Makalu Base Camp Trek is one of the most popular among adventure seekers. Trekking to Makalu Base Camp offers an exceptional opportunity to explore high-altitude terrains, snow-bound landscapes and encountering with ethnic Himalayan people. The trail follows through the Makalu Barun National Park & Conservation Area which is replete with pristine forests, alpine meadows & endangered wild life of Makalu region. While trekking, we experience a wide diversity of ecosystems and different ethnic cultures and traditions at various places where we tread on. In addition, we rejoice with the spectacular sights of Mount Everest, Mount Makalu, Mount Lhotse & Mount Chhamlang. The Makalu Barun Valley inhabits very few people.. Very few foreign trekkers visit this area due to remote wilderness & inaccessibility. Trekking to Makalu Base Camp is an unforgettable experience for those wanting a true adventure in Nepal.
The journey to Makalu Base Camp begins with an hour-long flight to Tumlingtar where from we start trek to Chichila. The lower reaches of the trail are renowned for its lushness with verdant rhododendron forests whereas the upper reaches of the trail comprises of polished granite cliffs capped by hanging glaciers, overflowing with waterfalls. The 22-day Makalu Base Camp Trek is an ideal choice for avid trekkers and nature enthusiasts who seek solace and tranquility in pristine natural habitat and those who wish to avoid crowds.
The itinerary for Makalu Base Camp has been carefully planned to allow trekkers for proper acclimatization to the high altitude, and sufficient time in the area of “low” base camp for further exploration to high base camp at the foot of the Chago Glacier, and for those who wish, a climb to a view point at the elevation of 6170m.
For passionate trekkers and nature- lovers who desire to keep away from crowds and seek peace and solitariness in pristine natural habitat, Makalu Base Camp Trekking is highly recommended.
The trek to Makalu base camp is one of the most remote and unfrequented areas in Nepal. The trail goes along the Arun Kosi and Barun Valley, protected as Nepal’s newest national park. A rough trail leads past yak pastures and glaciers to the foot of Makalu. You can make an outstanding trek in eastern Nepal from Tumlingtar by walking north up the Arun Kosi to Sedua and Num, into the upper Barun Khola valley for a close look at Makalu and Chhamlang. The trek to Makalu base camp is one of the most remote and unfrequented areas in Nepal.
Arrive at the Tribhuwan international airport where you will be welcomed by Trek Himalaya representative and transferred to your Pre-booked hotel. The rest of the afternoon is free until evening when you’ll enjoy a welcome dinner with your guide for the trek. Overnight in Kathmandu.
Your guide will meet you at your hotel in the morning to begin your city tour of Kathmandu. You will visit the Boudhanath temple, the largest Buddhist stupa in Nepal, Pashupatinath, a Hindu pilgrimage site, and possibly view cremation ceremonies along the banks of the Bagmati River. Continue on to Patan Durbar Square to take in ancient Nepalese architecture and end your tour with a lunch. After that you will view ancient Nepalese art in the Patan museum. Overnight in Kathmandu
We take an hour flight from Kathmandu to Tumlingtar, from where our trek commences. From Tumlingtar, we walk north towards Khandbari after lunch. We begin walking on a plateau for about 45 minutes after which the trek starts climbing gradually for approx 3 hrs to reach Khandbari camp above the village on large grassy fields.
Leaving Khandbari, continuing along the trail which passes a ridge, we walk a short distance to reach the settlement of Mani Bhanjyang (1100 m). We continue through fields, bamboo groves, big rocks and climb a short distance to reach the Tamang village of Bhotebas (1740m). Beyond the village, the cultivated fields disappear as the trail climbs through trees to a pass at 1850 meters that offers spectacular views of Chamlang, Makalu and Jaljale Himal. We then descend a bit to the next ridge, and then follow the crest as it makes some ups and downs through a rhododendron forest to Chilchela (1830m), with a tea shop and few houses inhabited by Gurungs. Overnight at camp.
From Fururu, we move back to the ridge at 1960 meters and trek through forests of huge rhododendrons just below the ridge line to a mani wall and a dirty pond. We continue along the ridge past a small stream to a single Sherpa house and tea shop. This is Mure, a spread-out village at 1980 meters that is inhabited by both Sherpas and Rais. Below Mure, the route cuts across the ridge, then makes a tedious descent on a rocky eroded trail to some stone steps and a final walk to Num (1490m). Num is situated on the ridge above an S-shaped bend in the Arun River. On the opposite side of the Arun is the village of Sedua.
We continue along the trail descending steeply from Num through the corn fields of Lumbang. Below the village the trail drops very steeply through a jungle to a suspension bridge over the Arun River (660 m). From the bridge we climb steeply to a primitive tea shop, then through corn and buckwheat field. Moving along the rocky path and tiny terraces planted with corn and barley, we make a long, steep, rough climb to Sedua (1460m).
Leaving Sedua, we make a gradual climb high above the Kasuwa Khola to Gyang (1770m). Climbing past the school at Gyang, it is a gentle walk through terraced fields and forested areas to Hindrungma village, and on to Rupisa. En route, we cross meadows and several streams, and then climb to the Sherpa village of Tashi Gaon, the last permanent settlement in the valley.
We climb over the ridge and ascend through forests to a stream and onto a ridge where there is a small campsite. The trail levels out, and then climbs to a shepherd’s hut called Chipla atop another ridge. We climb past two small streams, then switchback up the ridge in forests to a kharka at 2900 meters and up to a saddle and Unshisha, a tiny meadow at approx 330 meters. Here the trail joins the ridge that separates the Iswa and Kasuwa drainages. The slope gets steeper and becomes a series of moss-covered stone stairs to Dhara Kharka, a meadow atop the ridge. We then move over a hillock and descend a bit to reach Kauma (3470 m).
