Braemar College Nepal Everest Community Project Service 2019

Braemar College Nepal Everest Community Project Service 2019

Trip Highlights

  • Three day school community project working alongside the Sherpa people from the Everest region
  • Stunning views of Mount Everest
  • Accommodation staying in our permanent campsites and eco lodges
  • Sherpa Culture
  • Namche Bazaar
  • Thyangboche Monastery
  • Fully supported trek including 3 hearty meals per day prepared by our cooks
  • Visit Everest Base Camp
  • Himalayan Mountain flight from Kathmandu to Lukla
  • Sightseeing in Kathmandu Durbar Square, Swayambhunath (the Monkey Temple), Pashupatinath (a major Hindu shrine) and the giant Buddhist stupa at Bodhnath
  • Visiting key sights set up by Sir Edmund Hillary including the Khumjung Hillary School

Trip Summary

This adventure has been crafted using our Travel, Give, Grow philosophy and gives travellers a unique hands on opportunity to help a remote community in need. Our itinerary provides an opportunity to trek to the Base Camp of the highest mountain in the world for uninterrupted views of Mt Everest. We trek the more remote trails along the far side of the Khumbu valley, witnessing Sir Edmund Hillarys legacy along the way. We savour the high mountain views from our selected permenent campsites located away from the main trails, in the company of our Sherpa guides, whose knowledge and passion for trekking in the Khumbu add a further dimension to this memorable trek. This is a great hands on opportunity to give something back to a remote community in need as well as experiencing the adventure of a lifetime.

Suitability

On a moderate trek physical activity will generally not exceed eight hours in a day, and altitudes generally not exceeding 5,500 metres. On a moderate adventure the physical activity is sustained and travelers should be comfortable with occasional rough terrain. At any stage of a moderate trek you can expect long steep climbs and descents and a wide range of weather conditions. An example of an average day on moderate trek could include several ascents and descents of 500 metres or more, level ground is rare in the mountains. To prepare for a moderate trek you should begin training at least four to five months before your departure. As a guideline, an hour of aerobic exercise three to four times per week would be considered a minimum requirement. The best preparation is bushwalking involving relatively steep ascents and descents. If you can manage a couple of valley floor to ridgeline ascents per bushwalk, albeit with stops along the way, you will cope with a moderately graded trek. Speed is not important, stamina, confidence and continuity are.

Itinerary

After all the planning and preparation the wait is finally over! Make your way to Melbourne Airport for your flight to Kathmandu. On arrival in Kathmandu you will be met by your group leader at the airport and transferred to your well located hotel. Here a pre-trek briefing will be given around 5pm where your Nepalese guide will run through the arrangements for the coming days and arrangements will be made for the distribution of your kit bag, sleeping bag and down/fibrefill jacket before heading out to dinner. Overnight: Radisson Hotel

Meals:  Nil

We transfer to the airport for the 45 minute flight to the STOL airstrip at Lukla. This was the airstrip built by Sir Edmund Hillary and his friends to service the Everest Region when he began his work of building schools and hospitals for the Sherpa people. It is a memorable flight, with marvellous views of the Eastern Himalaya. At Lukla we are immediately impressed by the scale of the huge peaks that surround the village but this is only a foretaste of what is to come. Our crew assemble and we head downhill towards the Dudh Kosi, a raging river that flows from the highest peaks. The broad and well-marked trail meanders around fields of potatoes and buck-wheat and passes through small villages, as we pass rows of tree dahlia to make our way to our first overnight stop and the home to our Community Project at Ghat. Overnight: Ghat permanent campsite

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning we will start our Community Project for the next 3 days at the nearby Ghat school. There will be many roles to undertake at the school. A local crew will be on hand to divide the roles and work together as a team. This is a wonderful way to give something back to the Sherpa people of the region and a hands on way to help a community in need.

Meals:  B,L,D

Today we bid farewell to our new friends in the community of Ghat and cross and re-cross the thundering glacial river, named "Dudh" (milk) Kosi (river) because of its colour. Sections of today's walk are through pine forest and cleared areas reveal terraced fields and a variety of crops. We pass small groups of donkeys and yaks carrying trading goods and trek-gear along the trail. Spectacular mountain peaks unfold above us and seem to hover above the tree-line as they rise above the deep river valley. Shortly after leaving camp we cross the Kusum Khola, a tributary stream to the Dudh Kosi, and the peak of Kusum Kangru (6369 m) can be seen to the East, at the head of the valley. Further along the trail, across the valley to the North-West, Nupla (5885 m) and Kongde Ri (6093 m) rise above the forested ridges. At a turn of the trail, Thamserku (6808 m) rises majestically, seemingly from the river floor. We will see our first Mani walls today. These stone structures are a compilation of many stone tablets, each with the inscription "Om Mani Padme Hum" which translates to "Hail to the jewel in the lotus", and is mantra (chant) venerated by Buddhists and Brahmans alike. Buddhists will walk to the left of these Mani Walls and chortens, but you may notice that people of the lowlands who have no knowledge of Buddhism do not follow this practice. The allure of the mountains is hard to resist, but we must be patient, as it is very important to acclimatise slowly and thereby fully appreciate our time at higher altitude. Today's walk is not a long one, but a very important day for acclimatizing.

