If you are looking for a perfect short trek in the heart of Himalayas with off the beaten path and a great view, Khopra Danda Trek will be the perfect choice for you. Khopra Danda Trekking Trail or Khayer Lake Trek is one of the newly open trekking routes in Annapurna region and connected with Annapurna Base Camp, walking route separated from Tadapani to Khopra Hill or Khayer Lake (Tal).
You pass through Rhododendron forest, magnificent view of Himalayan panorama which includes Mt. Dhaulagiri, Annapurna (I, II, III and south), Hiunchuli, Machhapuchhare (Fishtail), Lamjung Himal and Nilgiri. This program is perfectly designed for those who want to explore non-touristic trekking route in Annapurna region.
Day 1: Arrive in Kathmandu (1350m/4429ft)
Day 2: Drive to Pokhara (200kms/6 Hrs)
Day 3: Drive to Nayapul and trek to Ghandruk (1970m/6463ft, 4 hrs)
Day 4: Trek from Ghandruk to Tadapani (2630m/8628ft, 3 hours)
Day 5: Trek from Tadapani to Bayli Kharka (3437m/11276ft, 6 hours)
Day 6: Trek from Bayli to Upper Chistibung (3026m/9927ft, 5 hours)
Day 7: Trek from Chistibung to Kopra Ridge (3660m/12007ft, 4 hours)
Day 8: A short hike to Khayar Lake (4600m/15091 ft, 7-8 hrs)
Day 9: Trek from Khopra Ridge to Swanta (2214m/7263ft, 6 hours)
Day 10: Trek from Swanta to Ghorepani (2860m/9383ft, 5 hours)
Day 11: Hiking up to Mohare Hill (3320m/10892ft, 4 hours)
Day 12: Trek from Ghorepani to Tikhedunga (1540m/5052ft, 5 hours)
Day 13: Trek down to Nayapul and drive back to Pokhara
Day 14: Drive back to Kathmandu (200kms/6 Hrs)
Day 15: Full day visit Kathmandu City
Day 16: Final Departure
Welcome to Nepal, the Land of the Himalayas! You will be guided to your hotel by a Great Nepal representative once you arrive at the airport. You will have the rest of the day to do whatever you wish to do: get some sleep, stroll around or party hard. Well, do whatever suits you. Overnight stay at hotel in Kathmandu.
Next morning, a golden beam of sunrise fell on your face with cool breeze welcomes your day with delicious breakfast. Bidding farewell to the Kathmandu, you made your way back same route and you will get a chance to enjoy numerous beautiful sceneries on the way to Pokhara. Not only that but you can also choose to go for rafting or visit Manakamana on the way. Overnight stay at hotel in Pokhara.
From Pokhara you will be transferred by road to the starting point of the trek at Nayapul. You will start walk through the busy trading post of Nayapul. You will cross a small stream via suspension bridge and continue on a dirt road before crossing the Modi River to reach Birethanti. At Birethanti your trekking permits will be checked at the Annapurna Conservation Check Post. You will continue to hike following the Modi Khola upstream, passing through settlements inhabited by the Chettris and Brahmins. On a clear day looming majestically in the distance, you will see the Machhapucharre (6993m). Soon you will reach the small hamlet of Shyauli Bazaar where you will stop for the lunch. After lunch you will start the climb to Ghandruk. From the lodge at Ghandruk, you will have spectacular views of Annapurna South (7219m), Hiunchuli (6441m), Machapuchhare (6993m), and Hiunchuli (6434m). Stay overnight at Guesthouse Lodge.
Another day ascending ahead, but the walk will be easier now that you’ve found your trekking legs! Leaving the terraced hillsides and the village of Ghandruk behind, you will enter oak and rhododendron forest. This is a particularly pretty part of the walk, the forest is alive with the sound of birds and small tumbling waterfalls, and if you visit in spring, (late March to April) the rhododendron will be in full bloom. There are no villages on today’s route, but there will be a few teahouses at Baisi Kharkha, providing welcome drinks and a place to rest. There will be fine views of Annapurna II (7937m), Annapurna III (7555m), Annapurna IV (7525m), Annapurna South (7237m), Machhapuchhare (6993m) and Lamjung Himal (6931m) along the way. Your lodge at Tadapani is the perfect setting for sunset and sunrise views. Stay overnight at Guesthouse Lodge.
