Island Peak Climb with Everest Base Camp Trek is intended for those who are fit enough and have the desire to experience both the trekking and climbing experience at the same time.
This is a remarkable journey into the core of the Khumbu Valley and Everest Base Camp (5357m). Island Peak (6,189m) is a major climbing/expedition peak that lies in the Everest Region. It has a greatly glaciated West Face that rises from the Lhotse Glacier. Along with the ascent of Island peak up-close views of Mt. Everest and other high mountains from Everest Base Camp and Kala Patthar are one of the many highlights of this journey. The Everest Base Camp is one of the most popular tourist destinations on the planet. The views from the Everest Base Camp four of the world’s tallest peaks – Mt. Everest, Mt. Lhotse, Mt. Makalu and Cho Oyu is unforgettable. Not only this, The Everest Base Camp offers 360 degree panoramic and attractive views of the Himalayan range, which definitely isn’t a bad thing. Attracting enthusiasts from all over the world, the base camp is a cultural hub. It’s a spiritual and a natural haven. Countless and colorful Buddhist flags decorate the campsite with stunning views of the Himalaya mountain range, the atmosphere is both magnificent and heavenly. The journey starts and finishes from the Lukla Airport. The Lukla Airport is one of the major attraction because the airport stands high in the mountains and making the adventurous flight from Kathmandu.
Day 01: Arrival in Kathmandu (1,350m/4,428ft)
After landing at the Tribhuwan International Airport, you will be picked up by our representative who will drop you off at the hotel. Overnight in Kathmandu.
Day 02: Kathmandu: sightseeing and trek preparation
After the breakfast, you will be taken on a guided tour to the most spiritual and popular attractions in Kathmandu. Some of these attractions are even included in the list of World Heritage Sites. Witness the brilliant Bhaktapur Durbar Square, the holy Hindu temple of Pashupatinath, the renowned ‘Monkey Temple’ (Swayambhunath), and one of the largest stupas in the world-Bouddhanath. Overnight in Kathmandu.
Day 03: Fly to Lukla, trek to Phakding (2,651m/8,700ft): 40 minutes flight; 8km, 3 – 4 hours trek
Our journey starts with a scenic flight to Lukla. There, we will meet up with rest of the team and begin our trek. We descend towards the Cheplung village. At Cheplung we get to see beautiful views of Mt. Khumbila. Mount Khumbila (5761m) also known as “God of Khumbu” sacred mountain which has never been climbed. Our journey then continues towards Phakding. Overnight in Phakding.
Day 04: Trek from Phakding to Namche Bazaar (3,438m/11,280 ft): 11km, 5 – 6 hours
This is a big day as we’ll be covering a height of over 800 meters and that too mostly on the last part of the trail. Also, we will be crossing through loads of long suspension bridges over the Dudhkoshi river. The first part of trail is easy, we cross the Dudkoshi and walk along the path west of the river. We pass through pine forests and small villages along the way. We continue up north the Benkar valley, we cross the Dudhkoshi again and continue forwards passing through the Chumoa and Monjo villages. We will then reach the Everest National Park entrance gate at Jorsalle, where all the climbing passes are checked and verified. Here, you will start seeing more sights of the snow-clad mountains ahead. The last parts of the trek get tougher. We must climb a steep incline to reach the Hillary bridge. The Hillary bridge is the last one on today’s journey, it is also the longest and the highest. We then continue hiking up a steep path leading up to Namche Bazaar. Namche Bazaar is a famous town in the region. It is the starting point for all expeditions in the Everest region. It is a historic town with markets selling everything from Tibetan artefacts to trekking and climbing equipment. There you will get good views of the mighty snow-clad peaks in the region. It is rich in history and culture, so there’s a lot more to see. Overnight in Namche Bazaar.
Day 05: Acclimatization Day – Namche Bazaar: (3,440m/11,284ft)
This day is primarily meant for an acclimatization trek to a higher altitude and then back to Namche to sleep one more night at the current altitude. In a span of around 48 hours you will have had climbed up to 11,290 ft / 3,440 m at Namche from 4,600 ft / 1,400 m at Kathmandu, therefore it is very necessary for you properly acclimatize. We will be hiking up to Khumjung village. It is a small but vibrant Sherpa village. There we will be visiting the Hillary School and the Khumjung Gompa that has a scalp on display, which the monastery claims that it belongs to the mythical Yeti. This is a good opportunity to learn more about the Sherpa culture, taste local cuisines, and observe the never-tiring views of the Himalayas. After our day of exploration, we make our way back to Namche Bazaar. Overnight in Namche Bazaar.
