Everest High Passes trek
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Everest High Passes trek you walk to Ama Dablam Base Camp and Everest Base Camp. Afterwards we cross two high passes, Cho La and Renjo La, both of these are over 5,000m.
Everest Base Camp has a reputation for congested trails with many other trekkers. You can read how busy the trek to Everest Base Camp is and our advice for avoiding the worst of the crowds. The key advantage of Everest High Passes trek is that you get away from the main Everest Base Camp trail. We have been operating treks to the Everest region in Nepal since 2004. Our itineraries include several acclimatisation days to ensure you remain fit and healthy. We designed our Everest High Passes itinerary to allow for gradual acclimatisation. For this reason we visit Base Camp first then when adapted to high altitude cross the high passes.
You will follow in the footsteps of famous mountaineers and walk the trail from lodge to lodge. Sagarmatha National Park, known as the Khumbu, is in north-eastern region of Nepal. Mount Everest is the highest mountain in the world at an altitude of 8,848m. Ama Dablam, Pumori and Nuptse tower above us making this a magical and inspiring place to visit. We include visits to Sherpa villages and Buddhist monasteries at Thame and Tengboche. You will meet Sherpas and get to know about their way of life and Buddhist religion.
Your Everest trekking holiday begins with a guided sightseeing tour of Kathmandu. After having explored the capital of Nepal you take the flight to the mountain airstrip at Lukla. From this small town you start the Everest Base Camp hike into the Himalaya. After ten days of walking we arrive at Everest Base Camp at an elevation of 5,300m. If you are in the Spring season you will see many expeditions climbing Mount Everest. After one night at the lodge in Gorakshep we make the ascent of the walking peak of Kalapatar at an elevation of 5,554m.
Rather than retracing the Everest trail back to Namche we walk out over the Cho La pass at 5,420m into the Gokyo valley. In the morning we climb Gokyo Ri for views of the Everest massif including Mount Makalu and Island Peak. After crossing the Renjo La pass at 5,345m we descend into the Thame valley. This is one of the main trading routes with Tibet, and then walk back to Namche Bazaar and Lukla.
- For better acclimatisation we organise a longer trek. The gradual ascent profile for this trekking holiday has worked well for our past groups. We have a very high success rate of our trekkers reaching Everest Base Camp and crossing the high passes.
- We are Himalayan trekking specialists having operated trips in Nepal for many years. Roland Hunter has designed the itinerary from his first-hand experience of this trek.
- Based on client feedback we won the 2018 Gold Award as AITO Tour Operator of the Year. Read more about our Testimonials and Awards.
- We pay for private weather forecasts from EverestWeather.com. We also use in house forecasting throughout the duration of this trek.
- We send a Thuraya satellite phone on our group treks in Nepal. Your leader will have reliable communications for logistics, planning and group safety.
- We provide the porters with windproof jackets & trousers and shelter. We follow International Porter Protection Group (“IPPG”) guidelines.
- We bring a comprehensive medical aid kit.
- Our team with first hand knowledge of this trek provides pre trip support. During high season we have someone from our UK Operations team based in Kathmandu.
Flying into Kathmandu on a clear day is in itself an unforgettable experience. The Himalayan peaks are only a short distance north of the capital of Nepal as seen from the plane. After customs, you will pass into the passenger pick-up area outside the building. You will see a Mountain Company signboard. Our representative will be waiting to welcome you to Nepal.
After transferring to your hotel we will give you a full trek briefing. The rest of the day will be yours to explore Kathmandu and to make final preparations for the trek. You will hear the Nepalese word for hello ‘Namaste’, you will never forget that word after this holiday.
This is a one day guided sightseeing tour of the Kathmandu Valley. We visit three out of the seven World Heritage Sites. You start off by visiting Patan Durbar Square. Afterwards you drive to the Buddhist stupa at Boudhanath. The last stop of the day at the Hindu shrine of Pashupatinath. The tour is likely to finish around 4pm and the rest of the day is free to further explore Kathmandu.
Three major towns in the valley, Kathmandu, Patan and Bhaktapur. Each place has great artistic and architectural traditions. Kathmandu is the capital and the largest city in the country. Patan, the second largest separated from Kathmandu by Bagmati river. Bhaktapur, the third largest, is towards the eastern end of the valley. Its relative isolation reflected in its slower pace and more medieval atmosphere. In Kathmandu there is a bustle of activity especially in the bazaars and markets. While the city has expanded over the last 10 years it is still possible to see traditional buildings and temples.
