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Summiting Kalapathar – Day 15 – Trek To Everest Base Camp


Modified: September 26, 2023

by Alyssa Johnstone



Embarking on the journey to Everest Base Camp is a dream for many adventure enthusiasts. Situated in the heart of the stunning Himalayas, Everest Base Camp offers breathtaking views, challenging terrains, and an opportunity to witness the majesty of Mount Everest up close. It is a trek that tests one’s physical endurance and mental resilience, but the rewards are extraordinary.


The Everest Base Camp Trek takes you through picturesque landscapes, remote Sherpa villages, and iconic landmarks. Each step brings you closer to the ultimate destination – Everest Base Camp, the starting point for climbers attempting to summit the world’s highest peak. The trek is a unique experience that allows you to immerse yourself in the culture and natural beauty of Nepal.


Throughout the trek, you will be accompanied by experienced guides and Sherpas who will share their knowledge of the region’s history, culture, and traditions. You will have the opportunity to interact with the local Sherpa community, known for their resilience and mountaineering expertise. Their warm hospitality and cheerful demeanor will make your journey even more memorable.


This article will provide an in-depth account of Day 15 of the Everest Base Camp Trek, which is a pivotal day as you make your way to Everest Base Camp. Read on to discover the challenges, highlights, and preparations required for this adventurous leg of the journey.


Overview of the Everest Base Camp Trek

The Everest Base Camp Trek is one of the most popular and iconic treks in the world. It takes you on a remarkable journey through the Khumbu region of Nepal, offering mesmerizing views of snow-capped peaks, serene valleys, and charming Sherpa villages. The trek starts from Lukla, a small town located at an altitude of 2,860 meters, and continues all the way to Everest Base Camp at an altitude of 5,364 meters.


The entire trek spans approximately 130 kilometers round trip and typically takes around 12-14 days to complete. It is a challenging trek that requires a good level of fitness and endurance, as you will be trekking for several hours each day, often on steep and rocky trails. However, the sense of accomplishment and the breathtaking sights along the way make it all worthwhile.


During the trek, you will pass through various iconic landmarks and villages, including Namche Bazaar, Tengboche Monastery, Dingboche, and Gorak Shep. These places not only provide much-needed rest and acclimatization but also offer a glimpse into the rich culture, traditions, and lifestyle of the Sherpa people.


The trail to Everest Base Camp is adorned with prayer flags, mani walls (stone walls with carved prayers), and Buddhist monasteries, adding a spiritual touch to the journey. You will encounter suspension bridges, glacial rivers, and stunning vistas of snow-capped mountains like Ama Dablam, Lhotse, and, of course, Mount Everest itself.


One of the highlights of the trek is reaching Kala Patthar, a famous vantage point situated at an altitude of 5,545 meters. From here, you can witness a panoramic view of the Everest massif, including the majestic Everest summit. The sunrise and sunset views from Kala Patthar are nothing short of spectacular and create lifelong memories.


Overall, the Everest Base Camp Trek is a once-in-a-lifetime adventure that offers a unique blend of natural beauty, cultural immersion, and personal achievement. It is a challenging yet rewarding experience that will leave you with a deep appreciation for the indomitable spirit of the Himalayas and its people.


Day 15: Trek to Everest Base Camp

Day 15 of the Everest Base Camp Trek marks a significant milestone as you make your way to the base of the world’s highest mountain. It is a thrilling and physically demanding day, as you navigate through challenging terrains, cross glaciers, and overcome the effects of high altitude.


The trek to Everest Base Camp from Gorak Shep, the last village before the base camp, is approximately a 3-kilometer uphill climb. You will begin early in the morning, as the weather is usually clear and the views are at their best. The trail initially leads you along a rocky path, with occasional ascents and descents.


As you progress further, you will encounter the Khumbu Glacier, a massive frozen river of ice that presents a formidable obstacle. You will need to navigate your way through the glacier, carefully stepping on the marked paths and avoiding crevasses. This part of the trek requires caution and the guidance of experienced guides and Sherpas.


As you approach Everest Base Camp, the landscape changes dramatically. The surroundings become more barren and rugged, with towering snow-covered peaks in every direction. The sight of the Khumbu Icefall, a treacherous section of the mountain notorious for its large crevasses and shifting ice towers, serves as a reminder of the challenging journey undertaken by mountaineers attempting to climb Mount Everest.


Reaching Everest Base Camp is a surreal and emotional moment. You will be standing at an altitude of 5,364 meters, with the iconic Khumbu Icefall and the mighty Everest in your sight. It is a place filled with excitement and anticipation, as climbers from all over the world gather here to begin their ascent of the legendary mountain. Take some time to soak in the atmosphere, capture photos, and reflect on your own accomplishment.


