Trekking to Everest Base Camp is always the best option for trekking in Nepal. When you think of Everest region trekking, it is always to hit the Everest Base Camp but the question here is “do you also want to hike to Gokyo Ri and Lakes? Do you want to conquer one of the highest passes of Everest? Step On Himalaya has prepared this itinerary as a single trek naming “EBC via Gokyo Lakes and Cho La Pass”.
Gokyo Ri is one of the less trodden trekking trails in Everest. No doubt, the natural environ of this area is serene and pure. The grander sights of Mt. Everest from the top of the Gokyo Ri is immense. The first five awesome alpines Gokyo Lakes are on the way. One of the highest peaks, Mt. Cho Oyu along with other highest peaks like Mt. Everest, Mt. Makalu, Mt. Lhotse towering in front of you gives a thrilling feeling. The ads on attraction are the Ngozumpa glacier famous as the longest glacier in the Himalayas. You can see the turquoise-colored lakes arranged in a series in the vast Gokyo valley. The scenic view of all these Gokyo Lakes is simply eye-catching.
Cho La pass, another highlight of the Everest Region has steep trails and really requires a strong physical endurance. But once you reach the Cho La pass and witness the view of the soaring snowy peaks and the cool alpine surrounding, you will be blessed and the feeling of feat is incomparable.
Hike to both Gokyo Ri and Cho La pass is exciting. To reach both the destinations, you must visit via Namche Bazaar, the oldest and the busiest hub of Everest/Khumbu region. There are facilitated guest houses, restaurants, Internet Cafe, Government offices, ATMs and shops in the local market. You can spend you suffice time going around the Namche Bazar. Here, Step On Himalaya recommends you to spend at least two nights if possible for acclimatization in Namche Bazaar. Visiting Sagarmatha National Park is another highlight of this trek.
The Kalapatthar and the Gokyo Ri are both the extraordinary viewpoints of Everest Region offering the astounding sceneries of the mighty Himalayas glittering in white snow. En route, you can also see the Khumbu Icefall. This trek will be the lifetime opportunity to see the natural wonders in so close distance. The Tengboche Monastery being the largest monastery of Everest/Khumbu region gives a colossal spiritual feeling. You can extend your trek by communicating with the trekking leader who is the sole representative of Step On Himalaya. There are other itineraries like Everest Base Camp Trek – 16 days or Everest Base Camp Short Trek – 14 days, if you are short of time. Step On Himalaya is ready to serve you the best in either choice. Everest Base Camp Trek via Gokyo Lakes and Cho La pass will reward you with the unforgettable memories and enthralling experiences.
After arriving at Tribhuwan International Airport in Kathmandu, you will be welcomed by the representative from Step On Himalaya and escort you to the designated hotel. After completing checking-in, you either can take rest or have an evening walk and visit the office of Step On Himalaya (if you arrive during the daytime). Overnight in the hotel.
After early morning breakfast, you will be getting ready for the Sightseeing tour organized by Step On Himalaya to the historical and cultural heritage of Kathmandu, mainly listed under the UNESCO World Heritage sites. Those are the historic Kathmandu Durbar Square, the holy Hindu temple of Lord Pashupatinath, the Swayambhunath (the Monkey temple) and the oldest Buddhist shrine – Boudhanath. After completing the tour, the trekking gears and equipment are checked by the staff, especially the trekking guide/leader of Step On Himalaya. Other required documentation can be completed in the office and then back to the Hotel for the overnight stay.
The scary flight to Lukla from Kathmandu takes about 30 minutes, hovering at the height of 9,186 feet. This is also the most exciting air route in the world offering the striking views of stunning landscapes surrounded by the snowy Himalayan peaks. Lukla being the gateway of the Everest destination is the start of the trek. You will meet the trekking leader assigned by Step On Himalaya to accompany and take care of your needs and comfort during the trek. As the ascent starts, you will be enchanted by the amazing beautiful views of the Himalayas. Cheplung village gives a fascinating view of Mt. Khumbila (18900 ft) that is purely untouched by any climber. From Cheplung, you will descend slowly until you arrive at Phakding. Overnight stay at Phakding.
