Visit to the Everest Base Camp after Earthquake? Yes Please!
Everest Base Camp trek is safe past the devastating earthquake in the tiny Himalayan nation of Nepal on April 24 and May 12. Trekkers are much concerned about the conditions of the trail and the safety of the trekkers traversing along the popular and classic Everest Base Camp trail. You should basically know that the trail did suffer some damages after the earthquake, however, currently the trail is in good shape and most teahouses are in operation already. This information on the trekking trail to the Everest Base Camp is based on the firsthand look at the region and feedback from the Everest base camp trekking guides and trekkers after the second earthquake.
How safe is the trek to Everest Base Camp?
Everest Base camp trek is perfectly safe now. You can of course trust the authorities of United States, China, United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand several other nations who have already revised their Travel Advisory and marked Nepal as safe destination for visit, the travel restriction imposed by these authorities after the earthquake.
The trails to Everest Base Camp and Everest region had some damages by minor landslides in smaller sections of the route but the resilient locals have been quick to engineer alternative routes. The trails used by the trekkers, to experience the adventure, are also used by the locals for transporting necessary goods and conduct trade with the other regions of Nepal. This means that those paths have to be open not only for porters but also for yaks and mules carrying supplies. Thankfully, the entire region including the Everest Base Camp is passable without much difficulty as locals have been working to make things better every passing day. People, along with the other supporting agencies are continuously working for the purpose of getting back on their field and rebuilding the region.
The following section has the brief and much needed information on the major trekking stops along the trekking route of the Everest region.
Lukla: It suffered minimal damage and the airport is fully functional. You can have working internet facility.
Phakding: Some teahouses at Phakding suffered damage but plenty of safe accommodations are in operation and internet is fine with minor disturbances.
Namche: Some teahouses suffered damage here but plenty of safe lodges/teahouses are in operation and internet is basically working.
Deboche, Dingboche Gorak Shep, Gokyo, Thaknak and Chukhung: These villages had virtually no damage from the earthquake.
Monjo, Pangboche, Periche, Thame and Khumjung: These settlements had several teahouses damaged but several places are left to stay. Rebuilding and making the trail safer were carried on and the settlements and the paths are on good condition at present.
Everest Region still has the infrastructure for hydro electricity and solar power intact providing electricity to the region.
Accommodation and Transportation
More than 90% of the lodges in the Khumbu region have already been marked ‘safe’ and are back in business. Almost all the hotels in Kathmandu are also marked safe for welcoming the guests. The locals are in fact eagerly waiting for the trekking trails to be buzzing with the tourists and trekkers.
Transportation, another major aspect of any trekking expedition, is also intact. The Tribhuwan International Airport (TIA) in Kathmandu and Tenzing-Hillary Airport in Lukla have started their operation long time back. The commercial airlines are very well operating to and from Lukla to Kathmandu. Of course, the timing of flights to and from Lukla depends upon the weather condition on respective days.
It’s Payback Time!
All these years since the first summit of the Everest by the legendary mountaineer duo, Tenzing Norgay and Sir Edmund Hillary in 1953, Everest region and Everest Base Camp has served a lot of tourists like you. You, now, have the chance to pay the Everest back for the hospitality, adventurous feel and all those memorable experiences. You can be of great support to the Everest region in the coming seasons more than any other seasons in the past.
But…..How to help?
VISIT and TREK! This is the basic and the most important contribution you can make for the rebuilding of the economy of the Everest region for some of the coming trekking seasons. By trekking to the Everest Base Camp, you are helping the community which is largely dependent on the tourism in the region. The income from tourism is one of the chief sources of fund to the people associated with it. Not only the expenditure by tourists and trekkers on food and accommodation, the income by the guides is an additional and much needed income source.
With some minor adjustments with regards to some of the most damaged villages, the Everest Base Camp trek is basically a doable one. You shall have an excellent trekking experience from the trek.
Let’s help the ever resilient people as they are trying to be back to normal living standard. Trek to Everest Base camp and other surrounding areas are still equally enchanting, the colossal mountains still guard the region like always and people still host the visitors with their rich cultural legacy and ever warm hospitality. Pack your bags and let’s go for Everest Base Camp!