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