These treks are suitable for any walker looking for something a little more challenging and energetic. They are a combination of some longer and shorter walks and hill-walking experience is desirable. The duration is usually from 10 to 15 days. Following the up and down terrain of Nepal and walking to higher elevations contrasts these treks to those in the easy classification. However, you will be rewarded for your efforts with spectacular close-up views of glaciers and of the high Himalayas. Although the terrain is not difficult, some vigorous hiking experience is useful. There may be up to 6 hours a day on the trail and the elevation rises and falls from 800m/ 2624ft to 4000m/13210ft above sea level.
The alluring Himlung Himal, situated in Nepal’s Manaslu region, has emerged as a coveted destination for mountaineers yearning to conquer a Himalayan pinnacle. Towering at an impressive altitude of 7,126 meters (23,380 feet), this majestic mountain demands exceptional technical climbing skills and experience to reach its summit.
The Himlung Expedition presents an excellent choice for climbers, characterized by a gradual ascent that necessitates minimal technical expertise. Reaching the summit at 7,126 meters unveils breathtaking panoramas of the surrounding landscape. With a reasonable timeframe, this climb poses no significant challenges, making it an ideal high-altitude mountain expedition for those with some mountaineering experience and a burning desire to explore Nepal.
Nestled in the Nar and Phu region, Himlung Himal was unveiled to tourists in 2001, and its magnificence has been discovered by only a fortunate few expeditions thus far. Embarking on this extraordinary journey unveils awe-inspiring scenery, pristine and remote lands, and captivating cultures. Traverse through evergreen forests, cascading waterfalls, and deep rocky gorges, all encircled by majestic snow-capped mountains and gleaming glaciers. The inhabitants of this remote terrain, extending to the border of Tibet, proudly preserve traditional Tibetan culture and spiritual beliefs.
The Himlung Himal Expedition commences west of Kathmandu, specifically in Beshishar at an elevation of 840m. Following the esteemed Annapurna Circuit Trekking route up the Marshyangdi River valley, we venture into the enchanting Phu Valley of the secluded Gandaki region. Within this valley lie the ancient Tibetan settlements of Naar and Phu, nestled just a stone’s throw away from the towering Himlung Himal. Dedicate a day to acclimatization and immerse yourself in the picturesque Buddhist settlement, embracing the serenity it offers. Our Base Camp, positioned at a lofty altitude of 4,900 meters, rests on a verdant meadow overlooking the village of Phu.
Before setting our sights on conquering the Mount Himlung summit, we established three additional camps: Camp I, Camp II, and Camp III, situated at 5,450m, 6,000m, and 6,350m respectively. While our primary objective remains to reach the summit, our diligent Sherpas prioritize your comfort and safety. Thus, the itinerary remains flexible, allowing adjustments based on climbers’ health conditions and prevailing weather conditions on the mountain. Leading you through the crucial process of acclimatization, our team of professional and experienced Local Sherpa Guides expertly navigate paced ascents and descents, preparing your body physiologically for the challenges of high altitude.
Our cozy “French base camp,” located in a sheltered area with ample water sources nearby, ensures comfort while shielding against avalanches. However, the journey to set up camp presents a slight challenge, as it entails maneuvering through the Pangir Glacier amidst colossal boulders, followed by an exposed ascent up the moraine on the right bank, susceptible to rockfalls.
The transition from Camp 1 to Camp 2 is a relatively straightforward and swift endeavor, taking approximately 2 to 3 hours along moderately undulating terrain, punctuated by moraines and small valleys. Snow conditions may influence progress, but there are no avalanche-prone slopes along the ascent. To reach Camp 2, you must navigate a perched scree slope, leading directly to the side of the glacier. Traversing the glacier side, with its crevasses and challenging terrain of rocks and snow, eventually leads to flatter glacier terrain, requiring careful steps and a few twists and turns. This section, subject to seasonal variations and snow conditions, presents the most thrilling segment of the ascent. Continuing our glacier journey, we skillfully maneuver around crevasses until we reach the “Glacier Camp,” a well-suited site for establishing our camp. The setting offers ample space to accommodate groups of varying sizes and poses minimal, if any, avalanche risk (subject to confirmation based on conditions). Ropes interlinked, we ascend the glacier, minimizing the risk of falling into crevasses.
The path from Camp 2 to Camp 3 presents minimal challenges, with an ascent up icy escarpments leading to the final ridge (featuring a few undulations along the way). This leg should take approximately 2-3 hours from Camp 2. Consequently, the risk of avalanches from above slopes is minimal or nonexistent (subject to verification under extraordinary snow conditions).
During the Himlung Expedition, additional high camps could not be added to shorten the climb. The initial stage involves reaching the pass via slightly steep (30°) and exposed snowy slopes. In certain cases, lead guides may install fixed ropes. Beyond this point, the slopes become gentler, interspersed with flat sections.
Once the crevasse opens, typically posing no hindrance, the ridge-side slope steepens, representing the most challenging part of the entire ascent. Spanning 400 meters at 30/35 degrees, this section carries a higher risk of falling. Consequently, fixed ropes are employed. The route then leads to a less steep ridge, transitioning to a flatter section before the final short slope. Descending to either Camp 2 or Camp 1, we prepare for the return journey to base camp the following day. Packing our gear, we celebrate our summit triumph, relish the gratification of our accomplishments, and prepare for the concluding leg toward Kathmandu.
The itinerary for the Himlung Expedition spans 28 days from the day of arrival. Nepal Wilderness Trekking assumes responsibility for all aspects of the Himlung Expedition, including permits, fees, and trail accommodations. Our unwavering priority remains your safety and satisfaction. As a seasoned trekking and climbing company with over 20 years of experience, we distinguish between a good and exceptional experience. We take immense pride in our reputable standing.
The best time to climb Himlung is during the spring (April-May) and fall (October-November) seasons. During these seasons, the weather is stable, and the skies are clear, making it easier to navigate the mountain. The temperatures are also milder during these seasons, which makes it more comfortable for climbers to trek and climb.
The spring season is considered the best time to climb Himlung because it is the beginning of the climbing season in Nepal, and the mountain is less crowded. The weather is also stable, and the skies are usually clear. During this season, the temperatures are mild, and the mountain is covered with snow, making it easier to navigate.
The fall season is also a great time to climb Himlung because the monsoon season has ended, and the skies are clear. The temperatures are mild, and the mountain is usually dry, making it easier to climb. The fall season is also a popular time to climb in Nepal, so there may be more climbers on the mountain during this time.
It is important to note that the summer monsoon season (June-September) and winter (December-February) are not suitable for climbing Himlung due to heavy snow and unstable conditions. The monsoon season brings heavy rain and snow to the region, which can make the trek to the mountain difficult. Winter brings extreme cold and snow, making it challenging to climb the mountain.
Overall, a Himlung expedition can be a challenging and rewarding experience for experienced mountaineers seeking to climb a lesser-known Himalayan peak. However, it is important to be well-prepared and to approach the climb with caution and respect for the mountain and the environment.