|Duration:||22 Days||Trip Code:||HGTNP-0173|
|Primary activity:||Climbing and Expedition||Secondary activity:||Trekking and Hiking,Cultural and Historical Tours|
|Group size:||2-12 people||Max-Altitude:||6,189m/20,305ft|
|Country:||Nepal||Transportation:||Private vehicle(s) and aeroplane|
|Arrival on:||Kathmandu, Nepal||Departure from:||Kathmandu, Nepal|
|Meals:||All meals during trekking and expedition. Breakfast in Kathmandu|
|Accomodation:||4-star hotel in Kathmandu, teahouses during trekking and tent during climbing|
Lobuche East and Island Peak Expedition combines ascending two peaks in the Everest Region. Lobuche East is probably one of the most challenging ‘trekkers peaks’ in the Everest region whereas Island Peak (6,189m) is the most popular. On your 22-day journey you will first trek to the Everest Base Camp and Kalapathhar, which will not only be a rewarding experience but it will also help you with acclimatization. Next, summit the Lobuche East Peak and descend down to ImjaKhola Valley for summiting the Island Peak.
Upon our arrival at the Tribhuwan International Airport (TIA) in Kathmandu, a representative from Himalayan Glacier will pick us up from the airport and take us to our hotel. After checking in, we may take a rest or visit Himalayan Glacier’s office. In the evening there will be a welcome dinner in a traditional Nepali Restaurant where we will be able to enjoy authentic Nepali cuisine. Overnight in Kathmandu.
Today after breakfast we begin our tour to several UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Kathmandu. We visit the historic Durbar Square, the sacred Hindu temple of Pashupatinath, the famous 'Monkey Temple' (Swayambhunath) and Buddhist shrine (Bouddhanath), which is also one of the largest stupas in the world. After the tour, we get our equipment checked by our climbing leader, get introduced to fellow participants, and discuss our trip at Himalayan Glacier’s office. Overnight in Kathmandu.
After breakfast, we will be taken to the domestic terminal of TIA for an early morning flight to Lukla. After flying above the breathtaking green and white mountains, we reach Tenzing-Hillary Airport at Lukla. This is one of the most beautiful air routes in the world culminating in a landing on a hillside surrounded by high mountains. Upon our arrival at Lukla, we meet remaining members of our climbing team. We begin our trek through the prosperous village of Lukla until we reach Phakding. To assist in acclimatization, we only have a short hike today. However, if interested in additional activities, we can take a side trip to a nearby monastery. Overnight in Phakding.
After breakfast we walk through beautiful pine forests and then along Dudh Koshi River ending our nature-filled journey at Namche Bazaar. After walking for almost over an hour, we come across the glistening Mt. Thamserku (6,608m) on our right and also experience the serenity of pine, fir and juniper forests throughout our journey. If the weather is clear, we may even catch a glimpse of Mt. Everest peering over the Lhotse-Nuptse ridge. We continue walking until we reach the entrance to Sagarmatha National Park, Namche Bazaar, the gateway to Mt. Everest and main trading centre of this region. This day we cross five suspension bridges, the last one also known as the Hillary Bridge being the highest. It is an uphill walk from Hillary Bridge to Namche Bazaar. Overnight in Namche Bazaar.
This is the day set aside for acclimatization. Health experts recommend that we stay active and move around even during the rest day instead of being idle. There are a few options set aside for this day. We can either stroll around Namche’s quaint villages or come in contact with the Sherpa people and their rich culture, or we can hike up to the Everest View Hotel and enjoy an up-close view of the mighty Everest. While in the Namche village or upon returning from the hike to the Everest View Hotel, trekkers may also visit the local museum containing exhibits displaying the area’s native flora and fauna as well as the history of the Mount Everest region.
For trekkers who want to hike for a little longer, a hike to Khumjung village (5-6 hours) may also be an option. While in the village we can visit the Edmund Hillary School and Khumjung Monastery (a monastery famous for housing the head of the Yeti!). Overnight in Namche Bazaar.
