Not long now until Steffi, Sonia and I head off to Nepal. Time for final prep, and the final prep post!
Having checked at the Surgery (and getting the info on my old vaccination log books added to their records), I’ve had a Typhoid top up and Japanese Encephalitis #1. J.E. is £100 per jab and annoyingly they didn’t mention that it is a two jab vaccination. Having read up about it, I’m sticking with #1 and a 40% protection, plus the usual “cover up / prevention is better than cure” approach.
Our “Kanch Trek” is 30 days KTM-KTM, plus 4-5 days either side in Kathmandu and we may spend a night or two at the Chhahari Retreat at the end (which may well entail “smarter stuff”), so I’ve had a look at my previous packing kitlists and photos for comparable treks – Mera Peak & Amphu Lapsta Pass 2019 (27 days KTM to KTM), Tsum & Manaslu 2018 (24 days KTM to POK) and Dolpo 2017 (25 days POK to POK + 6 days KTM & POK), and The Mountain Company’s Kanchenjunga BC to Tumlingtar GHT trek.
Packing is always a bit tricky as the itinerary is still a bit up in the air, which it usually is at this stage to be fair, partly due to UK-Nepal comms and partly due to the “known unknowns” of new roads and landslides / monsoon damage and how they all impact the trail.
The other factor is The Weather…
Links are to the same name locations on the map on yr.no (run by the Norwegian Meteorological Institute and NRK). Elevations are from our itinerary and then the yr.no place page. There is 100m – 300m difference for some of them which will make a big difference on the ground. Still, I imagine that we will be trekking through all the yr.no locations.
- Bhadrapur (91m)
- Mitlung (921m)
- Chirwa (1270m) / Chhiruwa (1304m)
- Sekathum (1660m) / Sekāthum (1502m)
- Amjilossa (2510m) / Amjilosa (2428m)
- Gybala (2730m) / Gybala (2748m)
- Ghunsā (3595m) / Ghunsā (3742m)
- Kambachen (4100m) / Khāṅpāchen (4467m)
- Lonak (4785m) / Lūnak (4680m) – cold!
- Pang Pema (5140m) / Rest Camp (5245m) is in roughly the right place
- Nango La (4820m) / Nā̃go Lā (4756m)
- Olangchungola / Olāṅchuṅgolā (3455m)
- Lumba Sumba Pass (5100m)/ Lumbā Sumbā Himāl (5365m)
- Thudam (3550m) / Thudam (3617m)
- Chyamtang (2250m) / Chyāmtāṅ (2249m)
- Hongon (2190m)
- Chepuwa / Chepuwā (2002m)
- Namse (2200m) / Namse (2034m)
- Gola / Golā (1510m)
- Num (1500m) / Num (1733m)
- Tumlingtar (285m) / Tumliṅṭār (421m) & Tumling Tar Airport (401m)
We need a 90 day Tourist Visa, and these days you complete the application online and take the acknowledgement with you to Kathmandu airport. It’s the same process for paying there (aka queue #1) but once you’re at immigration (aka queue #2) your visa gets printed out super quick and stuck into your passport. No hand written, lick ‘n’ stick ones any more…
Confusingly there are 3 different Official Online Locations to look at when doing the online visa….
- The Nepalese Gov website with info on Tourist Visas ($125 for 90 days)
- Their page with the advice pop up (copied/pasted below) – this is the only place that mentions the all-important “15 day” window.
- The Nepalese Online Tourist Visa Application page (where you fill out the form and, all being well get the “Approved” confirmation to print out and take with you)
There are, of course, any number of unofficial online locations too…..
I don’t usually write about the cost, but it’s $5000 for the trek, $350-$400 for tips, $TBC for Chhahari Retreat (depending how long we stay there) plus money for KTM meals and spends (never forget the felt animals!).
On trek we’ll need NPR to pay for fuel in lodges (if we want the stove lit) plus teas, treats and gompa offerings.
Flights and travel insurance have been purchased previously. Phew.
Right then: Time to pack!