Trekking and Climbing
This is a classic trek to Lobuje Peak, one of the highest trekking peaks in Nepal. Lobuje, also spelt as Lobuche, has two distinct summits, Lobuje East [6,119 m] and Lobuje West [6,145 m]. Though they are connected by a continuous ridge, there is a sharp gap and a considerable distance between them. This trek takes you to the East Peak.; in order to trek to the Lobuje West you need an Expedition permit.
Lobuje Peak is an attractive summit and offers a variety of trekking routes, some already existing and other probable ones. When seen from near Pheriche, the dark triangle of its rocky East Face rises above the moraines of the Khumbu Glacier to an icy skyline. This skyline forms the South Ridge, the junction of the East Face with the glaciated route of ascent. This in turn leads to the summit ridge running north-west from the top of the East Face through several small summits to the East Peak.
The first recorded ascent of the true Lobuje East was made by Laurence Nielson and Sherpa Ang Gyalzen on 25 April, 1984. From then, there have been numerous ascents of the summit by mountaineers from all over. Descending into a marked notch and climbing steep snow/ice slopes, you reach the top of the striking true East Peak. This peak is rarely climbed and often mistaken as Lobuje West. Most of the trekkers climb the summit ridge only as far as a subsidiary snow summit, before the notch, south-east of the true peak. While trekking to the East Peak, you need to be careful of the false summits.
It’s a panoramic thrill flying into Kathmandu on a clear day. The views of snow-capped mountain peaks sprawling down below you are almost ecstatic, beginning a whole chain of memorable experiences that stay with you for a long, long time. As your plane lands at Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu, our waiting support team will meet and greet you at the arrivals and escort you to your hotel.
Kathmandu is the historical and cultural heart of Nepal and has been a popular destination for tourists ever since Nepal opened its doors to visitors. The city presents a wonderful mix of Hinduism, Tibetan Buddhism and Western influence. There will be a guided tour to UNESCO World Heritage Sites Boudhnath, the largest Buddhist stupa in Nepal and after that to Pashupatinath, the most popular Hindu shrine dedicated to Lord Shiva. You take a tour to Patan also called as Lalitpur (the City of Artisans), which is 5km away from Kathmandu. You will walk through Patan Durbar Square, and delight in the architectural wonders of Malla era. Mahaboudha Temple, Kumbeshwor Temple, Krishna Temple and Golden Temple are the major attractions at the square.
A scenic flight of thirty minutes from Kathmandu brings us to Lukla airport, a cliff-hanging airport in Khumbu from where most of the trekking in Everest region begins. After meeting the crew, you head up the Dudh Koshi Valley on a well-marked trail and then stay overnight in Phakding.
From Phakding, you cross and re-cross the river on high suspension bridges. Beyond Monjo is the entrance to Sagarmatha National Park which was set-up in order to protect and preserve the fragile mountain environment. You then take a steep hike to Namche, one of the most important stopovers during the trip. If the weather is clear, you get the first glimpse of Mt Everest. Namche is the main trading center in the Khumbu and has a busy Saturday market - a meeting place for the locals and the people from neighboring vicinity.
Namche is tucked away between two ridges amidst the giant peaks of the Khumbu and has an abundance of lodges, teashops and souvenir shops. It is an ideal place to spend a day, acclimatizing to the new altitude before heading off towards Tengboche. To acclimatize, you can visit Khunde village which has Hospital set-up by Sir Edmund Hillary, and Khumjung village which have a monastery known for having famous yeti scalp or take a one hour walk up to the Everest View Hotel above Namche for the sunset view of Ama Dablam, Nuptse, Lhotse and Everest. There are also good views from the National Park Centre and Museum just above the town.
From Namche, the trail contours on to the side of the valley, high above the Dudh Koshi. You get our first really good views of the great peaks of the Khumbu including Mt Everest, Lhotse, Nuptse and Ama Dablam. Passing by some settlements with numerous teashops, you descend steeply to a bridge over the river at Phunki Tenga. The village is an ideal stopover for lunch. Here you can rest before making the steep climb to Tengboche Monastery, one of the most remarkable monasteries you visit during the whole trek. Although the hike up the zigzag path is tiring, it presents us with many beautiful sights of rhododendron bushes with beautiful birds and superb mountain scenery. Tengboche is famous for its legendary monastery, the largest in the Khumbu. A spectacular panorama of Everest, Lhotse and Ama Dablam rising in the horizon can be seen from here.
You descend downhill through a forest, cross the Imja Khola and climb steadily to the village of Pangboche. This village is directly opposite Ama Dablam [6,812 m], and has exceptional views of the mountain, with the monastery, mani walls and scattered pine trees in the foreground. A further two hours’ walk-through scrub junipers bring you to Dingboche.
