Everest Three pass trek
Everest region is one of the most explored destinations in Nepal as it has so much to offer. Three passes trek which lies in the Everest region is its ultimate trekking adventure, crossing three passes over 5000m, Kongma La (5535m), Cho La (5380m), and Renjo La (5388m). It is important to know that it is one of the most difficult treks and best suited for experienced trekkers. It follows the route of Everest base camp before splitting off and taking you all over 3 passes which offer an amazing view of the Himalayas and Mount Everest. The trail passes through Sagarmatha National park which includes lots of rare flora and fauna, several Sherpa settlements, remote alpine highland areas, beautiful landscapes, and the Khumbu glacier. Everest three-pass trek provides the thrill and adventure but requires great physical and mental fitness. Some mountaineering skills are also needed for this trek since the passes are frozen. Three pass trek is relatively less explored than an Everest base camp so basically, you can enjoy a peaceful journey on the off-beaten path.
Temperature and weather-
Three pass trek is very challenging in terms of temperature since it is very harsh and extremely cold. The temperature in high passes can be as low as -12⁰C with a wind speed of around 6 mph. The average temperature in the spring season is around 15⁰C during the daytime and 1 at night. During the autumn season, it can be a little cold with a temperature of -5 to -10⁰C.
This trek is a very difficult trek but good weather can help you in many ways. The best time to trek 3 passes is in spring and autumn. The bearable temperature, the clear skies, and atmosphere, stunning views of Rhododendrons and mountains, and the best condition of the trails, all features make these seasons best for trekking.
Food and accommodation
There are enough teahouses throughout the way to Everest three passes. The teahouses are basically run by local Sherpa people. They have basic facilities like a warm room, blankets, and pillows. But they have to be shared with other trekkers as well. Also, the washroom and toilets have to be shared. Sometimes, you can get a single room with attached bathrooms. They also provide home-cooked meals like Dal, Bhat, vegetables, noodles, pasta, soup, and western food. Tea, coffee, soft drinks, hot chocolates, etc are also available on the teahouses. No camping is necessary unless you want to experience the camping trek. Staying in teahouses or lodges may cost up to 5- 10$ (500 -1000 NRS) per night. Teahouses have proper facilities for bathrooms, hot showers, and internet access.
The gateway for the three passes trek is Lukla and the easiest and the fastest way to reach Lukla is to take a flight from Kathmandu which only takes 35 minutes. You can also travel by bus but it is certainly a tiring route. There is no direct connection between Kathmandu and Lukla and you need to travel via Jiri. The flight to Lukla only operates in good weather so it is better to check on the weather before you plan to go. If the flights to Lukla get canceled, you can also take a helicopter ride from Kathmandu to Lukla and which only cost around 150$ to reach but might cost you a little more expensive to return from Lukla.
Electronics and communication
As we all know, the Everest region is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Nepal. Considering this fact, there are several teahouses which provide all kinds of facilities including electricity, telephones or other communication service and the internet. There is no problem with charging your electronics or talking to your friends and families. You can also be updated on your social media. Satellite phones are also available in higher altitudes.
Guides and porters- being one of the most challenging treks, this trek is not recommended for solo travelers or without a guide. Guides have enough knowledge about the directions, accommodations, food, and many more things. A professional guide who can handle the situation is very much important in this trek. They usually charge 40$ per day. Since the trek is long and difficult, it is quite impossible to carry all the stuff by yourself. Porters are more than important in this trek. They usually charge 25-30$ per day.
Permits and fees-
1) Sagarmatha National Park Entry Permit
· NON-SAARC countries- 3000 (excluding VAT)
· SAARC countries- 1500 (excluding VAT)
2) Pasang Lhamu VDC permit – 2000 NRS
3) Trekkers Information Management System card (TIMS)- 1000NRS
Safety and difficulties of EBC
Three passes trek is categorized as a challenging and difficult trek. However, the level of difficulty entirely depends on your physical and mental fitness. But you can build your muscle strength, and make your body flexible by practicing some light exercise, running, and jogging. The trek to three passes is all about walking 5-7 hours per day for at least 15 days. This only reason is enough to make this trek challenging. The trails are rugged, steep, and maybe snowy on off-seasons. The maximum height in this trek can be Kalapathhar (5644m) with other high passes on the way. It is best to complete the three-pass trek counter-clockwise. Clockwise is not recommended due to its steep altitude gain of crossing the Renjo La pass first. There is also a high risk of mountain sickness. The primary cause of altitude sickness is a decrease in the amount of oxygen in the atmosphere. It’s important to carry handheld oximetry. Oxygen saturation below 75% may be a risk.
*Symptoms of Mountain sickness
-Loss of appetite
-Shortness of breath
*Preventing mountain sickness
-Have nutritional food
-Have enough rest
-Avoid smoking and alcohol
*Medicines for mountain sickness
-Ibuprofen, paracetamol (for headache)
-Promethazine (for nausea)
Travel insurance- trekking to high altitudes can always be risky. Travel Insurance is something you might want to do before trekking anywhere. Sometimes in emergency cases, people need to be evacuated through a helicopter and get medical service. So, in such cases, your travel insurance will be bearing the cost for you. Seeing all these benefits,
the government of Nepal has made travel insurance mandatory thing before trekking. However, it is very important to mention the heights and all the places you will be reaching during your trek. Your insurance entirely depends on the details you provided earlier. Travel insurance costs you around 150$ which is good for 1 month.
Visas/passports- if you are not a Nepalese or Indian citizen, then a visa and a passport are mandatory. You can get your Nepalese Visa at Tribhuvan airport in Kathmandu. The passport must hold a visa of a minimum of 6 months.
Clothing and equipment
Water proof pants
Water proof jackets
Beanies and gloves
Warm shirts and t-shirts
Thermal tops and bottoms
Water bottles and water purifiers
Trash bags and tissue papers
Sleeping bags (optional)
Cooking gas (optional)
Cooking utensils (optional)
Passport size photographs