How has 2014 been for you so far? I hope you have been preparing for the mountains, staying fit, walking and climbing in your local hills, not working too hard and relaxing with family, friends and colleagues.
We send this pre-trip newsletter to you in case you are already a member, are still thinking of joining, or wish to read about how we conduct our expeditions and walks. Thanks in advance for telling all of your friends and colleagues about what we are trying to do, and please recall we pay you or anyone you choose a 5% cash commission when you refer your friends. Let us join together with a friendly team of men and women of all ages from around the world for fun and adventure in the mountains.
- Recent News
- Trips 2014
- Organizing your Nepal and Tibet Visa
- Preparation - what to bring
- In Kathmandu (KTM) - arrival and departure
- Equipment and supplies for walking and climbing
- Sherpas and staff
- Information for climbers
- Donate medicines - education supplies, clothing, etc to Mt Everest Foundation for Sustainable Development
We offer a number of exciting trips this year and next, which you may review on our website at www.SummitClimb.com and www.SummitTrek.com . Read a short description for each trip below (including how things went last year) and click links to view slideshows.
Please ask as many questions as possible, so that we may understand one another's expectations. Informed team members achieve their goals with greater satisfaction, and are better and safer "team players". We love discussing our favourite subject, MOUNTAINS, so please ask us anything. back to top
NOW IS THE TIME TO JOIN OUR 2014 & 2015 TRIPS if you have not already.
All climbs now feature western leaders, excellent food, the best sherpas, a comfortable individual tent for each person in basecamp and some of the finest equipment on the mountain.
If you consider joining (we hope you will) please be sure to read this newsletter to the end and understand it fully. Thank you.
The three goals for our expeditions and walks are:
b. Fun, Friendship, and Teamwork;
c. Achieving our goals, reaching the summit, basecamp, or your service project, and returning safely. back to topWe have already had an exciting start to 2014 with our first ever Christmas and New Year Everest basecamp trek (www.ChristmasNewYearTrek.com) Also recently we had our first team of the year successfully summit Aconcagua and have another team heading up there as we speak. Please follow all of the news at www.SummitClimbNews.com
Perhaps there is no better time to visit the Himalaya. Not only do the September-December and March-July seasons provide some of the best weather of the year, but 2014 is a very good time to climb and explore in Nepal and Tibet, as tourism has dropped to its lowest level in many years, due to the global economic situation. The mountains are very quiet and it has been rather peaceful for the last 4 years everywhere in Nepal and Tibet. Additionally, we continue to emphasize offering a very high level of service at the most affordable prices.
PAYMENT NEWS: *Special Notice* Charge your expedition to your credit card. Earn valuable miles and bonus points and pay off the balance gradually over time. Please visit www.SummitClimbPayment.com.
Please read down to learn more about all of our 2014 climbs, walks, and trekking peaks. Spaces are still available, so we hope you'll join us during this peaceful and sunny time to visit the Himalaya.
We encourage you to take advantage and book one of the presently inexpensive flights which are still being offered. Please let us know if you need any help finding flights. back to top
EVEREST NEPAL SUMMIT EXPEDITION: www.EverestNepalClimb.com - Full Service Cost: $36,450, £23,950, €27,450; Basic Cost: $14,950, £9,850, €11,450. Full Service Cost: $36,450, £23,950, €27,450. Please join me, Dan Mazur, 10 time Everest leader for this classic climb to the roof of the world. 60 days in April-May and September-October at a very low price. FULL SERVICE INCLUDES ALL CLIMB AND TREK COSTS, FREE OXYGEN, INTERNAL FLIGHTS, SHERPAS, AND HOTELS. Please read down for training options.
EVEREST TIBET SUMMIT EXPEDITION: www.EverestClimb.com - Full Service Cost: $28,450, £18,750, €21,750; Basic Climb Cost: $9950, £6550, €7550. PRICE INCLUDES EVERYTHING FOR THE SUMMIT CLIMB AND THE WALK/DRIVE TO BASECAMP: FREE OXYGEN, FREE SHERPAS, AND FREE HOTELS. Please join me, Dan Mazur, 9 time Everest leader for this classic climb to the roof of the world. ***2013 expedition reached the summit and returned in all safety. View the latest news at: www.EverestTibetNews.com . Exotic and less crowded Tibet, with the best views of Everest in the world. Made famous in 1924 by Mallory and Irvine. By the way, we have an office in Lhasa and almost ALWAYS obtain our Tibet permits.
EVEREST TIBET SUMMIT EXPEDITION: www.EverestClimb.com - Basic Cost: $9,950, £6550, €7550. Full Service Cost: $28,450, £18,750, €21,750. Please join experienced leaders Dan Mazur and Scott Patch for an exciting and affordable 60 day expedition in April and May. FULL SERVICE INCLUDES ALL CLIMB AND TREK COSTS, FREE OXYGEN, SHERPAS, AND HOTELS. Please read down for training options.
CHO OYU: www.ExpeditionChoOyu.com .Led by Max Kausch / Dan Mazur who will teach you everything you need to know. 38 days in Tibet and Nepal during April-May and September-October. NEW LOW PRICE: Full Service Cost: $12,850, £8450, €9,850, Basic Climb Cost: $6650, £4350, €5050. 20% discount for Cho-Shish "double-header" expedition. FULL SERVICE INCLUDES ALL CLIMB AND TREK COSTS, FREE HOTEL AND FREE SHERPAS.