You will hike up through a beautiful, dense pine forest following the trail up towards northern to Benkar valley. After crossing Dudh Koshi river, you will pass by Chumoa to Monjo which is the entrance of Sagarmatha National Park. You will cross a suspension bridge and pass by Jorsale village walking along the Dudh Koshi river and the Bhote Koshi river. There is a steep ahead before arriving at the Namche Bazaar – the heart of Everest Region. As you get close to Namche Bazaar and if the weather is clear, you will be pleased with the amazing scenes of the Mt. Everest and Mt. Lhotse. Overnight stay at Namche Bazaar.
Namche Bazaar is the center of Everest/Khumbu region. The government offices, ATMs, shops, restaurants, Internet café, and local market are centralized here. You can do several things here to spend a day acclimatizing. In the meantime, you can hike to Sagarmatha National Park early morning to catch the blissful sunrise and the views of the Mt. Everest, Mt. Lhotse, Mt. Nuptse, Mt. Thamserku, Mt. Ama Dablam, Mt. Kongde and others. Also in the daytime, if you want, a short trek to explore the Khumjung village can be attempted. Overnight stay at Namche Bazaar.
Today’s destination is from Namche Bazaar to Phortse Thanga. You will first climb up the Khumjung hill gradually and then climb down to the village until a broad valley arrives. From there, you will turn north following the trail of Dudh Koshi river. A beautiful chorten is at the top of the ridge at the height of 3973m. You will then visit the Mohang - birthplace of the Lama (believe – he was reincarnation) of the Rongbuk Monastery of Tibet. It is strongly assumed Buddhism was introduced in the Khumbu region. After walking some time, there is a series of steep twists down towards a sandy slope towards the Dudh Koshi river. Overnight stay at Phortse Thanga, nearby the river.
It is an ascent from Phortse Thanga to Machhermo for about 4 to 5 hours. There is a beautiful rhododendron forest and you will pass through a lovely waterfall before arriving at Tongba village. Continuing the walk uphill, you will pass through settlements like Dhole, Labarma, Luza villages. A small Chorten is built just before the Luza village. Today’s whole trail will follow the Dudh Koshi river. Overnight at Machhermo.
You will begin the trek by ascending a ridge offering a superb scenery of the Kangtaiga valley and up towards the Cho Oyu. As you walk on, the valley broadens passing through Phangkha. It is the death spot of 40 people killed by an avalanche in 1995. As you walk down towards the riverbank, you will approach the Ngozumpa Glacier’s terminal moraine. Upon crossing the iron bridge, the walk will lead past the first lake called Longpongo situated at the height of 4690m. Here you will see the Lama Footprints on a stone. There is a second lake named Taboche Tsho ahead with an amazing turquoise color sparkling in the sunlight. A little ahead, there is the third lake linked by a surging brook and the Gokyo village is located by the side of the third lake with the background of Mt. Cho Oyu offering a spectacular view.
An important day at Gokyo Valley for acclimatization. Gokyo Ri is a small hill just above the village of Gokyo. Hike to Gokyo Ri in the early morning offers you a scenic view of the whole Khumbu region. The higher you go; the more enchanting views are seen. Four out of the seven highest mountains of Nepal i.e. Mt. Everest, Mt. Cho Oyu, Mt. Lhotse, Mt. Makalu can be seen. Upon reaching the Thonak Tsho, the fourth lake, you can spend some time in the serene environment there and return following the trail to the third lake. If you like to go up higher and the time lets, you can destine till the fifth lake, Ngozumba Tsho. The view from here is another awesome attraction. The Ngozumba glacier it the longest glacier of the Himalayas. Overnight stay at Gokyo valley.
