Best Of Langtang Gosaikunda & Helambu
The Langtang Gosainkund and Helambu trek in Langtang region is one of the most popular trekking destinations in Nepal due to its close proximity from Kathmandu and is to the north of the valley.Beside the views of beautiful landscape of the surrounding mountains, river and forest it offers a diverse ethnic and a cultural trek. Every year during Janai Purnima (Full Moon) in August, thousands of Hindu pilgrims come here to lake holy bathe in the lake. Gosainkund is a sacred lake for Hindus and Buddhists alike, and is said to have had its origin when Lord Shiva swallowed poison to save the world. It is believed he pierced the earth with his Trishul (trident) from where a fountain of water sprang forming a lake where the burning Shiva jumped to soothe the burning in his throat. There are 108 lakes in this region some of which are named Saraswati, Bhairav, Surya and Ganesh. Gosainkund is considered one of the holiest pilgrimage sites in Nepal. The best approach to Gosainkund is through Dhunche, 132 kilometers north-east of Kathmandu. It is a narrow valley that lies just south of the Tibet border and is sandwiched between the main Himalayan range to the north and slightly lower range of snowy peaks to the south. Langtang Lirung (7246 m) dominates the valley to the north; Gang Chhenpo (6388 m) and Naya Khangri (5846 m) lie to the south; and Dorjee Lakpa (6966m) protects the east end of the valley. The area was designated Nepal’s first Himalayan National Park in 1971 and use of firewood is strictly prohibited.
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Vacation Style Holiday Type
Activity Level Challenging
Min 2 Pax
-This high and isolated region is inhabited by Tamangs whose religious practices, language and dress are much more similar to those of Tibet than to the traditions of their cousins in the middle hills. A visit to Langtang offers an opportunity to explore villages, to climb small peaks and to visit glaciers at a comfortably low elevation.
Legend: According to legend, a lama following a runaway Yak discovered the valley. Hence the name ‘Lang ‘- Tibetan for Yak and ‘Tang’ (more correctly Dhang) means to follow. Yaks still live in the valley but they now share it with trekkers.
Trek Starting Point: Syabru Besi
Trek End Point: Sundarijal
Trek Duration: 12 nights / 13 days
Warning: Altitude Sickness
- Trekker Information Management System Card (TIMS) Card of USD 10 plus taxes per person
- Langtang National Park Fee of USD30.00 plus taxes per person
- Shivapuri National Park Fee USD2.5 per person.
Note : (All National parks and taxes are Subject to change without prior notice)
- Drive from Kathmandu to Syabrubesi (Pre Trek) in a private deluxe a/c vehicle accompanied by Trek leader + Sherpa Assistants
- Drive from Sundarijal to Kathamndu (Post Trek) in a private comfortable a/c vehicle accompanied by Trek leader + Sherpa Assistants
- 12 Nights / 13 Days trek inclusive of twin sharing accommodations at local tea houses / lodges with common baths (attached baths will be provided at Syabru Besi, Langtang, Sing Gompa and Chisopani), Meals (Dinner and breakfast) will be provided at the Lodges / Guesthouses and lunch will be provided at lodges / tea houses along the route.
- Services of a\n experienced and knowledgeable Trek Leader / Sirdar ably assisted by 2 Sherpa assistants who will assist clients / and ensure porter loads etc)
- Services of 4 Porters (for 8 clients) OR 5 Porters (for 10 clients) to carry clients personal belongings.
- taxes, tolls and entrance fees where applicable.
- Service fee for Sacred Summits (P) Ltd
- Nepal Visa (if applicable).
- Hotels in Kathmandu.
- Extra meals/ snack items/ alcoholic and non-alcoholic Beverages, aerated drinks, Mineral water and expenses of a personal nature such as bar bills, laundry, telephone calls etc.
- Personal Insurance for travel to Nepal.
- Emergency Rescue evacuation if needed.
- Personal Medical Supplies.
