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From Lukla to Phakding

From Lukla to Phakding: The Exciting Start of Our Everest Base Camp Trek

Day 02: Sunday, April 17, 2011 (Kathmandu – Lukla – Phakding | 35 min flight & 4 hours trek)

Embark on a thrilling journey with us as we share our experiences from the exciting start of our Everest Base Camp Trek. From boarding a daring flight in Kathmandu to navigating the breathtaking trek between Lukla and Phakding, we invite you to immerse yourself in our adventure, marveling at the awe-inspiring beauty and cultural richness of the Himalayas.

The chaos in the morning

Before sunrise, we were up and ready, quickly eating breakfast and returning to the airport. We were booked on a Sita Air chartered flight to Lukla, where our trek would begin. Upon arriving at the airport, the airline staff frantically informed us that we were late, and that our delay had disrupted the flight schedule. They hurried half of our group onto the plane as quickly as possible. In the chaos, we noticed some missing bags and two team members who had yet to arrive. They eventually joined us, along with our trek organizer, and we managed to navigate through the disorder.

the chaos at the airport

The airport was in complete disarray, resembling a chaotic bus station in India. We spent half an hour amidst the confusion before receiving our boarding cards, which, surprisingly, had no names on them. There were no identity checks, and the security screening was lax. As we discussed this unusual experience, we waited in the boarding area for our delayed flight. An hour later, we were finally airborne, admiring the stunning views of the snow-capped Himalayan peaks.

Landing with a thud

However, our excitement was short-lived. As the Lukla airstrip came into view, we felt a wave of fear wash over us. Known as one of the world’s ten scariest airports, the runway was on an incline. Our small twin-otter plane landed with a jolt, causing everyone to momentarily lift off their seats. We clung to anything we could grab onto until the plane ascended the runway and parked. What a relief!

From Lukla to Phakding
The Lukla Airstrip
from Lukla to Phakding

As we disembarked, the beautiful surroundings quickly lifted our spirits. After taking numerous photos, we joined our other teammates at the hotel. We enjoyed a delicious lunch of dal-bhat, boiled vegetables, and vinegared carrot-radish pickle before setting off on our Himalayan conquest.

From Lukla to Phakding
The scrumptious meal of Dal Bhat

Surrounded by towering snow-capped peaks, lush vegetation, and the winding Dudhkoshi River, we walked through quaint Kumbhu villages where curious Nepali children looked on. Along the way, we encountered numerous Tibetan prayer houses, prayer wheels, and inscriptions carved into rocks. Fluttering prayer flags dotted the landscape, some reaching heights that rivaled the towering peaks, reminding us of the unwavering faith that transcends even the highest mountains.

From Lukla to Phakding
Scenic Views during the trek

After a four-hour trek through these enchanting villages and crossing several suspension bridges (known as Hillary bridges), we reached our destination for the day.

From Lukla to Phakding
One of the many Hillary Bridges
at Phakding

This small settlement, nestled along the banks of the Dudhkoshi River, offered several lodges for trekkers. Our accommodations for the night were cozy, with a warm dining area where we enjoyed a satisfying meal. The rooms were basic, equipped with a bed and a small lightbulb. Basic amenities, such as hot water and cell phone charging, were available for an additional fee.

Coming up next – Trek to Namche Bazaar


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