It’s day 14 of our trek to Everest Base Camp. Today is the day. The day we’ll get to Base Camp. But first we have to make it from Lobuche to Gorakshep. It’s gloomy today. Over cast. Grey. There’s snow on the ground, but it’s not more than a sprinkling on the trail.
Today we’re leaving the icy cold Lobuche and heading to Gorakshep and Everest Base Camp, but first stop is Gorakshep for lunch, it should take us around 2 hours. Our altitude change? 4910 meters to 5140 meters.
Lobuche to Gorakshep Logistics
If you’re interested in the details of how far we trekked each day and what the altitude gain is, here are those details.
Lobuche to Gorakshep Distance
It’s 4.5 kilometres from Lobuche to Gorakshep, around 2.8 miles.
Lobuche to Gorakshep Altitude Gain
The altitude of Lobuche is 4910m, the altitude of Gorakshep is 5140 m. In the afternoon we’ll be trekking to Base Camp where the altitude is 5364m. Today although we’ll gain 454 metres we will be sleeping at 5140 m, so in reality it’s a gain of 230 m.
Lobuche to Gorakshep Time Trekking
We took 2 hours to trek from Lobuche to Gorakshep plus an hour stop for lunch
Lobuche to Gorakshep Map
Lobuche to Gorakshep Trail Conditions
At first the trail is flat, easy to follow. Unlike the French speaking group in front of us, half of whom set off mid way through our group. Then they slow, stop in the middle of the trail and decide to wait for the rest of their group. It won’t be the first time they do this and clearly they don’t understand exasperated looks and sighs.
We pull over for a racing horse as it steams along through, spurred on with yells and waving arms, slapping reins.
And then we hit the back of a yak train. I’m relieved. It slows our pace, as today I’m hanging on the coat tails of the fast group. Yaks don’t just constantly walk. They stop all the time. They’re spurred on with yells, with sticks and with rocks occasionally, but I’m staying well back.
Slow Going from Gorakshep to Lobuche
It’s reassuring when we arrive finally at Gorakshep that both Margaret and Ellen agree with me that they too were glad that we got stuck behind the yaks.
The trail, while still distinct, is most definitely not easy. We seems to be scrambling up and over boulders on a regular basis. I’d love to say that the views are magnificent, but its just white on white. Misty.
It doesn’t take us long through. It’s just a couple of hours and the pace, because of the yaks is pleasant. no. Not pleasant, but bearable. The breathing is not difficult, but we’re not moving fast.
It’s on a short climb that we meet a returning group, “Almost there” they say, “just over this hill and then it’s down”. I confirm that they’re not joking and true enough, we’re there. It was almost easy.
Arriving at Gorakshep
This is Gorakshep, the closest “townsite” to Everest Base Camp. It’s little more than a collection of perhaps 6 tea houses, places to stay, eat, buy a few supplies.
Our lodge and tea house is the first one that we come to. The dining room is cosy, when people remember to close the door.
We’re here for an early lunch and then we’ll be heading to Base Camp. It’s our usual soup, then indigestible potatoes and a toasted cheese sandwich,
It seems like we’re here for an age and the anxiety of the group to get going, to move on is palpable. We need to be back before the weather turns, before it gets dark, and while we think its not far to Base Camp, the idea of just getting there and turning around isn’t something I can bear the thought of.
Find out what equipment and clothes we took with us on the Everest Base Camp Trek – in our Trek Gear List.
The Outside Toilet of Gorakshep
The toilets inside the lodge are locked until this evening, they’re reserved for people staying here, so we’re subjected to the toilets across the way. It’s a double shed, that’s built on a slight platform.
This is the poo mountain of Gorakshit.
It’s an art installation declares Nigel as he returns. It’s bloody scary announces someone else. Manny is scarred for life.
It’s the usual oblong hole in a wooden floor with a pit underneath. It’s taller each time I look, because you can’t not look. And rather like Doctor Who’s Angels, each time you blink it gets closer. And that poo mountain is still in my nightmares and it’s still coming to get me.
Margaret was here several years ago (it’s actually from here that she was medevac’d to Kathmandu with cerebral oedema) and warns us that we should be careful with what we wish for, when we all wonder if we can wait for the inside toilets to open. “I just remember frozen urine all over the floor”, she says.
Trekking at altitude carries risks. We insured ourselves through World Nomads – buying specific altitude coverage in case of altitude sickness. We were also able to renew our policy while out of our home country. Get a price for your travel and health insurance now.
And with that we suit up, strip down our day packs and head for the main objective. Now, finally, we’re off to Base Camp. Read on about our trek from Gorakshep to Base Camp.
Tomorrow, all being well, we’ll be attempting to summit Kalapathar before heading down ro Dingboche and all the way back to Lukla over the next few days.