The Original Everest Marathon is part of a fully-supported trekking holiday
We want you to have a brilliant experience. Taking part in the OEM isn't just about running the toughest marathon in the world, it's just as much about the journey to the start. From the time you arrive, you'll be part of a team of like-minded people, many of which will remain life-long friends.
Our OEM team of leaders and doctors are chosen carefully. The team leaders are your inspiration, guide, font of all knowledge as well as being jolly good company. To get into this coveted role, they need to be international athletes with experience of running at altitude as well as a personal experience of the OEM.
Two doctors are allocated to each team so they can get to know you inside out and help you to look after yourself on the mountain.
All the doctors are runners and mountaineers and have experience of both working and playing at altitude. In 2019, our team leaders and doctors are all English, with the exception of David, who is coming from New Zealand.
Having this strong team culture is what makes the OEM so unique. It allows us to keep you safe in a high altitude environment so that you feel good as you acclimatise and then can run at your best.
We will be trekking in the traditional fashion of expeditions in the Himalaya, using tents for all but two of the nights. We use very well insulated 2-person tents and thick camping mattresses. We’ve chosen tents over lodges as they tend to be warmer and cleaner and we get to stay in lovely places.
All our food will be prepared by our team of expert Nepali cooks, who will be travelling with us. Although being at altitude is great for losing extra inches where you don’t want them, you’ll find that the hot breakfasts, lunches and evening meals will negate the sliming effect.
We will be eating mainly vegetarian, local-style meals, made up from oats, eggs, potatoes, rice, lentils and lots of fresh vegetables.
All the food, cooking equipment and fuel for heating water and cooking will be transported up the valley by Yak and porter
The water needs to be boiled or sterilised, so every morning there will be big thermoses for breakfast drinks and filling your water bottle for the day.
We will be making use of lodges as dining rooms, so there’s somewhere comfortable to sit in the evenings. Every evening after dinner there will be a team meeting followed by a talk from someone in the group or local expert.
Washing is optional. We walk slowly on the trek, so there's no need to break sweat. When we get to camp, there will be bowls of warm water prepared for the group to wash in rotation - every 3 days is a luxury!
The further we go up the valley, the less flowing water there is, so we use the toilet tents erected by the porters, so expect things to be a little different than at home.
The weather in November and early December tends to be dry and sunny, but it's possible we may have rain or snow. One thing we know for definite is that it gets colder the higher we go up the valley and in the evenings above Namche Bazaar, it’s duvet-time.
Our personal bags are carried by porter, so having good quality, lightweight kit is really important as each person is allowed a maximum of 12 kilos to put into the OEM kitbag. If you don’t have a good duvet jacket, it's a good reason to buy one. For details of the special OEM duvets from PHD, log in to your account and go to the page on kit. You can also buy a duvet in Kathmandu, Namche Bazaar or hire one from our agent.
A list of the clothes and equipment you’ll need is on the members part of the website, accessible when your deposit has been paid.
It’s best to buy an Ncell Sim card for your phone. There is a reasonable mobile signal up the Khumbu Valley but nothing gets through from the Gokyo valley. All the lodges have wifi and the cost per hour rises with the altitude, but it's not to be depended on, especially when a lot of people are logged in.
For charging your phone it’s best to use a folding solar panel strapped to the back of your pack as re-charging a portable recharger may not be possible until we return to Namche Bazaar.
Almost all the costs of the trip have been included in the price, so you only need to take enough cash up the valley to pay for:
- the evening meal after the race
- cakes, apple pie and biscuits from the bakeries en route
- alcohol and any extra teas / coffees in lodges
- presents for others and yourself - the good value ‘branded’ clothing in Namche Bazaar – very good but not kosher!
Sometimes there are power cuts, so you can’t rely on using a card for purchases. Nepali rupees can’t be bought outside the country, so you need to get them in Kathmandu.
Maintaining good health
Our approach is about maintaining good health throughout the trek - prevention rather than cure. We have a very high ratio of doctors to group members, compared to other events, so you’re in good hands.
We carry a very comprehensive medical kit including a pressure chamber and oxygen for treating altitude sickness but our approach is to take time to acclimatise naturally and avoid needing to use any of this kit.
During the race we have control points approximately every 3 miles, staffed by a marshal who can provide refreshments. Doctors are also available at some of the control points, providing medical expertise.
Insurance which covers trekking and racing is compulsory. This must cover emergency helicopter evacuation, medical treatment in Kathmandu and repatriation. There are details of the insurance we recommend on the Members page.
The race organiser has insurance for public liability and professional indemnity which covers the volunteer trek leaders.