3rd October 2019
Day- 11 of trek Chheplung (2693MSL) to Lukla (2850 M) and then Flight Ramechhap Airport and 6 hours drive to Kathmandu.
Total Trek today 3 KMS.
We got up early by 5 AM to be ready by 6 AM as we had to reach Lukla by 7AM. We had to climb to Lukla.
Yesterday due to wet surface I slipped twice and landed on my bottom. It may be due to grip of my shoes. My waterproof shoe had leaked and twice during the last 10 days I had to change my wet socks. I had been using these shoes since 2016 and have completed Kailash Manas Yatra in 2017, Valley of Flowers and Hemkund Sahib in 2018 and EBC now. I decided to go in for new shoes.
Both our porters had gone to Lukla last night and they had not come back by 6 AM to carry our luggage. Shreen called and they were on their way down. He told us they will take just 20 mins to climb down and they would reach by 7:30AM with luggage.
We reached Lukla and saw a bright and sunny day and soon heard the sound of flights landing. We were so happy. We reached Lukla and it is very beautiful and clean place. We wanted to with draw money to pay tips to porters but both the ATM were down.
The moral of story is never depend on any ATM in hilly locations.
We reached a coffee shop dead opposite the airport and had the best coffee. We borrowed money from Ram and everyone pulled out all his cash reserve. We pooled N Rs. 11 K for each Porter and N Rs. 20 K for shreen as tips. We put them in envelops and handed to them with a huge thanks. They had indeed looked after us very well. It is because of them we could complete EBC trek safely.
Soon we checked in for 2nd SITA air flight to Ramechhap Airport. From 1st Oct all Lukla flights will take off and land from Ramechhap airport. No more Kathmandu - Lukla flights. This is done to reduce air traffic congestion at Kathmandu airport caused due to Lukla flights. Ramechhap is some 6 hours drive from Kathmandu. So now people need to factor this additional time in.
Monastery at Chheplung in the mountains similar to Tigers Nest in Bhutan.
Famous as the most difficult (technical) Airport in the world. Lukla
We trekked almost 200 KMS in 11 days and this is the Google map of our trek route.
On left side top is Phaplu and at the right side bottom is EBC.
Ram giving us entry Tickets of Sagarmatha National Park as souvenirs.
After Check in and final bye bye to team
My boarding card.
From waiting lounge
Very capable pilots.
Our flight at 9:30 AM
All seated for take off.
We reached Ramechhap in 20 mins and then took Sita Air bus to Kathmandu and reached our hotel by 5 PM. We stopped for lunch enroute.
Shiv ji enroute.
Our flights to Dubai was on 5th Oct at 4 PM, since we had reached on 3rd Kamal preponed his tickets to 10 AM flight on 4th Oct and put it on the whatsapp group. Kanak and me had decided to stay back and enjoy Everest beer and Kathmandu in general.
But my wife read Kamal's message and asked me if Kamal can change his ticket why can't I?
so I had to change and then Kanak also changed. We left Supriya on her own as her flight was on 5th noon.
We reached hotel, showered and went shopping and money exchange to pay back Ram.
We all bought shaligram and Rudrakshas.
Ram told us we will meet for dinner by 8PM in the hotel restaurant..
After dinner we got our certificates and 1 Litre of Manasarovar water and Explore Vacations gave us the difference of cancelled air ticket - jeep cost to Lukla. This is first time when someone returned us money after the tour was complete without us asking. Cannot dream of any tour operator in India doing this.
L to R .. Ram, me, Kanak, Kamal, Rabi (Manager of Explore) , Supriya and Prachanda (owner of Explore V)
We took Fly Dubai next morning but before that we went to Pashupati nath ji temple took his darshan.
Supriya went to see the Durbar Square next day and reached Delhi safely as planned on 5th Oct.
Guess end of the TL and I hope you folks enjoyed reading it. I did enjoy writing it.