Sunday, December 25, 2016

Everest Trek | Videos

South Col Expeditions treks the Everest region every year. This post shows two videos shot on our Everest  trek. The first one is a panorama view from the high point of Gokyo Ri above the Gokyo lakes with a view of four 8000 metre peaks - Everest, Lhotse, Makalu and Cho Oyu. The second shows the view just outside Namche Bazar on the trail to Kyanjuma.

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Saturday, December 17, 2016

Apa Sherpa | 21 Everest Summits

The certificates and awards for Apa Sherpa
On the way back to Namche Bazaar after crossing the Rhenjo La pass on the Everest trek,  we stopped for lunch at Thami at the lodge of the famous Everest sumitteer Apa Sherpa who has 21 Everest summits to his credit. Apa was away in the USA but his brother and their family were present. They showed us around the lodge and we had a pleasant lunch with them in the sun. Here are some photographs and memorablia of Apa Sherpa from the lodge:

Apa's lodge in Thami

Apa's brother and his family in front of the lodge

Kangetga, Thamserku and Kusum Kangaru seen from the lodge

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Gokyo 5th Lake and Rhenjo La | Peakfinder Screenshots

Everest, Nuptse and Lhotse from Gokyo Ri sunser

A South Col team trekked the Gokyo valley, went up to the fifth lake and then crossed Rhenjo La pass down to Thami and Namche Bazaar. A description of the crossing of Rhenjo La is here. The Peakfinder screen shots below give the altitudes and the location of the peaks on this route.

Screen shots from above the fifth Lake of Gokyo

Screenshots from the Rhenjo Pass

Screenshots from Lungden below the Rhenjo Pass in the Bhote Kosi valley

Screenshots from Thami

Saturday, December 3, 2016

Rhenjo La Crossing | Everest Trek

The Rhenjo Pass as seen from the third lake of Gokyo

The trail to the top of Rhenjo La

Rhenjo La  - The crossing of the pass from Gokyo to Thami

The Rhenjo La is one of the three high passes on the Everest trek the other two being Kongma La and the most popular one is the Cho La.  The Rhenjo La can be crossed from the Gokyo side as well as from the Thami - Lungden side. However it is advisable to cross the pass from the Gokyo side as the climb from the Lungden side is extremely long and tiring.

Gokyo 4750 metres  to Rhenjo La 5357 metres 
We left Gokyo at around 6 15 am and headed out towards the pass on a trail that skirted the third lake and climbed gently for an hour. The trail then began to climb steeply following a series of switchbacks for another 45 minutes to one hour until it reached a flattish plateau from where there was an excellent view of Everest and the other peaks including Makalu which started peeping over a rock face.  This plateau can get snowed under and there are cairns to show the way. From the plateau the trail swung to the right and began climbing again through rocks and moraine. The pass can be seen from here with a row of prayer flags strung across the rocks. The climb from the meadow to the top of the pass would be another hour.
Gokyo to the top of the pass 3 to 4 hours

View from just below the pass looking down on the plateau

Looking towards the Lungden side of the pass - the trail below can be seen 
Rhenjo La 5357 metres  to Lungden 4400 metres
The pass has an excellent view both to the north and to the south. From the pass a very steep stone staircase leads down to an emerald lake which can be seen from the top. Pass the lake and the trail swings left following the natural contour of the valley. In about an hour or so there is a large lake on the left side - the trail passes this lake and climbs gently until it reaches some yak herders settlements made of stone. This part of the walk can be extremely cold and windy especially if it is foggy and cloudy. From here the path heads downwards and the lodges of Lungden can be seen in the valley below around 30 to 45 minutes away. Lungden has four or five lodges now so accommodation is not usually a problem.
Rhenjo La to Lungden 2 to 3 hours 

Looking back at the pass from about 20 minutes below on the trail to Lungden
The trail down past the first  lake to Lungden - the second lake below on the left

The last portion of the trail down to Lungden

Lungden 4400 metres  to Thami 3800 metres
It is now a pleasant stroll down the valley following the Bhote Kosi river. In around 40 minutes you reach the village of Maralung which has a couple of lodges. The trail continues to lose altitude and reaches the village of Taranga in another half hour. From here it is about  60 to 90 minutes pleasant walking to the lodges of Thami.
Lungden. To Thami  2.5 hours to 3 hours

The village of Thami
Thami  3800 metres to Namche 3450 metres  3 hours to 3.5 hours

For more information on South Col's treks do visit 


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