Mera Peak Climbing and Amphu Lapcha Pass of 21 days is a combination of trekking and climbing adventure that takes you to the summit of Nepal's highest trekking peak. Climb Mera Peak and cross the Amphu Lapcha Pass in the wild Hongu valley. This once-in-a-lifetime adventure leads you to one of the least visited trails in the Everest region.
Starting from Lukla, you walk past the lush rhododendron forests of Hinku Valley and reach the snow-covered glaciers and ice lakes of Hongu Valley. En route, you climb Mera Peak and cross the formidable Amphu Lapcha Pass. Technical climbing is needed to cross this ice-covered pass.
For newbies who are keen to take up mountaineering, this is the ideal climbing adventure. You get to practice your climbing moves on Mera Peak as well as Amphu Lapcha. A Sherpa climbing guide with more than two decades of climbing experience will guide you up the mountain.
You return via the Dudh Koshi River valley stopping at traditional Sherpa villages en route. Throughout your journey, you will get to enjoy close-up views of 8,000 and 7,000-meter Himalayan peaks.
If you would like to climb only Mera Peak without Amphu Lapcha Pass, then our Mera Peak Climbing 18 days itinerary will be the best option for you.
|Day 1||Arrive in Kathmandu (1,400m/4,593ft) and Transfer to hotel|
|Day 2||Trip preparation in Kathmandu|
|Day 3||Fly to Lukla and trek to Paiya (2,730m/8,956ft) 5-6 hours trek|
|Day 4||Trek to Panggom (2,846m/9,337ft) 6-7 hours trek|
|Day 5||Trek to Ningsow (3,276m/10,748ft) 5-6 hours trek|
|Day 6||Trek to Chhatra Khola (2,800m/9,186ft) 4-5 hours trek|
|Day 7||Trek to Kothe (3,691m/12,109ft) 6-7 hours trek|
|Day 8||Trek to Thaknak (4,358m/14,297ft) 3-4 hours trek|
|Day 9||Trek to Khare (5,045m/16,486ft) 2-3 hours trek|
|Day 10||Acclimatization Day in Khare and Pre-Climb Training|
|Day 11||Trek to Mera High Camp (5,780m/18,958ft) 5-6 hours Trek|
|Day 12||Summit Mera Peak (6,461m/21,1907ft) and trek to Kongma Dingma (4850m/ 15,912ft):|
|Day 13||Contingency Day|
|Day 14||Rest Day at Kongma Dingma (4850m/ 15,912ft)|
|Day 15||Trek to Seto Pokhari (5035m/16,520ft) 5-6 hours trek|
|Day 16||Trek to Amphu Lapcha Base Camp South (5,650m/18,538ft) 5-6 hours trek|
|Day 17||Cross Amphu Lapcha (5,845m/19,177 ft) and trek to Chukkung (4,730m/15,519ft) 9-10 hours trek|
|Day 18||Trek to Namche (3,438m/11,280ft) 4-5 hours trek|
|Day 19||Trek to Lukla (2,800m/9,187ft) 6-7 hours trek|
|Day 20||Fly to Kathmandu (1,400m/4,593ft)|
|Day 21||Depart Kathmandu|
If you are looking for a challenging high altitude trekking and climbing adventure this Mera Peak Climbing and Amphu Lapcha Pass - 21 Days is for you. This Himalayan adventure takes you to a wild off-the-beaten track that regular trekkers find intimidating. The trail to Mera Peak leads you past the thinly populated Hinku Valley covered with virgin rhododendron and bamboo forests. You spend a night camping at Mera High Camp before summiting Mera Peak, Nepal's highest trekking peak.
It is an easy hike up the mountain. Only the last few meters to the summit requires technical climbing. Though the trail is easy the high altitude makes the climb difficult. Thin air and cold wind add to your troubles. Stunning views of five of the 14 highest peaks in the world- Mount Everest (8,848m), Kanchenjunga (8,586m), Lhotse (8,516m), Makalu (8,485m), and Cho Oyu (8,188m) can be enjoyed from Mera Peak.
After the summit, you trek to the Upper Hongku Valley crossing mesmerizing mountain lakes en route. You set up camp at Amphu Lapcha Base Camp South before climbing up the dramatic mountain pass covered with ice shelves and serac cliffs. The route up and down the pass is technical and you will be crossing it using fixed ropes, jumars, and ice axe. For experienced climbers, this is not difficult, but for novice climbers, the crossing can be daunting.
After crossing the pass you descend to Chukkung and hike down to Lukla via Namche and Phakding. The Dudh Koshi Valley is home to several traditional Sherpa settlements. Staying overnight at teahouses run by Sherpa families will give you a glimpse of Sherpa culture.
This adventure will also take you to the heart of two of Nepal's famous national parks – the Makalu Barun National Park and Sagarmatha National Park. These national parks are home to rare animals like the snow leopard, red panda, Himalayan tahr, Himalayan black bear, etc.
