Better duo than solo - better safe than sorry!
Trekking Agencies Association Nepal (TAAN) is upgrading its rules and regulations on trekking from April 1. TAAN states that, ‘It is compulsory for trekkers to have trekking guides hired while going to trek up in the mountains. Solo travelers as well as groups are required to hire trekking guides during their trekking duration.’
Trekking guides who have been getting less opportunities to work are happy about getting a chance to go back to the mountains. According to the trekking guides , accidents and casualties minimization and management up in the Himalayan trails is going to be better if they are accompanied by trained trekking guides who can work swiftly even during the times of emergency. Most trekking guides belonging to these Himalayan areas themselves and are experienced to work during any extremes. Their origin makes them even more skilled to become trekking guides. These people are well aware about the environment and situation of the trekking areas in general.
The trekking agencies are overwhelmed to add in more trekking guides in their teams giving trekking guides the employment opportunity to thrive in this competitive area. Most trekking agencies which follows customer safety ethics have already been practicing this rule but since its authorized from TAAN itself would compel the rest of the tourists to follow this as well. This can be called in as a safety policy for trekking enthusiasts in Nepal. Trekking agencies are responsible for the safety of their customers and this certain policies by TAAN has introduced a very thoughtful policy for trekkers in Nepal. Solo traveling is dangerous up in the mountains and having guide makes it easier and safer to travel.
The locals from various trekking areas also talk about how there is a huge communication gap and difficulty and this would also be minimized if there is a compulsion about hiring trekking guides for their respective trekking routes.
Suresh Rai, a local from Solukhumbu District says , “ We encounter so many trekkers who come without guides getting lost all the way up in the forest while we collect woods for fire. We also find a-lot of injured trekkers on our way and some need to be carried down to the hotel or the health post. We cannot communicate properly because we do not know English but usually lead them towards their hotel with sign language.“ He also mentions how the locals help trekkers without guides during emergencies. Hiring a well-trained guide would save them from all the threats and possible casualties up in the unknown trails of the himalayas says a local hotel owner from the Everest Base Camp.
Exploring is wonderful but there could be unseen dangers in the wilderness which a trekker going through a new route might not be able to comprehend to without an experienced guide’s assistance.
Trekkers who are aware about the uncertain situation up in the mountains always hire a guide but there is certain amount of people who try to get through the hills and wilderness without expert assistance. Some do make it through and have an amazing experience while a-lot of them go through life threatening situations. Hiring a trekking guide might cost some money but it is to be believed that safety of the trekkers matters more. It is a great deal to see TAAN working for the safety of tourists who are trekking enthusiasts. This decision will definitely result to less number of people suffering casualties.