At 5360 metres (17, 585 feet) Gokyo Ri is one of the classic view points in Nepal to see Everest. As well as a more distant Makalu. Throw in Lhotse and there’s three 8,000 metre giants. Not bad eh?
I guess the thing is how do you get there? More importantly perhaps, what will you see?
Hopefully the piccies will address the latter. But, arguably one of the most spectacular views of the Himalaya in the Everest region without having to be an experienced mountain climber.
Gokyo Ri is a “Trekkers Summit”. In other words you can walk to its summit-no technical climbing involved.
To actually walk up to the top of Gokyo Ri would be rather easy if you were starting at sea level. But, you’re not ascending 17,000 plus feet to get to the view point (well, not all in one go).
In fact from the starting point (the village of Gokyo) it’s around a 3 hour ascent of a mere 570 metres (1870 feet). In other words it’s like climbing a medium sized fell in the English Lake District.
OK, you’ve got to get to Gokyo, but I’ll come to that in a moment. Let’s quickly remind ourselves of the view-the reason to be there.
Taking advantage of the proximity of Gokyo Village, which is really more a collection of trekkers lodges, setting off very early in the morning is the best time. In fact that’s what most people do and are “up and down” in time for a late breakfast at their lodge.
True, it means that you are climbing in darkness to begin with, but you really do want the best results for your efforts and that crisp, clear early morning light is what you’re after. This is when the Himalayas are at their best.
Later in the day it can get a bit hazy and occasionally Everest may be obscured by clouds.
How to get to Gokyo
In a word “walk”. That is unless you’re totally minted and can afford a private helicopter.
Gokyo lies high up in a side valley from the “bog standard” Everest Base Camp trail. Indeed after flying into Lukla from Kathmandu you’d follow this well worn, busy trail for a few days.
Including that all important acclimatisation (a minimum of two separate days) you’re looking at 8 days to reach Gokyo.
After climbing Gokyo Ri, you’ve got a few choices.
You could set off (after brekkie) from whence you came with your Gokyo Ri and Everest view box ticked. Or you could spend a little more time in the Gokyo area taking advantage of the rather good trekkers lodges and walk a little further up the valley as there’s more than one of these turquoise, glittering glacial lakes to see as well as closer views of another 8,000 metre peak- Cho Oyu.
You could head down, rejoin the main Everest Base Camp trail and then follow that to EBC and enjoy perhaps the even better Everest view from Kala Pattar.
What I’d say is that if you’re trekking in the Everest region and can’t bear the thought of NOT GOING TO EBC, then my recommendation would be the “back door” route to EBC.
To find our more about Everest treks visit our EVEREST trips section.
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