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The Manaslu Circuit route, like the classic Annapurna Circuit route, offers a spectacular and complete Nepal experience. The journey begins in lush sub-tropical forests and deep canyons slowly ascending to remote mountain villages with jaw-dropping vistas of snow capped peaks.
The Manaslu Circut is a circuit of the Manaslu massif – Manaslu is the world’s seventh highest mountain at 8,156m. Located along the border of Nepal and Tibet, this region is both beautiful and fascinating. While the trek is fairly long, the rewards are well worth the commitment. Trekking here was only allowed since 1991. Both a Conservation Area fee and a restricted area fee are required to trek here.
This region is geographically spectacular and culturally fascinating. Hindus (Brahmin/Chhetris) and Gurungs (Bonpos and Buddhists) inhabit the lower Buri Gandaki region (sub-tropical). In the upper parts (sub-alpine and alpine) of the Buri Gandaki river, Buddhists who are direct descendants of Tibetan immigrants settled here in the early 1600’s. Once over the Larkya la pass, you will descend back to the sub-tropical regions inhabited by the Hindus (Brahmin/Chhetris) and Gurungs (Bonpos and Buddhists). The crux of the trek is the high pass of Larkya La (16,700ft) which is one of the most dramatic pass-crossing in the Himalaya.
All our Manaslu Treks are private treks for a minimum of two participants. We are proud to give back to our community through our giving arm – 3 Summits For Nepal – managed by Crystal Mountain Treks staff. Contact us to learn more…
On this running trip, you will only be required to carry your running pack with provisions for the day and a camera (5 – 10 lbs). Your main gear should be packed into a duffel bag (not weighing more than 25lbs) which will be carried by our porters. The porters will leave early every morning taking the bulk of your duffels to the next destination. You may run at your own pace and we have a guide to client ratio of 1:3.
Our running guides are mostly graduates from the Mira Rai Initiative (MRI) who either aspire to race competitively (both domestic and international races) or have retired from competitive racing. At MRI, aspiring young female trail runners are not only provided training for trail running competitions but are also empowered with important life skills.
Total Distance: approximately 89 miles
Highest Elevation: 16,950ft
Total Elevation gain: 21,800 ft.
Daily running time: 3 to 5 hours (with one longer day of around 6 hours)
PER PERSON PRICE (valid until December 31, 2022)
2-4 participants: US$ 3,000 per person
5 or more participants: US$ 2,550 per person
Single Supplement: US$200
This trek is not recommended for the Winter months of December, January and February.
Arrive Kathmandu. You will be met on arrival at the Tribhuwan International Airport. Transfer to Hotel. Day Free. Enjoy welcome dinner. Briefing during dinner.
Overnight Hotel Tibet.
Visit Pashupatinath, Nepal’s most sacred Hindu temple dedicateed to Shiva, with its two-tiered golden roof and silver door. Here, you’ll probably witness a Hindu cremation along the banks of the Bagmati River.
Then drive to Bhaktapur, the city of Devotees, for lunch and a tour of the royal palace square. Bhaktapur is a medieval city inn the Kathmandu valley and is least disturbed by modern life. Here, you can absorb the architectural splendor of the five-storied Nyatapola temple, or the sculptural delight of the Peacock Window. In the evening, back at the hotel, make final preparations for your Manaslu Circuit trek.
Overnight Hotel Tibet or similar.
MEALS: B, L
Board a chartered bus to Arughat. We follow the Trishuli river on paved highway for about three hours and then head north on the bumpy jeep track at Dhading Besi. Arughat is a good size settlement by the Budi Gandaki river where your permits will be checked at the police station. Continue for another hour towards Soti Khola. The total drive can take up to 9 hours.
Today is the first day of running. It’s best to ease into the running trip. Today’s run should be between 8.5 to 9 miles and should take us around 5 hours. The trail does not involve substatiantal elevation gain/loss but it can be hot and humid as we follow the Budi Gandaki river to Maccha Khola.
Another day of short ascents and descents of approximately 14 miles which should take us another 5-6 hours. We soon cross Tatopani (Hot-spring). Continue to Jagat.