Meals:  B,L,D

Today we bid farewell to our new friends in the community of Ghat and we pass through the gates of the Sagamartha National Park. The establishment of this national park is a significant attempt to stem the use of fire-wood in the area and the few local people who have a permit to cut wood must gain approval from the authorities on the basis of it being primarily for their personal use. We follow the river course to the confluence of the Dudh Kosi and the Bhote Kosi, and cross a spectacular high bridge before commencing our ascent to the village of Namche Bazaar, the Sherpa 'capital' of Nepal. It is a tough climb as the trail passes through forest of pine to a vantage point that provides our first view of Mt Everest. The trail continues to climb and meander to Namche, and the sight of this prosperous village spread within a horse-shoe shaped valley opposite the beautiful peak of Kongde Ri is worth every step. After lunch you may wish to peruse the Tibetan trader's stalls or the Sherpa shops in search of a bargain. Overnight: Permanent campsite above Namche village

Meals:  B,L,D

Sagarmartha National Park Headquarters just above our accommodation offers a very interesting display of photographs, memorabilia and information on the park, and the hill above is a wonderful vantage point for the spectacular view up the Imja Khola Valley towards Everest. The change from the narrow lowland valleys to the broad glacial ones is immediately obvious. The steep-sided glacial valley before us gradually winds towards the base of Everest, broken only by the moraines left by retreating glaciers. Its more gradual rate of climb is a blessing for those trekking higher. Towering to over 4000 metres above the valley floor, spectacular peaks seem to engulf us. Around us are Taweche (6542 m), Thamserku (6808 m), Kantega (6685 m), Ama Dablam (6856 m), Nuptse (7896 m) and Lhotse (8511 m). The greatest of all, Mt Everest (8848 m), rises at the head of the valley. Those who are fit and acclimatising well may wish to take the optional morning walk to the Everest View Hotel where spectacular views of Everest and Ama Dablam may be seen. Overnight: Permanent campsite above Namche village

Meals:  B,L,D

The walk to Deboche via Thyangboche is one of the most spectacular trekking days in Nepal. The trail meanders easily around the ridges and Everest can be clearly seen on the horizon ahead before we descend through splendid rhododendron forests for lunch. After lunch we cross the Dudh Kosi and begin the ascent to the top of a long ridge which flows from the summit of Kantega. Our trail takes us through pine and rhododendron forest, and, as this is a devout Buddhist region, the wildlife is unharmed and not too shy. As a result there is a possibility that we may see Himalayan Thar, Musked Deer or pheasants in the forest and around our campsite. As we approach the ridgeline we pass through a traditional gateway and around a chorten before cresting the ridge onto a wide grassy meadow at the monastery village of Thyangboche. The monastery was re-built with the assistance of Sir Edmund Hillary after it was destroyed by fire in 1989. The views of the Everest massif, as well as all the other major peaks of the area are astounding. After a rest and visit to the monastery we head downhill to Deboche and our camp for the night.

Meals:  B,L,D

The early morning mountain views from the monastery are outstanding. Everest, Lhotse and Nuptse are at the head of the valley, their line of sight flanked by Tawatse on one side, and Ama Dablam on the other. Almost directly above us are Kantega and Thamserku. Completing a 360-degree panorama of mountains are Khumblia and Kongde Ri which encircle us from across the valley. From Thyangboche we head down to cross the Imja Khola before an easy climb along a wide, open trail to the small village of Pangboche (3901m). We may take a slight detour to visit the Pangboche Gompa - the oldest monastery in the Khumbu, said to be over 300 years old. The views of Ama Dablam, one of the Himalaya's most stunning peaks, are spectacular. Continuing on, we cross the river again and trek up to Dingboche, situated just beneath the impressive Ama Dablam.

Meals:  B,L,D

We are gaining altitude and it is important that we move at a slow, steady pace. The slopes are quite barren now as we have moved above the tree line. Views of different peaks, such as Cholatse and Lobuche, unfold before us in this contrasting and spectacular landscape. We move up the Dhugla Ridge and onto moraine towards Khumbu Glacier. Rock cairns can be seen, many of which are dedicated to the memory of climbers attempting the high mountains of the area, including Everest. The temperatures drop here as we are more exposed with our camp situated amongst this glacial moraine. We enjoy spectacular views all day today of Pumori and Nuptse. The hill above the town affords fine sunset views of Nuptse. Overnight: We stay in a lodge in the village of Lobuche.

Meals:  B,L,D

We trek alongside the Khumbu Glacier as the path winds over the rocky moraine towards the settlement of Gorak Shep. We are high, among the glaciers of the world's highest peaks. At the junction of two large glaciers and nestled in an amphitheatre of peaks, this campsite is spectacular. Pumori (7145m), Lingtren (6697m) surround our camp. Following our arrival at Gorak Shep we have an early lunch before ascending Kala Pattar. Kala Pattar is not a Nepali name but a Hindi name and translates to "black rock". From these black rocks atop the hill the views are spectacular. Most eyes are locked on the mass of Everest and its rocky buttresses immediately before us. Many of the famous ascent routes are quite clear. Below us the Khumbu Glacier snakes towards the icefall and Western Cwm. We can see the area where expeditions set their base camp but the original site was at Lake Camp, now known as Gorak Shep. Take a look in every direction and soak it in. The view south and our route out, is particularly beautiful. The air is clear and the sun is strong but as the sun sets it becomes very cold. Sunsets here can be stunning. Overnight: Gorak Shep

Meals:  B,L,D

Today is a challenging day. By camping at Gorak Shep we can get an early start and walk to Base Camp. Although it has undoubtedly been a cold night we have time to ascend to the historic site and enjoy it to the fullest. Return to Gorak Shep and then back to Lobuche. Overnight: We stay in a lodge in the village of Lobuche

Meals:  B,L,D

Today we continue our trek down the valley back to Deboche.

Meals:  B,L,D

Today we continue our trek down to Namche, stopping in at Khumjung, the location of the largest school in the Khumbu - the Khumjung Hillary School. We will have the opportunity to visit the school whilst we are here before continuing to the trade heart of the Everest region, Namche Bazaar.

Meals:  B,L,D

Retracing our steps along the valley, we pass through a variety of settlements and forests before a gentle climb to Lukla. We savour our final mountain sunsets of the trek as we complete this exhilarating journey. Our last evening of the trek is a good time to have a small party for all the team, especially the porters who will return to their villages from here. There is usually lots of music, dancing and singing and if we are lucky, one of the superb cakes that our Nepali chefs are renowned for.

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning we fly to Kathmandu, a thrilling flight over forests, fields and villages, with the Himalaya in the background. On arrival, we transfer to the hotel. The rest of the day is at leisure. Overnight: Radisson Hotel

Meals:  B

There are a million things to see in Kathmandu and we recommend you spend this day wandering the town. The old Royal Palace, Durbar Square, Swayambhunath (the Monkey Temple), Pashupatinath (a major Hindu shrine) and the giant Buddhist stupa at Bodhnath are absolute musts. Our W.E. staff can arrange a guide and/or transport should you wish, or you can head off armed with a map and let the day unfold. Overnight: Radisson Hotel

Meals:  B

Our trip finishes today with a transfer to the airport for our flight to Melbourne.

Meals:  B

What's Included

  • International airfare ex Melbourne
  • 18 breakfasts, 15 lunches and 15 dinners
  • Braemar College teachers escorting the journey
  • return airport transfers
  • flights Kathmandu/Lukla/Kathmandu US$236 approx
  • expert bilingual guide and group medical kit
  • good quality accommodation in Kathmandu
  • trek pack including sleeping bag, down or fibre filled jacket and insulated mat
  • souvenir World Expeditions kit bag
  • all park entrance fees and trekking permits
  • porters to carry all personal and group equipment and porter's insurance
  • sightseeing and site entry fees in Kathmandu
  • accommodation in permanent campsites and eco lodges

What's Not Included

  • Lunch & dinner in Kathmandu
  • Bottled water and aerated drinks
  • Items of a personal nature such as phone calls, laundry, etc
  • Tips
  • Visa
  • Travel Insurance
  • Community service materials and local labour fource. Approximate cost USD$3000 to be fundraised

Upcoming Travel Dates

 

AT A GLANCE

Duration:19 Days
Countries:Nepal
Starting Point:Kathmandu
Activities:Trekking
Grade:Moderate  Click for more information
Trip Code:SOG5604