BestHike #8 – Everest Base Camp / 3 Passes

The Everest Base Camp via 3 Passes is one of our top 10 hikes in the world.

Click PLAY or watch a 1 minute introduction on YouTube.

Base Camp / 3 Passes

Everyone wants to hike to Everest Base Camp (5,320m / 17,450ft). The 3 Passes route is the most epic.

Based on weather and fitness, you can do one or more passes as well as peaks like Kala Pattar (5,545m) that don’t require a permit.

base camp sign

AT A GLANCE

Nepal
  • majority of hikers in the Everest region hire a guide, porter(s) and/or pack animal(s) but it’s fairly easy to do independently
  • guided trekkers stay in lodges, or sprawling tent encampments
  • October to November best months
  • beginning of March to mid-May next best
  • 16-18 days minimum for 3 Passes. 21 days would allow for rest / illness / sidetrip / and other unanticipated delays.
  • if you don’t have time, it’s recommended 14 days just to get to Base Camp and back safely.
  • generally easy hiking on good trails with a light pack. Some very challenging, potentially dangerous sections, if you cross any of the 3 Passes
  • on the main trails buy food as you go and stay in simple “lodges”
  • Everest trails are not expensive, but many spend more than they anticipate on luxuries
  • be clear — you might have to QUIT if by bad luck or rushed ascent you suffer altitude sickness (Acute Mountain Sickness or AMS).
  • many suffer respiratory problems. And fatigue.

Read more on our Everest Base Camp / 3 Passes information page.

Ammonite Falls the HARD WAY 😀

Trip report by BestHike editor Rick McCharles.

Without checking in advance, I cycled out for my first visit to Ammonite Falls near Nanaimo on Vancouver Island.

Most convenient for me was the Weigles Road trailhead.

January 15th was the best weather we’ve had in 2021. A perfect day.

And it’s an easy day hike.

What could go wrong?

Turned out the BENSON CREEK trail to the Falls was closed for MAJOR improvements. I had to find another way.

Later I found out that other trails to the top of the Falls were open. 😀

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

related – Outdoor Vancouver – Ammonite Falls Hike

Click PLAY or watch the hike from the Jameson road trailhead on YouTube.

WHY WALK?

One of the few good things about the pandemic is the number of non-hikers rediscovering the pleasures of walking.

It’s healthy, too.

Around 8,000 steps a day was linked with a 51 per cent lower risk of death from any cause compared with taking 4,000 steps.

Taking 12,000 steps a day was linked with a 65 per cent lower risk than taking 4,000 steps a day.

CBC

Walking Rail Lines on Vancouver Island

Very popular on Vancouver Island is walking alongside the disused (in 2011) Southern Railway. It’s dry. It’s flat. It’s straight. Often the shortest distance between two points.

Click PLAY or get a glimpse on YouTube. 30km between Nile Creek and Englishman River including 3 high trestles.

The British Columbia government now calls it the Island Rail Corridor. Approximately 289 km Victoria – Courtenay with connections between Parksville and Port Alberni and to the Nanaimo waterfront.

Though there’s still talk of restoring rail service, co$t looks prohibitive. Hikers want more of the corridor to be converted to non-motorized trail.

Of greatest concern are the 48 bridges and trestles that need ongoing repair.

With no maintenance, sections can be slippery. Overgrown.

These rail lines are old. Dating back to the 1800s.

At various times it’s been called the Esquimalt and Nanaimo Railway, E & N Railfreight and E&N Railway Co.

Wikipedia has a list of rail trails around the world. British Columbia has some of the best.

Rees-Dart Track, New Zealand

Though not on the short list of Great Walks, Rees-Dart is epic.

One of the tougher major hikes in our #1 hiking destination worldwide.

travel2walk was there January 2020.

The Rees-Dart Track … mainly follows the Rees River drainage and the Dart River drainage circling Mount Earnslaw and the Forbes Mountains.

An optional side trip during the hike is to visit the Dart Glacier or further to Cascade Saddle. Being the major highlight of our hike, I consider this side trip as part of the hike. …

  • distance: 53.7 miles (86.5 km)
  • elevation change: 10,850 ft (3,307 m) ascent & 11,240 ft (3,426 m) descent
  • time: 5 days (24:59 hours moving)

There are 3 different DOC operated huts located along the Rees-Dart Track …

… NZD$15 per night per person (DOC).

The huts had running water, bathrooms, mattress, and a stove for heating. However we carried our own stove, gas, and sleeping bags.  …

If interested, read their detailed trip report:

New Zealand – Rees-Dart Track, January 2020

If still keen, best watch the video. There are some challenges.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

See more of our best hikes in Australasia.