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Passes in and around Everest Region.

Everest Region (also known as Khumbu) is a sub region of Solukhumbu district. This Everest region is a famous region of the Himalayas for its spectacular mountain peaks which includes the world’s highest peak Mt. Everest (8,848 m), 4th highest peak Mt. Lhotse (8,516 m),5th highest peak Mt. Makalu (8,485 m), 6th highest peak Mt. Cho Oyu (8,201 m) and attractive peaks like Ama Dablam (6,812 m), Pumori (7,161 m), Nuptse (7,861 m), Lobuche (6,119 m) and many more. Everest Region is the roof of the world and the base camp of world’s highest peak is located in this region. Due to this reason, Everest Region is always full of trekkers and climbers during peak season. Sagarmatha National Park which is also enlisted in UNESCO world heritage site lies under Everest Region. There are many famous trek destination and routes in Everest Region. This region offers adventurous trek to famous destinations; Gokyo Lake and Everest Base Camp (EBC). Nepal government has granted permission for climbing and expedition of various peaks of the Everest region which have attracted more number of trekkers and climbers in the region. Lot of climbers visit Everest region to conquer the summit of Mt. Everest, Ama Dablam, Mera Peak, Lobuche Peak, Island Peak and vice versa.

Trekking in Everest Region offers a great experience of the Himalayas and the nature. One can have the best part of their life while trekking around the Everest Region. Everest Base Camp Trek (EBC) is a famous trek of this region and has been included in the bucket list of various trekkers and travellers. Many groups as well as solo travelers come to Everest Region annually. Trekkers can experience and witness the magnificent and thrilling side of the nature surrounded by snowcapped mountain peaks including various freshwater Lake, Glaciers, Ice fall and passes. Different routes are followed by trekkers according to their preference and destination. Some routes may require pre experience and some may require climbing equipment as per the season. Trekkers may also cross various mountain passes according to their itinerary and trek routes.

Passes in Everest

Mountain passes can be defined as the accessible route through a mountain range or over its ridge. A pass includes ascending of steep slopes up to the top which is the only flat ground in the area. Most of the high mountain passes are covered with snow and are challenging during winter. There are many passes in and around Everest Region. Some of the passes are inside Everest Region. Some passes are around the Everest Region; Trekkers cross these passes to get an access to Everest Region. Mostly, trekkers who seek more thrills and adventure include these mountain passes in their itinerary to make the trip more adventurous and marvelous.

Descriptions of some mountain passes in and around Everest Region are mentioned below:

  1. Lamjura LA pass.

Route: Classic Route to Everest Base Camp (EBC).
Altitude: 3,530 m.

This pass lies in Jiri to Everest Base Camp (EBC) route. This route is also famous as the classic route to Everest Base Camp (EBC). This route was taken by the 1st Everest summit climbers, Tenzing Norgay Sherpa and Edmund Hilary. It is the longest route to Everest Base Camp (EBC). Trekkers can fly Lukla from Kathmandu to shorten their trekking period. The classic route is for the die-hard trekkers who walk in to reach Khumbu the hard way.
Lamjura La pass is the highest point between Jiri and Namche Bazar. Lamjura LA pass lies somewhere between Sete and Junbesi village of the classic route to Everest Base Camp (EBC). The weather in Lamjura LA pass is always turbulent and unpredictable. This Lamjura LA pass is not surrounded with snow covered mountain peaks but you may often be rewarded with snow and frost during winter and beautifully blooming rhododendron forest during spring. Drastic weather change is normal on Lamjura LA pass and it may rain, hailstorm, snow or change into foggy day from a well sunny morning. Prepare accordingly. Trekkers walk in from Sete village, ascend to Goyom (3,300 m), cross the Lamjura LA pass and then descend to Junbesi village via Tragdobuk. Trekkers, who take flight from Kathmandu to Everest, fly over Lamjura LA pass which is noticeable from the flight too.

  1. Renjo LA pass.

Route: Three passes route to Everest Base Camp (EBC)
Altitude: 5,360 m.

