Everest Lodge to Lodge Trek
Trip of the Year!
Our new Everest Lodge to Lodge Trek was named one of the ten 2011 best trips of the year by Outside Magazine!
The incomparable beauty of the Himalayas has long beckoned the world's adventurers to Nepal, and with over 25 years' experience operating outstanding treks in the region, REI now offers this award-winning lodge to lodge trek. Our route combines simple and rustic accommodations with great hiking and must-see sites such as magnificent Tengboche Monastery and bustling Namche Bazaar while still allowing enough time to venture off the beaten path in favor of more remote and secluded villages seldom visited by most trekkers. Explore Khumjung, where Sir Edmund Hillary helped build the region's first school and whose monastery houses a mysterious relic – might it actually be the skull of the mythical Yeti? Trek onward to Thame, home to one of the region's oldest monasteries which appears to grow directly out of the mountainside. Trekking through these hidden Sherpa villages is like hiking through time as we experience daily life in these remote agricultural outposts as it has existed in many ways unchanged for decades. Then, trek higher through vast rhododendron forests and enter Tengboche Monastery, the largest and most active in the region, where evening brings the strange and hypnotic sounds of traditional chant, thundering drums and the great resounding horns of the 40+ devout Buddhist monks who live, study and worship here. Throughout our trek we encounter spectacular views of Mount Everest and other legendary Himalayan peaks before ultimately returning to Kathmandu, where we have even more time to discover the gentle and colorful Buddhist and Hindu cultures of this magnificent and ancient city. Experience the awe-inspiring presence of the world's highest peaks and soak in the magic of Nepal and the Everest region on this truly unique and unforgettable lodge to lodge trek with REI.
Note on Accommodations: Lodges in the Everest region are very basic stone structures with unheated rooms, two small beds with simple foam mattresses, a small window, primitive bathrooms (sometimes shared) and very little in the way of amenities. Hot showers are not typically available at our lodges, but are available in some villages along our route at a small additional cost. Our lodging is best described as very rustic and minimal, presenting an alternative to camping for those not wishing to stay in tents, not a luxury trekking experience.
Important Notice: Day 1 is the day you should plan to arrive at the meeting point for the trip. This may require departing your hometown one or more days in advance and traveling on an overnight flight.
Everest Lodge to Lodge Trek Itinerary:
Day 1 Namaste and welcome to vibrant Kathmandu where our adventure begins!
Day 2 Explore the Kathmandu Valley’s most fascinating sites, from Swayambunath Temple to Boudhanath Temple, Patan’s Durbar Square and more.
Day 3 Fly to Lukla where our trek begins and hike to Phakding village.
Day 4 Journey on foot from Phakding village to Namche Bazaar along the Dudh Koshi River.
Day 5 Day hike to our first spectacular views of Everest, Nuptse and Lhotse.
Day 6 Ascend further to renowned Tengboche Monastery, perched high on a ridgeline with spectacular Everest views.
Day 7 Descend to the historic and quaint Sherpa village of Khumjung, where Sir Edmund Hillary helped build the Khumbu’s first school.
Day 8 Trek off the beaten path through remote Sherpa villages to secluded Thame.
Day 9 Explore Thame’s hillside monastery and return to bustling Namche Bazaar.
Day 10 Descend the Dudh Kosi River valley to Phakding through colorful villages and fields.
Day 11 Complete the hiking descent to Lukla and celebrate with your trekking crew.
Day 12 Return flight from Lukla to Kathmandu, weather permitting.
Day 13 Free day to explore more highlights of the Kathmandu Valley on your own (reserve day for return flights in case of inclement weather).
Day 14 Our Everest lodge to lodge trekking adventure ends today in Kathmandu.
Although we do our very best to adhere to the schedule above, this itinerary is subject to change for numerous reasons beyond our control including unexpected weather and terrain conditions.
Please check with us before purchasing your airline tickets to ensure your trip has the necessary minimum number of participants required to operate.
Due to the configuration and capacity of our lodge accommodations, single room arrangements cannot be guaranteed every night of our trip. We will attempt to arrange for single accommodations whenever possible when requested, and travelers who wish not to share a room will be asked to pay the full single supplement noted on the trip itinerary. If you wish to share accommodations, we will assign you a roommate if one is available. If a roommate cannot be found, you will be asked to pay a reduced single fee which is half of the full single supplement and you will have single accommodations assigned to you throughout the trip. Please be advised that there will be a very limited number of single rooms available on a by request basis, if any.
