Kanchenjunga Base Camp

Kanchenjunga Base Camp information and booking

from
$3790
  • Duration
    23 days
    Days
  • Group size
    6-16
    Persons
  • Difficulty
    Challenging
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Schedule Details

Summary
  • 23 day trip
  • 20 day trek
  • 4 nights hotels/lodges
  • 18 nights camping
Equipment Required
Specialist gear required include walking boots and day pack (a comprehensive gear list is provided in the pre-departure information provided on booking).

Highlights

  • Sightseeing in Kathmandu - Pashupatinath (a major Hindu shrine) and the giant Buddhist stupa at Boudhanath
  • Unsurpassed views of the Kangchenjunga massif, Makalu range and surrounding peaks including Jannu
  • Fully supported camping based trek including 3 hearty meals per day prepared by our cooks
  • Cross Mirgin La
  • Trek through remote villages of the Gurung, Limbu, Rai and Sherpa peoples.

Tour description provided by World Expeditions

Eastern Nepal is characterised by greater diversity on many accounts; ethnic groups such as the Rai and Limbu people,a prolific range of flora due to the higher summer rainfall in the region, and some of the most outstanding mountain vistas anywhere in the Himalaya. By following the glacial torrent of the Tamur and Ghunsa Rivers to their source on the north west side of the Kangchenjunga Himal, we emerge to another world. Dwarfed by an alpine grandeur in almost every direction, peaks such as; Pyramid Peak, Jannu, the Twins and of course Kangchenjunga (8586m) dominate the setting. It is no less dramatic on our southern traverse of the mountain on the return journey by way of the Mirgin La Pass (4500m). This is a challenging traverse through a region seldom visited in recent years.

What's included

  • 22 breakfasts, 19 lunches and 19 dinners
  • Airport transfers
  • Flight kathmandu/suketar/kathmandu valued at us$344
  • Special permit us$40
  • Expert bilingual guide and medical kit
  • Good quality accommodation in kathmandu and basic accommodation in bhadrapur
  • Use of a world expeditions trek pack which includes a quality sleeping bag, down or fibre fill jacket and insulated mat (valued at over us$500)
  • Souvenir world expeditions kit bag
  • Private air conditioned transportation
  • All park entrance fees and trekking permits
  • Porters to carry all personal and group equipment
  • Porter's insurance
  • Sightseeing in kathmandu
  • Site entry fees
  • Accommodation in wilderness campsites

