23 June 2024

Can Beginners Trek to Everest Base Camp ?

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Himalayan Prayer Flags

It’s not the hardest trip in the world, even though the Everest Base Camp is located at the base of the highest mountain in the world. It’s actually easier than Aconcagua, Machu Picchu, and Kilimanjaro combined. But ascending the mountain is an entirely different matter. To reach the summit of Mount Everest, months of preparation, perseverance, and hard effort are required. But no official preparation is needed to reach Everest Base Camp, so hikers of all skill levels, from novices to specialists, can participate in this beginner-friendly journey.

Beginner-friendly does not imply that everybody can hike up to EBC. After all, this is a hike at a high altitude. Prior to starting the EBC journey, prior trekking experience is much valued. To attempt the trek, even if it’s your first time, you should be in excellent physical and mental health and not be suffering from a significant medical condition. The rugged, mountainous trail requires a lot of strength to climb and descend for five to seven hours each day. Breathing becomes considerably more challenging at the high altitude (maximum 5545 m) because of the low oxygen level caused by the decreased air pressure.

It’s a great idea to start your trekking adventure with an EBC trip if you’re a beginner. We urge you to take this action. But be sure you are fully informed about trekking in the Everest region before making such a significant decision. Everything is now available online. Make appropriate plans, research, and preparations. Just take your time. Give yourself enough time to make the EBC trekking experience one of the most delightful and unforgettable experiences of your life.

What makes Everest Base Camp a beginner-friendly trek?

Out of hundreds of trekking pathways that range from very easy to extremely difficult, the Everest Base Camp trail is rated as moderately demanding. The altitude of the journey, the trail’s steepness, its remoteness, the facilities along the way, the local climate and weather, the time of the trek, the trekker’s physical and mental fitness, and other factors all affect how difficult the trek is. With all of these considerations, the EBC trek is rated as moderately tough, making it manageable for novices. However, due to inexperience, first-timers may find the walk challenging.

There isn’t a road connection to the EBC trailhead, although there are frequent flights from Kathmandu or Ramechhap to Lukla. This saves you a lengthy bus travel through rural Nepal’s off-road areas. Similarly, the Everest area’s lodging and dining options are so well-established that you might forget you’re in the Himalayas. In places such as Lukla and Namche Bazaar, you will find some luxurious hotels that are on par with 4 or 5 star establishments, in addition to simple tea houses and mountain lodges. A prime illustration of this is the Everest View Hotel. Along the entire path are good-quality tea shops and restaurants serving delectable local and international cuisine; Namche has some wonderful bars and cafés. 

Everest Base Camp is a great place for novice trekkers to go because of these amenities, which help them more readily adjust to the Himalayan climate and reduce the burden of lugging food and tents.

10 tips for first-time trekkers to trek to EBC

Making travel plans for your first expedition can be daunting. It can be even more difficult to execute. Furthermore, it might become even more uncomfortable when it occurs in a foreign nation, particularly in a remote Himalayan region distant from the industrialization of towns. However, there are wonderful things out there! This time, it’s the real deal—the Everest. So, we’ve included a few recommendations to make things easier for you. Before you reserve your trip to Everest Base Camp, please go through these 

Take some time for preparation

Having a solid preparation is half the battle won. You haven’t precisely experienced high-altitude trekking, so you’re not exactly sure how much work it takes to continuously push oneself uphill in a single day. Every day, you’ll be ascending between 500 and 800 meters in height. Therefore, some training is needed. We do not imply proper mountaineering training when we refer to training. You will simply be trekking in the high alpine area; you will not be climbing any mountains.

Cardiovascular activity including swimming, dancing, running, and HITT workouts may be part of your training. Follow your body’s and your lifestyle’s best interests. If you are not in the habit of exercising, begin your preparations at least half a year before the walk. If you visit the gym, you can incorporate weight training as well. Whenever possible, choose the stairs over escalators or elevators. Additionally, before you go to Everest Base Camp, climb for several days at least twice while carrying a rucksack.

