Everest Base Camp: Spring VS Fall?
When the window opens climb through
Trekking to Everest Base Camp is all about timing.
The Himalayas are the world’s highest mountains and have a full range of weather conditions. Winter is cold and snowy; summer’s monsoon dumps copious rains throughout much of Asia. The trekking window opens in spring and fall when warm/dry conditions provide your chance to follow in the footsteps of mountain climbing legends by trekking to Everest Base Camp.
Peak season to trek to Everest Base Camp is October/November when you will see many fellow Himalayan trekkers and locals on the trail. Spring is also good and May is prime time for those hardy souls trying to bag Mt. Everest. Everest Base Camp at 17,598 feet is 12,000 feet lower than the summit and is usually not snowbound in spring/fall providing more opportunities to comfortably trek there in spring and fall.
Tusker offers the Everest Base Camp trek in both spring and fall with pros and cons to both. Going to Everest Base Camp is a once in a lifetime opportunity, so do what’s right for you.
Hiking almost anywhere in the world in spring is special. Plants, animals and birds dormant all winter spring back to life feeding and breeding in the warming temps. In Nepal spring is especially rejuvenating with colorful trailside rhododendrons blooming. Tusker’s treks have been blessed with daytime temps in the 70s with mostly dry conditions which lead to solid trail conditions. Hillsides are verdant below tree line and the trails are not overcrowded. Be aware that 40,000 people annually do the trek to Everest Base Camp, so if solitude is your thing spring might be best for you.
The mostly clear skies mean fewer chances of flight cancellations getting into Lukla – the departure point for the trek.
Be aware that afternoon clouds can lead to showers. Also spring haze is not uncommon and can detract from visibility especially below 10,000 feet.
Perhaps the prime reasons fall is the busy season in the Khumbu Valley are the views. After the summer monsoons, the skies are crisp and blue offering many Photoshop moments of the sparkling white-capped Everest massif. Trail dust is at a minimum and fall migrating birds will likely be flitting across the trail on their way back to Africa at the lower elevations. Rivers will be running full with the monsoon’s largesse and this sound of mountain music helps you dance across the hanging bridges and up the Khumbu Valley.
Fall harvest festivals enliven several of the small towns on route to Everest Base Camp – and these are great opportunities for you to mingle with the Buddhist monks and Sherpa people. In Tengboche, the Mani Rimdu Festival is a chance for the largest and usually somber Buddhist monastery to celebrate. At 12,600 feet it also is one of the best places to see the Everest massif thanks to the azure skies.
You have a choice, make it
Many adventure destinations have one season when everyone and the trails get overrun with people. The Everest Base Camp trek has two solid options – spring or fall – so thanks to Tusker’s new fall itinerary you have the choice. A spring trip is a great way to end winter and kick off your summer with an epic trip. A fall Everest Base Camp adventure is a way to prolong your summer before settling in for winter back home.
Spring or fall? It’s your call. You know your schedule, but either way be ready for a world class adventure.