Having the right (and not too much) equipment is critical to enjoying your trek. Below we’ve put together some
guidelines on clothing and other equipment that many people find useful when trekking in the Himalaya.
Clothing & Shoes
Weather changes abruptly in the mountains; it can be hot in the morning, and later in the day you can be trekking
in a cold rain or snow. Because of this variation, layers are usually the best option when it comes to clothing.
It is useful to have one layer that is at least water-resistant if not waterproof. Good rain gear is recommended at any
time of the year but especially if you are trekking in May-June. During this pre-monsoon period, it is useful to have an
umbrella as well as good rain gear or at a minimum a rain poncho. Sample layers: short-sleeve t-shirt, long-sleeve shirt,
fleece, warm jacket, rain/wind layer. Convertible pants (that zip off into shorts) are nice but not necessary,
also tights or long underwear for higher elevations may make your nights and early mornings more comfortable.
Clothes made with materials that dry quickly are preferable. If you are going above 4000 m,
or trekking in the winter then gloves and a warm hat are highly recommended.
Good shoes are a must. Waterproof hiking boots are preferable. Just make sure you have sufficiently
broken in your new boots before heading off on a trek, or you may be in for a painful foot full of blisters.
Trekking poles/Walking sticks
Another piece of gear many people find useful is a walking stick or trekking poles. These are especially handy
in wet conditions where the trail may be slippery. Cheap Chinese made trekking poles can be found at many
stores around Thamel in Kathmandu. These poles are usually sufficient for a trek or two but tend to wear out quickly.
Though some may find the blankets from the lodge are sufficient, a sleeping bag is more sanitary and makes for a better rest at night and a more comfortable trek overall.
A refillable water bottle is also recommended. While bottled water is available for purchase at most lodges,
these disposable bottles are a huge burden on the environment. Lodges will provide drinkable boiled water
for a fee. Many people also prefer to bring their own filters and water treatment system.
Remember: no matter how pristine the mountain stream looks, don’t drink it without treating the water!
The sun is very intense at high altitudes, bring sun block (preferably a water/sweat proof one), sunglasses, and chap stick or lip balm (with spf).
A head lamp or at least a flashlight / torch is highly recommended. This can help with early morning ascents, unexpectedly late arrivals, power outages in the lodge, or nighttime trips to the toilet (often an outhouse).
While not necessary if you would like to carry some snacks to eat along the trail you will find both the prices
and selection better if you bring them from Kathmandu or Pokhara. Of course, the downside is you will need to carry
them if you want to have them accessible to you while you hike.