After spending some time at Everest Base Camp, you will retrace your steps back to Gorak Shep, where you will spend the night. The return journey allows you to appreciate the awe-inspiring beauty of the Himalayan landscape from a different perspective. The feeling of fulfillment and achievement as you make your way back is truly indescribable.


It is important to note that reaching Everest Base Camp is the ultimate goal, and actually climbing to the summit of Mount Everest requires extensive training and mountaineering skills. The base camp serves as a temporary home for climbers, providing them with a safe and strategic base to acclimatize and plan their ascent.


Day 15 of the Everest Base Camp Trek, trekking to Everest Base Camp and back to Gorak Shep, is undoubtedly one of the most memorable and rewarding days of the entire journey. It is a testament to your determination, resilience, and love for adventure.


Highlights of Day 15

Day 15 of the Everest Base Camp Trek is filled with remarkable highlights that make it a truly unforgettable experience. Here are some of the main highlights of this adventurous day:

  1. Reaching Everest Base Camp: The ultimate highlight of the day is reaching Everest Base Camp itself. Standing at an altitude of 5,364 meters, you will be in awe of the stunning views of the surrounding Himalayan peaks and the iconic Khumbu Icefall.
  2. The Khumbu Glacier: Navigating through the Khumbu Glacier is an exhilarating experience. This enormous frozen river of ice poses both physical and mental challenges as you carefully make your way through its treacherous terrain.
  3. Encountering Mount Everest: Throughout the trek, you catch glimpses of Mount Everest from various viewpoints. But on Day 15, you get the closest and most awe-inspiring view of the world’s highest peak, creating a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
  4. Feeling the Base Camp Atmosphere: As you arrive at Everest Base Camp, you can soak in the vibrant and energetic atmosphere. Interacting with fellow trekkers and mountaineers from different parts of the world, you get a sense of the camaraderie and shared passion for adventure.
  5. Photographic Opportunities: Day 15 offers countless opportunities for capturing breathtaking photographs. From the dramatic landscapes to the striking Khumbu Icefall and the iconic view of Everest, every moment is worth preserving.
  6. Triumphant Sense of Achievement: Standing at Everest Base Camp, you will experience an overwhelming sense of accomplishment. It is the culmination of days of trekking, pushing your limits, and overcoming challenges. This achievement will stay with you for a lifetime.

These highlights, combined with the surrounding natural beauty and the vibrant atmosphere of the Everest region, make Day 15 an extraordinary day on your trek to Everest Base Camp. It is a day that will leave a lasting impression and provide memories that you will cherish for years to come.


Preparation for the Trek

Embarking on the Everest Base Camp Trek requires careful preparation to ensure a safe and enjoyable journey. Here are some key aspects to consider before setting off on this epic adventure:

  1. Physical Fitness: The Everest Base Camp Trek is a challenging endeavor that demands a good level of physical fitness. Prior to the trek, engage in regular exercise routines that focus on cardiovascular fitness, strength training, and endurance. It is advisable to consult with a medical professional before beginning any training program.
  2. Acclimatization: Acclimatization is crucial to avoid altitude sickness during the trek. Plan for rest days in Namche Bazaar and Dingboche to acclimatize to the increasing altitude. This involves ascending slowly, hydrating well, and listening to your body for any signs of altitude-related issues.
  3. Packing: Pack wisely and consider the essentials. A sturdy backpack, comfortable trekking shoes, warm layers, waterproof clothing, a down jacket, a hat, gloves, sunglasses, a high SPF sunscreen, a water bottle, and basic medical supplies are among the items you should include. Additionally, don’t forget to carry a good-quality sleeping bag and a headlamp.
  4. Training: Trekking at high altitudes requires building stamina and endurance. Prior to the trek, engage in regular aerobic exercises such as hiking, jogging, cycling, or swimming to improve your cardiovascular endurance and build leg strength.
  5. Mental Preparedness: The Everest Base Camp Trek is not just physically demanding, but it also tests your mental resilience. Prepare yourself mentally for long days of trekking, challenging terrains, and potential weather changes. Cultivate a positive mindset to overcome obstacles and enjoy the journey.
  6. Travel Insurance: It is essential to have comprehensive travel insurance that covers medical emergencies and evacuation. Check that it includes coverage for high-altitude trekking activities and ensure you have a copy of the policy readily available.
  7. Training on Altitude-related Issues: Familiarize yourself with the symptoms and prevention of altitude sickness, as well as basic first-aid techniques. Attend information sessions or consult with a travel doctor to gain insights into altitude-related issues and how to handle them.

