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Mera Peak & Island Peak climbing via Amphu Laptsa Pass

Trip Introduction


Mera and Island Peak Climbing Via Amphu Laptsa Pass
Mera Peak & Island Peak via Amphu Laptsa Pass (5700m) is the ultimate trekking and climbing challenge in the Himalaya of Nepal. Even reaching the top of one of these fantastic Peaks is a great achievement. This trip includes two 6000m + peaks and one challenging high pass. This exceptional high altitude adventure is packed with an amazing variety of mountains and wilderness valleys, forests and grasslands, lodges and camping; a complete Khumbu experience.
Even though the majority of this expedition is straight forward trekking, it is graded strenuous, as it includes two incredible Peaks over 6100m. And one technically challenging pass, by seven consecutive nights at elevations over 5100m height. At this altitude, even very basic trails can be a test of endurance. The Mera Peak and Island Peak via Amphu Laptsa Pass expedition route have been carefully planned and paced. ‘Rest days’ allow time for the body to adjust to the altitude while you practice mountaineering skill with your guide to prepare you for the next objective.
This expedition starts with climbing the least technical, Mera Peak first, followed by the rather tricky Amphu Laptsa Pass and then a moderately difficult Island Peak, with its exposed summit.
Mera Peak, standing at 6460m; is the highest trekking Peak in Nepal. Neither too steep nor technically difficult, Mera Peak is a great introductory climb to practice the basics of high altitude climbing skills. This route avoids the steep climb to Zatrwa La Pass by making a loop to the south through a beautiful untraveled part of the country and joins at Kothey, allowing time for gradual acclimatization. We fly to Lukla (2700m) and trek south to Chhuthanga the same day. We follow the Hinku river right up to the Mera Peak Base Camp, at the foot of Mera’s north face. The route to high camp goes via Mera La Pass. Only the last 30 or 40 meters to the summit require the use of fixed lines. From the summit you get magnificent views of the over 8000m mountains including Mt. Everest (88848m), Mt. Lhotse (8515m), Mt. Cho Oyu (8201m), Mt. Makalu (8463m), and  Mt. Kanchenjunga (8586m) to name a few.
Descending from the summit of Mera, the route turns east at the Mera La, into the Upper Hinku Valley. As we follow the valley northward, the rock face of Chamlang towers to the east, and Lhotse and Everest are visible directly in front of us. Once we reach the sacred Panch Pokhari Lakes, we are about to tackle the toughest objective of the expedition, the Amphu Laptsa Pass (5700m). The succession of ice steps up to the rocky crest call for a fixed-line. From the top, we have to make a 35-meter abseil to reach fixed lines for the next 300 meters of steep descent on snow and rock.
We re-enter the Khumbu which, after so many days in a wilderness, seems busier than before. We will set up a base camp in the Imja Valley, and prepare to summit Island Peak (6189m), which lies close to the imposing south face of Lhotse. After the summit, we descend the Everest Trail stopping in the Sherpa capital of Namche Bazaar before completing the circuit trek at Lukla.
