Everest Gokyo Trek would definitely be a life time experience for a trekker. This is one of the most challenging yet the most thrilling trek experience in the Everest region of Nepal. Yearly thousands of adventure aspirant come here to explore the natural land and breath-taking Gokyo valley. From Gokyo valley one can view the scenic view of fascinating mountains from north to south of Everest region including the mighty Everest as well.
Trekking to Gokyo valley deluges you with the great opportunity to witness the Ngozumpa glacier which is the biggest in Nepal’s Himalaya. The most fascinating benefit of Everest Gokyo Trek is extreme view of huge ice ridge located between Cho You and Gyachung in Khumbu region. It is known for the existence of high altitude lakes as well. These mountains, ridges and glaciers are supernatural – as are your experiences with the Sherpa individuals, the well-known mountain inhabitants of this Himalayan wonderland. The glow and cordiality stretched out by the neighbourhood tenants of this district, the Sherpas, will add a further dimension to your experience of trekking in Nepal.
After a forty minute flight from Kathmandu landing at Lukla’s tiny airport, the adventure really starts. The trek trail follows Phakding, Namche bazaar, Dole all the way to Machhermo. Along the way you can encounter many farm villages along with striking views of the high snow-capped peaks of the world. The trekking trails eventually leads you to the famous point of Gokyo Ri from where you can have a awe-inspiring view of hundreds of pleasing scenery.
Gokyo Ri, otherwise known as Gokyo Peak (5,357 m, 17,575 ft above ocean level), is a top in the Khumbu region of the Nepal Himalayas. It is situated on the west side of the Ngozumpa glacier, which is the biggest glacier in Nepal and rumoured to be the biggest in the entire Himalayas. At the base of Gokyo Ri, is a small hamlet of few stone houses and one of the highest settlements on the planet. The vintage point of Gokyo Ri will reward you with staggering views of four of the eight highest mountains on earth; Cho Oyu (8153-m), Lhotse (8501-m), Makalu (8463-m) and the Everest (8848-m). The Gokyo trek ends at Gokyo Ri, and trekkers commonly turn around at this point and follow their progressions back to the trailhead.
The Gokyo valley trek is considered as a typical trek that is suitable for everyone. However, the local people of Gokyo Valley call it “The Valley of Death” and rightly so – a couple of trekkers have endeavoured to climb Gokyo Ri speedy, ignored the precepts of AMS and paid the expense with their lives. Our schedule gives two evenings in Namche Bazaar for acclimatization, with the goal that you won’t be endeavouring to do this trek brisk! This minimizes your shots of getting AMS and helps you make it securely to the highest point of Gokyo.
So, if you are fairly fit and have a sense of adventure, you will definitely enjoy the Gokyo valley trek.
It takes about 30 minutes. Trek from Lukla to Phakding (2640 m.) which takes approximately three hours. You transfer to the domestic airport for your flight to Lukla. Lukla is a small town with an airport. There are few tea shops, lodges, hotels and general stores. You begin today trek from Lukla following a gentle climb up the mountainside on the left bank of the Dudh Koshi river. Nupla (5885m) can be seen in the distance on the opposite bank, is a peak atop the Kongde Ridge. You descend a mountainside path that merges into your route to Everest, with views to a valley to your right; and at its far end, Kusum Kang (6367m.) The Dudh Kosi approaches as you pass a Mani wall and arrive at Ghat teahouse. You continue along a small path with many climbs and descents following the left bank of Dudh Koshi to Phakding.
This day you trek and cross the river on high suspension bridges. Beyond Monjo (2800m.) is the entrance to the Sagarmatha National Park which was set-up in order to protect and preserve this fragile mountain environment. You then ascend quite steeply to Namche and along the way, if the weather is clear, catch a first glimpse of Mt Everest in the distance. You can also enjoy the view of Mt. Kusum Kangaru, Thamserku, Konde-Ri and Tawache peak. You can also visit some of the village monasteries on the way of trekking to Namche Bazaar (3440 m.). Namche is the main trading village in the Khumbu region and holds a busy Saturday market. There is set a meeting place for the Hindu traders from the lowlands and the Tibetan yak caravans that have reached there by crossing the glaciated Nangpa La.
Namche is tucked away between two ridges amidst the giant peaks of the Khumbu and has an abundance of lodges, tea shops and souvenir shops as well as a magnificent outlook. It is an ideal place to spend a rest day for acclimatization at the high altitude before heading off towards Tyangboche. For the acclimatization you walk up to Khunde Hospital which was set-up by Sir Edmund Hillary, or an hour walk up to the Tyangboche (3800m.) where Everest View Hotel is situated above Namche for the outstanding view of Everest, Nuptse, Lhotse, Ama Dablam, Thamserku and Kusum Kangaru. There are also good views from the National Park Centre and Museum just above the town.
From Namche the route heads up all the way to Kumjung, a picturesque village which also has its own gompa at the top end of town. Here you can have excellent views of Thamserku, Kantega and Ama Dablam. Soon after leaving Khumjung the trail climbs to a large chorten on top of a ridge. This ridge descends from Khumbila, a 5734m peak, said to be the abode of the patron God of the Khumbu region. The trail descends slightly towards the Sanasa and then trail ascends up to Mongla (4000m.). From here, you can see panoramic views of various mountains. You trek steeply descend passing through Phortse Tenga and from there, the trail climbs steeply to Dole, through rhododendron and birch forest festooned with hanging mosses and lichens. You can enjoy delicious meal at Phortse Tenga (3650m.)
From Dole you climb steadily along the side of the valley, where the small and thorny bushes give way to scrub juniper as the altitude increases. The trail passes many summer settlements, which are used when yaks are taken to these pastures to graze in the summer months. Ahead of you are excellent views of Cho Oyu, while back down the valley are the peaks of Kantega and Thamserku. This is a short day and you will arrive at Machhermo in time for lunch.
Today you head for the lakes at Gokyo. You follow a very scenic path to Pangka and then descend slightly, following one of the melt-water rivers which flow down the west side of the Ngozumpa Glacier. You climb a steep rocky inclined into the valley by the side of the glacier, passing the first of the holy lakes. You soon arrive at the second of the lakes, crossing the path which heads across the glacier to Cho La (5420m.), your route to Lobuche and Everest and later in the trek. The third lake is known as Dudh Pokhari and on its eastern shore is the settlement of Gokyo. Walking by the side of the lake, the scenery is magnificent with the summits of Cho Oyu and Gyachung Kang reflected in its emerald green waters.
Gokyo is a trade centre where the Sherpa people run lodges to provide the best services to the trekkers. Gokyo is situated by the side of Ngozumpa glacier, the biggest glacier of Nepal. This day you can make a side trip to Fifth Lake via Forth Lake.
Gokyo Ri looms above the village on the northern edge of the lake and you leave camp just after first light, following a steep path up the hillside. As you climb, the summits of Everest, Lhotse and Makalu slowly come into sight and the view from the summit of Gokyo Ri itself, is one of the finest to be had in the Everest region – some say it is even better than that from Kala Patthar. After lunch it is a short walk to the village of Machhermo.
The trail gently descends to Dole and then starts descending steeply to Photse Tenga (3650m.) passing through rhododendron forests. Then the path immediately ascends steeply to Mongla Danda (4000m.) and gently descends up to Kyanjoma (3500m.) following small ups and down to the destination.
The last day of your trek leads from Namche Bazaar via Monjo to Lukla. The trek is pleasant, except for few short uphill climbs and then down to the Bhote- Koshi River crossing it three times. The last uphill climb of 45 minutes will bring you to Lukla for your overnight stay.