In the temperate zone at 3,000+ meters
Khumjung Travel Blog› entry 2 of 5 › view all entries
Namche Bazaar – 3,440m
The trek from Jorsale to the famous Nachem Bazaar was quite a long was quite a long one, trekking up the mountain only to trek down on the other side, crossing the river to another mountain and then trekking upwards again. We had to cross three suspension bridges across the river and the most challenging one was the Larja Bridge after the village of Larja Dobhan (2,830m). This narrow suspension bridge was not only the highest but also the oldest. Because this bridge was very high above the rushing Dudh Koshi, strong winds were blowing across from all sides which made the crossing very exciting.
Namche Bazaar is a big town with plenty lodges, restaurants, stores selling a variety of things, good bakeries, internet cafes, many tourists and in general a bustling place.
We stayed in Zamling Guest House, a splendid lodge overlooking the entire Namche Bazaar and the high mountains on the other side. Run by a hospitable Sherpa family, the Zamling is supposed to be one of the best lodges in Namche. With a large dinner room downstairs and bedrooms with private bathrooms upstairs, it was indeed very comfortable and a far cry from the simple lodges that we have stayed for the previous two nights.
It was nice to stay in the best lodge but going to town was quite a pain, having to walk up and down the terraces. My trekking partner was starting to suffer from the effects of altitude and had occasional headaches. Hence, we spent two days acclimatizing and resting in Namche. We trekked up to Jaro, 3925m the next day. From Namche, it was a continuous trek up the mountain with an ascent of about 500m.
We passed by the defunct Shyanboche airstrip that was originally planned as an entryway to the Khumbu region for wealthy travelers where they could fly in from the lower altitudes and follow a trail to the hilltop where the famous Hotel Everest View is located.
Tesing – 3,380m
From Namche, we proceeded onwards and made our way to Tesing where we stayed another two nights at the splendid Everest Summit Lodge. Owned by a German, it was a luxurious lodge with standards far better than anything else available in the area and had the amenities of a modern hotel.
With my intake of at least 3 liters of water every day, I was having no problem with headaches or altitudes but my trekking partner still had constantly throbbing headaches, so bad that he had to take Ibuprufen. Hence, it was good that we had enough time to further acclimatize before proceeding to higher altitudes.
Deboche – 3,710m
Our next overnight place was a simple lodge in Deboche. The original plan was to proceed and find a lodge in Tengboche, 3,860m but upon arrival there, we felt fine and decided to proceed onwards.
Tengboche is the spiritual center of the Khumbu Valley. The Tengboche Monastery is the most important gompa in the Sherpa region and is the home to the abbot and the training center for new monks. Surrounded by spectacular mountains, the triangular summit of Mount Everest at the head of the Khumbu Valley could be seen from the monastery.
As it was a cloudy day on the ascent, we did not have a view of Mount Everest from here but on the descent where we stayed overnight here, we were treated with a glorious and magnificent sunset view of the spectacular peaks in the whole of the Himalaya including Mount Everest, Lhotse Nuptse and the beautifully shaped Ama Dablam, known as one of the world’s most beautiful mountain.
While we were taking a rest and enjoying a break at one of the teahouses in Tengboche, our guide came and told us that there were some Singaporeans at another teahouse.
This Everest summit attempt would be Khoo's second attempt and this time without supplementary oxygen and a first attempt for his partner. Although we completed our trek in early April, we followed their progress and they successfully summited Everest that May. Heartiest congratulations!
Weather was getting a lot colder as we proceeded above 3600 meters and it started snowing at night too. After all the comfort of the lodges we had for the previous nights, we had to get used to the simple lodges once again where the tiny rooms were just four wooden plank walls with two wooden plank beds. Heating was only available in the common dining room while the toilets were outside some distance away from the lodge.
Pangboche – 3,930m
Leaving the snowy Deboche the next morning to proceed towards Pangboche, we had our first view of the Mt Everest peak. The walk towards Pangboche was very pleasant, mostly through Rhododendron forest, although the flowers were not yet in blossom on our ascent. On the ascent, we had beautiful views of Ama Dablam. On the descent around mid April, the weather had already turned warmer and the Rhododendrons were already in full blossoms.
Pangboche is a huge village and has plenty of terraced fields and a school for the children in the neighbouring villages. We had lunch in one of the lodges and since it was still early, we proceeded onwards to Shomare.