EVEREST NEPAL CAMP 3 TRAINING CLIMB: www.EverestTrainingClimb.com - Full Service Cost $8650, £5,650, €6650. Sixteen day option: $6350, £4150, €4850. Join 10 time Everest leader Dan Mazur, who will teach you everything you need to know, and get trained for Everest on the same classic route as our summit expedition. Checkout the awesome camp 3 on the Lhotse Face of Everest. 31 days, or 16 days school only, in April, May, September, or October, and an affordable way to learn all about climbing, see how you feel at 7000 metres / 23,000 feet, visit beautiful Nepal, and if you are feeling well, transition to Everest. Get Qualified for Everest. FULL SERVICE INCLUDES ALL CLIMB AND TREK COSTS, FREE HOTEL, INTERNAL FLIGHTS, AND SHERPAS.
EVEREST TIBET TRAINING CLIMB AND NORTH COL: www.EverestTibetTrainingClimb.com and www.North-Col.com - Full Service Cost: $8950, £5850, €6850.Explore the amazing camp 1 on the Tibetan shoulder of Everest. Please join friendly leader Dan Mazur and Scott Patch who is one of the best in the business, for an exciting and affordable 28 day expedition in April or May, and a great chance to learn all about climbing, see how you feel at altitude, visit exotic Tibet, and if you are feeling well, transition to Everest and Cho Oyu. Get qualified for Everest. FULL SERVICE INCLUDES ALL CLIMB AND TREK COSTS, FREE HOTEL AND SHERPAS.
SUMMER TRIPS IN 2014:
MOUNT MUSTAGATA WAS SELECTED BY NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC AS "BEST ADVENTURE DESTINATION 2012". Friendly leader Scott Patch: snow safety expert, professional ski - snowshoe instructor. who will teach you everything you need to know, has climbed Mustagata 9 times and speaks perfect English and flawless Chinese. At 7500 metres / 24,500 feet.Mustagata is the world's 'easiest' peak of its size because the average slope angle is only 18 degrees, equivalent to a "novice" ski piste or run. Many members prefer to walk to the summit, and/or ski, snowshoe and snow racquette. Climbing Mustagata qualifies you for Everest, Cho Oyu, Lhotse, and Shishapangma. www.MustagataExpedition.com . 1st - 25th July 2014. 25 days in China. Full Service Cost: $5750, £3550, €4450; Basic Climb Cost: $3150, £1950, €2450.
Grace and Max at the top of Cho Oyu (Max Kausch). Grace McDonald on the summit of Cho Oyu (Max Kausch). Cho Oyu at sunset. Trekking down to basecamp after a successful walk up to Cho Oyu ABC (Samuli Mansikka).
EVEREST TIBET ADVANCED BASECAMP WALK: www.AdvancedBasecampWalk.com - Full Service Cost: $3,850, £2,350, €2,950. Please join Scott Patch, for an exciting and affordable 20 day walk in April or May, and a good chance to see exotic Tibet, with the world's best views of Everest and test yourself at walking to 6400 metres / 21,000 feet. FULL SERVICE INCLUDES ALL TREK COSTS, FREE HOTEL AND SHERPAS.
READY FOR GLACIER TRAINING AND 6000 METRE / 20,000 FOOT HIGH PEAKS?
EVEREST GLACIER SCHOOL: AWARDED NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC'S "25 BEST NEW TRIPS": www.EverestGlacierSchool.com - PRICE: $2950 £1950, €2250, 22 days in April, May, or October. Nepal's famous ‘easy’ 'trekking peak' at 6000 metres / 20,000 feet. Seven day option: $1450, £950, €1050. April, May, or October. FULL SERVICE INCLUDES ALL CLIMB AND TREK COSTS, FREE HOTEL, INTERNAL FLIGHTS, AND SHERPAS.
ISLAND PEAK, NEPAL’S MOST FAMOUS ‘EASY’ TREKKING PEAK: www.IslandPeakExpedition.com .22 days in April, May, or October. Nepal's famous ‘easy’ 'trekking peak'. Climb to 6000 metres / 20,000 feet in just one day. Fabulous views of Lhotse south face and Makalu. Full Service Cost: $2950, £1950, €2250. Five day option: $1350. FULL SERVICE INCLUDES ALL CLIMB AND TREK COSTS, FREE HOTEL, INTERNAL FLIGHTS, AND SHERPAS.
MOUNT MERA ‘TREKKING-PEAK’ CLIMB: 22 days in October. Join usfor this gorgeous walk-climb of Mount Mera at 6500 metres / 21,500 feet, with some of the best views of Everest imaginable. PRICE: $3150, £2050, €2450.www.MeraPeakExpedition.com and www.MeraPeakNews.com . Bring your skis and snowboard if you are excited about skiing and/or boarding down this peak. FULL SERVICE INCLUDES ALL CLIMB AND TREK COSTS, FREE HOTEL, INTERNAL FLIGHTS, AND SHERPAS.