This trip is suitable for those who have trekked at high altitudes before. Climbing experience is not necessary but will be helpful. Basic knowledge of rope climbing is essential. Our climbing guides will also teach you how to abseil and rappel using ropes at the pre-climb training camp.
Accommodation will be arranged at local teahouses wherever available. At places where there are no teahouses, we will set up a tented camp. While camping the meals will be prepared by the local crew.
The best seasons for this adventure are spring and autumn when the sky remains clear and the weather pleasant. There is less snow on the mountains during these seasons which makes trekking and climbing easier.
If your plane lands during the day you will get to enjoy some amazing aerial views of the mountains and the valleys surrounding Kathmandu. Our representative will pick you up from the airport and drop you at your hotel. Check-in and take a rest.
Overnight at a hotel in Kathmandu.
There will be a meet up with your guide and other members of the team today. The guide will brief you on your climbing adventure and share some valuable tips, dos, and don'ts, etc. After the briefing, there will be a final gear and equipment check. Later you can explore Thamel or the local markets on your own. If you need some help you can ask us or the guide.
Overnight at a hotel in Kathmandu.
You take an early flight to Lukla. It is once in a lifetime experience to fly above some of the highest peaks in the world. The landing on the narrow runway on the top of a rocky cliff is thrilling as well as scary. At the airport, you meet the porters who will carry the heavy stuff. Sort out your luggage and start your trek.
Walk to the south of Lukla and take a downward trail to Surkey Village. From there you hike up to Chutok La, a mountain pass. You walk down briefly and arrive at the village of Paiya, your stop for the night.
Overnight at a teahouse in Paiya.
The trail to Panggom is dotted with traditional farms and thick forests of rhododendrons. En route, you walk across the Paiya Khola and ascend the Khari La. Make your way past pristine rhododendron and bamboo forests. Follow an up and down route till you arrive at Panggom, a Sherpa settlement.
Overnight at a teahouse in Panggom.
Leave Panggom and make your way towards Ningsow. You climb past virgin forests to Pankongma La (3,174m). After crossing the pass you exit the Dudh Koshi River Valley and enter the Hingku Valley. The trails along the Hinku and Kongu Valleys are the least visited trails in the Everest region. With fewer people on the route, you can enjoy a quiet walk.
Awesome views of Kongde, Numbur Himal, and Manju Peak mesmerize you. After some time we reach Ningsow, the rest stop for tonight.
Overnight at a teahouse in Ningsow.
Thick jungles and moss-covered paths line the trail. There are no human settlements en route. We choose an open shady spot to have our packed lunch. Later we continue with our journey and cross huge boulders with steps cut on it. Soon we reach Chhatra Khola, where we sleep overnight at one of the teahouses.
Overnight at a teahouse in Chhatra Khola.
We walk through the bio-diverse Makalu Barun National Park which is home to rare Himalayan mammals like the snow leopard, red panda, clouded leopard, musk deer, Himalayan tahr, etc. The pristine landscape of the Hinku Valley is enchanting. Though the walk is tough at times, it's pleasurable to walk on a secluded route. We follow an up and down trail till we reach Kothe.
Overnight at a teahouse in Kothe.
Trek up a trail that winds up through the Upper Hinku valley. The lush rhododendron forests disappear and yak pastures with grass stubble cover the landscape. We cross Gondishung and visit Lungsumgba Gompa, an ancient Buddhist shrine. The shrine lies beneath an enormous rock and the crew pay homage to deities by burning incense. Mera Peak, Charpati Himal, Thamserku, and Kusum Kanguru rise majestically in the background. After about an hour's walk, we reach Thaknak, a camp used by yak herders.
Overnight at a teahouse in Thaknak.
We walk past a stunning landscape today. It is a difficult walk but the views are awesome. We hike up to the Dig Glacier and the Charpati Tal, a picturesque mountain lake. Enticing views of Mera Peak, Kyeshar glacier, and Charpati Himal make us forget our difficult walk as we huff and puff down to Dig Kharka. Crossing the Hinku Nup and Lhotse Shar glaciers brings us finally to Khare or the Mera Peak Base Camp.
Overnight at a teahouse in Khare.
We spend a rest day acclimatizing and preparing ourselves for the summit push. The climbing guides will teach us the basics of mountaineering at the pre-climb training camp. There will be practice sessions on the proper use of a climbing harness, jumar, ice axe, carabiner, etc. You will get to try your abseiling and rappelling moves on a rocky slope.
If one is a novice climber, this class will be very helpful as you will be receiving climbing tips from some of the most experienced local climbers. The training session will be followed by a final gear and equipment check. Later the final packing for the summit push will be done.
Please do note climbing boots of size 12 and 12+ are not available in Nepal. If you wear boots of that size we recommend you bring your own climbing boots.
