Gokyo Trek – Dragnag – Gokyo -DAY 12

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Day 12: Dragnag – Gokyo (5/16)

Trip Duration: 3 hours

Elevation at Dragnag/Thagnak: 4,700 meters ( 15,420 feet)

Elevation at Gokyo: 4,750 meters (15,584 feet)

Elevation Gain: 50 meters (164 feet)

Distance: 3.6 km (2.2 miles)

With clear skies and stellar mountain views in the distance we began our trek for the day.

Leaving our teahouse Chola Pass Resort in Dragnag
Trail Map of our trek for the day from Dragnag to Gokyo (Fatmap.com)
Friendly yak wishing us a safe journey

Today’s trek provided some of the most picturesque views and landscapes we have ever seen. It is a shorter trek compared to all previous days but this allowed us to take it slowly appreciate it that much more.

It began with an uphill climb towards one of Nepal’s largest glaciers – Ngozumpa Glacier.

Wow! Stunning views of Ngozumpa Glacier
Check out the ice cave and lake along the glacier
The glacier is surreal

We traversed across part of the Ngozumpa Glacier, an icy 36 km (22 mile) long glacier below the slopes of Cho Oyu (meaning Turquoise Goddess” in Tibetan culture) Peak, the sixth-highest mountain in the world at 8,188 m (26,863 ft). Passing through the moraines (glacier debris) of Ngozumpa Glacier was astounding. We sat at the ridge of the wide valley and snapped many photos.

The views along this route are not to be missed. As mentioned in our earlier posts. We had originally planned on taking the classic EBC route which would have started in Lukla and traveling through Phakding / Namche / Tengboche / Dingboche / Lobuche / Gorak Shep / Everest Base Camp and then returning along the same route albeit it at a much quicker pass. We later opted to extend our route and take a detour from Everest Base Camp and visit Gokyo via the Chola Pass. The views from the prior day and today have been astounding and we can’t imagine not taking this route.

Himalayas 101: Taking the EBC to Gokyo via the Cho La Pass should be added to every EBC itinerary.

We can’t recommend enough adding this route to your journey. 1000% worth it! It adds a few more days but you return a different route and see much more of the Himalayas.

One of the most gorgeous views we have ever seen
The sun beating off the glacier made Kurt a little warm
The glacier was dreamlike, but it was time to trek on

We continued along the path and headed up a steep climb through rocky terrain before arriving to the first of the majestic lake, Dudh Pokhari (a.k.a. Gokyo Cho). Dudh Pokhari, meaning milky lake, is situated at 4,560 m (14,960 ft) and is one of the most amazing lakes in the world.

Enjoy our short video of our Day 12 trek to Gokyo.

You can see a glimpse of the beautiful lake of Dudh Pokhari (Gokyo Cho) from the path
Standing in front of the magnificent Dudh Pokhari lake
Enjoying the view of snowcapped Machermo 6,017 m (19,742 ft) off to the left

From this viewpoint we were able to see Gokyo village settled at the foot of the valley. We were excited to check-in to our tea house and explore the surrounding area and gorgeous lake the rest of the day.

Gokyo village

After checking in, we took a long walk around the full circumference of the lake with some friends we caught up with from earlier on the trek. It’s nice walk and offers many more stunning views as shown in the pictures below:

We spent some time around the lake with some friends we met several days ago and enjoyed the scenic lake
Gokyo Ri, the famous summit we will be conquering the next morning

Accommodation

We stayed at our sherpa’s (Govinda) uncle’s teahouse, Gokyo Resort. The owner was one the kindest people we have met and we really enjoyed our stay. Check out the insane view from outside our bedroom window.

Hard to beat this bedroom view
Our European friends from the Czech Republic, our lifelong friend and sherpa Govinda, and his brother (taking the picture). One of the men from the Czech Republic is over 60 years old and has done the trek several times before.
The owner greeting us

The next morning will be a rough but exciting one, we will be doing a sunrise trek up to Gokyo Ri for astounding views.

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