MAKALU CLIMATE CLIMB
Join the alpinist and climate change entrepreneur Carina Ahlqvist on her fifth expedition to 8000 meter mountains in the Himalayas. This high-altitude trek is a unique opportunity with an unparalleled mountain experience that journey through remote mountain villages with the purpose of researching and collection of data, specifically for climate change research.
Mount Makalu is the world's fifth highest mountain, standing at 8 481 meters, located 20 km southeast of Mount Everest on the borders of Nepal and China. Carina will, as the first Swedish woman, make an attempt to summit the mountain. You will have the opportunity to follow the trek to Makalu base camp, at 4 800 metres, where Carina with a sherpa, will then proceed towards the summit. This trek is an exotic alternative to the tourist trail that climbs towards Mount Everest Base Camp. The Makalu trail offers a variety of lush flowering rhododendrons, waterfalls and high-gloss glaciers. It is here one can experience the true life of a base camp with alpinists who acclimatize themselves for the climb towards the summit.
During the trek to Makalu base camp, we will take photographs and collect rock samples from landslides along the way. The stone samples will provide invaluable physical research material for a NASA funded project that is in collaboration with the Planetary Science Institute (PSI) in Arizona, USA to help scientists understand the process of climate change.
Snow samples near the base camp will be collected for researchers at the European Space Agency (ESA). This will be used to complement historical satellite data along with the new soil samples for climate change studies. There is no experience requirement as instructions for collecting samples will be provided along the trek.
In collaboration with The Himalayan Stove Project, our journey will visit traditional mountain villages and homes in the area, to monitor how climate-friendly cookers are installed in practice. The Himalayan Stove Project is a non-profit driving initiative that since 2009 has installed over 4000 climate-friendly stoves in Nepal. The smoke is typically directed outdoors through chimney pipes, this design improves public health. The design of the stove reduces the need for fuel by up to 80 percent, which in turn reduces the need for firewood, leading to less deforestation and CO2 release.
Carina Ahlqvist has experience from four 8,000-meter expeditions; twice to Mount Manaslu (8167 meters) in Nepal, Mount Cho Oyu (8201 meters) and Mount Shishapangma (8 027 meters) in Tibet. Whilst she is not a scientist, she is experienced in collecting samples for climate scientists at NASA California, NASA New York, Arizona-, Mexico- and Central Washington University. Carina has also collected samples for micro plastic research and initiated projects with Nepalese women to organise high-altitude clean-up in the mountains. Carina is at occasions working as a mountain guide, summer 2017 to Europe's highest mountain Elbrus 5 642 meters.
By following the trek and it´s aims, you are sponsoring Carina and the expedition, for which we thank you. All sponsorship goes towards the Makalu Climate Climb initiative, we at Pathfinder will only take a booking fee of 500 SEK per participant.
Join a unique climate trek. No one can do everything, but everyone can do something.
Welcome to the Makalu Climate Climb!
The trip day for day
Day 1. Arrival in Kathmandu
Once you arrive at the Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu, you will see Mountain Delights’ representative waiting for you just outside the arrival deck. You will see either our company signboard or a placard with your name printed on it. You will be taken to the trip hotel where you check in and relax for some time. Later we will take you for a short tour of Thamel, the main tourist hub in Kathmandu, to show you some good restaurants, ATMs, money changer and other necessary places you might need to go. We go back to hotel after the tour and talk about the trip in details. If your arrival is late today, we will do this tour and trip briefing tomorrow before we start for the tour.
Day 2. Sightseeing in Kathmandu
We will take you for a historical and heritage tour of Kathmandu valley today after breakfast. A full day sightseeing today in Kathmandu takes you to the amazing heritage sites of
Boudhanath is considered as the biggest Buddhist Stupa in the world which lies in the middle of a beautiful square. The giant Buddhist shrine is a very important pilgrimage site for Tibetan Buddhist people. The stupa is considered to have been built in 4th/5th centuries and carries some interesting stories behind its establishment. A stupa is basically a relic monument considered as a sacred shrine in Buddhism but there are several other types of stupas other than relic stupas. A stupa symbolizes the journey of a human being from material world to the world of enlightenment.