Preparing for the Everest Base Camp Trek is vital to ensure a safe and rewarding experience. Remember to take your time, listen to your body, and enjoy the journey as you make your way to the base camp of the mighty Mount Everest.


Trekking Route

The trekking route to Everest Base Camp spans approximately 130 kilometers round trip, taking you through a diverse and breathtaking landscape. Here is an overview of the main checkpoints along the route:

  1. Lukla (2,860m): The trek begins with a scenic flight from Kathmandu to Lukla, a small mountain town known as the gateway to the Everest region. From Lukla, you start your trek towards the higher altitudes of the Himalayas.
  2. Phakding (2,652m): The first day of trekking takes you from Lukla to Phakding, a charming village situated along the Dudh Koshi River. The trail offers beautiful views of green valleys, flowing rivers, and lush forests.
  3. Namche Bazaar (3,440m): The trail ascends further to Namche Bazaar, the bustling Sherpa town and commercial hub of the Khumbu region. Namche Bazaar offers a blend of modern amenities, local markets, and stunning views of mountains like Thamserku and Kongde Ri.
  4. Tengboche (3,867m): From Namche Bazaar, you trek to Tengboche, home to the famous Tengboche Monastery. The monastery, set against the backdrop of Ama Dablam, provides a serene and spiritual atmosphere for trekkers to rest and soak in the views.
  5. Dingboche (4,410m): Continuing the ascent, you reach Dingboche, a picturesque village known for its stunning views of Lhotse, Island Peak, and other surrounding peaks. Dingboche is also a popular spot for acclimatization and offers a chance to explore the local Sherpa culture.
  6. Lobuche (4,940m): The trail from Dingboche takes you to Lobuche, a small settlement nestled in a frozen barren landscape. From here, trekkers can witness the majestic views of Nuptse, Lobuche Peak, and other iconic peaks of the Everest region.
  7. Gorak Shep (5,170m): The final stop before Everest Base Camp, Gorak Shep, offers basic accommodation and serves as a base for trekkers. From Gorak Shep, you will make the thrilling trek to Everest Base Camp itself.
  8. Everest Base Camp (5,364m): The ultimate destination, Everest Base Camp, is reached by trekking through the Khumbu Glacier and navigating challenging terrains. Standing in the shadows of Mount Everest, you will witness the grandeur of the world’s highest peak.
  9. Kala Patthar (5,545m): For a stunning panoramic view of Everest and the surrounding peaks, many trekkers opt to hike to Kala Patthar. This vantage point offers breathtaking sunrise and sunset views, making it a memorable experience.

The return journey follows a similar route, allowing you to retrace your steps and appreciate the familiar landscapes from a different perspective. The Everest Base Camp Trek route is carefully designed to provide trekkers with an immersive experience in the Himalayas, allowing you to witness the beauty of the region and engage with the Sherpa culture along the way.


Day 15 Itinerary

On Day 15 of the Everest Base Camp Trek, you embark on one of the most exhilarating and memorable segments of the journey. Here is a sample itinerary for Day 15:

  • Starting Point: Gorak Shep (5,170m)
  • Destination: Everest Base Camp (5,364m) and return to Gorak Shep
  • Trek Distance: Approximately 6 kilometers round trip
  • Trek Duration: 6-8 hours

You begin the day early in the morning after a hearty breakfast. The air is crisp, and the weather conditions are often at their best during the early hours. Layer up with warm clothing, put on your trekking boots, and prepare for an adventurous day ahead.


Leaving Gorak Shep, you trek towards Everest Base Camp, following a rocky trail that gradually ascends. The initial part of the trek takes you across a flat expanse, but soon you will encounter the Khumbu Glacier. Here, you need to navigate through the glacier carefully, following the marked paths to ensure your safety.


The journey through the glacier presents a unique challenge as you carefully make your way over icy sections and navigate around crevasses. Experienced guides and Sherpas will provide guidance and support throughout this section.


As you approach Everest Base Camp, the landscape becomes more barren, and the views of towering mountains and glaciers become even more awe-inspiring. Reaching Everest Base Camp is a moment of great excitement and accomplishment. You will take some time to soak in the atmosphere, interact with fellow trekkers and climbers, and capture memorable photographs.


After spending quality time at Everest Base Camp, taking in the stunning views and relishing the triumph of reaching this iconic location, you begin the trek back to Gorak Shep. The return journey allows you to appreciate the surrounding landscapes from a different perspective, offering new angles and perspectives on the majestic Himalayan scenery.


