Adventures Nepal Travel Tips

Nepal Trekking Kit List: 22 essentials everyone should pack

October 13, 2018
Good quality rain jacket - nepal kit list

Gear selection is super important on any trek, but perhaps more so in the remote mountainous regions of Nepal, where the weather can change in an instant. We trekked to Everest Base Camp (EBC) and my absolute favourite place Gokyo Ri in November time, you can read all about it here. Prior to going I read a few blog posts and studied the kit list provided by our tour company Exodus (this is not a sponsored post), but I’ll be honest with you…I was TOTALLY under prepared.

From fibre gel to toilet roll and from day-packs to Nalgene bottles – this should be an eyeopener for anyone planning a trek in Nepal. Feel free to send me an email or leave a comment below if you have any questions or concerns.

Happy trekking!

 

nepal trekking kit list 22 essentials everyone must pack

  1. Vitamin C and multivitamins

It’s called the Khumbu Cough – bought on by low temperatures and high altitude; pretty much everyone in our group fell ill to it. To make matters worse, in the evening much of the socialising is done in the main room of the teahouse – this warm environment is a breeding ground for germs. Keep the dreaded cough at bay by bringing Vitamin C or multivitamins with you.

Himalayan Teahouse yak burner

The main room in a Himalayan Teahouse, where you’ll hang out in the evening

  1. Fibre tablets, chia seeds…just give me something

As you gain in altitude, you’ll notice vegetables diminishing from your plate. Meals are heavily carbohydrate based. Fried potatoes, stir fried noodles, noodle soup…I was craving a giant plate of broccoli! If you’re like me and usually pile on the greens, then I’d suggest taking some fibre tablets, chia seeds, Naked bars, prunes…anything to give your digestive system a helping hand.

Sherpa Food Himilayas - yak burger

A menu from one of the tea houses, notice the carb-heavy food

  1. Take plenty of snacks and chocolate bars

I bought a ton of snack and chocolate bars with us to Nepal, but you’ll be surprised how hungry you get! So take more than you think you’ll need. There is a small supermarket in the Thamel district of Kathmandu and if you’re doing the EBC route – you’ll find a few stores in Namche Bazaar, but the prices will be double what you pay at home.

I saved this Snickers bar for Everest Base Camp!I saved this Snickers bar for Everest Base Camp!

I saved this Snickers bar for Everest Base Camp!

  1. Waterproof boots with ankle support

I successfully traversed snow cover glaciers and rocky paths with my trusty lightweight North Face trekking shoes, but in hindsight I should at least had some ankle support. Plus my feet got cold and wet when the snow came through the fabric gauze. I’d recommend taking a solid pair of walking boots with ankle support, even better if they’re waterproof too.

  1. Neck Buff – the most versatile bit of kit

Neck buffs are such versatile things and should be an essential part of your kit list. Wear it when the wind or snow sets it, or merely as a face mask to protect you from breathing in the dried yak dirt on the tracks, which can cause lung infections.

Nepal kit list - essentials you need to take

Layers are crucial as the weather can change rapidly in the mountains

  1. Invest in merino underwear

Merino is an amazing technical fabric as it’s naturally sourced and feels soft against the skin. But the best part is it is naturally antimicrobial, meaning it doesn’t hold onto smells and germs. Great when you’re limited on the amount of luggage you can bring and washing you can do. Oh and perhaps avoid clothes washing as the temperature plummets or your clothes will freeze, like ours did!

  1. Did you know the cold drains batteries?

The cold will drain your batteries so bring extras! Head torch, camera etc. Most teahouses have electricity that you can pay for, but batteries will be harder to come by. One trick is to put your batteries in your sleeping bag at night time to keep them warm.

Inside a shop on EBC route Nepal

A small shop on the route to EBC, Nepal

  1. The essentials…toilet roll

Toilet rolls were not readily available in the tea houses and everyone had to bring their own. I’d recommend packing an extra in your bag as it’s pricey stuff in the mountains.

  1. Don’t bring a laptop (stupid me!)

There I was thinking I could blog in real time. Little did I know, my computer battery would run dry after 1 day (especially in the cold) and wifi was crazy expensive, so this ended up becoming a dead weight. Unless you have a good reason, leave your laptop at home.

  1. Gaiters and yak tracks

As the conditions worsen, gaiters and yak tracks may be essential. There’s nothing worse than waking up to soggy wet boots. These items can be expensive to purchase back at home, but I found some affordable ones in a shop in Namche Bazaar, just don’t expect them to last forever!