NEW CLIMATE CHANGE TREK: 21 days in April, May or October. Leader UlyanaHorodyskyj is a PhD candidate at the Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES) at the University of Colorado Boulder and her work focuses on the changing state of the Himalayan glaciers. Explore the melting glaciers near Everest while trekking Nepal's most famous and beautiful basecamp first climbed by Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Sherpa, as well as Gokyo. Work together with glacier researchers to understand how glacier lakes are growing as the glacier recedes. Also, walk on wide trails through lovely terraced villages perched besides rapidly flowing rivers beneath the towering snowy giants of the Himalaya to with stunning views of Everest. Cost: $2250, £1,450, €1,750. www.ClimateChangeTrek.com back to top
Team ascending steepening head-wall to second summit of Baruntse. Team walking up toward Baruntse's second summit. Team member preparing to cross the crevasse that demarcates the beginning of the long summit ridge, that's Ama Dablam behind left of centre (Dan Mazur). Dolma, Mia and Squash enjoying making new friends at the Deboche Nunnery (Dan Mazur). Squash leading the glacier travel rope team on the Cho La pass. Behind her are Gary, Phoebe and Irma with Ama Dablam in the background (Squash Falconer).
Your Nepal visa is conveniently purchased by you upon arrival at the Kathmandu airport. It is not necessary to purchase a Nepalese visa prior to landing in Nepal. In 2013, the cost of a 60 day visa was $40 USD. If you will be going to Tibet, we recommend getting a 60 day double-entry Nepal visa upon arrival at the airport in Kathmandu instead of the normal single entry visa. Thus, when reentering Nepal upon your return from Tibet at the end of the trip you won't have to purchase a new visa. Please bring cash and 2 extra passport-sized photos (extra photos are necessary to obtain the visa in the airport).
YOUR NEPAL VISA IS BEST PURCHASED WHEN YOU ARRIVE AT THE KATHMANDU AIRPORT: When you arrive in Kathmandu airport, you will fill out the arrival and visa forms available on the tables, and then the immigration officials will stamp your Nepal visa into your passport at the immigration counter. You will provide your passport sized photo and pay cash (dollars, pounds, or euros) for the visa at that time. If you forgot your photo, you have one taken there, for 300 rupees (but you will have to stand in another queue and change your money into rupees first. If you are staying in Nepal, get a single entry visa for the total number of days you will be in Nepal.
If you are going to Tibet, please obtain a double entry Nepal visa for the total of number of days of your trip, including the time you will be gone in Tibet also (ie: if you will be in Tibet for 30 days, and in Nepal for 3 days at the beginning and 3 days at the end, you would obtain a 60 day double entry Nepal visa). Note: your Tibet visa will be obtained at the Chinese embassy in Kathmandu. It will cost between $100-$250 depending on what country you are from and you are responsible for bringing cash and paying for that upon arrival. back to top
1) Purchase your flight ticket now. Flights are still available. Return flights from UK-Kathmandu-UK are around 600 pounds, 650 euros, $850. Return flights from USA-Kathmandu-USA are around $1500. Please let us know if you need assistance in booking your ticket. We are here to help. back to top
2) Application paperwork and payment - what we need in your file, which we encourage you to send us by email. Now is the time for the completion of registration formalities, if you have not done so already.
Delay in receipt of the following items listed below may result an inability to get you onto the permit and perhaps even a delay of your departure from Kathmandu.
Here is a checklist of what we need to have in your file immediately. If you have not already sent these, please do. We encourage you to send an electronic scan of all of the below documents, please be sure they are signed. Thank you:
[ ] Completed Payment. Please restate payments you made and what those payments were for, ie full vs basic, sherpas, oxygen, etc.
[ ] Make your Oxygen order (if any) crystal clear at this time, number of bottles, masks, payment, etc.
[ ] Make your Sherpa order (if any) crystal clear at this time, personal sherpa, quarter sherpa (equipment carriage service), payment, etc.
[ ] Signed and Scanned Trip Registration and Waiver Forms (part 4 page form)
[ ] Signed Medical Form (part of 4 page form),
[ ] 2 Passport-Sized Photos Scan
[ ] Scan of passport identification pages,
[ ] Complete flight itinerary,
[ ] Proof of mountain rescue, travel, accident, and repatriation insurance (cancellation insurance is advised).
Please do let us know what further questions you may have about the registration process, or anything else for that matter. Thank you. back to top
Ascending Lhotse Face by Scott Smith. Decending Into Khumbu Icefall, below camp 1. by Scott Smith.
3) Please bring all of your personal paperwork, including your original proof of insurance, at least two extra photos, etcetera.
4) Please make sure to budget enough cash and bring it along with you to Kathmandu. Credit cards are of no use once you leave Kathmandu, and even in Kathmandu credit cards are still quite often not accepted by shops, hotels, and restaurants. If you wish to use your bank ATM card in Kathmandu, you will only be able to withdraw Nepalese rupees and not dollars, euros, pounds, etc. Once you are away from Kathmandu you won't be able to obtain any cash and sometimes it’s hard to change money other than US dollars, etcetera. We've found it's better to be prepared and bring too much cash than not enough. Note on traveler's cheques: They are not useful. Please bring enough cash to cover your expenses for the following:
- A. Hotels in Kathmandu (KTM);
- B. Restaurants in KTM;
- C. Shopping in KTM;
- D. Nepal and Tibet visas;
- E. Emergency cash for Tibet rescue;
- F. Tips for staff, sherpas, summit bonuses, etc;
- G. Shopping and drinks (coke, beer, etcetera) during trek and in Tibet.
