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Nepal High Passes Trek (Private)

  • 09/27/2023
  • 6:00 AM
  • 11/06/2023
  • 10:00 PM
  • Nepal


This is a private event, organized by a MAA member looking for partners. Please express interest by joining the waitlist, the organizer will contact you. 

Nepal High Passes Trek - "Yeti Supertramp"

Join us in Nepal for some epic rural trekking to far away high places few have been before!  Together we will cross some of the highest mountain passes on earth and climb less travelled peaks on a long journey through the Himalaya.  This Yeti Supertramp shall be a grand tour of Rolwaling, Everest, and Makalu/Barun regions and will take nearly six weeks to complete. 

Staging begins and ends in Katmandu with sightseeing, supply coordination & orientation. The general idea is to employ local help to portage climbing and camping gear to select basecamps so the trekking sections are truly enjoyable with smaller day packs.  Food would be resupplied between each of the three segments to lighten loads.  We will go Alpine style on the climbing portions.

Part 1 – Rolwaling to Gokyo

Starts with a Jeep ride to Gonggar and trek over Daldung La to the remote and unspoiled holy Buddhist sanctuary of Rolwaling valley.  This route less travelled, loaded with waterfalls and suspension bridges has been described as “one of the most challenging treks in Nepal”.  This gets us acclimatized as we parallel the Tibet border just kilometers to the north in the first week.  Opportunities for side shows abound including Gaurishankar temple, Menlung La to Tibet, old settlement of Na, Yalung glacier, and the stunning Tsho Rolpa glacial lake below.

From here, we move up the Takarding glacier to Tesi Lapcha Phedi to camp, explore, and decision making.  Our “baseline route climbs semi-technically over Tesi Lapcha La hi pass (5755m) to Thyangbo & up valley to Lungdhen.  Alternatively, the energetic adventure goes higher up the Rolwaling glacier past 8 peaks (some unclimbed) including Langdak (6240m) then down glacier to Lungdhen town for respite in Thorwa hotel lodge on the ancient trade route.  Either way is a sound & memorable adventure.

Finally, part 1 culminates with our climb over Renjo La pass (5360m) to Gokyo valley with views of Cho Oyu and perhaps our first glimpse of Everest. 

Part 2 – Gokyo to Khumbu

Part 2 starts with an acclimatization climb up Gokyo Ri peak (5357m) and down.  Then we cross the mighty Ngozumba Glacier (largest in Nepal) where our baseline route would cross Cho La Pass (5368m) to Lobuche.  But here lies an opportunity for my highlight of the venture, a relatively unexplored climbing attempt venturing further north past Cho La Col (5656m) to a fascinating narrow ridge that separates the Gaunara glacier from the Changri Nup glacier.  This ridge drew my interest on numerous Google Earth flyovers and has been labeled on the map as “Changri La” (5802m) which only makes it sound all the more possible and alluring.

Whether via Changri Nup glacier or via Lobuche, part 2 ends with a stop-over in Gorak Shep with a side trip to Everest Base Camp (EBC 5364m). 

Part 3 – Khumbu (EBC) to Mera Peak (Makalu/Barun)

The final leg of the journey becomes a little more climbing focused since it puts us at the base of many such opportunities as we trek from the Khumbu valley through the far eastern side of Sagarmatha national park to Makalu/Barun national park.  We will start near EBC at Gorak Shep where rendezvous is possible with new team members, and head down to Lobuche and climb over the Kongma La pass (5535m) to Chhukhung.  This puts us in the Amphulapcha area at the base of Island peak looking up at the massive south face of Nuptse, Lhotse, and Lhotse Shar.  The route moves along to climb the formidable Amphulapcha La pass (5839m) where Amphulapche peak, unclimbed “hills”, Kali Himal, Baruntse will tower over us beckoning the adventurous and energetic which could be your opportunity to bag a 7Km high peak! 

After any foray into these high peaks, we begin our journey homeward via the Honggu Khola valley.  But the fun is definitely not over.  Regardless of the outcome or decisions of the high country, we still have the Mera peaks to enjoy starting by climbing the Mera La pass (5415m) to Khare camp, the Mera glacier to high camp (5780m) and the Mera peaks (6476m).  These less travelled hills should not disappoint!  The tour ends with another less travelled trek south out through the Inkhu Khola valley and Cherem for more cultural immersion and vehicle pick up back to Katmandu.

