Lower Dolpo Trek

Trip Highlights

  • Kathmandu sightseeing.
  • Views of Dhaulagiri, Kangirowa and the Tibetan peaks.
  • Stunning Tibetan Buddhists’ and Bon PO Culture.
  • Thrilling high passes: Numa La and Baga La.
  • Desert and landscape and striking Dho Valley.
  • Breathtaking gorges and colourful monasteries.

The remote and isolated trekking in Lower Dolpo region follows the hidden trail that is used by the locals in the Phoksundo National Park. The area is populated by the ethnics of Tibetan origin Bon Po and Buddhists communities, who spend primitive existence with their antique lifestyles. The Lower Dolpo trek begins from the airstrip of Juphal after a scenic flight from Nepaljung, which is a major pattern of travel in this isolated land.

The increasing road construction has been a major barrier for the trekking route to be a mysterious trail. The fascination of this trip lies in different forms as natural and cultural diversity, adventure high passes and the pristine Lake. Heading through the rain shadow area, it comprises breathtaking sceneries. Phoksundo Lake via Chepka and tiny Bon Po settlements is rejuvenating, having an open camping place with the pristine views of the Lake and its vicinity. It is surrounded by the Bon Po religious people; down there Ringmo village offers a different outline and design. Hovering on a hill, Tarakot village resembles actual Tibetan Buddhist settlement. Another Dho Tarap is another bigger village inhabited by the inquisitive locals and a scenic place to explore. It is a brilliant arena with an enticing image of Upper Dolpo. While crossing the Numa La and Baga La Pass, take out your camera to arrest the stunning Himalayas of Dhaulagiri and the spreading Tibetan white peaks.

Consisting variations, the brilliant trek in Lower Dolpo  and its adventurous high pass trail carry on to discover the spiritual tenderness of the Tibetan culture. Mountain Delights Treks and Expedition operate this trip with full arrangements of safety measures, camping instruments and foods. Acclimatization factor should be carried altogether.    

Day 01:  Arrival in Kathmandu (1350m).

Welcome to Nepal. Representative of Mountain Delights Treks and Expedition receives you at the Tribhuvan international airport, Kathmandu. Then you transfer to the hotel. After a short rest, we take you to the Thamel tour (about 30 minutes) to introduce you about the shopping centre, bank and ATM, restaurants and money changers. Then, in the hotel a brief introduction about the upcoming itinerary is given. If you have a late flight, we do it on the following day.  Overnight at hotel.

Day 02:  Kathmandu Sightseeing.

Pashupatinath Temple:It is a Hindu temple devoted to Lord Shiva, located beside the Bagmati River. It is one of the most significant temples for the Hindu devotes around the world and the UNESCO site. The golden pagoda style temple is richly carved with silver doors. On the day of Shivaratri, a big fair is held around the month of February/March.

Boudhanath Stupa:One of the biggest Stupas in the world, is located on the east in Kathmandu. It stands with four pairs of eyes in the four prime direction, keeping watch for virtuous behaviour and human success. King Man Deva at the advice of the Goddess Mani Jogini had built this remarkable Stupa. The Stupa resembles the Mahayana philosophy.

Day 03: Fly from Kathmandu to Nepalgunj.

We drive to the domestic airport as our flight schedule and take a scenic flight to the western Nepal. It is situated near the border of Nepal and India. Around the evening time, we stroll around and see the local market. Overnight at hotel.

Day 04: Fly from Nepalgunj to Jhupal (Dolpo 2320m) and trek to Dunai (2850m): 2-3 hrs walk

We fly early in the morning from Nepalgunj to Juphal of Dolpo for 45 minutes. Annapurna and Dhaulagiri range come to our eyesight and we reach to Juphal. The team for the trekking greet and arrange all the luggage and required food supply. The journey begins from here to the mountain region through the rain shadow area. We walk above the Bheri River gradually through the easy trail. Then we continue the trek to the district centre in Dunai. Overnight at tented camp.

Day 05: Dunai to Tarakot (2543m). 5-6 hrs

The trail is fine today. We walk along the Bheri River and Barbung River gorge. Little bit upwards, the trail goes through the pine woods and reach to the open terraced fields. Tarakot lies in a bit distance from here, which is surrounded by the Dzong (fort) some decades ago, which was a headquarter during the multi-estate system in Nepal. The Sandul monastery at the stream junction is antique. Trading caravans have a huge flow continuously throughout the way.  We set a camp in an open space on a spur. Overnight at tented camp.

Day 06: Tarakot to Khani Gaon (2543m): 3-4 hrs

Departing from the Bheri River gorge, we catch up the line of the Tarap Chu stream by crossing the bridge. The route is fantastic with the pleasing views of terraced farmland and isolated village. Reaching Kola, we head further along the stream guided terrain. Other views we get of the Kami Gaon is our campsite. Overnight at tented camp.