- Tips to trek staff and porters.
- Costs incurred due to cancellation of flights, strikes, landslides, etc due to unforeseen circumstances beyond the control of Sacred Summits (P) Ltd.
- Any item not mentioned in the above “The Cost includes”.
Drive from Kathmandu to Syabru Besi (1982 m) (6 ½ to 7hrs)
After a leisurely breakfast, board the waiting vehicle and drive towards Syabru Besi which takes around 5 ½ to 6 hrs. Hot lunch break will be arranged at a convenient spot on the drive en route.
Upon arrival at Syabru Besi, we check in to the lodge for the night.
Rest of the day is free to explore.
Dinner and overnight at the lodge in Syabru Besi
Trek from Syabru Besi to Lama Hotel (2380 m)
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Trek from Lama Hotel to Langtang Village (3500 m)
A day further on the forest peters out and you start getting the first tantalizing glimpses of snow-capped peaks. From the Lama Hotel the trail climbs steadily for an hours on the trail crosses to the north bank of the river and climbs steeply for an hour up through the Langtang gorge before the ascent eases and the valley widens out into an area of fir and rhododendron. Pass the Ghumna Chowk which has one hotel. Climb a short steep hill from the river path and soon arrive at Ghoretabela (3010m). At times the trail becomes very steep but only for short distances. Gradually the air becomes thinner and the climate colder.
At Ghoretabela (3010m) the trail leaves the forest and a spectacular view of Langtang Lirung (7246m appears. Ghoretabela was once a Tibetan resettlement camp but is now n army post. There are few good lodges where we’ll stop for hot lunch.
After Lunch, we continue up the valley, leaving the forests behind, the trail ascends steadily up to Langtang village, passing below a monastery about 30min beforehand. Langtang is an interesting Tibetan-style village with stone- walls enclosing houses and fields where you just might see your first yaks. The Langtang National Park headquarters is also located here. After Langtang, you can see a community of typical flat-roofed Tibetan houses and the valley flattens and broadens into open pasture. This is perfect for raising yaks, and you’ll see these imposing beasts everywhere.
Upon arrival at Langtang, we check in to one of the lodges for the night. Rest of the day is free
Dinner and overnight at the lodge in Langtang
Trek from Langtang Village to Kyanjin Gompa (3800 m) (4 hours)
Set out through the village and after a short climb arrive at a Chorten. From this point there is an amazingly long Mani stone wall which is truly a memorable sight. Continue along a gently sloping path atop terraced hills and after passing two villages the valley widens and becomes U – shaped. The trail enters a level, dry riverbed and after crossing the flow from the Lirung Glacier, visible on the left side are the Kim shun (6745m) and Yansa Tsenji (6543m). Cross an old lateral moraine and arrive at Kyanjin Gompa. Out here there is a Government rest house, cheese factory and a monastery. From Kyanjin, there are 180 degree views of the mountains at eye to eye level which is simply breathtaking.
PM: You have the option to rest amidst the mountain scenery or climb the northern flank of the Kyanjin RI (4773 m). From the top you can have a bird eye view of the valley below and the views of Langtang Lirung (7,245m) and the Ganesh Himal to the west and the Ganja la Himal to the south and a view of the pass crossing which leads to Helambu. Trek duration 3 ½ to 4 Hrs.
Dinner and overnight at the Lodge in Kyanjing Gompa
Excursion to Langshisa Kharka (4080 m) (7 hours)
Rest day for acclimatization, or have the option to trek to either to the foot of the Langtang Lirung glacier or to Langshisa glacier.
Full day excursion for Kyanjin Gompa / Langshisa Glacier / Kyanjin Gompa with packed lunch: From Kyanjin Gompa enter a wide alluvial delta. Cut across the gently undulating surface and cross a stream to arrive at an airstrip from which the entire outline of the Langtang Lirung can be appreciated. Pass the airstrip and follow the river as Langshisa RI (6427m) appears at the far end of the valley while the form of Gangchempo on the opposite bank is transformed.