You will leave the main trail that leads to Ghorepani today and follow a rarely used trail - initially through thick rhododendron forest - that leads to local water buffalo pastures. The climb is gradual and soon you will emerge above the tree line to superb views of the Annapurna range. You will take lunch by a small stream and then continue to climb gradually though open countryside to reach a small pass, where the trail descends through Rhododendron to an open clearing known as Bayli Kharka and the lodge. From the lodge there are great views of Dhaulagiri Range. Stay overnight at Guesthouse Lodge/Home-Stay.
This morning you will descend through open ground and forest to reach the pastures of Lower Chistibung, where you will have lunch. After lunch you will continue to walk through forest, ascending gradually and passing through several buffalo grazing pastures to reach a clearing and temporary herder’s settlement at Upper Chistibung, where you will stay in the small community lodge. For the next week you will stay in lodges run by the local communities. We have contributed to the construction of these lodges, part of a series of projects to designed to aid the local community. Being off the beaten track, the villages haven’t previously enjoyed the benefits of tourism. Now with the network of our Community Lodges, there are profits to benefit local projects and schools. Stay overnight at Guesthouse Lodge/Home-Stay.
To reach the ridge at Kopra, you will embark on a steady climb that carries you above the tree line. This area is noted for wildlife, so you should keep your eyes open for Himalayan tahr and Danfe pheasant. The best way to tackle the climb is to ascend steadily, take your time and rest as often as you wish. You will reach the lodge on Kopra Ridge in time for lunch and will be greeted by more awe-inspiring views. This extraordinary panorama includes Annapurna South, towering directly above you at only six kilometres away, with Fang and Nilgiri prominent to the north. Across the depths of the Kali Gandakhi Valley, the Dhaulagiri Himal dominates the entire western skyline. The Kopra Community Lodge is the highlight of our work in the region. Stay overnight at Guesthouse Lodge/Home-Stay.
It is a very good idea to stay here at least two days; you can take a beautiful day’s hiking trip to Khayar Lake (4600m/15091ft). This, however, is not recommended for every trekker, because it is a very long way to trek to the lake and come back the same way to Khopra. It takes a minimum of 7 to 8 hours as a round trip. But it is good idea to go as far as Thanti (around 4200m. high) and come back. The views of nature’s beauty are mesmerizing. Stay overnight at Guesthouse Lodge/Home-Stay.
From Kopra Ridge you will descend off the hillside and continue steeply downhill. You will retrace the route back to Chistibung. You will then head to the village of Swanta, where you will stay overnight in the newly constructed lodge. We have supported the local school over the years, and there is time to pay a quick visit, and perhaps interact with the kids. Stay overnight at Guesthouse Lodge/Home-Stay.
From Swanta you will descend through the village fields to a small river and take a quick look at the local water mill. From here you will cross the suspension bridge and head upwards to the village of Chittre, where you’ll join the main trekking trail. There is a further ascent to reach the village of Ghorepani where you will be met with great views of the Dhaulagiri massif and a well-earned rest. Stay overnight at Guesthouse Lodge.
From Ghorepani, you will follow the trail of Poon Hill for 45 minutes, and then turn left on the grassy and Rhododendron forests with small ups and downs until reaching where the trail is flat. Then there is a more strenuous climb up to Humpal pass (3098m). Now you descend a bit on the other side, walk along a flat trail walk, then go up into the forest. There is a steep, grassy path along the ridge and finally you come to see the house of Mohare danda. Still continue hiking along the ridge with Dhaulagiri and Annapurna and Manaslu for sunset vistas! And views of the surrounding forest and the mysterious, southern landscapes! Moharedanda is a good place to take an extra day’s rest! Mohare Danda itself is a perfect natural towering ridge. It offers a spectacular 360 degree mountain view through the Dhaulagiri range (8167m), Annapurna range (8091m), Manaslu Himal (8163m) vistas of deep magical landscapes and magnificent sunrises and sunsets over the mountains. You will have your lunch there and return back same way to Ghorepani. Stay overnight at Guesthouse Lodge.