We ascend Island Peak via the normal route, directly underneath the imposing southwest face of Lhotse, the fourth highest mountain in the world. Though lower in altitude than Mera Peak, Island Peak is slightly more challenging. The ascent involves an as easy scramble up to a rock ridge and then onto a glacier where fixed lines are used to climb the 45-degree snow slopes leading to the exposed summit ridge. The fabulous summit views include Lhotse, Nuptse, Mount Makalu, and Ama Dablam. We follow the Chhukung Valley and join the Everest Base Camp trail at Dingboche, one of many Sherpa settlements we pass through on our return to Lukla.
The best season for Mera and Island Peak Climbing is from March to May (spring) and from September to November (autumn). However, winter is also a great time to climb if you are well prepared for the cold weather. In the crisp and cold month of December, the views of the mountains are crystal clear and there are fewer tourists around. The duration of the Mera and Island peak Climb can be lengthened or shortened according to your preference. Annapurna foothills Treks and Expedition will arrange every detail of your Mera and Island Peak Expedition; lodge accommodation, food as well as all the necessary climbing and camping equipment during the trip.
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Group Size : Minimum 02 Pax Max - altitude : 6189 m / 20305 ft
Destination : Peak Climbing Fitness level : Challenging
Arrival : Kathmandu Departure from : Kathmandu
Meals : Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Accomodation : Double/Twin Sharing in Hotel/Lodge
Day 01: Arrival in Kathmandu (1400m/4593 ft.)
Day 02: Drive to Manthali (475m/1558ft)-4 Hrs, and flight to Lukla airport- 30 minutes
Day 03: Fly to Lukla & Trek to Chhuthanga (3450m/11,320 ft.), flight: 35 minutes, Trek: 3-4 Hrs
Day 04: Trek to Kharki Thang (4150m/13165 ft.), Duration: 4 Hrs
Day 05: Trek to Chhatra La (4600m/14720 ft.), Duration: 5-6 Hrs
Day 06: Trek to Kothe (3600m/11812 ft.), Duration: 5-6 Hrs
Day 07:  Trek to Thagnag (4350m/14272 ft.), Duration: 7 Hrs
Day 08: Trek to Khare (5025m/16486 ft.), Duration: 5 Hrs.
Day 09: acclimatization Day/ climbing practice near Khare (5025m/16486 ft.)
Day 10: Climb to Mera high camp (5750m/18865 ft.)
Day 11: Summit day and descend to Kongma Dingma (6476m/21241 ft.), Duration: 8-9 Hrs
Day 12: Reserve day for contingency (extra day)
Day 13: Kongma Dingma to Seto Pokhari (5035m/16519 ft.), via Hinku Valley
Day 14: Seto Pokhari to Amphu Lapcha Base Camp through the south (5650m/18536 ft.)
Day 15: Amphu Laptsa Base Camp to Island Peak Base Camp (4970m/16305 ft.)
Day 16: Pre climbing training and preparation day for the summit
Day 17: High camp to Island Peak (6189m/20305 ft.) & back to Base camp (4970m/16305 ft.)
Day 18: Contingency day (reserve/extra day)
Day 19: Island Peak Base Camp to Pangboche (3800m/12467 ft.)
Day 20: Pangboche to Namche Bazaar (3440m/11286 ft.)
Day 21: Namche Bazaar to Lukla (2700m/8858 ft.)
Day 22: Fly back to Kathmandu (1400m/4593 ft.)
Day 23: Final departure to home country
 

