13 Days Upper Mustang TrekBack
Trip Facts Program Code: PTT-NEPAL Duration: 13 days Program Type: Private Maximum Altitude: 3780m Minimum Pax: 2 Mode of Travel: Land/Flight Start Trip: Pokhara End Trip: Pokhara Program Grading: Moderate Driving Hour: 1 hours Driving Distance: 1 KM Trek Distance: 1 KM Flying Hour: 1 hours

Overview

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In the north of Nepal- hidden behind the famous Himalayan peaks Annapurna and Dhaulagiri - there is the small kingdom of Mustang. For centuries it was an important transfer spot for the trade between Tibet and India, until in the 1950`s this came to an end due to the political conditions. Mustang became a restricted area, and only since 1992 foreigners are allowed to enter the region again. This was one of the reasons why Mustang kept its origin. The Nepalese government tries to leave the area more or less as it is, untouched by mass tourism. In order to be able to keep the number of visitors small , every foreigner has to have a special permit before entering the kingdom. 

In spite of the fact that Mustang is politically a district of Nepal, it is because of its geographical position in the Trans Himalayan as well as its cultural background of its inhabitants, who practice Tibetan Buddhism, much more related to Tibet. One finds hardly an area in Asia with such varieties as the highlands of Mustang: many different forms and structures due to erosion alternate with colorful rock formations along the deepest valley on earth, bizarre minerals and breathtaking gorges accompany us along the trail. In addition we find fairy-tail hamlets with its characteristic Tschorten (shrines) and reddish painted monasteries, fortresses in all states of decay, shining green or yellow crop fields like oasis, and as one highlight Lo Manthang, the capital of Mustang - more than 600 years old and protected by a medieval city wall. All these impressions are topped with the huge white glacier peaks of the Himalayas.

Pokhara is a resort city of remarkable beauty. The serenity of Phewa Lake and the magnificent summit of Machhapuchhre rising behind it create an ambiance of peace and magic. Pokhara is part of a once vibrant caravan route extending between India and Tibet. This is the land of the Magars and Gurungs who have earned worldwide fame as Gurkha soldiers. Brahmins, Chhetris and Thakalis are other major communities here.

Jomsom  (North of Pokhara) Nepal's spectacular diversity appears at its finest. The deep valleys and high mountains encircling the giant Annapurna Himal embrace a wide range of peoples and terrain, from subtropical jungle to a high, dry landscape resembling the Tibetan Plateau. Annapurna Nepal region is most popular trekking region in Nepal with plenty of trekking places, attracting over 75% of all trekkers (more than 30.000 annually). It's also among the tamest areas, with excellent lodges lining the main routes.

Lo-Manthang's culture is deep rooted in the religious sentiments of its people. The township abound with many chhortens, mani-walls and monasteries. Prayer flags flutter above all the houses-conveying mantras to all corners of the world. The Lobas are exclusively Buddhists and conform to the Sakya-pa sect of Tibetan Buddhism. Bon prevailed before Buddhism, which was later replaced by Ningma Pa Sect (Dhakar-Kayu subsect) and subsequently by Sakya Pa Sect (Sakyapa, Ngorpa subsects) of Buddhism.
Of the three Gompas in Lo-Manthang, the Jhampa Gompa is the oldest. It was built in 1387 AD during the reign of the famous king Anguin Sangbo and is believed to be a replica of Ghangtse Jhampa Gompa of Tibet , which still exists in Ghangtse.

Muktinath:: The temple and the religious shrines of Muktinath are about 90m in elevation above Ranipauwa. There are no hotels and the temple committee does not allow camping. Muktinath is an important pilgrimage place for both Hindus and Buddhists. The holy shrines at Muktinath are in a grove of trees and include a Buddhist gompa and the pagode-style temple of Vishnu Mandir, containing an image of Vishnu. Around the temple is a wall from which 108 waterspouts, cast in the shape of cows' heads, pour forth sacred water. Even more sacred is the water that issues from a rock inside the ancient Tibetan-style Jwala Mai temple, a short distance below the pagoda. Inside this gompa, behind a tattered curtain, are small natural gas jets that produce a perpetual holy flame alongside a spring that is the source of the sacred water. This auspicious combination of earth, fire and water is responsible for the religious importance of Muktinath. It is often possible to see Tibetan women with elaborate turquoise-embedded headdresses, engaged in devotions at these shrines. 


