Salpa High Pass Lodge trek follows along a section of the Great Himalayan Trail (GHT) to offer incredible alpine views of the Everest region. This is Sherpa country, and here you will encounter the famed Sherpa people who have made this place their home for over 1000 years. You will also encounter the Rai people, a distinct ethnic group that is distantly related to the Sherpas as well as the other mountain tribal people of Nepal. There are rhododendron and pine forests to trek through, raging mountain rivers to cross over on suspension bridges, magnificent waterfalls,and of course, incredible snowcapped mountain peaks of the Himalayas. This section of the GHT offers very good places to stay, but lacks the number of tourists as would be found in the Khumbu/Everest region. In fact, your party may be the only foreigners you see for most of this trek.
Swiss Nepal Family Trekking & Expedition is pleased to be able to offer this unique trek as part of our portfolio of trekking options in the Everest Region. It is a moderate trek with some elevations, but nothing too strenuous. It is a wonderful option for people who enjoy local culture and scenery without having to deal with the crowds.
DAY 1 – Arrival at Kathmandu, transfer to Hotel
DAY 2 – Sightseeing in Kathmandu, briefing at hotel on trek.
DAY 3 – Fly to Tumlingtar (elev. 1041 m), stay overnight at local tea house.
DAY 4 – Trek to Majuwdanda (elev. 800 m): Trekking time 5 hours.
DAY 5 – Trek to Salpa Phedi (elev. 1530 m): Trekking time 8 hours.
DAY 6 – Trek to Sanam (elev. 2834 m) via Salpa Pass (elev. 3349 m). Trekking time 8 hours.
DAY 7 – Trek to Khiraule (elev. 2535 m): Trekking time 8 hours.
DAY 8 – Trek to Sibuche (elev. 2800m) via Surke La/Charakot Pass (elev. 3070 m): 7 hours.
DAY 9 – Trek to Paiya (elev. 2767 m) via arkung La/Chaduk La (elev 3161 m) and Kari La(elev. 3059 m): Trekking time 7 hours.
DAY 10 – Trek to Lukla (elev. 2840 m): Trekking time 4 hours
DAY 11 – Fly to Kathmandu
DAY 12 – Free day in Kathmandu
DAY 13 – Departure
DAY 1 – Arrival in Kathmandu: You will arrive at Tribhuvan International Airport where you will be picked up by a representative of Swiss Nepal Family Trekking & Expedition. You will be taken by private car to your Three Star Hotel where you will have dinner and relax after your long flight.
DAY 2 – Free Day and Briefing: Today is a free day that you can enjoy doing sightseeing in Kathmandu. There are plenty of things to see and do, and your representative at Swiss Nepal Family Trekking & Expedition can help you to plan out a tour, even providing a car and guide if you desire. There will be a briefing on the trek later in the day.
DAY 3 – Fly to Tumlingtar (elev. 1041 m): It is an early morning flight to the Tumlingtar. From here, we can either rest for the day or do some local exploring.
DAY 4 – Trek to Majuwadanda (elev. 800 m): It is amazing that even though we are the shadow of Mt. Everest, we can find such a low elevation. But today, we will be actually trekking to a village that is only 800 m above sea-level. The trail drops steeply a first from Tumlingtar as we finally cross a small river on an old wooden suspension bridge (320 meters long!) We follow along the Arun River, passing a couple of small tea shops along the way. We reach the village of Chewabasi where we can have a choice of local restaurants for lunch. We continue after lunch, crossing the Arun River to reach the village of Kattike. This is an idyllic setting with traditional houses overlooking beautiful terraced fields. We continue climbing and will be rewarded with a wonderful view of the Arun River Valley below us. Our destination is Majawadanda where we will spend the night in a local mountain lodge. Trekking time is 5 hours.
DAY 5 – Trek to Salpa Phedi (elev. 1530 m): It is uphill today as we leave Majuwadanda as we begin on the GHT. We are entering the area of Solukhumba Section. Today is a long trek, just over 22 km which will vary from steep to flat, depending upon the local terrain. There will be great views of Mt. Makalu (5th highest mountain in the world). There are a few settlements in this area as we walk alongside the Liknuwa Khola River. There are times we pass through sub-tropical jungle with monkeys screeching in the trees. There will be a number of suspension bridges we will cross as we travel between the various small little mountain villages. We finally arrive at Salpa Phedi where we will spend the night in a local guest house. Trekking time is 8 hours today.