Day 01: Arrival in Kathmandu (1400m/4593 ft.)
Our airport representative will welcome you to Tribhuwan International Airport, Kathmandu upon your arrival. He/she will escort you to the respective hotel in a private vehicle. Your prior trip meeting will be scheduled for the very day at the Hotel before dinner. However, our airport representative will give you a brief idea about the second day’s schedule on your way to the hotel. During this meeting, we will introduce you to your leader/guide. Please do not hesitate to ask questions about your trek or anything that is related to your trip. To make you feel comfortable, we host a welcome dinner for you in a popular restaurant in the city where you can enjoy authentic Nepali meals along with cultural programs including ethnic dance and songs. And the night you will be spending at a hotel in Kathmandu.
Included: Bed & Breakfast                                                     
Day 02: Drive to Manthali (475m/1558ft)-4 Hrs, and flight to Lukla airport- 30 minutes
Today early in the morning we will take a tourist bus to Manthali. After 4 Hrs drive we will reach Manthali airport, most of the time flight will be canceled so if the flight cancels then we will stay overnight at Manthali or if the flight is on its schedule time then we will fly to Lukla airport.
Included: Bed, Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
 
Day 03: Fly to Lukla & Trek to Chhuthanga (3450m/11,320 ft.), flight: 35 minutes, Trek: 3-4 Hrs
Wake up early in the morning and get ready after taking light breakfast for Domestic flight to Lukla. It will be the scenic half an hour flight over the snowcapped mountains to one of the most electrifying high altitude airports, Lukla at an altitude 2900 m. your guides and porters will accompany you here for the trek. Hence, the trekking adventure kicks off. It will be an easy trek walking towards an east passing number of hamlets and wooden Yards taking you to a thick forest of silver fir, birch, pines, and rhododendron, you will make steady progress on a good trail, crossing ridges and streams up to “Kharka” the summer pasture used for grazing yaks. The whole area is called Chhuthanga where you are spending your night.
Included: Bed, Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
 
Day 04: Trek to Kharki Thang (4150m/13165 ft.), Duration: 4 Hrs
The trail crosses the Kalo Himal Ridge which separates the Khumbu from the Hinku valley. Further ahead, we transverse a comfortable path showcasing a cairned hutch on the ridge with a collection of prayer flags at an elevation of 4450m. En route, we may encounter yak herders. The views across the Dudh Koshi towards Karyolung and the Lumding Himal are very impressive and so is the view across the rolling foothills east of the Hinku valley. We will stay overnight at Kharki Thang tonight.
Included: Bed, Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
 
Day 05: Trek to Chhatra La (4600m/14720 ft.), Duration: 5-6 Hrs
Our trail begins the adventure trekking with a steep climb, to cross the Kalo Himal Ridge in the Nau Lekh range; which separates the Khumbu Valley with Hinku Valley. With a steep climb up to a ridge, you will see the flattering colorful flags and the spot is called Zatrwa La. Then, you will finally descend steeply to the Chhatra La. We will spend overnight at Mountain Lodge in Chhatra La.
Included: Bed, Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
 
Day 06: Trek to Kothe (3600m/11812 ft.), Duration: 5-6 Hrs
After breakfast, we start walking in a descending trail for a while, and then crossing few ridges, you will walk steeply descend to the Hinku River. Then, slightly ascending uphill will takes you to Kothey of Hinku valley. Here, you can see several seasonal lodges/teahouse for check-in. we will spend time exploring the local lifestyle. We will stay overnight at Kotey.
Included: Bed, Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
 
Day 07:  Trek to Thagnag (4350m/14272 ft.), Duration: 7 Hrs
Today, you will walk along the Ridge of Hinku River in the shadow of Mera Peak. In the west bank of Hinku Drangka, lies Gondishung, where you will take lunch and rest for a while. Gondishung is a summer herders’ settlements. From here, you will pass an ancient Gompa-Lungsumgba Gompa; consider being 200 years old. The tradition before heading from here is offering juniper incense to the shrine to ensure a successful ascending of Mera Peak. From here, just a short walk will take you to the Thagnag. It is pasture land for grazing Yak during summer. We will spend overnight at a local lodge in Thagnag.
Included: Bed, Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
 
Day 08: Trek to Khare (5025m/16486 ft.), Duration: 5 Hrs.
Today, you will move to the base camp of Mera Peak towards east following the lateral moraine of Dig Glacier to the pasture called Dig Kharka. From here, you can click the fabulous view of Charpate Himal. You will follow a rocky trail and the lateral moraine up to the snout of Hinku Nup and Shar Glaciers and then onwards, starts walking on the steeper trail until you reach to Khare for an overnight stay in a local lodge.
Included: Bed, Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
 
Day 09: acclimatization Day/ climbing practice near Khare (5025m/16486 ft.)
Today, you will engage in practicing ice climbing. After breakfast, get involved in preparing individual gear for ice climbing. Ice climbing depends on the season and availability of ice; hence, in case of unavailable, you can hike around and rest at camp. Meantime, walking just a couple of hours from Khare, you will reach a point from where you can enjoy the clear view of Mera La and the route up to the mountain. Here, you can practice ice climbing. Follow the instruction of guide and practice for a few hours in the glaciers. Then retrace back your to camp and make final preparation to summit Mera Peak.
Included: Bed, Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
 