- Cho Oyu members: please bring at least $1800 cash with you for the expedition.
- Baruntse members: please bring at least $1000 cash with you for the trip.
- Ama Dablam members: please bring at least $1000 cash with you for the trip.
- Everest Glacier School members: please bring at least $750 cash with you for the trip.
- Mera Peak members: please bring at least $750 cash with you for the trip.
- Island Peak members: please bring at least $750 cash with you for the trip.
- Everest Basecamp walkers: please bring at least $750 cash with you for the trip.
- Remote Nepal Service walkers: please bring at least $750 cash with you for the trip.
NEPAL BANK ATM MACHINES: There are good bank, cash, atm machines, especially in KTM. However, these cash machines will only distribute Nepali rupees, so you must bring foreign currencies, $, £, €, from home. Travelers cheques are inconvenient. They can only be handled by large banks and may only be claimed into Nepali rupees. You can’t use them to buy things, pay for hotels, restaurants, nor for tips/gratuities. Be sure to bring extra cash to Tibet and Nepal basecamps for tipping the sherpas and staff as many of them will not be returning to KTM. $, £, €, work well in Kathmandu. For Nepal walks and climbs, you will change money into rupees after arriving in Kathmandu.back to top
Team on the north summit of Mount Shisha Pangma. Clockwise from foreground: Jangbu, Gyelzen, Karten, Alejandro, Haris, Bart, and Richard. Team working their way past the gendarme (Dan Mazur). Namche Bazaar, the capital of the Sherpa people. See this unique village on our trek to and from basecamp (Tunc Findik). Elselien te Hennepe, our past Everest basecamp leader, receiving a blessing from the local Buddhist Lama in Pangboche (Liz Stevens).
5) Helicopter rescue, repatriation and travel insurance are required and cancellation insurance is recommended. Do you have your proof of travel and mountain rescue insurances? Remember, you need to be covered for all mishaps, including both in town, enroute, and during climbing and/or walking. We are glad to advise you about different types of insurance and where to find them. Nowadays good insurance is available for any person from every country in the world. If you have sent the above, thank you very much. back to top
6) Your credit card is your helicopter rescue bond. We will require you to complete a credit card authority letter, and attach your credit card. This will be taken care of at our office in Kathmandu. The letter and your credit card will be kept locked in our safe and we have never had a problem with this in the past. We need the name and contact details of an emergency contact person who is available 24 hours a day, speaks English, and is able to wire funds to Nepal on your behalf, up to $20,000, on immediate notice. This is in case you are injured and require a helicopter rescue (only available in Nepal, not available in Tibet, where rescue is via yak and jeep, but you still need helicopter insurance for Tibet climbs, in case you need a Heli down from the Tibet border to Kathmandu as this road is sometimes closed). They never start the rescue until they have your money, and we are unable to pay for any rescue on your behalf. The above mentioned insurance is necessary and also required, but insurance companies are slow in paying claims, and we can't have you lying on the mountainside, awaiting the helicopter rescue flight while your insurance company investigates the claim. Thank you.
Summit view from Camp 3. Photo Martin. Member reaching Camp 3. Photo Martin
7) Arriving in KTM, meeting your flight, and going to your hotel.
Note: Our staff will meet you at the airport holding a "SummitClimb or SummitTrek" sign.
Our staff try to personally meet your flight at the Kathmandu airport and bring you to the hotel. We were able to meet all of our team members last season. Do we have your exact arrival (and departure) information, including: airline, flight number, arrival date, arrival time, coming from where? If you have sent the above, thank you very much. Before leaving the airport please change a little money ($20, 10 pounds, or 10 euros) into rupees at the exchange counter. You will get a better rate once you are inside Kathmandu, so please don’t change too much. When you walk out of the airport terminal, please walk slowly and carefully and look for the sign bearing your name (usually your last, or surname, but occasionally your first, or given name). The sign may also simply say "Summit Climb or Summit Trek". In case we miss you, please take a 300-500 rupee taxi to the hotel. We did not miss anyone last year, but some members did not read the signs. back to top
All members of all teams are urgently instructed to never tip more than $1 or 1 euro or 1 pound or 100 rupees at the airport in exchange for receiving help with your luggage. These airport people are becoming really persistent and expect that visitors will not know any better. Sometimes they ask for huge amounts of money and people give it to them, so please be aware and cautious when you arrive. Please also note that if 10 people try to carry your bag, they don’t all receive a tip. You just give the money to one of them and let them divide it among themselves.
If you are arriving early, please make sure to go check in at our office, so our staff can begin working on the permit, check your equipment, help with purchasing any missing bits, etcetera. back to top
8) Print out our KTM office details and carry with you at all times. Our Kathmandu office managers are:
Climbing & Trekking Office -
- Mr. Murari Sharma and Mr. Deha Shrestha
- Everest Parivar Expedition
- Office No:+977 1 4283382
- Halchok, Infront of Sasatra Head Quater, Shoyambhu
- Kathmandu, Nepal
- Residence Tel: 9771-4418210, 4428110
- Fax: 9771-4249835
- Mobile: (977) 985102-3985 or 985109-1456
PLEASE PRINT OUT ITEM 8 AND CARRY IT WITH YOU AT ALL TIMES (ESPECIALLY ON ARRIVAL) IN CASE YOU BECOME LOST. back to top
9) KTM HOTEL. Your trip includes 2 free Kathmandu hotel nights at the beginning and two free Kathmandu hotel nights at the end of the trip. You will be sharing. If you want your own single room, the cost is an additional $32 per night and for extra nights $65 per person for single occupancy.This a clean and comfortable "two-star" hotel. We use good quality hot water hotels in a central neighborhood, near many tasty restaurants, and excellent mountain equipment and gift shopping, as well as our trekking and mountain climbing office where we meet before and after the adventure. Extra nights before or after the trip itinerary will be $60 for a double room and we are happy to book these for you. Please just let us know your flight arrival and departure dates and we will take care of your accommodations while in Kathmandu.
