Everest Base Camp 2008
Mount Everest is located in the eastern part of Nepal in a region called Khumbu and is contained within the Sagarmatha National Park. There are no roads in the Khumbu region, so the only options for getting around are walking and flying in. Rather than start from Jiri, which would have added another week to the total time, we opted to fly into Lukla and start the trek at 2860m. There is a check point for entering the Park near Jorsalle (day 2 of trek) and you will need to show your permit and pay the entry fees.
dotted line traces the onward trekking route from Lukla to Kala Pathar and
Everest Base Camp. The green dotted line traces
the modified route we took on the return trip.
Prior to this trip we had made completed the following high-altitude (> 10,000 ft) treks:
|Description||Highest Point reached||Highest Point Viewed||Comments|
|2003 : Inca Trail to Macchu Pichu||
Dead Woman's Pass/Huarmiwanusca: 4200m/13800 ft
Followed by a high point (4910m/16100ft.) on the drive from Arequipa to Colca Canyon.
|Ausangate (6384m/20945ft.)||On this trip we had a view of Ausangate (a.k.a. Cusco) enroute to Manu Biosphere. It was the highest peak that we had viewed till that point.|
|2004: Mount Whitney Summit||4418m/14494ft||The highest peak in the contiguous (48) states.|
|2005: Mount Dana Summit||3979m/13053ft||Practice climb for Mount Kilimanjaro in Yosemite National Park, California.|
|2005:Mount Kilimanjaro||5895m/19320ft||Highest point in Africa. The highest point we had set foot on beating the point in Peru that we had reached in 2003.|
|2007: Altiplano in the Atacama desert, Chile||Several short hikes at altitude (> 4200m). No climbing was involved||Llullaillaco (6739m/22110 ft.)||We were able to view Llullaillaco (pronounced you-yai-yaco) from the Altiplano from more than 100km. away. This beat our previous record of Ausangate. On the flights to Santiago we had a close view of several Andean peaks but we were not able to identify any. It is quite possible that we could have sighted Aconcagua (6962m/22841ft.). But since we could not identify it, we could not count it.|
|2008: Ansel Adams Wilderness||Donahue Pass (3370m/11055ft.)||6 day backpacking trip through the Sierra Nevada mountains in California.|
On this trip to the Himalayas, we fully expected to catch sight of Mount Everest (8850m/29035ft.) and that would break the Llullaillaco marker with finality.
Here is a list of the highest mountains in the world. Reviewing this (at least the top 14 which belong to the exclusive 8000m+ club) will provide some context to this trip.