The region that lies in the central part of Nepal and near or northern parts from Kathmandu includes famous areas – Gosaikunda, Helambu and Langtang that are magnificently mysterious, beautiful and explorative. Following trekking points fall on these areas. Details of other important trekking points in this region are already mentioned in the trekking itineraries on our websites –
Langtang (3480m) is a proper village with shingle roofs, traditional latticed windows and stone walls. The deep-sided cultural valley greets the visitors to see sunsets with Kangchenpo/Fluted Peak turning pink or occasionally crimson. Few other peaks are also spectacular from the valley. Around Langtang village, Mondo and Pablu kharkas remain energetic for scrambling up.
Bamboo/Langmoche Khola (1980) walls pitilessly tighten above you and the violent boulder-choked khola (stream) steepens to a death-to-kayakers grade. In the dappled shade the less optimistic could call the barely sunned gorge forbidding or gloomy, but with good hosts, warm fires and copious food it takes on a different perspective.
Ghoda Tabela/Qurpu-nesa/Tara (2950m) means horse grazing area, settling of Langtang and star respectively. Strangely no village name refers to the other striking feature around here-the incredible waterfalls.
LANGTANG NATIONAL PARK
The national park, established in 1971, was first of its kind in Nepal. The buffer zone, created in 1996, of the national park covers five kilometers area includes Syabru, Tarkeghyang and Sarmathang. The park straddles the Himalayan range and so encompasses diverse ecosystems from rainforest to alpine. It shelters snow leopard and at least two other endangered species – musk deer and red panda – which have already had specially protected reserves created for them.
The Kangja La (5122m), also spelt Ganja La, is the highest pass over the Jugal Range which can be interestingly trekked. The other pass is Gosaikunda’s Lauribina (4600m). The crossing is spectacularly alpine; you can literally touch the glacier ice and a bit of scrambling is involved, so it definitely deserves the wild level. Panoramic Langtang sea of the magnificent mountains can be viewed from the area.
Kyangjin (3900m), cresting a minor ridge, is erroneously called Kyangjin Gompa. The Gompa’s name is Gyaltsthan. The valley is perfect musk deer country where an army post has been set up.
Tilman’s Col is a challenging alternative exit of Langtang Valley, an isolated route for mountaineers. After crossing the heavily glaciated pass the difficulties don’t end passing through down steep and rough terrain to Panch Pokhari (Five Lakes). Up the Pangrima Valley are three other possible points to cross the Jugal Himalaya range.
Barbal (2300m) lies amid thickening forest of maple trees with singing and squawking of birds, and apple orchard. It is the place of wild animals and birds such as barking deer, green parrots and pheasants.
It is located at the area of Thangshyap (3200m) just nearby Langtang Village. Fields begin here all belonging to Langtang Village. Gompa, related to Lama praying temple for, is occasionally open. Any Lama worth his butter in Langtang or Helambu can mystically drill holes in rock and around his gompa you can find several of these mysterious holes. Another feature here is garnets. Towering above to the north-left, are a couple of peaks called Langtang Lirung, the sacred peak where ill spirits are prayed for making climbing successful.
There are popular two base camps in the region. Base Camp, 4350m (Kangja La) has few flat spaces for tents. This area has a pool called Yeshekupedakta. And another Base Camp, 4600m (Poldar) with camping spots and two routes that involve scrambling up is highly challenging. It is a large flat area fed by glacier waters. Between base camp and glacier camp are several more several rough camping spots leading to ridges.
Cherko or Tsergo Ri (4984m) is situated like an island of enlightenment among a sea of ice and mountains. It is also the most strenuous and is better attempted after being at Kyangjin for a couple of days. There are several routes up. The quickest and most brutal is via Tarche Pesa and the west pur.An alternative route traverses from just below the first set of huts to the sacked kore of Digyabsa. There are several more choices including the kore of Yala.
Climbing these twin peaks (Kyangjin, 4350m and Kyimoshung 4620m) is a must for even the shortest of visits to Kyngjin. The walls of the mountain are so steep that the snow avalanches off to form the glacier below rather than collecting up the sides of the bowl. To the south-east, Cherko squats just left of the savagely beautiful. Past the saddle to the east is a slightly higher point of 4670m; jagged ridge continues to get higher.
This is an area worthy of exploration. Just beyond the first swath of scree entering from the right/north are some grassier slopes with a faint trail. Heading up, the grazing runs out but it is possible, though quite steep, to reach a rounded summit of spectacular views.
Pangsang Bhanjyang, 3856m, is the open pass marked by stone guardians and prayer flags. The new views include the Manaslu range and parts of Annapurna. To the north, the magnificent Ganesh Himal begins to come into view while to the immediate west complicated creased ridges descend to become the middle hills of the Ganesh range. To the south, ridge after blue-ridge of hills extends towards Kathmandu. From just south of the pass most of the route to the Singla (4000m), the highest point of the high ridge that runs east west of the north-south ridge, is visible. Singla provides a stunning sunset and sunrise panorama along with views of Machhapuchhre.
Gongur Bhanjyang, 2950m, is the saddle pass often used by groups as a camping or lunch spot. East leads to the kharka previously visible while dropping west leads to many villages and the valley floor. The standard trekking route is the straight, flat option. There are also some interesting rock formations reminiscent of the faces photographed in the Honey-hunters of Nepal, a 1988 national Geographic article and book available in Kathmandu.
Bhalchhe, 2050m, extensive fields, remains at the distance of 3 to 4 hours from the saddle. This is a typical Tamang village complete with shit-lined trails, throngs of kids and woman who beg for cigarettes. Stoned stepping down trails reaches through an old stupa, various villages, Sattobhatti, 1380m, to Trishuli river.
Although the closest road and bus is at Betrawati the slightly longer walk to Trishuwali is also rewarding. The river, which is not far away from Kathmandu, is famous for rafting. Among various communities in the area, Tamang dwellings by the sides of the river always stand for unique and tremendous heritage of the typical culture.
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