Tag Archive for: Phakding

Trekking day 1:  Lukla to Phakding – Distance: 8.30 km – Elev Gain/Loss: 394m/-639m

Expedition leader, Garrett Madison, provides the recap of today’s exciting flight to the trailhead mountain village of Lukla and the first day of trekking towards Everest Base Camp:

Hello!  This is Garrett calling in for the Mountain Hardwear Everest expedition and base camp trek.  Today is September 8th.  We were very lucky this morning to have an early flight at 6:00 AM out of Kathmandu and landed in Lukla.  But not after a fun, unplanned stop in the small village of Phaplu on the way.  The clouds rolled in and the Lukla airport was closed en route on our flight so the pilot diverted and landed at a small airstrip on the way.  Then when the clouds parted our pilot took off and landed us in Lukla.


From Lukla we made our way up the start of the Khumbu Valley.  It’s amazingly green here right now!  It’s been raining so much at the end of the monsoon season.  Everything is just incredibly green and vibrant.  A lot of growth here – the vegetation, the trees, the forest…  So, we’ve got it really good here!  We are at Phakding in the Sunrise lodge.  We just finished a good dinner and are heading off to bed.


Tomorrow we are going to head up to Namche.  Everybody’s feeling great.  It’s surprisingly quite here in the Khumbu.  We have the lodge all to ourselves and we didn’t see many people on the trail today because it’s not quite the trekking season which starts up in October.  We are feeling great and looking forward to a great day trekking up to Namche tomorrow.

(photo:  Lukla airport from the Madison Mountaineering Everest archives)

In addition to these expedition dispatches, you can also follow the team as they trek to Everest Base Camp and then make their attempt to summit the world’s highest mountain on:


– our Garmin inReach Mini powered real-time tracking map:

Amazon Alexa devices with the Madison Mountaineering Flash Briefing skill:

  • Enable the skill and add to your flash briefing to hear Garrett Madison’s daily audio expedition updates

Today we had breakfast at 7 AM in the sunrise lodge in the village of Phakding. Afterwards we made our way through the lush valley and across suspension bridges to the village of Namche, the capital of t he khumbu. We just finished a marvelous dinner at the Panorama lodge and are ready to fall fast asleep! Another great day in the khumbu as we trek closer to Mount Everest!




Arrived At Lukla!

Today we flew early this morning from Kathmandu to Lukla, and then had a hearty breakfast in the Paradise lodge. We set off and enjoyed a casual day trekking up the Khumbu valley to the village of Phakding. It is wonderful to be enjoying the fresh mountain air and exercising after the long journey to Nepal from the USA. All members of our trekking and climbing team are doing well! The team heading up the trail!

The Madison Mountaineering team has trekked to the village of Namche Bazaar! Yesterday we arrived into the village after a challenging 4,000 vertical foot hike from Phadking. This remote village is located within the Khumbu area at 3,440 metres (11,286 ft) and is nestled quietly in the hills. The crew rested, drank tea and chatted it up with other trekkers and climbers in the Panorama Hotel. The trek was as beautiful as a hike could possibly be, through mountain villages, past small tea houses along the river and across high suspension bridges. This morning we took an acclimatization hike up to the Everest View Hotel and were rewarded with spectacular panoramic views of Mt. Everest, Ama Dablam and many other giants, reminding us of the wild country ahead of us. We will now rest up and continue to acclimatize our bodies as we push further into the mountains tomorrow. Enjoying the scrumptious food here in Namche Bazaar before we are back on the trails. Garrett and Sid are some of the best chefs on the mountain, so the team will be well taken care of!

Check out this article written by Outside if you have not already!

Team Photo:


Namche Bazaar:


Namche Bazaar:image-4

Mt. Everest, Lhoste, and Ama Dablam:image-5

Trekking into Namche Bazaar: image-7

Team Photo:image


Well, we’ve begun! The first leg of our journey to climb Burke-Khang is done. This morning we awoke around 4:30AM to catch our flight into the infamous Lukla airport, the portal the the Himalaya. Stoke was high as we filed into the small twin prop Dornier aircraft and soon we were in the sky, flying over deep, lush valleys, a stark contrast to the environment we are heading into just a short week away. The 45 minute flight deposited us into the unlikely hanging town of Lukla. Here we further sorted gear, helped (as much as we could) the porters pack the Yaks and before long we were off down the trail to the village of Phakding. The wonderful trail meanders through small villages and past tea houses with beautiful views the entire way. While wondering through the small villages we spoke with the locals and received best wishes for the journey ahead.

Here in Phakding, Garrett, Sid and the crew are resting, eating and preparing for the longer trek to Namche Bazaar in the morning where they will take an acclimatization day and prepare to head up to the Gokyo Valley and ultimately Burke-Khang.

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