Information/Life on the Trek
Whilst on the trek, the Nepali guides and porters will ensure that you are well looked after. Every trek has an English speaking guide, known as the sirdar, who is in overall charge. It is his responsibility to organise the trek en route and manage the guides and porters and deal with the local peoples. The sirdars are very experienced men, some being previous Everest mountaineers, and they are experts in trek organisation, as well as being able to discuss the local culture, religion, and landscape. In addition there will be other guides, sometimes referred to by the generic term Sherpa, who will be your walking companions on the trek and will assist the sirdar in organising the logistics of the trek. On camping treks there will be a full kitchen crew who are responsible for all aspects of catering. And finally there will be porters who are the transportation system of the Nepali mountains. They will carry the duffle bags and other equipment as necessary.
1. Fully equipped Camping treks - accommodation is provided in spacious 2 person tents. We use this method for our climbing trips and some treks where lodges are less frequent.
2. Lodge treks - accommodation is provided in the local Nepali lodges, sometimes known as tea-houses. It is usually necessary to share a double room. We use this method for our treks in the Annapurna and Everest regions.
All equipment and food, and your own personal backpacks are carried by the porters or pack animals. It is only necessary to carry a camera or small daypack ! On camping treks all necessary camp equipment is provided - this includes dining tent, dining table & chairs, toilet tent, foam mattresses, and all cooking equipment.
It is not necessary to take any additional food on the trek. On camping treks, all food is prepared by the trek cook - an expert in preparing delicious camp food. And most importantly, special care is taken to provide well-boiled, purified drinking water. On lodge treks, food is provided in the lodge and this ranges from delicious local specialities to common western dishes. If necessary, bottled water can be purchased from the lodges for a small fee, although many trekkers prefer to use fresh water with the added precaution of a purifying agent.
A typical trekking day
A typical day revolves around the Nepal sunrise and sunset, rather than any Western time schedule. The day starts with an early wake-up call. You then pack up your gear and enjoy a rousing breakfast before starting your morning's walk. The sirdar will already be organised and have assigned loads to porters and/or animals, and your group will then set off on the trail at a leisurely pace, enjoying the view and stopping to take photographs. After 2-3 hours walk you stop for lunch. This lasts for about 90 minutes which gives you time to relax, or explore the local village.
The afternoon's walk is usually shorter and we arrive at the campsite or tea-house in plenty of time to relax and savour the surroundings. Later in the evening dinner is served, giving you an opportunity to sample the delicious food, talk over the day's events, and look forward to another special day on the trails of Nepal.
Health and Safety on the trek
1. We advise that you carry your personal first aid kit which includes specific items of preference.
2. We will, in an emergency, arrange for helicopter evacuation. (Note that you are required to hold insurance for this unlikely eventuality).
3. All meals on our camping trips are prepared to strict hygiene standards specifically for our groups, under the supervision of the trekking staff.
4. We use tea-houses that we know have strict hygiene standards and provide a broad menu.
Anyone can be affected by Altitude Sickness. However, our itineraries are specifically designed to minimise the risks associated with trekking to high altitudes by building in acclimatisation and rest days. In the event of any symptoms we will ensure that the individual descends to a lower altitude to gain a quick recovery.
Most villages on the popular trekking trails have a telephone or email facility and in some areas it is possible to receive a mobile signal from the growing cellular network in Nepal.
And finally ... it must be stressed that whilst trekking in the Nepal Himalaya is challenging and rewarding, you must be prepared for the occasional inconvenience or discomfort. The correct mental attitude to trekking is as important as being physically prepared.