Dingboche (4410m) – Dughla (4620m)
We set off from Dingboche and started the gradual ascent to Dughla via the undulating trail. Our pace was fairly slow due to the altitude and ever decreasing oxygen in the air. We were motivated on by views of the Dughla glacial lake in the distance.
Upon our arrival in Dughla we had lunch before venturing off to get a better view of the lake. This turned out to be a bit of a mistake, triggering an altitude headache in my boyfriend. It’s recommended you rest after any increase in altitude, so the extra exertion may have tipped the balance. NThankfully in the evening he started to feel better.
Dughla (4620m) – Lobuche (4940m) – Dingboche (4410m)
Unfortunately at this stage my boyfriend was really starting to struggle with the altitude. Despite popping some Diamox he still had a mild headache. We tentatively started our ascent to Lobuche but ultimately turned around and descended back to Dughla.
As his headache persisted during our lunch at Dughla we decided to descend further still to Dingboche. We returned to Moonlight Lodge where the owner cheered us up with his contagious smile and some complimentary popcorn. We went to sleep hopeful to try again the following day.
Dingboche (4410m) – Lobuche (4940m)
We left the tea house cheered on by the owner and his wife, who were incredibly happy to see we weren’t giving up.
Tragically while walking from Dughla to Lobuche we witnessed a trekking porter lose his life while carrying packs up a steep ascent. As we arrived the other Sherpas were placing his body into a sleeping bag. A truly harrowing reminder of how dangerous the area can be. (Anyone who is planning to hire a porter please please please make sure they are not carrying too much).
Upon arriving in Lobuche I started to feel my first effects of altitude. For the initial hour in the guesthouse catching my breath was difficult and it became a bit unnerving. Thankfully it resolved quickly and my boyfriend was doing better too. All ready to reach base camp the following day!
Next post: Day 11 (Lobuche – EBC – Gorak Shep)
Learn more about Altitude Sickness here: