Crystal Mountain Treks Family
Jwalant Gurung | Team Leader
Jwalant is responsible for Marketing and Operations at Crystal Mountain Treks. Prior to leaving for the US in 2004 to pursue an MBA at the University of Washington, Seattle, Jwalant managed Crystal Mountain Treks for five years. He has led numerous trips to remote regions in Nepal, Sikkim and Tibet. A certified climbing guide and Wilderness First Responder, Jwalant prefers camping treks to remote regions in Nepal and Tibet. His favorites include the Manaslu Circuit and Upper Dolpo.
Jwalant is a founder-member of "3 summits for Nepal", a climbing charity raising money for Nepali children's education.URL: http://3summitsfornepal.blogspot.com/
Janita Gurung | Director - Customer relations and Raising the Bar Initiatives
Jenny at Anna Base Camp
Janita (friends and family call her Jenny) is responsible for customer relations and CMT’s giving program. With a background in conservation and natural resources management, Jenny has traveled fairly extensively in the Himalayas. She is passionate about mountain issues and works on related aspects through tourism, academic research, and work (both as a volunteer and as an environmental consultant). Jenny obtained her MS degree from the University of Washington, Seattle, and is currently pursuing a doctorate at Kathmandu University. Prior to joining CMT, Jenny worked at World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Nepal to implement their mountain programs mainly in the Kanchenjunga region of Nepal. She is an avid fan of the Kanchenjunga region and its people.
Binaya Rana | Senior cultural and spiritual guide
Binaya at Nam Tsho Lake in Tibet
Binaya Rana is CMT’s leading guide for city tours and special interest groups in Nepal and Tibet. As a certified Kathmandu Tour Guide, Binaya provides you with an insightful look into the past history and current issues of Kathmandu Valley. As a Buddhist scholar, practitioner, and teacher (Binaya taught Buddhism at the University of Connecticut), Binaya is also an excellent resource for spiritual and special interest groups to Nepal and Tibet. Binaya plans to pursue a doctorate in Buddhism in 2010.
Ram Hari Adhikari | Trek Officer
Ram Hari Ram Hari is CMT’s trek officer and airport representative. Ram Hari’s is the smiling face that you will usually see at the airport upon your arrival in Kathmandu. He makes sure your trek permits have been obtained and that your Tibet permits are in order. Ram Hari has been working at CMT since 1995.
Ram “non stop” Rai | Senior Guide
Ram Rai on the Annapurna Circuit Trek
Ram, is the premier trekking guide for Crystal Mountain Treks. Ram started out as a porter about 35 years ago, and slowly worked his way up the ladder to become a Sirdar (trekking guide and in-charge). He is, perhaps, one of the most experienced trekking guides in Nepal, having traversed well over the country, as well as in Tibet, Pakistan, and India. His experiences are a storehouse of many stories that you can discover while on a trek with him. Ram has also been guiding trips for the Sierra Club for the past 20 years. Most of our guides have directly worked and/or trained under Ram Rai.
Buddhi Rai | Senior Guide
Buddhi Rai at Gosaikunda
His cheerful and happy attitude makes him a popular guide among our trekking friends.Buddhi has traveled extensively in Nepal from east to west, as well as in Tibet and Pakistan. More recently, Buddhi has found himself trekking mostly in the Everest region. He probably has the record of accomplishing the most trips to Everest among CMT guides. Buddhi has been guiding for over 25 years. Prior to guiding, he was also an accomplished trekking cook, and his latent culinary skills may show while on a camping trek.
Buddhi attended the 5 day organized by Kathmandu Environmental Education Project (KEEP) and will be required to attend refresher courses every year.
Manju Rai | Senior Guide
Manju at Gokyo Ri
Manju trained under the tutelage of Peter Owens and has worked for Peter Owen’s Asian Treks since 1991. Starting out as a porter, Manju slowly worked up to become a cook and then a Sirdar. He is one of our best cooks - he is known for variety, a balanced meal, and the ability to concoct various American-esque dishes. Manju has guided all major treks in Nepal and has also trekked in India (Ladakh and Sikkim), and Tibet.
Manju attended the 5 day organized by Kathmandu Environmental Education Project (KEEP) and will be required to attend refresher courses every year.
Lila Subba | Senior Guide
Lila near Thorung Phedi
Lila joined Crystal Mountain Treks in 2008. His first trek was the challenging Annapurna Circuit camping trek with a side-trip to climb Chulu West (21,059 ft.). Coordinating a team of 5 climbers and over 15 crew is indeed a mighty task. He received kudos for his role as Sirdar. Lila will now be leading more trips for Crystal Mountain in the future.
