Saribung Peak & Upper Mustang BooK Now

Upper Mustang
  •   Duration: 28Days
  •   Activities: Climbing
  •   Country: Nepal
  •   Trip Grade: STRENUOUS

Overview

Here is the story of Upper Mustang-In the 1950s with the political changes taking place in Tibet and the fact that the spiritual and political leader of Tibet, the Dalai Lama went to live in exile in India, the events taking place in Tibet had some effects in Nepal. Group on Tibetans organized a resistance movement against the Chinese, and in this movement Nepali territory having eased of movement into Tibet were quite frequently used as base. The then government of Nepal, in order to have friendly relation with its neighbour, had to take action to ensure that Nepali land was not used in any way in these resistance movement. In order to make the policy effective, those areas of Nepal from where there were easy accesses into Tibet were sealed for foreigners and that led to the isolation of certain areas of the country for people from the outside world. Good or bad, one of the result of this isolation was that the tradition and culture of these areas remained unchanged over the decades.

The village of Phoo/Nar these days with only about 39 houses occupied and the neighbouring village of Naar are among some of those villages which remained isolated for some time. Foreigner could go there only when accompanied by a liaison officer from the government. Since the last couple of years, the government has now made these areas flexible for foreigners and people can go trekking into these areas but require special permit.

Saribung Expedition Trek is newly explored Trekking routes in 2006. It is challenging and very popular trekking trail with beaten track and difficult pass. Saribung is located in remote parts of Upper Mustang region of Damodar Himal, close to the border of China (Tibet).  Where rugged landscapes and ancient culture merge in a very unique interpretation of lands forgotten by time. On this stunning traverse from Mustang we cross numerous high passes including Saribung Pass (6042m) and emerge to the Annapurna region, The highlight is the beautiful landscapes enjoying scenery, religions, geographic elevation and will cross the challenging passes near Mt. Saribung it is a must for keen photographers who will appreciate the scale and grandeur of the high plateaus and solitude this region has to offer. The trekkers and climbers really enjoy its fantastic and picturesque views of Himalaya and beyond. During the trekking, trekkers meet different villages, monasteries, culture and religion of Tibetan style every day. The main important thing is spectacular mountain scenery, which will see from the top of Mt. Saribung,

For mountaineering, it is easy to do Expedition but there are many passes with ice and creases in between the Damodar Kunda region and Nar-Phu valley. The trek starts from one place to another with great sceneries, cultures, religion and geographical variations. Hence trekkers can enjoy the fantastic and picturesque views of diversity in this region.

Saribung Trek can be done in anti-clockwise for which the trek start from Phu and then ascend to Saribung pass and enter in the Mustang “Hidden Valley” and return to Jomsom or clockwise for which the trek start from Jomsom and follow Upper Mustang trail and descend to Nar-Phu valley and end at Besisahar.

The expedition to climb Saribung is not just a mountaineering expedition. Even if the mountain is not climbed for any reason, just the trek to the base camp of the mountain and trek via Phoo and over Damodar kunda to  Yara  Upper  Mustang and finally  Reach Lo manthang Mini Tibet kingdom of Nepal. Into the Jomsom where we will take a small aircraft to Pokhara in the kaligandaki valley is a fantastic trek one can do.

Day 1/2:  Kathmandu (1360m)

Upon arrival in Kathmandu, you are met at the airport and transferred to your hotel. Our airport representative will be waiting for you in the arrival hall, located after passing out of the customs area. Look out for the Himalayan Hikers Expedition signboard. The drive from the airport to the hotel is around 20 minutes. A briefing given by our group leader is scheduled for the late afternoon. He will discuss our trekking program and co-ordinate any last minute arrangements. A visit to Thamel gives you a chance to do some last minute shopping. Later, we are supplied with our Trek Pack and departure information for tomorrow. The evening is free, but usually our tour leader will organize an evening meal (optional) at one of Kathmandu’s fine Nepali restaurants. Alternatively you can enjoy a dinner at the hotel.