We take an early morning flight by a twin propeller plane to Lukla. This is a mountain airstrip called Short Take Off and Landing known as STOL. The late Sir Edmund Hillary’s Himalayan Trust created the runway and is now one of the busiest in Nepal.The best mountain view is on the right side of the plane when we take the flight to Lukla. Along the way we watch the foothills give way to the snowline of the high Himalaya. On a clear day we see many of the world’s highest mountains in Nepal and on the border with Tibet. We see Cho Oyu (8,153m), Lhotse (8,516m), Gauri Shankar (7,145m) and the summit of Mount Everest at an altitude of 8,848m.
After landing at Lukla, we get a warm welcome from the porters. They will carry our duffel bags until we return to Lukla. Make sure you have time to get to know them and to acknowledge them even if it is through smiles and hand signs. After a cup of tea at a teahouse lodge in Lukla, the porters load up and start the trek. We leave Lukla on a typical stony path that we will follow for most of the way through the upper Khumbu. It is important to take your time and walk at a slow pace especially for the first few days on trek. We need to ease our way into the trek after days of international travel to Nepal.
The trail descends from the terraces of Lukla and we contour above the Dudh Koshi (river of milk). You pass large stones carved and painted with Buddhist prayers. We see carved mani stones and prayer wheels which are typical of Sherpa country. We show our respect and pass these sacred monuments in a clockwise direction. We hike along an undulating trail on the East bank of Dudh Koshi. We pass through several small hamlets of Chaurikharka, Cheplung, Thado Koshi and Ghat. We continue onto the village of Phakding where we stay our first night at a teahouse lodge.
Important note: there is a safety risk to consider when flying on airlines in Nepal. If you would like to avoid STOL flight from Kathmandu to Lukla there is an option to extend your trek. You can walk to Lukla in three days after driving to Salleri. Or you can follow the traditional approach from Jiri taking five to six days walking. There are also safety considerations with this option as driving in Nepal is risky too.
Today we trek to the Sherpa capital at Namche Bazaar and into the heart of the Upper Khumbu. By now we are familiar with the local protocol for passing Buddhist chortens and mani stones. We enjoy the hustle and bustle of trekking and everyday life that exists in the Khumbu. There will be animal traffic on the trail as yaks and ponies carry supplies up to Namche. For your safety keep away as they can be unpredictable and stay on the uphill side of the trail.
From Phakding we cross a suspension bridge to the East bank of Dudh Koshi and follow the river to the North. It takes 2 or 3 hours to reach Monjo where we enter Sagarmatha National Park. Along this section of the trail we get a good view of Mount Thamserku (6,608m). After descending to the river we cross a bridge to Jorsale. Shortly after leaving this village we cross back to the East side. We follow the river until the trail ascends to the Hilary Bridge. This is an impressive suspension bridge spanning a deep chasm.
The walk up the hill to Namche will be one of the harder sections of the trek. We hike at a slow pace (the Nepalese word is “bistari”). This is the key for acclimatisation and will become the norm for the trek. Halfway up the Namche hill there is a resting place for our first view of Mount Everest. The Everest summit appears behind the high ridge between Nuptse and Lhotse. As we start traversing the hill we get our first views of Namche Bazaar. This Sherpa town has buildings built on terraces in a mountain bowl. It is an impressive sight of colourful houses and lodges and prayer flags.
We stay for two nights in Namche to help acclimatisation as we are now over 3,000m in height. To help your body adapt to the high altitude we go for a walk by following the golden rule of "climb high, sleep low". We have several options for day walks from Namche. The first option is the long walk to Thame village at 3,800m and back to Namche taking between 7 to 8 hours. If you prefer to have a shorter walk you can visit the Everest View hotel also at 3,800m. This takes around 4 hours and you can visit Khumjung village too. You should listen to your body and do not push too hard on the walk. Having time to rest at high altitude is an important part of the acclimatisation process. We have enough guides so, if required, we can organise both of these walks for different members of the group.
Thame valley is less visited by trekkers as it is away from the main Everest Base Camp trail. We leave Namche on the high trail that contours out the village high above the Bhote Khosi river. We walk through rhododendron forest and then into open pastures. We pass through the small hamlets of Samsing and Thamo. It is a beautiful valley with their traditional houses and terraced fields. We are following the old Tibetan trade route. In the past Tibetans travelled over the Nangpa La to trade in Namche. Before reaching Thame the path descends to a bridge with water roaring below. On the rock there are large wall paintings of Guru Padmasambhava.