Day 10: Climb to Mera high camp (5750m/18865 ft.)
You should be very much careful on your way to high camp. The trail can be hazardous if it has recently snowed, as there are a number of crevasses en-route. Making your way to the top of the rock band, which is marked by a large cairn, you will set up a high camp. It will be the final camp before ascending the peak. Let yourself refreshed with the outstanding view of mountain piercing the skyline. You will stay overnight at high camp.
Included: Bed, Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
 
Day 11: Summit day and descend to Kongma Dingma (6476m/21241 ft.), Duration: 8-9 Hrs
Here comes the most awaited day of the entire trip. Today, you are going to summit Mera Peak. And you should wake up early at around 2 o’clock and get ready with crampons and rope. From high camp, a well acclimatize group will summit the peak in 3-4 Hrs. Just reaching the Peak, you can see the magnificent view of Mt. Everest (8848m), Cho-Oyu (8201m), Lhotse (8516m), Makalu (8463m), Kanchenjunga (8586m), Nuptse (7855m), Lobuche (6145m), Chamlang (7319), and other mountains over 6 thousand meters. Taking some snap and enjoying the spectacular views of the snowline, you will retrace your journey back to Kongma Dingma after a while rest with some hot soup at high camp. We will stay overnight at Kongma Dingma.
Included: Bed, Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
 
Day 12: Reserve day for contingency (extra day)
There will no guarantee that we will have favorable weather on our planned day for the summit. Therefore, this day is set aside as a contingency in case we are unable to summit the Mera on the desired day due to bad weather conditions or any other unanticipated reason. However, if the trip goes smoothly, this day will not be required.
Included: Bed, Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
 
Day 13: Kongma Dingma to Seto Pokhari (5035m/16519 ft.), via Hinku Valley
 After a successful expedition to Mera Peak, we walk today through the remote valley of the upper Yak pastures of this. Throughout the route, we will enjoy panoramic views of the Himalayan valley. It is almost a shock to realize that the two majestic mountains we are heading straight towards are none other the Everest and Lhotse. We will stay overnight at Seto Pokhari.
Included: Bed, Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
 
Day 14: Seto Pokhari to Amphu Lapcha Base Camp through the south (5650m/18536 ft.)
Trek through the remote parts of high altitude Himalayas to reach Amphu Laptsa Base Camp. This route is off the beaten trail; rarely do we meet some other trekkers even in high touristic season. We steeply ascend just beyond white Lake, the first of a series of lakes that occupy the upper Hinku Basin. Experience the wilderness of the Hinku Valley. On the right is Chamlang (7321m) with hanging glaciers on its south-west and north-west faces, the Hinku is true mountain wilderness. We will stay overnight in Amphu Laptsa Base Camp.
Included: Bed, Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
 
Day 15: Amphu Laptsa Base Camp to Island Peak Base Camp (4970m/16305 ft.)
We cross the Amphu Laptsa La pass (5700m) then walk across the Amphu Laptsa Glacier. Lhotse Shar Glacier and Imja Glacier are nearby. We trail will be half circles the Imja Tsho Lake before walking on the main Island Peak Base Camp. We will stay overnight at Island Base Camp.
Included: Bed, Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
 
Day 16: Pre climbing training and preparation day for the summit
After breakfast, we begin pre-climb training. Our professional climbing guide will provide training on peak climbing techniques and the proper ways of using climbing gear such as the ice ax, climbing boots, and harness, crampons, ascender. The training will also include using ropes to go up and down. Although it is not required to have prior training for Island Peak Climbing, we believe that some training experience will increase your confidence and climbing skills to increase the chance of scaling the summit as well as to fully enjoy the experience. We can spend the rest of the day walking around or resting for the next day's big climb. We will stay overnight at Tented Camp.
Included: Bed, Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
 