DAY 6 – Trek to Sanam (elev. 2834 m) via Salpa Pass (3349 m): It is a day of climbing on the GHT. The trek is only 14 km, but we will have to climb upwards of 1819 meters. It will be steep at times, but the views more than worth it from Salpa Pass. Here we can see Mt. Everest, Mt. Makalu and Mt. Kanchenjunga, each over 8000 meters in height. We pass through fragrant pine forests and by several small villages. This is primarily Sherpa country and we will encounter the Sherpa people in their traditional setting. We will pass Buddhist stupas and chhortens with prayer flags fluttering in the never ending breezes of the Himalayas. When we reach Sanam, we will stay next door to a monastery where we will spend the night. Trekking time is 8 hours.
DAY 7 – Trek to Khiraule (elev. 2535 m): It is a steep descent down, dropping nearly 1500 meters and then a tough climb upwards again as we trek to Khiraule village. The trail goes through rhododendron forests which are in bloom in March and April. At various overlooks, there are a number of places to see snowcapped peaks, including Mt. Numbur. We will pass the Makalu Barun National Park Office. There will be great views of Mera Peak, which is a popular climbing mountains (elev. 6476). We will stay at a tea house near Khiraule village. Trekking time is 8 hours.
DAY 8 – Trek to Sibuche (elev. 2800m ) via Surke La/Charakot Pass (elev. 3070 m): Today is some stunning scenery as we climb up to Surke La/Charakot Pass. We will pass through rhododendron forests as we see a number of fast flowing mountain streams. We also will encounter an incredibly beautiful mountain lake of Panch Pokhari with its beautiful waters reflecting the snowcapped peaks. We will spend the night at a local lodge in Sibuche where we will have a magnificent view of Mera Peak. Trekking time is 7 hours.
DAY 9 – Trek to Paiya (elev. 2767 m) via Narkung La/Chaduk La (elev. 3161 m) and Kari La (3059 m): We climb over two mountain passes at over 3000 meters today. Most of the time, you are walking through forests as there are very few villages here and all of them are quite small. The passes are steep as you go downhill past Mani walls. If the weather is good, there are great views of Mt. Cho Oyo , the 6th highest mountain in the world at 8,201 meters. There will also be great views of the Dudh Koshi Valley. We will trek a total of 7 hours today to reach the village of Paiya where we will spend the night in a local tea house.
DAY 10 – Trek to Lukla (elev. 2840 m): It is a short day of trekking as we make our way to Lukla in order to fly back to Kathmandu the next morning. It maybe a short day of trekking, but here are plenty of great views of the snowcapped peaks, including Khumbi Yul La (5761 m), Khongde ( 6168 m), Numbur (6959 m) and Kusum Khangaru (6367 m). We will relax and spend the night in Lukla at a good guest house.
DAY 11 – Fly to Kathmandu: We return to Kathmandu by an early morning flight, where we will be taken by private vehicle to our hotel. Here you can rest, or explore the Kathmandu Valley.
DAY 12 – Free Day: Today is a buffer day in case we can't fly the day before. If all goes according to our plans, then it is a free day to do whatever you would like to do. There is plenty to see and do in the Kathmandu Valley. Your representative at Swiss Nepal Family Trekking & Expedition can help to arrange day trips around the Valley. In the evening, there will be a departure dinner with
DAY 13 – Final Departure: All good things must come to an end, and your trip to Nepal is no exception. Before leaving, why not talk to your representative at Swiss Nepal Family Trekking & Expedition about returning to Nepal for your next holiday. The vast majority of people make a return trip to Nepal because they are impressed by not only the beauty, but also the local people. Swiss Nepal Family Trekking & Expedition offers trips into neighboring Tibet, Bhutan and India. Be sure to discuss your interests and plans with them today.
