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First Trek in Himalayas - HELP!!

Suffolk
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First Trek in Himalayas - HELP!!

Hello all!

I wonder if I may be able to ask your expert advice!

I am planning a trip (all in the very early stages) to the Himalayas - I have looked at a few different treks - but I just cant decide which one I want to do - They all look good - But I want to make the most of my trip and choose the best one! I suppose Im after amazing views, breath taking scenary, and some challenges along the way, I guess Nepal is the best place to do this?

I have looked into the everest base camp one, as it would give me the will power to carry on going knowing I would get there! But are others better?

Would you suggest booking it all up before I leave?

what kind of training should I be doing before I go? (planning to go late October time)

Any other tips and info you have greatly appriciated - as I say I have only started to look in to this all, so any steps in the right direction will be great!!

Thanks!

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Kathmandu, Nepal
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1. Re: First Trek in Himalayas - HELP!!

This is Okay which you are chosen the trek of Everest as your desired. But Usually, gets problem of the flight to Lukla due to the bad weather sometime which things happened the last year too... specially as your scheduled. This is why, you may trek to the Annapurna circuit in which you will get what you want see and the changes so far, it means, you do not have to take a mentality headache about the flight.

Just keep in mind to whom you want to book your trip. Do not unnecessary booking your trip before you leave. But, if you are sure that you are not going to book your trip to fake agency it will be good so far.

It is not cleared that what kinds of sector you are from. Any way, better to do some physical exercise which helps you to walk around the mountain {up and down...]

I do hope it helps you some...

Guide

Cumbria
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2. Re: First Trek in Himalayas - HELP!!

First of all, I never like to say “Best” trek as they all have their own merits as well as imperfections – so I will try and give you a few pointers

EBC

Pro’s

1) Seeing Everest

2) Wonderful high altitude trek that can be trekked safely in as little as 2 weeks Lukla – Lukla or 3 weeks Jiri – EBC – Lukla or just under 4 weeks Jiri EBC – Lukla – Gokyo – Lukla or longer

Con’s

Can be expensive if you fly to and from Lukla and risk of flight delays at Lukla

AC (Annapurna Circuit)

Pro’s

1) Diverse trek starting off at low altitude passing through paddy fields. Then grain fields, pasture, forests and out above the tree line over Thorung La (5540m) then through the deepest valley I the word, The kali Gandaki

2) Easy road access to trailheads so no flights required

3) Can be trekked as the full circuit of fly out of Jomsom if time is tight

Con’s – Trek now somewhat marred by road building

ABC (Annapurna Sanctuary)

Pro’s

1) Relatively short trek of about 10 days but gets you right into the heart of the mountains

2) Can be extended to include Poon Hill if time permits

3) Easy road access to trailheads so no flights required

Con’s

Few villages and none above Chomrong so a little lacking in culture and real Nepali life

Langtang / Helambu

Pro’s

1) Least crowded of all the teahouse trekking routes

2) Can be combined with Helambu (You can then trek right back into the Kathmandu Valley and save a long arduous bus journey)

Con’s

The bus ride from Kathmandu to Syapru Besi

More details of all the above in the Sports Travel Tips and Travelogues on this link

members.virtualtourist.com/m/50192/6ec/

Whether to book in advance – Normally I would say No as it is far Better to meet your trekking staff and interview then first to ensure that they are suitable, also you will get a much better price on the ground in Nepal that you will be quoted on the net – However, Sometimes when time is tight you do have to, Just make 100^ sure that you have picked the Right company if you take this option !!!!!

When hiring out “Staff” the secret of a successful trek is to set the ground rules Before you leave Kathmandu and these rules should include

1) Always interview your “Staff” Before you go trekking with them, Preferably get them to give you a walking tour around Kathmandu, Then they are away from the office, will be able to talk freely and you will be in a better position to judge their ability to communicate, character and if you are going to be able to get on well enough with them on your trek.

2)Ask if he has already trekked the route you are going on and how many times

3) Tell them that You Always retain the final say where you will stay and where and when you will eat.