Pashupatinath is a Hindu Temple area where you can see a very unique cremation culture for the Hindu dead people. The temple which is considered as the most important Shiva temple in Nepal is open for Hindus only thus non-Hindu people have to stay outside the temple premises observing the Hindu death rites and rituals. We can encounter some Sadhus, the holy men, around who look so fascinating for photographs. The place is a rich spiritual and cultural source to have an insight on Nepali life and rituals.
Day 3. Fly (Kathmandu) – Tumlingtar(400 m) 1 hrs – drive to Num (1505 m) 5 hrs/ camping.
We fly to Tumlingtar after breakfast and meet the some of the crew members who will also be joining us. Next, we drive to Num via Chichila , a small Gurung settlement. A moderately paced drive through the picturesque villages and lush mountain forests will take us to Num. A ridge line with great views on both side and perched on the end, this is Num for us. Overnight in Num.
Day 4. Num to Sindua (1530 m) 6/7 hrs and O/n at tented camp.
The trail today descends steeply through forests and a terraced farm takes us to Barun River. We cross the river and follow an equally steep ascent up the other side again. Often quite hot - the forest on the valleys offer a bit of shade. This is where Makalu Barun National Park begins and where we register our permits. The country is particularly rocky; tiny terraces planted with corn and barley, then we have tough steep climb to Sedua. We camp right at the top of the village. Overnight in Seduwa.
Day 5. Sindua to Tashi Gau (village) 2065 m, 5/6 hrs and O/n at tented camp.
Ascend the ridge bounded by the Ipsuwa Khola on the west and Kasuwa Khola to the east. Crossing the hillside through quiet villages and passing by small paddy fields, The trail crosses meadows and several streams, then climbs to the Sherpa village of Tashi Gaon, the last permanent settlement in the valley. we are surrounded by breathtaking Himalayan panorama. Overnight in Tashigaon.
Day 6. Tashi Gau to Kauma (3562 m) 6/7 hrs and O/n at tented camp.
A very hard day of the trek as the trail goes up real steep in higher elevation. We will ascend through forests to a stream and then onto a ridge. From here the trail gets even steeper and passes a Kharka (grazing land) and finally follows a series of rough stone stairs and small lakes ascending to the top of the ridge. We walk through the sparse forests along the ridge over a hillock and descend a bit to Kauma Overnight in Kauma.
Day 7. Kauma to Dobato (3650 m) 5/6 hrs and O/n at tented camp.
We again start today with a steep climb then through less steeply rhododendron forests to the top of the ridge. After the lake Kalo Pokhari (3930m), pass over the Keke La at 4,170m. We can see the marvelous views of Chamlang (7321m), Peak 6 (6,524m) and Peak 7 (6,758m). After crossing the Keke La pass, we descend through the beautiful valley. We descend through the beautiful valley to Dobate. Overnight in Dobate.
Day 8. Dobato to Yangle Kharka 3610 m) 5/6 hrs and O/n at tented camp.
Today the trail descends steep gully with a stream for about 500m. The trail is ill defined, rocky and sloppy mud in places as it leads up the glacial valley. We then take a pleasant walk, slowly gaining altitude until we arrive at Nehe Kharka. From here you can have good views of Peak 6. Nhe Kharka is located on a large open grassy plain at an elevation of 3000 m. from here you will have great mountain views, then take a pleasant walk, slowly gaining altitude until we arrive at Yangri Kharka situated at the base of the valley. Overnight at Yangri Kharka.Camp
Day 9. Yangle Kharka Rest (3610 m) and O/n at tented camp.
The day off will allow some bodily rest before we trek to Langmale kharka. This day we also collect samples from landslides. For those who wish to explore the nearby surrounding can walk around the area. Overnight in Yangle Kharka.
Day 11. Yangle Kharka to Langmame kharka (4400 m) 5/6 hrs and O/n at tented camp.
The trail today turns westward and leaves the rhododendron forests for alpine tundra. There are excellent views of Pyramid Peak (7168 m), Peak 4 (6720 m) etc. Langmale Kharka is at 4400 m a bit dangerous day as the altitude gains more than 1300 m but we don't have a choice because we do not have any suitable camp between Yangle Kharka and Langmale Kharka. We pass through yak pastures, lush forests and boulder fields. The valley walls tower imposingly above us during the start of the trek. We pass Merek as we make our way further up and notice a significant rise in the scenic Himalayan views. Overnight at camp.