Jagat is a beautiful stone-paved village with a rudimentary trekker’s hotel, shops, and a customs office. Jagat is the entrance to Manaslu Conservation Area, an area where the concept of integrated conservation and development is being implemented to achieve conservation and sustainable development objectives. There is also an MCAP (Manaslu Conservation Area Project) office here where your permits will be checked.
Today is 10 mile day which should take us around 4-5 hours. We cross the Buri Gandaki river over a long suspension bridge at Ghatta Khola, then follow the route ustream. Climb up a steep incline to reach Philim (1,590m/5,216ft). Philim is a large Gurung village with fields of corn and millet. The hillsides become steeper beyond Philim until Aga.
The trail then passes through a narrow, dramatic gorge with towering walls, and past a thundering waterfall. Cross the river on locally-built bridges and then leave the gorge to climb to the small village of Deng (1,800m/5,905ft). The ‘Nupri’ region starts here at Deng. Nupri translates to “the Western Mountains” and the people of Nupri are direct descendants of Tibetans immigrants who settled here in the 1600s.
The trip today involves running approximately 11 miles and should take us 4-5 hours. We cross the Buri Gandaki again and from here you will start observing Mani walls (stones carved with prayers on their surface and stacked to form a wall) – a sign of Tibetan Buddhism being practiced in the area.
The trail is level, then climbs and drops and climbs again to the village of Ghap (2,110m/6,922ft). Run through barley fields lined with mani walls and continue towards a fir forest, where you might catch sight of the Danphe – impeyan pheasant which is also Nepal’s colorful National bird. Continue climbing into a dense, rhododendron-fir forest and enter Namrung (2,660m/8,727ft) through a stone kaani arch.
Today, we will run 10 miles for approximately 5 hours. Beyond Namrung, the trail enters upper Nupri where the residents are of Tibetan origin. Climb through a fir-rhododendron-oak forest. The trail passes through another stone kaani and enters Lihi (2,900m/9,514ft). Lho is a closely-packed village with unusual architecture: the stone houses are grouped together into units of five or six that share a common roof and courtyard. Most roofs are made of heavy wood shingles.
Today’s run to Samagaon is approximately 10 miles and should take us around 5 hours. Head towards Sho (2,960m/9,711ft). From Sho onwards, and towards Lho (3,180m/10,433ft), you will also start viewing Manaslu north (7,157m/23,480ft) and Nalike Peak (5,5515m/18,093ft).
Samagaon – or Ro, as the locals call it – sits in a bowl at the foot of the pastures leading to high peaks. There are two gompas (monasteries) here with unique architecture. The residents of Samagaon are Tibetan descendents, and they continue to maintain an active trade with Tibetans across the border. A lay over day is planned at Samagaon during which you can trek towards the Manaslu Base Camp.
Today’s run of approximately 10 miles (3 hours) to Samdo on a mostly level-small incline pleasant trail. Another layover day is planned at Samdo for exploration and acclimatization.
Today’s short trek of approximately 7 miles (2 hours) takes usto the base of Larkya la pass. This is a short day of around 3 hours. Retire to bed early to prepare for an early and long pass crossing day. Since rooms are limited, it is possible that you might have to sleep at the semi-permanent tents set up by the lodge owner. Camp is at 4,480m/14,700ft.
Today’s final day involves running of approximately 10 miles in about 4 hours. Descend through Rhododendron and oak forests to the Gurung village of Tilje with spectacular mountain views on either side. The trail joins main Annapurna Circuit trail at Dharapani.
Board a chartered vehicle for the bumpy ride to Besi-Sahar. We are now on the classic Annapurna Circuit trail where a jeep track has been built. From Besi-Sahar, we continue a short distance to Dumre where we join the highway to Kathmandu.
Farewell dinner at your hotel.
Overnight Hotel Tibet.
Meals: B, L, D
Transfer to the airport for final departure.
