Slots are now open for a 17-day trek to Everest Base Camp. | Courtesy Hutchings Museum

The Hutchings Museum offers new expedition

The Hutchings Museum is offering a guided, 17-day expedition in September to Mount Everest Base Camp, complete with professional sherpas and a National Geographic Certified Educator.

Daniela Larsen, Hutchings Museum Director, is leading the expedition. This trip will be her third visit to Mount Everest, and she has been leading expeditions for over six years. “It’s such an amazing, life-changing experience to go,” Larsen said.

Larsen explained when most people think of Mount Everest, they think snow and ice picks and what you’ve seen in the movies, but this expedition isn’t that experience. It’s a walking hike up to the base camp and they take things “nice and slow.” “You don’t have to be in great shape. You aren’t even carrying a big bag since the sherpas are there,” she explained. Last year, Larsen led a group of 50 people on this trip, and she said the age range was nine to 65 years.

The expedition itinerary includes sightseeing and visiting the various villages and monasteries that dot the mountain. “It’s an amazingly educational experience for everybody. It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity,” Larsen said. The schedule details each day’s plan, with time spent walking ranging from four hours to six-and-a-half hours per day. The other time is spent resting for acclimation, visiting the villages, and learning more about the culture.

Participants from a previous year’s expedition. | Courtesy Hutchings Museum.

“One of our core values here at the museum is exploration,” Larsen explained. “We want to provide opportunities for people to get out in the world, explore it. Get in contact with nature. People don’t care about preserving the environment if they’re not in it.” Larsen said it’s so beneficial to explore different parts of the world so there’s a better understanding of the global impact we have here in Utah. “Why would you ever care about something you’ve never encountered?  The wildlife, people, and the culture are really different on this trip,” she continued.

The museum is capping the trip at 30 people this year, to give more opportunities for exploring, said Larsen. “You’ll fall in love with nature and conservation and experiencing something different.” She said in the past group, many were teenagers, traveling with their parents. They also have a lot of retired people who have this trip on their bucket list. “It’s not as physically grueling as most people think,” Larsen said. The trip starts in t-shirts and will end with a bit of snow or rain near the top. “But it doesn’t need training. The biggest concern is elevation sickness, but those living in Utah will have an easier time. And we take precautions and make sure to go slow.”

“We’re keeping that ‘John Hutchings spirit’ alive,” Larsen said. “He wanted to bring the world to Lehi, and now we’re living in a time where there’s an opportunity to take people from Utah to other parts of the world.”

The cost of the trip is $3,995 per person and includes the following: Airport pickup and drop off, three meals a day, 17 nights lodging, taxes and permits, gratuities, and the flight from Kathmandu to Lukla. The cost doesn’t include the airfare to and from Kathmandu, insurance, visas, or gear. Hutchings Museum has partnered with Expedia Travel in Lehi for a great group rate on flights out of Utah, and Larsen said to check there first before going online. The exact same expedition through National Geographic costs $6995 and doesn’t include any flights, gratuities or extras. “We have the chance to experience this trip in a really cost-effective way,” Larsen said.

For more details visit johnhutchingsmuseum.org/everestbasecamp

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