I made a noteworthy change to the early part of my 'round the world backpacking itinerary.
It's a change in route, rather than countries I intend to visit. Initially, I was planning to tour southeast Asia first, then work counterclockwise toward Tibet, Nepal, and India.
The order was something along the lines of:
New Zealand…Australia…Bali…Thailand…Cambodia…Vietnam…China…Tibet…Nepal…India (and on to Africa)
Apparently, from the new book I started reading a few days ago, Trekking in Nepal by Stephen Bezruchka, this would put me in Nepal during the monsoon season which runs from July through late September.
The author indicates trekking in monsoon weather can be an adventure unto itself, however, the idea of constantly walking in the rain, up and down slippery slopes, while coming across washed out bridges does not appeal to me.
So, with a little rearranging, I figure I can head in a clockwise manner and hit Nepal in near prime trekking weather, March/April, which are the third and fourth most popular (and thus potentially ideal) months to trek.
The prime season is October and November, however that will fall too late in 2008 for me to make a reality based on my overall plan.
Since trekking in Nepal is one of the experiences I am looking forward to with the most childlike giddyness, I was happy to rearrange my approach to:
New Zealand…Australia…Bali…Thailand…India…Nepal…Tibet…China…Vietnam…Cambodia…Thailand (longer stay, then on to Africa)
Also, the book is starting to give shape to the kind of trekking experience I want. While getting to Everest Base Camp sounds cool, I think it's the second most popular trek for a reason, high altitudes.
I've seen some posts on BootsnAll that it's not too bad, however, I've also never been above 5,000 feet unless it's in a plane, nor walking for weeks at a time.
So, I'm currently focusing on a 2-3 week trek in the Annapurna region (the most trekked area of Nepal per the book).
If anyone has done trekking in Nepal (or the Himalaya), I'd appreciate any feedback about your experiences and/or suggestions!