North Face trekking shoes, gaiters and yak tracks

Here’s my trusty North Face trekking shoes, gaiters and yak tracks

  1. Get a helping hand with walking poles

Walking at altitude is amazingly difficult; it’s hard to comprehend without experiencing the feeling yourself. The lack of oxygen in the air plays havoc with your legs and lungs! So invest in a set of walking poles to provide some extra support. These can be purchased quite cheaply in Thamel or Namche Bazaar. I ended up purchasing some second hand poles from a shop in Namche. On my return back down the mountain, I took them back to the store for the shopkeepers to resell 🙂

Shopping Streets of Namche Bazaar

Shopping Streets of Namche Bazaar – where you can find pretty much anything you are missing

  1. A good rain jacket!

Silly me took a cheap plastic rain jacket, that did little to offer protection from strong winds or even the rain! This protective shell could be a life saver when the conditions turn. I picked up a replica North Face (in the pic below) they’re everywhere in Nepal!

Good quality rain jacket - nepal kit list

A good quality rain jacket is crucial when trekking in the mountains

  1. Waterproof trousers, poncho etc.

The quality of the waterproof trousers and poncho is less important here, but having that added protective layer could be a life saver if conditions worsen. Ponchos are great for throwing over everything, including your rucksack.

Poncho - nepal kit list

A poncho is a great bit of kit when the weather sets in

  1. A big day pack

If Sherpas will be carrying your big bag between the teahouses, then you won’t have easy access to it. You will need to pack all your essentials in your day bag. Ensure this is large enough to fit your mid layer, rain jacket, rain pants, gloves, gaiters, yak tracks, snacks, up to 3 litres of water etc. The contents of your bag will change as the terrain does. Around 30 – 35 litres should suffice.

Pick the right day pack - nepal trekking list

Be sure to pick the right day pack for your Nepal trek, including your bagpipes!

  1. Trekking trousers (ladies, leggings are not acceptable)

Nepalese are religious and conservative people. A tight fitness legging is not really acceptable attire. Opt for a hard wearing synthetic trouser that’s quick drying.

  1. Lip balm with sun protection

The cold air, wind chill and strong sunlight turned my lips into a peeling mess. I can still remember how painful they were. Make sure you bring a lip balm with SPF (sun protection factor). Ones used for snow, alpine or water sports would add a great protective barrier.

Nepal Gokyo Ri view

The cold temperatures will cause havoc with your skin. This beautiful place is Gokyo Ri – the highlight of our trip!

  1. Consider water sanitation

Have a think about how you will be consuming water in the mountains. Be mindful that bottled water has to be carried to the teahouses by a Sherpa, and that this plastic waste must also be carried down. A Steripen or water purification tables are a trusty alternative. You will be able to purchase boiled water in the tea houses, but it’s always advisable to add a second layer of treatment.

  1. SO much hand sanitiser

You will get through this stuff like crazy! Don’t expect the luxury of soap in the toilets and it’s advisable to sanitise before every meal – you don’t want to get an upset tummy half way up the mountain!

Washing facilities in the Himalayas

Keeping your hands clean is key in the Himalayas – check out this colourful sink!

  1. Don’t be afraid of altitude medication

Before travelling to Nepal I decided against Diamox or any other altitude medication. I figured that I would listen to my body and stop when I needed to. But honestly our entire group were taking it just a few days into the trek. Read more about altitude medication in this post.

  1. Sleeping bag liner

A sleeping bag liner is great for adding extra warmth to your sleeping bag. Tip…take a Nalgene bottle, and fill it with the boiling water for sale at the teahouses. Pop it in your sleeping bag an hour before bed for a toasty nights sleep.

Avoid cotton clothing when hiking Himalayas

Avoid cotton clothing when hiking Himalayas, opt for synthetics. This is the view from the top f Namche Bazaar

  1. Avoid cotton clothing

When in the mountains avoid cotton clothing where possible. Cotton absorbs water and will take HOURS to dry. Instead opt for merino wool, polyester, nylon and other synthetic fabrics which are all quick drying.

  1. Plenty of layers

Layering is key when trekking as your temperature will fluctuate throughout the day. Opt for a three or more layering system – a tight fitting base layer (might not be needed during the day), a mid layer top, a fleece or puffer jacket and then an outer shell to protect from the wind and rain.

After the trek treat yourself with a refreshing Everest Beer

After the trek treat yourself with a refreshing Everest Beer

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Nepal Trekking Kit List: 22 essentials everyone should packnepal trekking kit list 22 essentials everyone must pack

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22 Comments

  • Reply Laura October 13, 2018 at 11:30 am

    Omg yes to the lip balm! I didn’t take any either and my lips cracked so badly they started bleeding. Hope you had an amazing time.