Climb the rocky terraced hills from the river path and arrive at the stone huts of Jathang. Beyond Jathang, descend once more to the dry river bed an then return immediately to the terraced hills to see the terminal moraine of the Shalbachum Glacier pushing into the valley. Just before this moraine is Nubamatang with its five stone huts.
Cut across the grassy fields and climb the terminal moraines diagonally for a grand vista – Directly ahead in the wide mountain valley are Pemathang Karpo RI (6830m), Triangle and Pemathang ri. (6842m), to the right is Langshisa ri. Descend to Langshisa Kharka (4125m) for views of Kanshurum (6078m) and Urkinmang (6151m) at the far reaches of the Langshisa Glacier.
After lunch, return back to Kyanjing Gompa
Dinner and overnight the Lodge
Trek from Kyanjin Gompa to Bamboo (1960 m)
Since you’ll be acclimatized and will be descending, you should be able to reach Bamboo in a day’s walk (approx. 6 ½ to 7 hrs) from Kyanjin Gompa.
Dinner and overnight at the Lodge
Trek from Bamboo to Thulo Syabru (2600 m)
After breakfast, trek towards Thulo Syabru. The trek begins with a pleasant morning walk through the tropical forest and with a descent on an undulating trail, retracing our step on the main trail to Syabru Besi following on the high side bank of Langtang Khola (river) till you arrive at the teashops just at the foothills. Descend further to the river, cross on a wooden bridge then start to climb till the trail junction. From here take left side trail, the trail undulates for sometime and slowly begins to ascend and traverse across steep, sometime rough country. It is a delightful trail surrounded by beauty- exactly what trekking is about, and in the morning it is pleasantly shaded.
The trail continues to climb to a small lonely tea shop at the ridge, where one can make a brief stop before proceeding to Thulo Syabru. The trail traversesfor sometime, from here you can also have the glimpse of line of houses of Thulo Syabru which sits atop a prominent ridge far above. Descend down to the bridge cross over it then climb up to the village. The climb is through the scattered settlement, terraced farm lands and ultimately to a cluster of houses at Thulo Syabru at an elevation of 2200 m. upon arrival we check in to the lodge, once the room is allocated. One can get ready for the hot lunch.
Rest of the day at leisure or free to explore the village
Dinner and overnight at the Lodge.
Trek from Chhota (Thulo) Syabru to Shing Gompa (3250 m) (6 hours)
Once you leave behind the pleasant village of Syabru, climb past the gompa, school and army post, and switchback up the steep hill above the village. There are a few houses and potato fields steep trail and pleasant teashops in the settlement of Dursagang at 2550m.
The trail continues less steeply, now mostly in forests, past an old chorten to the top of the ridge and two shoddy tea shops at 3000m. Coming out of the forest, the trail climbs a bit more before reaching the top of the ridge. There is a view of Dhunche far below in the valley.
The trail continues across the head of a second valley, then reaches a final ridge at 3260m. The small Buddhist monastery of Sing Gompa is about 100m along the trail to the left. This is the main attraction at Chandan Bari, elevation 3250m. Because you’ll be crossing a 4610m pass, it is essential that you spend the rest of the day acclimatizing to the high elevation.
Dinner and overnight at the Lodge
Trek from Sing Gompa to Gosainkund (3920m)
Since we have done most of the climbing, the trail from Sing Gompa the trail becomes less sever but continues to climb over few the gently slops and ridge through beautiful forest of rhododendron and pine. From Shin Gompa the trail continues climbing steadily through rhododendron and pine forest with the Trishuli Khola far below. The trail crosses over to the Langtang side of the ridge you are climbing and stays in deep forest for a while, and then emerges onto a saddle at Cholang Patti (3380m) where a Coca Cola break awaits you.
