Graham

Anonymous
Thu, 03/17/2011 - 16:55

Ah got some perscription sun glasses today, my sun hat and been walking. Fell like a proper exploorer. Good luck all in your final preparations!

Anonymous
Sat, 03/19/2011 - 12:08

My brother decided to share some information about Lukla Airport with me along with a link to YouTube - thought I would share this with you

Lukla Airport
Where is it?
The mountains of Nepal
What makes it dangerous? You think climbing Mount Everest is dangerous? Try landing at the nearest airport. Approach Lukla too far from the left and you’ll crash into the mountains. Too far to the right and you’ll fall down a thousand yard drop. Throw in changeable weather and a short, sloping runway and you have one nasty little airstrip.

Surely this can only add to the excitement of the trip!! 

Not long now :) I'm getting very little work done at the moment as my mind is already in the mountains!!

Katie

Sat, 03/19/2011 - 18:05

Katie, it's taken a long time but someone had to raise it sooner or later. Did you not watch "The World's Most Extreme Airports" on Channel 5 last October , I suspect you can guess which airport was number 1.

Graham

Anonymous
Sat, 03/19/2011 - 18:48

yeah, did watch that programme but must have blocked it from my memory - my brother took great joy in reminding me!!  It'll be all good :)   Katie

Anonymous
Sat, 03/19/2011 - 23:06

My grandmar, watched that program (most extreme airports), and when I told her i was off to Nepal she was adiment that I wouldn't fly into Lukla. I just told her i wasn't to sure lol.

I can't wait for the  flight to Lukla, completly agree about it making me excited. Can't be too dangerous because looked it up on Wiki and there havent been too many fatal crashes. Im far more concerned about altitude sickness ect.

:) Sam 

Anonymous
Mon, 03/21/2011 - 22:02

Is anyone else on this trip? Must be at least 4 or it wouldnt run. Sam

Anonymous
Mon, 03/21/2011 - 22:12

so far there I make it there is Katie, Graham, Sam and Rachel!  But exodus did guarantee all 2011 Departures!!

Anonymous
Tue, 03/22/2011 - 09:09

Are you by your self Rachel?

Anonymous
Wed, 03/23/2011 - 14:04

Hi all - glad to see the preparation are going well, only two weeks to go! I'm on my own - I asked exodus about the size of the group last week and they said there were five people signed up. Rachael

Anonymous
Thu, 03/24/2011 - 00:48

Ah 5 sounds exciting. Is this your first trip of this nature, trecking, high altitude ect?

sam

 

Anonymous
Thu, 03/24/2011 - 00:53

Ah i apologise rachael, just looked up and it seems this is your first trip to the himalayas. 

Anonymous
Fri, 03/25/2011 - 10:13

Hi all. Have just read your posts and would like to add a few comments, if a little late. I used iodine drops for the water, you get used to the taste. If you have metal water bottles fill with boiling water at night and use as a hot water bottle in your bag. Sleep with a beanie on, everything else will be warm in your bag. Keep cameras and batteries warm overnight to prevent problems. Sadly on my trip our group had many stomach problems, putting it down to dodgy chicken dishes in the teahouses. We quickly became veggies! Diamox is usually available from your guide who will have a pharmacy on his back. Might be an idea to try without and take it if needed. You will get headaches, sore throat and runny noses, altitude I'm afraid. Keep hydrated and find your own pace, no prizes for being first up. Taking energy/chocolate bars is a great idea for snacking en route. They will be available locally but get much more expensive the further from civilisation that you go. This goes for the beer, Gorkha is best, but we were told not to take alcohol above 3000ms. The sherpas will certainely appreciate any clothing you can leave behind. You will be amazed at how they manage wearing just flip flops! Have a great trip and be sure to visit Rum Doodle in Kathmandu for a meal, a must for all climbers and trekkers.

Anonymous
Sun, 03/27/2011 - 22:01

Been looking it up and the Nepali speak a form of indian. Anyone speak Indian? I had some chaps from Kathmandu at work the other day, and they spoke fairly good english. Im going to look up some phrases. Im hoping Namaste (Greetings or I bless the divine in you) will get me by quite politley.

 

Anonymous
Sun, 03/27/2011 - 22:04

Khana khannu bhaiyo - Have you eaten? (often used as a informal greeting) lol

Mon, 03/28/2011 - 06:41

The link attached goes to a webcam located just down the valley from Everest Base Camp http://evk2.isac.cnr.it/ also forecast for Lukla http://www.wunderground.com/cgi-bin/findweather/getForecast?query=Lukla it all looks a bit unsettled at the moment.

Graham

Anonymous
Mon, 03/28/2011 - 12:16

Thanks for the weather update Graham - I was told by a local policeman that it was -15 degrees at the top of Kala Patar last week.  There is a group of law enforcers setting off from Edinburgh this week to trek up to base camp and back again.  We had snow in Edinburgh last week - so weather seems unsettled everywhere - on the news this morning they were talking about earthquakes and stated that they know that there is going to be a megaquake in Katmandhu just not when it is going to happen!! Nice!!

10 days to go - I started packing yesterday :)

Katie

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