We are able to book extra nights if you wish to arrive earlier than the trip start date or stay later then the trip end date.
Here is the information for the "two-star" hotel we are using this year:
- Hotel Shakti
- Amrit Marg, Bhagwan Bahal, Thamel,
- Kathmandu, Nepal
- Tel.: 977-1-4700902, 977-1-4700893 back to top
10) Arrive in KTM on the first day of our itinerary for the team orientation. All members must be present on the first day of our scheduled itinerary in Kathmandu unless you have made special arrangements. We need your passports on that day so that we can obtain the permit for you to go to the mountains, and do quite a bit of intensive orientation, training, and shopping before setting off for the mountains, in the next day or two. It’s fine if you want to arrive earlier. Below are the dates we require you to arrive in Kathmandu (of course its no problem to arrive earlier).
- Everest: 8 April.
- Lhotse: 8 April.
- Everest Tibet Training Climbs: 8 April or 22 April.
- Everest Nepal Training Climbs: 8 April or 22 April
- ABC Everest Tibet Treks: 8 April or 22 April.
- Everest Glacier School: 8 April or 22 April.
- Everest Base Camp Trek Nepal (and optional Island Peak): 8 April or 22 April.
- Everest Basecamp Service Trek: 8 April.
- Cho Oyu: 22 April.
- Remote Nepal Service Trek: 15 June
11) Please don’t plan on leaving before the last day of our itinerary. We need you to stay until the last day of the expedition. Below I have noted the dates for your return flight home at the end of each expedition. Of course its fine if you want to stay on after the expedition ends and there are lots of fun things to do in Nepal like wild game viewing safaris, rafting, visit lakeside in Pokhara, etcetera. back to top
- Everest: 6 June.
- Lhotse: 6 June.
- Everest Tibet Training Climbs: 5 May or 19 May.
- Everest Nepal Training Climbs: 8 May or 22 May.
- ABC Everest Tibet Trek: 27 April or 11 May.
- Everest Glacier School: 29 April or 13 May.
- Everest Base Camp Trek Nepal: 25 April or 9 May.
- Island Peak: 29 April or 13 May.
- Everest Basecamp Service Trek: 29 April.
- Cho Oyu: 29 May.
- Remote Nepal Service Trek: 27 June
12) For an equipment list for climbing, walking and group equipment, please go to 'equipment' link on the top bar of the SummitClimb and SummitTrek website. NOTE: all equipment MUST be in a locked kit-duffle-holdall bag with your name in LARGE LETTERS. Unlocked rucksacks and unlocked bags of any kind are not advised.
13) Shopping in KTM. Our planned schedule allows plenty of time for equipment shopping in Kathmandu, where there are so many shops that you will find everything you need. Here is a partial list for those desiring to contact Nepalese shops and manufacturers:
For hardwear like boots, crampons, ice-axes and harnesses, go to t
he Everest Summitters shop in Thamel. Email: email@example.com , phone: (9771) 4219404, 4468775. back to top
For soft goods like down jackets trousers and suits, we have used two shops:
- A. Shona's Shop in Thamel: e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org , phone: +977-1-4265120
- B. Everest Hardwear shop in Thamel. e-mail email@example.com , tel +977-1-4230399, mobile (977)98510 45706
Note: Down suit orders in Kathmandu will require 2 weeks notice due to power cuts. Please contact a manufacturer as soon as possible.
14) Storing excess baggage and personal possessions - valuables in KTM. We provide secure facilities in Kathmandu in which to store your extra personal items such as luggage, extra money, credit cards, passports (those people going to Tibet need their passports), jewelry, expensive watches, etcetera. These facilities are kept locked and are extremely safe. All bags left in storage must have your name clearly written in large letters.
15) Depart KTM for the mountain. After completing our orientation session and receiving permits, we plan to depart Kathmandu the following day.
16) Buy your mattress in KTM. Regarding mattresses, above basecamp, we do not recommend anything you have to inflate. These "therma-rest" are unreliable with all of the sharp iceaxes, crampons, and rocks that we will encounter. I never saw one not puncture when used above basecamp. These are a liability and dangerous. Please don’t depend on an inflatable matt above basecamp. Several traditional closed cell foam non-inflatable karimat mattresses are preferred. I like to bring 3 or 4 mattresses as they are inexpensive and I want to sleep warmly and comfortably at night. These are available very inexpensively in Kathmandu, so there is no need to bring any from home. Why fly around the world with a kit/duffel bag filled with foam? Our planned schedule allows plenty of time for equipment shopping in Kathmandu.
