upper-dolpo-extensive-trek
Destination Dolpa, Nepal
Category Trekking
Activities Upper Dolpo Extensive Trek
Difficulty Moderate
Duration 25 Days
Group Size Minimum two to Maximum Fifteen
Best Season March-May, September-November

Dolpo is also called “Ba Yul” or the Hidden valley is a land of mystery, scenery and peace. Surrounded by Dhaulagiri and Tibet from south and north, The Dolpo region is the natural embodiment of high passes, rare flora and fauna and sweeping vistas. The medicinal plant, Yarchagumba (Coerdiopsis sinensis) a type of wild mushroom is found in abundance in this region. Extracts from Yarchagumba is believed to significantly improve health and fitness. This trekking is for combination of natural and cultural phenomena which is enriched by the traditional Tibetan cultural heritage. It is a rain shadow area and was opened in 1991 for trekking. The whole trekking areas in this region stretches through and around Arun River whose origin dates back to prehistoric period. The Arun valley is one of the most beautiful regions to trek in Nepal.

Dolpo is protected by Shey-Phoksundo National Park. It lies to the north of the Dhaulagiri Range bordering the Tibetan Plateau. Here one can find a well-preserved eco-system of plants and wildlife, including the blue sheep and the elusive snow leopard. The view of Kanjiroba peak, Phoksumdo Lake, and the Dhauligiri massif is one of the most rewarding moments of this trek. A visit to the Phoksumdo Gompa – dedicated to the ancient Bonpo religion, local to Dolpo and Tibet, is a memorable experience.

The Upper Dolpo region is another remote hidden destination in far west where Nepal's most tranquil and natural beauty is still unexplored. The home of herbal land, unspoiled trans-Himalayan culture, Buddhist monuments, and unique human civilization at high altitude is worth a visit. Trekking around the Dolpo region is an unforgettable journey in every visitor's life. Observing different rain shadow landscapes with stunning mountain views, wild flowers, Himalayan blue sheep, snow leopards, and huge birds Himalayan griffon. The Upper Dolpo is the home of the Bhotiya and Sherpa people. It's difficult to grow crops there, which makes life difficult for the local people. They depend on barley as sole crop. The stalwart yak is a vital source of food, transport and dung fuel. They also trade salt for grain with those from far away Hurikot and Jumla to compensate their dwindling winter supply of food.

Itinerary Overview

Day One: Fly from Kathmandu to Nepalganj
Day Two: Fly early morning to Juphal. Trek to Dunai.
Day Three: Trek to Chepka
Day Four: Trek to Renje
Day Five: Trek to Ringmo
Day Six: Rest and exploration.
Day Seven: Trek to Chunemba Jungle
Day Eight: Trek to Lar Tsa (High Camp)
Day Nine: Trek to Mendok Din
Day Ten: Trek to Shey Gompa
Day Eleven: Rest and Exploration day.
Day Twelve: Trek to Namgung. Time: Seven and half hours.
Day Thirteen: Trek from Namgung to Karang which takes almost six hours.
Day Fourteen: Trek from Karang to Mugaon and it takes approximately seven and half hours.
Day Fifteen: Trek from Mugaon to Shimen which takes almost eight and half hours.
Day Sixteen: Trek from Shiment to Tinje and it takes about eight hours.
Day Seventeen: Trek from Tinje to Rakpa which takes approximately eight hours.
Day Eighteen: Trek from Rakpa to Chharka and it takes almost eight hours.
Day Nineteen: Trek from Chharka to Norbulung and it takes about seven hours.
Day Twenty: Trek from Norbulung to Sangda Phedi and it takes approximately eight hours.
Day Twenty-One: Trek from Sangda Phedi to Sangda which takes about Nine hours.
Day Twenty-Two: Trek from Sangdo to Dhagarjun and it takes about Nine hours.
Day Twenty-Three: Trek from Dhagarjun to Jomson and fly to Pokhara
Day Twenty-Four: Drive back to Kathmandu

 

Note: We customize itinerary as per your interest to manage your specific requirements.

