- Day 8 – Thursday 5th October 2017
- Lobuche to Everest Base Camp & back to Gorakshep
- Altitude Start : 4,410m/14,465ft
- Altitude Finish : 5,180m/17,126ft
- Maximum Altitude Gain : 770m/2,661ft
There was a mouse in our room the whole night and we couldn’t catch him…so sleep was pretty disturbed and it was a long day that awaited us!
So up at 6am for a 7am start as we had a 7hr hike ahead of us in order to make it to Everest Base Camp (pretty excited today…well actually I have been every single day).
We started the climb to Lubuche Pass in order to reach Gorakshep. Gorakshep sits at 5,180m/17,126ft and this was the site of the 1953 Everest Expedition base camp.
On our journey we managed to get a view of Pumori, a beautiful symmetrical peak shaped like a pyramid.
Along the way there are a number of up and down rock scrambles.
After checking in at the tea house we have a quick lunch, then head towards Everest Base Camp.
At this stage, or in-fact several days before this stage (read:after day 1), a number of people in the group are struggling with sheer exhaustion, but onwards we go.
We soon start climbing a ridge that follows the Western side of the Khumba Glacier, it is miles long and looks like no man’s land.
We follow a very tough path but sickly it is enjoyable as we can see the crest of the North ridge of Everest along with Mt Pumori, Mt Mahalangur, Mt Lingtern, Mt Kumbutse, Mt Nuptse and more – see, told you it was sick!
The scenery is once again spectacular.
Then we catch sight of the notorious Everest Ice Fall that flows from the Western Cwm, a beautiful and dangerous ice fall.
We continue to follow the glacier then finally there is a drop of approximately 100 metres to Everest Base Camp (17,590m) – a 100 metre drop means a 100 metre climb later in the day and it had been a long walk in to Base Camp…it certainly was going to be a long walk back out.
Once at the bottom we have to boulder climb for what seems like an eternity.
There are also frozen lakes within the mass of the glacier and walking towards Base Camp you actually forget you are trudging over the massive glacier itself.
Then it happens…we reach Everest Base Camp.
The most iconic base camp of all, at the foot of the greatest mountain in the world, Mount Everest (8848m).
The Himalayan Mountains surround and embrace you. This is truly a spiritual place.
Achieving my goal was met with such relief, but I was also overcome with emotion…standing in this amazing spot that has such history, these many wonderful people who have passed through it and will continue to pass through it was pretty special – I have great respect for anyone who has or will ever attempt Everest when you see the actual scale of things up close and personal.
We spent some time taking photo’s in the natural amphitheatre then it was time to retreat and head back to Gorakshep, traversing back through the ups and downs of the ridge above the Khumba Glacier.
A couple within our group did not reach Base Camp as she was really unwell and both of them had to turn back – this was pretty sad to hear as they were approximately 30 minutes away.
We get back to the tea house and have a hot drink as the trek back was really cold, then we sort out our rooms/bags – and once again it’s freezing….just what you need after a day in the great outdoors.
The dining area is always hot in the evening as they have their yak burning stove on so we head through there, but step outside of this and it’s so so cold!
As I sit in bed writing this up I have about four layers of clothing on, I’m in a sleeping bag liner, plus sleeping bag, plus blanket….and it’s still cold!
Tomorrow some of us have had a mad idea to get up at 3.30am and hike up Kala Patthar to watch sunrise on Everest….sounds like an ace plan….we shall see!