Everest Gokyo Ri trek is an amazing trek in the Everest region of Nepal. But before you plan this trek, along with the rewards of this trek you must be well-informed about the Everest Gokyo Ri trek difficulty.
Everest Gokyo Ri trek is among the longer trekking route. The grade of this trek is difficult. In this trek, you have to walk approx 6-7 hrs daily on various terrains. You will be trekking and staying at altitudes higher than 12,000 ft in 10 days of the trek.
In this trek, you will trek to an altitude of over 17,000 ft fours times. They are at Gokyo Ri summit, Cho La Pass, Everest Base Camp, and the Kala Patthar. The altitude and the long days make this trek very difficult. You may have a difficult time breathing and trekking when the air is thinner is tough.
Everest Base Camp trek may be familiar to most people and on the bucket list for many. But to be true this trial has more variety with grand views of the Everest from the top of Gokyo Ri.
On this trek, you will walk through the five glistening alpine lakes on the way. Then the magnificent Mt Cho Oyu stands right in front of you at Gokyo. And that’s not it. At 17,500 ft on top of Gokyo Ri, look up and you will witness the eight-thousanders in the world -Everest, Lhotse, and Makalu.
Look down and you will see the Ngozumpa glacier- the longest glacier in the Himalayas Well, this is just the Gokyo side and there’s so much more into the Everest side. Safe to say, you are getting the best of both trials.
Yet, before taking this trek one should be aware of the various challenges and difficulties that come along. Being physically fit and fine is crucial. Since you will be walking for hours on daily basis, it can get quite tiring and hectic at times. Plus, the high altitude adds on.
Hence it is best and wise to undergo physical training before the trek. Also, you should have that willpower and dedication to be able to take up any challenge that comes your way.
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Factors Determining Trek Difficulty
There are various factors that determine the difficulty level of any trek, let us discuss them below
There are various routes that alter the duration of the Everest Gokyo Ri trek. You can increase and decrease the number of days according to your preference.
Now, if you choose a shorter package, you will be adjusting the acclimatization days and this means you will be walking for a longer period of time. Doing so can be harsh. And could make your trekking experience difficult.
However, if you choose the longer package. You have enough time for acclimatization allowing your body to adjust to various altitudes.
Various trekking packages include 15 day Gokyo Lakes Trek, Everest Gokyo Ri 18 days. Everest Gokyo Lakes trek via Cho La Pass is also possible. The latter will take 20 days including the day of arrival and departure.
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Weather and Temperature
The weather plays a huge role in determining the Everest Gokyo Ri trek difficulty. The weather in the mountains changes significantly. In every hour you will notice the change in the climatic conditions. And the frequent weather may add difficulty to your trek.
Choosing the best time to take this trek can save you from dealing with problems related to weather such as the cold temperature. The best time to take the Everest Gokyo Ri trek is spring around April and autumn around October.
The average daytime temperature in April is about 15 to 12-degrees Centigrade and a few degrees lower in October. While the night temperature falls to -5 to -10 degrees.
During this time you will get clear mountain views. And the weather is pleasant and stable compared to the winter season which can be very cold with snowfalls.
Also, the trekking trail is not slippery which is most likely an issue while trekking in monsoon. Hence these are some of the reasons why thousands of trekkers prefer to trek during this time.
Trekking to the mountains means climbing to high altitude. And with the increase in altitude, increases the risk of Altitude sickness.
AMS ( Acute mountain sickness ) is often a matter of concern in the mountains. As you ascend higher the oxygen level and the atmospheric pressure gets thinner. This makes breathing more difficult.
Since you will be reaching above 5000 meter (16405 feet) multiple times during the trek, one of the major difficulties is your ability to adjust to high altitude. And needless to say, everyone is at risk of altitude sickness irrespective of age, gender and fitness level. Hence it is tough to say if one is completely safe.
So for this matter, it is very important to know about the altitude sickness. Learn about the early signs and symptoms so that you can take the necessary precautions to avoid further complication.
If at any time you feel that you have the symptoms of AMS, it is best to stop proceeding further and take the necessary rest. Resting and acclimatization is a must while trekking at higher altitude.
And if resting doesn’t improve your condition, descending is the only option. It is never a good idea to push your body too hard. Doing so can even lead to the fatal condition.
Some of the things you can do to avoid the risk of altitude sickness are by walking slow, drinking plenty of water, saying no to alcohol. And most importantly acclimatizing.
