Sherpas are amazing people; they are kind, soft hearted, good natured, and when it comes to climbing peaks, they are overwhelmingly talented. It’s something that they attain at birth it seems. Sherpas help the mountaineers reach the peak, and if truth be told, the make the journey easier for the mountaineers. It makes sense that if you’re looking to go for Manaslu Climb, you should definitely do that with the Sherpas. Their support and company will transform your Manaslu Climb overall.
Manaslu, which roughly translates to ‘the mountain with the spirit, is among the peaks that every climber dreams of climbing at least once in their lifetime. The first time Mount Manaslu was ascended was in the year 1956. Since then, many have tried, succeeded and failed at climbing the eighth highest mountain in the world. Though there are so many others that supersede it in terms of height, many believe that Manaslu Mountain is one the toughest mountains to climb in the entire world. Probably, this is the reason why not all mountaineers are able to reach Manaslu summit in their first attempt.
Manaslu Expedition is a 46 days long journey, and it can be divided into three segments. The first segment consists of the least amount of physical activities. The days that you spend in Kathmandu, in the vehicle and on the plane while being transferred to the Manaslu region, and on the route during acclimatization can be categorized under this section. As mentioned, you perform the least amount of physical activities during these days. You either rest or travel during this time. This segment consists of 7 days altogether.
The second section of Manaslu Climb is a little tougher than the first one, as it involves trekking. You trek from SotiKhola to Manaslu Base Camp before the climb, and after you’ve descended, you trek from Manaslu Base Camp to Arughat. The entre trekking duration lasts for a period of 9 days.
Finally, the third section of Manaslu Climb, which is the most challenging, the most exciting, and the main part of the expedition! It takes 28 days altogether for the climbers to climb up the peak, and make their way back to the Manaslu Base Camp. There are multiple base camps throughout the Manaslu mountain, and the climbers go up and down Mount Manaslu several times, before finally ascending on the peak at 8163 m. This is what takes them such a long time. The process is crucial, as it helps their body acclimatize enough to bear the strong air pressure on the mountain, and especially on the top of Manaslu summit.
Manaslu Base Camp Trek
As the name clarifies it, Manaslu Base Camp trek is the trek up to Manaslu Base Camp. Altogether, the trek is 9 days long, and only one day is assigned for acclimatization. The trek starts and ends at SotiKhola. During your trekking journey, you’ll come across villages such as MachhaKhola, Jagat, Deng, Namrung, Samagaon, and so on. The route is jam-packed with attractions. You get to have the best views of peaks such as Manaslu, Himchuli, Ngadichuli, Ganesh, and so on.
The entire region is beautiful, and you realize it when you make your way through forests of rhododendron and magnolia. The entire route, along with the villages, is a part of Manaslu Conservation Area. It is one of the oldest conservation areas of Nepal, with a large population of rare and endangered species of animals and birds. The area also has diverse vegetation. On your trek, you’ll definitely come across few of these creatures. That’s a sure shot thing.
Apart from these, there are so many other natural spectacles such as rivers, waterfall, lakes, glaciers, passes, and so on. These will bring variation to the landscapes that you’d walk upon, and you’re your trekking journey challenging, adventurous, and full of fun. Another crucial attraction are the people living in the villages that you’ll cover during the trek. These belong to indigenous communities that have been living in the region for centuries. When you talk to them, you’ll get to know so many interesting things about their cultures, traditions, religion, and their way of life. It is an absolute pleasure to get to know them. It is human elements like these that add value to a trekking journey.
Now, if someone wishes to trek only up to Manaslu Base Camp, and make their way back, this is the itinerary they would follow. The same itinerary is followed even during the Manaslu Climb. However, trekkers generally follow a different itinerary to reach Manaslu Base Camp. As a matter of fact, Manaslu Base Camp isn’t the main attraction of the trek at all.
Manaslu Circuit Trek
Manaslu Circuit trek is a way for the trekkers to cover the entire region in one go. As a matter of fact, the trek doesn’t just take you through the entire Manaslu region, rather, it also offers you a whiff of Annapurna region, especially towards the end. The trek consists of 13 core trekking days altogether, including one day assigned for acclimatization. During the trek, you will cover villages such as Samdo, Bimtang, Tilje, Dharamsala, Tal, and so on.
Manaslu trek starts from SotiKhola, a village in the Manaslu region, and ends at Syange, a village in the Annapurna region. During the trek, you’ll be able to enjoy the views of peaks like Annapurna, Dhaulagiri, Machapuchhre, and so on, along with other mountains of the Manaslu region. The main attraction, and probably the most challenging part, of the trek is Larkya La, which is a high altitude mountain pass. Situated at 5160 m, it is one of the highest altitude passes of the Himalayan region.
Side Treks Around Manaslu Circuit Trek Route
One of the two major side treks around Manaslu Circuit trek is the trek to Manaslu Base Camp. Reflecting on the details mentioned above, trekkers generally don’t go for Manaslu Base Camp trek as an individual journey. Rather, they go for, Manaslu Circuit Trek, and cover Manaslu Base Camp in the process. By adding just one day to the itinerary of Manaslu Circuit Trek, the trekkers can cover Manaslu Base Camp. The route deviates at Samagaon, which is a village on the circuit trek route.
From Samagaon, instead of going north to Samdo, the trekkers could head west towards Manaslu Base Camp. They would spend the night at the Base Camp, soaking in all its beauty and goodness, and the next day, they could return to Samagaon, and finally make their way to Samdo, as they originally intended to. By introducing this tiny tweak to their itinerary, the trekkers could cover Manaslu Base Camp in their Manaslu Circuit trek journey.
The second of the two major side treks around Manaslu Base Camp is the Manaslu Tsum Valley trek. Going on this trip would make your entire trek religiously significant, as Tsum Valley is considered as sacred piece of land. In the early 15th century, Guru Milarepa, one of the most prominent Buddhist Gurus in history, visited the region, and meditated in the hills around the valley. This act of his is one of the reasons why this valley is considered so sacred. Throughout the trek, you’ll also find so many Buddhist relics and religious heritages, like chortens, mani walls, prayer wheels, monasteries, and so on, and the major ones among them are Mu Gompa, ChumchetGompa, Rachen Nunnery, and so on. By adding around 6 days to your Manaslu Circuit trek itinerary, you can visit all these beautiful places.
It is believed that years of being brought up at such an altitude has changed their physique in a way that they are naturally capable of withstanding the extreme environment. It is for a reason that mountaineers going for any kind of expedition in Nepal, and not just Manaslu Climb, tend to hire Sherpas as their support crew. Considering the notorious nature of the peak, when it comes to difficulty level, the best thing to do is to hire Sherpa guides for your Manaslu Climb. If you are a climbing enthusiast, experiencing Manaslu Climb along with the Sherpas can prove to be the best holiday option for you.
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