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Nepal trip – planning

Namaste. This is the first installment of Nepal trip articles. I plan writing about my experiences and impressions from the trip on daily basis. well, I don;t think i will be able to post them straight away since I doubt there will be any internet connection at Kalapathar, 5400m above sea level but I make sure to record all important details from the trip and share them with you.

 

Planning stage is quite tricky. It;s not because it’s difficult to plan what to do in Nepal but it’s mainly number of places you want to see and time constraints that you have. On top of that the more research you do, the more potentially interesting places you find and you don’t what to miss them out from trip. At the end of the day I have 12 full days available to me and I have to start from there. I already set my goal to Himalayas. There are two main areas for trekking, the Everest region and Annapurna region. As I soon realized, all treks last minimum 8 days but mostly much longer than that. There is many options to choose from though, some shorter or longer which may take more than one month to complete. First I was wondering why all treks are so long but later after my research I concluded that it’s due to high altitude sickness and related acclimatisation. One has to be careful about this and not take the whole altitude sickness too lightly, especially the first time trekkers. There is a chance you might be ok and nothing happens but if it does, it can be costly to your wallet and not to mention to your health.

 

My first thought was that I have to get to Everest Base camp no matter what. My 12 available days is just enough to complete this trek, but after a while I wasn’t too excited about this option. This is by far the most popular trek in Everest region and that means loads of tourists which I wasn’t particularly excited about. I was hoping to see at least few of 8000m + giants. There are few in Everest region, like Everest itself, Makalu, K2, Kanchenjunga etc. There is only one in Annapurna region and it’s Annapurna itself. Annapurna is a series of peaks in the Himalayas, a 55 km (34 mi)-long massif of which the highest point, Annapurna I, stands at 8091m, making it the 10th-highest summit in the world and one of the 14 “eight-thousanders”. It is by far the most dangerous mountain to climb. Just for information, Annapurna is the less climbed mountain and has astonishing death rate at 40.8%. Second most dangerous mountain is K2 with 24.1% closely followed by Nanga Parbat with it’s reputation of “Killer Mountain” at 23.4%. Everest is nowhere close to that. It’s death rate is only 7.5%. So much for statistics. There was a decision to be made. Shall I go to see the most dangerous mountain or the tallest one? After little more research the plan was starting to take shape and I finally made choice to trek in Everest region. I just knew it won’t be the base camp so I looked for other options.

 

There was another decision to be made. Shall I trek with tour, guide or just myself. Trekking myself is out of question. I know that it’s possible in Nepal and maybe not so difficult but it’s my first time there and I thought I don’t need to play hero. Tour was out of question too. Last thing I want to adjust myself to big group of people that maybe I don’t get along with very well or maybe just because they won’t share my passion for photography. I decided to hire a guide. after searching on web I found this source. It contains some useful information about trekking with guides and also list of recommended guides. I contacted all of them, asking for advice and quote. I have to say they all replied the next day (except ones who were on trek at the time). All were very kind and helpful. After few emails I made my choice and I decided to go with Agasta. Price was fairly reasonable and he was able to adjust the itinerary to my liking. So after a while we made our plan to visit Kalapathat at 5400m with excellent view of Everest and other giants, spectacular Gokyo lakes, Cho La pass and we also going to visit ?Ngozumpa the biggest glacier in Nepal and one of the biggest in the world.

 

After everything has been decided, its time to get prepared at home. Get the stuff packed, camera gear ready, double check everything I need. That’s what awaits me tonight so I end this article right here and hopefully will be back soon with “Day 1” on the trip.

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