National Park fees, 4 nights hotel in Kathmandu, meals as noted on the itinerary, guides and porters, cooks and commissary crew, rustic lodge accommodations or home-stays, community cooking gear, baggage portage, and airport transfers.
Air transportation to/from Nepal, en route hotel costs (if routing requires an overnight), flights within Nepal (mandatory internal flight – cost subject to change), one breakfast, four lunches, four dinners, visas, any necessary emergency evacuation flight, optional tips to guides and staff, airport taxes, cost of obtaining a passport or medical immunizations, insurance, additional sightseeing options in Kathmandu, and items of a personal nature such as shower fees, liquor or laundry fees.
This trip is rated Moderate Plus [3-4]. Trekking in Nepal is for active people in good health who enjoy hiking. Nepal has an "up and down" topography, there is very little level walking. Upon arrival in Kathmandu, you should be comfortable hiking between 5-8 hours on most days over uneven, rocky and occasionally steep terrain with cumulative daily elevation gains/losses of 1,000-3,000 feet. We expect participants to be fit, experienced hikers in good physical condition. Gear and supplies will be carried by porters or yaks, leaving members free to carry only a daypack containing food, water, fleece jacket/raingear and camera (if desired). No technical climbing or other special abilities are required. However, each person should be equipped with a "spirit of adventure" and be familiar with the physical demands of trekking and travel in undeveloped areas. This trek spends considerable time at altitudes between 11,000' and 13,000'. The trails themselves are only moderate, but at these altitudes hiking will feel more strenuous. A good physical conditioning program should begin prior to departure.
There are two ideal "weather windows" for Nepal. In the spring (from the latter half of March until the first part of May) temperatures are relatively warm; 10° to 15° warmer than in the fall (the latter half of October to December). Spring mornings are bright and clear with the air slowly becoming hazier as the day progresses. The rhododendron forests in springtime are spectacular, with color displays that are "Himalayan" in beauty. May is warm and green with far fewer people – the sense of solitude is much greater than other seasons. However, it is more likely to include rain showers, wet trail conditions, and possible flight delays. The fall season is an ideal time for the best mountain views. The days are typically sunny and clear with moderate temperatures, and the evenings are usually quite cold. Most of our trek takes place between 11,000' and 13,000' in elevation, and we expect spring daytime temperatures from the mid-40s to mid-60s, with nighttime and early morning temperatures in the 30s. We expect fall daytime temperatures from the mid-30s to mid-40s, with nighttime and early morning temperatures below freezing. There is also a chance of snow occurring at high altitude. Your body is typically taking in much less than its normal supply of oxygen, so you might expect temperatures to feel colder than you are accustomed to at home. Also, because lodges in the Everest region are commonly very rustic, your lodging in some villages may only be 10-20° F warmer than the temperature outside. Please note seasonally specific suggestions on our gear list.
This trip is subject to the booking information set forth in the current REI Adventures Reservation Information. Please read this information carefully and call us if you have any questions. A full gear list and pre-departure information is sent upon sign-up. We highly recommend the purchase of travel insurance through REI Adventures. If coverage is purchased at the time of your initial reservation, the 'Pre-existing Conditions Exclusion' is waived (certain exclusions apply).
We look forward to having you join us for the trip of a lifetime! Why wait? Space is limited, reserve your adventure today.
Everest Lodge to Lodge Trek
The key to staying comfortable while on an active trip is layering. To get maximum comfort with minimum weight, you need versatile layers that mix and match to create the right amount of insulation, ventilation and weather protection. This gear list has been created to help you in choosing your equipment for the trip. Try to bring only what is necessary.
Flights to Lukla have a weight restriction of 30 pounds – please pack light and adhere to this list.
- Cooking and eating utensils
- Trip leader first aid kit
- Valid passport
- Copy of first page of passport
- Airline tickets
- Visa form for Nepal (or obtain at Kathmandu airport)
- 4 passport photos
- Duffel bag, extra-large (5,500 - 9,500 cu. in.)