Lila comes to Crystal Mountain Treks with over 15 years of guiding experience. He hails from the Kanchenjunga region and has guided in most regions of Nepal including Everest, Annapurna, Langtang and Kanchenjunga.
Lila attended the 5 day organized by Kathmandu Environmental Education Project (KEEP) and will be required to attend refresher courses every year.
Salam Singh Tamang | Senior Guide
Salam (right) with porter Nima
Salam trained under the tutelage of Peter Owens and worked for Peter Owen’s Asian Treks for over 20 years. Starting out as a porter, Salam slowly worked up to become a Sirdar. He has guided all the major treks in Nepal and some in India (Ladakh) and Pakistan.
Birkha Rai | Guide
Birkha on the Everest TrekBirkha trained under the tutelage of Peter Owens and has worked for Peter Owen’s Asian Treks for over 17 years. Starting out as a porter at the age of 17, Birkha worked his way up to a guide. He has trekked all major treks in Nepal, Ladakh and Pakistan.
Kirpa Tamang | Guide & Cook
Kirpa in the Mt. Kailash area, Tibet
Kirpa Tamang will never bore you on a trek with his culinary delights. From daal-bhat to mushroom pizza or even a birthday cake at 5,000m, he will make sure your meals on the trek are something you will remember. Kirpa has been part of the CMT family for more than 20 years starting out as a porter and a Kitchen boy.
He is aware of the importance of a balanced and delicious meal. After a trek, most of our previous trekkers have praised Kirpa's culinary skills. He's among the most patient people in this world.
Kami Tamang | Guide and Cook
Soft-spoken but efficient, Kami is probably the most patient of CMT’s guides. Kami has worked with CMT for more than 15 years and has been to numerous trekking destinations in Nepal and Tibet. He is a great guide, cook and friend.
Pesal Rai | Cook
Pesal in Dolpo
Pesal is another individual who epitomizes patience. Pesal has worked in the trekking industry as a porter, kitchen boy and cook for more than 25 years. There is NOT a single trekker that does not have praise for Pesal's culinary skills. Pesal is diminutive but pound-for-pound, he is one of the strongest person and will carry astounding loads if required. He is also one of our team leader's favorite staff and goes out as a cook on most of Jwalant's scouting trips.
Devraj Rai | Junior Guide
Devraj, Phoksumdo Lake, Dolpo
Devraj started out as a porter some 15 years ago slowly working his way up to Kitchen Boy and Assistant Guide. Devraj is now a permanent Junior Guide with CMT and is showing promise to becoming a senior guide. To improve his guiding skills, he has been going out on a lot of trips as assistant guide, and has been taking several English and first-aid courses.
Rajbir Rai | Junior Guide
Rajbir on Gokyo Ri
Rajbir is an up-and-coming Junior Guide at CMT. Reviews from clients from previous treks have been very encouraging and he will soon graduate to become a full-fledged guide very soon. He is one of the strongest guides around and can carry very heavy loads if required. Rajbir started out as a porter and is now a junior guide. Like Devraj he is honing his guiding skills as assistant guide to our senior guides on many trips every year and has been attending English classes.
Sune Gurung| Junior Guide
Sune in Dolpo
Sune Gurung is another promising Junior Guide at CMT. Sune's pleasant demeanor is an asset on any trip. Sune started out as a porter and is now a junior guide. He too is honing his guiding skills working as an assistant guide to our senior guides on many trips every year and has been attending English classes.
Rinji Sherpa | Senior Climbing Guide
Rinji on the Summit of Dhampus Peak
Rinji has worked as a climbing guide for more than 2 decades and is one of the most mature climbing guides around. This means "safety first" and hence no rash decisions. Rinji has summitted many of Nepal's highest mountains including Cho Oyu, Amadablam, South Col of Everest etc. Rinji also joins our team leader on most of his scouting escapades every year.
Dendi Sherpa | Climbing Guide
Dendi with Al prior to their climb
Dendi is one of the STRONGEST climbing Sherpa's around and has several Everest summits besides other 8K'ers under his belt. Despite this, he is very humble and is always looking to enrich client's experience. Ask any of our previous clients, and they only have praises for Dendi.
*A note about our guides:
Friendly and mature, our guides will go out of their way to make your trek a safe and memorable experience. We vouch for our guides and can guarantee on their honesty and their experience. They will always do what is right.