Day 17: High camp to Island Peak (6189m/20305 ft.) & back to Base camp (4970m/16305 ft.)
Today is the big day you are looking for on the whole trip. We wake up around 11:30 pm and take hot tea/coffee and breakfast. After a short easy walk trail hit a steep climb to the high camp. After the high camp, we climb the rocky path than following the snow path to the summit glacier. The guide fixes a rope when where it is required. While climbing through the rocky and glacier path fixed rope and man rope both will be used for safety. There are two newly formed crevasses where will be using ladders to cross them. After enjoying summit views and taking breathtaking pictures we descend to the base camp. We will stay overnight at tented camp.
Included: Bed, Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
 
Day 18: Contingency day (reserve/extra day)
We have allocated an extra day as a spare day in case of a problem with the weather or acclimatization. We will stay in the tented camp...
Included: Bed, Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
 
Day 19: Island Peak Base Camp to Pangboche (3800m/12467 ft.)
We begin our descent to Pangboche after breakfast. We reach a sparse settlement Chhukung, Dingboche, and cross a bridge over the Imja Khola. Our trail passes through beautiful villages, grasslands and crosses several bridges before reaching Pangboche. There is an amazing viewpoint a little further from our trail at Dingboche. We will stay overnight at Pangboche.
Included: Bed, Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
 
Day 20: Pangboche to Namche Bazaar (3440m/11286 ft.)
After breakfast we walk to Namche via Tengboche, we can visit the Tengboche monastery. After we will visit the monastery in Tengboche trail follow steep descent and leads us back along the Dudh Koshi River. We keep a lookout for wildlife such as mountain goats, snow leopards, colorful pheasants, etc., while we pass through the forest by the trail. After passing a Chortens, we reach the army camp at of Namche Bazaar where we want to take a long last look back to Lhotse, the tip of Everest and Tengboche. We will stay overnight at Namche Bazaar.
Included: Bed, Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
 
Day 21: Namche Bazaar to Lukla (2700m/8858 ft.)
Today will be our last day on the trekking trails and it will be a long but rewarding day as we make a return down the Dudh Koshi valley. From this direction, the views will be entirely different. Eventually, we reach the large town of Lukla with the airport where tomorrow we will have a flight back to Kathmandu. We will stay overnight at Lukla's local lodge.
Included: Bed, Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
 
Day 22: Fly back to Kathmandu (1400m/4593 ft.)
The flights to Kathmandu are usually scheduled for the morning due to safety reasons. After reaching the capital city of Nepal, we have the rest of the day off to past the time as we please. We could take a rest in our hotel room or shop for souvenirs for your loved ones. We will stay overnight in Kathmandu.
Included: Bed & Breakfast
 
Day 23: Final departure to home country
We really hope that you have enjoyed the trekking holiday in Nepal’s majestic hills with us. You have nothing more to do but ready and excited about going back home. Therefore, you can provide your free time for last-minute shopping for souvenirs or gifts to your family, friends, or relatives for you until your departure flight, approximately 3 hours before your scheduled flight time. Our Swagat Holiday Treks & Expedition representative will accompany you by private vehicle to the international airport for your final departure home.
 