 

Day 3:   Bhulbule (860m) (Driving time: approx 10 hours)

We depart from Kathmandu early in the morning for the drive to Bhulbule, via Dumre and Besishahar, where we commence the trek. The drive is quite spectacular with mountain views of the Ganesh and Manaslu Ranges, the tumbling white waters of the Trisuli River and the terraced hillsides. We will stop for lunch along the way. From our lodge, the views of the mountains are spectacular, with Himalchuli (7893m) dominating the skyline. Our full crew will assemble at Bhulbule.

 

Day 4:  Jagat (1290m) (Trekking time: approx 6½ hours)

From Bhulbule we follow the west bank of the Marsyandi River to the village of Syange (1136m) after lunch

In the afternoon we continue up the west bank of the Marsyandi River, starting to climb high above the river now, to the small village of Jagat, where we will stay in a lodge overnight. Jagat is a Tibetan village that once served as a customs post on the old trading route from Tibet

 

Day 5: Dharapani (1890m) (Trekking time: approx 7 hours)

Today the vegetation changes to rhododendron and pine forest and the valley becomes narrower and steeper. We soon cross the river on a large suspension bridge from where the trail ascends quite steeply and the river tumbles through a maze of large boulders. After reaching the top of the zigzag climb, amazingly the valley widens out to reveal the village of Tal, which nestles amongst the fields of barley, wheat and potatoes. We have now entered the district of Manang and take lunch in one of the many fine hotels here. The afternoon’s walk follows the river valley, crossing back to the west bank before gradually ascending to Dharapani where we end our trekking day, again in a lodge.

 

Day 6: Koto (2685m) (Trekking time: approx 5 hours)

The valley now turns westward through dramatic fir and pine forests. After half an hour we reach Bagarchap (2760m), the first village on the trek with typical Tibetan architecture. Here we may observe firewood stacked on the roofs in preparation for the long, hard winters. The village marks the transition between the lower, wet valleys and the higher, more arid area of the Manang valley. There are excellent views of Lamjung Himal, Annapurna II (7937m) and Annapurna III (7555m) up the valley. Down valley to the east, Manaslu and Peak 29 soar magnificently to the skies. Leaving Bagarchap, we cross a small wooden bridge beside a beautiful waterfall and ascend to Temang (2360m) for lunch. The trail then continues easily for about an hour and a half to the police check post at Koto where we stay in our last lodge accommodation for some time. Tomorrow, we will leave the main Annapurna trail and head north up the Phu Khola, whose deep gorge we can see as we enter Kote.

Day 7: Meta (3480m) (Trekking time: approx 8 hours)

Spectacular as it has been so far, we now commence an even more impressive part of our expedition. From Koto we complete the necessary formalities at the police check post and then cross the suspension bridge to follow the Nar Phu Khola into a narrow and forested valley. The trail has been improved in recent years, but there is certainly an aura about this particular section of the trek. Having spent the previous days on the well travelled Annapurna Circuit, getting off the beaten track rewards us with some stunning scenery. We take lunch at a suitable place in the forest with water. In the afternoon we continue to follow the river and, after a final stiff climb, we make camp in the meadows at Meta. Meta is an abandoned village used as the base camp for expeditions attempting to climb Kanguru Himal (6981m).  Today is a long day and our first taste of significant altitude, but we are rewarded with fine views of the Annapurna range to the south, Pisang Peak to the west and across the valley towards the village of Na.

 

Day 8: Khyang (3720m) (Trekking time: approx 5 hours)

From Meta we head north following a trail high above the Nar Phu Khola. The forest has disappeared and the terrain is now Trans Himalayan, dry and arid. We soon enter the Phu Valley and the strata of the rocks on the opposite side of the valley are tinged purple and wildly twisted by time. The trail contours through the valley and we will take a break at the abandoned fields and houses of Jhunum to enjoy this fabulous valley. There are great views of the west face of Kanguru Himal (6981m) along the way. After Jhunum, we descend to a tributary stream for lunch amongst juniper trees. In the afternoon we have a short climb to Chakku, another abandoned village, before we cross another tributary stream and drop into the Mailu Khola and the summer settlement of Khyang (3720m). We camp close to the village with spectacular mountains views around us.

