High Altitude Sickness (HAS)

High Altitude Sickness (HAS) is a phrase used to describe the health condition especially among trekkers when they reach a certain higher altitude. HAS is usually prevalent for those trekking in high Himalayan region beyond 2500m altitude.

When gaining altitude, body will need to adjust or acclimatize to low oxygen availability and decreasing air pressure. Failing to adapt to this change in pressure and oxygen can impact one’s health. The risk of HAS increases if you are at 2500m or higher. It takes anywhere between 12 hrs. to 24 hrs. to suffer from HAS.

Anyone is prone to suffer from HAS, no matter how fit, healthy or strong one is both mentally and physically or irrespective of one’s geographical origin.

Causes

The main cause of HAS depend on

  1. how quickly you move to a higher elevation,
  2. how high you go up,
  3. the altitude where you sleep,
  4. the amount of liquid consumption to avoid dehydration

Symptoms

The common symptoms of HAS are a combination of the following:

  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Fatigue and loss of energy
  • Shortness of breath
  • Problems with sleep
  • Loss of appetite
  • Inability to walk
  • Change in behavior
  • Decrease in body oxygen level

Prevention

The basic prevention measure to avoid HAS is proper acclimatization. You need to acclimatize with increasing height gain, climate and weather gradually as you go up higher altitude. Gaining altitude slowly and gradually is the best way to prevent HAS.

Secondly you have to monitor the symptoms of altitude sickness and treat early. If you happen to suffer from any of the symptoms, the best thing to do is to immediately go down to a lower elevation.

It is important that you follow the guidelines and advices provided by your trekking guide.

Based on our long experience, trekkers should move up slowly, monitor body’s responses and share your feeling and experiences with your experienced guide while on trek. Drinking lots of water, garlic soup, local herbs recommended by your guide etc are also some preventive strategies.

Care and Treatment

If you are trekking with Best Tour, you are in safe hands. Our guide closely monitors our clients behavior, appetite, body temperature. A separate record is kept of all our clients by our well qualified guide. This helps to determine the condition our clients are in. We also check oxygen level with the help of oximeter.

When going trekking in the Himalayas, Best Tour provides enough soup, energy bars and fruits. We also offer enough water to prevent dehydration and keep you warm. 

We also administer proper, prescribed medication if the situation gets worse. All our guides are trained in offering first aid, so they are experienced in treating HAS.

If trekkers condition takes turn for worse, we immediately conduct emergency rescue services from the mountains to bring them directly to place where well equipped hospitals are available

Recommendations

Walk Slowly

Listen and follow Guide’s instructions

Drink enough water

Consume sufficient amount of energy and carbohydrates

Drink plenty of soup

Take proper rest

Sleep well

Climb down to a lower elevation if you suffer from HAS

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Nepal Trekking tour

Nepal Trekking tour is a unique combination of trekking and cultural activities. It is designed to offer you both adventure and relaxation at the same time. This program offers relatively easier treks to nearby hills and valleys. Such treks do not go above an altitude of 4000m depending on the time, landscape and route. You will be guided by an experienced trekking guide.

The rest of the program focuses on relaxing light programs such as practicing yoga and meditation, visiting world heritage sties, sightseeing temple and monastery and learning about local culture and lifestyle.  We are offering following Nepal trekking tour packages:

If you are interested in other sites not mentioned above, then please contact us for further information

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Khopra Danda Trek without Guide

Khopra Danda trek is a community based trek. Adventure lovers often want to experience such remote and pristine trail independently where they have total freedom. Although Khopra danda trek without guide is a good idea to explore but it is not suitable for all trekking trails.

Khopra Danda trek or Khopra Ridge trek is a newly opened remote trekking trail and most of it passes through forested path inhabited by wild animals. The trail does not have adequate facility of lodges and rest points. Khopra Ridge trail is mainly used by cattle and sheep and does not carry proper signage with the result that trekkers often losing their way. So in terms of safety it is a must for all trekkers to take trained and professional guide. I personally do not recommend Khopra danda trek without guide.

