Home » Nepal » Trekking/Hiking » Dolpo Region Trekking

Upper Dolpo Trek

 

Dolpo, a land beyond the Himalayas, conjures up visions of mysterious monasteries, snow leopards and blue sheep. It is situated in the western part of the country, and is one of the most remote regions in Nepal.The Dolpo region is a very isolated area which has been strictly off-limits until only recently, so the traditions and way of life have remained intact. In the autumn of 1990 the first British tour operator organized a trek from east to west, from Pokhara to Jumla through Lower Dolpo.

This trekking route passed many gigantic mountain ranges - Annapurna , Dhaulagiri and Kanjiroba, to name but a few - and passed through Lower Dolpo , at one time a small kingdom in its own right. The trekkers of this regions are enthused greatly about the wild remoteness, the stunning mountain scenery and the fact that the local people had that innocent friendliness peculiar to people who live in excessively remote mountainous regions.

The people that live here number only a few hundred and are among the world's highest dwellers. The villages in Upper Dolpo are 4,300meters and above. It is here specifically that people still practice the pre-Buddhist Bon Po religion. This early sect was almost entirely replaced after Buddhist doctrine began to spread across Tibet in the 9th century.Peter Matthiessen's "The Snow Leopard" and David Snellgrove's "Himalayan Pilgrimage" have contributed to the mystique and attraction of Dolpo. Both writers visited the Shey Gompa, to the north of the Phoksumdo Lake, inner Dolpo. This is the goal of most trekkers but this Dolpo trek will take you even further into this mysterious land.

 

Trip Cost start from : US$2890.00 perperson

Trip Length :28 days

Accommodation: Hotel/Tented camp

Activities: Trekking, Sightseeing

Best Month: Mar - May & Sept - Nov

Grade: Strenuous

Group Size: Minimum 2 pax

Max Elevation: 5,190m/17,028ft at Numa La Pass

Meal: Full board on trek

Transportation: Flight/ vehicle

Trek/Tour Style: Camping

 

 

Day 1:Arrival in Kathmandu - (1360m) You will be warm welcomed at airport by our office representative and then you will transfer to hotel. Our staff will give brief explanation about the program. This day you can stay within the hotel or enjoy night at Thamel, Kingsway especially famous for clubs and bars.

Day 2:Sightseeing Around Kathmandu Valley This day, you will visit many cultural heritages, which includes some of the famous world’s heritages like Pashupatinath, Swyambhunath, Kathmandu Durbar Square, Bouddhanath stupa and many more. You can do shopping various Nepalese cultural stuffs in this day. And Back to hotel for overnight.

Day 03: Fly from Kathmandu to Nepalgunj & transfer to Hotel
As per the flight schedule for Nepalgunj we transfer to the domestic airport for one and half hour scenic flight to Nepalgung. At Nepalgunj we will have time in the late afternoon or evening to have a look around the town which is situated on the southern Nepal border with India. Here it is quite hot and tropical in character.Day 04: Fly from Nepalgunj to Juphal (Dolpo) (2,320m/7,610ft), trek to Dunai, 2-3 hrs walks
Day 4:After a pleasant overnight at Nepalgunj, early morning transfer to airport for the 45 minute flight to Juphal over the Himalayan foothills, with views of Annapurna and Dhaulagiri peaks to the north. On arriving at Juphal our trekking staffs will receive you, who have walked all the way from Nepalgunj with the camping gear and food supply taking 5-6 days. Here at Juphal a short 2-3 hrs walk from the airstrip leads to our overnight camp at Dunai village. Our first day adventure begins with an hour downhill walk through the village below the airstrip, then leading through the terraced fields to the Bheri River and the narrow gorge taking 2-3 hours to camp at Dunai. This is a much larger village or small township, with a new hospital and it is administrate headquarter of the Dolpo region. Here we have ample time for leisure walk around the village.