Day 01: Fly from Kathmandu to Nepalganj

A short, scenic flight lands in Nepalgunj, which lies in the southwest part of the Terai, on the Nepal-India border. Once you check in to the hotel, you can go and have a look around the Bageshwari Temple. Being on the border, it is a famous trading hub and is always bustling with the traders from Nepal, India, and Tibet as well.

Day 02: Fly early morning to Juphal. Trek to Dunai.

Due to the high winds that cover the valley after around 10 am, the flights that run from Dolpo are pretty early in the morning.  From Dunai, you start on the short walk from to Dunai, past green meadows and a few houses. You camp here and spend the afternoon exploring this busy town.

Day 03: Trek to Chepka

You head west once you’ve passed the suspension bridge, and walk on a level path along the bank of the Thulo Bheri to Suli Gaad. Following its eastern bank, you run by several teashops all the way to Kal Rupi, and then on to Raktang. You trek past numerous goths and horse pastures over a ridge to the rough stone houses of Jyalhasa. From here, the trail moves up and down through grassy lands to Rahagoan and Parela, on a high ridge. Then the trail descends on a rocky path to Chepka, which consists of a collection of interconnected shops, beverage stalls and lodges.

Day 04: Trek to Renje

You continue keeping the river close, and climb over a small ridge to the west side. You then return to the eastern side near a camping ground of a national park. You then hike up on a dyke full of rocks and sticks, and go through several ups and downs across forests of firs and larches. Continuing upstream to a bridge, you reach Renje.

Day 05: Trek to Ringmo

The way gets narrower and steeper as you climb over a ridge. You then descend to a wooden bridge, and continue till the Suli Gaad joins with Pungmo Khola. You hike up amidst big cedar trees to Palam. At the Southern end of the village is the entrance for Shey Phoksundo National Park.

After completing the security cheeks, and document examination, you head on following a steep sandy way. You trek on yet another steep switchback to a ridge, which offers spectacular views of a high waterfall and several mountains. You then climb gently to Ringmo valley, a pretty settlement of flat-roofed stone houses. You camp in a camping ground on a river bank, which is further North down the valley.

Day 06: Rest and exploration.

You take the trail along the Phoksundo lake to the white Pal Sentan Thasoon Chholing gompa, which is supposed to be vears 60 years old. There are five other private Gompas near the lake. The dusty Buddhist paintings and statues reflect the animistic elements of the Bon-Po religion.  The iconographic artifacts and religious practices are truly fascinating.

Day 07: Trek to Chunemba Jungle

Today’s trail is pretty thrilling, especially on some places where it just wooden planks supported by pegs driven into the rocks. You cross a stream, and climb to a crest at 4060m for a spectacular view of the lake with the snowy peaks of Sonam Kang in the background. You walk down through birches and blue pines to the westernmost edge of the lake. The route now heads west up a long a wide valley, where you follow an indistinct trail marked by thorn bushes and scrub trees, marshes and tributaries of the Phoksundo Khola.

Day 08: Trek to Lar Tsa (High Camp)

Inititally, you simply walk on a flat path which then heads up gradullay. You cross the Phroksumndo Khola, and trek till Kang Gompa. It’s a long climb from here to the grassy ridge, but it’d definitely worth thwe while as the views of Shey Shikar (6139m) and Kang Chunne (6443m), which dominate the skyline are awesome. You then descend gently on a rocky route to Lar Tsa, where you’ll spend the remaining time for acclimatization.

Day 09: Trek to Mendok Din

You cross a new bridge (Kahngle Pass) and climb your way up a grassy ridge to a high crest. The drop is gentle from here to Mendok Ding (flower valley). The campsite climbs alongside a stream on a slope, where herds of blue sheep are a frequent sight.