Renjo LA pass is one of the three passes to Everest Base Camp (EBC). This Renjo LA pass lies on the north side of Namche Bazar. Renjo LA pass trek is one of the underrated and easiest treks among the three passes in Everest region of Nepal which takes you to the most remote but naturally rich village of the Sherpa. This trek route offers you remote and traditional lifestyle of the Himalayas tribe, Sherpa. Renjo LA pass takes you through various settlements of Sherpa and interact with their cross cultures.
Trekkers have to trek from Namche, reach Lungden via Thame and Thamo and cross Renjo LA pass to descend Namche via Machhermo and Dole. Crossing Renjo LA pass, trekkers reach the pristine valley of Gokyo Lake, one of the world’s highest freshwater system. Trekkers can head towards Everest Base Camp (EBC) via Cho LA pass after reaching Gokyo valley or can head towards Namche Bazar via Machhermo and Dole. Renjo LA pass is well covered with snow during winter which may be difficult to pass so it is always better to carry minor climbing equipment like cramp on, ice axe, ropes, etc. Panoramic Rolwaling and Everest mountain ranges can be admired from the Renjo LA pass.

  1. Cho LA pass.

Route: Three passes route to EBC and Everest Base Camp via Gokyo valley.
Altitude: 5,420 m.

Cho LA pass is another pass of the three passes which lies somewhere between Gokyo and Thangnak village. Cho LA pass trek offer one of the best walk in to the pristine valley of Gokyo and crossing the pass to reach the base camp of world’s highest peak, Everest Base Camp (EBC). During Cho LA pass trek, trekkers will also cross the largest glacier of Nepal, the Ngozumpa glacier which is formed by Mt. Cho Oyu. Cho LA pass trek is a combination of two destinations of Everest Region; Gokyo Lake and Everest Base Camp. So, this Cho LA pass trek is a challenging and a long trek to most of the trekkers but a worthy one for sure.
Trekkers usually start their trek from Namche, reach Gokyo Lake via Dole and Machhermo then cross the Cho LA pass to descend down to Lobuche via Thangnak and Dzonglha and lastly trek to Everest Base Camp and return the normal route to Lukla. During Cho LA pass trek, trekkers can witness the world’s top mountain peaks; highest peak Mt. Everest (8,848 m), 4th highest peak Mt. Lhotse (8,516 m), 5th highest peak Mt. Makalu (8,485 m) and 6th highest peak Mt. Cho Oyu (8,201 m).  Cho LA pass is more challenging during winter so it is advisable to carry ropes, ice axe, and cramp on, etc. during your journey.

  1. Kongma LA pass.

Route: Three Passes route to Everest Base Camp (EBC).
Altitude: 5,535 m.

Kongma LA pass is the hardest and most difficult pass among the three passes. Kongma LA pass is a long route to Everest Base Camp. Kongma LA pass lies somewhere between Lobuche village to the west and Chukhung village to the east, just above the Khumbu glacier opposite to Lobuche village. Kongma LA pass route is less visited route to Everest Base Camp (EBC). Kongma LA pass is the highest pass among the three passes with an altitude of 5,535 meter above sea level.
Kongma LA pass route is less crowded and done only by diehard trekkers who want to reach Everest Base Camp in more adventurous way. Usually, trekkers take normal route to Everest Base Camp up to Dingboche and from there they head towards Chukung. From Chukhung, trekkers cross the Kongma LA pass to reach Lobuche and head Everest Base Camp via Gorakhshep. Kongma LA pass is one of the most challenging pass of the Everest Region. Kongma LA pass is not a technical pass but simple climbing equipment may require as per the weather and snow level.

  1. Ampu Lapcha LA pass.

Route: Mera Peak, Island Peak.
Altitude: 5,845 m.

Ampu Lapcha LA pass is one of the most fascinating pass which is full of thrills and adventures. Ampu Lapcha LA pass is a challenging and technical pass of Everest Region. Ampu Lapcha pass lies somewhere between the upper Hongu and Chukkung valley. Ampu Lapcha pass is one of the highest passes of Everest Region standing at an elevation of 5,845 meter above sea level.
Ampu Lapcha pass is usually done with a combination of peak climbing either it may be Mera Peak, Island Peak or both. Mostly, climbers cross two passes in this journey; Mera LA pass and Ampu Lapcha LA Pass. Climbers trek up to Mera Peak base camp, reach the summit and then head towards Paach Pokhari via upper Hongu valley, cross the pass and descend down to Chukhung valley. Ampu Lapcha is a technical pass of Everest region which requires experience and climbing equipment such as ice axe, cramp on, ropes, etc. Ampu Lapcha LA pass trek route is very interesting and must do trek for those trekkers who love mountains and peak climbing.