Day 06: Trek from Namche Bazaar to Tengboche (3,870m/12,694ft): 10km, 5- 6 hours
With a good breakfast checked off the list, we will prepare to trek up to the renowned Tengoche monastery at Tengboche village. It is the largest monastery in the region and one of the most significant ones as well. The monastery is perched in a beautiful spot on a high ridge with Mount AmaDablam in the background. It is surrounded by pines, azaleas and colorful mountain rhododendrons, and the views are just fantastic; you can get good views of Mt. Everest, Nuptse, Lhotse, AmaDablam and Thamserku!
The early parts of the hike up to Tengboche is pleasant, with loads of opportunities to get good pictures of the beautiful Himalayan landscape. You will pass through small villages and Buddhist stupas along the way and may also come across an old man and a woman who claim to maintain the trail, they have a big sign in four languages asking for donations for maintenance. Midway along the trail splits. Three different signs point towards the Khumjung village, other Gokyo, and Tengboche respectively. As we approach the last part of the trail, things turn steep! The last few kilometers until we reach Tengboche has the most height gain. Overnight in Tengboche.
Day 07: Tengboche to Pheriche (4,200m/13,776ft): 4-5 hours
From Tengboche, we descend through a forest before crossing a river and then trek uphill. The landscape soon becomes more arid as we climb further.En route we pass throughPangboche, a traditional Sherpa village, and thenPheriche. Pheriche is a gorgeous village located on a riverside. Here, we will also see a small helipad that is used for helicopter rescues during emergencies. Here, we get learn a few tips from a mountain specialist in a medical clinic at Pheriche. There is also a helipad for rescue operations. Overnight in Pheriche.
Day 08: Pheriche to Lobuche (4,930m/16,170ft): 5-6 hours
After a hearty breakfast, we head towards Dughla. On this day, along with the views of the great mountains like Nuptse, we will pay respect to those that fallen climbing Everest at the Everest memorial sight at the top of a ridge above Duglha. The journey to Lobuche begins with a demanding two-hour ascent up the steep terminal moraine of the Khumbu Glacier. We ascend a ridge called ChupkiLhara following a trail surrounded by boulders on each side to finally reach a memorial sight for the fallen climbers. The place is a grim reminder of the dangers of Everest. As we move further, we make it to the Khumbu Glacier moraine where we are blessed with tremendous views of Khumbutse, Lingtren, Pumori and MahalangurHimal. We then walk towards Lobuche village. Overnight in Lobuche.
Day 09: Trek from Lobuche to GorakShep (5170 m/16,961ft), visit Everest Base Camp (5364 m/17,594 ft): 13km, 6-7 hours
The trail to GorakShep is rocky and makes it difficult to walk quickly. We move along the Khumbu glacier. The hike isn’t so difficult, it’s steady with minor ups and downs, but the elevation can make things very much tougher. On GorakShep you feel like you’re walking on a beach because GorakShep is a frozen lakebed covered with sand.
Once GorakShep is conquered, we head for Everest Base Camp. The trail to EBC is also very rocky and degrades into larger rocks as closer we get to the EBC. The rocky terrain, the ascents and descents on a glacial path, and the elevation, make this trail challenging. But, the views from there and the feeling of being there away from the “world” is incredible. It isn’t more about the views but it’s more about the personal sense of achievement you get and to realize that you’ve made it!
You can see the mighty Khumbu Ice fall, the upper part of the Khumbu glacier, stunning views of Nuptse, Khumbuste and Pumori, and many other Himalayan giants from EBC. We will head back to spend the night in GorakShep. Overnight in GorakShep.
Day 10: Trek from GorakShep to Kala Patthar (5,545m/18,192ft) and back to Lobuche (4940m/16,207ft): 7-8 hours
The trek starts early in the morning. We walk up a slope admiring great views of Lingtren, Khumbutse, and Changtse mountains. Kala Patthar is a famous landmark in the region, it literally means black rock. Some would say, Kala Patthar is the highlight of the whole trip. Since the mountains surrounding EBC are so massive, you can’t actually see Mount Everest. It is on top of Kala Patthar, where one can see the best view of Mount Everest. Hikers walk early in the morning to Kala Patthar to witness the sunrise from Kala Pattar. After spending some time at Kala Pathhar, we head back to Lobuche. Overnight in Lobuche.
Day 11: Lobuche to Kongma La (5,535m/18,159ft) to Chhukung (4,730m/15,518ft): 6-7 hours
After a good breakfast, we trek via Khumbu Glacier to Kongma La Base Camp (5,000m/16,404ft). The ascent to Kongma La pass is challenging and the most demanding part of today’s journey. After the pass is conquered, we slowly move down to ImjaKhola valley, and further to Chhukung, a small summer settlement. There we check our gearfor the climb. Overnight in Chhukung.