Day 5:  Trek to Ankhe, 5-6 hrs
From the camp at Dunai, route diverts from the King Mahendra statue to cross the new suspension bridge and turning west, following the trail past the hospital. The path soon begins to climb up the side of the treeless Thulo Bheri valley, where it crests a ridge and then enters the Phoksundo river valley, finally reaching another ridge which is marked by cairns at 2,499m/8,197ft. During the walk can be seen excellent view of the Kagmara Peak up the valley. This wonderful walk leads to a large side canyon, then descending gently on the long downhill slope through the scattered houses and walnut groves to a stream at 2,810m/9,217ft the trail below the stream leads to Dhera, a winter settlement where people from higher villages keep herds of cows and goats, however the route leads the upper trail climbing to Rahagaon, a Thakuri village at 2,900m/9,512ft, where there is a Gompa dedicated to the local god, Mastha, guardians of this village. Trek from here passes through the lower part of Rahagaon and then descending to the village water supply at the Phoksundo khola. Passing through another canyon, the path heads downhill through deep dark forests to a large stream, finally emerging at the entrance to the Shey Phoksundo National Park at Ankhe (2,896m/9,499ft) where we will stay for the overnight camp.(Breakfast, lunch & dinner are Included)

Day 6:  Trek to Sulighat, 5-6 hrs
The path from this camp leads to small ups and downs along the forested riverbed, then ascending steeply to about 2,900m. The ups and downs can begin to get a bit monotonous, but there are several streams along the way that offer a chance to cool off. The trail eventually leaves the forests and traverses a grassy slope high above the river. After a while the path once begin to descend steeply into forest until it reaches a cliff, whereby a dizzying drop on a wobbly stone staircase to the river bank has to be undertaken. You can almost look down between your toes to see the fast-flowing river below. After reaching the river at 2,950m, the trail becomes a collection of rocks and sticks that form a dyke along the river bank. It's hard to imagine how the local people bring their yaks and cows along this trail, but they do. Journey continues upstream to a bridge near Ryajik village for the overnight camp 3,500m/11,480ft, after a good day's walk. (Breakfast, lunch & dinner are Included)

Day 7:Trek to Phoksundo Lake - (3620m) 4 hrs Walk It takes about 4 hrs to reach Phoksundo Lake. We have to climb steep about 2hrs. before reaching the top, we can have the new of Nepal’s highest waterfall, a spectacular waterfall of 107m high knows Phoksundo waterfall as known as sunlight waterfall. Then we will descend from the top to get Ringmo village a small charming village. People residing here practice Bonpo religion, religion related to Buddhism but it is older than Buddhism. The religion was founded by Buddha Lonpa Shanrab Miwo, 18000 years ago. It is believe that Dolpa used to be the centre of Bon Kindom called Zhang. It a big and powerful kingdom in present western and north western Tibet. It is believed that in the century Zhang was defeated by the Buddhist kingdom of Tibet and Bonpo disappeared completely, but still some people practice it. Overnight at tented camp, inclusive of full board meal..

Day 08:  Rest Day at Phoksundo Lake
A well deserved rest day free from packing, at Phoksundo we can go for a short hike to the village of Ringmo and its Tibetan Buddhist Monastery is well worth a visit.(Breakfast, lunch & dinner are Included)

Day 09 :Trek to Phoksundo Khola (3,507m) - 6 hrs
You follow the trail that skirts the edge of the lake itself. This precarious trail is suspended on a gangway of wood supported on pegs, driven into crevices in the rocks and signals the remoteness of the area you are about to enter. You go very steeply up, to 4,040m, and then plunge down again to the valley bottom to enter the flood plain of the Phoksundo Khola and trek to your night stop alongside the river, within the confines of the forest to avoid the worst of the wind which is prevalent in the valley bottom. Overnight at tented camps.
(Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner Included)

Day 10:  Trek to Phoksundo Bhanjyang, 6-7 hrs
Today's first hour walk leads along the level path through a glacial valley that now heads due north. At the confluence of the Phoksundo Khola and another mountain stream, there is an old wooden bridge. Here taking the barely distinct path to the north-east of the valley. There is no trail as such, so it is necessary to clamber over the rocks and boulders and to ford a stream that rushes down the steep valley. A long climb brings us to a sheep meadow where the trail veers up a steep ravine. A hard climb to the top brings to yet another valley where one can see the Kang-La, the pass which will lead towards Shey Gompa. Overnight camp will be just before the pass in a place that Peter Matthiessen christened 'Snowfields Camp'.(Breakfast, lunch & dinner are Included)