When you embark on the trail again, a signpost in Nepali alerts you that you are now entering the Gosainkund protected area where the killing of animals, lighting of wood fires, and grazing of goats is prohibited. Be sure to carry plenty of water today since there are only a few places along the ridge where water is available. There are good views of Langtang Lirung from the north side of the ridge, and looking west, you can see the Mustang, Himalchuli, and Manaslu. It is even possible to see Tibet from here but at a distance. You cross high altitude summer pastures for sheep and goats before going back to the south side of the ridge overlooking the Trishuli Khola.
Laurebina Yak is a tiny settlement with two to three lodges at (3920 m) on a exposed ridge, the chilling wind from the surrounding mountains hits hard in this exposed ridge, so one has to be prepared. Here we stop for a hot lunch.
After lunchthe trek immediately begins with a steep climb up to the ridge where there is small temple a top with a statue of Sakyamuni, the trail somewhat levels and become less sever continue climbing on a gradual trail, as you past the ridges, the valley and the trail gradually becomes narrow, one has to be very careful as it is exposed area. The trail becomes difficult when there is snow fall or if raining so got to careful on this trail. After walking for about an hour you can see good views of the lakes, this also tell us that we are approaching towards Gosainkund. The first lake comes to the view is Saraswati Kund then followed by Bhairavkund and then finally the biggest lake of them all, the Gosainkund. Upon arrival we check in to the lodge for the night. Trek duration 4 ½ to 5 hrs.
Dinner and overnight at the Lodge
Trek from Gosainkund to Ghopte (3440m)
After leaving the hamlet of Gosaikund, walk along the northern bank of the river until we meet up with the trail leading to the pass. The climb may require two to three hours depending upon ones staying power. On the way there are many smaller lakes but the most significant one is the SurjaKund, as it is the largest as well as closest to the trail leading to the Laurebina pass. The Laurebina Pass at 4060 m,is at somewhat modest altitude for the Himalaya and presents no technical difficulties.
Cut across a rocky incline east of the guest house and climb a gentle slope between the lakes to Suryakund or Laurebina Pass (4640 m) strewn with cairns. From here descend a rocky incline and continue along a gentle slope into a wide valley.
Though the path is quite narrow it is impossible to lose the path and one soon arrives at a Kharka with several roofless stone huts. Just beyond this point the valley deepens into steep cliffs. Follow the up and down mountain path instead of entering the steep mountainside to the left and cross several tributary mountain streams. The slope eases and emerges to a slope covered with juniper shrubs. Pass a stone hut and then climb steeply on the mountain flank, cross a branch ridge and arrive at Ghopte (3430m) with its small bivouac cave.
(Note : If all goes well and have enough time on our hands, one can continue on to Tharepatti for overnight stay instead of Ghopte because but this extra stretch of trekking entails another 1 ½ – 2 hours of walking most of which is downhill and quite pleasant.)
Dinner and Overnight at the Lodge.
Trek from Ghopte to Kutumsang(2460m)
As you descend down the ridge fromGhopte, the trail continues up the ravines and across the boulders, then you make the final ascent to Tharepati at 3630 meters. The trail from Tharepati is all the way downhill till Sundarijal except for a few surprising ascents. From Tharepati it takes 5 hrs to reach Kutunsang and the path is mostly downhill. Duration of Trek 7 Hours.
Overnight and Overnight at Lodge,Kutumsang
Kutumsang to Chisapani (2181m)
From Kutumsang you can easily reach Chisapani in about 6 hours via Gulbhanjyang. The view from Chisapani is spectacular enough to justify a night here.
Dinner and Overnight at the Lodge at Chisopani.
Trek from Chisapani to Sundarijal (1350m) and drive back to Katmandu.
