I must apologize in advance for the length of this blog. I typically try to keep my posts on the shorter side and didn’t realize how long this posts would be until it was done. I have tried to cut it down but just can’t. As much as I want to tell everyone all about the trip, it is impossible to do it justice.
Lukla is a large hub for the beginning of a lot of treks through the Everest Region. Lukla was lined with shops selling trekking gear and supplies. As we proceeded forward, I was amazed at the number of villages we passed through and how built up they were. They weren’t huge by NYC standards but I think Kansas might be more barren then the Himalayas. As we increased in elevation, the villages became further apart and you could tell their purpose was catering to the trekkers. Our guide informed us people in these areas move to lower elevations for the winter months.
Each morning, we trekked in the morning for 4-7 hours. The trail was busy with trekkers, porters, yak and donkeys. The porters immediately amazed me. Porters accompanying trekkers typically had two rucksacks on their back. The government limits the amount the porters can carry to 30 kg (66 lbs). However, I am not sure the limits are monitored beyond luggage restrictions on the flights. The other porters on the trail had loads of goods on their backs to take to the teahouses. I am not talking light stuff. We saw rice, bottled water, building materials, beer, lots of beer, and propane being carried up the mountains. Who would have thought beer was a necessity at 18,000 feet?
We frequently encountered small herds of yak (and cow like animals) loaded with goods on their backs headed up to the teahouses. They moved very slowly and seemed mellow tempered. Even with their mellow tempers, it didn’t take long to learn we should not stand on the edge of the mountain while letting them pass.
People from all over the world come to trek in the Everest region. Literally all over. We met Germans, Australians, New Zealanders, Israelis, Chinese, Indians, Japanese, British, and the list goes on. Along the way, we had the opportunity to chat with a lot of trekkers while trekking or in the evening at a teahouse. We would often run into the same trekkers multiple times during the trek even if our schedules were not identical.
The trekking part was tough physically (even with only a 3 kg or 6.6 lb backpack) but not impossible. Continue reading