After having breakfast, for the rest of the day it is all downhill. The walk passes through beautiful Rhododendron forest and you will have lunch at the village of Nange thanti. In the afternoon you will continue to trek through the Rhododendron Forest. You will arrive at Ulleri with plenty of time to explore this picturesque village. You will have lunch there and to make the most of the day ahead. From the Ulleri there is a very steep descent of 500 meters on a stone staircase to the Bhurungdi Khola River where you will cross a small suspension bridge to reach the village of Tirkedunga. Stay overnight at Guesthouse Lodge.
After giving your knees next day to recover, you will continue a more gentle descent to the village of Birethanti, on the banks of the Modi Khola. Here you will have lunch and then cross the new bridge to the east bank, before following the river back to the pick-up point at Naya Pul. After saying farewell to your porters, you will be transferred by coach back to Pokhara. Overnight stay at Hotel in Pokhara.
After breakfast at Hotel drive back to Kathmandu (200kms/6 hrs). Rest of the day free on own. Overnight stay at Hotel in Kathmandu.
Today you will be going for sightseeing around the world heritage sites in the Kathmandu valley including Kathmandu Durbar Square, Swayambhunath and Patan City. Overnight stay at Hotel in Kathmandu.
Sadly your most memorable journey ends today. A Great Nepal representative will escort you to the airport 3 hours before your scheduled flight. On your way home you have plenty of time to think about your recent adventure and to plan your next wonderful adventure in Nepal.
To enable all expedition members to acclimatize well and hence maximize their chances of success, our expedition programs are prepared with sufficient time for acclimatization. Adaptation to the altitude takes time and there can be no short-cuts, even if supplementary oxygen is used in the final stages. The atmospheric pressure at the base camp is half of that at the sea level. A thorough program of acclimatization is built into the itinerary which consists of regulated height ascents, followed by descents and rests before the final ascent to the summit. This will prevent the climbers to get rid from altitude sickness.
WHAT KIND OF PERSONAL FIRST AID KIT SHOULD I CARRY?
Although our guides carry first aid medical kit, it is better to carry a supply of first aid items for your own personal use according to your health conditions. Here are the list of some general as well as some special medications you may require:
DOES HIGH ALTITUDE EFFECTS AND BENEFITS?
You will be affected by high altitude problems if it is your fist trip at a high altitude.The altitude has some important beneficial effects on the human body and your trips have been designed to enable these. Please familiarize yourself with the information on AMS (Acute Mountain Sickness) and understand how to avoid it and read on benefits of high altitude and take advantage of these to improve your body' metabolism.
WHAT IS ACUTE MOUNTAIN SICKNESS? (AMS)
Altitude sickness is the reaction of the body adjusting to decreasing amounts of oxygen. The high altitude slowly decreases the flow of oxygen means the higher you climb, the flow of oxygen is very thin resulting the malfunction of body.
Altitude sickness most commonly occurs from above 2,800 meters (9,200ft) but this is different for everyone - there is simply no way of knowing your own susceptibility prior to being at altitude thus it is vital for you to monitor your own health. AMS occurs when the body is unable to adopt at the higher altitude having less amount of oxygen. At an altitude of 5490m (18000 ft.), the oxygen availability becomes just the half of the availability at sea level. While only a third of oxygen is available at the summit of Mt. Everest. Symptoms may be mild and subside/go away after a day's rest, or if it is ignored it could lead to death.
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF AMS?
Symptoms can appear within 1-2 hours although most often appear 6-10 hours after ascent and generally subside in 1-2 days as the body adjusts to altitude. They may reappear as you continue to go higher. Symptoms of AMS usually occur gradually and can be one or a combination of the following:
• Headache: Due to the less amount of oxygen in air, the blood influences the blood vessels to spread wide in order to supply more oxygen to the brain and which cause them to show the early symptom of AMS.
• Dopiness: The trekkers or climbers feel very sleepy but could not.
• Shortness of breath: The breathing pattern changes as the breathing becomes faster and deeper than normal in order to get enough oxygen and rapid pulse
• Loss of appetite and nausea: Despite of physical exercise, the trekkers don’t have an appetite to eat. They will feel as if they want to vomit.