Day 11:Cross the Kang La pass (5,151m) and trek to Shey Gompa (4,126m) - 7 hrs
The somewhat indistinct track is physically demanding, especially on the loose slate screed. It will take about 2.5 to 3 hours to reach the top of the Kang La. The views from the top are magnificent and well worth all the hard work. The height of the Kang La is variously given between 5,200m and 5,500m depending on the map one uses. On descending steeply to the valley floor, not more than 45 minutes, you make a long meandering trek along the banks of the river, crossing it once. A red chorten heralds your arrival at Shey Gompa where a quaint wooden log bridge leads up to the Shey compound. Overnight at tented camps.
(Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner Included)

Day 12:Rest Day - Shey Gompa You can explore around Tsakang Gompa which is at about 457m. It is not really a monastery but a retreat. Tsakang had been a meditation centre of many famous lamas from Tibet. Shey Gompa belongs to the Chaiba community, followers of the Padmasambhava and Kagyu sects. It was the first Kagyupa monastery and its founder was the lama Ten-szin-Ra-Pa. The monastery was built during the 11th century. Shey is famous for its ancient Buddhist culture. In Dolpo the ancient Tibetan way of life combines animism with the teachings of Buddha. Drutup Yeshe introduced Buddhism in the Dolpo valley. Many years ago he came to Dolpo and came across a wild people whose supreme God was a 'fierce mountain spirit'. Crystal mountain is to the west of Shey monastery. It is a very strange mountain indeed. Its contorted cliffs are laced with quartz and embedded with a rich variety of marine fossils. Shey Gompa stands above the confluence of Kangju nala and Yeju nala. Near the confluence there is a group of prayer mills turned by water wheels. Overnight at tented camp, inclusive of full board meal.

Day 13:Trek to Namgung - (4430m) - 6 hrs Walk To get to Namgung, we have to cross the pass Sheyla which is also called Geln La is about 5000m. While we are through the Glen pass, we can see beautiful view of northern part of Tibetan plateau, which is highest plateau in the world. To the east we can see Mustang. After through pass we have to descend to the pastures of Namgung. Peoples of Namgung heartily welcome us. It is a beautiful place with friendly environment. Overnight at tented camp inclusive all board of meals.

Day 14:  Trek to Saldang, 4-5 hours
On leaving the Namduna Gaun our route leads to a climb up a scree slope. Further on it begins a long traverse along some dusty barren mountains. After 3-4 hours of hard climb, Saldang 3,620m/ 11,874ft appears below on a plateau high above the Nam Khongmala. It has a picturesque appearance. Saldang is the largest village of the inner Dolpo area. Though the village lies at about the same altitude as Ringmo it is totally different then Ringmo, a Himalayan village is situated below the tree line while Saldang belongs to the arid zone of the Trans-Himalayan Tibetan plateau. The village stretches for nearly two kilometers on an open slope. Saldang consists of five villages having about eighty well built houses with nearly six hundred people. Saldang is a prosperous village not only agriculturally but also for its strategic location on a trade route to Tibet. After the Chinese invasion of Tibet in 1959, trade with Tibet was virtually stopped. It has been restored to some extent through the barter system by which Tibetan salt reaches mid-Nepal. The Drokpa people from the western plains of Tibet collect salt from the dried lakes north of Tsangpo.(Breakfast, lunch & dinner are Included)