 

Days 9-10: Phu (3980m) (Trekking time: approx 4½ hours)

The day starts with an exciting traverse on a dramatic trail cut into the cliff high above the valley. After a short distance we zigzag down to the Phu Khola and spend the next few hours following the stream as the valley narrows. There are a few ascents and descents and a short section, where again, the trail is cut into the cliff. Soon the valley seems to come to an end with a tall rock pillar seemingly blocking the way. The trail passes through a narrow opening to right which leads to a steep stone staircase to the gated entrance to the village of Phu. To the left the ruins of an old fort stand guard over the trail and the way ahead for the next few hundred yards can be described as ‘airy’ with sections of the trail again cut into the cliff. After a short descent the valley opens out and passes a series of mani walls before reaching the houses of Phu, which are stacked above each other on the left hand side of the valley. Phu sees few trekkers and climbers and we will spend a further day here to explore the nearby monastery and village and to acclimatise. Phu will be the last settlement we visit before we head off into the wilderness for the next two weeks.

 

Day 11: Nogora Kharka (4435m) (Trekking time: approx 4 hours)

We cross the Phu Khola, contour around below the monastery and then climb gradually,with great views of Himlung Himal (7126) to the east. After an hour or so the trail reaches a small pass at 4010m. From here we follow the right bank of the Phu Khola, passing a number of chortens as we gradually ascend with great views of the Tibetan bordermPeaks to the north. We enter the Jhyamdani Khola and descend to the deserted village of Nagoru Kharka where we will camp. This is a short day because campsites and water are scarce from now on and because we do not want to climb too high each day, to ensure that we acclimatize well.There are many blue sheep in this area, so keep your eyes open.

Day 12: Lunak Kharka (4840m)

(Trekking time: approx 4½ hours)

From here onwards the trail is poor. After traversing the steep hillsides for a short while the trail drops to the river. There is no bridge here, so depending on the water level, we will need to search for a crossing point or it may be boots off and wade knee-deep across the narrow river. After crossing to the west bank there is a steep climb up the valley to the summer grazing pastures of Tsharin (4630m) where we will want to take a rest break, then onwards on narrow yak trails until we make camp in a meadow with full views of Chakku and Lagula peaks to the north and Himlung to the east.

 

Days 13: Japanese Base Camp (5055m)

(Trekking time: approx 3 hours)

We are now very close to the Tibetan border. Today’s short walk takes us over a small pass at 5010m with magnificent views of Bhrikuti and Chaku Himal then down to our camp located high on the lateral moraine of the Bhatchauk Glacier. This camp is the last position for running water. The camp is surrounded by wild mountain terrain and there is a true feeling of being in a very remote wilderness location. We will use this camp for rest, organization and acclimatization to prepare for the climb ahead. On our rest day we will day we will update our rope skills and check crampons, provisions and porter loads for the days ahead. While we are doing that, some of our crew will carry initial loads up to our next camp.

 

Day 14: Bhrikuti Base Camp (5300m)

(Trekking time: approx 3½ hours)

Today is a bit different to previous days, as we cross the glacier and ascend to our next camp. Initially we climb and descend the lateral moraine then cross the rubble strewn glacier.There is no trail so walking on the screens can mean one step forward and two steps back! However, the scenery is absolutely stunning and more than makes up for the effort. We camp under the shadow of Bhrikuti Himal’s southern face, near a small frozen lake. Looking up the valley there are high peaks on all sides and we get our first view of Saribung Himal.While some of our Sherpa crew scouts the glacier ahead for a location our high camp.

 

Day 15: Saribung High Camp (5720m)

(Trekking time: approx 3-4 hours)

From camp we follow the moraines onto the glacier. After an hour or so the glacier splits into two valleys, the right hand valley heading towards the Kunlun Pass (6035m) and our trail bearing left into the Bharchauk Cwm. This is a magnificent amphitheatre of snow covered mountains where only a handful of people have ever been before. We camp on the ice with Saribung Himal towering above us. We will reach camp by early afternoon, so try to relax; we will have an early start tomorrow!

