Mt. Makalu Expedition - 56 Days

Mt. Makalu Expedition

Mt. Makalu (8463m) is the fifth highest mountain Peak on the Earth. Situated in the heart of Everest region, Mt. Makalu is just 14 miles east of Mt. Everest. Deep isolated valleys of Arun and Barun river surrounds the Makalu Himal.

The trail to the mountain follows the pristine forests and alpine meadows. Makalu-Barun area contains a wide range of rich and diverse flora and fauna. You will have an opportunity to explore the unique culture and traditions of Rai, Sherpa, and Bhotia ethnic community.

The economically backward community is rich in cultural heritage and traditions. The unique natural and cultural treasures get preserved by these communities. They try to keep their lives away from the materialistic world. The area is remote and little known outside of the trekking community.

Avid trekkers have always rated the trail to be one of the finest in the world. Lionel Terray and Jean Couzy ascended the peak on May 15, 1955. They belonged to a french expedition team. Mt. Makalu was first measured and photographed by the British Everest survey in 1921 from the Tibetan side.

The west face of the mountain lying on the Nepal side is quite dangerous. There were five failed attempts before the successful expedition of Mt. Makalu. The West Face of Mt. Makalu was first successfully ascended in 1997. Sergey Efimov led Russian expedition team climbed the Makalu via West Face on May 21, 1997.

The majestic Makalu is a four-sided pyramid situated in the Mahalangur region. Makalu is widely regarded as one of the most challenging mountains to climb in the world. Some climbers suggest it is even more complicated than the mighty Everest. A mountaineer has to tackle several steep technical sections and with knife-edged ridges.

The tour starts after a scenic flight from Kathmandu to Tumlingtar. The trekking journey starts from Tumlingtar. We pass through many charming little villages staying in local lodges and camps. The trail also moves along the terraced farmed hills and the rhododendron trees.

After a trek of almost a week, we arrive at the spectacular Makalu Base Camp. Sherpa crew members help us immensely by setting up our tents and cooking nutritious meals. They also check on our health conditions and train and acclimatize us for the climb ahead. We train rigorously and prepare ourselves for the strenuous climb.

After almost two weeks of training and preparation, we start our ascent to the summit. We overcome several technical sections to arrive at the summit. The spectacular view of the snow-capped mountains and the beautiful environment will amaze us. The final ascent to the summit pyramid has a tough rock climbing sections. Prior experience of a mountain and rock climbing with an excellent physical condition is a must.

After some time at the summit, we descend to the Base Camps. We clean up the Base Camp and retrace our steps back through the charming villages of Mumubuk, Tashi gaon, Num, Khandbari and finally arrive at the town of Tumlingtar. We end our journey on a scenic flight from Tumlingtar.

Are you an avid mountaineer? Do you love challenges? If yes, then the Mt. Makalu expedition is ideal for you. We are offering this spectacular mountaineering package at an affordable cost. So what are you waiting for? Book your trip now!

Highlights of The Trip

  • Ascending the 5th highest mountain in the world, Mt Makalu(8463m)
  • Spectacular view of Kanchenjunga to the east and Mt Shishapangma to the west along with other snow-capped mountains in the distance
  • Exploring the Makalu Barun National Park
  • Scenic mountain flight of Tumlingtar-Kathmandu-Tumlingtar
  • Opportunity to train with the veteran climbers
  • Incredible hospitality of the Nepalese people
  • Exploring the rich cultural heritage of the Gurung, Rai, sherpa and Bhotia community

Best Time for Mt. Makalu Expedition

The weather conditions at the Himalayas is quite extreme and unpredictable. The unpredictable weather and the changing temperature play an essential part in determining the best time for the Mt. Makalu expedition.

Spring

The ideal time for climbing Mt. Makalu is the spring season. The month of April-May is when most of the climbers attempt the mountain. The temperature is quite moderate around time.

The spring season also sees the abundance of wildflowers, especially the rhododendron flower. The pleasant weather condition and clear blue skies make for a great trip.

Autumn

The small window between September-November is also available for Mt. Makalu expedition. The autumn season arrives after the monsoon season. Thus, there are no risks of rainfall and snowfall during the season.

You can climb the mountain in perfect conditions. The unobstructed view of the mountains over the blue sky adds to the beauty.

The Difficulty Level of Mt. Makalu Expedition

Makalu is one of the most technically challenging mountains in the world. Several technical sections will test you to the core. The freezing temperature, dipping oxygen levels, bulky clothes, and gears are some of the factors that make the climb of Mt. Makalu quite tough.