Day 07: Khani Gaon to Tarap Khola (3450m). 4-5 hrs

Passing the steep slopes, we head along the narrow gorge alongside the River. We cross some of the tiny settlements with the hidden lifestyles. The pasture ground is used in the winter. The trail starts to hide somewhere and re-appearing. You can’t guess exactly how it goes ahead. Some of the wooden bridges on the way are broken and smashed away by the monsoon floods. We set up our camp at the Tarap Khola. Overnight at tented camp.

Day 08: Tarap Khola to Yak Kharka (3800m). 4-5 hrs

Following the outline of the stream, we start to trek uphill. The scenic landscape fills us possible energy to walk pleasantly throughout. We have lunch somewhere middle of the way and continue to walk to Yak Kharka. Overnight at tented camp.

Day 09: Yak Kharka to Dho Tarap (4090m). 5-6 hrs

We set out our excursion to the more isolated region. Passing through the confluence of Tarap Chu and Lang stream, the trail lead us through the narrow pathway above the tall woods to the bushy plants as Juniper and wild flowers. The dry inner Himalayan part is more picturesque and mind blowing. Walking further, we can see the stone walled village at Dho. The architecture of the village is unique and striking. They are highly influenced by the Tibetan Buddhism. We reach there after a short walk. Overnight at tented camp.

Day 10: Rest and acclimatization day.

As we gradually ascend to the high altitude, we need to get adapted to it. It is our rest and acclimatization day. We set out for a wonderful hiking around the Dho Tarap and arrest the picturesque setting through your lens of the camera. The local people here prefer to wear homespun garments and wear religious types. Nyigmapa sect and Bon PO sect people are found here with the Gompa in the village. Then we back to the camp. Overnight at tented camp.

Day 11: Dho Tarap to Tokyu Gaun (4200m), 5-6 hrs walk

After spending a memorable day at Dho Tarap, we ascend towards the Tarap valley at upper part. Following the rocky trail nearby the River, we continue our journey through the plain track. The greeneries on the Riverside create different sense and a positive energy in us. Tarap Chu stream leads our journey. The beautiful Tarap valley is also dotted by the fertile lands, where people grow barley, buckwheat, potatoes and other Himalayan crops. The tranquil setting of the village is fantastic with the colourful monasteries. With a gentle climb, we reach to the Tokyu village inhabited by the Chiba sect communities. Overnight at tented camp.

Day 12: Tokyu Gaun to Numala base (4665m). 4-5 hrs

Slowly, perching to the high altitude seem to be taking our breath away. We don’t have a long walk, but the increasing altitude makes our excursion slower. The trail is dotted with rocks and steep landscape. Befriending with the tough situation, we perched our campsite at the Numa La base. Overnight at tented camp.

Day 13: Cross Numa La (5309m), and camp at Pelung Tang (4465m). 6-7 hrs

One of the most difficult day of the entire trip at Lower Dolpo. Numa La pass lies at 5190 meters and the trail is technical through the steep climb at the top ridge of the hill. The walk is jaw-dropping with the pointing rock prevailed trail. The views of the downhill, gorges, brown landscape and the vicinity strike us. Dhaulagiri peak lies in front of us there. Then, with a careful descent, we arrive to Pelung Tang, where we stay. Overnight at tented camp.

Day 14: Cross Baga La (5070m) and camp at Dajok Tang (4080m). 5-6 hrs

It is another technical day of the Upper Dolpo trek. Right after breakfast, we head forward to accomplish our adventure mission. The beginning trail is steep uphill to the top ridge of the hill at Baga La (5070m). It is a good viewpoint of glorious Kanjirowa peak and its surroundings. Then the trail is steep downhill to deal with, which is still challenging. Finally, we arrive at our campsite at Dajok Tang. Overnight at tented camp.

Day 15: Dajok Tang to Ringmo (3600m). 3-4 hrs

We walk gently today as we have crossed the challenging sections earlier. First we cross the pine forest, then through the grazing meadows. Slowly, we are descending from the alpine terrain to down flat land. The vegetation changes with colourful tiny plants and finally we catch up our destination at Ringmo. Overnight at tented camp.

Day 16: Rest day at Ringmo, hike to the Phoksundo Lake.

This is a huge day to explore around the pristine Phoksundo Lake, surrounded by the Tibetan Buddhist settlements. A wide and large platform on the face of the Lake is also used for the camping ground. We can see the Yak caravans heading to their destinations carrying rack sack behind. Visiting the monasteries and discovering the hidden social practices enchant us.  The hike offers us a special day with the pleasing scenarios. Then we descend to Ringmo. Overnight at tented camp.

Day 17: Ringmo to Shyangta (2520m): 5-6 hrs

We begin to walk down to Shyanta after breakfast. First, we climb down to Chekpa then the trail through the rocky trail. Passing the barren hills and tiny Bon PO settlements, we reach to a picturesque place called Shyanta. Overnight at tented camp.

Day 18: Shyanta to Jhupal. 5-6 hrs

Following the sloppy trail, we begin the trek from Shyanta. Crossing the Sulighat, we leave a tree line behind us and reach at the top. The super scenic Juphal can be seen from there at below. This is a pretty rough trail, but the motor road has made it easier. Reaching Juphal, we take rest and walk around gradually. Overnight at tented camp. 

