Makalu Base Camp Trek

15 Days




Makalu Base Camp Trek

The core here is to reach the foothills or BC of the 5th highest mountain on earth…we go by the Shipton col as we rendezvous with the south side of Makalu that gives us rare extraordinary vistas of the hidden Kangshung face of mighty Everest…this is an unusual wilderness trek and backpackers heading to this region are only a select few, and you are the king of the trails in this rugged region. However, despite the remoteness of the region, we bunk out in average teahouse lodges where the going is good…and what better way to make a holiday choice…this is an escape for your ‘gotta get there someday’’…THE SOONER THE BETTER…

Makalu Base Camp trek journey in this isolated alpine outback is an experience never to be forgotten in our future visits to Nepal as we drive down to the airstrip of Tumlingtar on the upper reaches of the Arun River for our flight to Kathmandu. Our venture heads through the Barun National Park which is famous for its natural beauty and recognized throughout the world for its uniquely varied flora and fauna. Our trails wade through delightful terraced farmlands rich in produce and across friendly vibrant villages that welcome us warmly on the way; as we get near the Shipton La peak at 4229m. On reaching the higher elevations, we get master views from Makalu to as far as the massive Kangchenjunga. This region was literally closed to the world till 1952 till Eric Shipton decided to check it out. Around the 10th day of our venture, we get almost a whole day to discover the nearby scenery above Shersong with fantastic sights of Kangshung (the rare face of Everest} and upfront views of the towering Chamlang and Makalu’s lovely south face.

Most of our Makalu Base Camp Trek paths are inhabited by an interesting mix of different ethnic and Brahmin communities, and a lot of them reside in far out lonely villages where their survival purely depends on farming as a means of surviving; and this gives trekkers a whole lot of cultural experience that would make important notes for future study. Friendships created hereabouts become useful for new trekkers heading to this region and for those who have previously trekked this area. You’ve got to come out here to believe why Makalu is turning out to be a very popular circuit these days…and nobody shows you Makalu better than GURKHA ADVENTURES…because our history is based on wilderness odysseys of such nature…visit our highly informative website to get in-depth information about trips like this one

Includes and excludes :

  1. All meals as specified for trek (breakfast, lunch, dinner with tea/coffee).
  2. Arrival pick up & departure.
  3. All internal local transport as per the itinerary.
  4. Internal flights
  5. All trekking arrangements including trekking permits, climbing permits, National Park entrance fees.
  6. Accommodation in twin sharing local lodges or best available places for accommodation,
  7. Trekking & Climbing leader & porter (salary, insurance, food, accommodation & other allowances).
  8. Basic first aid kit is carried by your leader.
  9. All hardware gears
  1. Kathmandu food lunch & dinner,
  2. International flights to Kathmandu,
  3. Tips for Porter, guide & other
  4. Personal climbing gears and climbing boot, clothing & equipment
  5. Personal expenditure, all bar bills, laundry, telephone calls, hot shower in the mountain region, mineral water, snacks, desserts.
  6. Medical examination (if required) & vaccination costs
  7. Optional trips. Charges incurred as a result of delays beyond our control
  8. Visa fees & Travel insurance. Airport taxes
  9. Meals or drinks except the 3 main meals specified in itinerary
  10. Anything else not specified in the ‘included costs’ section above

For more details

Itinerary breakdown

Makalu Base Camp Trek

Day 01: arrive Kathmandu and check into your hotel – {1360m}

On arrival at Kathmandu’s Tribhuvan International Airport, you will be received by our representative who will escort you to your hotel. After getting refreshed, one of our trek leaders or a senior Sherpa guide will give you a brief orientation of the Hotel, Kathmandu, Trek / Camping, things you should do & ought not to do and other related information that you might require while in Nepal. After this is done, get settled in & it’s your first overnight in the ancient valley of the gods.

Day 02: Cultural tour in Kathmandu. Preparing permits and other paperwork for the trip

You will be escorted on an interesting tour accompanied by a professional guide while we prepare your permits and complete necessary paperwork related to your trip. Kathmandu is the historical and cultural heart of Nepal and has been a popular destination for tourists ever since Nepal opened its doors to visitors. The city presents a wonderful mix of Hinduism, Tibetan Buddhism and Western influence in the Valley. Patan and Bhaktapur, its two major neighboring cities bear immense historical, cultural and religious significances. There will be a half day guided tour to the famous and biggest Hindu shrine of Pashupatinath, the largest Buddhist stupa in Nepal Boudhanath, the 15th century Palace of 55 windows and Swoyambhunath. Overnight in the valley of temples – Breakfast

Day 03: Fly Kathmandu -Tumlingtar [460m] & drive to Num [1490m] 4-5 hrs

After b/fast, we hop on our plane for a one hour flight from Kathmandu to Tumlingtar, from where our trek commences. From Tumlingtar, we drive towards Num on a roughshod bumpy road in a rumble tumble jeep after lunch. If it’s the post monsoon period then we can’t use this road due to the slushy mud that could trap the jeep’s wheels in a ditch. This is where our real trek starts from. We crash out in tented camps. B. L. D

Day 04: Trek to Sedua [1460m] 6-7 hrs

We continue along the trail descending steeply from Num through the corn fields of Lumbang. Below the village the trail drops very steeply through a jungle to a suspension bridge over the Arun River (660m). From the bridge we climb steeply to a primitive tea shop, then through corn and buckwheat field. Moving along the rocky path and tiny terraces planted with corn and barley, we make a long, steep, rough climb to Sedua at (1460m).

Day 05: Trek to Tashigaon [2070m] – 3-4 hrs

The trail slightly ascends but the major part of the trail is flat and easy through the bushes. Tashigaon, surrounded by verdant forest, is a big Sherpa village. We find prayer flags fluttering in sky in and around the village. The camping spot in this village is really praiseworthy. We make a gradual climb high above the Kasuwa Khola to Gyang (1770m). Climbing past the school at Gyang, it is a gentle walk through terraced fields and forested areas to Hindrungma village, and on to Rupisa. En route, we cross meadows and several streams, and then climb to the Sherpa village of Tashi Gaon, the last permanent settlement in the valley. B. L. D

Day 06: Trek to Khongma La {3560m) 5-6 hrs

We hike from Tashigaon to Kongma la (3560 m) and this takes about six hours. The trail ascends throughout the day and we will walk through the shades of lovely forest of Rhododendrons and Sal trees; on coming out of the forest, we come across summer pastures with some traces of temporary shepherd huts and then it’s a pretty tough climb until we reach our destination of Kongma la, a high ridge with only one tea house. This is also a perfect place for camping. We camp out here for the night. B. L.D

Day 07: Rest & acclimatization day down here

A Rest and acclimatization day allows our bodies to catch up with us before gaining more height. We hang around and explore our surroundings, being idle is not good for our bodies. Overnight in our camps – B. L. D

Day08: Trek to Mumbuk [3570m] 5-6 hrs

Today leaving Khongma, we climb on steep switchbacks for a while. We then climb less steeply through rhododendron forests to the top of the ridge, with a large mani wall adorned with prayer flags. From here, we get superb views of Chamlang, Peak 6 and Peak 7. Following the ridge for a while, we ascend a stone staircase. After a few false summits the trail veers left off the crest to a small lake. We then climb gently up a shallow rocky gully to the Kike La (4127 m). From the pass, we descend to another lake, and then ascend steeply through large boulders to the Tutu La. We continue descending about 150 meters into sparse rhododendron forests to a level area. The final descent is through a forest of firs and rhododendrons to Mumbuk (3570 m). Mumbuk is a forest camp, on a grassy slope about 100 meters above a small stream, with great views of snow peaks through the trees. Bunk out in our tented camps – B. L. D

Day 09: Trek to Yangla Kharka {3600m} – 4-5 hrs

The route today is a bit adventurous and strenuous, but exciting. The trail passes for about 3 hours through a landscape which is very prone to landslides. The Barun River adds more dimensions to the trail with its spectacular views of Mt. Tutse (Peak 6) 6739m, and Peak 7 (6185m). We camp hereabouts for the night. B. L. D

Day 10: Trek to Shersong [4615m] – 7-8 hrs

There’s quite a lot of trekking to be done today. Beyond Yangla Kharka, we follow the north bank of the Barun Khola for a while. We then cross a small wooden bridge before the river turns northward. The Barun Valley makes a huge S-shaped curve and the walls rise almost vertically 1500 to 2000 meters above the river, but the trail climbs gently as we approach Ripok Kharka. Still on the north side of the Barun, the trail turns westward and leaves the rhododendron forests for alpine tundra. Above Ripok Kharka, the route crosses a rocky crest with a few goths, and then ascends alongside a moraine formed by the Barun Glacier. There are excellent views of Pyramid Peak, Peak 4, Chamlang, Peak 3 and Peak 5, but Makalu is not yet visible. As we pass a ridge the glacier turns slightly north. We enter an alluvial valley and Makalu pops into view just before Shersong (4615 m). Shersong is somewhat sheltered, but still is a very cold spot. This will be ideal for setting up camp for the night. B. L. D

Day 11: Trek to Makalu Base camp [5000m] 5-6 hrs

From Shersong, we stay to the right in a gully on the east side of the valley. It is gradual descent to a minor pass about 100 meters above Makalu Base Camp. We then descend to a stream, cross on boulders to the base camp on the west bank of the river. From here we get terrific views of the south face of Makalu. The large buttress of the south face rises across from base camp. An ascent of this buttress yields views of Peak 6, 7 and Baruntse at (7220m); Everest and Lhotse complete the panorama. A great place to spend the night in our tented camps –          B. L. D

Day 12: Trek back to Mumbuk – 6-7 hrs

We continue back from MBC with our descent through the rock falls. Then climb up the rock gully to Mumbuk. We are again greeted by the lovely greenery we saw earlier below.  B. L. D

Day 13: Trek to Tashi Gaon [2070m] 5-6 hrs

Today we make a long steep descent back to Tashi Gaon. At Tashi Gaon we spend the rest of the day relaxing in order to recover from the high altitude. The descent will be a long and steep one. We cut across hillsides to eventually reach the Sherpa town of Tashi Gaon where we had hiked through earlier. B. L. D

Day 14: Trek to Num and drive to Tumlingtar – 5-6 hrs

We retrace the same path that we came by earlier, but this time around we trek through Num. We exit the Makalu Barun Camp and Descend down to Arun Khola and Seduwa again. We then do another hike through some shady forest to Num. We follow our footsteps all the way back down to the river to climb back up the opposite side of the valley to Num for our drive to the Tumlingtar airstrip. Overnight in Tumlingtar – B. L. D

Day 15: Fly out to Kathmandu – Farewell buddies…

We complete the journey with a flight to Kathmandu. We will return to the welcome haven of our Hotel and a lovely cosy warm bed. Once back in Kathmandu, Gurkha Adventures will host an evening barbecue to celebrate the expedition and as a farewell party to thank our guests, and the Sherpas for their support and friendship. Alls well that ends well!!

Destination Map