You can opt for Gokyo Ri today if you couldn’t do it on Day-09. It is a steep uphill demanding strenuous walk for about 3 to 4 hours to the summit but the views of Gokyo village from here is so rewarding that you will not regret the tiring hike. The awesome panorama of the snowy mountains like Everest, Kusum Kanguru, Kangtega, Thamserku, Cholatse, Taboche, Makalu, Nuptse, Lhotse, Changtse and Pumori. The views of sunrays touching the snowy Everest giving the golden glittering look mesmerize the trekkers. You will then go across the mountain edges and then arrive at Thagnak. Today will be a short hike with a proper rest during the afternoon. Get ready for the upcoming elevations. Overnight stay at Thagnak.
Today’s destination is Cho La Pass. It is one the toughest part of this trip as it is steeper and you need to traverse a glacier on the way. The path is vertical and the rocks are glazed by ice turning the trail slippery to walk. Hence, you need to be very careful. The walk from Phedi is climbing up through a ravine and then a rocky pathway. You will reach the summit of Cho La pass following the trail walk through the side of a frozen lake. The pass is decorated with colorful prayer flags. Mt. Ama Dablam on the south, Mt. Cholaste on the west, Mt. Lobuche on the east and Mt. Baruntse on the right are towering peaks with the fantastic views. Overnight at Dzongla.
Today is a very short trek for about 2 to 3 hours. Hence, you will have plenty of time to rest and relax your tiring muscles. You can enjoy the beautiful surrounding. On the way, you descend from Dzongla and walk through a grassy track witnessing the amazing Mt. Lobuche. The remaining day can be spent either by resting or just roaming around. Better to rest for the forthcoming trek next day. Overnight stay at Lobuche.
The trail to Everest Base Camp is vast via Gorak Shep Lake. You will pass through the Indian army mountaineer’s memorials. It is very important to follow the instructions of your trekking guide here as the path here is sometimes misleading. You will pass through the rocky humps, moraines, and ravines before arriving at the Everest Base Camp. As soon as you arrive at the EBC, you can see several colorful tents especially during the peak season of Spring and Autumn. Mt. Khumbutse, Mt. Nuptse and Mt. Pumori is visible from the EBC. You will return to Gorak Shep for the overnight stay.
However, you can ask your trekking leader to route the trail towards Kala Patthar for the sunset view as it is more astounding than the sunrise. The trekking leader will coordinate according to the plan.
An early morning start from Gorak Shep towards Pheriche. The pre-dawn walk in the temperature ranging from -10 to -14 C towards Kalapatthar is a chilling initiative. You will witness the huge peaks like Changtse, Lingtren and Khumbutse towering towards the east and the Everest will be seen itself. The panoramas of the mighty Himalayas are captured in pictures and spending some time here, you will return to Lobuche for the overnight stay.
Those trekkers who will visit the Everest Base Camp on this day will take the early morning breakfast as the Everest Base Camp hike will take a longer time than the hike to Kala Patthar. So both the groups of trekkers will take lunch at the same time together and descend to Pheriche for the overnight stay.
As you walk down passing through the hills covered by the jungle of rhododendron and juniper, there comes a suspension bridge over the Dudh Koshi river. After crossing it, you will pass by meadows where you can see many mountain goats and colorful pheasants. Upon arriving at Sansa, you will view the Ama Dablam, Nuptse, and Thamserku peaks. It is windy before reaching Namche Bazaar. Overnight stay at Namche Bazaar.
Continuing the return, the trail will descend steeply until you reach a suspension bridge over the Dudh Koshi and its rivulets. You will be really tired and might have shaky legs. Need control over them while walking. Upon arrival at Lukla, you can take a good rest and stretch those shaky legs. Overnight stay at Lukla.
An early morning flight back to Kathmandu from Lukla. The farewell to the amazing journey in the mountains of Everest Region. After reaching Kathmandu, you will be taken to the hotel by the representative of Step On Himalaya and take rest or do shopping. The day is yours, the choice is yours. Feel free to ask for any help with Step On Himalaya representative.
Finally, you will be leaving Nepal. The adventurous stay in Nepal comes to end here but still hoping to serve you again and again in the upcoming future, Step On Himalaya team wishes you to have the best. The representative will take you to the International Airport at least 3 hours prior to the scheduled flight.