Day 19: Fly to Kathmandu via Nepalgunj.

We leave the Dolpo region today with a scenic flight from Jhupal to Nepalgunj. The long isolated foothill journey ends here with memories. From Nepaljung, we catch our next flight to Kathmandu from there. In Kathmandu, first transfer to the hotel from the airport and you have a leisure time in the evening. Rest yourselves and enjoy. Overnight at hotel.

Day 20: Bhaktapur Sightseeing and the rest of the day free.

Traditionally, Bhaktapur is known as Bhadgaon, which is a home of the mediaeval arts and architectures. It is about 13 km east of Kathmandu. The city was believed to have founded in 889 AD in the Lichhavi dynasty. Bhaktapur city is popular as the city of devotees. The centuries old stone sculptures and  wood carving skills are still charming around the Bhaktapur Durbar square. After the tour ends, we take you to the women empowerment project for a visit. The rest day is then for your personal doings that can be used for shopping. Overnight at hotel.

Day 21:  Departure.

At the farewell day, Mountain Delights Treks and Expedition’s representative drops you at the airport for your final departure. Thank you for your wonderful experience with us.

Cost Includes

  • Pick up and drop.
  • Guide and Helpers (porters) assistance, according to the group size.
  • All food (Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner.)
  • Camp accommodation.
  • Hot drinks (Tea and coffee) 3 times a day.
  • All land and flight transportation.
  • TIMS (Trekking information Management System) card.
  • Phoksundo National Park  entry Permit.
  • Lower Dolpo special trekking permit.
  • All food, drinks, Lodge, salary, Insurance, medical equipments, all transport for the team
  • Hotel with BB plan in Kathmandu.
  • Sightseeing with guide, transport and monument entry fees.
  • Down Jacket, sleeping bag and duffel bag.
  • All government taxes.

Cost Excludes

  • Any bar bills (alcoholic drinks, mineral water, and cold drinks), cigarettes, client’s personal insurance, any kind of unforeseen expenses.
  • Lunch and Dinner in Kathmandu.
  • Tips for Guide and Porter (Tips are not compulsory but expected).

What to bring

This list outlines the required things to bring during the trekking hours. There are various selections and brands that you can have your own choice. Those equipments can be bought and hire easily at a reasonable price in Kathmandu.

General

  1. Down sleeping bag (you can borrow with us if required).
  2. Duffel or Rucksack bag  (you can borrow with us if required).
  3. Daypack
  4. Down Jacket (you can borrow with us if required).
  5. Flish liner (you can borrow with us if required).
  6. Walking poles (Walking poles (optional, you can borrow with us if required).
  7. Water bottle with purification tablets.
  8. Hand wash liquids.
  9. Lip guard.
  10. Sun block cream.
  11. Toiletry kit. Be sure to include toilet paper stored in a plastic bag, hand wipes, and liquid hand sanitizer, towel, soap, etc.

Upper Body - Head / Ears / Eyes

  1. Cap and ears covering hat. 
  2. Glacier glasses
  3. Head torch.
  4. Ear-muffs and neck warmer is another piece of gear for extra warmth (optional)

Hand

  1.  Hand gloves (1 light pair and 1 warm pair)

Core Body

  1. T-shirts.
  2. Light and weight thermal tops and warm thermal top.
  3. Light jacket and vest.
  4. Wind and rain jacket.
  5. Shirts and warm shirts.

Lower Body – Legs

  1. Long and short hiking pants.
  2.  Lightweight and warm long underwear.
  3. Rain and windproof trousers and warm trekking trousers.

Feet

  1. Thin and thick socks.
  2. trekking boots, light  shoes and sandle.
  3. Trekking Gaiters.

Medicines and First Aid Kits

(Our guide will carry the first aid kit bag during the trek.  We still recommend you to bring your personal first aid kit as you feel it necessary).

  1. Headache and fever medicine.
  2. Ibuprofen for general aches and pains.
  3. Burnt cream.
  4. Immodium or Pepto bismol capsules for upset stomach and diarrhea.
  5. Diamox (commonly prescribed as Acetazolamide). Please discuss with us before starting to take this medicine.
  6. Antibiotics.
  7. blister treatments such as mole skin, hand plasts band-aids, some waterproof tape, anti-infection ointments, etc.

Miscellaneous

  1. Passport and extra passport photos (2 copies).
  2. Durable wallet / pouch for travel documents, money and passport.
  3. Pocket knife.
  4. bandanas.
  5. Favourite snack foods and energy bars
  6. Paperback books, cards, mp3 player. Avoid players with moving hardware as it may not function. Remember, keep these items light weights
  7. Binoculars.
  8. Camera.

All garments should be kept dry using waterproof stuff sacks or large puncture resistant plastic bags.

1 of 1 review

All the best to you in the Future
All the best to you in the Future
Thank you very much for all help, both with our study project and with the treks.

We are very happy with our study in Nepal and hope to come back again !
Jemmy Bergstrom, Paul Richard
April 6, 2014 at 04:21 am

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