Kanchanjunga, at 8,586m, is the third-highest peak in the world and the second-highest in Nepal. It was first climbed by a British team in 1956. The peak consists of four summits. The west summit, Yalung Kang, is 8420m high and some people classify it as a separate 8000m Peak.
The first Westerner to explore Kanchanjunga was the British botanist JD Hooker, who visited the area twice in 1848 and 1849. Exploration of the Sikkim, side of the peak continued with both British and pundit explorers mapping and photographing until 1899. In that year a party led by Douglas fresh field made a circuit of Kanchanjunga and produced what is still one of the most authoritative maps of the region. Exploration continued, mostly from the Sikkim side, starting from Darjeeling in British India. One of the major contributors to Western knowledge about the region was Dr AM Kellas, who later died in Tibet during the approach of the 1921 Everest expedition.
German expeditions attacked the peak in 1929, 1930 and again in 1931, but none was successful. After the Sikkim was closed but Nepal was open. In 1955 a team led by Dr Charl as Evans approached the peak via the Yalung Glacier. The Japanese then took up the challenge and mounted expeditions in 1967, 1973 and 1974 when they climbed Yalung Kang. A German Expedition climbed Yalung Kang in 1975, and in Indian army team mounted the second successful expeditions to the main peak of Kanchanjunga.
Arrival in Kathmandu. You’ll meet Ramdung Expedition representative displaying your name at airport and you’ll be escort upto the hotel. After check in, you can either take a rest, hang around in the city, visit our office; it all depends upon your interests and condition. In the evening we will organize a "Welcome Dinner" at an excellent traditional Nepalese Restaurant where you will enjoy a Nepalese cultural program as well as a fine meal. O/N Hotel, Dinner (D)
These day we are busy for briefing about expedition, documentation, visa application, last minute shopping and preparation for departure to expedition. We’ll also introduce to our Nepali crew coming with you for expedition. Hotel. BLD
Depending upon the schedule time our staff will pick you up from your hotel. Then you will fly first from Kathmandu to Biratnagar and to Suketar. O/N lodge (BLD)
We start our trek from today onwards walking downhill to Mitlung. The trails throughout the lower sections of the Kanchenjunga region pass through fertile valleys with beautiful pastures and small villages. We then cross Hangdewa River and walk alongside the raging Tamor River. As we gradually head in a northerly direction the trail steepens after a few hours before a final descent of 350 meters on a muddy trail to Mitlung. We spend the night there. O/N Camping (BLD)
The trail ascends and descends steadily as we make our way towards the village of Sinwa. We continue trekking downhill until we reach Tawa. At Tawa, we ascend to some heights and cross the suspension bridge at Thiwa. We pass beautiful rural landscape along the way and reach Chirwa, a beautiful Limbu village with few lodges, tea shops etc. O/N Camping (BLD)
The trek from Chirwa to Sukathum passes through varied landscapes such as cardamom fields and dense forests. We trek uphill for sometime then descend to the lush green fields below and continue trekking along the Tamor River passing through a dense forest. It’s both uphill and downhill trek until crossing the Ghunsa River after which we reach Sukathum. O/N Camping (BLD)
Trekking from Sukathum to Amjilosa is challenging. After crossing the suspension bridge outside Sukathum we enter a dense forest, ascend the steep trail, descend and cross the river again. We also climb a gorge from the bottoma and pass by Solima village and descend again to the level of the river. All in all, this day’s trekking is rather tough. Therefore, it is advisable to be very careful especially while walking the trail that passes the gorge. We later follow a tricky trail which goes both uphill and downhill until reaching Amjilosa. O/N Camping (BLD)
We start trekking from the river bank, pass through a densely forest of bamboo, fir and rhododendrons eventually reaching a small stone house by the river. We then climb uphill crossing a few small bridges along the way. Here, we get to enjoy the company of stunning waterfalls that originate from the mountains. After yet another short uphill walk we reach the Tibetan settlement to Gyabla. O/N Camping (BLD)
We descend down the river and notice the valley as it slowly opens up before reaching Phale, a Tibetan refugee settlement where it is possible to purchase handicrafts and homemade rugs from locals. After purchasing a few souvenirs we travel through conifer and pine forest and reach the Sherpa village of Ghunsa where we spend the night. This place is known for its hydroelectricity plant and the fact that more than 20 prominent conservationists met a tragic end in a helicopter crash. O/N Camping (BLD)