The climber needs to use the axe, fixed ropes, crampons, and many other mountaineering gears. You must practice your skills in other peaks before attempting Mount Makalu. You must keep in mind the various factors like altitude sickness, sleep deprivation, frostbite that increase the risk of the expedition.

The climb to the summit gets scheduled early to make it to the top before noon as to avoid the strong afternoon winds that pose a threat. Exhaustion is another crucial factor that increases the risk of collapse during descent.

The excellent Sherpa crew will protect you at all times. Acclimatize regularly and always put your safety first. Also, listen to the experts and the team leader. If you follow these rules diligently, you will be able to ascend the mountain successfully.

Day 01 :Arrival in Kathmandu (1350m).

Day 02-03 :Sightseeing, trip preparation briefing.

Day 04 :Fly from Kathmandu to Tumlingtar(920m) and then trek to Manebhanjyang(1100m).

Day 05 :Manebhanjyang to Kuwapani (1420m).

Day 06 :Kuwapani to Num (1800m) .

Day 07 :Num to Sheduwa (1510m).

Day 08 :Sheduwa to Tashigaon (2070m).

Day 09 :Tashigaon to Khongma (3760m).

Day 10 :Khongma to Sanopokhari (1710m).

Day 11 :Sanopokhari to Mumbuk (3550m).

Day 12 :Mumbuk to Yangle Kharka (3600m).

Day 13 :Yangle Kharka to Hillary Base Camp (4800m).

Day 14 :Hillary Base Camp to Makalu Base Camp (4870m)

Day 15-46 :Climbing Period (summit Makalu 8463m).

Day 47 :Cleaning up Base Camp and ready to return.

Day 48 :Base Camp to Yak Kharka (3600m).

Day 49 :Yak Kharka to Mumbuk (3550m).

Day 50 :Mumbuk to Tashi Gaon (3420m).

Day 51 :Tashi Gaon to Num (1800m).

Day 52 :Num to Chichira(1615m).

Day 53 :Chichira to Tumlingtar via Khandbari (920m).

Day 54 :Fly from Tumlingtar to Kathmandu.

Day 55 :Rest day.

Day 56 :Final departure.

Day 01: Arrival in Kathmandu (1350m)

After your arrival in Kathmandu, a representative will pick you up from the airport and take you to the hotel. They will also help you to check-in at the hotel and brief you about the trip in detail. You could also stroll around Kathmandu in the evening.

Day 02-03: Sightseeing of Kathmandu Valley And Trip Preparation

After an early breakfast, you will travel to the various sightseeing points in the Kathmandu valley. There are seven world heritage sites listed by UNESCO in Kathmandu. The Basantapur Durbar square, Patan durbar square, and Bhaktapur durbar square are the three most important landmarks of the city.

The durbar squares provide the opportunity to learn about the medieval culture and heritage of the valley. Besides these, there are other religious sites like the Pashupatinath, Swayambhunath, and Boudhanath. Thousands of pilgrims visit these sacred places all over the year.

We can observe a stunning sunset over the Kathmandu valley from the hilltop of Swayambhunath. In the evening, we return to the hotel and stay overnight. On the next day, we will prepare for the tour. We complete all the necessary paperwork and formalities required.

We will then proceed to the Ministry of Tourism for a formal meeting with the government officials. There we will learn about the rules and regulations. We comply with all the laws and instructions compiled upon us and end the day. We return to the hotel and stay overnight.

Day 04: Fly from Kathmandu to Tumlingtar(920m) and then Trek to Manebhanjyang(1100m)

After an early breakfast, we will fly from Kathmandu to Tumlingtar. The early morning flight lands on a grassy airstrip. After landing we drive for about two hours to reach the village of Manebhanjyang.

The Rai and Gurung people occupy the settlements at Manebhanjyang. We register at the national park check office and resume our trek to Manebhanjyang. After arriving at the Manebhanjyang village, we spend the night at a local lodge.

Flight duration: 45 minutes

Trek duration: 4-5 hours

Day 05: Trek from Manebhanjyang to Kuwapani (1420m)

After breakfast, we start our trek for the day. We pass through the villages and settlement influenced by Tibetan heritage and culture. The trek continues along a small ridge.

We then climb a minor pass at Bhotebas at 1740m. From the past, we have a spectacular view of the Makalu Himal. We head towards a dense forest to arrive at the village of Kuwapani.

Trek duration: 5-6 hours

Day 06: Trek from Kuwapani to Num (1800m)

From Kuwapani we will follow the trail that heads towards the crossing of another minor pass- Daju la pass at 2100 meters. The view of the entire region from the top of the past is breathtaking.