17) Climbers and walkers-bring or buy duvet-down jacket. Fairly good quality down/duvet gear is available in Kathmandu inexpensively and is a crucial part of your equipment. Everest, Lhotse, Cho-Oyu and Shishapangma climbers will, in addition, need a duvet/down jacket with an insulated hood and duvet/down trousers as well. Or, many 8000 metre / 26,000 foot climbers prefer a down/duvet suit. We recommend you advance order your Kathmandu down/duvet clothing so you know it's available. Due to power cuts, 2 weeks advanced notice is necessary. back to top
18) Food during the expedition -
- Snack Food: Bring your own snack food. All basecamp and walk meals and high meals (3 per day) are included in our full-service expeditions. We provide more than enough food and cooking fuel for three meals per day on the high mountain. However, we ask each climbing member to provide their own daily-snacks and freeze dried meals at high altitude while climbing above basecamp. We do not provide any daily snack energy food, you need to provide your own. Please remember to bring your daily snack-energy mountain food for each day we are climbing above basecamp on the mountain. This food would consist of chocolate bars, power bars, energy gel, rehydration drinking powder, sweets, nuts, sausage, cheese, etc.. More and more items are available in Kathmandu, but choice may be limited. A wide variety of imported sweeets, snacks, and chocolates were available, with quality brands such as Cadbury, Snickers, Lindt and Cafe d'Or in abundance. The prices were not bad. There were many kinds of local snacks and powerbars available, but they still do not import foreign power bars, energy gel, etcetera.
- Freeze-dried/Dehydrated meals: We request you bring your own freeze-dried meals. No freeze-dried food is available for purchase in Kathmandu. You must bring it from home. If you like imported cheeses, tinned meats, and other specialty foods, please bring them.
Here is the list of food we suggest you bring for yourself:
- Cho Oyu: 2-5 kilos - 4 to 10 pounds of snacks and at least 3 freeze-dried dinners;
- Baruntse/Mera Peak - 2-4 kilos - 4 to 8 pounds of snacks and at least 2 freeze-dried dinners (NOTE: only half that much if you are just doing Mera Peak);
- Ama Dablam - 2-4 kilos - 4 to 8 pounds of snacks and at least 2 freeze-dried dinners;
- Everest Glacier School and Island Peak: 1-2 kilos - 2 to 4 pounds of snacks;
- Everest Basecamp (with optional Island Peak climb): 1-2 kilos - 2 to 4 pounds of snacks;
- Remote Service Walk Nepal - 1-2 kilos - 2 to 4 pounds of snacks; back to top
19) Boots and shoes for your climb - walk. Regarding shoes, please wear the following:
- Cho Oyu: "One-Sport Everest Millet" boots high on the mountain and sturdy- lightweight trekking boots for walking to camp 1.
- Ama Dablam: Plastic double boots or "One-Sport Everest Millet" boots. Also sturdy- lightweight leather boots for rock climbing to camp 2.
- Baruntse: Plastic double boots or "One-Sport Everest Millet" boots. Also sturdy- lightweight trekking boots for walking to camp 1.
- Everest Glacier School: Sturdy warm climbing boots that are made for crampons, in addition to comfortable lightweight walking shoes with good ankle support that are water repellant and well “broken-in”.
- Mera Peak: Sturdy warm climbing boots that are made for crampons (boots must fit with two thick pair of socks), in addition to comfortable lightweight walking shoes with good ankle support that are water repellant and well “broken-in”.
- Everest Basecamp: Comfortable lightweight walking shoes with good ankle support that are water repellant and well “broken-in”. There is no snow on our walk.
- Remote Service Walk Nepal: Comfortable lightweight walking shoes with good ankle support that are water repellant and well “broken-in”. There is no snow on our walk.
- Island Peak: Sturdy climbing boots that are made for crampons, in addition to comfortable lightweight walking shoes with good ankle support that are water repellant and well “broken-in”. back to top
Please note: Members who have tried to wear leather or single boots to the summit of our 7000 metre / 23,000 foot plus climbing peaks have suffered frostbite. Not recommended, and, in fact, for 7000 metre / 23,000 foot plus climbing peaks we may disqualify you from the trip if you are planning to climb in only leather or single boots. Frostbite is not an option on our expeditions.
Good shoes and all types of climbing boots are available for purchase and hire inexpensively in Kathmandu. Our planned schedule allows plenty of time for equipment shopping in Kathmandu. Let us know your size and we are glad to check for you! IF YOU HAVE VERY SMALL OR VERY LARGE FEET, PLEASE TELL US BEFORE, AND WE WILL CHECK THE KATHMANDU SHOPS FOR AVAILABILITY.
Camp 3 and surround views on Everest Tibet. Members heading for the summit (Arnold Coster).
20) Tipping your leaders, sherpas, and staff. Regarding gratuities (tips). Our leaders, sherpas, and staff are among the best, because we can count on receiving gratuities for a job well done at the end of each expedition. You will be impressed when you see just how hard we do work. It is a matter of pride for all of us. Besides individual tips, we also ask you to pay an additional “group” tip and we will "pool" these tips together and then, as a group, we will vote on the distribution of the gratuities to the individual staff. This method has seemed to be the fairest and has worked very well in the past. In addition there will be a high-altitude bonus. We recommend at least the following tip for our group staff: back to top
- Baruntse: $200
- Ama Dablam: $200
- Cho Oyu: $250
- Mera Peak: $150
- Everest Glacier School: $150
- Everest Basecamp Treks: $125
- Remote Service Trek Nepal: $125
- Island Peak: $150
Each member should expect to pay the above tip no matter what. On our peak climbs, for a group Sherpa, who helps you to climb above the high camp or up to the summit and back down, expect to pay a summit-attempt bonus as follows:
- Cho Oyu Summit Attempt Bonus: $200, Summit Success: $500.
