Lower Dolpo Trekking – 15 Days
This trek takes us to a remote and spectacular corner of the Himalaya in a largest district of Nepal occupying 15% of total land area, bound to the east and south by the huge Dhaulagiri and Churen Himal ranges, to the west by Jumla district and isolated from rest of the country by high passes to the south. This trek is recommended to trekkers who are used to trek in to great heights and although is a difficult route compensated however by the beauty of the countryside and kindness of the people. The Tibetan style villages of Tarap and Phoksumdo Lake boast impressive gompas and monasteries, where yak caravans remain the main form of transportation. Observing different rain shadow landscapes with stunning mountain views, wild flowers, Himalayan blue sheep, snow leopards, and huge birds Himalayan griffon.
Day 1: Arrival KATHMANDU (1300m/4265ft)
Arrive at Kathmandu International Airport where you will be warmly welcomed by our representative and check in to the hotel. The rest of the day is free to explore this historic and vibrant city. Overnight at hotel. Meals: Welcome Dinner
Day 2: Fly to NEPALGUNJ (160m/525ft)
From Kathmandu domestic airport it is an one hour scenic flight to Nepalgung, which lies in the southern Nepal border with India and has a hot tropical climate. Overnight at hotel. Meals: Breakfast
Day 3: Fly to JUPHAL (2490m/8170ft); Trek to DUNAI (2030m/6660ft) 2-3 hours
From Nepalgunj there are only few days flight a week in the early morning for the 40 minutes flight to Himalayan terrain land of Juphal. Flight from Nepalgunj to Juphal is short but exciting. The trail to Dunai descends past the houses heading southeast through fields to reach a village of Dangi Bhara. Passing through the village and continuing between more fields of maize we cross a stream and reach another settlement of Kala Gaura. From here we walk close to the river on its south bank all the way to Dunai. After short narrowing of the valley we reach Roop Ghar from where the trail passes beyond the tributary stream on the opposite bank the entrance to the Suli Gad valley. Now crossing broad flat meadow fringed with pine and now small fields we see a large complex of hospital buildings seen on the opposite bank, we go through an entrance of Kani and moments later we enter the district headquarter of Dunai which is large village with paved street lined with houses. Overnight at tented camp. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 4: Trek TARAKOT (2450m/8038ft) 5 hours; 430m ascent
We follow the trail eastward out of Dunai along the south bank of the Thulo Bheri. Crosssing to the north bank and then the south bank again at Lawan the trail passes below the fields of Tarakot to a camp site near the Chyada Khola, just below the fortress of Tarakot village. Overnight at tented camp. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 5: Trek LAINI (3160m/10368ft) 6-7 hours; 810m ascent, 100m descent
Climbing gently through pink fields of flowering buckwheat, we detour south into a side valley with views of Putha Himal, cross the Yalkot Khola and climb to a trail that hugs the south side of the river. Above Tarakot the Thulo Bheri is known as the Barbung Khola. Staying mostly high above the river we climb to 2670m before descending past cypress trees and a white chorten to a 120m long, high suspension bridge at Laisicap (2600m) and after sometime we see Kanigaon village high above the trail. Here we can see a bird, white breasted dippers found only in western Nepal. After visiting the Chhandul Gompa we come back to the main trail and continue through cedar forest as the valley walls start to close in. Three sided tunnels are blasted out of the rock through the steepest part of the gorge, as the river drops steeply alongside the trail. The gorge finally starts to widen near Laini. Overnight at tented camp. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 6: Trek NAWARPANI (3545m/11631ft) 5 hours; 500m ascent, 60m descent
Walking ahead for sometime we face a stiff climb on switchbacks to a mini pass marked with prayer flags at 3540m from where the trail makes highly enjoyable high traverse through a very steep gorge eventually descending to cross the cascades of the Tilba Khola (3570m). Now we climb one more ridge and descend to the Chyugur Khola (3520m). A rough stone house under a rock offers cave like accommodation and we can see Crag martins fly high above the gorge. We cross the suspension bridge to the river’s true left and after sometime again to the right bank to reach finally to a mule caravan stop of Nawarpani. Overnight at tented camp.Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 7: Trek DO TARAP (4080m/13386ft) 6-7 hours; 630m ascent, 140m descent
As the gorge narrows we cross to the true left bank and pass a small cave to climb a thrilling section of trail chiseled out of the sheer rock face. Recrossing the Tarap Chu at Tal Tole (3680m) and after passing a narrow slot canyon we climb on the east bank through a classic eroded Trans Himalayan landscape to a chorten on a ridge at Serkam (3870m) from where we descend and cross back to west bank from a kilometer furtheer we swing into the Sishul Khola to reach a campsite with cave at 3840m. The trail is rocky as it traverses beneath cliffs to a bridge at 3920m. We cross to the east bank where a huge side valley leads up the Lang Chu to the remote village of Lang. Heading north up the Tarap Chu and climbing slowly alongside the river past mani walls and eroded cliffs we climb to a village of Do Tarap keeping an eye out for blue sheep along this section. The views over the valley are superb and we can visit the surrounding monasteries, the Ribo Bhumpa Gompa, Doro Gompa and Shipchok Gompa. Overnight at tented camp. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 8: Trek NUMA LA BASE CAMP (4440m/14568ft) 3-4 hours; 360m ascent