The path then climbs to the picturesque village of Thame with a backdrop of snow covered peaks. The late Sherpa Tenzing Norgay's house is near the top of the village where he lived with his first wife. Apa Sherpa who has climbed to the summit of Mount Everest twenty one times also lives in Thame village. Above the village is an important monastery over 600 years old. After lunch at a teahouse lodge we make our return trip on the same trail back to Namche.
This morning after a short climb out of the Namche bowl we contour on a trail high above the Imja Khosi. We get views of Mount Everest, Lhotse, Thamserku and also Ama Dablam (6,812m). Ama Dablam means ‘Mother's necklace’ as the ridges on each side are like the arms of a mother protecting her child. The hanging glacier is the dablam and this is the traditional pendant worn by Sherpa women. There is no doubt that the majestic Ama Dablam is one of the most beautiful mountains in the world.
We pass the two lodges at Kenjuma then make the descent on a steep trail to Phunke Tenga. We often have lunch at one of the lodges by the river. Afterwards we walk uphill through a forest for about two hours to Tengboche. The setting of Tengboche monastery is magical and it is a lovely building. At 3pm every day the monks have their prayers and it is a special experience to watch this ceremony.
After leaving Tengboche we descend through pine forest to Deboche and down to the Imja Khola. We cross a bridge over the gorge and then follow the path on the other side. There are stunning views of Ama Dablam ahead. We pass chortens and mani walls as we gain height to reach the village of Pangboche. The walk to Pangboche takes about 2 to 3 hours. Today is a shorter walk and this is to help the acclimatisation process now that we are close to 4,000m. We ascend in height at a slow rate to avoid getting altitude sickness.
After arrival at the lodge we will have lunch. In the afternoon we walk around to explore the village. Upper Pangboche is the old part of the village with traditional Sherpa houses. This is a 15 minutes hike uphill from our lodge. We visit the oldest monastery in Khumbu set among old juniper trees.
After breakfast we head off the walk towards Ama Dablam Base Camp. This is an opportunity to get away from the main trail and explore a quieter area in the Khumbu. Today's walk will also help acclimatisation and you will feel the benefits later on.
We cross Imja Khola on a suspension bridge below Pangboche. We follow a trail uphill through juniper and heather. The mountain views are a 360 degrees panorama. Ama Dablam Base Camp is at a height of 4,576m in a yak pasture beneath the west face of the mountain. The summit is 2,300m above us and from here we get a sense of the immense scale of the mountain. The climbing route follows the southwest ridge. Base Camp affords particularly fine views of Kangtega (6,783m), Thamserku (6,618m) and Taboche (6,542m). After enjoying some time at Ama Dablam Base Camp you return by the same trail back to Pangboche.
We leave Pangboche on a path that passes through yak herders huts and walled fields. We walk past the lodges at Shomare (4,010m) and Orsho (4,190m). We cross a bridge and make a final steep ascent to Dingboche. The village of Dingboche is a scenic place surrounded by high peaks. The altitude is at 4,240m and we spend two nights here for acclimatisation before moving higher.
This morning we walk up Nangkartshang Peak. We follow a steep, rocky trail above Dingboche to the summit at an altitude of 5,080m. There are fantastic views of Ama Dablam, Taboche, Cholatse and Mount Makalu to the East. By walking up Nangkartshang Peak this helps acclimatisation to high altitude. We walk back to our lodge in Pangboche for lunch. In the afternoon it is best to rest to allow your body to adapt before pushing higher tomorrow.
From Dingboche we climb the ridge behind the village next to the large chorten. The trail flattens out and we walk across the high grassy plateau above the Pheriche valley. Before Dughla we cross a bridge over a stream and then arrive at the two lodges located here. From Dughla the steep trail climbs onto the terminal moraine of the Khumbu glacier. We pass a poignant place where there is a line of memorials in tribute to the climbers who have died on Everest. The panorama of the peaks from this point is beautiful. From the memorial the route descends a little and follows the side of the valley to Lobuche. Here there is a cluster of teahouse lodges. Taboche and Nuptse Peaks are particularly spectacular from Lobuche.
Today is one of the highlights of the trek as you walk to Everest Base Camp. After an early start we follow the undulating trail along the western side of the Khumbu valley. The views today are magnificent with towering snowy peaks. The conical peak of Mount Pumori soon comes into view. The Everest view point of Kala Patar is on a lower ridge of this mountain.