- Baruntse Summit Attempt Bonus: $100, Summit Success: $200.
- Ama Dablam Summit Attempt Bonus: $100, Summit Success: $200.
The above amount of money may be split between climbers who were in the summit party. If you have a personal Sherpa, your tip will be at least 30% more. We request you to bring this money with you to basecamp in cash, and be ready to pay it there, as many of our staff are local and will not be returning to Kathmandu with us. Traveler’s cheques and credit cards may be of use in Kathmandu, but they will not work in basecamp. back to top
21) Bring gifts for sherpas and staff. Regarding other gifts you may wish to provide, please bring as many as possible. These equipment donations are quite important to our staff and their families as they are often handed down to needy relatives and Sherpas who are learning to climb and need some assistance. Most, if not all sherpas got their start on "hand-me-down" kit.
Do you have extra mountain equipment, clothing, and shoes/boots? Older equipment, shoes, and clothing are fine. We encourage you to bring any extras for our staff. Please remember that Sherpa people come in all sizes (from extra small to extra large), and would appreciate any rucksacks, old harnesses, helmets, ice-axes, old ice and rock gear, warm clothing, goretex and fleece, pile, down, and duvet clothing, windproof clothing, and any kind of out-of-door shoes and boots, including walking, climbing, running, etc. Children’s and Women’s clothing is also needed. Thanks for helping and being so very thoughtful.
22) Telephone. We plan to have access to mobile and satellite telephone during the walk and in basecamp. Those wishing to use our sets are required to post a $100 deposit, prior to departure from Kathmandu. The cost is $4 per minute. Incoming calls are not possible. If your usage exceeds the deposit amount, you will be required to pay more cash in basecamp, or stop using the phone. Be sure to bring enough $, £, or €. While unable to receive telephone calls, at times members can receive short text/SMS for $4 a message from their friends and family. back to top
23) Website where your friends, family, and colleagues, can read about your expedition. There may be a website where your family, friends, colleagues, and sponsors can watch the progress of our climbs and walks. This website is a public service from www.SummitClimbNews.com and www.SummitTrekNews.com . Once reaching the site please go to “recent news” and you will see the dispatches from your expedition. We have traditionally asked all members to become involved and to write or phone "dispatches" or reports about the progress of our expedition. However, these dispatches are only to be about your impressions of our climb and are strictly for public viewing. Please don’t confuse them with personal phone calls to family, loved ones, friends and colleagues at home.
24) Battery charging: laptop, ipod, mp3 player, and/or digital camera. On our climbs, we often bring a solar charging system on the expedition that members have access to. As long as there is sun, we are able to charge batteries easily on the mountain. Be sure to bring your wall charger compatible to Kathmandu’s 220 volt current (when its working). We encourage you to bring your own smaller solar panel, as these seem to work very well.
Computer, ipod, mp3, camera note: Laptops work well up to about 4000 metres/13,000 feet. Altitude can destroy or wipe hard drives bigger than 7 - 10 GB above this altitude, or hard drives that have a moving disk. There are several options out on the market for laptops with non moving hard drives that work well in altitude.
Some early ipod and mp3 players have this problem as well. Check to make sure your ipod does not have a moving drive, especially before you turn it on above 4000 metres/13,000 feet. We have had several instances where these were wiped or crashed.
Digital cameras work well. We recommend that you keep them in your jacket during the day and in your sleeping bag at night. back to top
Lots of yaks carrying load to ABC on Mount Everest. Photo Rikke. Member hiking up to ABC. Photo Chris Bailley.
25) Bring or buy warm mittens. Special warm high-altitude mittens are necessary for all of our climbs, for example: http://outdoorresearch.com/home/style/home/handtools/gloves/ascent/71870 . You won't need to wear any liner gloves inside these mitts (they already have their own integral liner) so fit is very important. This company ships around the world. Be sure to discuss the size of your hand and what size mitt you might need with the person at the shop. back to top
26) Bring or buy a figure 8. Climbers, please be sure to bring a "figure 8" for rappelling/abseiling. Modern rock climbing descenders ie: "atc’s" do not work on fixed line, and are a liability because they slow you and the team down considerably. It is hard for some people to believe until they witness this personally, but we are asking you to believe it now. Please go out and purchase a figure 8. You may also purchase a figure 8 in Kathmandu.
27) Bring spoon and cup. Please remember to bring your own personal cup and spoon for altitude. Bring it from home or purchase it in Kathmandu.
