Annapurna Expedition, the first-ever 8thousander peak to be successfully climbed, is in the list of the tenth world’s highest peaks. The mountain was named after a Hindu Goddess of food and grains: Annapurna which is derived from Sanskrit words ‘Anna’ meaning food and ‘Purna’ meaning full. Although Annapurna I is the deadliest mountain above 8000m as it has the highest fatality rate, this mountain is the first-ever 8thousander to be climbed. Maurice Herzog and Louis Lachenal were the pioneer mountaineers who introduced the Mt. Annapurna by successfully scaling the peak in 1950, three years before Mt. Everest was ascended.
The Annapurna massif is 55 kilometers long including numerous peaks that are protected under Annapurna Conservation Area. The massif is entirely located in Nepal and is surrounded by Kali Gandaki Gorge on West, Marsyangdi River on East and Pokhara valley on South. The Annapurna Region got popularity only after legendary mountaineer: Colonel Jimmy Roberts introduced the details about this region in his journal ‘Mountain Travel” in 1965. Trekking on the base camp of the Annapurna I is an equally fascinating and marvelous endeavor.
The fascinating mountains and forest areas make Annapurna region one of the popular destinations and most enchanting spots on this planet. Mount Annapurna climbing is one of the most dangerous mountains to climb with high risks of avalanches. All the route possessed severe difficulties for climbers to overcome with huge ice cliffs and seracs. Hence, previous experience of peak climbing with a good physical condition is highly recommended for those seeking to achieve the summit of Annapurna. Annapurna expedition offers you magnificent views and high mountains within Annapurna Sanctuary. After achieving the summit you will descend following the same route back to base camp. From the base camp, you will retrace your steps following the same trail passing through Lete, Ghasa, Tatopani and trek towards Beni. The memorable and ultimate adventure of Annapurna Expedition ends with a drive from Beni to Pokhara and another drive from Pokhara back to Kathmandu.
The journey starts from the Kathmandu valley from where the bus ride of about 5 to 6 hours will take you to the beautiful city of Pokhara. Through this ride travellers can enjoy the scenic views of beautiful river valleys, alongside terraced fields of barley and rice and over green hills blanketed with lush vegetation. When you arrive at the Pokhara valley there you will witness the beautiful lakes, hills and mountain ranges. The travellers will enjoy the evening here and stay here for a night.
The travellers will begin their day with the ride from Pokhara to Nayapul. After a short walk along the banks of the Modi Khola, you will reach Birethanti, a large village with many shops and teahouses. From here, the trail continues through the village and follows the north bank of the Bhurungdi Khola. The path climbs steadily up the side of the valley to Hille at 1495 metres and after a short climb you will reach Tikhedhunga at 1570 metres. This trek is relatively short and easy, a prelude to the trekking experience in the Annapurna region.
From Tikhedhunga the trail crosses a stream on a suspension bridge near the campsite at Tikhedhunga. The trail ascends a steep stone staircase (which has about 3300 steps) to the large Magar village of Ulleri at 2080m. Above the village, the trail climbs gently through pastures and cultivated fields. The trail crosses two beautiful and clear streams before making a short and final climb to the Nangethanti. Thanthi is the Nepali word meaning ”rest house”. During the winter season you can experience the trail covered with the white and soft snow. From Nangethanti you will continue your climb towards the Ghorepani at 2850 metres from here you can indulge yourself in the spectacular panoramic views of Dhaulagiri I, Nilgiri, Annapurna I, Himchuli and more.
The trek starts early in the morning and you will continue to hike towards the Poon Hill 3210 metres. From here you will see a superb view of the sunrise and panoramic view of the Himalaya, including Mt Dhaulagiri, Mt Annapurna South, Mt Fishtail and others. Further, you will continue to descend to Ghorepani and trek towards the Tatopani.
From Tatopani, you will trek on a broad motor road trail that can be quite dusty. The trek goes along the Kali Gandaki river. Your trail ascends gradually as you pass through the magnificent waterfall of Rupche Chahara. From there, your trek continues along the dusty trail that leads through deep gorges. You can hear the huge flows of the river stream while trekking through the area. You will continue to trek until you arrive at the village of Ghasa for your overnight stay.
