What sort of accommodation can I
Teahouses are generally locally built of timber and are very
comfortable. They usually provide single and double rooms
as well as the occasional dormitory. The dining room is downstairs
around a fire. All food will be cooked to order in the little
kitchen. You should not enter the kitchen unless asked to
do so. The toilet facilities will be outside. Most lodges
provide a mattress, and a quilt or blanket. It’s a good
idea to always have a sleeping bag, sleeping mat and perhaps
an inflatable pillow. Most places will provide you with a
lock for your room, but you may prefer to use one of your
own. Theft is almost unheard of from the lodgeowners; security
is more of a risk around other Westerners.
Along the way there are a few ‘upmarket’ places
to stay, or even just relax for lunch: Everest View Hotel
(Syangboche), Gokyo Resort (Gokyo), 8000 Inn (Lobuche) and
Jomsom Mountain Resort (Jomsom). For an extra charge we can
arrange a night’s stay at any of these before you leave
Kathmandu, or you may just like to wait till the urge overtakes
you on the trail - don’t forget those US dollars!
If you choose a camping trek, a tent will be provided if you
do not have your own. We provide a kitchen tent, dining tent
and toilet tents for all camping treks. You should bring your
own sleeping bags, mats and whatever other home comforts you
need. We usually camp in or near a village, which allows you
to buy luxury items such as chocolate, beer or soft drinks,
which we do not carry with us. We also provide a limited amount
of toilet paper and facilities for hand and face washing before
meals. You will also get a bowl of hot water each morning
in your tent for a quick scrub up.
What sort of food can I expect?
Most teahouses cook a delicious range of mostly vegetarian
fare. Pasta, tuna bakes, noodles, potatoes, eggs, dhal bhat,
bread, soups, fresh vegetables (variety depends on the season)
and even some desserts like apple pies, pancakes, and some
interesting attempts at custard. You will find a lot of garlic
on the menu because it assists with acclimatization –
eat some every day. In many larger villages you may find some
meat on the menu. You can always get hot chocolate, tea, and
hot lemon drinks, as well as soft drinks, and treats like
chocolate and crisps.
If you are on a camping trek the cook can prepare specially
requested food if you advise before leaving Kathmandu. In
any case, you will have similar fare to teahouses, except
that along the way we may buy some fresh local produce such
as fish, chicken or cheese to supplement the supplies. And
the cost of all the food we prepare is included in the price
of the camping treks – you can eat as much as you like.
Whichever option you choose, you can be assured that the food
is fresh, nutritious and tasty.
If you have any special dietary requirements please advise
us in advance so that we can make the necessary arrangements.
happens if I get sick?
The most important thing is DON’T PANIC. You should
ALWAYS ensure that you have a well-stocked and appropriate
medical kit as well as sufficient insurance in case you
should have to be evacuated. A slight case of diarrhoea
is to be expected, as well as sprains and muscle aches –
all a part of walking in the hills. Altitude sickness is
extremely dangerous but mostly avoidable if you follow a
few simple rules: trek high and sleep low, drink at least
2 litres of water per day (not including beer or soft drinks!),
and BE SENSIBLE. If you feel shortness of breath, a slight
headache or dizziness, tell your porter/guide and rest immediately.
Lie down, drink water. If you are still feeling unwell you
may consider going down a few hundred metres. Do not pretend
you are okay, and do not go down alone. A descent of a few
hundred metres overnight may be enough to make you fully
able to start trekking again tomorrow. For more information,
please go to: www.high-altitude-medicine.com This excellent
site will tell you all you need to know, and also includes
a phonetic Nepali questionnaire for your porter. Porters
are just as prone to altitude sickness as everyone else
How can I look after my porter?
Always make sure that your porter has enough warm and waterproof
clothes – if he does not ask us to provide some. Keep
an eye on your porter (just as he will keep an eye on you)
when on the trail. The porter is working for you and his
welfare is your responsibility – if he is unwell give
him the day off and watch him. If he shows signs of altitude
sickness you must be firm and take him down to a safer altitude.
Never leave him to wander alone down the mountain. Make
sure that he has sufficient food and drink.
Your porter can also be your friend – talk to him
about his family. Most porters are students trying to earn
extra cash, or married with very young families. These guys
can be away from home for months on end carrying packs up
and down hills. It’s a hard life and small gestures
of appreciation, like buying them a cup of tea, never go
astray. Mountain Club is a member of IPPG (International Porter
Protection Group) – go to their website at www.ippg.net
for more information.
What’s the weather
going to be like?
Weather in the mountains is notoriously difficult to predict.
Of course, at night it is generally cold, and in winter
the days can be quite beautiful if the sun is out. There
can be snow or rain storms any time of the year. Trekking
in spring (March – April) is particularly lovely as
the rhododendrons are in full bloom, and the mountains still
have plenty of high snow to enhance your photos. You need
to be aware that it can get pretty hot and sunstroke can
be a risk. Good polarising sunglasses or glacier glasses
(not trendy fashion ones) for high altitudes/winter treks,
and a large brimmed hat are a necessity. It is also important
to make sure that you can stay warm and dry in just about
any conditions. Expect the unexpected!
If unsure about the weather conditions on the trail ask
What if I take more or less time
on my trek than I had planned and paid for?
A trekking holiday should never be about making it to the
final point quickly. In fact, most of the time it isn’t
even about the end point. Walking in the mountains is about
enjoying the beauty of the people and places. You pay the
porter/guide per day, and any differences can be made up
on your return. Remember, it’s your holiday and so
long as you enjoy your trip the time taken is mostly irrelevant.
You may find that weather or illness means you have to turn
back, sit it out or take another route. No problem!
if the guide/porter leaves me alone the trail?
Sometimes the porter/guide may go on ahead if you are walking
slowly on an easy trail, usually to find a good place to
eat or stay the night. However, this doesn’t mean
that you have been abandoned. Mountain Club porters or guides
will NEVER leave you for long periods and will never steal
your bag or belongings. Guaranteed.