Day 15: Trek to Saldang (3,903m) - 4 hrs
Leaving Namgung monastery and start climbing. Further on it begins a long thrilling traverse along some dusty barren mountains. Looking down into the valley bottom it is very evident that the people have made best use of the fertile valley as one sees the neat terraced fields showing bright patches of green and ripening crops. You ascend before going down steep slopes to the picturesque village of Salding, situated on a plateau high above the Nam Khong nala and the biggest village of the inner Dolpo area. Though the village lies at about the same altitude as Ringmo, it is totally different. Ringmo, a Himalayan village is situated below the tree line while Saldang belongs to the arid zone of the trans-Himalayan Tibetan plateau. The village stretches for two kilometers on an open slope and consists of five villages having eighty well-built houses with nearly six hundred villagers. It is prosperous, not only agriculturally, but also for its strategic location on a trade route to Tibet. Overnight at tented camps.
(Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner Included)

Day 16 - Trek to Sibu (3,942m) - 6 hrs
After leaving Saldang on the way down to the river bed you pass through terraced fields, Stupas, Chortens, heaps of Mani stones and a Chaiba monastery. Namdo, the next village is also prosperous with sixty houses having nearly four hundred inhabitants. It stretches for more than 5 kms on the high slopes to the left of Nam Khong Khola. The Namdo monastery is located near the river bed. There is also another monastery on top of a high cliff. You camp near the small Settlement of Sibu, right on th

Day 17:Trek to foot of the Jengla - (4480m) - 4-5 hrs Walk We will follow the line of the river valley and the trail is easy going initially. But after two hours, we must make another stream before turning into side valley where the rise becomes very sharp. Overnight at tented camp with full board of meals.

Day 18:  Trek to Tokyu Gaon via Jeng la, 5-6 hrs
Morning trek leads to two hours climb towards the top of the Jeng La (5,090m/16,695ft). An excellent view of snow ranges emerges to the south. The north face of the Dhaualgiri massif shines in the morning light. After a wonderful moment here at the pass, our walk leads to descend on the rough path towards Tarap valley. By afternoon we come to the green valley which leads us on the pleasant track down towards Tarap Chu. Tarap is a fascinating valley with vast plains in high mountains. It extends twenty kilo meters along the river. Tarap Chu is having ten villages with its cultivated fields and many gompas, chortens of both sects. We stop for the night at Tokyu monastery (4,200m/13,776ft). This monastery also belongs to the Chaiba sect.(Breakfast, lunch & dinner are Included)

Day 19: Trek to Dho Tarap (4,090m) - 4.5 hrs
Before leaving Tokyu a short visit can be made to the Chaiba Gompa. The trail is broad and well traveled, making the going easy and there is evidence of work in the fields, where the women will be bringing in the harvest - the men are away bringing down the herds of animals for the forthcoming winter. There are many Mani walls but some of the Chortens are in a bad state of repair. The ' French School ' is just outside the village of Dho Tarap where you have your night stop. Tarap is inhabited mostly by Magars who have lived here for generations but also by a few Tibetans. They wear home-spun clothing that is sometimes dyed maroon and they favor Tibetan style Somba (boots with upturned toes) for footgear. Men and women often wear both religious amulets and strings of coral and turquoise. The inhabitants of this village are both Bon Po and Buddhist (Nyingmapa). In the afternoon a walk up to the Buddhist Gompa is very worthwhile. There is a resident lama who is very happy to show off his monastery and might even let you see his private Gompa and the Tankas he has made himself. The Bon Gompa is about half an hour's walk from camp. Overnight at tented campss.
(Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner Included)

Day 20:  Rest Day at Dho Tarap
Today, we have a full rest day or exploration of local areas. During the visit you will have an opportunity to make friends with the people from Dolpo. They wear home spun clothing that is sometimes dyed maroon and they prefer Tibetan style somba (boots with upturned toes) for footwear. Men and women often wear both religious amulets and strings of coral and turquoise. The villagers are both Bon Po and Buddhist of Nyingmapa sect. The Buddhist gompa is the nearest one to the campsite, the Bon Gompa is further 40 minutes walk.(Breakfast, lunch & dinner are Included)

Day 21:Trek to Serkam - (3623ft.) - 7 hrs Walk The next two days are longish with a choice of several different campsites so the itinerary can be flexible. Your route follows the course of the Tarap Khola, generally downhill. You go through narrow gorges with the river rushing through. One may see blue sheep, marmots, yaks, sheep and goats and perhaps meet people from Dolpo taking their flocks of sheep and goats to lower pastures for the winter. The afternoon brings more undulations in the path when it leaves the immediate course of the river. There is evidence of improvements to the trail where parts of the rock have been blasted out. You will also see the first of the modern steel suspension bridges which have been built to facilitate movement of people and animals. The track is very narrow in places. Overnight at tented camp, inclusive of full board meal.

