On this day 60 years ago, Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay became the very first people to reach the summit of Mount Everest; a pretty amazing achievement by anyone’s standards.
To celebrate their accomplishment, we’re taking a look at how you can get in on the Everest action, on a trek to Everest Base Camp.
There’s no doubt about it, the trek to Base Camp isn’t for the faint hearted, it’s tough, but the rewards are massive. Imagine coming so breathtakingly close to the top of the world, it’s one of those once in a life time adventures that you’ll be replaying in your mind for the rest of your days.
If you’re interested in adventure, then Everest is within your reach….
Spotlight on Everest Base Camp
How should I Prepare?
It will come as no shock that a trek to Everest Base Camp is going to be hard going. The camp itself sits at 5,364m above sea level, slightly smaller than Kilimanjaro at 5,895, so don’t be fooled by the name, while it maybe classed as the base of the main Everest trek, it’s still a serious adventure.
That said, contrary to popular belief, you don’t need to be one of life’s natural fitness fanatics to take on the trek. If you take it slow, and don’t try to push yourself too hard or too fast you’ll be fine. The biggest tip here is not to push yourself out of your comfort zone in terms of what you can do.
Make sure you attempt the trek as part of an organised tour so that you have a professional and experienced Base Camp guide with you at all times and, if you want to make things easier on yourself, start increasing your fitness level in the weeks leading up to your trek by taking on extra cardio exercise such as running, cycling, swimming, and hill climbing. Even if you can just do 3 hours a week for 5 or 6 weeks before you go you’ll notice a real difference in your stamina.
How Can I Make This Happen?
It’s absolutely recommended that you make the trek using a reputable tour company. Even though the trek is safe, it’s important that you have a knowledgeable, experienced guide with you, should anything go wrong.
Your guide will be able to tell you exactly where you should and shouldn’t walk, they’ll be able to advise you on the best way to beat altitude sickness and they’ll be watching over you and your fellow climbers at all times to ensure you’re coping well with the trek. A trip such as Everest Adventure provides the services of a reputable, local guide for the duration of your trip.
Also, by booking yourself onto an organised trip you’ll received a full itinerary and list of things to bring to make sure you are fully prepared for the trek ahead of you.
When Should I Go?
There is no bad time to make the trek to Base Camp, however, it’s widely accepted that March to May is best in terms of weather, providing the most comfortable conditions for all that walking; between May and September the weather can be a little warm when trekking.
September to December is also a great time to take the trek as conditions are much milder than in the summer. During December the temperature starts to plummet making January and February the coldest time of the year to trek – if your considering trekking to Base Camp in these months make sure you bring extra clothes for warmth. The winter months may be cold but the trail will be much quieter making for a much more peaceful experience and some incredible snowy views.
How Can I make the most of My Time on the Mountain?
Here are some tips for making your trek to Base Camp as comfortable and easy as it possibly can be:
Travel light – Consider what you are actually going to use, there’s no point hindering yourself with a backpack jammed full of things you might need ‘just in case’. Warm clothes, gloves, hat, sun lotion, lip balm, mini first aid kit, thick socks are all things that could be seen as essential. Make up, iPad and ten tonnes of shampoo are not.
Don’t rush – That’s when accidents happen. Take your time, enjoy your surroundings and watch where you step. No ones going to leave you there, and you’ve come all this way you may as well take it all in properly!
Beware of the sun – Yes, it’s going to be cold, but the sun will be bright, so make sure you have sun lotion for your face and any other exposed areas of skin.
Bring some snacks – Not loads, but a few bars of chocolate will give you that boost of energy when you need that little bit extra.
Keep hydrated! – Keep drinking water to keep your energy levels up, if you get dehydrated, you’ll find it harder and may experience altitude sickness.