What equipment do you need to climb Mount Everest?
When you have thought of climbing Mount Everest, only thought of climbing Everest won't suffice. Climbing the highest peak in the world takes a lot of courage and months of practice before conquering the summit. It’s hard to do it on your own and near to impossible without proper gears. It is a pretty easy trek till the base camp as every age group can be seen reaching the Everest Base Camp. But the trail gets strenuous as we move further up and requires specialized gears from clothing to tools and supplies. It shall be easy to pick the gears if you are going on a guided expedition but if you plan to do the climb on your own, you should have the proper information about the climate up there and equipment required to climb the Everest. And even after the purchase of all the gears, you should double-check them to ensure they won’t deceive during the climb. One’s physical fitness would sure help to climb Everest but not with improper gears. Following gears should be strictly carried with oneself during the Everest climb.
1.Shoes and shocks:
Shoes are the most important gears while climbing Everest. It’s not that every shoe will work as this expedition will require special shoes with spikes for having grip while walking in the snow. The boots should be light-weight and should resist water to some extent. Plastic lined climbing boots are required as they give more room to the feet and reduce the risk of frostbite. There is a maximum chance that these boots will get cold while walking on the snow. Therefore, heating pads and wires are required to keep the boots warm. If the boots are not water-resistant, you might as well need insulated overboots. Along with the boots, you will require several pairs of warm socks to keep your feet warm. Thick socks shall help you keep your feet warm but you will hardly get a chance to wash them. So, it is better to keep several pairs of trekking socks, woolen socks, and liner socks.
Proper clothing will keep you warm and layering is important in choosing clothes. As you ascend, you will witness the variation in the climate ranging from the mild temperature to extremely cold temperature. Depending upon the elevation and the weather, you will need different sets of clothes. While commencing the trek, the temperature is slightly warmer. As you ascend the mountains, the chilly winds decrease the temperature up to minus degrees Celsius. Besides, while trekking, the clothes should be lighter and you should wear warm clothes during the morning and night. A light-weight synthetic zip-up jacket, a down jacket and a shell jacket with a hood should suffice the extreme climate of Everest. As the chilly wind blows in the higher elevation, it will be better if your clothes are wind-proof. Synthetic insulated pants, down pants and shell pants, are a must and all of these should be wind-proof with full-separating side zippers. Head is the major part to be protected from the unprecedented cold in the Everest region. A woolen hat is a must and both light-weight and heavy-weight balaclava should help you find the extreme cold. A baseball cap will protect you from the sunlight during day time while synthetic bandanas will protect your neck. Besides all these, you will need different pairs of gloves as well for different purposes, light synthetic gloves, expedition-weight fleece gloves, waterproof gloves, and expedition-weight mitts. Also, bring your towels with you as the walk is going to be sweaty. You will feel the need for towels every now and then.
As you leave the base camp to complete your climb to Everest, you will find a dire need of the climbing tools. Step-in glacier crampons should be clipped to your boots. You should have spare climbers in case the one you’ve got gets damaged. An alpine climbing harness which should fit all of your clothes is required. Along with the harness, three locking and three stationary carabines, one left and one right ascender, a belay device and prussiks or a long flexible perlon rope is required. At some places, the climb will get tricky and you will require an ice ax with a leash designed for glacier axes. This will help you cross the Lhotse face and climb to the summit. The length of the ice ax should be determined by your height. If you are between 5 feet 5 inches to 6 feet 2 inches tall, the ax should be at least 65 centimeters or about 26 inches long. Climbing tools will include glacier rope as well and the instructions to handle these climbing tools is a must. It is not very easy to handle these tools. You will get the lesson to use these tools if you are planning a guided expedition. But if you are planning an unguided expedition, we will recommend you to practice using these climbing tools and be a proficient one before vying for the Everest. Two trekking poles are an inevitable tool while climbing. A light-weight climbing helmet is available in the market. The helmet must comfortably fit your head and should not be a problem while removing it.
As the temperature can fall below 0-degree Celsius, it is better to bring good quality sleeping bags with you which can withstand these extremely cold conditions. Two sleeping bags with the rated temperature at least minus 20 degrees Celsius and minus 40 degrees Celsius is recommended along with two self-inflating and one thermal pad per camp. As you will have to camp at several places, multiple tents are required. A larger tent for the Base Camp while the smaller, lighter and high-quality tents are preferred for higher elevations. You will rest your belongings at the base camp and take only what is necessary. A compass will help you find the direction and it will be better to have an altimeter to keep the tabs of altitude. While camping required nails and other tent supplies should be with you. Titanium burners should be carried which should help you cook. You better ensure you have two of them, in case one does not work. You will need pots with lids, mugs, a thermos, a spoon and a knife to prepare and eat the food. Matches or lighters should be carried abundantly and they should be kept warm as well. Chemical water purifier should help you drink more pure water and bringing plastic water bottles will help in case of emergencies. If possible, bring oxygen cylinders as well. A duffle-bag should carry all the climbing gears.
These equipment are for your purpose of collecting memories. Summiting the world’s highest peak is about boasting among friends. Therefore, a good quality camera is a must. With cameras, you should bring Lithium batteries as they are better for longer life at higher elevations. The power bank should be Lithium batteries powered as well. The headlamp is another additional equipment which shall come handy during difficult times of the journey. A GPS would be an upgrade to compass.
Along with the climbing and safety tools, you will need to protect your skin as well. For this, you will require sun-block cream for your skin. Alongside this, you will need lip balm and a moisturizer. Glacier glasses are a must and these glasses must offer full coverage around both eyes and across the nose. As the climate gets adverse further up, you will need high-quality goggles for protection from the sun and wind. The nose is where most of the heat is lost from, so a nose guard is recommended even though they are optional. A small first-aid kit should be with you which should include first-aid tape, band-aids, antiseptic wipes, electrolytes, etc.
7.Medications and comforts:
It is always better to carry medicines like Metronidazole, Diamox, Z-paks, Cipro, Paracetamol, Antacid, etc during the trek as small problems can prove to hinder your journey. One should always be on the safe side and enjoy the journey without facing many woes. These medications you carry should take care of your gastrointestinal problems, deal with altitude sickness and should be able to cure some headaches. Also, high up in the mountains, you might feel lethargic so the electrolytes should keep you hydrated. In addition to these, you can bring Glucose to supply your energy during the trek. Besides, you can bring additional items which are soothing for you. This might include playing cards, music players, board games, reading tablets, etc. there are some home-made solutions to the altitude problems. It is better to bring them with you. Some other foods can also be brought and if you are on a guided journey, it will be better for you to ask the tour guide about food-related queries before bringing them straight away.
For a successful climb, proper gears are inevitable and with these aforementioned gears, your Everest climb should be a success.