Manaslu circuit 2016

Manaslu circuit 2016

Page Type Page Type: Trip Report
Date Date Climbed/Hiked: Oct 16, 2016
Activities Activities: Hiking
Seasons Season: Fall


The Himalaya's beside a toothpaste made from some scented herbs meant for me a country existing just is the fairy tales, lost in the haze of the immense distance and I thought it would remain that maybe forever…Recently this mythical province turned into a tangible reality with all of its miracles and wonders. Clicking with fervour our cameras we tried to record as much as possible of these miracles, of course unsuccessful. But never mind! We still can remember the innumerable waterfalls, the endless humming of the river attending us, the booming of the wind at a middle of a suspension bridge, the billions of stars above us, the chilly breath of the mornings or the whistling of the mule drovers.  

It was tough, but it was worth to do it, surely every of us got shorter with thousands of calories, but we returned home with hundreds of experiences we had not lived before.


First day we spent with purchasing the permissions for the Conservation Area, shopping some missing items, as sleeping bags, gas tank for the camping stowe, and visiting some famous places in the town, as Pashupatinath or Swayambhunath (Monkey temple).

Unnamed Image
Shree:Gha (Sheegal) - Thamel district
Ornamental facade in Thamel district
Ornamental facade in Thamel district

One of the most sacred Hindu temples of Nepal - Pashupatinath Temple is located on both banks of Bagmati River on the eastern outskirts of Kathmandu. Pashupatinath is the most important temple dedicated to god Shiva. Every year this temple attracts hundreds of elderly followers of Hinduism. They arrive here to find shelter for the last several weeks of their lives, to meet death, be cremated on the banks of the river and travel their last journey with the waters of the sacred river Bagmati, which later meets the holy river Ganges. Hinduists from every corner of Nepal and India are arriving here to die. 

It is believed that those who die in Pashupatinath Temple are reborn as a human, regardless of any misconduct that could worsen their karma. The exact day of their death is predicted by astrologers of the temple. If you are attracted to the places where the spirit of death can be felt, then consider Pashupatinat has your first destination. It is a temple with special atmosphere of death; death is present in almost every ritual and every corner of it.

Unnamed Image Pashupatinath


Unnamed Image Pashupatinath


Unnamed Image Swayambhunath

The city from Swayambhunath

The tour

We had to wake up very early in the morning to avoid the rush hour. There was a long journey in front of us. Driving on asphalt we proceeded quite well, but after we turned on a dirty road, at the first serious pot-hole we had to realize that our van was too weak for that terrain, so continued our tour on foot. After about an hour of walking we could get on a local bus, almost full with passengers and some boxes with hundreds of one-day chickens. With a second change to another bus just before dusk we reached our first destination in Soti Khola. There we slept for the first time in a so called tea-house. The trail started here, following all the time the river Budhi Gandaki, with a daily elevation of 5-600 meters, just perfect for acclimatization.

Unnamed ImageOn way to Aarughat

Soti Khola

Unnamed Image Soti Khola to Machha Khola

The friendly and devout

Unnamed Image Machha Khola to Jagat

Break at the primary school

At Jagat we reached the border of the Manaslu Conservation Area, from here we hoped we would not see more coke bottles or plastic bags just thrown away.
The Manaslu Conservation Area, declared as such in December 1998 under the National Parks and Wild Life Conservation Act, subsumes Manaslu within it. The area covered under the conservation zone is 1,663 square kilometres (642 sq mi) and is managed by the National Trust for Nature Conservation (NTNC) of Nepal. The status of "conservation area" applied to the Manaslu area or region was with the basic objective "To conserve and sustainable management of the natural resources and rich cultural heritage and to promote ecotourism to improve livelihood of the local people in the MCA region."

Unnamed ImageJagat to Bihi


Unnamed ImageStill life

Unnamed ImageValley of river Budhi Gandaki

Waterfall just beside the trail

From Bihi we slowly left behind the Hinduist region and entered the Buddhist one. This two are the main religions of Nepal.  The overwhelming majority of the Nepalese population follows Hinduism, and Buddhism is the dominant religion of the thinly populated northern areas, which are mostly inhabited by Tibetan-related peoples, such as the Sherpa.  

Unnamed ImageBihi to Namrung

Beautiful gate in Namrung

Unnamed ImageOur landlady in Namrung

The Hatted – one of our porters

More and more chortens we met in our way. Chorten is a Buddhist shrine, typically a saint's tomb or a monument to the Buddha.

Unnamed ImageNamrung to Lho Bazar
Namrung to Lho Bazar

Unnamed ImageNamrung to Lho Bazar
Namrung to Lho Bazar

Unnamed ImageManaslu and the monastery -Lho Bazar

Unnamed ImageLho Bazar
Lho Bazar

Unnamed ImageFaces – Nepali kid
Faces - Young monk

The night before Samagaon: maybe our best evening, with very nice accommodation and a very kind landlord and landlady. We were allowed to enter the kitchen and we could follow how our dinner was prepared. Some of us had the umpteenth occasion to taste the most popular and most common nepali dish, the dal bath: a traditional meal popular in many areas of Nepal, Bangladesh and India.
It consists of steamed rice and a cooked lentil soup called dal. It is a staple food in these countries. Bhat may be supplemented with roti in Nepal (rounds of unleavened bread). Dal may be cooked with onion, garlic, ginger, chili, tomatoes, or tamarind, in addition to lentils or beans. It always contains herbs and spices such as coriander, garam masala, cumin, and turmeric. Recipes vary by season, locality, ethnic group and family.
Dal bhat is often served with vegetable tarkari or torkari – a mix of available seasonal vegetables. It is also called Dal Bhat Tarkari in Nepali. There may also be yogurt or curry made of chicken, goat meat or fish. A small portion of pickle (called achar) is sometimes included.