• Pins and Needles: Sensation of a limbs falling asleep.
• Fatigue: Physical pressure while trekking the long hours followed by Insomnia shows the next symptom of AIMS which is fatigue.
• Dizziness: A feeling of falling down, it is the early symptoms of AMS.
• Malaise: Malaise is the feeling of being sick which is also one of the symptoms of AMS.
• Swelling of hands, feet & face: Due to the accumulation of fluids, the tissues swell which is also one of the symptoms of AMS.
Symptoms associated with more severe Acute Mountain Sickness includes:
• Cyanosis (alteration of skin color into bluish or purplish)
• Chest tightness or congestion
• Coughing up blood
• Decreased consciousness or withdrawal from social interaction
• Grey or pale complexion
• Inability to walk in a straight line, or to walk at all
• Shortness of breath at rest
At high altitude, all people will experience some of the above symptoms in a mild form. If the body is unable to adjust to altitude these symptoms will persist and if they are left untreated, altitude sickness may progress to High Altitude Cerebral Edema (HACE) or High Altitude Pulmonary Edema (HAPE). Edema means simply fluid accumulation in your interstitial body tissues. Both HACE and HAPE can be fatal if ignored.
LIFE THREATENING FORMS OF AMS.
High Altitude Pulmonary Edema (HAPE)
If one accumulates of fluid in the lungs and mild fever then, there is a chance of High Altitude Pulmonary Edema (HAPE). The filling of fluid in the lungs is Pulmonary Edema. The fluid blocks the passage of fresh oxygen to get into the lungs which causes the shortage of oxygen. Though the exact reason for the HAPE has not been identified, scientists think that pressure of blood vessel around the lungs is directly proportional to the altitude. As a result the smaller blood vessels leak allowing the fluid to escape to the lungs. The treatment for the HAPE victims is to give the oxygen at the rate of 4 liters a minute, using Portable Altitude Chamber (PAC). In case of unavailability of PAC bag or oxygen, one is taken down to the low altitude which is the only way of life-saving. HAPE can also lead to unconsciousness which may also results to death in a short period of time.
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF HAPE (fluid in the lungs)?
• A dry cough, developing to a wet one with blood-tinged discharge or saliva
• Tightness in the chest & blueness/darkness of face, lips & tongue
• Low fever up to 38°C/100°F
• Severe fatigue, progressing to coma
High Altitude Cerebral Edema (HACE)
HACE is the accumulation of fluid in the brain due of the swollen blood vessels to the brain. HACE is also seen within a couple of hours and can send the patient to coma and take his/her life in just few hours likewise to HAPE. The excessive flow of blood to the brain due to the low-level oxygen causes vasodilation which eventually leads to leakage of blood vessels to the brain. A 4 to 8mg of dexamethasone is given as a first dose to those who suffer from such sickness and then 4mg Diamox is given an every six hours gap. Similarly, 2-4 liters/minute oxygen is given and one is taken to down if it is necessary.
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF HACE (fluid in the brain)?
• Severe headache symptoms not relieved by painkillers or lying down
• Confusion, disorientation & drowsiness
• Loss of balance or coordination
• Blurred or double vision/retinal hemorrhage
HOW TO PREVENT?
Certain medical conditions (such as respiratory disease) or medications (such as sleeping pills) can increase the risk of altitude sickness - it is important that you inform your guide of any medical conditions or medications before ascending to altitude. You can help your body to acclimatize and avoid altitude sickness by:
• Avoiding alcohol, tobacco and substances that can interfere with good delivery of oxygen to the body or cause dehydration
• Eating small, frequent meals high in carbohydrates
• Drinking plenty of water – the test of sufficient amount of water intake is ability to urinate colorless urine
• Taking it easy or have a rest. Walk at a slower pace than you would at sea level and avoid over-exertion
• Climb the mountain gradually and stop for a day or two of rest for every 600m/2000ft above 2,400m/8000ft
• Climb high but Sleep at a lower altitude if possible
• Learn how to recognize early symptoms of mountain sickness
WHAT IS THE TREATMENT?