 

Day 16:  Saribung Summit (6328m) and Moraine Camp (5745m)

(Climbing time: approx 9 hours)

Today we ascend Saribung and then descend across the pass that leads to Mustang and Damodar Khund. We will leave early in the morning, climbing the slopes to the Saribung La (6000m). These slopes are not steep but we will rope up from camp as we will need to ascend carefully through the crevassed route. Depending on snow conditions it will take two to three hours to reach the pass. From here the slope gets a little steeper and the summit of Saribung should be reached in a further two hours. The views are sensational looking north to Tibet and to the west to our audacious route back to Jomsom via Damodar Khund. From the summit we retrace our steps back to the pass for the descent to the western watershed. Whilst we are climbing our Sherpa team will secure the route and assist the porters across the pass. The descent to our camp on the moraines north of the pass should take a further two hours or so.

Day 17: Damodar Kund (4975m) (Trekking time: approx 8 hours)

Now we head down the glacier with magnificent views of Khumjungar Himal (6759m) and Chhiv Himal

(6591m) dominating the skyline views. The trail is good to start with, winding past spectacular penitents of ice on the glacier, but then it becomes rough going on screens until we reach the frozen lake at the snout of the glacier.  After the lake, we steadily descend on narrow trails until we reach Damodar Khund in the afternoon. The lake is a particularly holy site for Hindu pilgrims who make the arduous journey during the month of August for the annual full moon festival held here. We continue to an excellent campsite near a small stream about half an hour past the lakes.

 

Day 18: Pharse Khola (4820m) (Trekking time: approx 5½ hours)

Because we are now on the pilgrim trail the track improves, except for the first section, which has been destroyed by a massive landslide and needs to be circumvented.  After that, we climb steadily in a spectacular brown landscape to a high pass at 5495m.  Clouds permitting, there are views of Dhaulagiri (8167m) to the south and the now familiar peaks of the Damodar Himal behind us. From the pass we plunge dramatically down to our campsite in the bed of the Pharse Khola.

 

Day 19: Yara (3605m) (Trekking time: approx 8 hours)

From Pharse Khola we climb steeply westwards to cross an un-named 5300m pass, and then drop down a frozen river to the pilgrim huts at Ghumna Thanti. Then it’s over one more pass before we begin a long descent towards the unique villages of the Trans Himalayan Mustang region. The scenery is dry and arid and the villages reflect a Tibetan lifestyle from a bygone era. When we reach the river upstream from Yara, we have the opportunity to visit the ancient gompa at Luri, famous for its spectacular location amongst rock pinnacles and its 14th century paintings.  Yara is about an hour further on and we will camp in the courtyard of a large house in the village.

 

Days 20/ Lo Manthang (Trekking time: approx 4 hours)

Trek to Lo Manthang Explore the oldest cities n Monastery, Cave mini Tibet kingdom of Nepal.

 

Days 21/ Exploration Day at Lo-Manthang (3700m)

A day is less to explore this outstanding historical and cultural centre. Kimling and Phuwa are interesting as well as the Gompa of Namgyal serve as an important monastery of the local community and also as a local court. Hike to Tingkhar, a village of around 40 houses, the last main village to the northwest of Lo-Mangthang is picturesque. In the eastern valley nestles the village of Chosar; also rich in Gompas, this valley is the main trading route to Lhasa. Visit the Tall Champa Lakhang “God house”, the red Thugchen Gomba, Chyodi Gomba and the Entrance Hall which are the main magnetize of lo Mangthang Trip. Also you may have visit the four- story building of the Raja’s Durbar (Royal Palace) where the Mustang’s King offers Tibetan tea as his hospitality. There are many places to explore as the surrounding panoramic views of the Himalaya, where you may not tire to.