- Small soft-sided suitcase or duffel to store non-trek items left at the hotel in Kathmandu
- Daypack to carry your camera, water bottles, extra clothing
- Luggage tags and locks, 2 sets
- Pillow (travel-size that can fit easily into your duffel)
- Sleeping bag with stuff sack rated for the season as follows: Spring departures: 35°F or less, Fall departures: 20°F or less
- Bring a few lightweight, easily washable items for travel and daily wear
- Comfortable shoes
- Rain jacket with hood, waterproof, breathable and with room for warm layers underneath
- Rain pants (full side zips are convenient)
- Insulated parka/ski jacket (REQUIRED), down or synthetic, able to fit over other warm layers
- Hiking boots, sturdy, ankle-support, water-resistant, well broken-in
- Comfortable shoes for evenings at the lodges
- Midweight fleece or wool sweater
- Fleece pants or tights (see "Optional Field Gear")
- Thermal underwear tops and bottom, synthetic or wool, appropriate for the season as follows...
- Spring: midweight (1 set)
- Fall: midweight (1 set) and expedition weight (1 set)
- Hiking pants/skirt (1)
- Hiking shorts (recommended for men only during Spring departures only)
- Long-sleeve shirts (2)
- T-shirts, synthetic are best
- Hiking socks (5 pair), wool or synthetic
- Liner socks
- Sun hat
- Wool or fleece hat (covers ears)
- Wool or fleece gloves
- Thin liner gloves
- Snow gaiters (Fall departures only)
- Two 1-quart water bottles or one 1-quart water bottle and a hydration system (such as a Camelback). You must bring at least one water bottle, even if you plan to primarily use a hydration pack.
- Flashlight or headlamp (with spare batteries/bulb)
- Pocket knife or multi-tool (in your checked luggage)
- Ear plugs
- Small quantity of favorite energy snacks and electrolyte drink mix
- Sunglasses with strap (side-shields or glacier glasses recommended)
- Sun block and lip balm – SPF 30+
- Toiletry kit
- Medium quick-dry towel
- Personal first aid kit / personal medications
- Hand sanitizer gel or hand wipes
- Several Ziploc plastic bags
- Large, heavy duty plastic trash bags (2)
- Trowel and a full roll of toilet paper in a Ziploc bag
- Feminine health supplies (can be difficult to obtain in Nepal)
- Camera, film/memory cards, spare batteries
- Down or synthetic-filled pants (a wise addition for Fall treks)
- Down booties (Fall treks at night)
- Trekking poles (very highly recommended)
- Knee supports
- Spare contact lenses or glasses
- Games and toys: Frisbee, cards, etc.
- Reading and writing materials
- Passport pouch or money pouch
- Neck pillow for travel
Things to Consider
- Culturally sensitive dressing tips: For women, pants (or Capri length pants) and/or a skirt (mid-calf) is recommended. Tights, hiking shorts and sports tops are not advised unless worn under other clothing. For men, pants are best. Men may wear hiking shorts, but they should be longer, near the knees. Men should never go shirtless.
- Your duffle bag should be able to accommodate all of your trekking gear and clothing. You may want to consider using an extra large duffel so that you have space to carry home all the great gifts and souvenirs you may be purchasing. Be sure to adhere to your airline's baggage size and weight restrictions. Additional charges may apply if you exceed their parameters.
- Cotton is wonderful in warm weather. However, once it becomes wet, it will drain your body heat. Bring wool or synthetics such as Capilene, MTS and Thermax.
- You may find that you will not use every piece of clothing that is on this gear list. However, the list has been created to provide for the full range of weather conditions that you MAY encounter during your trek. Should the weather be unseasonably cold or wet, you will appreciate having this gear and please not seasonally specific suggestions in relation to the departure date you've selected.
- Always test your layers before a trip. Your outer layer should fit easily over the inside ones without binding or bunching up.
- Make sure boots are broken-in. Bring moleskin for foot treatment. Thin liner socks worn under regular hiking socks may minimize the risk of blisters. The liner sock should be synthetic, not cotton. Test your sock combination before you go on the trip.
- It may be difficult to obtain feminine health supplies while in Nepal. Women are advised to bring these items from home.
- Travel clothes, extra gear, and purchases will be left in a storage room at our Kathmandu hotel. Please bring a small bag, luggage tag, and a lock for this purpose.
Feel free to give us a call at (800) 622-2236 should you have any questions regarding the gear list. The staff at our stores and Direct Sales (800-426-4840) will also be happy to help you with gear questions. Or check out www.rei.com/learn. The Expert Advice section on our "Learn" page has great information to help you prepare for your trip.