  1. Tashi Lapcha LA pass.

Route: Namche via Rolwaling valley. (Tashi Lapcha pass trek)
Altitude: 5,755 m.

Tashi Lapcha LA pass is one of the most challenging passes of Rolwaling region which lies under Gaurishankar Conservation Area (GCA). Tashi Lapcha LA pass trek is an under rated and less crowded trek of Nepal. This Tashi Lapcha LA pass links Gaurishankar Conservation Area and Sagarmatha National Park. Tashi Lapcha LA trek offers you fascinating views of Rolwaling valley, Rolwaling ranges to Everest ranges which can be reached after crossing Tashi Lapcha LA pass. Tashi Lapcha LA pass lies somewhere between Tarkarding Glacier and Thame village.
Tashi Lapcha LA pass is very challenging and technical so it may require climbing equipment as per your time of trekking. Usually, trekkers start their trek from Dolakha in Gaurishankar area, trek up to Tsho Rolpa Lake, cross the Tashi Lapcha LA pass and descend Namche Bazar of Khumbu region via Thame village. Tashi Lapcha LA pass offers various scenic views, mountain peaks, Lakes and various adventures. To cross Tashi Lapcha LA pass, trekkers need good experience and should be in good physical and mental state.

  1. Zatrwa LA pass (Zatra LA).

Route: Mera Peak Climbing.
Altitude: 4,600 m.

Zatrwa LA (Zatra LA) pass is a pass of Everest region which lies somewhere between Lukla and Thule Kharka on the way to Mera Peak. This Zatrwa LA (Zatra LA) pass is included during the Mera Peak climbing. Climbers approach to Mera Peak via different routes. This Zatrwa La (Zatra LA) pass route is the fastest route to Mera Peak as trekkers need to cover a distance of more than 1600 meter in a day after flying to Lukla. Many climbers first trek to Mera peak, achieve its summit and then return via Zatrwa LA pass (Zatra LA) to shorten their trek period and reach Lukla for the flight.
Mera Peak is a famous climbing peak. A lot of climbers come to achieve the summit of Mera Peak. Only, few numbers of climbers take Zatrwa LA (Zatra LA) pass as this pass should be completed in a day covering more than 1500 meter which can’t be done by inexperienced climbers and this requires a strong physical condition.

  1. Nangpa LA pass.

Region: Nepal-China Border.
Altitude: 5,806 m.

Nangpa LA pass is a high mountain pass which lies between the border of Nepal and China. Nangpa LA pass joins the Nepal and Tibet side, a few kms west of Mt. Cho Oyu and few kms northwest of Mt. Everest. Nangpa LA pass trek is one of the most challenging high altitude treks. This Nangpa LA pass has been serving as a traditional trade and pilgrim routes which connects the Tibetan and Sherpa of Khumbu region since a long time.

Things to Know:

  1. Passes are mostly the challenging and difficult part of the trek due to various reasons.
  2. A pass may be well covered with snow during winter. Always carry simple climbing equipment such as cramp on, ice axe, ropes, etc., they may be useful during spring too.
  3. Always investigate and research about your destination before travelling.
  4. Always trek in a group if you are in remote trekking destinations.
  5. Hire local guides/porters; guide you the path, carry your stuffs and provide you plenty of information about the destination.
  6. Never rush on the trails. Always maintain your own pace and walk slowly.
  7. Drink plenty of water and fluids.
  8. Always protect your head, chest and ears from the wind.
  9. Always include acclimatization day in your itinerary which is required to balance your body temperature with the surroundings.
  10. Be aware of Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS) and take some Diamox with you while trekking in high altitudes.

By: Santosh Blon.

Global Holidays Adventure Pvt.Ltd