Once you reach Gorak Shep, you can rest and reflect on the incredible journey you have undertaken. Enjoy a hot meal, replenish your energy, and relive the highlights of the day with your fellow trekkers.


It is important to note that treks can vary in length and can be subject to changes based on weather conditions, group dynamics, and individual fitness levels. Always follow the advice of your guides and be prepared for any adjustments to the itinerary to ensure a safe and enjoyable trek.


Day 15 of the Everest Base Camp Trek, with its trek to Everest Base Camp and return to Gorak Shep, is an extraordinary day filled with adventure, achievement, and breathtaking sights that will make it an experience to cherish for a lifetime.


Challenges and Difficulties

The Everest Base Camp Trek is a physically demanding and challenging adventure that comes with its own set of obstacles. Here are some of the main challenges and difficulties you may encounter along the way:

  1. Altitude: The high altitude is perhaps the most significant challenge of the trek. As you gain elevation, the air becomes thinner, and oxygen levels decrease. This can lead to symptoms of altitude sickness, such as headaches, nausea, and fatigue. Proper acclimatization, staying hydrated, and listening to your body are essential to mitigate these challenges.
  2. Trekking Duration: The Everest Base Camp Trek spans approximately 12-14 days, depending on the specific itinerary. The long duration of daily trekking, averaging 6-8 hours, can be physically and mentally demanding. It requires endurance, stamina, and mental resilience to keep going day after day.
  3. Changing Weather: The weather conditions in the Everest region can be unpredictable and harsh, even during the peak trekking season. You may experience sudden changes in temperature, high winds, and occasional snowfall. It is crucial to be prepared with proper gear and clothing to withstand varying weather conditions.
  4. Gradient and Terrain: The trek involves steep ascents and descents, often on uneven and rocky terrain. Walking on these trails demands good balance and strength. The long and arduous stretches can take a toll on your muscles and joints, so it is important to have appropriate hiking boots and trekking poles for stability and support.
  5. Basic Facilities: Along the trekking route, the availability of basic facilities, such as electricity, hot water, and Wi-Fi, may be limited or unreliable. Accommodation can also be basic, with shared bathroom facilities. It is important to manage expectations and adapt to the rustic environment of the trek.
  6. Remote Location: The Everest Base Camp Trek takes you into remote and isolated areas of the Himalayas with limited access to medical facilities. It is essential to carry a well-stocked first-aid kit and have travel insurance that covers emergency medical evacuation, in case of any unforeseen circumstances.
  7. Physical and Mental Fatigue: Over the course of the trek, you may experience physical fatigue from the long hours of walking and climbing. The mental challenge of pushing yourself out of your comfort zone and overcoming obstacles can also be exhausting. Building mental resilience and maintaining a positive mindset are key to overcoming these challenges.

Despite these challenges, the Everest Base Camp Trek is an incredibly rewarding and transformative experience. With proper preparation, training, and the support of experienced guides and Sherpas, you can overcome these difficulties and emerge with a profound sense of accomplishment and memories that will last a lifetime.


Accommodation Options

During the Everest Base Camp Trek, you will find a variety of accommodation options that cater to different preferences and budgets. Here are the main types of accommodation available along the trekking route:

  1. Teahouses: Teahouses are the most common type of accommodation along the trekking route. They are basic lodges that offer rooms with twin beds or bunk beds. The amenities are simple, and the rooms may have shared bathrooms. Teahouses also have common dining areas where you can enjoy meals and interact with fellow trekkers.
  2. Luxury Lodges: In recent years, a few luxury lodges have been established in some of the major trekking villages. These lodges provide more upscale accommodations with private bathrooms, comfortable beds, hot showers, and sometimes even WiFi access. These facilities offer a higher level of comfort and are ideal for those seeking a more luxurious experience.
  3. Tent Camping: For a more adventurous experience, some trekkers opt for tent camping. Camping allows you to experience the serenity of the Himalayas up close. However, keep in mind that carrying camping equipment can add weight to your backpack, and finding suitable camping spots can be challenging in certain areas.

Regardless of the type of accommodation you choose, it is important to manage your expectations. As you ascend to higher altitudes, facilities become more basic, and the availability of amenities may vary. Heating may be limited, and electricity may be available only for a specific number of hours in the evenings. It is advisable to carry a warm sleeping bag to ensure a comfortable night’s rest.


It is recommended to book your accommodations in advance during the peak trekking season (March to May and October to November) to secure a spot. However, be prepared for the possibility of changes in plans due to weather conditions or unforeseen circumstances. Flexibility and adaptability are key when it comes to accommodation options along the trek.