Day: 22  Trek to Tarakot, 4-5 hrs
Today from this camp path follows an indistinct trail to the village of Lalberi. Then passing through an area of impressive forest, before descending into another gorge our walk continue following the river again downstream to reach Tarakot where colourful terraced fields greet us. Tarakot (2,537m/8,321ft) is an old fortress town known by the local people as Dzong, meaning 'fort'. Before the Gorkha dynasty Tarakot was the capital and had a dzong. The famous Sandul gompa lies about 8 km east of Tarakot and at the junction of Barbung Khola and Tarap Chu. It stands on a knoll to the south of Bheri River and at one time supervised collections of tolls for the trading caravans traversing an area called Tichu Rong. It is possible to camp by the river about 150 meters below Tarakot, near the police post or we climb a steep hill for over an hour to the small village on a spur on the other side of a valley opposite Tarakot. There are chortens and a gompa here on the edge of a grassy plateau, with an interesting solitary tree.(Breakfast, lunch & dinner are Included)

Day 23 - Trek to Dunai (2,052m) - 5 hrs
The trail is mostly down and fairly firm. Walking beside the Bheri river, you use the ingenious path built twenty feet above the river. All too soon you have reached the village of Dunai and the camp site you used before. You will now have completed the circuit of mysterious land Dolpo and a celebration party is sure to happen. Overnight at tented camps.
(Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner Included)

Day 24 - Trek to Dunai (2,052m) - 5 hrs
The trail is mostly down and fairly firm. Walking beside the Bheri river, you use the ingenious path built twenty feet above the river. All too soon you have reached the village of Dunai and the camp site you used before. You will now have completed the circuit of mysterious land Dolpo and a celebration party is sure to happen. Overnight at tented camps.
(Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner Included)

Day 25 - Trek to Juphal (2,404m) - 3 hrs
You now retrace your steps to Juphal. Initially the way is flat but the final hour up to your destination seems steeper than you remember on Day One! Overnight at tented camps.
(Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner Included)

Day 26:Fly from Jhuphal to Nepalgunj to Kathmandu
Early morning, a short scenic flight for thirty five minutes to Nepalgunj, over the Himalayan foothills overlooking stunning views of the main peaks including Annapurna and Dhaulagiri to the north. On arrival at Nepalgunj depending upon the connecting flight schedule to Kathmandu. If it is in the afternoon have time for few hours refreshment in the comfort of the Hotel Batika or similar at Nepalgunj. Then connect with the flight back to Kathmandu.(Breakfast Included)

Day 27:  Leisure at Kathmandu
This pleasant day you may have full day at leisure and either relax at hotel or explore the Thamel and overnight at hotel.(Breakfast & farewell dinner Included)

Day 28:  Departure from Kathmandu
Today is free or last minute shopping for souvenirs or gift to your family, friends or relatives for you until your departure flight/drive or to commence any extra trips or activities you may have booked with us. If departing, you will be transferred to the International Airport for your departure flight to your onwards destination. (Breakfast Included)

COST COVERS: 

  • Conservation/national park fees and all government taxes.
  • Accommodation in the Lodges in Trekking areas
  • All required  land Transportation  during the Trip
  • Experienced & professional Trekking Guide, his Salary, food & Insurance Necessary number of porters
  • Kathmandu Valley city sightseeing tour
  • Kathmandu Hotel on BB plan Porter’s salary, foods., insurance &equipments
  • All meals( Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner) during the trek
  • First aid box.
  • Celebration dinner after the trip in Kathmandu.

 

COST DOES NOT COVER:

  •  Medical/personal high risk insurance (suggest have rescue coverage policy as well)
  •  Personal Clothing/Gears  for the trekking
  •  Tips for  Nepalese staffs.
  •  Cost of personal expenses, shopping, Beverage  bills etc.

