Everest Base Camp – Step 2: Time schedule


When I did my research about Nepal and the Everest Base Camp Trek, I realised that it would be possible to actually go through with this project – even as soon as this year! So my next step was to decide when to go. I use to say that the best way to make a dream that includes a trip come true is to book the flying ticket. Then the hardest step is made (to make the decision to go) and then the rest tend to solve itself.

So when should I go and how long was I gonna stay? While doing my research, I read an article that appointed Nepal the cheapest country in the world this year, so I decided to not think about money when planning my trip. I wanted to plan it as it I wanted to do it and then change it a little bit according to budget if I had to.

But how do you plan a hike in a country you never visited, at an altitude you never been at, on a trail you don’t even know how it looks? To even found out how long the distances was between the mountain villages on the trail turned out to be pretty tricky. I learned that when it comes to hiking in the mountains, it’s more common that you talk about the elevation gain rather than distance – and if you talking distance, you talk hiking hours rather than miles. I also found it hard to relate to these hours since everybody has their own pace and wants to take different numbers of breaks for rest, views, taking pictures etc. So even when I found out about the distances, I didn’t really knew how I would handle them, how I would adapt them to myself.

What I did to make my own time schedule was to look at some of the arranged trips up to Everest Base Camp. Swedish people like to feel safe and the trips that Swedish travelling agencies arrange are in my opinion very well planned with that in mind. Their focus is that as many as possible of the people in the group should reach Base Camp, rather than saving money on doing the hike in fewer days. It doesn’t look good if half of the group won’t make it because of a tight schedule. After looking at some different agencies it seemed like all of them almost had an identical schedule with basically the same stops. I therefor decided to make mine the same, but well on the trail have an open mind to change it a little bit while I’m there. Since I’m on my own I have the possibility to stay in smaller villages with smaller lodges since I only need one bed for myself, not a whole group.

Map from National Geographic: Lukla – Everest Base Camp


But I’m not gonna start immediately from Lukla. First I want at least one day in Kathmandu to get a good night sleep after the flight and then also see the town and arrange the last things for the trip. Then I will take a bus or car to Jiri and then hike from there to Lukla instead of flying directly to Lukla which is the most common thing when you do this hike. To find out how long this hike was gonna take was a bit more difficult since there’s no other schedules to look at, but soon I found some answers in a guidebook that made it possible for me to figure out a plan. I decided to plan the days shorter than I think I can handle. Getting ahead of your schedule is always nicer than behind, then you have time to just enjoy your trip.

After reaching Base Camp, I’m gonna spend an extra day in Gorak Shep to wait for a Swedish group from the agency Swett. Meanwhile I’m gonna hike up to the summit of Kala Patthar at 18175 ft/5540 meter and back. After meeting the group, I’m gonna join them to make an attempt to climb Lobuche Peak (east) at 20075 ft/6119 meter! My choice to join a group to to this is because I don’t have enough knowledge or experience to make an summit attempt on my own at this level. I usually say that you should try doing things on you own and push your limits, but you have to stay safe too.

After Lobuche Peak, I’m gonna hike back to Lukla on my own and then fly to Kathmandu where I will spend some extra days before I’m flying home.


So after thinking through the trip, what I want to do and then researched some more, this is how my preliminary schedule looks like:


Day 1 : Departure Stockholm.
Day 2 : Arrival Kathmandu.
Day 3 : Kathmandu. Preparations for the hike.
Day 4 : Bus or car to Jiri. Hike to Shivalaya, 5 miles/8 km, 3-3,5 h.
Day 5 : Hike to Kenja, 10 miles/16 km, 7-8 h.
Day 6 : Hike to Junbesi, 10 miles/16 km, 8-9,5 h.
Day 7 : Hike to Manidingma ”Nuntala”, 8,6 miles/14 km, 6-7 h.
Day 8 : Hike to Puiyan, about 10 miles/16 km, 8-8,5 h.
Day 9 : Hike to Phakding (passing Lukla), about 9,3 miles/15 km, 6-7 h.
Day 10 : Hike to Namche Bazaar, about 6 miles/10 km, 5-6 h.
Day 11 : Acclimatisation day in Namche Bazaar.
Day 12 : Hike to Thyangboche/Tengboche, 5,5 miles/9 km, 6-7 h.
Day 13 : Hike to Pheriche or Dingboche, 6 miles/10 km, 4-4,5 h.
Day 14 : Acclimatisation day in Pheriche or Dingboche.
Day 15 : Hike to Lobuche, 6 miles/9,5 km, 3-4 h.
Day 16 : Hike to Everest Base Camp! Then back to Gorak Shep, 7,5-8 miles/12-13 km 5,5-8 h.
Day 17 : Climbing of Kala Patthar, then back to Gorak Shep to meet the group from Swett.
Day 18 : Hike to Lobuche Peak High camp.
Day 19 : Climbing of Lobuche Peak/extra day
Day 20 : Climbing of Lobuche Peak/extra day
Day 21 : Hike to Pheriche or Dingboche.
Day 22 : Hike to Namche Bazaar.
Day 23 : Hike to Benkar.
Day 24 : Hike to Lukla.
Day 25 : Flight Lukla-Kathmandu.
Day 26 : Kathmandu.
Day 27 : Kathmandu.
Day 28 : Departure Kathmandu.
Day 29 : Arrival Stockholm.