Itinerary

Day 1 Join Kathmandu
You will be met by a representative of World Expeditions and transferred to the Radisson hotel. Remainder of the afternoon at leisure. A pre-trek briefing will be given around 5pm where arrangements will be made for the distribution of your kit bag, sleeping bag and down/fibrefill jacket. Evening drinks are held in the hotel for all World Expeditions clients arriving today. Drinks and snacks will generally be served from 6:30 pm until 7:15pm, and this is a great opportunity to get acquainted with your fellow group members before heading out to dinner.
Day 2 Fly Kathmandu to Suketar (2300M). Trek to Phurumbu (1950M). Walk approx 3hrs.
Taplejung or Suketar is situated in the North Eastern part of Nepal. The flight from Kathmandu takes approximately 1 hour and 10 minutes and affords views of the entire trek and the Himalaya from Kanchenjunga to Langtang. Suketar airport is a STOL and remote airstrip. We then make a gentle hike to the beautiful settlements of Bhotegaon and Tamor Khola valley situated at the left side of the major trail junction. While gently descending and ascending the trail you see a lot of vegetable farming like cauliflowers, millet, corn, rice and potatoes. After 3 hours owe reach Phurumbu village where we spend our first night at the camping site. NB: If our flight to Suketar is cancelled due to adverse weather, we will then fly to Bhadrapur and Drive to Ilam. After that day we will then drive to Suketar and trek to Phurumbu. Our rest day at Gunsa will be cancelled.
Day 3 To Chirwa (1190M). Walk approx. 5hrs.
The roar of the Tamur accompanies us all day as we trek this classic Himalayan gorge with its dense patches of sub-tropical rainforest and cliffs. Most of the villages are up on the valley sides though we do pass through them in places where the valley opens out. The ethnic group here, the Kirantis now known as Limbu, date back more than 2000 years as subsistence farmers in this region. Crops such as rice, millet, barley, wheat and corn are nearly always growing at the time that we visit.
Day 4 To Sekathum (1640M). Walk approx. 6hrs.
The trail today is well defined and the walk is both enjoyable and satisfying. We have only a few climbs up towards the valley where we begin to notice subtle changes in the landscape surrounding us. We weave through large boulders passing below the village of Tapethok and cross a landslide area to reach a bridge crossing a tributary of the Tamur River. This is the Simbuwa Khola, which flows from the south side of Kanchenjunga. We continue on towards the base camp, crossing several bridges and following what is now called the Gunsa Khola.
Day 5 Trek to Amjilasha (2490M). Walk approx. 6 hrs.
The trail is very narrow and we follow the Ghunsa River until we break for lunch. This walk requires a lot of caution and concentration. On the way, we pass a small Sherpa settlement mainly tending to Yaks. After lunch, there is a steep climb towards our overnight camp at Amjilasha. Amjilasha (Amjilosa) is a small Tibetan settlement.
Day 6 To Gepla (2730M). Walk approx. 6hrs.
Today’s walk is predominantly through forest and we will sight many waterfalls along the way. There are no villages to pass through leaving us with a feeling of remoteness in the tranquil forest surroundings.
Day 7 Trek to Ghunsa (3430M). Walk approx. 6hrs.
Before lunch, we follow a narrow trail through thick forests to our lunch site is at Phole village, this is a typical Tibetan village and winter settlement for the villagers of Ghunsa. People of this village depend mainly on yak rearing and weaving carpets. Here we find the one and only monastery of the entire trek and visitors are most welcome.
Day 8 Rest & acclimatisation in Ghunsa.
Today we will enjoy a rest day and there may be time, weather permitting to wash some clothes or other domestic chores. We also have an option of a 3 hrs walk opposite River Khanso Thanso, from where we see a panoramic view of Phole Peak and Sobithongi Peak and also a glimpse of Mt. Khumbakaran. After long days of walking, a rest day is highly recommended.
Day 9 Trek to Kambachen (4040M). Walk approx. 6hrs.
From Ghunsa and above, any signs of human habitation are that of seasonal settlements for the yak herders. They will take their animals to heights of 4000m-4500m in the warmer months of the year. For the trekker the scenery is unmatched. The route past the sheer cliffs and towering peaks of the Kanchenjunga massif and Jannu (7710m) are awe inspiring. They rise directly out of this classical and very grand glacial valley. The trail is ill-defined at times, crossing loose scree and rocks that have been pushed forth from old glaciers. We usually make a camp at Kambachen (4200m) enroute, which is seasonally occupied by locals only. It is quite possible to see wildlife in this remoter part of the Himalaya; blue sheep, ibex, mountain goat or smaller animals among the rocks such as hyrax and marmots. Overhead, various birds of prey may be seen- Lammergeir (a type of vulture) and various eagles, kites and falcons.
Day 10 Trek to Lhonak (4790M). Walk approx. 7hrs.
The trail climbs gradually through open rocky fields to Ramtang (4240m) then across moraines north - west of Kanchenjunga glaciers. Lhonak, at 4790m, is near dry lake bed on an open, sandy plain; water scarce here. There are no houses, but we can camp among the large boulders to get out of the wind. Stunning mountain views abound in all directions.
Day 11 To Kanchenjunga Base Camp (Pangpema) (5140M). Walk approx. 4hrs.