The challenge of reaching Khayer Lake at an altitude of 4600m is daunting for trekkers. In its entirety you will come across three viewpoints, Muldai, Khopra Danda and Mulde Hill. The views of Fishtail, Annapurna, Dhaulagiri and Manaslu along the trek will melt your heart.

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Famous Hill Stations of Nepal

Hill stations have many things to offer from majestic views of Himalayan peaks, local culture to pristine nature. That is why I regularly visit famous hill stations of Nepal whether it is in winter or summer. Famous hill station in Nepal some hill stations require long days of travel or trekking while others are well connected by road.

Exploring famous Hill stations in Nepal, today is as easy as ever. There are facilities of vehicles in many places now making it comfortable and easy for travellers. The beauty and charm of hill stations still remain as alluring as before. Some of the famous Hill stations in Nepal not to be missed during your visit to Nepal have been listed below.

Chandragiri (2551m)

Chanragiri is tallest hill on the southwest of Kathmandu. It a great vantage point to see 180 degree view of snowcapped peaks from Mt. Everest and Annapurna to Langtang and Ganesh Himal ranges. It is just 14 km from Kathmandu.  A few minutes ride on a cable car takes you to the top of Chandragiri which features Bhaleshwar Mahadev temple along with children play park and a cafeteria.

How to get there?

Public transportation is available from Kathmandu to cable car station which takes about 45 minutes. Still travel by private car is best.

Kalinchowk (3842m)

Kalinchowk is famous for Kalichowk Bhagawati temple. Located in Dolakha district, Kalinchowk is snowbound during winter. Kuri village (3300m) near Kalinchowk is often regarded a mini Switzerland. Cable car ride is available from Kuri to the top of Kalinchowk. One can witness 180 degree views of majestic Himalayan peaks including Gauri Shankar. Kalinchowk is famous for local potatoes, hard cottage cheese and local spirit Tumba.

How to get there?

Though public transportation connects Kalinchowk with Kathmandu, it is best to take a 4 wheel jeep or ride a bike. It takes around 8 hrs to reach Kalinchowk. Basic guest houses are available for accommodation.

Nagarkot (2175m)

Located just 33 km northeast of Kathmandu, Nagarkot is the nearest and most popular hill station around Kathmandu Valley. Nagarkot is a fantastic viewpoint to see a wide Himalayan ranges including Everest, Langtang, Annapurna, Ganesh, Manaslu and Kanchejunga along with romantic sunrise and sunset views. There are plenty of hotels and lodges in Nagarkot from budget to high standards. Snowfall occasionally occurs in Nagarkot when the temperature is really low. We are offering following tours in Nagarkot:

How to get there?

Public buses and private vehicles are easily available to take you to Nagarkot from Kathmandu which is a ride of about one and half hrs.

Kakani (2030m)

Located in Nuwakot district, to reach Kakani one has to cover a distance of just 20km. Kakani is a famous hill station for viewing Himalayan peaks from Manaslu to Ganesh Himal and Langtang Lirung. Kakani do not see snowfalls in winter however it is a bit chilly in winter.

How to get there?

Public transportation are regularly available though you can also take private vehicle. Facility of basic hotels is available in Kakani.

Daman (2322m)

Daman is another popular hill station around Kathmandu Valley. It is located some 77km southwest of Kathmandu in Makwanpur district. There is a viewtower in Daman that is vantage point to see Himalayan panorama. Daman is the first hill station to get recognition after it connected Tribhuvan Highway, Nepal’s first highway. Daman regularly receives snowfall in winter. The place is full of good hotels.

How to get there?

Both public bus and private vehicle are available to go to Daman. It usually takes four hours to reach Daman from Kathmandu.

Bandipur (1030m)

Bandipur is a Newari town lying midway from Prithivi Highway at a distance of 140 km from Kathmandu. The town was once a commercial center connecting Kathmandu with Terai region. It is located at an elevation of 1030m on the Mahabharat range above Marshyangdi Valley. Bandipur is characteristic of Newari and Magar culture, Newari architecture, cobbled streets, medieval houses and temples. The captivating view of Himalayan peaks such as Manaslu, Lamjung, Annapurna, Dhaulagiri is another attraction of Bandipur. Plenty of excellent accommodations are on offer in Bandipur.