28) Group vs personal sherpas. Our climbing sherpas carry group equipment. They will not be carrying your personal equipment. Each year, at least one of our team members decides to hire their own personal sherpa. We encourage you to do so, especially if you are not excited about climbing with a rucksack which is heavily loaded with your personal equipment, oxygen, water, and snack food. We now encourage members who need a bit of extra assistance to use our "equipment carry service”. The cost will be 1/4 (not including the tip, which you must also pay) and includes carriage of ten kilos of your personal equipment up and down to and from basecamp to the highest camps. For more information, please visit our Sherpa link on the Leader tab of each website . By the way, hiring your own personal sherpa has been shown to markedly increase summit success and safety, especially on descent. back to top
29) Cho Oyu oxygen. About half of our Cho Oyu team members use oxygen. Cho Oyu is not like Everest where oxygen is absolutely necessary, but many Cho Oyu climbers prefer it because it gives them a little extra edge of "insurance" that they will be feeling as well as possible when resting in the high camp and on summit day. In addition, supplemental oxygen usage has been shown to markedly reduce the incidence of frostbite. Our Sherpas will try to help you carry the oxygen, and 3 four-litre bottles should be more than enough for Cho Oyu, and you also need the mask, hoses, and regulator. We 100% guarantee all of our bottles and oxygen systems, and test them thoroughly with the mask/hose/regulator set-up. We have our own oxygen analysis instrumentation, and we are able to certify the contents are 100% oxygen. Additionally, we are able to measure the volume of contents in the bottle. Our bottles/masks/hoses/regulators are 100 percent guaranteed and reliable. We always have spare parts and back up bottles, masks, regulators, and hoses. We have a 30% "buy-back" policy on unused oxygen, and masks, hoses, and regulators in good condition, so its like you are renting the oxygen and equipment.
Here are the costs:
- A. Cho Oyu: 3 bottle set: $2150 (30% buy-back policy applies).
If purchased separately:
- B. Mask + Hoses (guaranteed to be in perfect working order and match the bottles and regulator perfectly): $285 (30% buy-back policy applies).
- C. Regulator for high-altitude oxygen bottle (guaranteed to be in perfect working order and match the bottle and mask and hoses perfectly): We have a 40% buy-back policy on regulators in good condition. $485 (30% buy-back policy applies).
- D. One large Russian Oxygen 4 litre bottle for high-altitude climbing (guaranteed to be in perfect working order and match the regulator and mask and hoses perfectly): $510 (30% buy-back policy applies). back to top
In an effort to reduce environmental pollution and encourage reuse and recycling, we now offer a $60 cash bonus for each empty oxygen cylinder you bring down to basecamp/abc in working condition.
Oxygen buy-back policy: We have a 30% discount buy-back policy on unused oxygen bottles, regulators in good condition, and masks and hoses in good condition. Refunds take 90 days to process from the pre-planned expedition date to process. NOTE: We will hold 100% of your unused oxygen bottles, regulators in good condition, and masks and hoses in good condition towards a future expedition with us.
30) Please consider donating supplies, clothing, funds, building materials, solar equipment, etcetera, as well as your own time and efforts to the Mount Everest Foundation for Sustainable Development in Nepal and Tibet. Your donation will be used wisely by the Foundation which exists to help poor farmers help themselves. These families live in Nepal and Tibet near Everest, but far from the tourist trail where life is very primitive, making Nepal the 12th poorest country in the world and the poorest country in all Asia. The foundation builds schools and hospitals and protects fragile environments. Please see what we have been doing with recent donations at www.ServiceTrekNews.org . We encourage you to become involved and we conduct service treks and volunteer projects you might wish to join. back to top
Thank you so much for all of your kind compassion and wonderful help to the people of Nepal and Tibet!!!
31) What have we forgotten? Please express yourself now, and communicate all of your thoughts, questions, and ideas. It is very important that we build another top team this year by working together, beginning today. We always enjoy discussing our favorite subject: MOUNTAINS. Also, this kind of conversation may help us to understand one another's expectations.
32) Let us begin climbing and walking. We are looking forward to further discussion, to meeting, to climbing and walking together, and to seeing you feeling well on the trek, in basecamp, the upper camps, on the summit, and on the way back down.
Thank you very much, Cheers for now and we look forward to climbing and walking with you soon, Yours Sincerely, from Dan Mazur and all of us at SummitClimb.com and SummitTrek.com . back to top
Thanks for telling all of your friends about what we are trying to do.
- -Dan Mazur
- Email: Dan@SummitClimb.comand Dan@SummitTrek.com
- Skype: dan.mazur8848
- UK telephone: +44 (0)7810 375400 (evenings best, I may be out climbing in the day)
- US telephone: (+1)360-570-0715 (please leave a message in case I am out in the hills)
- Web: www.SummitClimb.com and www.SummitTrek.com
- Latest climbing news: www.SummitClimbNews.com
- Latest walking news: www.SummitTrekNews.com
- Latest charity / non profit news: http://www.summitclimb.com/new/default.asp?vid=948&linktype=m&mtype=smenu
- Featured Climb: www.EverestNepalClmb.com and www.ElbrusSummitClimb.com
- Featured Training Climb: www.EverestTrainingClimb.com
- Featured Walk: www.EverestNepalWalk.com&www.ServiceTrek.org
- UK address: 30 Downfield Lodge, Downfield Road, Clifton, Bristol, BS8 2TQ, England;
- US address: POB 123, Lakebay, WA, 98349;
Ps. Congratulations, you made it to the bottom of this newsletter. You must have the patience and perseverance necessary to become a team member of www.SummitClimb.com and www.SummitTrek.com . back to top