Kala Patthar | Best Mount Everest View Point

By Glorious Himalaya on December 2, 2022 in Travel Tips

Kala Patthar is the highest elevation you will reach during your Everest Base Camp Trek. At 5643m, the viewpoint provides the best Mount Everest view, which is why it is a vital attraction place.

Kala Patthar is a famous ridge or viewpoint on the south side of Pumori in the Nepalese Himalayas. This viewpoint is prevalent among trekkers, mainly because the majestic views of mountains and hills are clear from this point of view. Furthermore, trekkers often visit Kala Patthar at dusk and dawn to see the stunning sunrise and sunset of the trek. Kala Patthar provides the most transparent view of Mount Everest, which is even more majestic at sunrise when the golden crown rises above the ridge.

This blog contains important information about Kala Patthar, including its location, geographical terrain, history, and origin. So let’s get into it.

Best Time for Kala Patthar Summit

Hiking to Kala Patthar is one of the everyday activities trekkers engage in during their Everest Base Camp Trek. While visiting Kala Patthar is fun and challenging, it is essential to consider the best season or time to trek towards the summit. The two most ideal seasons you can travel to the Kala Patthar Summit are:

Spring season

One of the ideal times for trekking towards the Kala Patthar is the Spring season. The spring season begins in March and ends in May. During this season, the weather is stable, and the temperature is mild, perfect for trekkers in the Khumbu region. The weather is always clear, and the views of the skies and mountains from the summit are majestic. During your trek to the Kala Patthar, you will be accompanied by various flowers blooming through the trek.

Autumn Season

Another amazing season that you can trek towards the Kala Patthar is Autumn. Autumn season starts in September, which is just after the end of monsoon season so during the early days, the region still gets slight rainfall. However, as the days progress, the rainfall stops, and the weather and climate become stunning. Some trekkers even believe that the view from Kala Patthar is even better in the Autumn than in the Spring season.

Geographic Location and Terrain:

Kala Patthar is the southern point of Mt Pumori in the Mahalangur Himalayan Range. This is the highest point during your Everest Base Camp trek, at an elevation of over 5000m. Despite being at such a height, knowing that Kala Patthar is not a mountain but a ridge or viewpoint is essential. The main factor that makes this ridge so popular is the chance to see Mount Everest very clearly. Furthermore, you can also view other mountains from here, like Lhotse, Nuptse, Changtse, and Ama Dablam.

The geographical terrain near the Kala Patthar is very loose and uneven. So, it is wise for the trekkers to pick up some trekking poles and sticks to maintain their balance during their trek. In the last phase of your Kala Patthar, it is wise to be careful and climb the ridge slowly to avoid slipping and becoming injured.

Origin of the name “Kala Patthar”:

One of the most amazing facts about the name Kala Patthar is that it doesn’t come from local Nepali, another regional language, or the Tibetian language. This name comes from the Hindi or Indian language, which means Black Stone. There is not much information on who the originator of the name was, but trekkers often find shiny black stones at the top of the ridge. Hence, this might be why the ridge was named Kala Patthar.

How to get to Kala Patthar?

Before planning your visit to Kala Patthar, it is essential to know how many ways you can visit it. There are two main ways to reach Kala Patthar: the trek via the Everest Base Camp and a helicopter tour via Kathmandu or Lukla. Here are some of the details on the route.

  1. Helicopter ride through Lukla or Kathmandu: The helicopter tours are generally for people who have limited time. They can also be taken as a luxurious venture. These aerial tours typically begin in the early morning and are concluded by noon. The flight from Kathmandu commences by passing through the green hills towards the thrilling airstrip of Lukla. The helicopter stops for a short break at Lukla, mainly to refuel, and heads towards Kala Patthar. Famous settlements like  Pangboche, Dingboche, and Tengboche can be seen from the chopper. The estimated cost of the flight is roughly 1000 USD, with a capacity of 5 passengers on board.
  2. Trekking through the EBC route: The Everest Base Camp trail is the most preferable way to reach Kala Patthar. Many people visit the landmark on their way to the base camp. The trek usually starts by taking a flight to Lukla from Kathmandu. After Lukla, you go on a long trek through Namche Bazaar, Tengboche, Dingboche, and Pangboche, eventually reaching Gorakshep, it is a small settlement on the edge of a frozen lakebed covered with sand. The steep ascent towards Kala Patthar usually takes 1.5 to 2 hours from Gorakshep. Before arriving at the exact location, you must spend five to ten minutes scrambling over boulders marked with prayer flags. If the attempt is made from Lobuche, it will take 2 to 3 hours.