Short Itinerary

Day 1.    Pokhara-Jomsom(2700m) Flight/ Trek To Kagbeni (2800)(LD)
Breakfast then flight to Jomsom in the early morning with trekking guide. The flight is 20 minutes only and offers great view of Annapurna and Dhaulagiri mountains .Meet your trekking porter  in Jomsom and start trekking for few hours before we stop at Kagbeni(2800m) . Kagbeni on Nepal Tibet trade route is a traditional town with medieval look and interesting alleys. Your upper Mustang trekking starts from here and your trekking permit days are counted once you enter the check point here in  Kagbeni .Overnight in lodge.
Day 2.    Kagbeni to Chaile, 3030m. (BLD)
Breakfast and walk slightly up along the Kali Gandaki river side while visiting two beautiful villages Tangbe and Chhuksang. Crossing of the Kali Gandaki River to reach Chaile. * 7 hours walking. Overnight in lodge.
Day 3.    Chaile to Geling, 3440m. (BLD)
The rocky trail mounts up until Dajori La; 3550m then descends slightly until Samar, 3290m. Walking down and up again to Bhena and Yamda by ascending a pass of 3800m. Continuity up to the highest pass of the day, 3970m. Superb view of the Annapurna and the Nilgiri Himal. Descent down to Shyangboche, 3650m, a tiny village. Ascent slightly up to a pass of 3700m. Fascinating view of Geling and its red monastery. Descent down to Geling, green oasis. * 8 hours walking. Overnight in lodge.
Day 4.    Geling to Dhakmar, 3800m. (BLD)Slight ascents of Nyi La pass, 3975 m. Descent to Ghami, 3545m. Beautiful village of white houses in a deep gorge. The ruins of the old Ghami, abandoned due to the lack of water, camouflage themselves with the cliffs. Houses with decorated windows of red, green and black colour. Visit of Monastery.  Ascent to a pass of 3175m facing Ghami and viewing the longest mani wall of Nepal. The trail follows the flank of the mountain, downhill slope, until Dhakmar, to the red cliffs. Cave habitats. * 5 hours walking. Overnight in lodge.

Day 5.    Day 05:  Dhakmar to Lo Manthang, 3730m(BLD)
The trail is a corridor between the cliffs on an abrupt ascent. 45 minutes of ascending up to the pass of 3985m. Eye catching view of the Annapurna and the Mustang. Then the trail follows on the hillside until Lo Gekar (which means pure virtue of Lo) Visit of Ghar Gumba (House temple). Lunch. Then the trail ascends gradually until Chogo La, 4325m. Continuations of walking on the ridge then descend to Lomanthang, fortified city having an ancient king’s palace and the important monasteries. Overnight in lodge.
Day 6.    Explore Lo Manthang (BLD)
Rest and visit of the monasteries and Buddhist school of the Chhyodi Gompa. Excursion to the summer palace of Garphu. Overnight in lodge.
Day 7.    Explore Lo Manthang (BLD)
Rest and visit of the monasteries and Buddhist school of the Chhyodi Gompa. Excursion to the summer palace of Garphu. Overnight in lodge.
Day 8.    Lo Mantang to Charang, 3490m. (BLD)
Ascent the pass of 3910 m. Nice view of the capital of Mustang, Lo Manthang. The trail goes downhill after the pass. Easy walk in deserted landscape. Amazing scenery. The village appears slowly, dominated by a five storied fortress and a large monastery. Visit of the fortress, gaping windows. A room hides a book with the history of the kingdom in golden letters. The carvings on the cover of the book are of an extreme beauty. The last storey contains ancient arms and armors. Visit of the monastery. Ask to see the ancient monastery, at the end of the courtyard, astonishing paintings abandoned. * 4 hours walking. Overnight in lodge.
Day 9.    Charang to Syangboche, 3800m. (BLD)
Slight Uphill until Choya La, 3870m. Beautiful landscape. Visit of the longest and most spectacular Maniwall of Nepal while descending to Ghami. Then again uphill to Ghami La and Nya La, 3590m. Downhill to Tamagaun. Slight ascend to Syanbochen La, 3850m. Descend to Syangboche.  * 7 hours walking. Overnight in lodge.
Day 10.    Syangboche to Chuksang, 2965m. (BLD)
The trail ascends up to Yamdo La, 4010m, then it follows hillside. Crosses Yamda, Bhena, samara and Chaile to arrive at Chhuksang. * 7 hours walking. Overnight in lodge.
Day 11.    Chhuksang to Muktinath, 3700m.   (BLD)
Uphill until a pass of 3970m. Beautiful view of the white capped mountains and barren landscape of mustang. Then downhill to Muktinath. World famous pilgrimage of all the Hindus. * 5 hours walking. Overnight in lodge.
Day 12.    Muktinath to Jomsom, 2713m. (BLD)
The trail descends down to Elkebhatti by passing a beautiful village of Jharkot, then Khingar. The trail runs flatly down until Jomsom along the Kali Gandaki River. * 4 hours walking. Overnight in lodge.
Day 13.     Flight Jomsom – Pokhara/end.(B)

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