Today is rest day. We recommend you to stay active even in a rest day as it is better than being idle while on a trekking journey. Therefore, we take a short hike towards the Laspsan La monastery through the lush green forest. Come back to Ghunsa by afternoon and relax. O/N Camping (BLD)
From Ghunsa we trek further north along the river bank which presents us with magnificent mountain scenery. We pass through meadows full with beautiful wildflowers, rhododendron and pine forests. We cross a bridge at Rampuk Kharka, continue past the waterfall and cross the tricky section of the landslide. After crossing the landslide area we begin to see the spectacular view of Mt. Jannu. Further exploring and tackling the tricky mountain trail we finally arrive at Kambachen. O/N Camping (BLD)
We take yet another day for acclimatisation at Kambachen which is reserved to accommodate participants in high altitude and also to observe if anybody in the group has any symptoms of altitude sickness. The overall idea for this day is to relax- take a bath and/or explore the Nuphchu Khola Valley area. O/N Camping (BLD)
Today will be another challenging day and an early start is needed. We trek through rocky fields and large boulders on the hillside along the riverbank and arrive at a waterfall. We then cross a bridge to Ramtang monastery. We then come across a landslide section which we must pass through at a steady pace before descending to the river and finally arriving at Lhonak. O/N Camping (BLD)
We trek along the Kanchenjunga Glacier to spend a night at Pangpema, Kanchenjunga base camp on the north side. We urge you to be careful around the rockier sections as they are prone to landslides. After a short while you reach Pangpema, a flat grassy base camp. Climb a little higher and enjoy the splendor of Jannu, Kanchenjunga and Chang Himal.
Climbing period for Kanchenjunga begins now on. We do not provide a day-to-day itinerary for the climb period, as this will be determined by the expedition leader and members. Guides will take a flexible approach based on what fits with climbers’ and their own experience. Typically, the team will spend a few days at the base camp organizing food, practicing rope skills, and acclimatizing before moving above the base camp. From base camp, there will be 3 camps set up until you reach summit. Base camp is in comfortable position on rock and protected from winds. Make sure to acclimatize well before you start climbing higher altitude. Enough time needs to be allowed for bad weather and slow acclimatization. Summit push will be normally at the mid night. So that team reached at top early in the morning. Catch breathtaking sunrise and surrounding view then get back to base camp before getting affected by heat.
More descents through magnificent sections of forest as long as we make Amjilosa tomorrow. From Ghunsa an hour down we pass through Phole, a village in two parts. The upper section houses Tibetan refugees who are well established, the second is the winter village of Ghunsa. Further down is Yangswa, a great and warm camp. O/N Camping (B,L,D)
We pass through the beautiful forest opening out to steep, grassy hillsides where Amjilosa is perched. O/N Camping (B,L,D)
After short climb we begin the steep descent that will take most of the day. We reach the joining of the Tamur and Ghunsa Khola. O/N Camping (B,L,D)
We cross the Simbu Khola, which originates from Kanchenjunga's south base camp, the Khola that we followed up from Torontan. It is pleasantly warm at these low altitudes and cardamom grows freely in the moist shaded forest. Crossing numerous small tributary streams we reach Chhirwa, a village set among large boulders. We camp in a field out of the village. This is an easier day. O/N Camping (B,L,D)
Traversing in an out of minor valleys, we pass through a succession of picturesque villages on our way to Suketar, reaching around late afternoon. O/N Camping (B,L,D)
Enjoying your last glimpse of the mountains you have recently visited one last time on the 30-minute Scenic flight back to Kathmandu. O/N Hotel (B)
Today is full leisure day. You can either visit some World heritage sites in Kathmandu or do shopping of souvenirs and soon to take back to your home. Today evening, you’ll be join by Ramdung Expedition team and staff for wonderful farewell dinner at a typical Nepali restaurant. O/N Hotel (B,D)
The journey within the mountains of Nepal comes to an end today! There is nothing to do but we just trade emails to travel companions and organize our photos. If we have more time we can do some shopping or sightseeing. At last approximately 3 hours before our scheduled flight, a representative from Ramdung Expedition escorts us to the airport. On our way to home we will have plenty of time to plan our next adventure trip in the wonderful country of Nepal. (B)
Recommended tipping and Climbing Sherpa bonuses :