Day 10: Trek to Shey Gompa

After a long pull to Sehu La, you trek down a scree slope to a grassy meadow besides a stream valley. Then begins a series of long ascents and descents across ridges around Crystal Mountain. After a rough climb, you begin the descent to the Tar valley. You visit the Tsakang gompa, resting dramatically on a cliff. You then move down a wide trail to the campsite, on a grassy meadow with few nomad huts.

Day 11: Rest and Exploration day.

As you explore Dolpo, Shey Gompa is  The gompa itself is not large, and there are no artifacts or paintings of note inside. Although the building is said to be 800years old, the wall paintings are relatively recent, probably done in 1970s. The statues on the altar are of Guru Rimpoche, Sakyamuni and Milarepa. The gompa also houses an ancient Tibetan scroll that describes the myth of Crystal Mountain and Shey gompa. According to the inscription, there is a holy lake in a crater among the mountains that surrounds Shey. When a pilgrim makes nine circumambulations of this lake the water turns milk. A sip of this milk and the pilgrim can se Mt Kailash in the distance.

Day 12: Trek to Namgung. Time: Seven and half hours.

You trek east from Shey gompa and across the 5010m Shey La. Here you turn north and descend before climbing again to Namgung (4430m).

Day 13: Trek from Namgung to Karang which takes almost six hours.

You traverse high above the Namgung Kola to Karang (4050m). It's also possible to descend to Saldang on the banks of the river, but this village holds little of interest.

Day 14: Trek from Karang to Mugaon and it takes approximately seven and half hours.

You descend to Torak Sumdo (3670m), the confluence of the Namgung and Polang kholas, and cross to the northern bank. You then climb to Yanger gompa at 3750m and trek along the river side valley. You camp at one of the camp sites alongside the stream at about 4100m before Mugaon.

Day 15: Trek from Mugaon to Shimen which takes almost eight and half hours.

You continue up the valley to Mugaon and climb towards the Mushi La at 5030m. Then you descend towards Shimen village, you end the day at a good camp site in pastures above the village at 4010m.

Day 16: Trek from Shiment to Tinje and it takes about eight hours.

You drop down to Shimen village at 3870m and make a long trek upriver through Pha (4090m) to Tinje (4150m).

Day17: Trek from Tinje to Rakpa which takes approximately eight hours.

You trek past the runway of mysterious Tinje airport to a trail junction at 4130m, where a high route leads to Tarap. You continue southward to a camp site on the banks of the river at Rakpa (4530m).

Day 18: Trek from Rakpa to Chharka and it takes almost eight hours.

You begin your day with a long climb to the Chharka La (4920m). You continue on the trail descending along the side of the valley, then make a big drop into a side valley at 4290m. You then make a long traverse down to the picturesque village of Chharka on the banks of Barbung Kola at 4120m.

Day 19: Trek from Chharka to Norbulung and it takes about seven hours.

You descend again to a river. You follow the right fork southward, climbing in and out of side valleys on a rough trail. The valley narrows, you then emerge into a big meadow and climb to your campsite at Norbulung (4750m).

Day 20: Trek from Norbulung to Sangda Phedi and it takes approximately eight hours.

You begin the day climbing to a yak pasture at Molum Sumna (4860m) and on to a crest at 5130m. You then make a long traverse across meadows to the foot of the Sangda La, then a long, steep final climb to the pass at 5460m.

Day 21: Trek from Sangda Phedi to Sangda which takes about Nine hours.

You climb to a lower Sangda La at 4990m, and then descend through loose shale towards the village of Sangda Ghunsa (4190m). You drop to the Chalung Khola, crossing it at 3750m, and then climb steeply up the opposite bank. A long high traverse leads to a cairn at 4090m, you then come to a set of steep switchbacks descends to a stream at 3580m. You do another climb to the compact settlement of Sangda, were you end a long day at 3700m.

Day 22: Trek from Sangdo to Dhagarjun and it takes about Nine hours.

You climb the hill behind Sangda and spent most of the day making a high traverse, crossing nine ridges to a final crest at 4280m. You then descend into the Kali Gandaki valley, traversing under high cliffs and descending to the large village of Dhagarjun (3290m).

