Day 4 of the trek – currently in Tengboche (4410m/14464ft)

I keep oscillating between awe and struggle as I make my way through the Himalayan mountains, home to some of the tallest mountains in the world. I honestly find it hard to believe that I am actually here! The first couple of days I had to pinch myself nearly every time I lifted my eyes from the rocky trail to see the jagged snowcapped peaks that jut so proudly into the crystal blue sky. Everything in higher altitude appears sharper and more crystalline, maybe it’s the lack of moisture or less air molecules in the air that bring things even closer into focus. It’s awe inspiring to this swamp rat from Florida.

Trekking with Everest in the background

Can see Everest on the left side with a snow plume flowing off the peak. It looks smaller than Lotse to the right but looks can be deceiving

Having lived exclusively in the tropics, the cold so far has been hard to adjust to and it’s only the early days. I dread when we get higher up where the air is even thinner and the elements even harsher, going from temperature extremes in just minutes. A friend of mine told me that when she did this trek, one morning the condensation from her breath on the sleeping bag had frozen over – I didn’t know whether to react in horror or fascination.

I chose to go with Nepal Hiking Team after a recommendation from a fellow hiker and this is the itinerary set out for us (not including hanging out in Kathmandu part):

Day 1: Flight to Lukla, the most dangerous airport in the world in a tiny plane. Honestly, 10/10 would recommend. Then trek to Phakding (2652m/8699ft)

Walking Distance – 8 km, Duration: 3 hours.


Day 2: Phakding to Namche Bazaar (3440m/11283)

Walking Distance – 10 to 12 km, Duration: 6 hours.


Day 3: Acclimatization Day – Hike to Everest View Hotel (3,962m/12995ft)

Walking Distance – 3 to 4 km, Duration: 3 to 4 hours.


Day 4: Namche to Tengboche (3860m/12660ft)

Walking Distance – 10 to 11 km, Duration: 5 hours.


Day 5: Tengboche to Dingboche (4410m/14464ft)

Walking Distance – 11 to 12 km, Duration: 5 hours.


Day 6: Acclimatization Day- Hike to Nagarjun hill and return

Walking Distance – 5 to 6 km, Duration: 4 to 5 hours.


Day 7: Dingboche to Lobuche (4910m/16105ft)

Walking Distance – 11 to 12 km, Duration: 5 hours.


Day 8: Hike to EBC – (5364m/17594ft) and return Gorakshep

Walking Distance – 14 to 15 km, Duration- 8 hours.


Day 9: Gorakshep – Kala Patthar – Pheriche (4210m/13810ft)

Walking Distance – 13 to 14 km, Duration – 7 hours.


Day 10: Pheriche to Namche (3440m/11283)

Walking Distance – 14 to 15 km, Duration- 7 hours.


Day 11: Namche to Lukla (2800m/9184ft)

Walking Distance – 18 to 19 km, Duration – 7 hours.


Day 12: Flight from Lukla to Kathmandu.


The team:

We are a happy team of four (in order from left to right): the porter, one other trekker, the guide, and yours truly. The other trekker, Stefan, is a chuckling German who, with even limited English, is able to communicate effectively with hand gestures, facial expressions, and just speaking German when all else fails. Our porter, Ika, seems to always have a genuine smile despite his unenviable task of carrying our supplies – namely down jackets, sleeping bags, and other cold weather gear. And lastly, our fearless leader,  Paban, who’s dry sense of humor has made me laugh on more than one occasion.

Other than the first day when the Dioxin I took for attitude sickness did not settle well with me, I’ve been bouncing off the walls in excitement to the chagrin of our poor guide, Paban. I wouldn’t be surprised if he puts a leash on the back of my backpack to keep me from breathlessly shooting off down the trail ahead of the others. He’s been teaching me and the other trekker Stefan about some of the Buddhist traditions and beliefs as we pass by mana walls, stupas, and prayer wheels and I’ve been sure to send the prayer wheel spinning in the wish for us to have a healthy and successful trek to Base Camp.

I’ve tried including some pictures of the map we’re using:

Altitude chart of the EVC trek

For the one above, we are following “The Trail to Everest” where you can see our altitude. The map below is the map we’re using which is quite big, so you’ll need to zoom in to actually see what’s going on.

Map of ebc trek


  • Marty durham

    November 5, 2022

    Your parents used to have to put a leash on you when you would ski because you wouldn’t stay with us and we were afraid to go over the edge.


Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: