Thursday, May 27, 2010

Everest Base Camp Trek: Kathmandu


As promised, the second installment of my series of posts on my recent trek through the Himalaya has been posted on Gadling. This time out, I'm writing about Kathmandu, which really is the gateway to the Himalaya.

One of the most challenging aspect of a trip to Nepal is the rather long travel times just to get there, at least for anyone coming from the United States. There is something a bit unsettling about leaving on a Friday and arriving at your destination on Sunday. In all, it was approximately 32 hours of travel time to get to Kathmandu, which can be tiring in and of itself.

Once you arrive, it can be a bit overwhelming. It is a hot, dry place and there are few creature comforts, even in the hotels. We stayed a place called the Manag Hotel, which was serviceable, but certainly not the best accommodations that I've stayed in. When the blackouts hit, the rooms would become quite warm, giving you a good excuse to hit the streets and escape from the place, even if for a little while.

Fortunately, the Manang was located right in the Thamel district, which made it easy to shop for gear and other goods, while finding places to eat and exploring the local culture. The shops in that region has all kinds of bargains for last minute gear shopping, but you do have to be careful that you're not buying a cheap knockoff. Sometimes these were very easy to spot, but others, not so much.

Kathmandu is just the start of the adventure however, and while it is an interesting place, we were all eager to hit the mountains. Those stories are coming in the days ahead, and I'll keep posting links to them as I post at Gadling, while sharing some different thoughts on the trip here.

I hope you enjoy the series.

19 comments:

bpanalytics said...

Hi,

Tomorrow is the anniversary of Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay’s Everest conquest. We have some great footage in our archive of Hillary’s world publicity tour of 1953, recently released online. Here’s a blog post we’ve written on the matter with links to the videos - http://britishpathe.wordpress.com/2010/05/28/edmund-hillary-aint-no-mountain-high-enough/

It would be great if you could let your online community know about us. Do you have an area of your site, as well as a Facebook/Twitter/Blog, where you could post this link up please?

Thanks,

Reach Summit said...

Kathmandu is a magic place. It is a colorful city with splendid temples and incredible encounters...

Nepal Trekking said...

Treks to Everest Base Camp vary in duration but to ensure you acclimatise properly to the high altitude and lack of oxygen, and enjoy your adventure to the full, real buzz recommends a trek duration of about 14-18 days. In order to trek to Everest Base Camp you must go

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First of all i would like to thank you for the great and informative entry. I have to admit that I have never heard about this information. I have noticed many new facts for me. Thanks a lot for sharing this useful and attractive information and I will be waiting for other interesting posts from you in the nearest future.

buy protein said...

First of all i would like to thank you for the great and informative entry. I have to admit that I have never heard about this information. I have noticed many new facts for me. Thanks a lot for sharing this useful and attractive information and I will be waiting for other interesting posts from you in the nearest future.

Jaz said...

Hostel have kitchen and communal bathrooms.

Buzios Pousadas

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lumle said...

wonderful share , i must say great work

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hike himalayaas said...

There is no substitute for personalized attention. I traveled to Nepal to visit Everest Base Camp. I traveled alone and had certain trepidation about traveling on my own, but I also knew I wanted to escape the pressures of trekking in a large group. Altitude and safety are paramount on mountain treks and I did not want to end-up hyperventilating trying to keep-up with faster, fitter, trekkers.
Even though, I have altitude experience, I relied heavily on my guide's advice regarding what to eat, pace, and hydration. I have climbed and summitted Mt. Kilimanjaro, so I was confident I could complete this trek, but nothing can prepare you for the terrain of the Hymalayas. it is truly a humbling experience.
Mr. Adhikari came highly recommended by other trekkers, who were only too willing to write positive and detailed letters of recommendation. I found that all their recommendations were more than true. Mr. Adhikari has been to Everest Base Camp more than 50 plus times, as a woman traveling alone, I found his level of professionalism refreshing. I cannot count the times, Mr. Adhikari truly saved me from my inexperienced trekking self. Anything from ensuring I would.
not be run over by a Yak, horse, or donkey to keeping me focused on the difficult terrain, and somehow ensuring I stopped long enough to enjoy the scenery (in spite of my exhaustion). I shudder to think what my trek would have been like if I'd been just another trekker in a large group. I have to comment that I have never been so healthy-stomach wise at altitude.
Mr. Adhikari explains that when organizing for larger groups, he makes provisions for trekkers like me who tend to walk at a slower pace. I thought for sure that, this time, my ambition had superseded my ability, but thanks to Mr. Adhikari, my long time dream of seeing Everest Base Camp first hand came true. I was able to spend time in the rarified air and observe camp life, took plenty of pictures, and asked Mr. Adhikari numerous questions about his experiences around the area.
I was very aware of the economic implications of traveling with a Nepali Operator vs. a foreign trekking company. I wanted my trip not to only be a self-serving adventure, but numerous travel books suggest that traveling with a Nepali Operator does ensure more of the money goes and stays into the Nepali economy. I was unsure how the whole experience would unfold, but I am staying here and going to Annapurna Base Camp with the same operator. Mr. adhikari seems to be grounded on the mountain community ad well as in Kathmandu. It was reassuring to see he has good and long standing relationships with other guides and the mountain community.

Visited April 2012.
email-:sanjib-adhikari@hotmail.com

jonalyndislag said...
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