Lukla Experience: Enjoy the Ride

I had no idea that Lukla Airport was one of the most dangerous airports in the world until the day I was leaving Kathmandu to start my Everest Base Camp adventure. The plane ride from the capital of Nepal to Lukla would take approximately 25 – 30 minutes. A short ride, indeed; however, with the perceived danger occupying the space of my mind, it could seem long. It was raining that day, which intensified the fear that had found its way into my heart and mind. I remember thinking about the possibility of crash for more than a dozen times. As we were onboard the small aircraft by Tara Air, my fear slightly subsided when I saw the flight attendant dressed in what must be a traditional Nepali costume. I thought ‘she must have been on such ride many times’ and wondered if she shared any of my fear. I watched how the pilots worked on the various buttons, and told myself that I just had to trust that they knew what they were doing (of course, right?!). Soon we were soaring high in the sky. The flight attendant approached with candies on a tray, her beautiful smile drove some of my fear away. I looked out of the window. Visibility was quite poor but I could discern the awe-inspiring scenery outside. In quite a strange way, I thought ‘if the plane crashed, and I died, I would have no regret dying doing the thing I love’. That thought liberated me from the fear that had held me hostage earlier. I sat back, relaxed and enjoyed the rest of the ride. I actually felt lucky to have had this extraordinary flying experience! The next thing I knew we were landing on the tiny, treacherous runway of Lukla Airport perched on a steep cliff. The EBC trek was the adventure I came to Nepal for, but I just had one. Indeed, the ride was an adventure in itself :-)!

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Looking out of the bus window at the small airplanes serving Kathmandu and other localities within Nepal.

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That was the airplane of Tara Air that used for our Kathmandu-Lukla journey.

Lukla cockpit

Photo Courtesy of Jason Newholm

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Looking out of the plane window at Kathmandu way down below

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Looking out of the plane window for a view of the mountains. Poor visibility but beauty always has its way to reveal itself :-).

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Safely landed at Lukla Airport! Unloading of our bags. The weather condition had improved, as if blessing the start of our EBC adventure :-).

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A plane just landed on the tiny runway of Lukla Airport perched on a steep cliff.

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A plane is about to take off! Photo courtesy of Jason Newholm

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Lukla Airport.

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Mountain view from the airport.

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A little boy is watching the takeoff and landing of airplanes at Lukla Airport.

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