 

Day 22: Lo-Manthang trekking to Drakmar (3810m) (Trekking time: approx 5 hours)

Instead of following the trail south to Tsarang, turn southwest along an indistinct trail that passes the irrigated fields of the city. After Lo Gekar, the trail climbs steeply to a cairn on a pass at 4000m, offering a last glimpse of Lo Manthang. Cross the Chogo La (4325m), the highest point on this trek. The trail makes descend beside a stream visiting ancient Ghar Gompa more than 1200 years old and meet the Guru Rimponche. Gompa is famous for its rock paintings andthe legend of fulfilling our good wishes. Climb to a ridge, the route crosses some alpine meadows to a crest and then drops down a steep eroded gully overshadowed by red rock towers to Drakmar.

Day 23: Drakmar trek to Ghiling (3806m) (Trekking time: approx 5 hours)


Today we continue down the valley to Ghiling in dusty and windy trail. The trail leads passing through the arid plateau and crops field in between, the walks may not be pleasant on the back as we suffer the wind on face in Kali Gandaki wind valley. The landscapes are deserts types offering the majestic views of Mt Dhaulagiri and Nilgiri. At the late afternoon travels around the surrounding of Ghiling village.

 

Day 24: Ghiling trek to Chhuksang (3050m) (Trekking time: approx 5 hours)

The path trekking back to Chhuksang is easy working down enjoying the Tibetan life style and culture. You will have wonderful scenery and the amazing views of Nilgiri, Tilicho and others tremendous Himalayan peaks. Stay overnight at hotel.

 

Day 25: Chhuksang trekking to Jomsom (2700m) (Trekking time: approx 5 hours)


Today we walk down to the southern border of the Mustang region to Kagbeni. We gradually get down through old salt trade route; the stupa, monasteries and chortens (Buddhist shrine) are the main attractions of the day. After having a lunch at Kagbeni we will head to Jomsom following the Kali Gandaki River Bank with an easy and flat work. Continue the trail down on the stony path facing Tukuche, Dhaulagiri and Nilgiri. Explore the headquarter city and have your over night stay here.

 

Day 26: Fly back to Pokhara, 20 minutes flight

In the early morning we take a spectacular flight back to Pokhara and arrive in the mid-morning. We stay at the Hotel Barahi, which is located close to the lakeside. After a welcomed shower, we have the rest of the day free to relax by the pool or do some exploring. The lakeside area has good shopping opportunities and internet cafés. It is worthwhile hiring a boat for a row out on the lake (Phewa Tal), which is the second largest in Nepal. Pokhara has an interesting old area as well as an elaborate Hindu temple and a Buddhist monastery. There are various small museums scattered around town including the International Mountain Museum, which is well worth a visit. In the evenings there is the option of dining out at some of the many lakeside restaurants.

 

Day 27: Kathmandu (1360m)

After breakfast we transfer back to the airport for our flight to Kathmandu. On arrival in Kathmandu we are met and transferred back to our hotel. The rest of the day is free for shopping or further sightseeing. Located in the south of the city, Patan is also worth a visit with its own Durbar Square full of historic structures and statues of past kings. Our final night in Kathmandu gives us a chance to go out on the town and enjoy a final dinner with our travelling companions and new-found friends.

 

Day 28: Kathmandu (1360m) Fly back home.

Our trip ends today after breakfast and those leaving immediately are transferred out to the airport for your flight home or your onward journey.

What is included?

  • All airport/hotel transfers within Nepal
  • Accomodation in Kathmandu with bed and breakfast basis
  • Flight from pokhara to Kathmandu.
  • Transportation enrolled for sightseeing and transfers
  • All meals on trek and Climbing periods.
  • Accommodation throughout the trek
  • All trekking and climbing permits
  • Experienced and English speaking trekking/climbin guides
  • Trekking and teahouse arrangements on full board basis on trek/Climbing duration
  • All your climbing gears ( ascender,descender,ice-axe,figure 8,helmate)
  • Group gears and supplies ( ropes,ice screws,snow bars)
  • Insurance for all Nepalese staffs
  • All camping equipments (kitchen tent,dinning tent,toilet tent,table,chair and kitchen utensils) for our clients and Nepalese staffs
  • Base camp crew
  • Emergency equipment like medical oxygen, Gamow bag,comprehensive medical kit, etc
  • Satellite Phone incase of emergency
  • All government taxes and agency service charge
  • Sherpa Holidays' duffel Bag for the trek
  • Sleeping Bag and Down Jacket (Puffy jacket)

What is not included?

