Jan 21, 2020 at 1:46 pm #3628154
Heading to Nepal early March to do the EBC Trek, any tips or advise? Will be using the typical tea houses, and plan on 12 days trekking including 2 acclimatization days. Will be using my typical gear, for estimated temps from avg highs 70s to lows below freezing.Jan 21, 2020 at 5:54 pm #3628192Roger CaffinModerator
@rcaffinLocale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Solid sun protection as you will be up HIGH, with much UV. Broad-brimmed hat, long sleeves and long trousers. Also good sunglasses, or clip-ons. Super-light UV-stop mitts covering the back of your hands maybe.
Water treatment is crucial. Many commercial trekking companies claim to use iodine to wash and sterilise water, but it is often Condy’s Crystals, NOT iodine. Same colour but NOT very effective. Equally, sealed cans of drink, with NO ice. I would recommend carrying your own Steripen Classic3, used ALWAYS. Spare lithium AA batteries.
Along those lines: freshly cooked food is usually OK, but NOT uncooked things, like salads etc.
Packet biscuits are often available from tea shops: they are usually OK if sealed.
Buying canisters in Kathmandu (Thamel district) is a real gamble. Some of the traders there pick up half-used canisters from departures and refill them to the nominal weight with water. They test OK in the shops when used upright, but NOT when used inverted. Test every one. Be ruthless.
You will NOT need boots. Joggers are fine.
CheersJan 21, 2020 at 6:34 pm #3628198
Thanks Roger good points. After much reading I think Steripen is the way to go, any particular reason you suggest the classic vs the new steripen ultra that you can recharge via usb?Jan 21, 2020 at 6:45 pm #3628201Roger CaffinModerator
@rcaffinLocale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Oh yes indeed.
When the batteries run out in the Classic3 you can easily replace them with fresh AA Lithium cells. Not a problem!
When the rechargable battery in the Ultra runs out (which it will do much faster than you expect), and you find your self halfway up to EBC, where you going to get a USB source? NOT in a tea house!
Recharging via a USB cable is the flavour of the month right now, but it is designed for people on the grid with a solid USB port nearby. It is not designed for walkers in the back-country.
Added to required list: a reasonably good camera with spare fully-charged batteries and extra storage. Leave the charger itself at Kathmandu. Personally, I don’t like phone cameras as the lenses are microscopic (poor resolution and high noise), even though the whole phone is small and light. If you are going to take photos, take good ones with a good camera. </soapbox>
CheersJan 21, 2020 at 11:24 pm #3628237David CaudwellBPL Member
@dcinbcLocale: Gulf Islands, Coastal BC
Any chance you can budget for more time? 12 days is tight, if doable, and only 2 acclimatization days is not enough for everyone. You also need to factor in an extra day or two in case getting in or out of Lukla airport is delayed by poor weather.
Personally, seeing as you are going all that way to a gobsmackingly beautiful region, I would budget for more time and spend as little of it on the main EBC route as possible. It’s over-run!
If you have time the Three Pass Loop (plus EBC as a side trip) is epic. I would certainly at least try to do Cho La Pass and come back down from EBC to Namche Bazaar via Gokyo
If you don’t have time for these options then Ama Dablam Base Camp is a great side trip on the way up to EBC and try to do Pangboche to Phortse on the way back down from EBC.
Also assume that everything will freeze inside your room some nights at elevation (the only heated area in the Tea Houses is usually the communal dining area). So, go prepared with an adequate sleeping bag and clothing layers.
Trail runners and micro spikes are totally fine for footwear.
Avoid fatty “western” food options (which raise blood lipids and “thicken” the blood) and alcohol (which dehydrates). Instead, drink plenty of water and Ginger Tea and otherwise eat like the locals do and be sure to have lots of garlic soup and chillies (this helps thin the blood and boosts cardiac output). Hydrate more than you think – at least 3.5 – 4L per day. It is very dry and dusty in the high Himalaya and AMS is at least partly associated with dehydration.
Make sure you educate yourself about AMS (and its variants).
Anyhow, whatever route you do or don’t have time for I’m sure you’ll have an amazing time – the Nepal Himalaya is like no other experience on earth!Jan 23, 2020 at 4:25 am #3628376John S.BPL Member
I went with the Wilderness Medical Society (April 2015, left basecamp 2 weeks before avalanche that killed about 19 in basecamp) and half of the docs got either altitude or GI illness. Even Paul Auerbach, MD got a GI illness when he did his trip with them. Get on diamox and bring meds for if/when you have altitude or GI issues.Jan 23, 2020 at 4:35 am #3628380John S.BPL Member
@jshannJan 23, 2020 at 10:41 am #3628406
Great pictures thanks
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