I’ve chosen the dates I’m going after the group I want to do Lobuche Peak with. They have one trip in April and one in October and even if I would rather want to go in April when there is an actual camp in Base Camp with expeditions aiming for the top of Everest, it was a bit to tight for me to go in April this year and I don’t have patience enough to wait till next year!
To hike just a few days in front of a Swedish group is also a safety thing for me. It is a challenge to do this and IF something would happen it feels good to know that there’s a group from my country just behind me.

Images from google maps.

You may also like

LEAVE A COMMENT

To the swedish site:

http://www.wilderness-stories.com/sv

Me who runs the blog

... is Linda Åkerberg. I'm a 32 years old photographer based in Stockholm, Sweden. Read more about me here

Instagram

It’s easy to forget, that when climbing a mountain, reaching the top means that you’re only halfway through your climb. The way down can be at least as heard (or sometimes even harder) than they way up. This is important to keep in mind when climbing. This and much more will be part of my talk about Kilimanjaro at @naturkompaniet (Hantverkargatan) in Stockholm tonight at 18.30! Drop by if your interested in learning more! ☀️
.
Pic from my descent of Kilimanjaro in March with Mt. Meru in the background. Maybe I’ll climb that too next time... 😁
#mykilimanjarostory .
.
#mountkilimanjaro #kilimanjaro #mykilimanjaroadventure #climbingmountains #mtmeru #futuregoals #dreambig #neverstopexploring
Uhuru Peak - The top of Kilimanjaro - is located 5895 meters above sea level and is the highest point of Africa, which also makes Kilimanjaro one of the #sevensummits .
Uhuru means ‘freedom’ in Swahili and the peak got its name when Tanzania was declared a independent country in 1964. 🇹🇿 #mykilimanjarostory
The last stretch to the top of Kilimanjaro. To the right you can see the people surrounding the monument that marks the summit and to the left you can see the southern icefields. Once, the glacier reached all the way to the trail but now it’s far away. Scientists predict the glaciers on Kilimanjaro will be all gone by 2060. It’s sad that even on such a remote place as the top of Africa, you want to get away from the effects of global warming...💔
#mykilimanjarostory
Right. Left. Right. Left. Right...
The last stretch up to the top of Kilimanjaro after Stella Point sure was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done and all I could think of was my next step.  I’ve never been so captured in the moment and at the same time so stubborn to not giving up. 
Luckily I was once or twice able manage to remember to pic up my phone and take some pictures. This is one of the few I have from the last stretch to the top.
#mykilimanjarostory #nevernevernevergiveup #iphonephotography
Mawenzi Peak, the third of the three volcanoes that is part of the Kilimanjaro massive. With its 5149 meters above sea level, it’s not only the second highest point on Kilimanjaro, it’s also the third highest point in Africa! (After Kilimanjaro’s Uhuru Peak and Mt Kenya.) Pic from the crater rim just an hour or so after sunrise.
#mykilimanjarostory
Did you know that you can get a certificate that you climbed Kilimanjaro even if you don’t get to the top? If you’re reaching Gilman’s Point at 5685m (only passed if you’re doing the Rongai or Marangu Route) or Stella Point at 5756m, you also get one. The golden summit certificate you only get if you make it all the way to Uhuru Peak at 5895m though. .
For me the hardest stretch on the summit day was up to Stella Point. After that the trail gets much less steep and the fact that you can actually see the Uhuru Peak makes the rest of the climb - I wouldn’t say easy, but at least - much easier. Getting to this point also felt really good, it was here that I for the first time knew that I was gonna make it!
#mykilimanjarostory
Sunrise seen from Kilimanjaro during my summit push.
.
When you’re climbing a mountain, it’s normal to start your summit attempt very early in the morning. On Kilimanjaro, I started at midnight!
.
So why start so early in the middle of the night?
🗻The climb from base camp and back took about 11 hours and you wanna do this while the snow and ground is still frozen and hard. That makes it easy to walk on and you won’t have to worry about sliding around. 🗻The sun and heat is also a reason. The air is thin on the top and once the sun has rised it can be very hot - but you still need to cover yourself to not get burned. 🗻A third reason is that you get to watch the magic sunrise from the top of Africa. Maybe the best reason of them all. 😍
#mykilimanjarostory
One of the most well known plants on Kilimanjaro is the groundsel Dendrosenecio. Walking down in the fog from Lava Tower, these gigantic plants appeared for the first time on the Machame Route and they felt both spooky and so pretty at the same time.💕
#mykilimanjarostory
Patience - one of the most valuable traits of a hiker or climber.
.
Yesterday I gave some advice to a guy that hikes the PCT this year. After just 40 miles in he started complaining about his shoes. That he got blisters and wanted new ones. My best advice to him was to take some days off and then continue forward and not do too many miles a day. To let his body slowly adapt to the new conditions. Not buying new shoes. .
The same is it with altitude. There is no easy solution. To be able to handle it, you have to let you’re body slowly adapt to the new altitude and the less amount of oxygen it gets.
.
Climbing Kilimanjaro can be hard because many of the routes are done in few days. One benefit with choosing the Machame Route is that you get one acclimatization day on your way up. After Shira Cave Camp (3750m) you go up to Lava Tower at 4600m before you’re heading down to your next camp, Barranco camp at 3900m. This gives you’re body time to adjust to the altitude and increases the odds making it to the top!
.
This pic is from my way up to Lava Tower. I was lucky to have snow there which is not always the case! Can you see the small people in the lower left corner?!
#mykilimanjarostory

Subscribe to new posts on Wilderness Stories!



Supporters