Physical Stamina and Training
You will be trekking to the elevation above 5000 meter, few times during this trek, it can be challenging and difficult, so proper training before the trek is very important. If you are physically prepared and have the necessary endurance for the trek then you will feel less difficulty in the trails.
Brisk walking, Jogging, Skipping and climbing stairs are some of the basic exercises you can do to prepare for the trek.
Besides, working on your strength is very important. There is a lot of trekking distance that you will have to cover in high altitude carrying your backpacks. Also, you have to walk on uneven terrain. It can be taxing for your legs.
For this, strengthening your legs will be beneficial. You can do some squats to strengthen them.
Another aspect that will help you trek comfortably is flexibility. For this, you can do some stretching exercises- stretch your hamstrings, quadriceps, hip flexors, lower back muscles, and shoulders regularly.
Thus these exercises will help you to be in good shape prior to the trek.
Tips to Reduce Everest Gokyo Ri Trek Difficulty
- If you are a novice trekker then choose the peak seasons. During these seasons you will get to walk in moderate weather with lesser difficulties.
- If you are new to trekking and opting for this Everest Gokyo Ri Trek, then hire a licensed guide for your safety. They help you overcome the trek difficulties in many ways.
- It is a good idea to spend more time on the trails and not to escape the acclimatization days. This adds a lesser burden on your legs and prevents you from altitude sickness.
- Despite some minor physical training, you must possess an optimistic thought and mental preparedness to overcome any hurdles that may come along during the trek.
- Pack wisely keeping in mind the weather and temperature of the season you are planning to trek. Proper packing helps you to adjust to the changing altitude and the climates.
Frequently Asked Question (FAQS)
Question. 1: Are accommodations available in this trek?
Yes, you will have no problem for accommodation on the route, although basic. You will be staying in tea houses on all nights of the trek. But if you wish to rest on a single room that may not be possible. You may have to share the rooms in the tea house with the fellow trekkers.
Question. 2: Will there be snow on this trek?
You will most likely start encountering snow from Day 6, en route Machhermo. Besides, you will be walking on glaciers on a few days between Days 8-13. But in peak season like Autumn and Spring snowing is less likely.
Question. 3: Is the trek doable for a first timer?
Everest Gokyo Ri is not a beginner’s trek but you can always attempt it. It could be a difficult attempt for the beginner trekker. You may have to invest more effort and extra hours on the high altitudes during this trek.
Question. 4: Will I face a difficult time finding food on the trails?
The Tea houses you find on the trials provide a variety of meals. You will find them easily in almost every tea houses. You can get to enjoy Dal-Bhat, Momo, Chowmein, Soup, Pizza, noodles etc.
But during the peak season, you may have to wait in a queue to get the food.
Question. 5: What if it rains?
You will continue to trek if it rains. Your poncho should protect you. Carrying a backpack cover for protection from rain is important.
Your group leader or guide will take a call for the group should you stay back in case the weather turns worse. In this case, you will use the buffer days.
Question. 6: What are the washroom/toilet facilities like on the trek?
You will have access to concrete toilets (usually squat) since you will be staying in tea houses on all days of the trek.
Question. 7: Will there be water sources on the way? Or do we need to buy water all the time?
You will get drinking water at the tea houses where you will be staying. Yet for your day’s trek, 1 to 1.5 ltr of water should be enough; water bottled can filled as you go.
Please note that there can be times where you will need to buy drinking water. For instance, once you reach Gorakshep till the time you descend. And this water bottle will cost you Nepali rupees 350 to 500 for a liter.
Question. 8: Is there a mobile network on this trek? Are there any electricity charging points on this trek?
Get a local sim card NCELL or NTC before you start your trek. You will have mobile connectivity till Dole. However, you will also have internet connectivity in tea houses at all locations except Lobuche.
With an extra cost, the tea houses will allow you to use facilities like the electric charging points, wifi etc.
The Everest Gokyo Ri Trek is an amazing trek that offers you with immense beauty and the experience of a lifetime.
Everest Gokyo Ri trek difficulty should not bother you if you go prepared. It is an adventurous trek, you go through some of the highest passes in the world. Besides the passes, you will get a visual treat witnessing the beauty of the cobalt blue lakes.
All in all, it is a great trekking trail that will do complete justice to trekking in the Everest region. Hence with proper training prior to the trek and with strong willpower, you can complete the trek a lot easier.
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