Most travelers are able to successfully acclimatize by following the previously mentioned guidelines. However, there are instances where medical treatment is required. Ultimately, the best treatment for acute mountain sickness (AMS) is to descend to a lower altitude and rest. Early diagnosis is important. Acute mountain sickness is easier to treat in the early stages. The guide will monitor you all the time for symptoms and will pace you appropriately to minimize your exposure to AMS.
Cooperating with the guide and reporting if any of the above-described symptoms are seen allows your guide to undertaking appropriate and timely action to minimize your exposure to AMS. Sufficient time for acclimatization (After 3000 meters) is also another method to minimize AMS. Following precautions can be done in order to get rid of AMS:
• Don’t ascent up rapidly.
• Never use alcohol, sleeping pills and smoking.
• Drink more fluid 3-4 liters a day, clean boiled water / tea / coffee / soup / juice etc.
• Climb high and sleep low.
• Don’t go trekking alone, take guide/porter.
• Follow the advice from your guide, hotel, local people, guidebook.
• Descent if mild symptoms rapidly getting worse.
• Never leave or descent sick person along.
• Avoid getting cold.
• Take an easy and comfortable trekking route even if it is longer.
• Sleep more than normal.
Your Guide will carry some medications in First Aid Kit and may suggest for medication such as Ibuprofen, Paracetamol, combination of them or specific AMS medication. Standard and effective medication for prevention of AMS is Acetazolamide (Diamox) and it may be given to help improve breathing and reduce mild symptoms. This drug can cause increased urination. Ensure you drink plenty of fluids and avoid alcohol when taking this drug.
With severe cases of AMS, our guide will contact our office in Kathmandu and arrange your evacuation by helicopter. Before we accept you on the trek we will require that you purchase health and travel insurance including helicopter rescue and hospitalization.
HOW DO WE HANDLE DURING THE CASE OF EMERGENCY?
You never know when the unexpected situation comes and put you in hearse condition. So such cases you will be rescued by Helicopter. You are entirely liable for all the expenses incurred in evacuation. So, before coming to Nepal,please make your travel insurance. Ask your guide to arrange a runner to the nearest communication point and inform office about requirement of a helicopter. For evacuation, we require the name of the sick person and the exact location from where helicopter can airlift you. You should not leave the place after calling Helicopter for evacuation though you are feeling better than before.
HOW TO GET SAFE DRINKING WATER?
On the trek, there is a facility of purchasing safe drinking water in teahouses.It is better if you carry the water purifying pills on your own. On camping trek, the water will be treated with Potassium permanganate or Iodine. On the trail, water from the streams is safe to drink, but better not to use it directly for drinking.
DO WE BE SECURE DURING OUR JOURNEY?
Security and a safe journey is our core objective of trekking. Our guide holds licenses issued by the Nepal Government and our staffs are local, honest, kind and genuine. But we also insist you to take care of your own personal belongings. If you are on ‘camping trek’ please take your main bag inside the tent once you reach campsite and put all bags and belongings in the middle of the tent when you feel sleepy. Your guide assigns a Sherpa on turn wise basis to guard the campsite throughout the night. If you are on ‘Tea house arrangement, never leave your baggage unattended and keep your lodge room locked when you go out.
IS YOUR COMPANY GOVERNMENTALLY RECOGNISED?
Our company is not only governmentally recognize but also affiliated with several other national and international agencies related to tourism. Our Managing Director Mr. Surya Bahadur Ghimire has already performed Media and press coordinator role being the Executive Member for two years (2015-2017) in TAAN (TREKKING AGENCIES ASSOCIATION OF NEPAL), which is only an umbrella organization of all trekking agencies’ in Nepal.
Why is Tipping essential?
There are several reasons why you should tip in Nepal. It is quite the same as for what you tip in restaurants. They live in remote areas that are far from proper health and education facilities. Tipping them will additionally encourage them to manage good and nutritive food to eat, warm and comfortable clothes to wear or other necessary basic requirements to maintain their livelihood in a comfortable way. A small gesture of gratitude will do no harm to you but actually changes the lives of many people for a long time in many reasons. Our company has its fund collected from the same percentage of profit and sometimes from the tips of our guests which will directly be invested for uplifting the economic condition of guides, porters and other staffs of office. It’s nothing more than the way to add smiles on those laborious faces.