After breakfast, we trek towards Tengboche. It is an easy walk from Namche to Phunki. Upon reaching Phunki, we ascend towards Tengboche, a village that houses the very famous Tengboche monastery which is the largest monastery of the Everest region. Located amidst the Sagarmatha National Park (a UNESCO World Heritage Site of "outstanding universal value”), it is draped with the panoramic 360-degree view of the Himalayas, including Mt. Everest, Nuptse, Lhotse, Ama Dablam and Thamserku. The monastery opens at 3:pm so we reach there by three. And, if we are lucky we might just be able to witness a religious ceremony. Overnight in Tengboche.
We visit the beautiful Tengboche Monastery in the morning and take pictures of the amazing landscape surrounding it. Then we begin our trek by walking through lush forests of birch, conifers and rhododendrons on an easy path. This picturesque trail then dips down to Debuche, crossing the Imja River before climbing up to Pangboche. (We can either walk in the upper or lower Pangboche trails). We are most likely to choose the upper Pangboche trail as it provides a more pristine view of the Himalayas. We also visit the Pangboche monastery. From here, the walk is fairly moderate as we enter the Imja Valley. The valley gradually unfolds as we approach the confluence of the Lobuche River. We descend into the river and begin the climb up to Dingboche. Overnight in Dingboche.
We start the day with a gradual climb to Duglha at the end of the terminal moraine of the Khumbu Glacier. From here, we climb up a steep trail to Chupki Lhara, where we find an array of stones with prayer flags used as memorials to Scott Fischer (American mountaineer) and 10-time Everest submitter Babu Chiri Sherpa (Nepali mountain guide) who perished on a mission to climb Everest. Next, we continue to the Khumbu Glacier moraine and find ourselves facing several great peaks - Khumbutse, Lingtren, Pumori and Mahalangur Himal. The trail then eases off as we follow the valley to Lobuche. Overnight in Lobuche.
We take the trail to Everest Base Camp through the once vast Gorak Shep Lake. Continuing straight ahead, we come across the Indian army mountaineers' memorials. The path from here can be misleading; hence it is important that we follow our lead Sherpa diligently. The walk is strenuous due to thin air in the high altitude. We pass through rocky dunes, moraine and streams before reaching the Everest Base Camp. Upon reaching the Everest Base Camp, we see tents of mountaineers that stand out in bright colors against the monotony of gray surroundings (especially in the spring). Nuptse, Khumbuste and Pumori are the mountains we can view from the base camp. We get back to Gorak Shep for a good night's rest. Overnight in Gorak Shep.
We prepare for an early morning departure, amid pre-dawn darkness and cold temperatures (-10 to -14 C). Plus, there is always the potential for chilly winds which are quite common. Familiar peaks such as Lingtren, Khumbutse, and Changtse tower to the east even as Everest begins to reveal itself. But, it is upon reaching Kala Patthar that we get to see 360-degree up-close and formidable views of Mt. Everest. We take pictures, enjoy the magnificent mountain panorama, and then return back to Lobuche for a good night's rest. Overnight in Lobuche.
From Lobuche, we trek towards Lobuche base camp. After walking some distance on relatively flatter plane, the path to the Lobuche Base Camp gets steeper and rocky. We move forward along the Lobuche Glacier while enjoying great views of Ama Dablam, Cholatse, Pokalde, Thamserku, Kantega and other Himalayas. Overnight in Lobuche East Base Camp. (B,L,D)
Pre-Climb Training: Our guides will provide training on peak climbing techniques and the proper ways of using climbing gears such as the ice axe, climbing boots and crampons, harness, ascender, etc. The training will also include using ropes to go up and down. We strongly believe that the training experience will boost your confidence and climbing skills to increase the chances of scaling the summit as well as to fully enjoy the experience.
From Lobuche Base Camp, we continue on a rocky moraine path to reach the High Camp. Upon reaching the High Camp, we set up our camp, take lunch and rest. For the climb, we usually will be climbing on rock surface for up to around 5770m. After that, we climb on ice and use ropes when necessary. However, the use of the rope and the length depends upon the season and the crevasses. Fixed rope is used most of the times whereas man rope is used when required. The climbing leaders will decide what is best for when. Overnight in Lobuche East High Camp.
