Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Venturing to New Heights

Tomorrow morning I will be boarding a plane at YVR airport and embarking on yet another journey. This time it's the Himalayan Mountains with my school's Social Justice 12 class. 

We will be spending a day in Hong Kong, the first week and a half in Kathmandu and then we'll catch a plane to Pokhara and trek along the Annapurna Sanctuary all the way up to the Annapurna Base Camp. It's an exiting but challenging adventure that I can't believe is already upon me. 

I've attached the itinerary below and a picture of the trek. I hope that you will check back here once or twice in the next month for a new blog post and some pictures of this amazing journey. 

Social Justice Nepal Trip 2015 - Annapurna Trek proposed itinerary - Updated Mar 3rd, 2015
(itinerary is subject to change at any time due to weather, trail conditions, health of participants.  Times, elevations are approximate; the walking day will include a stop for lunch)

Day 01:  Fri March 20 - Pokhara to Tikhedhunga (1,577 m): 1.5 h bus, 3-4 h walk
Drive from Pokhara to Birethanti; start trekking following Bhurungi Khola (river).  From there, the trail climbs steadily up the side of the valley to Hille at 1495m, then to Tikhedhunga at 1525m. This trail offers a short & relatively easy day, to adapt to the experience of trekking in Nepal.

Day 02: Sat March 21 - Tikhedhunga to Ghorepani (2,750 m): 6-7 h walk
Leaving Tikhedunga with steep climb to Ulleri village through rhododendron forest (which should be in bloom this time of the year).  Ulleri is a large Magar village at 2070m. Then the trail continues to ascend more gently, through fine forests of oak & rhododendron, towards Banthanti at 2250m, and Nangethanti at 2460m.  After an hour gentle walking from Nangethanti, we reach Ghorepani at 2775m.

Day 03: Sun March 22 - Ghorepani to Tadapani (2,590 m): 6 h walk
Hiking to Poonhill - back to Ghorepani, and trek to Tadapani.   Get up early in the morning, and go for a one hour hike to Poon Hill - superb views of the sunrise, and panoramic view of Himalayas, including Mt. Dhaulagiri, Mt. Annapurna South, Mt. Annapurna I, Mt. Machhapuchhre, and many more.  Return to hotel for hot breakfast, and continue walking to Tadapani.

Day 04: Mon March 23 - Tadapani to Chhomrong (2210 m): 5 h walk
An easy down to Kimrung Khola for lunch, ascend again to Chhomrong village, which lies at the base of Hiunchuli (6,441m).   Offers a close view of Annapurna and Macchhapucchhre.

Day 05: Tues March 24 - Chhomrong to Himalaya Hotel (2,873 m): 7 h walk
Forward to Kuldi Ghar for about 3 hours and down to the bank of Modi river, viewing thickets of bamboo at the bottom of the gorge. Pass by the pasture of Tomo and Panchen Barah; then climb up to Himalayan Hotel for overnight stay.

Day 06: Wed March 25 - Himalayan Hotel to Machhapuchhre Base Camp (3730 m): up to 6 h walk
Keeping on west bank of Modi Khola, follow more open valley to side of Machhapuchhre Base Camp: choice of staying to rest, or continuing another two hours to Annapurna Base Camp.  Descend to to Machhapuchhre Base Camp for overnight.

Day 07: Thur March 26 – Day hike to Annapurna Base Camp (4130 m): 4 h round trip
This is usually a rest day. However, glacial moraine, mountain views and other short hikes can be indulged in.  Walk to one of the biggest glaciers ( Annapurna Glacier ) is another possibility.

Day 08: Fri March 27 - Machhapuchhre Base Camp to Bamboo (2310 m): 6 h walk
Descend and follow the same way to a pleasant camp spot at Bamboo.

Day 09: Sat March 28 - Bamboo to Himalpani (Hot Spring) and Jhinudanda (1610 m): 4 h walk
Walk up to Chhomrong and further to Himalpani to enjoy hot spring water and stay overnight on the banks of the Modi river in Jhinudanda.

Day 10:  Sun March 29 – Jhinudanda to Ghandruk - development project exploration: 4 h walk
Walk to Ghandruk town to tour various ACAP projects; overnight in Ghandruk.

Day 11: Monday March 30 - Ghandrukto Pothana (1980 m): 6 h walk
Descend to Modi river and ascend to Landruk, a beautiful Gurung village; lunch at Tolkha and easy ascent to Deurali.   Overnight at Pothana.

Day 12: Tues March 31 - Pothana to Pokhara: 1 h walk, 1 h bus
Easy way down via Dhampus village to Phedi on foot, then one - hour drive to Pokhara

Return to Pokhara hotel for shower and lunch; free afternoon/rest.  Dinner at hotel.  Overnight in Pokhara.


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