Choose a reliable trekking company

The efficiency with which you finish the journey is significantly impacted by the trekking organization you choose to book with. In the Everest region, hundreds of trekking businesses provide their services. Some are old and some are new; some are real and some turn out to be scams; some are local and some are multinational. Thus, pick your trekking company carefully.

We advise you to choose a local business that has operated in the Everest region for at least ten years. Longer years indicate that they have served a variety of hikers and endured a range of weather and climatic circumstances. They are able to meet your demands and save your life in the event of an emergency in the Himalayas. Prior to making a reservation, visit the company’s websites and social media accounts, read TripAdvisor reviews, and get in touch with them by phone, text, or letter.

Book the trek during an appropriate season 

Trekking to EBC occurs mostly in two seasons: spring (March to May) and autumn (September to November). There are also two off-seasons: winter (December to February) and monsoon/summer (June to August). The best times to visit are in the spring and fall because of the steady weather, comfortable temps, and clear skies that allow for continuous flights from Kathmandu to Lukla and even better views of the mountains. Therefore, the best time to hike for beginners is during the busiest season.

Even if there is a lot of rain, snow, wind, cold, and obscured vistas when trekking in the off-season, it is not the best time to go for experienced hikers. Less crowds are one benefit of trekking in the off-season. Therefore, you have to decide between empty trails and perfect trekking conditions.

Get travel insurance

Travel insurance is essential for all hikers, not just novices, who are trekking in the Nepalese Himalayas. Trekking to the Everest Base Camp is a perilous task as exciting as it sounds. There is always a chance that something will go wrong during the expedition, even after weeks of planning and months of preparation. Thus, you have to be ready for anything.
The most frequent risk when trekking at high altitudes above 3000 meters is acute mountain sickness, or altitude sickness. Severe symptoms must be treated right away, although moderate symptoms can be tolerated. It may be necessary to have you airlifted to Kathmandu for treatment because there are no hospitals in the Everest region. Similar to this, costly helicopters are used to evacuate people during weather emergencies and natural catastrophes. Therefore, you won’t have to worry about money in an emergency if your travel insurance covers these kinds of costs.

Carry the right trekking gear

The following information will give you some idea about what you need to bring for the trek. It is important you do not forget the essential items, as this will determine your comfort and safety on the trek. Equally important is that you do not burden yourself with unnecessary equipment on the trek.

  • Sleeping Bag (Sherpa Teams will provide but need to return after completing the trip)
  • Duffel Bag (Sherpa Teams will provide but need to return after completing the trip)
  • Fleece jacket or pullover
  • Waterproof windbreaker or windcheater
  • Thermal underclothes
  • Rain poncho
  • Down jacket (Sherpa Teams will provide but need to return after completing the trip)
  • Fleece or wool trousers
  • Sun hat or scarf
  • Trekking pants (two pairs)
  • Mittens or woolen gloves
  • Hiking socks (several pairs)
  • Moisture-wicking shirts, including t-shirts
  • Trekking shoes or boots with spare laces
  • Flip-flops or sandals for relaxing in the evenings
  • Underwear (several pairs)
  • Swimsuit or swimming costume
  • Sunglasses
  • Headlamp or flashlight/torch
  • Sleeping bag (Sherpa Teams can provide this for you)
  • Trekking poles (if desired)
  • Hiking backpack with a capacity of at least 40 liters
  • Small lock for your backpack
  • Reusable water bottles (at least two liters)
  • Water purification tablets or filtration device
  • Wash towel
  • Basic first aid kit

Toiletries (tissues, toilet paper, moisturizer, lip balm, sunscreen, sanitary pads, hand sanitizer, nail clippers, a small mirror, toothbrush, toothpaste, glasses, contacts, etc.)

Pack light

The most frequent error made by novice hikers is overpacking. Packing heavily can make your walk much more difficult because you will have to carry all of your belongings with you the entire time. However, this kind of mistake is not as costly on other vacations because you can leave your stuff in your hotel room and go around freely. A potter will only take up to 12 kilos from each trekker, even if you hire one. Furthermore, each passenger on the Lukla aircraft is only permitted to bring 15 kilos of luggage. Thus, only bring what is absolutely required. If you are hiring a guide, remember to bring a smaller daypack with you so you can carry the necessities for the trip, such as water bottles, sun protection, and sun creams, cash, etc.