After breakfast, we retrace our steps to Dughla. Then we enter the Imja Khola valley at the beautiful village of Dingboche. We trek for a few more hours before reaching Chhukung which is the last settlement of the valley. We also notice small group of nomadic huts strategically located at the foot of the Imja glaciers. Chhukung is the point of departure of Island Peak base camp which also offers great views of Lhotse, Nuptse and AmaDablam. (B,L,D)Note: If we want to undertake the high Kongma La pass, we can follow another route via Khumbu Glacier to Kongma La Base Camp
After completingour expedition of the Lobuche East,we will be too tired to attempt Island Peak immediately. Therefore, this day is set aside as a rest day so that we get all the rest we need to begin our next expedition to Island Peak. However, if we prefer to keep ourselves busy then we can visit nearby places as well. Overnight in Chhukung.
The trek to Island Peak Base Camp is on a fairly steep trail. First, we climb south then turn east to the main line of the valley. We then walk on a winding path below the southern flank of the moraine from the Lhotse Glacier. Next, we continue walking on a pleasant trail along a streamside. The route to the AmphuLabtsa lies to the southeast. A crisscross route through the Imja and Lhotse glacier moraines leads to a wide valley flanking the SW side of Island Peak. Overnight at Island Peak Base Camp.
We wake up early today at around 1 to 2 am and have our breakfast before beginning our climb. It is important we reach the summit before noon because in the afternoon the strong winds in the high lands might become a barrier for a successful summit. The trail moves up beyond the base camp for several hundred meters before striking off the steep hillside. Initially sandy, the path soon turns to grass before becoming boulder strewn. As we climb up the hill, we will see that the slope narrows and the trail enters a steep rock channel. We climb the rock gully. This is not difficult but there are several short rock steps to climb before we emerge on the right side of the gully. The route then follows a ridgeline, which leads to an exhilarating and exposed traverse onto the snout of the summit glacier. We need to rope up for the glacier as it contains several crevasses. The guides will fix a rope wherever necessary. A steep snow slope leads us onto the summit ridge. After enjoying the summit views, and taking pictures, we descend all the way to Island Peak Base Camp where some of our crew are waiting for us. We celebrate on our successful Island Peak climb.
Today’s walk will be a much easier as we descend to the lower altitudes. Following the same route back through the wide valley of KhumbuKhola, we pass through the beautiful Sherpa villages Orsho and Shomare. We can also take a different trail to visit the Gompa in Upper Pangboche, which is believed to be the oldest in the Khumbu region or take the regular trail to reach Pangboche. Pangboche is a scenic village surrounded by Everest to its north, AmaDablam, Thamserku, and Kangtaiga to the east, the Kongde range to the south and the ImjaTseriver flowing through the wide fertile valley.
From Pangboche we retrace our steps down to the ImjaKhola and up through the forest to Tengboche. If interested, we can also visit nuns at the Tengboche monastery. After lunch at Tengboche, we continue through the hillside blanketed by rhododendron and juniper trees. After crossing the bridge over the DudhKoshi River, our trail follows the DudhKoshi gorge descending rapidly through the pine forests before reaching Sansa. We keep a lookout for wildlife such as mountain goats, snow leopards, colorful pheasants, etc., while passing through the forest. After passing a chorten, we reach the army camp at Namche Bazaar. Overnight in Namche Bazaar.
The trail descends steeply downward so we need to walk cautiously as our shaky legs continuously battle the rocky terrain. After crossing the suspension bridges over the fast flowing DudhKoshi and its tributaries, the trail becomes more level and natural. After our arrival in Lukla, we stretch those sore legs and recall the experiences of the last couple of weeks. Overnight in Lukla.
We catch an early morning flight to Kathmandu after our long mountain journey. After reaching Kathmandu, we can take a rest or do some souvenir shopping. If we want to explore any other areas of Kathmandu, we may do that today. Our guides can help you with both souvenirs shopping or sightseeing. There will be a farewell dinner in the evening to celebrate the climbers’ successful summit of the Island peak. Overnight in Kathmandu.
Your adventure in Nepal comes to an end today! There is nothing to do but trade emails with your travel companions and organize your photos. A representative from Himalayan Glacier will take you to the airport, approximately 3 hours before your scheduled flight. On your way home you'll have plenty of time to plan your next adventure in the wonderful country of Nepal.