Day 23: Trek from Dhagarjun to Jomson and fly to Pokhara

You climb to a ridge at and make a final descent on a challenging trail of loose rocks to Jomsom at 2670m. You take an early flight from Jomsom to Pokhara - a fantastic way to round off the trek, flying right along the Kali Gandaki Gorge between the Annapurna and Dhaulagiri ranges. In Pokhara you check into the Hotel, get the dust of the last three weeks washed off and head out for a nice dinner!

Day 24: Drive back to Kathmandu

A long drive in a tourist mini bus is very scenic. You’ll cross many mountain views, green sceneries, rice terrace fields, vegetable fields and busy little towns on the way. You can also choose to fly from Pokhara to Kathmandu which takes approximately 25 minutes.

Note

We customize itinerary as per your interest to manage your specific requirements.

 

The Cost Includes:

  • A guide
  • Necessary Porters (A porter is provided to two persons, and can carry upto 20 Kilos)
  • Entry permits for Annapurna Conservation Area
  • Trekkers' Information Management System (TIMS) card
  • Necessary transport
  • All meals three times a day (breakfast, lunch and dinner) for you and our staff during the trek
  • Accommodation in teahouses (lodges) for you and our staff during the trek
  • Necessary equipment such as sleeping bag, down jacket etc.
  • First aid kits for guide and porters
  • Insurance and equipment for the Nepali staffs
  • 2 night’s hotel accommodation in Pokhara at lake side
  • Airport picks up services

The Cost Excludes:

  • Bar bills (coca cola, mineral water etc.)
  • Personal Insurance &; emergency rescue charges if necessary
  • Extra porter &; transport charges in the event of landslides
  • Other personal expenses
  • Personal, medical and evacuation insurance
  • Laundry, cost raised by re-routing, cancellation, political disturbance etc.
  • Tips and any other expenses, which are not mentioned above.
  • Lunch and dinner in Pokhara
  • Meals and hotel accommodation in Kathmandu (We can arrange your hotel accommodation in Kathmandu as per your interest and budget)

To enjoy your trip more you need to be comfort and breathability all day long, for that you need to put emphasis on equipment’s that are necessary. The following list includes items that are necessary which can also be hired.

  • Backpack: During your trip you need to be careful to make the weight of your clothing equipment down to minimum. Your packed trek bag, should weigh no more than 15 kilograms (33 pounds.)
  • Sleeping Bag: Sleeping bag rated to at least 15-degrees Fahrenheit (Optional/ Sleeping bag is provided by us if necessary)
  • Duffel Bag
  • Flash Light (Head lamp)
  • Sun glass
  • Water purifier

Feet

  • Trekking boots
  • Lightweight sandals
  • Woolen socks (3 pairs)

Clothes

While packing your clothes, you need to be careful to not to pack heavy clothes. It’s rather good to go on layers than in bulky clothes.

  • Hat (For warmth)
  • Lightweight long sleeve trekking shirts
  • Long sleeves are good for sun protection. Light weight makes for easy wash material
  • Fleece Jacket or pullover
  • Underwear (4 pairs)
  • Fleece or wool trouser/ Pants
  • Gaiters (Optional)
  • Thermal Clothing (As per the Season)
  • Lightweight rain Jacket
  • Warm Gloves or mittens
  • Sports bra

Miscellaneous Items

  • Sun block
  • Toilet articles and towel
  • Small Knife
  • First-aid kit (containing all drugs prescribed to you)
  • Batteries backup

Accommodation: You would be accommodated at Nagarjun homestay with facilities of hot water, western toilets, electricity, television, free WIFI during Kathmandu stay. And offered to stay at teahouses with facilities granted by teahouses during trek.


Meal: You would be offered breakfast, Nepali meal at homestay during time at Kathmandu while on trekking you would be provided Nepalese meals three times a day during trek.