After Lobuche pass (5,110m) the trail is rockier as we walk along the lateral moraine of Khumbu glacier. After about 2 to 3 hours from Lobuche we descend to a sandy basin to reach the lodges at Gorakshep. After a light lunch we set off for the walk to Everest Base Camp. This is approximately a 5 to 6 hour return trek back to Gorakshep where we sleep tonight.
After crossing the sandy flats at Gorakshep we climb back onto the lateral moraine. After a couple of hours we drop down onto the glacier. The trail then winds up and down and through icy seracs to Everest Base Camp. From here there are fantastic close up views of the Khumbu icefall. In spring season Base Camp is a tented village with mountaineers from around the world. We celebrate our achievement and enjoy the moment. Afterwards we retrace our trail back to Gorakshep.
In the morning at first light we leave the lodge to climb up to the summit of Kalapatar at an altitude of 5,545m. We do not leave earlier in the morning as it is too cold and walking in the darkness is risky. Kalapatar is the highest point reached on the Everest Base Camp trek. It is hard work walking uphill when at high altitude and you will be out of breath even if well acclimatised. The walk to the top takes about 2 to 3 hour. It is well worth the effort for the great views of the summit of Mount Everest. There are other Himalayan giants of Pumori, Changtse, Nuptse and Lhotse. We spend time on the summit to allow you to sit down and reflect. The majestic beauty of the mountains and ice flutes surrounds us.
We return down the same trail back to the teahouse lodge at Gorakshep. We have lunch and then head off for our return to Lobuche
From Lobuche we walk downhill and after 45 minutes we turn off the main trail. From this junction we traverse around a spur above the Chola Tscho lake and follow the valley to Dzongla. This is a beautiful spot at the base of the Cho La pass surrounded by high mountains. We see the impressive peaks of Taboche and Cholatse with Ama Dablam visible down the valley.
Cho La connects Everest Base Camp trail to the Gokyo valley. Crossing the pass is a scenic route without any serious technical difficulties. The hardest section is the descent from Cho La and for about 200m we scramble down a steep rocky slope. Once over the pass the trail descends to Dragnag.
Bad weather and poor conditions can make this a challenging route. If there is deep snow on the ground we may not be able to cross the pass in a safe manner. It is for this reason we choose the optimal dates for success based on our experience of trekking in Nepal. We also include micro crampons, trekking poles and gaiters on our kit list. This personal equipment will increase chances of crossing the pass in marginal conditions.
From Dragnag we cross the Ngozumba Glacier and hike up to the lodges at Gokyo.
We have an early start for the climb up to the top of Gokyo Ri at an altitude of 5,357m. The view from the top is generally considered to be the best of the Everest range. Gokyo Ri is further away from Mount Everest than the viewpoint at Kalapatar. We have a wider panoramic view of the high Himalaya with more peaks seen compared to Everest Base Camp trek. We get back at the lodge for a late breakfast. The rest of the day we explore the Gokyo valley following the Ngozumba Glacier to the North. We walk towards Cho Oyu Base Camp passing the Gokyo lakes. Few trekking groups venture into this area so it is likely you will have it to ourselves to enjoy.
Today we walk up Renjo La at an altitude of 5,345m. As we are well acclimatised by now the ascent will feel less strenuous than our previous walks over 5,000m. At the top of the pass we have another wonderful view of Everest, Nuptse, Lhotse and Makalu. On the other side of the pass we see the Rolwaling peaks. The trail descends down past lakes and yak pastures. We join the Thame valley and this is one of the main trading routes with Tibet over the Nangpa La.
We descend from our lodge at Langden down the Thame valley. This is less visited by trekkers as it is away from the main Everest Base Camp trail. The path descends to the picturesque village of Thame with a backdrop of snow covered peaks. The late Sherpa Tenzing Norgay's house is near the top of the village where he lived with his first wife. Apa Sherpa who has climbed to the summit of Mount Everest twenty one times also lives in Thame village. Above the village is an important monastery over 600 years old.
After leaving Thame the path descends to a bridge with water roaring below. On the rock there are large wall paintings of Guru Padmasambhava. We follow the trail down the valley following the Bhote Khosi river. We walk through open pastures and pass through the small hamlets of Samsing and Thamo. It is a beautiful valley with their traditional houses and terraced fields. We enter Namche on a high trail then walk to our lodge.
From Namche we continue our descent down the trail following the Dudh Koshi valley. This is along the same trail as our ascent and the villages we pass through will be familiar. At Chaurikharka we start the ascent of the final hill of the trek to reach Lukla. On arriving at Numbur Lodge we can enjoy our last evening with the guides and wonderful porters.
If the weather is clear in Lukla then we will get a morning flight back to Kathmandu. We will meet you at the airport and drive you back to the hotel. You can then spend the rest of the day doing what you please.
Today is a free day to relax in Kathmandu after the trek. You can do some independent sightseeing around the city. You can enjoy spending time at the restaurants and cafes. The reason for having an extra day as a buffer is in case of any delays or cancellations flying back from Lukla. This helps to minimise the risk of missing your international flight back home.
Transfer to Kathmandu airport for the flight back home. End of trip.
Dates & Prices
|Dates||Trip Leader||Price||Single Supplement: Room/Tent||Availability|
|Dates 02 Apr 2022 to 24 Apr 2022||Trip Leader Local Leader||Price US$2,695pp|| Single Supplement: |
Room/Tent US$240pp / NA
|Availability 2 Left to Guarantee||Book Now|
|Dates 01 Oct 2022 to 23 Oct 2022||Trip Leader Local Leader||Price US$2,695pp|| Single Supplement: |
Room/Tent US$240pp / NA
|Availability Guaranteed||Book Now|
For private and bespoke trip, please contact usEnquire Here
- Internal flight to/from Lukla and Kathmandu including baggage allowance of 15kg for your main bag checked into the hold and 5kg for day pack carried with you inside the aircraft.
- All transfers including airport collections.
- One day sightseeing in Kathmandu with Nepalese cultural guide and private vehicle.
- Twin share room at Hotel Tibet or Hotel Ambassador in Kathmandu.
- Twin share room with common bathroom while on trek.
- Breakfast only at hotel in Kathmandu, all meals included while on trek. Trek meals include breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea and biscuits plus two course dinner (soup and main meal) plus up to two cups of hot drinks per meal.
- All trekking arrangements including permits and fees, trekking guide(s) and porter(s). We provide one trekking guide for group size of two people and two guides for a group size of three people and three guides for group size of six people plus.
- Bespoke weather forecasts for Everest region from EverestWeather.com throughout the duration of this trek.
- Thuraya satellite phone to ensure our guides have reliable communications with us for logistics, planning and group safety.
- Everest trekking map given to you on arrival to Kathmandu.
- Rubberised luggage tags posted to you before departure.
- Full financial protection for all monies paid to us through our membership of Association of Bonded Travel Operators Trust (our ABTOT membership number is 5365) and having an Air Travel Organiser’s Licence (our ATOL number is 10921).
- Pre departure support and advice from The Mountain Company by email, phone or face to face meetings in London. After booking with us we will send our comprehensive “Nepal Pre Trip Information” notes.
What's Not Included
- International flight to/from Kathmandu.
- Travel & trekking insurance.
- Nepal visa for 30 days.
- Lunch and evening meals in Kathmandu.
- Personal clothing & equipment, please see the Appendix for suggested kit list.
- Tips (guidance on amounts included in our “Nepal Pre Trip Information” notes).
- If you have to wait in Kathmandu at the beginning of the trip due to delays in flying into Lukla STOL mountain airstrip the cost for your overnight accommodation in Kathmandu is not included so you will have to pay extra for this.
- If there are cancellations with the airplanes flying into Lukla it may be possible to fly in a helicopter. There would be an extra cost for this service between US$200 to US$500 per person depending on which helicopter company is used and the demand at the time.
- Other items not listed in “What is included”.
Tea House Lodge in Everest region
In a tea house lodge in Nepal there are twin share rooms with a common bathroom and a heated communal dining room. We inspect and select the best lodges in each location.
We provide all meals at the lodges. This includes breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea and biscuits plus two course dinner (soup and main meal). You can choose your dishes for all meals from the menu. We also provide two hot drinks included per meal.
Hotel Tibet in Kathmandu
Hotel Tibet is in Lazimpat next to the Radisson. This is our usual hotel for our standard trips in Nepal.
We have used Hotel Tibet for over 15 years and our clients have enjoyed staying at this property. It has a good location, comfortable rooms and high level of service. There is a garden terrace next to the restaurant on the ground floor. On the fifth floor there is a roof terrace with the Yeti Bar overlooking the city.
Typical Day On a Teahouse Trek in Nepal
We provide a comfortable experience on our teahouse lodge-style treks. Our team works hard to support you so that you can relax and enjoy trekking in Nepal. The lodges provide your meals in a communal dining room. You will sleep in private rooms with a shared bathroom. There is a range in standard and service in teahouse lodges depending on location. i.e. lodges at higher altitude and places with fewer trekkers tend to have more basic facilities.