  • Reply Jen October 14, 2018 at 12:48 am

    This is a great packing list for any big hike! I’m going on my first overnight hike alone next month and am taking serious notes, thank you!

    • Reply nickyherbert October 15, 2018 at 5:40 am

      Hiking alone! Make sure you’re prepared and people know your whereabouts. Have fun!

  • Reply Nicky October 14, 2018 at 10:41 am

    This is a great, informative post! I think a lot of these are great suggestions for general trips (especially hiking!) as well as in Nepal, so I’ll definitely be checking a few out! (I’m already a huge fan of buffs!)

    • Reply nickyherbert October 15, 2018 at 5:38 am

      Thats great to hear Nicky!

  • Reply Stephanie Rumore October 31, 2018 at 7:27 am

    What an incredible experience! The most rewarding travel experiences are always the ones that require the most packing unfortunately but by the look of your pics it was absolutely worth it ! I’ve never even heard of (let alone seen a photo of) Gokyo Ri and you’ve given me major inspo!

  • Reply Kitiara Pascoe October 31, 2018 at 9:13 am

    I really want to do some long hikes like this so thanks for the tips, I think they can probably be applied to tons of places! It’s so easy to forget stuff like toilet roll and lip balm and silk liners are a recent discovery for me and are amazing! Huh…I really need to look into booking a trip to Nepal now!

    • Reply nickyherbert November 7, 2018 at 5:47 am

      You won’t regret it! It’s like stepping back in time. An amazing loving to visit.

  • Reply Melissa October 31, 2018 at 9:16 am

    So many great suggestions in this post ( Vitamin C tablets – who’dve thought it) – such a pleasure to read this super informative (even given me some items to think about for other hikes) loved the candour (breathing in “yak dirt” LOL)

  • Reply Usha October 31, 2018 at 9:17 am

    That is an awesome list there. I am planning to hike inUttarakhand in northern India. This list will be great help. Specially the merino underwear point as washing and hygiene is definitely an issue in colder regions.

    • Reply nickyherbert November 7, 2018 at 5:47 am

      That’s great! Enjoy your hike.

  • Reply Corina October 31, 2018 at 1:34 pm

    the problem with Nepal and it’s gear is simple, when you go there you might say, that you will buy all the stuff you NEED there, which is a good choice, but then you’re in the shops in Khatmando and you just cannot stop shopping haha, so to have actually a guide like this and stick to it is quite useful.

  • Reply Ketki October 31, 2018 at 3:52 pm

    That’s such a comprehensive list and absolutely on point. I had never considered your tip about wearing synthetics as against cotton for warmth. Amazing tips and gorgeous photos.

  • Reply Emma October 31, 2018 at 6:39 pm

    Great points and photos that took me back to my time in Nepal! I wish I had been able to read this before I left. Handy info – vit c , toilet roll, hand sanitiser and water sanitisation are musts !!! Love how you’ve laid out the post too, super easy to follow

    • Reply nickyherbert November 7, 2018 at 5:45 am

      Thank you for your kind comments 🙂 Always nice to hear the posts are easy to read and follow – thank you !

  • Reply Helen October 31, 2018 at 9:49 pm

    Great list and I love how you told the story of your trek! I would never have thought to bring some of the things on this list!

    • Reply nickyherbert November 7, 2018 at 5:45 am

      Great! Glad i opened your mind to some of the more obscure things to bring !

  • Reply Joy Generoso November 1, 2018 at 6:31 am

    Omg, I’m not sure if I can endure trekking in Nepal. I only do short hikes from time to time. Good to know some tips and list of important essentials to bring.

  • Reply Mohana and Aninda November 1, 2018 at 7:37 am

    This is such a helpful list! Chocolates, multivitamins, and fibres are a must. We are going on our first trek in Sikkim next year and I’ll keep this post bookmarked.

    • Reply nickyherbert November 7, 2018 at 5:44 am

      Totally! I think this list is useful for the majority of hikes! Enjoy

  • Reply Stephanie November 1, 2018 at 9:30 am

    I think I stared at your cover photo for a good 10 seconds — makes me want to go to Nepal but then again, I am not much of a hiker. Maybe one day! Sounds like the perfect packing list for a hiking trip though!

    • Reply nickyherbert November 7, 2018 at 5:43 am

      There are so many things to do in Nepal other than hiking, dont let that put you off. My friend is travelling through the country as we speak on a motorbike!

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