EBC – Mt Everest Base Camp
Most people will arrive here from Gorak Shep, the last set of guesthouses before EBC. If you’re in top shape, you could easily do it from Lobuche as well and skip the night at Gorak Shep (though you’d also miss the view from Kala Patthar) . If you feel relatively good by the time you get to Gorak Shep (so, no problems with acclimatization or muscle problems) this should be a three hour walk or less. Leave north from the row of teahouses in Gorak Shep and you’ll see a sign point towards EBC. Though the trail is rough in a few places from here, it is pretty easy to follow all the way to the edge of the Khumbu icefall.
Three things to note:
1. The big rock painted with “Everest Base Camp – 5366m” is not itself the location of base camp! The trail isn’t always terribly clear from here, but there is a faint path that runs to the actual EBC location further up the Khumbu glacier. This isn’t included in that three hour estimate above, so if you’re planning to wander around on the glacier for a while make sure to leave some extra time to get back on the trail and into Gorak Shep before nightfall.
2. If you visit EBC during the best trekking season (March to mid-May or September to mid-November) you will likely miss the ideal window to see expeditions actually climbing Everest! Mid to late May tends to offer the best windows for a summit attempt, but occasionally can also see the start of the monsoon season. Keep this in mind when planning your trip, and decide how important it is to you to be in the valley when there are expeditions actually summiting.
3. The Pyramid. You may notice on your Everest trekking map a place simply marked as ‘Pyramid’ between Gorak Shep and EBC. This is a scientific research station and is on the face of it not all that exciting. If you want to hang around Gorak Shep for an extra day you might head over here and climb the hill behind the Pyramid to see what the views are like. Otherwise, don’t spend too much time thinking about it.