Lastly, remember that trekking in the Everest region is not just about the accommodations, but also about the incredible natural beauty, cultural experiences, and personal growth. Embrace the simplicity of the accommodations and focus on embracing the journey itself.


Safety Measures

Undertaking the Everest Base Camp Trek requires thorough preparation and adherence to safety measures to ensure a safe and enjoyable journey. Here are some important safety measures to consider:

  1. Acclimatization: Acclimatization is crucial to avoid altitude sickness, which can be a serious concern in high-altitude environments. Take enough rest days along the route to allow your body to adjust to the increasing altitude. Ascend slowly and hydrate well to minimize the risk of altitude-related issues.
  2. Training and Fitness: Prioritize physical fitness and endurance training before embarking on the trek. Engage in regular cardiovascular exercises, strength training, and endurance-building activities to prepare your body for the demands of the trek.
  3. Follow Guide’s Instructions: Always listen to the instructions and guidance of your experienced guides and Sherpas. They have extensive knowledge of the terrain, weather conditions, and safety protocols. Trust their expertise and make sure to communicate any concerns or issues you may have.
  4. Stay Hydrated: Proper hydration is essential at high altitudes. Drink plenty of water throughout the trek to stay hydrated and prevent altitude-related ailments. Avoid consuming untreated water and opt for bottled water or use water purification tablets.
  5. Food Safety: Follow hygienic practices when it comes to food consumption. Choose well-cooked and properly prepared meals to minimize the risk of foodborne illnesses. Carry energy snacks and consider dietary preferences or restrictions when planning your food intake.
  6. Weather Awareness: Stay informed about weather conditions before and during the trek. Be prepared for sudden weather changes and dress accordingly. Carry adequate warm clothing and waterproof gear to protect yourself from cold, wind, and rain.
  7. Walk Wisely: Be cautious while navigating the trails, especially on steep ascents and descents. Use trekking poles for stability and watch your step in rocky or slippery sections. Take breaks when needed and pace yourself to avoid exhaustion or injuries.
  8. Travel Insurance: Ensure that you have comprehensive travel insurance that covers medical emergencies and evacuation in high-altitude regions. Check that the policy includes trekking activities up to the altitude reached during the Everest Base Camp Trek.
  9. Safety Equipment: Carry essential safety equipment such as a basic first-aid kit, a headlamp or flashlight, a whistle, and a pocket knife. These items can prove invaluable in case of emergencies or unexpected situations.
  10. Respect Local Customs: Show respect for the local culture and customs of the Sherpa community. Dress modestly, be mindful of their traditions, and adhere to any guidelines provided by your guides regarding cultural etiquette.

Remember, safety should always be a top priority during the Everest Base Camp Trek. By following these safety measures, being prepared, and staying vigilant, you can ensure a safe and memorable adventure in the magnificent Himalayas.



The Everest Base Camp Trek offers an extraordinary opportunity to embark on a challenging and awe-inspiring journey through the breathtaking landscapes of the Khumbu region in Nepal. It is a trek that tests your physical endurance, mental resilience, and opens up a world of natural beauty and cultural immersion.


From the moment you set foot in Lukla to the exhilarating moment of reaching Everest Base Camp, every step of the trek is filled with breathtaking views, hospitable Sherpa communities, and a deep sense of accomplishment. The trek takes you through remote villages, across suspension bridges, and along steep valleys that offer unparalleled views of Himalayan peaks.


While the trek poses its challenges, including altitude-related concerns and physical demands, proper preparation, acclimatization, and safety measures can ensure a safe and enjoyable experience. Throughout the journey, the companionship of experienced guides and the warm hospitality of the Sherpa people provide support and enrich the overall trekking experience.


The Everest Base Camp Trek is a transformative adventure that allows you to witness the indomitable spirit of the Himalayas and gain a profound appreciation for the natural wonders of this world. It is an opportunity to disconnect from the chaos of everyday life and reconnect with nature, to push your limits and discover the strength within you.


The memories created during the Everest Base Camp Trek will stay with you forever – capturing the stunning views of mountains, sharing laughter and stories around the teahouse tables, and reflecting on the triumphs of reaching Everest Base Camp. It is an experience that fosters personal growth, resilience, and a deep appreciation for the beauty of the world.


Whether you are an adventure enthusiast, a nature lover, or seeking a transformative journey, the Everest Base Camp Trek offers an incredible expedition that will leave you in awe of the mighty Himalayas. So, lace up your boots, embrace the challenge, and set forth on a remarkable adventure to conquer the base of the highest peak on Earth.