01 January 2010

Dhaulagiri Circuit Oct 2006

Trekking around Dhaulagiri I, the 7th highest mountain in the world

This was a very different trek to our previous one in the Everest Region. That was a "tea-house trek", where you stay in little simple hotels where you can buy a meal and sleep in a private room with your sleeping bag on a bed. This time it was going to be an "expedition" where we would be camping each night. Whilst it can be done just on your own, carrying all your own stuff - which is what we have done all our bushwalking lives - most expedition treks will employ up to twenty staff to carry the many supplies needed for the two weeks. This greatly supports the people of Nepal, and gives porters better pay and conditions than those who otherwise schlep stuff into the highlands for the hotels. Yaks generally aren't used on the Dhaulagiri treks due to the occasional laddering needed!

MapFollowing the Myagdi Khola upstream from Beni, the first four days were in "lowlands" (~1000m), farms and rice paddies. Very hot.
Next 2 days were in wet jungle (partly used for raising buffalo, partly used for raising leeches).
Next three were spent climbing up through conifer forest to ~3500m and acclimatising in sub-alpine meadows.
Next three were spent on the Chhonbarang Glacier before climbing over French Col (5360m) to overnight in Hidden Valley (5100m).
Quick descent of two days to Marpha and Jomosom.
We were to fly out from Jomosom, but the flights were cancelled due to bad weather, so we compressed a four day walk into 1 1/2 days of marching and tractor/jeep transport down the Kali Gandaki valley to get back to Pokhara.

  1. Wed 27/9 Kathmandu -> Pokhara -> Beni (830m) Long day due to bus delay.
  2. Thu 28/9 -> Singa (850m) -> Babiyachaur (950m) Hot. Nice rice paddies.
  3. Fri 29/9 -> Dhandkharka -> Darbang (1180m) Hot.
  4. Sat 30/9 -> Naura Bhir (1449m) Hot with some big climbs/descents.
  5. Sun 1/10 -> Bagora (2080m) Also hot with some big climbs/descents. But short.
  6. Mon 2/10 -> Bainsikharka (Lapche Kharka 2310m) -> Dobang (2545m) Pretty jungle.
  7. Tue 3/10 -> Sallaghari (3107m) Pretty jungle, river, rain.
  8. Wed 4/10 -> Italian BC (3617m) At last some height!
  9. Thu 5/10 Rest Day (climb to over 4000m) And some more height!
  10. Fri 6/10 -> Japanese BC (4168m) And some more height.
  11. Sat 7/10 -> Dhaulagiri BC (4758m) Okay. Some more.
  12. Sun 8/10 -> Hidden Valley (5100m) MORE? (And freezing nights).
  13. Mon 9/10 -> Yak Kharka (4200m) At last going down again.
  14. Tue 10/10 -> Marpha (2680m) -> Jomsom (2750m) Back to fresh vegetables!
  15. Wed 11/10 Try to fly out
  16. Thu 12/10 Can't fly out Tractor/trailer -> Lete (2682m), Walk -> Rupse Chhahara (1560m) Gee we can walk fast.
  17. Fri 13/10 Walk -> Tiplyang (1040m), Jeep -> Galeswor, Bus -> Pokhara
  18. Sat 14/10 POK -> KTM

As seen on Andrew Purdam's Bushwalking Treasure Box blog.

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