After a long journey of bumpy and muddy road from Namtso Lake we arrived late in the afternoon into Shigatse, where we spend the night before heading to Everest the next morning. The problem travelling in Tibet even we already had a Tibet entry permit, there are many check points and we still need to apply another permit to enter into the Oomolangma (Everest) National Nature Reserved. The hassle of getting this permit in Shigatse is that we lost precious hours waiting for this to process especially if there are many tour groups.
The journey from Shigatse to Everest Base Camp is a long ride thru some villages, reaching the old town of Tingri then is driving across the mountainous range with some breathing scenic spots. The road up the Himalayas itself is via an amazing turn of bends snaking up to about 5000m and on a good clear weather day you’ll be able to the entire mountains range with the Everest standing above all the other peaks. There are a couple of scenic spots that’s a must stop for pictures where the view is breathtaking and the high altitude will leave you breathless.
During Summer, you will see fields of yellow rape seed flowers blooming like a huge carpet of yellow spots against fields of green Tibetan barley near the villages, while herds of Yaks are grazing freely at the nearby hilly slope. And it’s not surprising you’ll many tourists taking pictures in the yellow fields.
After an endless round of bends and some villages that seem to appear out of nowhere you’ll reach the world highest monastery of Rongbuk monastery at 4980m just a few kilometers away from Everest Base Camp. Some tourist chose to stay at the guesthouse just opposite the monastery, which has a good view of Mount Everest during sunset. During my first trip, here we stayed at this guesthouse, where a Tibetan family provide simple hot meals and water. The stupa with the majestic Everest in the background a favorite picture spot.
Just a short drive away is the final stop for tourist who are staying overnight at the base camp. There are many tents lined together with a huge car park in the center. Inside each tent there is a stove in the center so it’s rather warm inside when it packed with people. Each tent can sleep 6-12 people. But there is no toilet. You’ll have to go out further away from the tent to use the typical local toilet by paying 1 yuan. On my latest visit last July, I saw a few new mobile toilets but unfortunately there are lock. The tent owners can provide simple hot meals and breakfast too. Otherwise it’s best you bring some of your food just for the day.
If you are lucky and get to depart early from Shigatse to reach the camp site before sunset you can get a great view of Everest (providing the weather is good). In the morning, most people will take a short walk towards Everest, where you will find 2 stone slabs to indicate the Base camp and Everest peak. This view point is not the best as the sun is behind Everest but for most tourists this is still a landmark spot for their pictures. The original base camp has a better view but unfortunately that area is already closed to tourist.
After a long journey and an overnight stay at base campo it’s time to make our descent back to our Shigaste Hotel, where a warm room and comfortable bed awaits.
This series is captured with Nikon D850 + 16-35mm, 70-200mm lenses