Following the ridgeline, the trail makes an ascent for about 45 minutes to bring one to the crest of the ridge. Then it descends through jungly country passing the deserted ruins of the BuryongBhanjyang Village where once a thriving village was located. Descend steeply further down for about an hour to arrive at the army camp and then continue to descend for another hour arriving at a large water project which supplies much of Katmandu’s drinking water in an immense pipe. From here it is about 30 minutes to the settlement of Sundarijal but entails walking on stone steps.
Arrive for a late lunch and later meet waiting vehicles for the 1 hour drive to Katmandu and drop at your hotel.
AFTER ARRIVAL IN KATHMANDU
- TREK BRIEFING:
On your arrival in Kathmandu, we will arrange to meet for a pre-trek briefing. Full information on all aspects of your trek, questions and doubts will be discussed. On trek your Sherpa leader (sirdar) will give you more details about the route, villages, people and other information regarding the trek.
Please bear in mind the domestic airline baggage weight restrictions when packing. In this matter we request you to try and limit your baggage to around 15 kgs. (about 35 lbs.). You may leave behind part of your luggage in your hotel or our locker room before the trek, in Kathmandu. All baggage are to be clearly marked and locked. Kindly refrain from carrying or wearing valuables on the trek. You may leave them behind at the safety deposit box at your hotel or with us.
- HOW TO PACK:
Your clothes and equipment should fall into the following 4 categories:
- What you are going to leave behind in Kathmandu.
- What you are going to wear on the trail.
- What you are going to carry in your day pack.
- What you would like the porters to carry for you.
Excess clothes and luggage can be stored in your hotel’s storeroom, and valuables in the safety deposit box. Please label your luggage and make sure to take a receipt from the front desk of your hotel for all the things you would like to leave behind while you are away.
- FOOD AND DRINKS:
On the trek the food will consist of the food available at the lodges. Menu will be available at the lodges and the guest will have a choice of the food they like. The water provided is pressure boiled. Water bottles may be filled at night so that you have cool water to drink the following day. Mineral water in bottles can be bought on many trek routes at an additional cost.
- YOUR STAFF ON THE TRIP:
Will consist of one English speaking Sirdar or Escort who will be wholly responsible for the execution of the trip once it hits the trail. Sherpa(s) and reliable porter(s) will assist him and the numbers vary according to the size of the group.
- WE WILL PROVIDE:
For persons who purchase the whole vacation package from us, we will also provide pick-up and drop at Kathmandu Airport, domestic surface / air transport, welcome drink and hotel in Kathmandu with American breakfast. The price of the trip does not include the hire of sleeping bags and down parkas, personal expenses like laundry and bar bills, tips and gratuities (Tips to staff).
- A TYPICAL DAY:
A normal day on trek would start at about 6:00 am with a wake up call and a cup of steaming tea or coffee served in your room, followed by a bowl of hot water for washing – also delivered outside your room. Breakfast will have to be ordered before one goes to bed and the breakfast will be served at the dining room (common) and we advise guests to pack their bags and leave it outside their room so that the Sherpa boys can load them on the porters baskets.
The morning part of the trip would begin after breakfast and last about three to four hours when a stop for lunch would be made. The afternoon part of the trip will be another two to three hours to camp Relax through the evening until dinner time. After dinner you have the choice of sharing yarns with your colleagues or fellow trekkers.
- SANITATION AND PERSONAL HYGIENE:
A latrine, which is usually outside the lodge, is the most common type of toilet all through out the trek. The toilets are very basic and no flush or running water is available in the toilets. The streams and rivers, and at times hot springs along the trail helps. However, there are a few tea – house / lodges that currently have attached bathrooms. Arrangements will be made to include tea – houses with attached baths where possible / available.
- DAILY WEAR:
Your Sherpa or guide/escort can help you plan your daily wear before each day’s walk. Please carry an extra shirt or a T-shirt and a light jacket in your backpack. The mountain air is cold, so you can keep dry and warm after sweats and chills.