Useful info

Map

Q) How many people will there be in my group?

A) Our philosophy results in smaller groups (often 10-12 participants) to maximise everyone's enjoyment and safety. Maximum and minimum group size is specified for each adventure. Private groups may choose to have a larger (or smaller) group and we'll work with you to design just the adventure you're after.

Q) What type of people comes along?

A) Our trips tend to attract a wide range of people, both women and men, from about 20 to 60 or more years old, with an extremely wide range of travel and climbing experience. Participants tend to be seeking a good quality, safe, well supported, good value and enjoyable adventure rather than the lowest cost. We have a good proportion of return clients, referrals from return clients and people who have found us by word of mouth, and it is not uncommon for people to invite their spouse, friends or adult children on their next adventure, particularly for trekking trips. The nationalities of our clients are also varied, but we do have a high proportion of Australians as well as people form the UK, New Zealand, USA, South Africa and more. Most participants make the effort to prepare for their adventure which helps make life enjoyable for everyone.

Q) Am I too old? Is my child too young?

A) Reasonable physical and mental ability are required on many Alfresco adventures, and we're very happy to talk to you about any specific concerns you may have. We do ask participants to get their doctor's approval and require our participants to provide some medical history so our leaders can be appropriately prepared while they are in the field. Young children may find the rigors of trekking require more resilience than they are used to. In short - it very much depends on the person. You will find guidance on preparing for your trek on each adventure's web page (search here), our info packs and trip dossiers.

Q) Who is the leader?

A) Alfreosc adventures are led by experienced, capable, first-aid qualified and personable guides. On Himalayan adventures your guide will have specialist experience in expeditions and altitude and for climbs may be a Sherpa mountain guide trained under the NMIA or equivalents to UIAGM system.

Q) What about the local staff?

A) Our local staff have a vital role (in fact many roles!) to play in making your adventure a wonderful experience. We carefully select good people and help them to build their skills and competencies through formal and informal training and immersion in our adventures. We're sure you'll enjoy the experience of sharing a walk with the locals, and having the opportunity to learn from them about their world and perspectives. The high level of service we like to provide means that camping treks and climbs usually have quite a number of staff, including kitchen staff, porters and local sherpas or guides. Alfresco supports the good work of the IPPG (International Porter Protection Group) and places a high level of importance on the health, safety and well-being of our local staff and provide accommodation and food for our local staff.

Q) Will we be camping?

A) Another aspect that varies with the specific adventure, but many of our treks and all of our climbs journey from comfortable hotel to pretty comfortable camping and back again (which always makes that hotel feel good!). We find that individual tents work well, as do double-thickness sleeping mats and trip-specific sleeping bags. In the Khumbu and Annapurna regions we use the incredible infrastructure and stay in 'teahouses'. These are often fairly Spartan twin rooms with walls, window and a simple bed. Our trekkers (including on the trekking phase of our climbing adventures) dine in a shelter or tent at a tables and chairs which makes life more comfortable! In many places we can often arrange a small amount of electricity for charging cameras etc, but this is not always possible.

Q) What's the food like?

A) Food arrangements are specific to each adventure, but we provide three meals a day while on the track. In cities we provide breakfast and, depending on the trip and the nature of the activities may also cater for lunch and dinner for the group. In the Himalayas our kitchen staffs have been training for years and work magic over gas or kerosene stoves in their kitchen tent.

While trekking our cooks prepare a varied menu of wholesome, tasty and plentiful food using fresh ingredients where possible. A trekking breakfast in the Himalayas usually includes cooked foods e.g. egg, tomatoes, cereal or porridge, toast & spreads and fruit. Lunch is often soup and a packed lunch, or a cooked lunch.

Dinners are generally soup, a main meal (one of many Asian or European style dishes) veges, and a dessert (fruit to custard to baked apple pie!)