Day 11. Langmale Kharka to Makalu Base camp (4870 m) 5/6 hrs and O/n at tented camp.
Today is a gradual climb to a minor pass about 400 m. The trail is flat with icy glaciers and snow clad mountains accompanying us. Mount Makalu comes into view as we approach Shershong. As we make our way to the camp, we get to soak in the majestic Himalayan panorama surrounding us. From here you will have magnificent south face views of Makalu also you will be able to see the complete panorama of Everest and Lhotse. Camp
Day 12. Explore Makalu Base Camp (4870 m) and O/n at tented camp.
The Base Camp is a rocky barren place with the large Barun Glacier beyond it. From here we can see the magnificent south face of Makalu and the complete panorama of Everest and Lhotse. We can explore the surrounding lakes, glaciers and go for a short trek up where we may celebrate our accomplishment at the camp itself. We also have a chance to take part in Carinas preparations for the climb. Overnight at Makalu Base Camp.
Day 13. Trek back to Yangle Kharka (3610 m) 6/7 hrs and O/n at tented camp.
We descend down from the base camp and take our last glimpse of Makalu before turning the corner and heading back. On our way down, we pass through Shershong, Langmale Kharka, Merek and descend down the valley finally stopping at Yangri Kharka. Overnight at Yangri Kharka.
Day 14. Yangle Kharka to Mumbuk (3550 m) 5/6 hrs and O/n at tented camp.
After breakfast at Yangri Kharka we descend through rock falls, green forests and valley, making our way towards Dobate. We follow the river banks of Barun as we descend down the trail. We begin the trek with steep climb from Dobate to Mumbuk (Nambuk) and through a forest of firs and rhododendrons. Overnight at Mumbuk.
Day 15. Mumbuk to Kauma (3562 m) 5/6 hrs and O/n at tented camp.
From Mumbuk, we walk through a forest of firs and rhododendrons. We then cross the Keke La, Tutu La (Shipton’s Pass) and Kauma La en route. Next, we descend to Kauma again. Overnight in Kauma.
Day 16. Kauma to Seduwa (1530 m) 6/7 hrs and O/n at tented camp.
The trek continues with frequent long and steep descent cutting through the hillsides. The trail takes us through thick forests and finally making it to the indigenous Sherpa village of Tashigaon. We retrace our steps as we exit the Makalu Barun National Park and descend down to the Barun River. We then cross the hillside and come across villages and settlements as we move further down finally stopping at Seduwa again. Overnight at Seduwa.
Day 17. Seduwa to Num (1505 m) 5/6 hrs and O/n at tented camp.
We leave Seduwa and trek through lush forests towards Num. The trail goes up and down and passes through dense forests and Sherpa villages as we move downwards. Overnight at Num.
Day 18. Num to Tumlingtar Drive 5 Hrs and O/n at local lodge
Again we take a bus or jeep to Tumlingtar . The final day of our trip. Ready for an early departure to Kathmandu the following day. Overnight at Tumlingtar.
Day 19. Fly back Tumlingtar to Kathmandu.
Today, we fly back to Kathmandu after our long trek in the mountains. We can rest and relax throughout the day at our hotel or get in touch with our loved ones. In the evening we celebrate our successful journey to the Makalu base camp and back with a farewell dinner. Overnight in Kathmandu.
Day 20. Love Kathmandu Tour
Walk with us around the local town in Kathmandu to experience the local life and culture. If you are looking for the theme-based walking tour in the center of the Kathmandu valley, the tour lets you a great opportunity to experience historical, cultural and spiritual affluence to unveil the social and historical mysteries. Bustling city, to view the artistic Kathmandu Sightseeing Tour bequeaths you an opportunity to capture the snaps of the centuries old monuments and historical crafts in the Kathmandu city. On this walking tour, we explore the Local market of Ason, glass beads market at Indrachowk, oldest supermarket at New Road, Kilagal, and Hidden Stupa etc.
After exploring these hidden charms of Kathmandu, we walk to Kathmandu Durbar Square. It is famous for its unique historical, cultural and religious traditions. The most unique experience in the square is the visit to the temple of living goddess “Kumari”. Durbar square walking tour will be a perfect mixture of culture, history, art, architecture and traditional values prevalent in Kathmandu valley.