Unnamed ImageKitchen
6 AM

Shine, Manaslu!
Shine, Manaslu!

Manaslu (Nepali:मनास्लु, also known as Kutang) is the eighth highest mountain in the world at 8,163 metres (26,781 ft) above sea level. It is located in the Mansiri Himal, part of the Nepalese Himalayas, in the west-central part of Nepal. Its name, which means "mountain of the spirit", comes from the Sanskrit word manasa, meaning "intellect" or "soul". Manaslu was first climbed on May 9, 1956 by Toshio Imanishi and Gyalzen Norbu, members of a Japanese expedition. It is said that "just as the British consider Everest their mountain, Manaslu has always been a Japanese mountain".

Manaslu is the highest peak in the Gorkha District and is located about 64 km (40 mi) east of Annapurna.The mountain's long ridges and valley glaciers offer feasible approaches from all directions, and culminate in a peak that towers steeply above its surrounding landscape, and is a dominant feature when viewed from afar.

Unnamed ImageSamagaon
Somewhere above Samagaon

In Samagaon we had a half day for rest, but about half of the team instead of rest decided to make an acclimatization climb to a smaller peak in the surroundings. From the village situated at 3.500 meters above the sea level, we climbed about 600 meters to 4.100.
Next day with a short walk and an elevation of about 300 meters we reached our last stop before the Larkya pass. Here we spent two nights, and we did two another acclimatization climbs to 4.100 and 4.500 meters above the sea level. 

From Samagaon to Samdo - Manaslu again
From Samagaon to Samdo - Manaslu again

Unnamed ImageChorten at the entrance of Samdo
Guest-house in Samdo

Unnamed ImageBackview to Samdo
Angry yak

Above Samdo
Above Samdo

Unnamed ImageFrom above Samdo

The majority of the group had never been above 3.000 meters, so we didn’t know how would they support the thin air of the pass. The evening before departure we decided to miss the lass stop at Dharamshala, and to do the last two sections during one day. An early start was a must, so we woke up at 2 am, and at 3 am we left behind the last houses of Samdo. We had to climb more than 1.300 meters up to the pass, and from there 1.400 meters to descend to Bhimtang, the first village on the other side of the pass.

Unnamed ImageTo Larkya pass
To Larkya pass

Unnamed ImageTo Larkya pass
To Larkya pass

We've done it!
We've done it!

Unnamed ImageGlacier of Manaslu as seen from Larkya pass
Larkya pass – we started to descend

Larkya La (pass) is not the highest of the trekking passes of Nepal, but it carries its own challenges and dangers, not least because of the need to commit to a 10-12 hour day, including four or five hours at altitude on rough and exposed terrain.
A long 1400-metre descent led to the first settlement on the other side of the pass, Bhimtang.

Unnamed ImageMorning in Bhimtang - packing the mules
One of the many peaks you can see from Bhimtang

Unnamed ImageBhimtang to Tilje
Bhimtang to Tilje

Unnamed ImageBhimtang to Tilje
Bhimtang to Tilje

Unnamed ImageTilje to Jagat
Tilje to Jagat

Unnamed ImageTilje to Jagat
Tilje to Jagat

Unnamed ImageBesi Shahar
Besi Shahar

And finally, a short motion picture medley, with some interesting momentums of our trip.

Kathmandu again

As we had finished the circuit one day earlier than we planned, we had an extra day in Kathmandu to buy the gifts for the relatives and friends and to roam a little more in the city. So we had the chance to ramble all around the Thamel district and to visit the Patan Durbar square in Lalitpur. This square is one of the three Durbar Squares in the Kathmandu Valley, all of which are UNESCO World Heritage Sites. One of its attraction is the ancient royal palace where the Malla Kings of Lalitpur resided.
The Durbar Square is a marvel of Newa architecture. The Square floor is tiled with red bricks. There are many temples and idols in the area. The main temples are aligned opposite of the western face of the palace. The entrance of the temples faces east, towards the palace. There is also a bell situated in the alignment beside the main temples. The Square also holds old Newari residential houses. There are various other temples and structures in and around Patan Durbar Square built by the Newa People.
Unfortunately the square was heavily damaged on 25 April 2015 by a huge earthquake.

Unnamed ImagePatan Durbar square
Patan Durbar square

Unnamed ImagePatan Durbar square
Patan Durbar square

Unnamed ImagePatan Durbar square
Patan Durbar square

Patan Durbar square
Patan Durbar square


Total days
Trekking days
Itineraries descriptionAltitude
1-Arrival in Kathmandu1400 m
Sightseeing in Kathmandu
1400 m
31Drive to Soti Khola via AruGhat600 m, 800 m
42Soti Khola to MacchaKhola1000 m
53Maccha Khola to Jagat1400 m
64Jagat to Bihi1860 m
75Bihi to Namrung2600 m
86Namrung to Samagaon trough Lho Bazar3100 m, 3500 m
97Rest day in Samagaon3500 m
108Samagaon to Samdo3800 m
119Samdo - rest day3800 m
1210Samdo to Larkya Phedy (Dharamshala)4460 m
1311Cross the pass and reach Bhimtang5106 m, 3700 m
1412Bhimtang to Tilje2100 m
13Tilje to Jagat and Jeep to Besi Shahar1300 m, 800 m
1614Besi Shahar to Kathmandu via public transportation1400 m
17-Departure to sweet home


Post a Comment
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Enkidu - Jan 21, 2017 11:46 pm - Voted 10/10

Very Nice

And great pics. Thanks for posting.

Viewing: 1-1 of 1



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