Rest / Exploration day at Kauma. Camp
Today leaving Kauma, we climb on steep switchbacks for a while. We then climb less steeply through rhododendron forests to the top of the ridge, with a large mani wall adorned with prayer flags. From here, we get superb views of Chamlang, Peak 6 and Peak 7.
Following the ridge for a while, we ascend a stone staircase. After a few false summits the trail veers left off the crest to a small lake. We then climb gently up a shallow rocky gully to the Kike La (4127 m). From the pass, we descend to another lake, then ascend steeply through large boulders to the Tutu La. We continue descending about 150 meters into sparse rhododendron forests to a level area. The final descent is through a forest of firs and rhododendrons to Mumbuk (3570 m). Mumbuk is a forest camp, on a grassy slope about 100 meters above a small stream, with views of snow peaks through the trees.
From Mumbuk, we descend a steep gully with a stream for about 500 meters. We then move left through fir forests, along the flank of the Barun Valley. Moving along ill-defined trail, we cross a 200-meter-long slide area, and then follow the river to a kharka. Moving through forests of birch and scrub rhododendron, we reach Yangle Kharka. We Climb from Yangle Kharka, finally crossing to the north side of the Barun Khola to reach Nhe Kharka (3000 m). There is a small gompa at the south side of the valley that offers great mountain views in all directions.
Beyond the Nhe Kharka, we follow the north bank of the Barun Khola for a while. We then cross a smallwo oden bridge before the river turns northward. The Barun Valley makes a huge S-shaped curve and the walls rise almost vertically 1500 to 2000 meters above the river, but the trail climbs gently as we approach Ripok Kharka. Still on the north side of the Barun, the trail turns westward and leaves therhod odendron forests for alpine tundra. Above Ripok Kharka, the route crosses a rocky crest with a few goths, and then ascends alongside a moraine formed by the Barun Glacier. There are excellent views of Pyramid Peak, Peak 4, Chamlang, Peak 3 and Peak 5, but Makalu is not yet visible. As we pass a ridge the glacier turns slightly north. We enter an alluvial valley and Makalu pops into view just before Sherson (4615 m). Sherson is somewhat sheltered, but still is a very cold spot. It is a long trek today of approx 8 hours.
From Sherson, we stay to the right in a gully on the east side of the valley. It is gradual descent to a minor pass about 100 meters above Makalu Base Camp. We then descend to a stream, cross on boulders to the base camp on the west bank of the river. From here we get terrific views of the south face of Makalu. The large buttress of the south face rises across from base camp. An ascent of this buttress yields views of Peak 6, 7 and Baruntse (7220 m); Everest and Lhotse complete the panorama.
Today is a rest day for acclimatization and exploration.
Today we retrace our steps down the Barun Valley towards Nhe Kharka.
From Nhe Kharka, we continue descending through the forests to Mumbuk. From here we get beautiful sunset views of Makalu and Chamlang.
Leaving Mumbuk, we trek across the Shipton La and descend to Kauma.
Today we make a long steep descent back to Tashi Gaon. At Tashi Gaon we spend the rest of the day relaxing in order to recover from the high altitude.
We descend the Kasuwa Khola Valley back to Sedua, then turn south down the west bank of the Arun River. From Sedua, we follow a trail that descends gently to Mulgaon, and then drop steeply on a rocky trail through fields of corn and barley to the Ipsuwa Khola, crossing it on a suspension bridge at 760 meters elevation.
The route now enters the hot bottom lands of the Arun Valley. Most of the settlements in this area are temporary settlements used by Rai and Chettri farmers who live in villages high on the hillside above. Passing the villages, we continue along the trail through rocky fields to Balung (760 m)
We continue through temporary farming settlements to the spread-out Rai village of Walung (880m). The trail descends to the Apsawa Khola and crossing it on a suspension bridge we climb steeply to Chhayang, a pleasant Rai village with an extensive bamboo-pipe water supply at 800 m.The trail then crosses a stream at 590m and makes some ups and downs to reach Parangbu, a delightful camping spot among rice fields on the banks of the Arun River. We continue through forests and pass several small streams to reach Pukuwa (550m)
The trail now follows a route through forests and some spectacular high and exposed narrow tracks as it climbs over rocky ridges. The route eventually enters a region of intense valley bottom cultivation, crosses a huge landslide and some more scrub jungle before descending to Tome (520 m).Below Tome, the Arun Valley becomes wider and more U shaped. The trail climbs over another ridge on a steep, narrow stairway of rock steps. From the top of the ridge at 530m, the trail descends to a delightful camp on the banks of the Sankhuwa Khola (370m), across from the Chhetri village
The trail traverses the fields of lower Bumling, then climbs over a ridge and descends to the Inkhuwa Khola, crossing it on a rickety wooden cantilever bridge. The trail follows the river downstream to its confluence with the Arun. It then follows the Arun downstream, crossing it on a large suspension bridge.Now following the east bank of the Arun, the route passes through Chyawabesi before making a short climb back to the Tumlingtar plateau. It is a few km of completely level walking to the airstrip.
Trip Notes tell you about the itinerary details and supplementary information of the relevant trip of Trek Himalayan. We have prepared specific trip notes adhering to fixed travel dates. Please check which travel dates suit you. If you find any trip notes missing or only partially received while sending to you by email, please bear with us. They will be there anytime soon.