Note: We can also follow another route via Dingboche to Chhukung instead of climbing the Kongma La pass.
Day 12: Chhukung to Island Peak base camp (5,200m/17,060ft): 3-4 hours
Today we inch even closer to the ultimate climb. The trail to Island Peak Base Camp is pretty steep. We first climb south, then move east towards the main line of the valley and then trek on a twisting path below the southern flank of the moraine from the Lhotse Glacier. From here, we walk through alovely trail along a streamside. We follow a crisscross route through the Imja and Lhotse glacier moraines that takes us to a wide valley on the SW side of Island Peak. Overnight at Island Peak Base Camp.
Day 13: Pre-climb training on Island Peak Base Camp
Our pre-climb training begins today. The training will be delivered through our guides. They will train you on proper use of climbing gears like the ice axe, climbing boots and crampons, harness, ascender, etc., using ropes to move up and down, and peak climbing techniques. The training isn’t compulsory, but we strongly recommend it as some training experience will give you the much-needed confidence and climbing skills to scale the summit successfully and enjoy the entire experience. We have an option to either spend the the day hiking to a higher camp and back or resting for the ultimate climb. Overnight at the base camp.
Day 14: Island Peak summit (6,189m/20,305ft),return base camp: 10-12 hours
We start the day very early, we wake up at 12 to 1 am, have our breakfastsand start the climb. We need to start very early because it is of the utmost importance to reach the summit before noon as there will be the strong winds in the highlands during the afternoon which can be a hurdle for our successful summit.
The trail leads on for hundreds of meters from the base camp until it strikes off a steep hillside. The path from here is sandy, then turns to grass to becoming boulder strewn. Climbing further, the slope narrows, and the trail enters a steep rock channel. We ascent the rock gully. We move through several short rock steps to climb before emerging on the right side of the gully. We then follow a ridgeline leading to an exciting and exposed traverse onto the snout of the summit glacier. Ropes will be fixed by our guides wherenecessary.We climb a steep snow ridge towards the summit ridge. Fixed rope and man rope will be used through the ascent. We will use fixed rope after climbing on rock. The length of the rope depends on the time of the season and the crevasses. We will also use ladders to cross crevasses where necessary. After all the challenges we make it to summit where we enjoy the magnificent views. After the triumph we move down to Island Peak Base Camp where celebrations wait.
Day 15: Island Peak Base Camp to Pangboche (3,985m/13,074ft) 5-6 hours
Now, it’s all downhill from here, an enjoyable one though. We trace our steps through the wide valley of Khumbu Khola, passing through beautiful Sherpa villages of Orsho and Shomare. We have the option to take an alternate trail to visit the Gompa in Upper Pangboche, considered to be the oldest in the Khumbu region or take the regular route to reach Pangboche. Enjoy brilliant views ofAmaDablam, Thamserku, Kangtaiga, the Kongde range and the ImjaTse river from Pangboche. Overnight in Pengboche.
Day 16: Pangboche to Namche Bazaar (3,440m/11,286ft): 4-5 hours
Again, we retrace our steps fromPangbochetowards Tengboche. We then pass through rhododendron and juniper foreststo reach a bridge over the DudhKoshi River. On crossing the bridge, the trail follows the DudhKoshi gorge descending quickly through pine forests to reach Sansa. We might spot mountain goats, snow leopards if lucky, and colorful pheasantswhile passing through the forest. Finally after a chorten, we reach Namche Bazaar. Overnight in Namche Bazaar.
Day 17: Trek from Namche Bazaar to Lukla (2,860m/9,186ft): 19km, 6 – 7 hours
It’s again all downhill from here. Enjoy the views and reflect upon what you just achieved in these last two weeks. It is a wonderful time to fully look back at the entire journey. After passing some rocky path, it is just a quick descent, crossing several suspensions bridges on the way until we reach our destination. We will also be passing by many monasteries, too. And finally, we make it back to Lukla. This will be the last day in the mountains! Time to rest, reflect and relax! Overnight in Lukla.
Day 18: Fly to Kathmandu
We will catch an early morning flight to Kathmandu, where we can do some last-minute souvenir shopping and some celebration! You can also check out some other places in Kathmandu, we will be assisting you with that as well. A farewell dinner is arranged to celebrate your success. Overnight in Kathmandu.
Day 19: Final departure
This is it, your last day in Nepal. It’s time to say goodbye, but we hope we’ll meet again! Our representative will escort you to the airport three hours before the scheduled flight.