  • Personal trekking gears
  • International roundtrip airfare to and from Kathmandu
  • Lunch and evening meals in the city(and also in the case of early return from mountain than the scheduled itinerary)
  • Extra night accommodation in Kathmandu because of early arrival, late departure, early return from mountain(due to any reason) than the scheduled itinerary
  • Nepal Visa fee
  • Tips for Guides and other staffs
  • Personal communications (Satellite phone, phone, fax, email)
  • Personal expenses (phone calls, laundry, bar bills, battery recharge, bottle water, shower, heater, etc.)
  • Personal travel /medical/cancellation/rescue insurance
  • Any rescue costs or costs of early departure from the expedition
  • Helicopter or charter flight

Equipment List

NOTE:

You can bring your personal clothing if you already have them with you,if not it’s worth buying all below mentioned clothing and equipments here in Kathmandu in good rates and your guide will help you with it.You will have plenty of time before the trek to buy stuffs in Kathmandu(thamel).

PERSONAL EQUIPMENTS FOR TREKKING

TREKKING

  • Fleece beanie
  • sun glasses
  • Chapstick / Sunscreen
  • Face mask or Scarf
  • Hand towel
  • Wind stopper / waterproof top and bottom
  • Cold weather down jacket below waist
  • Fleece jacket and trouser
  • Trekking trouser
  • T-Shirts(short or long sleeves) dry fit is better
  • Polypropylene thermal tops and bottom, at least 2pairs,
  • Wind stopper and fleece gloves
  • Socks and under wears (expect not to be able to wash at least for week)
  • Trekking boot (covering ankle, double check the size, foot swell up after a long walk)
  • Snow Gaiter (optional)
  • Running shoe or sandal for camps
  • Head torch
  • Personal medical kit (Gastrointestinal and Respiratory disease are common)
  • Water Bottle/Camel Pak
  • Trekking / Ski pole (optional. Handy for anyone with knee problem)
  •  Spare batteries for Camera andflash light. Check charging facility along your journey
  •  Day pack  Minimum25L with side pocket for water bottle

 

MOUNTAINEERING EQUIPMENT ONLY FOR THE CLIMBING GROUP.

 

 

  •  All equipments as in trekking equipment list except 25L day pack. Need a 40L+ day pack.
  •  Snow Gaiter (compulsory)
  •  Snow Goggles
  •  Head torch
  •  Thick socks at least 3 pairs
  • Gloves, thin thermal layer and thick down or acrylic filled wind and waterproof outer layer
  • Wind stopper Top /Wind stopper bottom
  • Ruck-Sack minimum 40L+, should have loop to hold Ice-Axe, pole and side pocket to hold water bottle

 

 (Personal climbing equipments which will be provided by Sherpa Holidays

 

  • Harness:  Black Diamond on high quality
  • karabiners: Two pieces Screw Gate “D” Shaped and two plain
  • Tape Sling: Two meters 1inch wide tape sling with free ends
  • Ice-Axe: Choice depends on use. Generally length between your ankle and finger tips on stretched body (60cm to 70cm).This is the choice of shaft length to go for.
  • Climbing boots
  • Crampons: Quick clip on and release design having detachable anti balling plate and a size to fit your boot.
  • Jumar /Ascenders: This is a device for climbing up on a rope and is a must in steep climbing section.
  • Descender: This is a device to climb down a rope safely. Figure of eight and ATC are other names.
  • Sleeping bag: Good sleeping bag of 80% – 90% down, 1000gm filled to use above base camp & normal trek,
  • Down Jacket: A good down filled jacket to use above base camp n normal trek.
  • Duffel bag : trekking/Mountaineering Basics 85 litter water proofs.