A terrifying airport runway, long days hiking, a lack of oxygen and no showers – a self-made millionaire with no hiking experience has revealed a blow-by-blow account of his trip to Everest Basecamp with all luxuries out of the window.

Neel Parekh, 35, from Los Angeles, ventured to the Himalayas this spring with his wife for a ‘grueling’ nine-day trek to the base of the world’s highest mountain.

In a thread documenting the experience on X (formerly Twitter), the self-proclaimed ‘desk jockey business owner’ highlights that he only trained for three weeks before the trek, stating: ‘I firmly believe that ANYONE with average fitness can do this.’

He adds: ‘The trek itself isn’t too technical. It’s long, yeah, but that’s expected. The hard parts come from the unexpected…’

Starting from ‘day one,’ Neel said the trek kicked off with a heart-pounding flight to the ‘most dangerous airstrip in the world’ which only runs for 1,729ft and ‘looks like it’s made for ants.’

Neel Parekh, 35, from Los Angeles, ventured to the Himalayas this spring with his wife, for a ‘grueling’ nine-day trek to the base of the world’s highest mountain and he wrote about it on X

Starting from 'day one,' Neel said the trek started with a heart-pounding flight to the 'most dangerous airstrip in the world' which only runs for 1,729ft and 'looks like it's made for ants'

Starting from ‘day one,’ Neel said the trek started with a heart-pounding flight to the ‘most dangerous airstrip in the world’ which only runs for 1,729ft and ‘looks like it’s made for ants’

From there, Neel and his wife met a local guide called Govinda and they set out on their journey. 

His diary entry for that day enthusiastically reads: ‘Feeling fresh, excitement is at a high. Easy day. Four-hour trek. We check into a tea house accommodation. 

‘Food was provided the entire trip so no problemo there. No issues on Day One. LFG. This sh** is going to be easy.’

However, on the second day, Neel’s sentiments changed slightly as he wrote, ‘Update: this sh** was, indeed, not easy.’

He notes that some of the trickier moments included ‘seven hours of trekking,’ ‘suspension bridges,’ ‘uneven terrain,’ and ‘slogging uphill with a side stitch.’ 

But he does highlight some ‘fun parts’ of the adventure, such as ‘moving through small villages’ to observe ‘a different way of life’ and ‘un-freakin-real’ landscapes which make you ‘feel like you’re in a different world.’

At the end of day two, Neel and his wife reached the ‘biggest’ town in the area, Namche Bazar, and he said it ‘felt incredible to be near some modernness (i.e. they even a tiny local bar).’

Waking up the next day, Neel said things got off to a bad start as he was ‘freezing,’ with even the shower being ‘barely above freezing temperature.’

Trickier moments included 'seven hours of trekking,' 'suspension bridges,' 'uneven terrain,' and 'slogging uphill with a side stitch'

Trickier moments included ‘seven hours of trekking,’ ‘suspension bridges,’ ‘uneven terrain,’ and ‘slogging uphill with a side stitch’

The worst part of Neel's expedition came on the fourth day, when it 'poured all day'

The worst part of Neel’s expedition came on the fourth day, when it ‘poured all day’

But he soon warmed up with a four-hour hike uphill which rewarded him with ‘a viewpoint and a glimpse of the homie Everest peeking out beyond the mountain range.’

The worst part of Neel’s expedition came on the fourth day, when it ‘poured all day.’

Luckily, he said, he rented a rain jacket in Kathmandu, so he ‘threw that on and bundled up.’ 

On top of the bad weather, the businessman said he was suffering from fatigue after ‘multiple days of bad sleep,’ due to poor and very basic accommodation.

He said he ended the day in his sleeping bag, ‘wet from the rain and frustrated at what I got myself into.’

A stint of ‘schizophrenic’ weather continued into day five, with sunshine, wind, snow and ‘then back to sunny.’

However, Neel said the hiking trail which ran for six hours was ‘pretty easy,’ with a string of ‘suspension bridges and gorgeous rivers.’

From this day onwards, the Californian said he felt ‘re-energized’ about the trip and ‘in absolute awe at the changing landscape.’

The only thing setting him back slightly was a bout of altitude sickness on day seven following an acclimatization hike, and his head ‘throbbed’ due to a lack of oxygen and not drinking enough.

After ‘chugging water and Liquid IV’ Neel felt ‘a lot’ better as he detailed the final trek to basecamp.

A stint of schizophrenic' weather continued into day five, with sunshine, wind, snow and 'then back to sunny'

A stint of schizophrenic’ weather continued into day five, with sunshine, wind, snow and ‘then back to sunny’

On the packing front, Neel suggests 'layers' and to 'leave the massive jacket at home'

On the packing front, Neel suggests ‘layers’ and to ‘leave the massive jacket at home’

He wrote for his ‘day eight’ diary entry: ‘Everest Basecamp Finish line is close, baby. We set off through a valley on a six-hour journey to reach out next destination. Yaks accompany us. It’s a beautiful day.

‘Oxygen at this height is 50 per cent of the oxygen at sea level. The final stretch is hard. I’m winded. 

‘I’m stopping every few minutes during the last two hours. But, my excitement at reaching the promised land keeps me going. Finally, I turn the bend and see it. We made it to Basecamp.’

The next morning, following a trek to a viewpoint, Neel and his wife started the journey back to Kathmandu. 

He writes: ‘Both my wife and I feel incredibly accomplished… and also cannot wait to get back to civilization. Massages and momos (dumplings) wait for us back in Kathmandu.’

In a bid to help others plan a trek to Everest Basecamp, Neel went on to share his training plan and essential packing list. 

Firstly, he said his three-week fitness regime consisted of a mix of HIIT boxing and walking up hills for two hours at a time. 

He said of his fitness levels: ‘I was fine physically doing the trek. The altitude made me exhausted some days, but there isn’t too much “training” you can do for that.

‘In hindsight, I would tell someone to just do stairs daily until you can go up and down stairs for one hour without issues. If you have rocky trails near you, even better.’

On the packing front, he suggests ‘layers’ and to ‘leave the massive jacket at home’ and if you don’t own gear already, to buy it in Kathmandu as it is ‘wayyyyy cheaper.’

Along with hiking clothes, his other must-have items include altitude sickness medicine (Diamox), toilet paper, pillow cover and deck of cards as an ‘easy way of making friends in the tea houses.’



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