Hire guides and potters

We wouldn’t place too much emphasis on guides and potters if you were a first-time hiker who was accustomed to trekking situations in alpine settings, such as the Everest Base Camp. However, potters and trekking guides are invaluable to novices. Recall that the quality of your guide can make or ruin your journey. A knowledgeable guide will not only show you where to go on the trail but also impart knowledge about the local mountains, vegetation, and wildlife. In addition, should you wish to speak with the locals, they will serve as an interpreter. They have received extensive training on how to guarantee your safety and react appropriately in emergency situations.

Trekking potters make your journey much more fun because they remove the burden of dragging your heavy load up and down hills, while trekking guides protect your safety. Thus, for your first trek, make sure to hire potters and guides; this will also benefit the local economy.

Go slow with adequate acclimatization and proper rest

We can appreciate your excitement. Since this is your first trip, you want to cover as much ground as you can in order to reach your target as soon as possible. This turns out to be disastrous on a lengthy trek like the EBC, even if it might work for short hikes. For the first few days, you may feel fine, but after a few days, the extra strain on your body manifests as fatigue, and you may become ill. Additionally, as each hour goes by, you’re ascending higher into the atmosphere, so traveling quickly raises your chance of altitude sickness and deteriorates your health even more. There’s a chance you may have to abandon the hike.

Hence, to get the most out of your first trip, move as slowly as you can, get enough sleep the night before to allow your body to recuperate, and take regular days of acclimatization to allow your body to gradually adjust to the lower oxygen level.

Hence, to get the most out of your first trip, move as slowly as you can, get enough sleep the night before to allow your body to recuperate, and take regular days of acclimatization to allow your body to gradually adjust to the lower oxygen level.

Take extra care of your health

Hiking at high altitudes carries a significant risk of altitude sickness, as was previously mentioned. Headache, nausea, vomiting, appetite loss, trouble sleeping, fast heartbeat, etc. are some of the symptoms. Eat healthily, get enough sleep, and hydrate your body by consuming three to four liters of water daily and avoiding dehydrating substances like alcohol in order to prevent AMS.

An additional major risk when trekking is injury. You could have to abandon the walk in the event of even a slight accident because the Himalayas lack adequate medical facilities. Thus, exercise extra caution when hiking to prevent any wounds, including blisters. To avoid contracting any water-borne illnesses, such as diarrhea, drink either boiled or purified water. If you have any health issues, speak with your doctor prior to the walk and make sure you have a first-aid kit with all of your normal meds.

Keep a positive attitude

Last but not least, remember to have an optimistic outlook. The way you think about the objects around you affects the quality of your hiking experience either directly or indirectly. For example, you may encounter customs that you find incomprehensible when trekking in the rural Himalayan regions. Rather than challenging the locals’ beliefs, it’s advisable to maintain an open mind and continue on.

Similar to this, you might not always be able to access the internet because of the remote location, or there might be a power outage because of insufficient sunlight. Consider the surroundings and be grateful for the nature you came for rather than complaining about it. The water is largely frozen due to the colder altitude, and you have to pay a few bucks for a warm pail of water that is insufficient for a full bath. So get ready to go days without taking a shower. It would be rather beneficial to carry deodorant.

Engage in conversation with the locals and other tourists while sharing endless travel tales over the bonfires in the tea houses. Appreciate these simple moments since they are what leave a lasting impression. 

Now that the blog has come to a close, hopefully you have enough motivation to schedule your first expedition to Everest Base Camp. Remember all of the advice and ideas we’ve provided in the blog if you’re planning to trek. For first-time trekkers like you, our 14-day Everest Base Camp Trekking is the perfect option if you want to have the most memorable and pleasurable trekking experience in the Everest region.
 

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