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Issues for women trekking in Nepal: ‘3 sisters adventure trekking’ guides
journal contributionposted on 18.05.2020, 00:00 by Wendy HillmanWendy Hillman
Nepal is a major destination for tourists, trekkers and spiritual pilgrims. In the bi-annual trekking seasons, March to May and September to November, trekkers flock to both Everest Base Camp and Annapurna Base Camp areas for challenging and spectacular trekking experiences. Most trekkers traditionally hire male guides and porters, often through travel organisations, for structured and bespoke treks in the regions. In Nepal, the ‘3 Sisters Adventure Trekking’ agency is unique as it is a guiding enterprise run by women that also trains women who then work as porters and guides. Ten female guides were interviewed in situ in the off-season using semi-structured in-depth interviews. Questions were asked about the females’ progression in sport, tourism, adventure tourism and tour guiding employment, once they had completed their training. Their experiences regarding leadership and safety issues were examined. Issues pertaining to the gendered construction of the trekking guide throughout Nepal were also considered. As Nepal has many trekking guides, the focus of the research was to uncover issues for female guides when guiding trekkers in the Himalayas. Four main themes emerged from the data. These were trekking guides and their clients, learning, injury while trekking and, gender issues. Much has been written on trekking and guided tours throughout Nepal and more globally. However, there is very little research focusing on female guides. This research seeks to add to the lack of literature and knowledge in the focus area. © 2019, © 2019 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.