How to get there?

It takes 5 hours from Kathmandu to reach Bandipur on Prthivi Highway. Both public buses and private vehicles can be easily hired.   

Ghandruk (2012m)

Ghandruk is one of the popular villages in Annapurna trekking route. Inhabited by Magar and Gurung communities, Ghandruk is a viewpoint to watch stunning views of Annapurna, Macchapuchre and Hiunchuli. Ghandruk is surrounded by pristine forests of rhododendrons and pines and rarely sees snowfall in winter.

How to get there?

It is just a 3 hr drive from Pokhara followed by 30 minutes’ walk.

Jomsom (2743m)

Located on the banks of Kali Gandaki River, Jomsom is a medieval town inhabited by Thakali community. Originally called Dzong Sampa, which means new fort, Jomsom is the gateway to Muktinath.. It takes only 5 hrs from Jomsom to reach Muktinath. Jomsom is famous for Thakali culture and cuisine and magnificent views of Annapurna, Nilgiri and Dhaulaigiri peaks.

How to get there?

You can take a flight from Pokhara to Jomsom which takes about 20 minutes. Alternatively you can directly take a public bus from Kathmandu to Jomsom. Still nothing can beat the comfort and adventure of taking a Private 4 wheel drive.

Kanyam [tea garden]

Kanyam [tea garden] is situated in Ilam district, famous for its tea gardens. The chilly wind of the hill and the extensive green plots of tea spread as far as the horizon will capture your heart and mind. Don’t forget to try authentic tea of Nepal when you are in Kanyam. You can opt for basic guesthouses for accommodation.

How to get there?

Public buses and private vehicles are available to take you to Kanyam.

Jaljala (3090m)

Jaljala is a beautiful hill station situated in Thabang Village in remote Rolpa district. Once a hub for Maoist revolution, today Jaljala welcomes tourists in hordes. It is located 22 km from Libang, district headquarters of Rolpa. The trail to Jaljala offers you beautiful views of Sisne mountain.

How to get there?

Public transport is often not timely and reliable to reach Jaljala. Better option is to hire a 4 wheel drive. You can also directly fly to Nepalgunj from Kathmandu and then take a private jeep further. 

Bhedetar (1430m)

Located in Dharan, Bhedetar is a popular hill station in the east. It is at 17 km distance from Dharan.

How to get there?

Night and day public buses regularly leave Kathmandu for Dharan. Other option is to fly to Biratnagar and then take a private car to Bhedetar.

Palpa (1310m)

Palpa is a medieval kingdom ruled by Sen kings. The town of Palpa is inhabited and influenced by mercantile Newari traders. It is a base point to go on a hike to nearby Sri Nagar hill (1524m) from where one can witness a panorama of Himalayan ranges in the likes of Kanjiroba, Dhaulagiri and Annapurna. Palpa is famous for Nepali Dhaka cap and Karuwa (water vessel).

How to get there?

Public transportation, private vehicle as well as motorbikes are popular transport for accessing Palpa.

Dhampus (1650m)

Dhampus is a village situated nearby Pokhara at a distance of 20km. It is the most photographed place in Nepal which firmly attest to the beauty it possesses. The village is mostly inhabited by Gurung and Magar ethnic communities who follow their unique culture and lifestyle. Dhampus is a perfect viewpoint to capture Macchapuchre, Annapurna ranges and Lamjung Himal. 

How to get there?

30 min drive on a public bus or private vehicle to Phedi from Pokhara followed by 15 minutes steep uphill ride will reach you Dhampus. Or you can also trek for one and half hour from Phedi to Dhampus.

With so many places to choose from, you will have more than you can chew. I personally prefer going to Kalinchowk or Ghandruk than anywhere else. However your tastes might be different depending on what you like.

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