Personally I am Happy to look at places recommended by my “Staff” (As I am aware that some places look after Nepali’s a lot better than others, better accommodation as well as better / cheaper food for them + if they get a little kick-back then as long as I am happy with the standard as well as the price that I am paying this doesn’t bother me)

4) I also mention to them that as long as I am happy with their services then they will get a Good Tip – I think this clears the air and gives your “Staff” that extra incentive to ensure that you are well looked after.

5) The agent that I use provides all his “Staff” with a mobile phone – I also think this is an excellent idea so that if there is a problem then (providing you have a phone Signal) these can be Quickly sorted out.

6) Before I start a trek is to have a rough schedule, then I know approximately how many days I will be trekking for, to this I usually add one buffer day, so If all goes according to plan I am usually back from my trek one day ahead, With this the agent that is use I can claim one days fees back, but in reality, as I have always been happy with my treks, I have never done this, but have ensured that my “Staff” are still paid the extra day.

Another system that the agent I use has is that if you want to extend your trek, if it takes longer than originally anticipated or if for what ever reason you are delayed then you can pay your “Staff” direct. This works well for everyone as the “Staff” in actual fact get more money as there is no agents commission deducted and as the agent has already had his cut he is (Or should be) happy as well.

7) It is also worth making 100% sure that your “Staff” are insured and that the agent is making sure that their clothing is up to the standard for the area / season you are trekking in.

It may sound like a bit of a list – But personally I think it is well worth that little extra effort at the beginning of your trek to help minimise potential unforeseen problems later :-)

Happy and Safe Trekking

Rob

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New Delhi, India
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3. Re: First Trek in Himalayas - HELP!!

Hi there,

1. U mentioned, u are after amazing views, breath-taking scenery and challenges. EBC would definetely satisfy all the above ... and, be the best trek for ur requirements. Other treks also meet ur requirements ... maybe, to a lesser degree.

Anyway, Rob above has analysed the treks well. I don't need to repeat it.

2. About booking beforehand. If u have a couple of days in KTM pre-trek, then there is no need to book in advance. Maybe, just short-list a few beforehand ?

3. Training. Cardio exercises in gym. Some overall muscle toning. Long walks. Breaking in ur trekking shoes. I believe, any average fit person can do the EBC ... just listen to ur body.

Following acclimitisation rules is most important. Pls do read about them. Be flexible in ur planning to cater for a possible extra day of acclimitisation ... over and above the stated rules.

Enjoy Nepal trekking ... and, be prepared to get addicted to it. Unfortunately, there is no known cure to this addiction :-)))

cheers,

- manish

Sheffield, United...
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for Nepal
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4. Re: First Trek in Himalayas - HELP!!

Hi

The best trek in Nepal is the one you want to do, in your case EBC, and it does fit your criteria.

When and where to book needs a little exploration: it is not always possible to sort everything out in a couple of days. For example, it might not be possible to get on a Lukla flight in a couple of days in October (it's high season) or there could be a backlog because of weather delays - those with tickets already will get priority. Also, the amount of time in Nepal is relevant too; if your time is tight then you might need to have everything arranged before arrival. Furthermore, preferred trekking style has an impact too; finding an organised group trek departing on the date you prefer could be tricky, firstly it might take a little time to find a group and secondly, the 'fixed departure groups' advertised (online or on boards outside their offices) by Nepali agents do not always run. For the certainty of a fixed departure booking from home with one of the larger international companies might be the best. Trekking independently (no guide or porter) is the easiest and quickest to organise (usually).

If you do have the benefit of time then you could start the process in KTM but it's worth doing some research; identifying potential agencies from recommendations on here (set spam filter to high) and other forums (lonelyplanet.com, trekinfo.com) and from the members directory at taan.org.np; contact a few stating what you want, see what they have to offer but do not book online. rather, draw up a short list to visit once in KTM - for the reasons stated by Rob above (and there is no doubt he knows his onions); better price and chance to meet potential guides (if that' how you will trek).