It is well worth exploring the upper end of the valley to fully appreciate the peaks that make up one of the largest mountain masses in the world. The main peak of Kanchenjunga and Wedge Peak cannot be seen until we are almost at Pangpema (5140m) and to increase our chances of good mountain views, we aim to spend an overnight here. This will, however, depend on the weather and trail conditions and progress of each particular group member, which will be decided by your guide. The trail follows moraine for much of the time and due to its ever changing nature and infrequent use is often in poor condition. There are a number of alternative side trips in the area that provide impressive mountain panoramas including Tent and Pyramid Peaks and the Twins. One does not need to go far to enjoy the impressive yet varied mountain views. We aim to spend as much time as possible in the area hoping the weather will be in our favor!
Day 12 Return to Kambachen (4040M). Walk approx. 7hrs.
Returning to Kambachen the way we came in gives us a different perspective of the trail and the scenery around us.
Day 13 Return to Ghunsa (3430M). Walk approx. 4 Hrs
Retracing our steps, we descend to Ghunsa again for an overnight. Our descent takes us past the spectacular mountains and cliffs we enjoyed on the way in.
Day 14 To Selele Base Camp (4500M). Walk approx. 6 hrs.
From Ghunsa, the ascent is along the trail used by the shepherds. Today we ascend through thick forest of birch, pine and rhododendron. At these altitudes and locations it is quite possible the trail will be covered by snow to varying degrees. It is essential we are prepared for more difficult conditions with good clothing, footwear and equipment.
Day 15 To Tseram (3870M) via Mirgin La Pass (4480M). Walk approx. 8hrs.
Today is a challenging day for us. The first 2 hours are a steady, steep climb towards Mirgin La Pass, which is the best view point for Khumbakaran (Janu Himal). In the distance we see Makalu, Baruntse and Chamlang. For the rest of the day, the walks are along ridges with a final descent to Tseram. Before descending we may view Kanchenjunga, Kabru and the Himalayan range. Our overnight camp is in a large flat meadow. NB: In case of heavy snowfall the route to Tseram may not be possible. Your leader will make the final decision on weather and conditions and advise an alternate route.
Day 16 To Ramche (4620M) via Octang, Yalung Glaciers. Walk approx. 7hrs.
Today, we start early to reach Ramche where we stop for lunch. Ramche is our overnight camp. After lunch, we start our trek towards Octang, which is the view point of Kanchenjunga. This is a beautiful walk which has a few climbs; this afternoon walk will take us approximately 3 hrs. The trail climbs into the valley alongside the moraine of the Yalung glaciers. The valley opens up as we approach Yalung,(4260m). Climbing alongside the moraine we make our way through scrub junipers and up a stream to a lake at Lapsang (4430m). We can see the start of the route to Lapsang La as it heads off over the moraines in a valley to the north. Climbing to another lake and a big meadow at Ramche, the tight amphitheatre of peaks in this area are very impressive and Rothang and Kabru on the Nepal/Border dominate the spectacular view. Overnight Ramche.
Day 17 To Dorongdin (3000M). Walk approx. 7hrs
We trek an easy trail through varieties of pine and rhododendron forests, descending and following Simbua Khola towards Dorongdin.
Day 18 To Sherpa Gaun (Yamphudim) (2080M). Walk approx. 8hrs.
The entire village is called Yamphudim but locals prefer to call it Sherpa Gaun. This is also one of the most challenging stages of the trek. Every year, there is a landslide in this area and usually we have to find our own trails. It is 3 hours of steep climbing and a very long descent that will take around 4 hours. The trail is not defined at all and requires patience and concentration.
Day 19 To Khesewa (1960m). Walk approx. 6/7hrs.
Today the trail climbs up along beautiful villages and the Kabeli Khola. Only a few sections of the trail are considered flat and here you will find some villages. We camp at a small village of Keshwa from where we still have splendid views over Kanchenjunga and Mount Yalung Kang.
Day 20 To Suketar (2300M). Walk approx 7/8hrs
Moderate hike to Suketar. On the way, we pass through farming terraces, local jungles of rhododendron, bamboo and other natural vegetation. We pass through Lali Kharka with picturesque multi ethnic villages. We will enjoy a farewell dinner party with our staff and we celebrate our successful trek to Kanchenjunga Base Camp and he high passes.
Day 21 Fly to Kathmandu
If the weather is clear, we have the opportunity to view some of the most impressive peaks of the Himalayan range as we take our flight back to Kathmandu. The afternoon is at leisure. Overnight hotel.
Day 22 Sightseeing in Kathmandu
This morning a sightseeing tour takes in the key attractions in and around Kathmandu. We will visit Pashupatinath and Boudhanath, returning to the hotel by 2pm. In the afternoon you may have time to explore Swayambhunath, Durbar Square, Patan or Bhaktapur, and the lesser-known towns that dot the valley on foot, by bicycle or trishaw. The area has an amazing range of fascinating highlights, whatever your interest. Excellent bookshops, extensive markets, and novelty and handicraft shops contrast with fantastic centers of cultural and spiritual significance - Kathmandu has more World Heritage sites than any other city in the world. Overnight hotel.
Day 23 In Kathmandu, trip concludes.
After breakfast, arrangements cease unless further ones have been made. Those people travelling by aircraft to other destinations will be transferred to the airport.