Team Member Prerequisites for the climbing portions of this event:

To participate in the climbing options of this trek, one should have prior training in glacier travel and crevasse rescue as well as general mountaineering and rope skills.  One should also have experience practicing these skills including tie-in & travel in a roped team in an alpine environment.  We will spend significant time above 5,000m elevation on this trip, so successful experience above 4,000m (13,200ft) meaning no unmanaged altitude sickness is a requirement.  Experience placing gear while lead climbing in snow and rock environments is highly preferred as this will be a small team and anyone may end up in a lead or rescue role at some time during our optional climbing segments.  Fitness level to hike and climb long hours with a pack day after day is recommended.  Lastly and most important is behaving as a team player, recognizing strengths and weaknesses of ourselves & others, aiding when needed (no loan wolfs please for this trip) as we are only as successful as our lowest common denominator.

We will be using our own equipment as much as possible.  Some MAA club equipment may be available for borrow, and it may make sense to pick up some things in Katmandu to reduce airline luggage fees.  This will be coordinated leading up to the event.

All that said, it may be possible for friends or family to join in on some of the trekking segments and/or as a supporting member of the team without all the climbing prereqs.  For example: trekking out and back up the Rolwaling, to Gokyo, or to Everest Base Camp, even backwards to Mera peak and return at the end.  Please be sure to explain the nature of your interest in applying for the event as suitable transportation will need to be arranged.

Group size

The preferred group size for the climbing segments is 2 to 6 participants (not including sherpa support).  Since some people will do only one of the three segments, there should hopefully be room to accommodate all qualified climbers with the means and will for such an event (a tall order)!

Price and Expenses

Final price for the shared organized portion of this trip will be determined once we have group size and make-up for each segment.  Initial estimate of the overall 5 week trip base upon 2 people was in the neighborhood of $250 per person per day including food, lodging, support, for reference.  This will depend upon level of support we finalize upon.  This is a custom itinerary with complicated logistics.  Climbing permits are generally less in the fall than in springtime, so that is on our side. Please keep in touch for further estimates of the shared costs.  Airfare to and from Katmandu is on your own.

Gear and clothing

Dress will need to be for both high altitude mountain environment and for early autumn trekking.  We could see rain and fog at times on the trek in or out.

