Jhamsikhel, Lalitpur Kathmandu, Nepal
US Office: 35 Evergreen Lane Middlebury VT 05753
The best off-the-beaten path trekking in the world, soon to be "discovered."
21 to 25 Days From US$ 2800 per person
Up early, and drive west along the Prithvi highway, named for the Gorkha king of the Shah dynasty who conquered Kathmandu in 1768. Turn off the main road at Dhading and drive to Arughat Bazaar./p>
Up the Buri (or Budhi) Gandaki River valley all day, headed almost due north. Ganesh Himal to the east and Gorkha Himal to the west are your companions today. Tonight's stop is at Almara, in a particularly steep part of the river valley.
Continue north along the Buri Gandaki to Labubesi
You're beginning to gain significant altitude now, and the steep river valley opens up to give spectacular views of Himalchuli and Manaslu behind. Stay at Tatopani.
he land is changing as you gain altitude - almost a mile high now - and the vegetation shows the change. Camp at Jagat, where you'll really begin to feel like your in the middle of the great mountains. Jagat is the entry point to the 'restricted area' where you'll need a different permit.
Today you pass from Hindu Nepal to Buddhist areas. You'll see that the people, architecture, and religious symbols all change. Prayer walls made up of stones engraved with ancient prayers will be your way markers until you come down from the high pass. Bear east of the river after Jagat and trek to Lokpa.
Trek up the Shar Khola river valley to Chumling
Gain some altitude to Chhokangparo at 3,000 m. / 10,000 feet.
Visit the Milarepa Cave and Rachen Gompa at Lamagaon, then trek to the twin villages of Nile and Chhule
Trek up to Mu Gompa at Chho Syong, 3,700 m / 12,400 ft.
Trek down and stay at Rachen Gompa
Trek down and stay at Dumje
Climb the vaeely wall up to Gompa Lungdong (3,200 m. / 10,700 ft.)
Trek west to link up with the main Manaslu trail at Dyang.
After returning to the river at Dyang, take a short day to Bihi.
A relatively level day, to Bho Gaon.
An uphill day today, as you begin to gain altitude toward the Larkya La pass. Pass several monasteries and stay in Sama Gaon (11,300'). The Gompa here is worth a visit.
Another steep day, to the village of Larkya Bazaar at almost 13,000 feet. This is the Tibetan plateau, and most of the people here are recent refugees from the Chinese invasion of Tibet.
The climb to the high pass, the Larkya La, begins today. Because of the altitude allow two days, with a possible Bivvy night. Up very early, and set off over the Larkya La (17,100 feet). It's a very difficult climb, and the initial part of the descent on the other side is also tough. You'll feel a great sense of accomplishment tonight at Larad!
Downhill now, following the Dudh Khola (Milk River). Its name comes from the frantic froth into which the steep descent and rocky riverbed whip the water. Camp at Sangwro Kharka, at about 11,000 feet.
You are approaching the heavily traveled Annapurna Circuit trail - but tonight's stop Tilje shows only a few signs of it.
Trek down to the Marsyangdi Khola and the main Annapurna trail. Follow the river north to Bagarchap (7,000 feet). It's a short day, to give you a little margin of time.
(Turn south here to walk out, just as in the Around Manaslu - 17 to 21 days itinerary. But this sample itinerary continues on around the Annapurna Circuit.)
Stay with the river, which turns west as you go, and gain altitude steadily to Chame (8,000 feet)
A longish but pleasant day, still following the river, to Pisang (11,000 feet).
Another long but level day that's really spectacular, to Manang (11,600 feet).
A short day to Yak Kharka to give you a little time margin and to approach the Thorong La pass well-rested.
Up to Thorong Phedi (Phedi means “foot of the hill”) at almost 15,000 feet.
Up and over Thorong La and down to Muktinath.
Schedule a day of margin. Muktinath is an interesting, ancient pilgrimage site.
Trek down to Jomsom, the district headquarters.
Fly Jomsom – Pokhara