Drinking water: will be provided at camps (collected with care, filtered, treated with chemicals and/or boiled), and at lunch time where possible. It is wise to carry a small amount of purifying chemicals (e.g. Iodine or chlorine) with you, in case you happen to need water at an odd time. In the developing world care should be taken to avoid untreated water and potentially contaminated foods like uncooked salads and some fruit. Bottled water is available in cities, but of course you can treat tap water in your own bottle too.

Q) Toilet facilities en route?

A) Always carry your own loo paper Good toilet facilities are usually available in hotels & restaurants While trekking an expedition toilet tent/shack and pit will often be prepared away from tracks, camps and water resources.

Q) Do I need to have trekking experience?

A) Some outdoor experience will make your trek less confronting and thus probably more enjoyable. Look for more info in the pages about your trip of interest.

Q) Will I have to carry a lot of weight?

A) The Alfresco philosophy is about supporting you to succeed, so we use porters (or yaks, horses etc) to transport our group equipment as well as your own bag of trekking gear, so you will be able to trek with a day pack. Those on climbing adventures should check the trip info pack.

Q) What should I bring?

A) There is a comprehensive gear list for each adventure, but in short: good footwear, layers of breathable clothing for day and night, day pack, trekking poles (they seem to help relieve stress on knees and ankles), and tools to enjoy your adventure.

Q) What if I get sick or have an accident?

A) Despite the best precautions, people do sometimes fall ill, sprain something or develop symptoms of AMS. Our expedition leaders will manage your care keeping in mind what's best for you and the rest of the group. Our precautions include first aid qualifications and kits, emergency communications, evacuation plans, your travel insurance cover and our pre-preparation and medical advisors.

Q) What about altitude sickness?

A) AMS Acute Mountain Sickness (or altitude sickness) is the body reacting to the stress of high altitude. It is a concern for trekkers in the Himalayas and elsewhere above about, approximately, say (is that enough vagueness!) 3,000m. Exposure to high altitude can lead to a number of 'normal' physiological reactions as well as mild to extremely serious illness and even death. Arun takes the risk of AMS seriously and work hard to avoid and minimise it. We ask our adventurers to do the same and we educate, coach and monitor our trekkers and climbers in how to take care of themselves and each other and what to look out for. Our treks are designed with relatively slow acclimatisation schedules, rest days and alternative options. And we have medications and a number of management strategies in place should they be required. Don't be unduly concerned, but please talk to us if you have questions.

Q) I don't have much time, can't we do it quicker?

A) Our adventures are designed around what we feel is the optimum itinerary, which incorporates adequate time for the suitably fit participant to do the trek comfortably; a little flexibility for weather, illness, unforeseen delays; time to enjoy the experience, your trek colleagues and staff; learn about your surroundings if you wish; and, for altitude adventures, a fairly slow acclimatisation regime to minimise the risk of altitude sickness and maximise your chance of reaching your goals. All while also trying to minimise your time away from home. We would generally not recommend shorter itineraries (such as those used by less scrupulous operators) unless you were genuinely prepared to turn back if you (or your travel companion) becomes affected by AMS. If you really don't have the time available, we can perhaps suggest an alternative itinerary that will work for you.

Q) I've heard there is good rafting/safaris/diving. Can I do that?

A) We can certainly arrange for you to visit one of Nepal's several national parks where you may be lucky enough to spot a tiger or leopard, bear or rhino from atop an elephant, on foot or in a jeep. You may also like to take a white water raft down one of the fabulous Himalayan Rivers for a few hours or a few days. Or a mountain biking trip, a leisurely stay by lovely Lake Phewa in Pokhara (where, incidentally, you could fly with the eagles in a tandem paraglider), or have a guided tour of one of the Kathmandu Valley's ancient cities. There are adventures enough in Nepal to keep you busy for months!

Q) My friend would like to visit, but isn't really interested in the trekking...

A) Your friend, spouse, family, colleagues may like to join you in our base city at the beginning or end of your trek. We can easily arrange extra accommodation, and places on our day tours, but we may also be able to arrange a series of day trips, a short relaxing trip into the country-side or an island, scenic flights above the Himalayas, wildlife safaris and so on. Ask us for ideas, or suggest your own.