  • Lightweight hardshell jacket and pants
  • Warm down jacket and light puff pants for camp and descents
  • Wicking base layer top & bottom
  • Soft shell hooded general mountaineering jacket
  • Lightweight trekking pants (zip-offs might be handy)
  • Good pair of general mountaineering trousers
  • One pair of light shorts or swimwear optional
  • 3 pair quality wool and/or synthetic socks and underwear
  • Warm down mittens plus climbing gloves
  • Warm hat, glacier cap, balaclava
  • Mountaineering boots and sturdy crampons
  • Lightweight but reliable quick change snowshoes w/cleats
  • Climbing harness, belay device, slings & biners, jumar, helmut
  • Pair of ice tools (one long w/adze, one short w/hammer
  • Warm boot cover gaiters plus light ankle gaiters
  • Trekking poles
  • Mountaineering glasses/goggles plus sun glasses, sun protection
  • Cold weather sleeping bag
  • Tent (probably to be shared - will be worked out prior)
Yeti Supertramp Master (full) Route Daily Master Itinerary (6 weeks)
date travel target trek time possible activities altitude (pm)
27-Sep arrive Katmandu clear immigration, get to lodge, meet & greet 1400m
28-Sep Katmandu orientation, supplies, logistics, sightseeing, tea 1400m
29-Sep Katmandu to Simigaon 2 hr 9 hr jeep ride to Gonggar, trek to Simigaon 2020m
30-Sep Simigaon to Shakpa Kharka OR- 2 hr short trek to camp, additional walk up & down 2660m
30-Sep Simigaon to Dongang 7 hr? uphill trekking on low route 2800m
1-Oct flexible rest day if needed acclimitization walk up & down or to river camp 2800m
2-Oct location to Beding 8hr trek over Daldung La pass (2976m) and down 3690m
3-Oct rest day in Beding visit temple, acclimitization walk toward Tibet 3690m
4-Oct Beding to Nagaon 5hr sightseeing the ancient settlement 4180m
Nagaon settlement is an alternative turn around point for family members/friends to do Rolwaling trek only
5-Oct Na to Tsho Rolpa 7hr hang out at glacial lake, look at glacier 4540m
6-Oct Tsho Rolpa to Trakarding glacier 7hr chill 4800m
7-Oct Trakarding to Tashi Lapcha Phedi 7hr cross glacier, explore upward route 5580m?
8-Oct "rest day" or move up glacier Decision making day, try obstacles, move or stay 5600m
9-Oct Lapcha Phedi to Tashi Cape OR- 8hr climb over Tashi Lapcha La pass (5755m) & down 5110m
9-Oct Rolwaling glacier upward 10hr establish basecamp for peak such as Langdak 5800m
10-Oct Ngole (Tashi cape) to Thame OR- 8hr downhill trekking 3900m
10-Oct Langdak basecamp to Langdak glacier 14hr climb peak of choice (6240m) and down 4900m
11-Oct Rest day in Thame OR- recover, get dry if needed 3900m
11-Oct Langdak glacier to Lungdhen 9hr glacier travel, trek to Lungdhen if we can make it 4400m
12-Oct Thame to Lungden OR- 8hr trekking 4400m
12-Oct flex day in Lungdhen  hiking, ancient tibetan trading route, minor resupply 4400m
13-Oct Lungdhen to Gokyo 6hr trek over Renjo La pass (5340m), views of Everest 4750m
note: Gokyo is meet up rendezvous for anyone departing from part 1 or joining part 2
14-Oct flexible rest at Gokyo 4hr climb Gokyo Ri (5357m), resupply, meet-up w/team 4750m
15-Oct Gokyo to Drognag 6hr pass glacial lakes, cross NgoZumba glacier (largest) 4800m
16-Oct Drognag to Dzonglha OR- 7hr climb steep famous Cho La pass (5360m), cross glacier 4830m
16-Oct Cho La Phedi to Gaunara Glacier 9hr uncharted wild territory, or over Cho la col 5400m
17-Oct Dzonglha to Lobuche OR- 4hr "Nepali flat" trekking 4910m
17-Oct Gaunara glacier to Changri Nup glacier climbing rock band Changri La pass (5802m) & down 5300m
18-Oct Lobuche to Gorak Shep OR- 4hr over Lobuche pass, optional side to EBC (5364m) 5150m
18-Oct Changri Nup glacier to Gorak Shep 4hr down glacier, then optional side to EBC (5364m) 5150m
19-Oct Gorak Shep to Lobuche 3hr easy day, or optional hike to Kala Patthar (PumoRi bc) 4910m
note: this is the meet-up zone between part  2 & 3 via Tengbuche monestary & Lukla flight
20-Oct Lobuche to Chuking 7hr trekking climb over Kongma La pass (5535m) & down 4730m
21-Oct Chuking to Amphu Lapcha basecamp 6hr pass by Island peak, Lhotse glacier, Imja Tsho lake 5200m?
note: this is a decision day on climbing a peak here: Island, Amphulapche, Baruntse, unclimbed one
22-Oct Amphu Lapcha base to White Pond  7hr Climb the challenging Amphu Lapcha La pass (5839m) 5400m?
22-Oct Amphu Lapcha base to White Pond 14hr is it possible to climb one of the Amphu peaks from the pass?  (We will do one or the other) 5300m
22-Oct Amphu base to Baruntse basecamp 12hr? cross Hunku glacier if Baruntse is to be climbed 5500+m
23-Oct rest day White Pond OR- rest, dry out if needed 5400m?
23-Oct Baruntse base to high camp 10hr climb via west col to high camp, go for summit or dig in bivy 6400m
24-Oct White Pond to Hunku OR- 2hr cultural day 5200m?
24-Oct Baruntse high camp to peak & down 16hr alpine start summit day (7152m), big decent, pick gear 5500m?
25-Oct flex day for weather contingency climb more minor peak nearby (5968m) Hunku Pokhari? 5200m?
26-Oct location to Seto 6hr down valley of Hongku Khola 5000m?
27-Oct rest day   let's have a recovery day here or flex day from climb 5000m?
28-Oct Seto to Kongma Dingma 5hr down then up, "Nepali flat" 5035m
29-Oct Kongma Dingma to Mera high camp 9hr let's blow past base camp if we can 5780m
30-Oct Mera high camp to peak to Khare 10hr summit Mera peak N (6476m) or central (6461m) 5054m
note: if Baruntse is chosen and takes longer than expected, Mera peaks become optional
31-Oct Khare to Khote 6hr pass Dig glacier and Sabai Tsho lake 4180m
1-Nov Khote to Panch Pokari 5hr trekking down Inku Khola, up to five ponds, Gaikharka 4223m
2-Nov Panch Pokari to Cholem (Cherem) 6hr rocky trek, view of Kanchenjunga, rhodadendrons 3560m
3-Nov Cholem to Khiraule 8hr Buddhist monestary of 1738AD 3560m
4-Nov Khiraule to Bung, Patale Dhap 4hr early start here will allow drive to Patale Dhap 3100m?
5-Nov Patale to Katmandu remainder of drive, massage, sauna if time and will. 2900m
6-Nov Katmandu airport Fly out towards home! (via HK or wherever)

(916) 872-3399

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