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Tag: Everest region

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10 Facts about Namche Bazaar for a Trekker in the Everest Region

Namche Bazaar (3,440m) is a tourist hub and the most popular resting stop in the Khumbu region. This hilly settlement is shaped like a horse shoe and positioned in a very unconventional location. Immediately west of this bustling town is Kongde Ri (6,187m) and to the east is Thamserku (6,608m). In addition to the abundant hotels and lodges, Namche boasts of three small museums, a stupa, a monastery, several bakeries (cafes) and many well-stocked stores. Here, trekkers can access the modern communication facilities to stay connected to the outside world.

Namche Bazaar, a gateway to the high Himalayas and known for offering wonderful views of the snow-capped peaks, is considered to hold the distinction of being the wealthiest district in Nepal. It is in fact, a junction of trekking trails where different Everest trek routes are diverged.

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Most popular trekking trails to the Everest

Everest region is without doubt one of the most renowned trekking destinations in the world. The region is an area of high mountains, Sherpa villages, steep trails, but above all, incredible vistas. The Everest region offers a wide range of trekking experiences. From the Everest Base Camp Trek to trekking in remote semi-wilderness areas, there is much to choose from. The ease or difficulty of Everest trekking depends entirely on the route that you have chosen with the main trekking trails to Everest Base Camp being more difficult or the route to the pristine Gokyo valley being the easier choice. The trail from Salleri is also endowed with many conveniently located teahouses. Other trekking routes will, however, almost certainly require camping gear which means organizing trekking staff and equipment. The 7 popular trekking trails to the Everest region are shown here.

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Everest region to be linked by motor road

KATHMANDU, AUG 12 – The government has planned to build a motorable road linking Jiri with Surkhe village located at a distance of a two-hour walk from Lukla, the gateway to the Everest region. Tourism Ministry officials said that the construction of the 100-km road would be started during this fiscal year.

Travel trade entrepreneurs have long been urging the government to build a road linking the Everest region due to the costs and unpredictability of flight services. Trekkers and mountaineers headed for Everest usually fly into Lukla’s Tenzing-Hillary airport where the trail starts. Lukla is situated at an elevation of 2,860 m.

“The government has earmarked funds for the project, and the construction will begin by this fiscal year,” said Purna Chandra Bhattarai, joint secretary at the ministry. “The road is expected to facilitate tourism and transportation of cargo.”

The road from Jiri to Surkhe will pass through Salleri. Surkhe lies at an elevation of 2,289 m and a distance of 22 km from Salleri.

The Khumbu or Everest region is the most expensive place in the country as all supplies have to be flown in. A cylinder of LPG costs Rs 10,000 and a cup of tea more than Rs 250. Air freight from Kathmandu to Lukla costs Rs 150 per kg.

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Snow loss rate at Everest less than in Alps: Study

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), in its 2007 report, presented the startling projection that the Himalayan glaciers would disappear by 2035 if the earth keeps warming at the current rate.

The IPCC report, which apparently lacked sufficient data to substantiate its projection, was criticized by scientists for what they said was an erroneous calculation of glacier melting rates. After a global furor over its erroneous statement, IPCC admitted its mistake.

Five years after the IPCC fiasco, a study being conducted by a team of experts at the Mera and Pokalde glaciers in the Everest region has come up with yet another finding that could possibly rub salt into the wound for the leading international body for assessing climate change.

The study, a report of which was published in the November edition of The Cryosphere journal, concluded that the Mera and Pokalde glaciers, both located at altitudes of over 5,000 meters, are losing snow even in winter, contrary to a general belief that snow melts only in summer due to solar radiation. Wind erosion and sublimation are the prime causes of glacier melting in the Everest region in winter, explains the report.

In an additional finding that sounds still more astonishing, the report states that the rate of snow loss in the Everest region is nearly four times less than that in the Alps in Europe.

“In spite of snow loss even in winter, the rate of snow loss in the Everest glaciers is lower than that in the Alps,” says Patrick Wagnon, a visiting scientist at the International Center for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD). “It is probably because heavy precipitation compensates snow loss in the Everest glaciers.”

Wagnon, the lead author of the report, says their findings evidently contradict the conclusion reached in IPCC´s fourth assessment report. “Our findings imply that the Himalayan glaciers will not disappear by IPCC´s projected year even if the earth keeps warming at the current rate,” says Wagnon, who has been involved in research on the evolution of glaciers for the last 20 years. “However, having said that, it is also important to understand that even a slight increase in the global warming rate could certainly accelerate the glacier retreat rate in the Himalayan region,” he said.

Glacier melting in the Hindu-Kush Himalaya (HKH) region, arguably the world´s largest volume of glaciers and perennial snow outside the polar region, contributes to the major rivers that supply fresh water to almost a quarter of the human population, which lives downstream.

Hence, study of the evolution of glaciers in the HKH has always fascinated scientists across the world. “On the flip side, the controversial IPCC report did something good for the people in the Himalayan region,” says Wagnon. “Now, more scientists are focusing on the Himalayan glaciers, which could contribute to prevention of disasters like Glacier Lake Outburst Floods (GLOFs) in future.”

Wagnon´s team has been studying the Mera and Pokalde glaciers since 2007. As part of their study, they have been studying the seasonal and annual mass balances of these two glaciers twice a year — in summer and then in winter. Wagnon just returned from the Everest region after studying these two glaciers for this year´s winter. “Our study is a continuous process,” he said. “After some years, we will hopefully be able to make some projections about glacier melting in the Everest region.”

source: republica, 20 DEC 2013

10 best treks in the Everest region

The 10 best treks in the Everest region are among the most popular trekking routes in the world. The best treks in the Everest region will be a once in a lifetime adventure travel hike in the company of inspiring and breathtaking Himalayan scenery. Nowhere in the world is more spectacular than in the Everest region. Once you make it to the Base Camp of Everest via different trails, you are suddenly encircled with grand vistas of eight-thousanders. Here are listed the 10 best treks in the Everest region.

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