What are the major attractions at Kala Patthar?

Kala Patthar is famous for its 360-degree panoramic view of the Great Himalayas. The main peaks observed from the summit are mentioned below:

Above 8000mAbove 7000mAbove 6000m
Everest(8,848m),
Lhotse(8,156m)
Nuptse(7,861m), Changtse(7,583m), Pumori(7,161m)Ama Dablam, Chumbu
Thamserku, KangtegaTaboche and Lobuche

The breathtaking sunrise at Kala Patthar is one of the exceptional views of the Himalayas. It is well worth the exhausting days of trekking on the EBC trail. As the sun rises over the Khumbu region, the warm sun’s rays gradually hit the back of the tallest mountains. The trekkers who have ventured to the landmark describe it as the most breathtaking sunrise of their lives, experienced at the pinnacle of the world.

There is a high chance of observing the view at sunrise as there are no weather constraints. However, sunset is a different story. The disturbances in weather and the formation of clouds result in low visibility during most evenings. If one is lucky enough, the setting sun forms a pinkish-yellow alpenglow on the peaks that is strikingly vibrant to the eye.

In short, the best time to see the beautiful Himalayas is early morning. The journey may be chilling and unfriendly, but the view at the top makes it well worth the effort.

What is the best time to trek to Kala Patthar?

The summit’s high altitude and proximity to the Himalayas cause unpredictable weather. The best time for trekking to Kala Patthar is from March to May and from September to December.. These months feature warm temperatures, good visibility, and generally stable weather with little precipitation. The skies are clear and transparent, and the temperature is bearable, ensuring the best view of the mountains.

Why is Kala Patthar considered Everest’s best viewpoint?

The close-up triangular mastiff of Everest, while being the most accessible, is the main reason behind the popularity of the Kala Patthar summit. It is the highest altitude that trekkers can reach without a climbing permit. Veteran trekkers describe the view from the summit as making you feel like you’re so close to Everest that you could reach out and touch it.

Another massive contender for the mesmerizing view of Everest is from Gokyo-Ri. The four tallest mountains (Everest, Makalu, Cho Oyu, and Lhotse) can be seen from the 5,375m peak. The peak is a tough climb as the terrain is very steep, and the altitude is scary. However, if we solely look at the view of Everest, Gokyo-Ri may stand after Kala Patthar.

Cho-La is also a top-tier Everest viewpoint. It is a summit situated at 5450m above sea level. Some local trekkers deem it to be the best view, but the sheer mountain climbing skills needed to reach this pass may put it behind Kala Patthar.

In conclusion, there is no better place to get a much clearer and broader view of Mount Everest than Kala Patthar. It is less challenging than other viewpoints of Everest, and the sight is breathtaking.

Is Altitude Sickness a significant concern at Kala Patthar?

Altitude Sickness, or Acute mountain sickness (AMS), affects the body when it is in a high-altitude environment. AMS is common at high altitudes, usually above 2,440 meters. It is a common problem for hikers with health problems. It’s important to acclimatize to reduce the chance of getting altitude sickness.

Since Kala Patthar is at a height of 5,643m, the risk of altitude sickness is high. It is very close to an extremely high altitude and has less than 50% oxygen content. You must, therefore, acclimatize at a lower altitude. It will be best to stay in Namche Bazaar for at least three days because ascending to a higher altitude so quickly will be dangerous. Namche Bazaar is close to an elevation of 3,400 meters. After that, you should stay at least two nights in Dingboche, located at an elevation of 4,260 m. Your time in Dingboche will ensure you can adapt your attitude to a higher altitude.

Conclusion

Hence, Kala Patthar is one of the important places of attraction that trekkers enjoy during their Everest Base Camp Trek. The far and broad ridge at an elevation of over 5000m gives majestic views of the surrounding mountains like Everest, Nuptse, Lhotse, Ama Dablam, etc. Furthermore, seeing Mount Everest from so close and so clearly is an opportunity you don’t want to miss.

Often, trekkers reach Kala Patthar during any normal Everest Base Camp Trek. If they are not able to trek or spend many days there, they can book a helicopter tour from Lukla or Kathmandu. If you are also thinking of visiting Kala Patthar, please book your trek or tour with GloriousHimalaya.

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