The day starts with getting up in your room shared with another trekker in our group. Before heading for breakfast you pack your overnight gear into your duffel bag. You would have given your breakfast orders to the guide to pass onto the kitchen last night. At the designated time the group will assemble in the dining room to eat breakfast. The menu has a range of items to choose from such as porridge, cereals, chapattis, and a choice of egg dishes. There is also the choice of tea or coffee plus other hot drinks like the popular ginger, lemon honey drink.
While the group is having breakfast the porters arrange their loads and set off in the cool of the morning. After breakfast, between 7am and 8am, we start walking. The pace of the trek is moderate as there is plenty of time in the itinerary to reach the lodge for tonight. There will be plenty of time to enjoy the scenery, take photos and explore the local villages. Lunch will be around midday at a teahouse lodge by the side of the trail.
After lunch, we continue the walk and on most days we arrive at the lodge by mid-afternoon. On arrival, you will get a hot drink and biscuits. For dinner, you get a two-course dinner (soup and main meal). The menus are quite standard with a range of dishes such as dal bhat, momos and the famous Sherpa stew. Dal bhat is a Nepalese dish of rice and lentils with vegetable curry. It is also possible to order spaghetti and pasta; pizzas; vegetable burgers and chips and fried rice. We also provide up to two cups of hot drinks per meal.
After supper, the leaders will discuss the plan for the next day. Afterwards, people might stay in the dining room chatting about the day’s events or playing cards. After a tiring day, most people head to their rooms quite early for the night. Tomorrow is likely to be very similar to today!
We cater for a variety of dietary requirements. There are always meals that are suitable for vegetarians. During booking, we find out if you have any dietary needs and agree upon meal plans before departure. If you have any questions about the food provided please get in touch with us to discuss further.
You can read more about Teahouse Trekking in Nepal on our Blog. This article explains the facilities available at a teahouse lodge. It also describes the advantages and disadvantages of camping style treks. Plus the amount to budget for extra costs. We also touch upon what to pack for a teahouse trek, safety and security plus responsible use of the lodge.
We bring a Thuraya satellite phone for logistical, safety and personal use. Personal calls charged at £4 (US$5 or €4.50) per minute and £2 (US$3 €4.50) to send and receive SMS text.
Kit List for Everest High Passes trek
This is the mandatory kit list for the safety of everyone in the group and to ensure a successful trek. You must have the following items tailored for Everest High Passes trek. The group leader will check your gear in Kathmandu before departure for the trek.
As a reminder, the weather on this trek will vary season to season and day to day as you ascend to higher elevations. At the start of the trek you will experience warm conditions with temperatures up to 20 Celsius. You experience the coldest temperatures in Gorak Shep at an altitude of 5,200m. Overnight lows here will be down to around -15 Celsius.
You should bring a rucsac or backpack for gear required during the day. Your pack should contain items such as warm clothes, jacket, camera, water bottles, personal first aid kit and snacks. The weight limit is 5kg. A porter will carry the rest of your personal equipment packed in a duffel or kit bag. The weight limit for your duffel bag is 15kg. Please mark your bag on the outside for easy identification.
Print the kit list and tick items off as you pack them then weigh your kit bag before you come on trek.
- Walking Boots. A pair of water repellent boots with ankle support. Boots must be in good condition, the best approach is to get new boots and break in before the trek.
- Trail shoes. Used around the lodge.
- Walking socks.
- Gaiters. A pair of knee high gaiters used to keep boots dry if walking through snow or on wet ground.
- Waterproof and Windproof jacket (with hood) and trousers (goretex or similar). For use if it rains or snows during the trek and in windy conditions.
- Trekking trousers. (eg. Mountain Hardwear Mesa V2 or The North Face Paramount Peak).
- Soft Shell Trousers.
- Long sleeve tops or shirts (not cotton).
- Micro fleece.
- Mid to heavyweight fleece or synthetic/ primaloft top.
- Sleeveless/ gilet or body warmer type fleece / synthetic top. This will help keep your core warm while not bulking when layering up. Gilet used in combination with base layers, other fleeces and down jacket. This provides the most warmth and insulation.
- Thermals or base layer for top & bottom (merino wool or synthetic).
- Fleece or synthetic leggings. Worn around the camp or added as a layer when the temperatures start to drop higher up.
- Medium weight down jacket.
Head and Gloves
- Fleece gloves.
- Warms mittens and/or gloves.
- Wool or fleece hat.
- Sun hat.
- Bandana or scarf (eg. Buff Headwear).
- Head torch. Bring extra batteries.
- Sunglasses. The lenses need to be Category 4 rated. They should have side protection or wraparound design.
For crossing the passes
- Trekking poles (Black Diamond with “Flick Lock” are best). Two poles are mandatory for your safety. These will be helpful on steep sections of the trail and river crossings. Also for walking on snow or ice higher up.
- Kahtoola Microspikes or YakTrax Summits. These are for your security when descending passes with snowy or icy conditions. They fit onto your walking boots.
- Gaiters. A pair of knee high gaiters used to keep boots dry if walking through snow or on wet ground.
- Sleeping bag. Overnight lows down to -15 Celsius. It is possible to rent a bag from Shonas Rental in Kathmandu.
- Fleece or silk liner for your sleeping bag. A liner protects your sleeping bag from getting dirty. Also helps by adding extra insulation to keep you warm at night.
- Day pack. Recommended size is around 30 litres. You need to have enough space to carry water bottles, camera, snacks and extra clothing. The pack should have a good waist belt. It is also a good idea to bring a rain cover to keep the contents dry.
- Trekking poles (Black Diamond with “Flick Lock” are best). Two poles are mandatory for your safety. These will be helpful on steep sections of the trail and river crossings. Also for walking on snow or ice higher up.
- Stuff sacks for keeping your gear dry and organised. Or even better are fold dry bags such as from Exped.
- Two water bottles. Nalgene wide mouth bottles are the best. You may use a hydration pack lower down but the tube will freeze in the cold so ensure you still have two water bottles.
- Pee bottle. Recommended as means you do not have to get up to find the toilet tent at night! For men you can use an old water bottle. For women take a look at SheWee.
- Sunscreen and lip salve with a high SPF.
- Water purification tablets (Pristine, Biox Aqua or Aqua Mira).
- Favourite snack food.
- Books and cards etc.
- Camera with spare batteries and memory cards.
- Insurance certificate.
- Earplugs (optional).
- Baby wipes (optional).
- Hand sanitizer. Keep this in your day pack for use after a toilet break during the trek or before eating any snacks. We provide sanitizer for use before meals.
- Duffel bag for your personal gear on the trek. Will be carried by a porter. Rugged and waterproof made of a plastic material. Size 80-100 litres. Eg. Mountain Equipment or Rab. Bring a small combination padlock to secure the bag.
- Travel clothes. You will need casual clothing for air travel days and time spent in Kathmandu.
- Toiletry bag with soap, travel towel, toilet paper, toothbrush etc.
We provide a comprehensive group first aid kit. Please bring personal medications and other items you might use such as:
- Any personal medications.
- Blister treatment (Compeed patches are the best)
- Rehydration powder (eg Dioralyte).
- Analgesics (paracetamol, ibuprofen and aspirin).
- Plasters and zinc oxide tape.
- Throat lozenges.
- Diamox (helps with acclimatisation).
Risk assessment for Everest treks
You should be aware trekking in a developing country involves a risk of personal injury or death. You must accept these risks and be responsible for your own actions and involvement. Adventure travel requires an open and flexible attitude. You may experience extreme conditions and unpredictable weather. There could be last minute changes to the itinerary beyond our control. The ability to work in a team is an important aspect of our trips.
We have performed a threat and risk assessment for our Everest trek. Our trips have a degree of risk. This is part of the attraction of adventure travel and why so many people choose to join this type of holiday. By identifying the hazards we assess the level of risk. We have control measures in places to reduce this happening or to reduce the impact.
Our risk assessment is available to clients on request. We have listed below a summary of the significant risks and hazards identified by us:
- Falls and trips resulting in physical injury eg. slipping on ice or falling off the path.
- Altitude illness including but not limited to AMS, HACE and HAPE.
- Climatic injuries (dehydration, sunburn, heat exhaustion, hypothermia or heat stroke). Please note during the months of April and October it will be very hot and humid for the first three days of the trek.
- Crossing a river with no bridge resulting in drowning and/ or a fall.
- Rock fall and landslides.
- Snow and ice avalanches.
- Lightning strike.
- Wildlife, pack animals (e.g. donkeys or horses) or stray dogs. Pack animals can knock people off the path. Dogs can attack and bite. Discuss rabies vaccination with your doctor.
- Risk of fire in the hotel or lodge.
- Endemic local diseases. Discuss vaccinations with your doctor before departure.
- Physiological injury. Such as heart attack, appendicitis, hernia, toothache etc. in a remote area.