You will leave Ghasa and follow a rising trail that climbs for some hours to reach Lete. The trek climbs through subtropical vegetation with incredible views of surrounding mountains and beautiful valleys. Your trek continues until you arrive at Lete for the overnight stay.
Today you will leave Lete and trek over the trail that climbs further to harsh alpine vegetation. The Sherpa crew will do all the hard work of carrying the tents, climbing gears and other necessary things needed for the further trekking and climbing. After a few hours of trekking, you will arrive at Thulo Bugin where there is a good campsite.
You will leave your campsite at Thulo Bugin and follow the trail that climbs gradually over the loose and rocky route for a few hours. Trekking in higher altitudes can be very tiring, so resting every now and then helps in restoring energy much needed for further trekking. You will trek until you arrive at a good campsite near Hum Khola at 4,286 meters.
Today you will leave your campsite at Hum Khola and follow the trail that comprises several ups and downs and then levels out for some time. After a few hours trekking, you will approach Miristi Khola where there are good camping grounds. Once you arrive at Miristi Khola, the crew will set up the camps for your overnight camping.
After breakfast, you will leave your campsite at Miristi Khola and continue your trek over the rather leveled path for some hours to reach Annapurna North Base Camp. After arriving at the campsite the Sherpa crew will set up the base camp and make necessary preparations for setting up additional camps at higher altitudes above the base camp. From now onwards you will take extra precautions with physical fitness and mental fitness in order to conquer one of the toughest 8000 meters – Mt Annapurna I.
You will spend several days doing climbing training practices. The Sherpa crew will do all the hard works from carrying and setting up additional camps at higher altitudes, prepare and provide healthy and hygienic meals for staying mentally and physically fit, and most importantly finding appropriate routes and fixing ladders, ropes etc.. to reach the summit of one of the deadliest mountains in the world – Mount Annapurna. Moreover fully acclimatized and properly equipped with all the climbing gears we will follow the footsteps of experienced climbing Sherpa guides and overcome several technical climbing sections. Similarly taking weather conditions into consideration we head towards the summit. Your much-awaited climb to the summit is rewarded with breathtaking views of mountains within Annapurna and Dhaulagiri Himalayan Ranges. After spending a quality moment at the summit you will descend following the same route to reach back to base camp.
Having achieved the summit of Mt Annapurna for a lifetime experience, you will make a relaxed start. After breakfast you will engage yourselves in cleaning the base camp, then you prepare yourselves for the return journey. You start to retrace your steps on the same trail that heads back towards Miristi Khola. You will camp at Miristi Khola for the overnight stay.
From Miristi Khola you will continue to retrace your steps on the same trail that passes through Hum Khola. From there you will descend steeply for a couple of hours and trek to reach Thulo Bugin Campsite for your overnight camping.
After breakfast, you will leave your campsite at Thulo Bugin. And follow the same trail that descends down to subtropical vegetation. You will trek until you arrive back to Lete where you will spend your overnight in the comfy tea house at Lete.
From Lete, your trail descends following the same trail until you arrive back to Ghasa. The trek offers mountain vista of Annapurna regions with beautiful valleys. You will spend your overnight at Ghasa.
From Ghasa your trail descends steeply until you reach Rukse Chahara, Rukse Waterfall in the Nepali language. You will take a short rest enjoying the view of the waterfall. Soon, the trail enters back to Kali Gandaki Valley – the deepest gorge in the world as we head towards Tatopani for your overnight stay. Tatopani in Nepali stands for ‘Hot Water’. Here there is Natural Hot Water Spring where you can relax after arriving at Tatopani. It is believed that the water heals the body and aches naturally.
From Tatopani, the trek continues on the trail that descends gradually down to Beni – where your trek ends technically. From Beni, you will take a two hours drive to reach Pokhara. You will be transferred to the hotel once you arrive at Pokhara. You can either have a rest at the hotel or take an evening’s walk in the beautiful city of Pokhara.
It is time to bid farewell to the Pokhara valley and take a bus ride back to the Kathmandu valley. You can enjoy the beautiful landscapes, river valleys and clear sky through the window of the bus before reaching the city.
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