While traveling with Swiss Nepal Family Trekking & Expedition, your all-around safety and satisfaction is of our paramount concern. Please not that the Trip Leader has the authority to cancel or amend any part of this itinerary if it is considered necessary due to any safety concern. We leave no stones unturned to keep the itinerary mentioned above, but as this adventure includes traveling to remote areas of the Himalayas, we can't guarantee that we will not be forced to make last minute changes in our plans. Factors enter into these decisions include extreme weather conditions, unexpected natural disaster, health concerns of any of our group members, etc., can all contribute to the necessity of make unexpected changes. Your SNFT trip leader will try to insure that the trip runs as planned, but we kindly request that you please be accommodating if such changes do occur.
Please note that the Kathmandu-Tumlingtar-Lukla-Kathmandu flight often gets delayed by a few hours or even cancelled due to critical weather conditions. The Lukla airport is notorious for fog which we have no control over. Swiss Nepal Family Trekking will do everything it can to avoid such a situations. Mr. Kishan Gurung, the managing director of Swiss Nepal Family Trekking & Expedition has developed a strong relationship with the manager of the Lukla airport as well as with local helicopter companies. Mr. Gurung will try to arrange alternative flights if necessary if flights are cancelled. We have a 99% success rate for arranging such flights for our valued clients in case of flight delays and cancellations. For the successful flight in rescue or cargo helicopters, the cost is around USD 200 to USD 250 per person additional cost. If we must charter a helicopter, then the cost is around USD 3500 for up to five people. It is advisable to always be able to stay an extra day should weather conditions require. Normally, we can usually fly out the same day, but it is a good idea to be prepared.
If everything runs smoothly and you still have a few of your buffer days left, you can arrange alternative activities to participate in with Swiss Nepal Family Trekking & Expedition upon your request. There are plenty of things to see and do in the Kathmandu Valley, including seven UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
In case of flight delays or cancellations at the start of the trip, you can also choose an alternative trip, which includes trekking in the Annapurna Region, Manaslu, Langtang, Mustang or any other region in Nepal. Swiss Nepal Family Trekking & Expedition can offer you some really wonderful trekking opportunities in a variety of great locations. You can also choose to spend the time in Kathmandu exploring the Valley and all it has to offer. There is no need to be stuck in a hotel room; we can provide some great experiences as you wait for the weather to clear so you can fly to Lukla.
It is recommended that you set aside two to three days as "buffer days" at the end of your trip before having to depart Nepal when trekking in the Everest region. This is just good planning and will make for a much more pleasant trip. We apologize in advance for any difficulty the weather may contribute to. It is just part of being at the roof of the world.
THE TREKKING GROUP:
For this trip, there will be a Trek Leader and Sherpa Porters for carrying luggage (2 trekkers = 1 porter). This arrangement ensures that if anyone in the group is sick, the trip can still go ahead as planned. However, Swiss Nepal Family Trekking can run this trek for the group of any size. Generally, the maximum number of trekkers that the company has found optimum is 12.
All accommodations for the Salpa High Pass (Lukla to Tumlingtar) Lodge Trek are on twin-sharing basis with inclusive costs and are chosen based on standard hygiene and standard of food, services, locations, etc. There will be two styles of accommodations during this trek. We will spend Four nights at a Three-Star Hotel in Kathmandu. During the trek, we will spend Eight nights at standard tea houses or lodges with unheated rooms with wooden beds and foam mattresses. We can provide you with attached bath in some major towns; however, tea houses and lodges in some places have only shared washing and toilet facilities. We share a room with someone else of the same sex of our group if you are a solo traveler. If you prefer a single room, you may indicate your preferences and obtain a single room for an additional fee. Please understand that single rooms are not always possible at tea houses and mountain lodges. We will do our best to try and make the appropriate arrangements.
During this trek, you can enjoy the typical Nepali food along with different ethnic cuisines as well as all types of international cuisine (Tibetan, Continental, Italian, Indian, etc.) with items from pizza to chips to apple pie. You can even enjoy hot chocolates, a variety of breads, drinks and snacks. Breakfast of a day will be served from the tea house or lodge where we spend the night. Lunch will be served on the way to our destination with dinner served where we are spending the night. During your stay in Kathmandu, a farewell dinner along with breakfasts will be served.