- Road traffic or flight accidents. Read paragraph “Internal flight".
- Contaminated food and/ or water.
This trip visits a remote area. You are away from the usual emergency services and medical facilities. Evacuation for a serious injury requiring hospitalisation could take up to several days. This delay could impede your ensuing recovery. Helicopters are the usual means of evacuation. They are not always available or hindered by poor weather and flying conditions.
Internal Flights in Nepal
Flights from Nepal’s Short Take-Off & Landing (“STOL”) airstrips are dependent on weather. Delays often happen if there is poor visibility or high winds.For our itineraries with flights to or from STOL we include one extra day in Kathmandu at the end of the trip. This is in case of delays flying back. If the delays are longer we will help reschedule your international flights. There is likely to be a fee charged by the airline for this. You also have to pay for costs incurred in Kathmandu as a result of the delay such as accommodation and meals.
You should read the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (“FCDO”) travel advice to Nepal. For their latest advice take a look at their Safety & Security section under Air Travel. There have been some recent air accidents in Nepal. The European Union has banned Nepalese airlines from flying to Europe. For more information on Nepal’s air safety profile take a look at Aviation Safety Network.
Weather and conditions for Everest High Passes trek
Everest High Passes trek has a wide range of temperatures. This depends on the season, altitude and time of day. Below Namche Bazaar the nights will be cool around 5 Celsius. During the day temperatures sometimes rise to 20 Celsius. At higher altitudes temperatures range from about 15 Celsius to -15 Celsius.
The trekking season in Nepal is late September to May. October and November is generally recognised as having the best weather. Spring is a popular time of year with warmer weather than in Autumn. Also there is the advantage of seeing spring flowers and rhododendrons in bloom.
We have chosen the dates for optimal conditions on the high passes. By April and May in Spring season the weather is warmer and the snowline is higher than March. This decreases the chance of snow blocking the Cho La pass and the Renjo La pass. In Autumn season we organise the trek during October also because the weather is warmer. Later into November the temperatures cool off and there is a higher chance of snow at 5,000m altitude.
We have written a blog article When is the best time to go trekking in Nepal Himalaya? This has information about the weather and conditions in Spring and Autumn seasons. It also explains the differences between the trekking regions of Nepal.
Suggested reading and maps for Everest treks
Nepal Trekking Map Himalayan Maphouse Scale: 1:900,000 This map will be included in your welcome pack when you arrive in Nepal.
Mount Everest Schweizerische Stiftung fur Alpine Forschung (Swiss Foundation For Alpine Research) 1:50,000
Mount Everest National Geographic Society 1:50,000
Everest- 50 years on top of the world by George Band
Above the clouds by Anatoli Boukreev
Eric Shipton- Everest and beyond by Peter Steele
Touching my father’s soul by Jamling Tenzing Norgay
Into Thin Air by John Krakauer
The Ascent of Rum Doodle by WE Bowman
Review by Kellogg on 18/10/2019
Don't die wondering! A trekking expedition to climb to the top of Gokyo Ri, which gave us the most staggering view of the Himalayan landscape, with obviously Mt Everest dominating the skyline. The journey was punctuated with rest/acclimatisation days to allow us to adjust to the change in altitude. A system that many other trekkers didn't seem to adhere to, sometimes with consequences that meant airlift removal from the peaks. Tour very well constructed with more than adequate guide and porter. Recommended through a mutual friend. Responsible ethics, which involve helping families of porters and guides in need. Also a policy of collecting any discarded rubbish which had been discarded en route. ...Show more Show less
Review by Andy H on 22/10/2019
Words cannot describe the experience The quest was to set eyes upon Sagarmatha and for days we trekked up the valleys to Gokyo. Wonderful, stunning scenery of the Himalayas as we climbed. Mountain names that months ago meant nothing now stood proudly before us. It was truly an incredible sight and one etched deep into the millstone grit. Cho Oyu, Makalu, Lhotse, Mera peak, Nuptse, Khang Tega, Ama Dablam, Thamserku and of course, Sagarmatha. They will remain with me forever. The trek was 12 months in the planning and Roland and The Mountain Company were with us every step of the way. The communication was first class with no question too small. The whole operation was seamless, with transfers, pick ups, accommodation, advice, guidance and of course the Sherpa guides and porters. There is nothing but positives for The Mountain Company and I would highly recommend them to other trekkers. Should I visit this wonderful part of the world again, The Mountain Company would be my only choice. Thank you so much, Roland, the team, Dorjee and Dawa. 'Don't die wondering' ...Show more Show less