OverviewJaro Ri is a little peak in the Khumbu which packs a surprising punch for what appears to be a small peak. The peak is not labeled on any maps I have and the only answer I could find from the locals as to its name is Jaro Ri. One photograph labels it as Kongde Ri, but one map shows Kongde Ri farther east. Interestingly, ri usually denotes a subpeak on a ridge, but this peak isn’t a sub peak of anything.
Regardless of the name, the peak is a great viewpoint and has an interesting stupa on top. When viewing the peak from Khunde and Khumjung, I expected the peak to be a nice viewpoint with a path to the top, but it was actually a challenging and fun scramble over gigantic boulders (which could make for some interesting bouldering). There was much bird life as well and we saw some really colorful pheasants.
Since most people spend an acclimatization day in Namche Bazaar or Khunde/Khumjung, this peak is a great way to kill a few hours and soak up the views of the mentioned villages and the mighty peaks of the Himalaya.
Getting ThereThe climb of Jaro Ri begins In Namche Bazaar, Khunde, or Khumjung (which the two latter are reached from Namche Bazaar). Namche Bazaar can be reached on foot from several directions. The two most popular routes to Namche Bazaar are from the trail from Lukla Airport or the walking route from Jiri and Bhandar.
As of December 2012, only Sita Air and Yeti Air (which are basically the same company) fly to Lukla. Namche Bazaar is two days on foot from Lukla, and most people spend one, two, or more days acclimatizing in Namche Bazaar before heading higher to other areas, which is a very wise move.
Be aware that flights to Lukla can only fly in good weather and that sometimes planes are grounded for days.
The walking route from Bhandar to Namche Bazaar takes 8-9 days plus a long day’s bus ride from Kathmandu. Twelve buses a day leave from Kathmandu and from Jiri usually transport can be found to Bhandar.
Routes OverviewWest Slopes
This route climbs Jaro Ri from the rugged west side. I do not know if it is the easiest route, but it is a good route. From the monument/gate west of the peak (between Namche Bazaar and Khunde), the route makes its way through the boulders and around cliffs to the summit. There is a path in a few places, if you can find it, but we didn't see much of it until the way down. This is a surprisingly rugged and fun climb.
If coming from Namche on a day trip, plan on a half a day excursion, including seeing the villages of Khunde and Khumjung.
Other Recommended Side Trips from Namche BazaarBesides climbing Jaro Ri, there are plenty of other things to do for an acclimatization day while staying in Namche Bazaar.
West of the village of Khunde is the Goggla Danda, which has several nice peaks to climb. Some of them have steep trails to the top.
Northwest of Namche Bazaar is the very worthwhile trip to the villages of Thamo and Thame. Both have interesting monasteries/gompas (especially Thame). The mountain views are spectacular if you are lucky enough to have clear weather. The route trip distance Namche Bazaar to Thame is said to be 20 kms. Some people break the trip into two days, but my son and I did the round trip in an easy day, including climbing up to the Thame Monastery.
Red TapeA Sagarmatha National Park permit is required - 1000RS (US $11.50)
Bring a Passport and Passport size Photograph.
A Trekkers’ management system (TIMS) is also required and cost $ 20.
Most guesthouses and hotels in Kathmandu frequented by Westerners can help you obtain a permit, especially in Thamel.
Camping and Where to StayYou could camp along the trails, though I don’t know why anyone would want to since it wouldn't save much money and would isolate you from the friendly locals. Every village has several lodges for only a few dollars a night. Most (every one we saw) are clean and pleasant. All lodges serve food and snacks; so don’t bother with carrying any food along the trails.
Namche Bazaar, Khunde, and Khumjung all have plenty of places to stay.
When To ClimbMid September through mid May is the best time to trek and climb this peak. The monsoon is from June through mid-September, and this is not an ideal time to go because the trails are very wet and the lower forest are full of leaches, plus it rains every day and clouds usually obscure mountain views.
October, November, March, and April are the most popular months, and the trail and lodges can be very crowded. In my opinion, December is the very best month. The weather is cooler than the most popular months, but it is less crowded and prices in Kathmandu are a bit lower. December is also a very dry month.
On our first trip we had 47 days in the region during late November and mid-January with only one bad weather day. On the second trip we had two days of snow in a four week period early December to early January.
The winter season (late December through February) is also a good time to go with few crowds and usually good, but cold weather, but you can expect to have some snow and ice on the trails. Remember that there are villages along all the trails, so if you had to sit out some bad weather, it’s not that bad.
Be aware of very slippery boulders on this mountain if it has been rainy or snowy.
Mountain ConditionsCLICK HERE for the weather forecast for Namche Bazaar, which is just south of Jaro Ri and at 3440 meters/11,290 feet elevation.
Averages for Tengboche at 3860 meters/12,669 feet elevation are below:
|Month||High (° F )||High (° C)||Low (° F )||Low (° C)||in. Rain||mm Rain|