Heading west out of Do Tarap we reach a century old Mekyem Gompa which features a large statue of Maitreya Buddha. Now passing through the Crystal Mountain Schoolthe trail continues uphill to Gakar village and the Dorje Phurba Gompa that has a collection of ancient weapons. After sometime the trail crosses the Tarap Chu on a wooden bridge that leads to Mondo (4170m) from where the valley divides for the Upper and Lower Dolpo Trek routes. So we take the southern branch, passing the white walled Jampa Lhakhang to Tok-khyu village at 4180m. We continue on to Numa La Base Camp, tucked in a side valley by a stream. The large white building high on the hill is Sherin Gompa. Overnight at tented camp. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 9: Trek NUMA LA PASS (5290m/17356ft); Trek PELUNG TANG (4465m/14650ft) 6-7hours; 540m ascent, 960m descent
From Numa La Base Camp, we cross the stream on rocks and climb steeply on yak trails up a grassy slope to a ridge with several mani walls and a chorten at 4580m. We continue up the ridge to a grassy knoll and a tiny stream at 4700m dipping into a high glacial bowl (4960m) before crossing a small stream and making the long climb up a moraine to the 5290m Numa La. From this high pass we have the great views of Shey Shikar (6139m) and Kanjeralwa to the northeast, and the tip of Dhaulagiri I (8167m) to the southeast. We descend from the pass into a scenic U shaped, rocky valley. The trail swings sharply left and we move ahead passing yak caravans hauling timber and watching blue sheep and snow leopards in this remote valley which drops down to join another large valley from the east. We follow the river downstream past dramatically eroded cliffs to make a sharp U turn to the left, swinging into another large side valley. We walk round the ridge into the valley and climb gently to reach pastures at Pelung Tang. The spectacular glaciated peak at the head of the valley is Norbu Kang (6005m). Overnight at tented camp. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 10: Trek BAGA LA PASS (5175m/16979ft); Trek DAJOK TANG (4080m/13386ft) 6 hours; 670m ascent, 1330m descent
The trail crosses the stream and switchbacks up a slope to a small meadow known as high camp at 4740m from where the trail hits the snowline and climbs a ridge to offer fine views of Norbu Kang, before ascending a moraine into a large bowl marked by a chorten of upturned stones. The trail arcs gently around the bowl on a scree slope to several rough cairns atop Baga La. From Baga La the trail descends steeply in the beginning and then more gently staying high above the right bank of the stream. At 4390m the trail turns a corner and enters a huge valley, making a final descent on steep switchbacks to a beautiful Dajok Tang with a large moraine and numerous waterfalls. Several snowy peaks including Kagmara (5960m) crowd the horizon at the end of the valley. Overnight at tented camp. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 11: Trek PHOKSUMDO LAKE (3620m/11877ft) 3-4 hours; 70m ascent, 270m descent
Following a trail down past views of Sonam Kang to a collection of herders huts from where traverse high above the river through groves of thorny shrubs, juniper and blue pine into a huge valley topped by the distant snowy range of Kagmara Lekh. After an initial descent the trail climb and contour around the hillside to a decorated ridge (3750m) and then see a huge waterfall across the valley. The trail descends gently through blue pine forest to the chortens and barely fields of Ringmo village at 3640m from where we walk to the stunning shores of Phoksumdo Lake. Overnight at tented camp. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 12: Trek CHEPKA (2670m/8760ft) 5- 6 hours
After an insightful visit we leave Phoksumdo and descend towards Chepka. The trail goes down hill through a forest of big cedars, past a village of Palam (3280m) which is a winter settlement used by the people of Ringmo village and then pass through another village of Renje (3010m) to reach finally to Chepka village. Overnight at tented camp. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 13: Trek JUPHAL 4-5 hours
We continue the descending trail through the villages of Sankta (2460m), Kageni (2260m) and Suli Gaad (2070m) respectively to reach Dunai (2030m). Dunai is the headquarters of Dolpa. From Dunai we trek a few more hours to reach Juphal. Overnight at tented camp. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 14: Fly from NEPALGUNJ to KATHMANDU
From Juphal we fly to Nepalgunj and then finally to Kathmandu and drop to the hotel. This is a leisure day which can be utilized buying gifts and souvenirs for your friends and family. In the evening you will be invited to join FAREWELL reviewing great photos and share experiences of the trip. Overnight at hotel. Meals: Breakfast, Farewell Dinner
Day 15: Fly back HOME or extend your HOLIDAYS
If you prefer to stay longer, you can consult us for short tours such as game drive at National parks, rafting, mountain biking, Tibet, India or Bhutan tours etc. Meals: Breakfast
Cost, Includes and Excludes
- All airport/hotel pick up and drop in private car/van
- 3 Nights Hotel in Kathmandu including breakfast
- 12 Nights stay in Lodge/Guest House during trek.
- An experienced English speaking Trekking Guide and a Porter during trek.
- Salary, food, insurance and lodging cost for guide and porter
- Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner and Tea/Coffee during trek.
- Welcome and Farewell Meals and Breakfasts while in Kathmandu.
- National Park Permit and TIMS for Everest.
- Air fare from Kathmandu to Lukla and return flight to Kathmandu and domestic flight departure taxes.
- Down Jacket and Sleeping Bag that needs to be returned to office after trek completion.
- Nepal entry visa fees.
- International airfare and departure tax.
- Bar bills, laundry and other expenses of per
- Travel insurance including evacuation.
- 1 Lunch in Kathmandu
- Tips for local staffs, guides and porters.