We descend steeply towards a forest from the past to arrive at the village of Num. We will camp at the campsite site of the village. We spend the night at the tented camp.

Trek duration: 5-6 hours

Day 07: Trek from Num to Sheduwa (1510m)

After an early breakfast, we leave our camp at nun village and descend to the Arun Khola bridge. We cross the suspension bridge and begin a steep uphill climb to the dense forest area until we arrive at the village of Seduwa.

Seduwa is a significant trading village and has a national park check post office. After completing some formalities, we make our way to the campsite and set our camps for the day.

Trek duration: 5-6 hours

Day 08: Trek from Seduwa to Tashigaon (2070m)

After an early breakfast, we follow the easy trail passing through the Murmidanda. Our path moves uphill towards Narbugaon. We resume our trek passing through dense forests and crop fields towards Tashigaon.

Tashigaon is the last settlement on the trail as the trail moves along with remote areas. All the necessary items should get purchases here if needed. We set up our camps on Tashigaon.

Trek duration: 5-6 hours

Day 09: Trek from Tashigaon to Kongma (3760m)

We make our way as we follow the uphill trail that moves steeply through the dense forest. The trek resumes as we climb steeply towards Unshisha.

There is a campsite, and tea houses opened only during the peak season. We continue our trek until we arrive at a good camping site. We stay overnight at a campsite in Kongma.

Trek duration: 6-7 hours

Day 10: Trek from Kongma to Sanopokhari (1710m)

We continue our trek from Kongma passing through the stunning Kongma la pass. The top of the pass presents us awe-inspiring views of Makalu, Barun Tse, Chamlang, Kanchenjunga, Jannu and other snow-capped mountains.

We continue our trek and arrive at the Tutu La Pass. From there, we descend downhill to the lake of Sano Pokhari. We find a good campsite near the lake. We spend our night in a tented camp overlooking the beautiful night sky.

Trek duration: 4-5 hours

Day 11: Trek from Sanopokhari to Mumbuk (3550m)

After an early breakfast, we start our trek towards the Keke la pass. The view of the Chamlang range from the top of the pass is fantastic. We take a break and refresh ourselves.

From the pass, we take a steep and rocky descent. After a trek of almost 4-5 hours, we arrived at the village of Mumbuk. We spend the night at a camp in Mumbuk.

Trek duration: 4-5 hours

Day 12: Trek from Mumbuk to Yangle Kharka (3600m)

We have our breakfast early and then start our trek for the day. The trail first descends downhill to the banks of Barun Nadi. From the riverbed of the Barun Nadi, we climb back up the steep hillside.

We can see the landslide affected area along the hills. You should be extra careful while passing through these areas. After trekking along the loose trails over the Barun Nadi for almost 4-5 hours, we arrive at the grassy fields of Yangle Kharka.

Trek duration: 5-6 hours

Day 13: Trek from Yangle Kharka to Hillary Base Camp (4800m)

We start our trek passing through the dense rhododendron, fir, and pine forests towards Langmale Kharka. From there we trek over the ancient lateral moraine through Barum Nadi.

The large glacial lake on the left fills the valley. From here onward the trail eases along towards the Hillary Base Camp. After a trek of almost 6-7 hours, we arrive at the Hillary Base Camp. We spend the night at a tented camp.

Trek duration: 5-6 hours

Day 14: Trek from Hillary Base Camp to Makalu Base Camp (4870m)

We leave early after breakfast, towards Makalu Base Camp. The trail turns right and then climbs up along the moraines. After reaching the top, we descend gradually to the stone huts of Makalu Base Camp after crossing a small bridge.

Makalu Base Camp is going to be our home for the next 30 days. We can observe the snow-capped mountains in all its glory. The Sherpa crew will help us set up the camps at different levels. We unpack our stuff and settle ourselves in Makalu Base Camp.

Trek duration: 5-6 hours

Day 15-46: Climbing Period, summit Mt. Makalu (8463m)

We spend more than two weeks acclimatizing and training for climbing the majestic Makalu mountain. The excellent sherpa crew will help us in setting the camps at different camps. We also check the various climbing gears and equipment we carried along the trek.

We follow the guidance and instructions of the team leader. We also practice several technical sections on the climb. The mount Makalu is the 5th highest mountain in the world. So climbing the mountain is a serious commitment.

The first camp or camp I get set on a balanced ground at the top of the glacier. You will then cross the rugged trail for almost 4 hours to reach the camp II. There might be occasional snowfalls in the area that makes the tour challenging.

