Makalu (8,463) is the fifth highest mountain in the world. It is an isolated peak, located just 14 miles east of Mount Everest. Its size alone is impressive, but its structure, that of a perfect pyramid with four sharp ridges, make this mountain all the more spectacular.
It has proved to be a challenging climb, as only five of its first sixteen attempts were successful. Previously, it had been admired and studied by several Everest parties, but like so many other giants in Khumbu region, it was not attempted until the summit of Everest had been attained in 1954. A French group first climbed Makalu in year 1955.
|Day 01||Arrival Kathmandu.|
|Day 05||Transfer to the airport and fly to Tumlingtar. Trek to Khadbari (1040m).|
|Day 06||Trek to Mane Bhanjyang (1087m)|
|Day 07||Trek to Chichiara (1980m).|
|Day 08||Trek to Num (1560m).|
|Day 09||Trek to Sheduwa (1500m).|
|Day 10||Trek to Tashi Goan (2100m)|
|Day 11||Trek to Kauma (3760m).|
|Day 12||Trek to Dobato (3700m).|
|Day 13||Trek to Jark Kharka.(4800m).|
|Day 14||Hillary Base Camp (4600m).|
|Day 15||Makalu base camp (4870m).|
|Day 16||Higher camp.|
|Day 17-50||Climbing Period Mt. Makalu.|
|Day 51||Cleaning up Base Camp.|
|Day 52||Yak Kharka|
|Day 53||Mumbuk (3520m).|
|Day 54||Tashi Goan.|
|Day 57||Khandbari (1040m).|
|Day 58||Tumlingtar and fly back to Kathmandu.|
|Day 60||Transfer to airport and departure.|
The technical difficulty of this climb is not high, but it is physically demanding with long days and sections with a lot of exposure. The trip is ideally suited to strong, experienced climbers who want to climb the peak in its own right, or to use the trip to gain experience for higher peaks in the future. To move efficiently and enjoyably we recommend you have experience of Alpine PD+/AD routes and /or an ability to climb Scottish grade 1/ll winter routes and previous experience of altitude of at least 4800m before.
A TYPICAL TREKKING DAY
Starts around seven am (not a problem as it’s usual to go to bed early!) with you packing your overnight gear into a kit bag before enjoying a hearty breakfast ready to leave camp whilst it’s still fairly cool. The pace on the trek will be leisurely with plenty of time to enjoy the scenery, take photos, chat to the locals and keep hydrated. Lunch is usually in a fine spot by the side of the trail and, most days, you will be arriving at our overnight camp mid afternoon ready for a well earned cup of tea. This leaves an hour or so to rest or explore before a three course evening meal. It is quite remarkable what the locals can produce in these remote circumstances.
The Post and Pre monsoon conditions experienced from October into mid-December. April-May are usually very fair, dry and stable. Daytime temperatures are pleasantly warm in the valleys (20-30C) whilst cool to very cold (especially with wind chill) high on Baruntse. Night time temperatures are cold to very cold (possibly as low as minus 30C) and you should make sure you have a very warm sleeping bag (-30c), an expedition weight down jacket and good quality down mitts.
Food on the trek and at Base Camp is excellent and designed to stimulate your appetite despite frequent altitude induced loss of appetite. Breakfast includes porridge and cereal followed by eggs (fried, boiled poached or omelettes) and either bread or chapattis with jam, honey, peanut butter etc. Lunch starts with juice and may include chips, rice, lentils, vegetables, salad, sandwiches, beans, tinned fish and tinned meat. Dessert is usually fresh/tinned fruit and tea. The evening meal always starts with soup (often with a healthy dose of garlic to aid acclimatisation) accompanied by poppadums, popcorn or prawn crackers. The main meal varies from local style – Dal Bhat (rice and lentils with an onion and vegetable sauce), Yak stew, momos etc. to western style – yak burgers, chips, pasta, even pizza! Desserts are equally appealing and include apple pie, cake, custard etc. You will not be hungry! Once on the mountain we use dehydrated meals supplemented by chocolate, muesli bars, cheese, nuts, salami, etc
IMPORTANT – The small print
Please note, flights to and from Lukla can be delayed due to the weather. Please be patient and bring a good book to read. If the flight is delayed overnight accommodation is included on a B&B basis. In cases of longer delays, optional helicopter flights are sometimes offered at an extra cost.
MISSED INTERNATIONAL FLIGHTS
We allow one extra day in the itinerary for bad weather. If you are delayed longer (unusual) we can re-book your International flight but additional costs may/will be incurred. Tickets can be changed according to availability and the class of ticket, you may need to upgrade and be flexible on your return date. All additional payment would need to paid for in Kathmandu (card payments accepted).
We employ local staff to work alongside our own group leader giving employment beyond farming. We ask that you restrict showers to those lodges that have electricity or solar power, thus reducing deforestation. Be prepared to wash using bowls of warm water or ‘wet ones’. We recommend you dispose of burnable rubbish at the lodges but take other items such as bottles and batteries back to Kathmandu. Avoid plastic bottles of water by bringing iodine tablets and a refillable bottle to drink local pumped water. Soft drinks should be purchased in glass bottles that can be recycled.
Our itineraries generally allow sufficient time for your body to acclimatise. The best way to avoid any problems is to do everything slowly, walk at a gentle steady pace and drink plenty of fluid. Our leader will give an appropriate briefing on arrival.
Just in case your main luggage goes missing en route, it is a good idea to wear your boots on the plane. Most other things can be replaced but comfortable, well worn-in boots are more difficult to replace easily.
A detailed equipment list is provided on booking. Specialist items such as sleeping bags and down jackets can be hired or purchased.
For your own comfort travel light. Normally airlines restrict baggage to 20kg and the Lukla flight 15kg, but you will be wearing boots and one set of trekking clothes. Some items can be left at the hotel for your return.
VISAS AND PERMITS
US/UK citizens and most EU nationals can purchase Visas on arrival. All other countries should check with their local embassy. Passports must be valid for at least six months after the end date of the trip.
Most meals are inclusive, please see the key above. Individuals are responsible for drinks throughout and hotel meals which gives the flexibility to choose where you eat.
Nepalese Rupee. UK Sterling, Euros and US Dollars can easily be changed in Kathmandu. ATM (cash machines) are available in Kathmandu.
Tipping is generally expected and part of everyday life. We generally tip our own local staff as a whole. It is also usual to put approximately 1000 rupees into the pot for the Puja or mountain blessing – a very important part of Himalayan climbing.
An early morning spectacular flight over Everest.
Chitwan Wildlife Safari (plus 4 days)
You can round off your trek with a three day wildlife safari. This includes a jeep safari, jungle walk, river canoe trip and elephant ride combined with a cultural program in search of rhino and the famous Bengal tiger.