Activity: Lodge Trek
The Gokyo Lakes trek is a great alternative for those who wish to avoid the popular (and busy) trail to Everest Base Camp. The views from Gokyo Ri (5,357m/17,575ft.) and Renjo La pass (5,465m /17,930ft) are arguably better than those from Kalapathar. Ascend from Namche through yak pastures and Sherpa settlements along the Gokyo valley. We follow the Dudh Koshi river to its source near the Ngozumpa glacier. All along you will be rewarded with the most dramatic mountain views of anywhere in the world.
Khumbu is the home of Mount Everest (8,850m). The giant is better known as Sagarmatha among Nepalis and Chomolongma by the Sherpas. On the Gokyo lakes trek, enjoy views of Everest, Cho-Oyu, Makalu, Pumori, Amadablam, Thamserku, Tarboche, Cholatse etc.
From Namche, we head north west following the Dudh Koshi river to its source near the Gokyo Lakes. The Gokyo Lakes trek culminates at Gokyo on the banks of the third lake. Here, we will spend three nights exploring the area. On our second day at Gokyo, we will hike to either Gokyo Ri or Renjo La pass for views of the lakes and the mountains (see photo above). On the third day, we will hike to the 5th lakes for up-close views of Cho Oyu and other mountains.
It is possible to combine the Gokyo Lakes trek with the Everest Base Camp trek. Check out our 19-day Everest Base Camp Trek or the 15-day Everest Base Camp – fast paced trek. If you have more time and wish to be more adventurous, check out the Ultimate Everest Trek. This involves crossing two passes. First the Cho La pass (Everest Base Camp to Gokyo lake) and then the Renjo La pass (from Gokyo lake to Thame). An even more physically challenging trek is the Everest Three Passes Trek. This trek involves crossing the Kongma La pass (Chukkung to Lobuche) besides the Cho La pass and the Renjo La pass. No climbing skills are required for these treks. We are also happy to customize any of these treks for you.
All our Gokyo Lakes Treks are private treks for a minimum of two participants for a date of your choosing. We do NOT nickel-and-dime on services – all inclusions and exclusions are clearly listed in cost details. Some companies will advertise trips for very low prices but they have a lot of exclusions that is usually not clear. Most of our trekkers are either repeat clients or referrals. We have been in business for over 30 years and we employ only the most professional and friendly staff.
We are also proud to give back to our community through 3 Summits For Nepal managed by Crystal Mountain Treks staff. Contact us to learn more…
The Makalu Base Camp is a lodge-to-lodge trek. And, on this trek, participants get up-close with the fifth highest mountain in the world – Mt. Makalu (8,485m). The lodges are quite basic so we will carry some food to supplement what’s available at the local lodges. Furthermore, we will also carry tents so you may opt to sleep in tents in some of the places.
Eric Shipton was the first outsider to have trekked in the region in 1950’s. Consequently, the Shipton Pass on this trek was named after this English explorer. The trek starts in a relatively lower elevation which is home to Rai’s, Gurung’s and Tamang people. Ascending slowly, the trek follows a trail through the beautiful Makalu Barun National Park which is home to diverse flora and fauna. Past the Barun river are the spectacular granite rocks and waterfalls. Finally, the villages near the Base Camp are home to the Sherpas.
This trek is challenging and requires crossing of several passes (though lesser than 5,000m). From Base Camp, you have the option to climb to a view-point which offers a panorama of Everest (8,848m), Lhotse (8,516m) and Baruntse (7,129m)
The trek begins with a flight to Tumlingtar. You then trek to the Base Camp and return on the same trail. The trek ends with a flight out to Kathmandu from Tumlingtar.
The Makalu Base Camp Trek is a private trek for a minimum of two participants. We do NOT nickel-and-dime on services – inclusions and exclusions are clearly listed in cost details. Some companies will advertise trips for very low prices but they have a lot of exclusions that is usually not clear. With over 30 years of experience, most of our trekkers are either repeat clients or referrals. We employ the most professional and friendly staff. We are also proud to give back to our community through our giving arm – 3 Summits For Nepal – managed by Crystal Mountain Treks staff. Contact us to learn more…