The way from camp II to camp III is relatively easy and less challenging. There is a large traverse, and zig-zag slope from the camp III to camp IV. Veteran climbers serve as the expedition leaders and train us with their expertise. Several sections also need rope fixing.

After spending some time clicking pictures and making memories, we return to the Base Camp. You will have to endure the highest degree of struggle and keep the passion alive. The excellent sherpa crew help us in setting camps and preparing nutritious meals for the stay.

From the top of the peak, we can see that beautiful snow-capped landscapes and mountains including Mount Everest, Lhotse, Nuptse, Cho Oyo, Barun Tse, Manaslu among others.

Day 47: Cleaning up Base Camp and prepare to return

We stay another day at the Base Camp and clean up our waste products. We exercise a carbon-neutral and eco-friendly tour. Hence, all the waste material will get carried back with us until we find a proper waste disposal management area.

We also pack up our equipment and gears used in climbing. After a day of packing and cleaning. We will observe a prayer to the mountain gods for a successful ascent of Mt Makalu according to the sherpa tradition.

Day 48: Trek from Makalu Base Camp to Yak Kharka (3600m)

We leave Makalu Base Camp early morning and retrace our steps back to the same route. The trail becomes relatively easy towards the yak Kharka. After finding an excellent place to camp in the Yak Kharka, we stay overnight.

Trek duration: 4-5 hours

Day 49: Trek from Yak Kharka to Mumbuk (3550m)

From Yak Kharka, we start our journey to Mumbuk early in the morning. The trail downhill is easy. After a trek of almost 6-7 hours, we arrive at the village of Mumbuk.

We set up our tents overnight at Mumbuk. A special ceremony gets organized by the locals. We spend the night singing and dancing in the folk song along with the locals.

Trek duration: 4-5 hours

Day 50: Trek from Mumbuk to Tashi Gaon (3420m)

After a beautiful night enjoying and participating in the local dance, we pack our gear and leave the village of Mumbuk. We continue our trek journey on the same trail that leads us to the village of Tashi Gaon. We stay overnight at Tashigaon in a tented camp.

Trek duration: 6-7 hours

Day 51: Trek from Tashi Gaon to Num (1800m)

After breakfast, we leave Tashigaon as the trail moves along the alpine forests in the hills. The trail then passes through the cultivated fields of Narbugaom.

From Narbugaon, we descent steeply before arriving at an easy path that leads us to the trading village of Seduwa. We take a break at Seduwa and have lunch. From Seduwa, we cross the Arun Nadi and climb gradually to arrive at the town of Num. We stay overnight at a camp in Num.

Trek duration: 5-6 hours

Day 52: Trek from Num to Chichira(1615m)

We leave the village of Num and start our trek towards the steep section of the dense forest. There we make our way through a minor pass of Daju la at 2100m. Then we trek to the village of Kuwapani.

There we get welcomed by the excellent views of Mt Makalu. We resume our trek to the Chichira. We stay at a lodge in the village of Chichira overnight.

Trek duration: 5-6 hours

Day 53: Trek from Chichira to Tumlingtar via Khandbari (920m)

After breakfast, we start our trek by trekking through the charming villages of Mane Bhanjyang to finally arrive at the Khandbari. We take a break while at Khandbari and have lunch.

Then, we trek for the final time from Khandbari to Tumlingtar. The trek takes about 5-6 hours of trekking. We spend the night at a lodge in Tumlingtar.

Trek duration: 5-6 hours

Day 54: Fly from Tumlingtar to Kathmandu

After an early breakfast, we take a beautiful flight from Tumlingtar to Kathmandu. The trip takes about 45 minutes, and after landing in Kathmandu, you will get transferred to the hotel. You can stroll around the city in the evening. You will stay overnight at the hotel.

Flight duration: 45 minutes

Day 55: Rest day

We have an extra day on your hand. You could go sightseeing tour of the city. It was not possible to visit all the monuments in the town earlier, so this is your opportunity. You could also go souvenir shopping on the streets of Thamel.

There are plenty of handicrafts and local products that would be perfect for taking back as memorabilia. The Thamel area is famous for its exuberant nightlife. You can relax in the never-ending nightclubs, bars, pubs, and cafes in Thamel. You will stay overnight at the hotel.

Day 56: Final departure

After an incredible two months at the beautiful Himalayan nation, your time at the tiny Himalayan nation comes to an end. A representative will pick you up from the hotel and transfer you to the hotel. You can board a flight to your desired destination.

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Trip Facts

  • 56 Day(s)
  • Strenuous