One of the most important parts of preparing for a trek is packing your bags right. What you carry for your journey makes a huge impact on how your trip will go through. Especially when it comes to trekking to Everest Base Camp, you need to carry whatever is required in an arduous journey. The basic packing list for the trek consists of items ranging from clothing to essentials such as torch lights.
While the packing lists for most of the treks seem the same, some treks have a different set of requirements. Varying with the climate and the difficulty of the trek, there will be a few more additional items in some treks. As such, there are a few basic and some optional items that the trekkers should pack on the Everest Base Camp trek. Besides the items in the list, you can add a few more that you require. But always keep in mind the weight you will create with the extra items.
The following list of items is suggested as basic equipment that is necessary for a typical multi-day trek:
Everest Base Camp Trek is a fairly long journey in the Himalayas. So, it is obvious for trekkers to have large luggage. Likewise, it is also common to have luggage and an additional backpack. While trekkers can pack most of their trekking essentials in the luggage, they can include a few items they frequently use in the backpack. The luggage usually consists of almost all clothing and equipment. Things that will be required on the trek will go inside your backpacks such as water, snacks, medicines, and entertainment items. If you have a porter with you, you can hand the bigger luggage to the porter. For those who do not hire porters, trekkers will have to carry their trekking luggage through the entire trek. You must choose your bags carefully as they must be durable, lockable, and waterproof.
Clothing is the most important aspect of your preparation for the Everest Base Camp Trek. Since most of the location of the Everest Base Camp trek lies around cold regions, you will require several types of clothing to keep you warm. A few clothing items are also included to keep you safe during any unpredictable weather conditions. To protect yourself from these conditions, you should take proper clothing. Following are few of the required clothing for the EBC Trek:
- Light thermal inner wears: innerwear to keep you warm and maintain warm body temperature.
- Fleece jacket or pullover: it is wise to build layers of clothing that keep you warmer than just a thick jacket.
- Wind stopper jacket: high-altitude passes can be windy thus, wind stoppers can help you fight the strong winds.
- Waterproof/snowproof jackets and trousers: just in case it rains or snows during the trek, a pair of waterproof/snowproof jacket and trouser can help you walk with relative ease.
- Lightweight thermal gloves: the upper regions are very cold so you will have to protect your fingers as well. Lightweight thermal gloves can keep your hands warm as well as keep your mobility intact.
- Set of Undergarments: you may not get to wash your undergarments during the trek. A sufficient amount of pairs can help you stay clean for the duration of the trek.
- Sun hat or scarf: while traveling across high altitudes, you can easily get a sunburn. Hats or scarves protect you from the sun, dust, and wind.
- Warm fleece hat or light balaclava: it is important to keep your head warm during the EBC Trek. When the temperature drops, you might feel cold in your head.
- Thin, lightweight inner socks: thin, lightweight inner socks keep you comfortable. Sweat absorbing and breathable socks keep your feet dry and blister-free.
These are the basic clothing requirement for the Everest Base Camp Trek. But, the trek might require you to carry more warm clothes. It is wise to dress according to the temperature you reach. The EBC Trek begins from Lukla which is situated at 2,840 meters. The cold begins from here and increases as you go higher in altitude. A wise way to deal with the cold is to dress in layers. It is rather helpful to do so than to wear a thick jacket on top of a trekking shirt. During day time, you may not need to wear extra clothes. You can remove your top layers or add them according to your will.
The additional set of clothes necessary for the cold are:
- Waterproof shell mittens/gloves(insulated liners recommended)
- Insulated jacket with attached hood
- Heavyweight pants (for high elevations)
- Heavy down jacket
- Winter hat
In addition to clothing, various gears are essential for the trek. These gears give you support and make your trekking easier. These treks are essential to make sure that you can traverse across the rugged Himalayan trails with ease. The recommended gears are:
- Trekking boots: Comfortable trekking boots are a must for the EBC Trek. The quality of your boots supports your ankles in the uneven and rocky trails. You will be walking huge distances for the trek thus, you should choose your boots wisely.
- Camp sandals: Camp sandals can come in handy when you reach your destination for the day. It helps your feet get rest from the trekking boots and are easy to wear and take off.
- Sunglasses with UV protection: High altitude regions have thin air which causes you to easily get exposed to the high-intensity UV rays. These rays are harmful to your eyes and cause headaches, dizziness and snow blindness. Sunglasses help you prevent the UV rays.
- Water bottles: You may not get water easily in between stops. It is wise to carry your supply of water for the hike.
- Trekking poles: Trekking poles help you find the ground and maintain balance.
- Headlamp: Headlamps can come in handy when it gets dark. Since electricity isn't readily available, headlamps can be useful during the trek as well as for the nights
Personal Supplies and Toiletries
Personal supplies and toiletries are also essential for the Everest Base Camp Trek. Finding these supplies can be very hard when you are in rural areas. It is best to have the necessary supplies you need in your backpack.
- Medium-sized towel
- Toothbrush/ toothpaste
- Face and body moisturizer
- Nail clippers
- Hand sanitizer
- Face/body wipes
- Throat lozenges
- Lip balm
You may carry more supplies according to your needs, but it is not recommended that you carry unnecessary items creating extra load and eating up your space.
Medical supplies are very important to carry during the trek. If you are traveling with a tour operator, the guide they provide will probably have a first aid kit and additional medicines. But it is best to carry your medical supplies. Here are a few medical supplies that are recommended for trekking in Nepal.
- Bandage for sprains
- Iodine or water filter
- General painkiller
- Antiseptic cream for cuts
- Blister medication
- Antibacterial throat lozenges
- Antibiotic tablets
- Oral rehydration salts
- Diarrhea medication
- Diamox (for altitude sickness)
This is a list of the most essential medical supplies you will be needing for your trek. Besides the first aid kit, certain medicines can come in handy during emergencies. The Diamox, for example, helps in the reduction of the symptoms of altitude sickness. It is wise to check if you have any medical conditions or risks that may arise while being exposed to the harsh environment of the high altitudes. Make sure you verify with your doctor if you are healthy enough for the trek. Emergency services and rescue operations are quite expensive. If you have travel insurance, emergency service costs can be covered saving you a lot of money.
Besides everything mentioned above, there are a few items that can keep you entertained or even enhance your trekking experience. A few suggestions are:
- Diary/Journals and pens
- Music player
- Playing cards or any other board games
These items are only for the sake of entertainment or additional usage. Make sure you carry extra items keeping in mind the weight you will bear.
All of the items mentioned above can be found in the local store here in Nepal. You can find a range of brands for these products which vary in quality and price. Local stores offer great prices. If you do not already own some of the items, you can easily buy or rent them around major cities where shops are available in abundance. Keep in mind that your trekking items are like investments for your safety and experience. Good quality equipment is reliable and goes a long way.
Trekkers can have a memorable time trekking in the Everest region if they follow the above-mentioned packing list. However, be cautious to pack efficiently and conquer the Everest Base Camp Trekking trail. Well-equipped with the required gears, you can easily overcome difficulties and have the adventure you seek.