Fitness is a more difficult issue to give advice on - because I'm no expert and it depends on your current level of fitness and activities. Whatever exercise you can take will help you to enjoy the trek more. I don't see why exercise has to be in the gym 9(walks, runs, cycle rides) nor specifically muscle toning - that will follow from the exercise. The most important factor is to trek at your own pace - go too fast and it could be a problem. This is where group trekking can be a problem - you have to trek at the group's pace whereas trekking with 'staff' of your own you can rest when you like, have short days or take a full rest day. If you are concerned about fitness having a porter carry your bags is a great idea 9and a good value option is to hire a porter/guide one person doing both jobs; more info on this if you wish...)

Although a quite strenuous tre, the need to acclimatise appropriately means some trekking days are relatively short. It would be worth checking some websites for itineraries - they often give walking times for each day - and getting a guidebook which will have lots of other useful detail. I would recommend Trekking in the Everest Region by Jamie McGuinness (Trailblazer) because it has more detail than a guidebook covering all the regions in Nepal and the day to day trekking maps are very useful. This map is also useful for planning and visualising the trek:

…umbra.cz/img/map/Khumbu_Sagarmatha_National…

A couple of articles about acclimatisation too:

www.ismmed.org/np_altitude_tutorial.htm

himalayanrescue.org/hra/altitude_sickness.php

I hope you enjoy the trek.

scoodly

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Suffolk
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5. Re: First Trek in Himalayas - HELP!!

Wow thank you EVERYBODY - each and every post was of great use to me! I have a bit of thinking to do now!!

Thanks again!

6. Re: First Trek in Himalayas - HELP!!

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Pokhara
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7. Re: First Trek in Himalayas - HELP!!

There Are So Many Treks In Nepal with lots of Different Beauty so it is always hard to Choose one , But for the First timer with less challenges on finding good food & Accommodation i would say Either EBC (Everest base Camp) Or The EBC (Annapurna Base Camp with your time Frame this gonna shoot it.

Finding Agencies in Nepal is not a Difficult Question as there are already Hundreds of Them now matter of Booking them Earlier / on the Spot ???

Booking the Treks in Advance might be A Little Costlier Than finding one on the Spot but this gives you Lots of Security , As you will get right crews & Better Arrangement , you save your time with less fears , & has no risk on Pick season some times on Pick season many of the service industry in tourism here can easily be sold out lack of Skill Manpower .

Any way In Advance i wished you a Wonderful Trek

Regards

Raja.

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mansfield ct
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8. Re: First Trek in Himalayas - HELP!!

if i could offer some help.we traveled to nepal at the end of september , me my wife and 9 yaer old daughter.our plans had changed when we got their, we had a few small treks but it was the end of rainy season so we decicided on the poon hill trek . i am not in great shape and have a metal hip. our guide said it was a mental thing . and it was a go at your own pace ,no hurry . we read the travel books but found there where alot of places to stay on the trail , you did not have to rush to the big villiges.and found the best time was when we stayed in the 5 room places . you got to really sample the culture and get to know the people. it was a hard trip alot of steps alot . i would have spent more time on a stair master but the steps are uneven so you cannot get into a good pace. but remember you are there for the experience it is not a race.i would bring a knee brace i did not and my knees did hurt. i also would have brought glue for my boots. never thought of it , but had to by some along the way .they kept falling apart , and they where good boots. i would skip the trekking poles a bought a piece of bamboo stick ,it worked better then the poles. some of the steps going down wher steep and long bamboo pole was what i needed. most important is take your time no hurry plenty of rest stop places to eat and sleep along the way in poon hill area.in the end i was nervous especially with my daughter , but it is a great time if you go slow

mansfield ct
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9. Re: First Trek in Himalayas - HELP!!

you can hire a porter to carry your stuff.as long as you are in fair shape you can do it no big . take your time.plenty of family owned places to stay on the trail

New Zealand
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10. Re: First Trek in Himalayas - HELP!!

I did Goyko Ri in 2010 and loved it. It is a valley or so from EBC and not so crowded. The track is quite busy until we branched away from EBC therefore a lot more peaceful and not so much a highway. You walk pass some beautiful lakes, attitude gets to 5400 metres (approx) and walk back over a morine glacier. While I went with a company - World Expeditions, we tented most of the way though some nights were in tea houses.

Totally loved Nepal and the people.

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