Overnight at a teahouse in Khare.
After breakfast, we hike up a rocky path to Mera La. We can view the three summits of Mera Peak – Mera North (6,476m), Mera Central (6,461m), and Mera South (6,065m). Our summit will be to the Mera Central. We traverse across the Mera Glacier to arrive at the Mera Peak High Camp. Up to this point, no technical climbing is involved.
At the high camp, the crew serves us hot drinks and refreshments. Sitting in our tents we enjoy views of five of the highest peaks in the world- Mount Everest (8,848m), Kanchenjunga (8,586m), Lhotse (8,516m), Makalu (8,485m), and Cho Oyu (8,188m). There are close up views of Chamlang (7,319m) and Baruntse (7,129m) too. For each climber, a single sleeping tent is provided. Nutritious meals will be prepared for the team by the local crew.
Overnight at a tented camp in Mera High Camp.
The summit push for Mera Peak begins at 2 AM. After having our breakfast, we leave our camp and head out in the darkness. Our headlights light the way as we rope up using a man-rope. After the group is secured we hike up. The glacier. In the initial phase, no technical climbing is required. The high altitude and extreme cold are the only two factors that make climbing difficult.
A steep incline at the last 40-50 meters to the summit is the most difficult section of the climb. We ascend the incline using a fixed rope and jumars and reach the summit latest by 9 or 10 AM. It is amazing to stand on the summit with Mount Everest (8848m), Lhotse (8516m), Makalu (8481m), Kanchenjunga (8586m), Cho Oyu (8201m), etc. soaring close to us.
We spend a couple of minutes at the summit savoring our victory and taking pictures. Later we descend via the same route. After reaching the Mera High Camp we rest for a while and have our meal. Later we walk down to Khare and take the trail radiating eastwards. We follow the path leading to Kongma Dingma, our stop for the night.
Overnight at a tented camp in Kongma Dingma.
A reserve day in case bad weather spoils our summit bid. This buffer day will also be useful in case our flight gets canceled or delayed or any unforeseen emergency leads to losing a day from our itinerary. If everything runs per schedule, you can utilize this day to explore villages en route or Kathmandu.
The ascent of Mera Peak will leave you physically drained. A rest day at Kongma Dingma will allow us to rest and recharge our internal batteries for the difficult crossing of Amphu Lapcha.
Overnight at a tented camp in Kongma Dingma.
The scenery is stunning as we walk past the yak pastures flanked by towering snowcapped peaks. We head towards Seto Pokhari ascending a snowy moraine. Overnight stay will be arranged at a teahouse near the beautiful Seto Pokhari, a glacial lake. Baruntse and Chamlang Himal look marvelous.
Overnight at a tented in Seto Pokhari.
Dramatic scenery enthralls us as we trek towards Amphu Lapcha Base Camp South. The sight of Mount Everest, the world's tallest mountain, and enchanting lakes along the Hongu basin keeps us mesmerized. We cross the Hongu Pokhari before finally arriving at the Amphu Lapcha Base Camp.
Overnight at Amphu Lapcha Base Camp.
Leaving the base camp you head along a snowy trail to the mountain pass of Amphu Lapcha. The Upper Hongu Valley is one of the wildest and harshest places in the Nepal Himalaya. The pass covered with serac cliffs and ice shelves is one of the most challenging mountain passes in the Himalayas. It requires technical climbing to get over the pass. You climb over the ice shelves which rise to about 20 feet. From the top one can enjoy incredible views of Mera Peak, Lhotse, Chamlang, and Hongu Basin before rappelling down a rocky cliff.
After you get to even ground you trek past the Imja Glacier and the Imja Valley. Enjoying splendid views of Island Peak you walk down to Chukkung, your stop for the night.
Overnight at a teahouse in Chukkung.
After breakfast, we leave Chukkung and descend to the village of Bibre. We cross the Imja River and head down to Namche, the commercial capital of the Sherpas. Once we reach the large settlement we head to a teahouse and enjoy a hot shower and good food.
Overnight at a teahouse in Namche.
The trek down to Lukla is filled with delightful sights. We cross several metal bridges including the Hillary Bridge, the highest bridge in the Everest region. Walk past the villages of Monjo and Phakding before arriving in Lukla. After dinner, you celebrate your achievement with your Sherpa crew.
Overnight at a teahouse in Lukla.
We leave the beloved mountains finally and fly to Kathmandu. On reaching the capital city, you check-in at your hotel. Later in the day, you can explore more of the city with a guide (book a half-day guided tour) or on your own. 'Ason' an ancient local bazaar lies close to Thamel.
Overnight at a hotel in Kathmandu.
Our representative will drop you at the airport 3 hours before your flight departs. Do get in touch with us if you feel inclined to discover more of the Himalayas.
Images: Nick Farr