I am typically one of those people who says that she will write a review but never get around to it.
In this instance nothing would prevent me.
From the very beginning contacting Ram by email was such a simple experience. He was always so helpful and genuine. We initially booked a trek to EBC in 2015 but weeks before we were supposed to go the Earthquake happened. Ram was incredible. Even though his country was devastated he answered emails and understood our worry and he let us retain our deposit for a trek in the future.
Fast forward two years…. we arranged to finally do the EBC trek in March 2017. Once again Ram was always a pleasure to contact. We easily figured out dates and we changed things around loads. Nothing phased him!
On arrival in Nepal we were taken to the hotel and then collected from the hotel later by Ramesh who it turned out was our guide for the trek (I will save my words about Ramesh for later!) Ramesh took us to the office where we finalised plans for the trek. We instantly felt safe. Ram understood our worry about altitude (I’ve suffered before) and our desire to go slowly. He walked us through what would happen on the trek etc.
Because I am the least organised person in the world I had most of my trekking gear to buy in Nepal. Ramesh agreed to take me the next day. And he ensured that not only did I get a good deal but that all of the gear was of good quality. On the trek after our flight to Lukla we picked up Khaji (sp?) our porter and started the trek.
Now I can tell you of how INCREDIBLE Ramesh is. He goes above and beyond to make sure that you are safe and comfortable. With him you don’t just get a guide, you get a friend, a cheerleader, a teacher, a photographer and a healthcare professional. He doesn’t just do his job he goes so much further.
When you are struggling across a suspension bridge he will hold your hand. When you are struggling for breath on those awful Namche steps he will carry your bag. When you are lagging behind he will wait cheerfully and say “no problem”. You never feel like an inconvenience. He always smiles and tells you that it is okay.
He took us on routes that were off the tourist trail to see the best views.
He will always get you the best tea houses (even ensuring you get morning views of Everest!).
He will always get you extra blankets (very necessary)
When you are on your last legs; struggling to breathe at 5000m he will tell you that you can do it and make you believe it.
We needed to go down one day because my friend was suffering from AMS. I got tearful because I thought that meant it was over. He made me believe that it wasn’t and I would fulfil that childhood dream (I did).
He knows all the mountains, their heights and loads of information about them. He will quiz you (I always failed, especially on Taboche).
On the trek we could not have asked for a more perfect guide. He cares so much about ensuring you see what you came to see and do so safely.
Which brings me to the end of the trek. My friend became extremely sick in Gorakshep (the highest point of the trek). The decision was made for her to be rescued by helicopter.
The wonderful Khaji took me to base camp while Ramesh arranged with Ram for the helicopter evacuation. Khaji went above and beyond for me. He carried by bag, held my hand and took me to the top of the world, something I would never forget. I was sad that my friend wasn’t by my side, but Khaji and the little pupper that followed us made it bearable.
When I got back, Ram and Ramesh had done everything. Ramesh packed our bag, and carried my friend, with the aid of a local man, up to the helipad. Back in Kathmandu we were taken to an incredibly efficient hospital, my friend was treated quickly and to an excellent standard.
Ram came to the hospital and offered to stay. If that isn’t going the extra mile I don’t know what is. Ram and Ramesh were simply amazing. My friend is currently still there for observation (but is fine in her swanky hotel room style hospital room!) I am waiting for Ramesh to pick me up and take me to her and Ram will meet us there.
Never, ever have I experienced such professionalism and kindness from a company. The people that are attached to this company are just incredible.
I mean it when I say that trekking with anybody else means you are missing out on an amazing experience. I have spoken to so many people who have had negative experiences or haven’t made it due to their guides.
Words really aren’t enough. I am crying as I reflect on the kindness we have been shown so consistently. I feel we will be leaving Nepal with friends.