Himalaya Q&A with trekking guru, Lou Day

Our Himalayan trekking guru, Lou Day had a great response to her Facebook Q&A session recently. Loads of Peregrine fans jumped on to ask their burning questions. 

Here's a summary of what was discussed. If you have any further questions for Lou, just head to Twitter or Facebook to keep the conversation going.

Are vegetarians and coeliacs catered for on the group trips? Are gluten free meals readily available, and do the locals understand the need for it to be truly gluten free?

@Diane One of the main reasons we don't include all meals is so you can buy your own from the lodges we use along the trail. This gives you more choice as the lodges all have extensive menus with both western and local style cuisine - for example toast and eggs or porridge in morning; soups, pasta noodles or rice for lunches and dinner. I also tend to go vegetarian in this part of the world and have never had an issue. 

‎@Sue O Connor Yes we do have a lot of trekkers with specific dietary requests coming on trek. As long as you let us know when you book we can make sure we let the lodges know of your gluten free requirements. 

If I have only three days what are the MUST SEE place/ things to do?

‎@Irene Wow, three days isn't much. I would spend a full day in downtown Thamel and also out in the older parts of Kathmandu exploring. You could then perhaps do a couple of days out in Pokhara, the gateway to the Annapurnas, to get a closer to those amazing peaks.

Other then trekking, what else is there to do/see on the way to the Himalayas?

@Sarah Alexander While it would be a shame to not trek when going to Nepal, there is still loads to see and do. Visit Chitwan National Park to do an elephant safari, see the Black Rhino and perhaps spot a tiger or just get lost exploring the maze of alleyways in downtown Thamel.

What is the best and cheapest way to experience one of these awesome adventures?

@Kelly Foreman We have a great special at the moment which offers 10% off all Peregrine treks booked up until the end of July, departing before the end of December.  

So I would suggest making the most of that. Once you get to Nepal it's pretty cheap - I would budget about A$35 per day for food, then you really aren't spending much at all. Athough I love shopping for all my new trek gear in Thamel. 

How stiff do the soles of your hiking boots need to be for the trip to Everest Base Camp & Gokyo Lakes? I used my Keen boots on the stairs in Annapurna but am guessing that things get a little more rocky up Everest way!

‎@Sue Hogg I know the Keen brand and I think their boots would be fine for a trek in the Everest Region, as long as they are waterproof. The paths in the Everest Region are still defined. 

What is the best way to approach altitude training - here in Australia or acclimitisation when in Nepal

‎@Sue Hogg We cant really prepare much in Australia, other than to be as fit as possible and just remember go slow and then go even slower! Hydration is also key I believe. Just take your time and enjoy the amazing views . 

What's the most amazing trek you would recommend? I am a seasoned trekker and would love something unique in Nepal (have done Everest and Annapurna). 

‎@ Damian Cerini Would you consider Bhutan? We have the Bhutan Sacred Summit Trek leaving in October. Our first ever departure in April went out full with a lot of repeat Peregrine Nepal trekkers and they came back raving! Or we also have a trek in the Mustang region guaranteed to depart.

Are there any places you would avoid or wouldn't recommend going to? I'd like to make the most of my time there, and will be going for a total of 11 days backpacking. I don't have an exact itinerary yet.

@Amanda Welling If you have 11 days in total, I would suggest just focusing on either the Annapurna's or Everest region. Don't try and do both. Maybe a couple of days in Kathmandu then heads for the hills .

What age do you think is the minimum for kids to do some trekking? I think it would be a fantastic experience for kids but would want it to be a positive one.

‎@Cheryl Ryce I really don't think I would take a child under seven. We do offer select family treks, just go to the family tab on the Peregrine website. I would suggest not taking any child above 3500 metres, though. 

 I have never trekked before. What is a good way/place to start learning to trek without being overwhelmed?

@Michelle First of all I would establish how long you'd like to go for and how challenging a trek you are after. Don't try to do too much on your first visit to Nepal, trust me it's really not a one-time visit kind of place! The Annapurna's are typically more lush and green with the trekking trails taking you through local villages and rice padi fields. The Everest region is much more 'lunar' in its landscape and you are very close to those dramatic peaks. There are fabulous treks of varying degrees of difficulty on both sides, neither which will disappoint. 

I'd like to know the best time of year to take a trek?

‎@Anna The trekking season is typically from late to mid-September through to mid-May. October, November and December have great visibility, although it is winter. If you are after seeing rhododendrons in bloom then March/April is the time to go.

Is your imagination running wild yet? Feel free to ask more question in the comments section below.

If you'd like to read more about our Himalayan adventures, just head to the website and request a FREE brochure.

We also hold regular film nights, where you can get a bit of insight into what to expect from a Peregrine adventure. These are free to attend and are always a fun night. Find out where to catch a Himalaya film night in your city.

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