COST INCLUDE
  • Airport / Hotel / Airport pick up & drop off service by a private tourist vehicle. (for both international and domestic flights).
  • Welcome Dinner at Typical Nepalese Restaurant with a cultural dance show.
  • 2 Night standard twin-sharing accommodation in a hotel in Kathmandu including breakfast.
  • Basic guesthouse accommodation during the trek in mostly twin-share and occasionally dormitory-style rooms.
  • Three meals a day: Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner during the trekking.
  • A Highly experienced, Helpful, Knowledgeable, friendly, well-trained Government license holding English-speaking trekking guide.
  • We provide an assistant guide for walking with the group to support where necessary as per group size.
  • National Park entrance fee and Trekkers Information Management System (TIMS card).
  • The required number of local staff and porters to carry your luggage during the trek (We assign one porter for every two guests.)
  • Food, accommodation, insurance, equipment, and medicine for all staff.
  • Everest National Park permits and Khumbu permit for trekking.
  • Airfare from Kathmandu – Lukla - Kathmandu including airport departure tax in Kathmandu and Lukla airports.
  • Arrangement of emergency evacuation service (should have insurance for emergency evacuation and will be paid by your Travel Insurance Company).
  • All applicable government taxes, vat, tourist service charges as per Itinerary.
 COST EXCLUDE
  • Your Nepal Visa Fees (should bring small accurate fees in USD and 02 passport size photos)
  • All the International airfare to and from Kathmandu ( no need to pay departure tax for international flight)
  • Lunch and Dinner during staying in Kathmandu
  • Personal travel and Health insurance as well as insurance for helicopter evacuation
  • In case of extra night’s accommodation, Lunch and Dinner in the city due to early arrival or departure as well as early back/return from Mountain/Trekking(due to any reason) than the given time period of Itinerary. We can help you arrange extra nights’ accommodation.
  • Your personal expenses such as (soft beverages, confectionaries, laundries, phone calls, bar bills, Extra porter, etc.)
  • Extra baggage excess while flying to Lukla.
  • Medical expenses and trip cancellation.
  • Any other extended trips and accommodation.
  • Tips of the guide, porters, and driver as a token of appreciation.
     # Any other expenses or charges that are not mentioned in the “cost includes” list.

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Lukla Flight Notice:
As per the Civil Aviation Association of Nepal (CAAN) decision, flights to and from Lukla airport will be operated from Manthali airport, Ramechhap. The Civil aviation association of Nepal (CAAN) has acquainted that there is rapid accession of traffic blockage at Kathmandu Airport and the Lukla sector is believed to be the busiest domestic flights sectors of Nepal. Flight to Lukla is one of the most occupied flights during the trekking season in Nepal and to avoid the traffic congestion and minimize the workload of TIA, they’ve drawn a conclusion i.e. All the flights to and from Lukla are rerouted from Kathmandu Airport to Manthali Airport, Ramechhap.
The Chief of Tribhuwan International Airport (TIA), Raj Kumar Chhetri has informed that all the airlines have prepared for their morning flights to Lukla via Ramechhap. So, if you’ve already booked a trek to the Everest region with us, then make sure that you are prepared for a flight to Lukla via Ramechhap (Manthali airport) instead of Kathmandu. So, we would like to request all our admired guests who have confirmed trips in the Everest region to have this information updated: we’ve to drive to Manthali Airport from Kathmandu at 2 AM (approx.) to catch the flight from Manthali to Lukla. The 137 Kilometer drive will take us around 4-5 hours.
Another reliable and a bit expensive option is going for a helicopter upgrade and flying to Lukla straight from Kathmandu. The Kathmandu helipad area will not be affected and you can have Helicopter flight to Lukla from 6:30 am onwards. The upgrade could cost you a top-up of USD 350-500 per person depending on the payload and availability of the flights. If we have a group of 4-5 members then we can make it private Heli flight.

Equipment and Gears
  • Duffle Bag\Rucksack Bag\ Suitcase (We provide one complimentary Swagat Holiday Duffle Bag that is to be returned after the trip)
  • One pair of a walking stick
  • Trekking Shoes
  • Sports shoes or sandals
  • Sun Hat/Cap
  • Basic Medical Kits
  • Head Lamp
  • Hand Sanitizers
  • Trekking towels
  • Sunglasses (UV Protection)
  • Warm Hand gloves ( Inner & Outer)
  • Warm woolen cap
  • Warm fleece jacket or puffy jacket
  • Waterproof Gore-Tex layer
  • Pullover or warm sweeter
  • Raincoat
  • 5/6 pairs of good quality socks
  • 2\3 pairs of trekking trousers
  • 3\4 pairs of trekking shirts
  • 5\6 pairs of underwear( non-cotton preferred)
  • Water bottle
  • Good quality Sleeping Bag
  • Camera and Batteries
 

Trip Location Map