You have an easy walk today as it’s just about 3 hours’ hike on flat trail to Chhukung Village (4730m) – the last village in Imja Khola Valley. Walking through the valley, you have a marvelous view of Lhotse’s massive south wall dominating the region.
Today is a challenging day as you cross the first one of the three passes. You start from the west of the village through a well-defined trail. After about an hour of easy walk, you start ascending along the steep path towards Kongma La. You come across a frozen lake right below the pass. After crossing the lake starts a very steep ascent till the top from where you can see the incredible views of the valley. Then you walk down through the sections of scree and boulder fields towards the eastern side of Khumbu glacier and finally make your way to Lobuche.
Leaving Lobuche, you trek along the trail about four hours to Lobuche Base Camp. After walking halfway on flat land, you follow steep ascending path to reach Lobuche Base Camp. The path is quite rocky and it moves along the bank of Lobuche Glacier. En route, you get to enjoy the spectacular views of Cholatse, Tawache, Ama Dablam, Pokhalde, Thanserku, Kantega, etc.
Today is a rest day at the Base Camp for acclimatization and also for making the necessary preparation for the climb.
You begin your climb as you hike over smooth slabs, following cairns, (stone markers), onto the hard snow. Further on, there is steep climbing of about 60 degrees. You head along the knife-edged ridge, less than 12inches (25 centimeters) in places to finally reach the summit. At the summit, you will catch panoramic views of Everest, Lhotse, Nuptse, Ama Dablam, Tawache, Cholatse, Pumori, Changri, etc. After enjoying your hard-earned climb, you return to the Base Camp and either stay there or continue towards Dzogla
Out of Dzongla, the trail heads northwest through a flat area. After crossing a stream, the trail climbs steeply towards Cho la glacier along the snowy trail (micro spikes recommended). Slowly you make the way through incredibly slippery and tricky trail with field of icy scree around you. Once you inch yourselves to the top of Cho La, the second of the three passes, you will be welcomed by the splendid mountain vistas. Then you start descending towards the western side of the pass which is relatively steeper than the other side but less technical. After reaching the valley floor, you walk through a flat land for a while and start another climb and endless descent to Trangnang.
From Trangnang, you continue the treacherous glacial walk across Ngozumpa glacier to reach a beautiful village of Gokyo, by the side of an enormous turquoise lake (if not frozen).
Today is the rest day to explore around the village for acclimatization. You climb the nearby Gokyo Ri, a perfect viewpoint to savor the eternal beauty of Gokyo Lakes and Khumbu peaks including Everest, Cho Oyu, Lhotse, Makalu etc. You also hike to the nearby fourth and fifth Gokyo lakes. From the exclusive viewpoints of the lakes, you can have the remarkable views of Ngozumpa glacier and Cho-Oyu Base Camp.
You head for the final pass of this trek. Early in the morning, you begin to walk through the northern shore and start your climb along the lake to flat area. The trail continues to slowly climb till the base of Renjo La. Once you start climbing the pass, the ascent becomes very steep. As you reach the top you will be rewarded by the awesome views of Makalu and Rolwaling range. Finally, you have completed all the three passes! Descending from the pass, you come across some scree fields marked with cairns and stony steps. The trail leads to the valley floor past small alpine lakes continuing till Lungde village.
Today is the day of easiest walk through the gradually descending flat trail. From Lungde, the trail continues towards south. Passing through Marulung, a quiet village, you head to Thame, a very beautiful town situated at the confluence of Bhote Koshi and Thame Khola Valleys. It’s a growing town filled with houses and monasteries especially Thame Gompa, the site for the spring celebration of the Mani Rimdu festival. The town is a proud home of Apa Sherpa, a world-famous mountaineer holding the world record for climbing Everest 21 times; and Tenzing Norgay Sherpa, one of the first Everest summiteers.
The trail today winds along the Bhote Khoshi valley. First you descend steeply having some good views of Teng Kangpoche and Kwangde. Then you pass through a steady trail strewn with prayer flags and mani stones. Heading further west, you reach Namche, this time from the opposite end of the town’s amphitheater. The town’s liveliness makes us feel that you are back to the civilization once again. Your early arrival gives you ample of opportunities to explore the town one last time before you head down.
Your final day's trekking follows the Dudh Koshi down to Lukla. This last evening calls for a celebration. You will have a party with your Sherpa guides and porters. You sample some chang (local beer) and try out some Sherpa dance steps. Altogether an end to a memorable trip on a merry note!
You pack up early and head for the airstrip to hop a flight back to Kathmandu. On touchdown, the rest of your day is free to do your own things. You could do some last-minute shopping and packing, or even go down for a stroll in Thamel, an internationally known hub for tourists in Asia.
Our Nepali support team will take you to the airport for your flight home. (Or stay longer for short tours such as game drive at National Parks, do some wild-water rafting, a Tibet tour or even mountain biking, etc). Please ask us!