- WHAT TO CARRY DURING THE TREK:
Your daypack, preferably waterproof should be light, small and comfortable. All small personal items like toilet paper, water bottle, medicines, extra shirt, light warm wears, rain gear, gloves etc., that may be needed for the days trek should be packed. Your duffel will be carried by porters who may not be with you at all times.
- GENERAL MATTERS:
Your personal belongings will be looked after by our staff so please help them by not leaving them unattended in villages and other public places. The common dinning room has a fire place which is usually lit at round 5:00 pm.
We do not want to add to the large scale deforestation problem in the country. You will find the Nepalese people friendly, charming, inquisitive and quite ignorant about the west. We request you to maintain and follow the local customs.
Handouts by trekkers has led to increase begging especially among village children, affecting their independent-spirited nature. As dental hygiene is a big problem no chocolate and sweets for the children, please. The Sherpa or leader/Escort can advise you if you are keen to help locally.
- MONEY ON TREK:
You may want to buy drinks at wayside shops and souvenirs from the natives. Small change should be carried. As customary, we can help discuss in detail in the pre-trek briefing.
WHAT TO WEAR:
Light clothing are only for short treks up to seven days at altitudes up to 6000ft (1830m) during fall (autumn) from September to November and in spring between March to May. The other months at all altitudes will be cold and at most times the temperatures will be below zero.
You will need hiking boots with ankle support, sneakers for flat trails and flip-flops or chappals for use around the camp / guest house.
Shirts, T-shirts (4), blouse, etc., for day wear and a woolen shirt for evenings.
MEN: Shorts, cotton trousers, jeans, sweat-pant (recommended) etc.
LADIES: Shorts (not too short), long skirts are acceptable in well trekked areas,
jeans or trousers if preferred. Sweat pants are recommended.
Undergarments & Socks:
Thermal underwear and inner trouser for the above 7,000 ft. treks. Thick trek socks.
A light sweater, a windcheater or light lined/padded jacket and down jacket or parka for above 7000 ft. treks. Woolen thick cap and warm gloves.
Sun / Rain:
Rain gear or umbrella and a sun hat is essential. Global warming has led to freak weather conditions and it has become more and more difficult to predict weather conditions.
Note: Umbrellas are cheap and easily available in Kathmandu.
HOW TO PACK
In The Day Pack: In The Duffel Bag:
Sun glasses Towels
Moisturizing/Sun screen lotion Flash light
Prescribed medicines Spare batteries
Camera and spare film Toiletries
Binoculars-optional Washing soap
Reading Reference book/Note book Spare clothes all wrapped in plastic bags
For most treks from mid-November till mid-February and for those above 10,000 ft./3000m., in Spring and Autumn, anti-dazzle glasses or goggles with side attachments are recommended and High altitude food supplements (favorite snacks) if necessary.
Although Sacred Summits (P) Ltd. provides sleeping bags on request for a nominal fee, it is best to bring your own if you wish. You may have your sleeping bags checked during the pre-trek briefing to make sure that it is the right one for the trek you will be going on.
In the event of an accident or serious ailment on a trek, helicopter evacuation can be arranged. The helicopter fare with 10% service charge and the hospital/medical charge will have to be cleared before departing from Kathmandu. A risk, release and guarantee form has to be signed before leaving on a trek with us. It is advisable to leave behind approximately US$ 1000.00 for an emergency back up measure.
We strongly recommend you to take a comprehensive holiday insurance in your own country covering adventures involving some elements of risk. However there is now, a few insurance companies providing insurance to foreigners travelers visiting Nepal.
Trekking in the Nepal Himalayas by Stan Armington published by the Lonely Planets books provides you a comprehensive information on all matters regarding trekking in Nepal
The Trekking Peaks of Nepal by Bill O’Connor published by Crow Wood press in U.K. provides you with information on all matters regarding climbing peaks in Nepal.
Trekking in Nepal by Toru Nakano published by Allied Publishers gives you some insight into some important trekking areas in Nepal. A map of Nepal is enclosed in the book.