Mera Peak Expedition

Summit of Mera Peak
  • TRIP TYPE: Mountaineering
  • TRIP GRADE: Challenging
  • TRIP STYLE: Tea House
  • TRIP LEADER: International Leader
  • GROUP SIZE: 5 - 14 people
  • NEXT DEPARTURE: 25 Oct 2021

Details

Mera Peak is the highest trekking peak in Nepal at over 6,400m and the view from the summit is one of the finest in the Himalaya with five 8,000m peaks visible: Everest, Lhotse, Cho Oyu, Makalu and Kanchenjunga.

Our itinerary has been carefully designed to allow for gradual acclimatisation. We believe that by using this itinerary you will have a higher chance of safely summiting Mera Peak and enjoying the experience. As a safety precaution we bring a portable altitude chamber, an oxymeter and a satellite phone.

Mera Peak would be a suitable objective for people with previous mountaineering experience (Scotland, Alps, New Zealand or North America Rockies etc) looking for a Himalayan expedition climbing over 6,000m.

  • We are Himalayan trekking specialists and we have been operating trips in Nepal for many years. Roland Hunter, owner and founder of The Mountain Company, has modified this itinerary based on his first-hand experience of the Mera Peak region.
  • The Mountain Company has organised ten successful expeditions to climb Mera Peak. For more information on how these treks went please take a look at our Trip Reports.
  • We work with some of the best mountain leaders and guides with deep knowledge and experience of the Himalaya and Karakoram. Unlike many other operators we still allocate appropriately trained international leaders for more remote and technical trips like Mera Peak.
  • Read our AITO Traveller Reviews for Mera Peak where our overall holiday rating is 100%. Our approach to organising trips in the Himalayas has helped The Mountain Company win awards such as 2018 Gold Award as AITO Tour Operator of the Year and 2015 Bronze Award as AITO Tour Operator of the Year.
  • Our Mera Peak itinerary has been designed based on our first hand experience which is the best in terms of acclimatisation, safety and enjoyment. There are eighteen trekking days including rest and acclimatisation days at Chalem Kharka, Tagnag and Khare.
  • We have also included in our itinerary one spare or contingency day that could be used for a second summit attempt if poor weather and conditions or in case of any other delays experienced along the way such as Lukla flight.
  • Western branded tents are used for all of our camping treks in Nepal. These are high quality three person domed tents with plenty of space for two people sharing plus gear.
  • The Mountain Company will receive bespoke weather forecasts for the Mera Peak region from EverestWeather.com and from our in house forecasting throughout the duration of this trek.
  • We send a Thuraya satellite phone on all of our treks in Nepal. It is essential for your guide to have reliable communications with us for logistics, planning and group safety. We use GPS on Thuraya satellite phone to upload daily your location on to Google Maps so your friends and family can track your progress during the trek.
  • We provide all porters with windproof jacket & trousers, crampons and shelter as per International Porter Protection Group (“IPPG”) guidelines.
  • There will be a range of tasty meals for breakfast, lunch and supper. We give everyone in the group one chocolate or muesli bar per day (Mars, Twix, Bounty etc) and also provide Pringles and biscuits at tea time. For breakfast every morning we provide fresh coffee from our Bialetti Moka coffee machine.
  • We bring a comprehensive first aid kit plus high altitude medicine, antibiotics and other medicines. There will also be a portable altitude chamber (PAC or Gamow bag).
  • Pre trip support will be given by our Operations team with first hand knowledge of Mera Peak Expedition. During high season we have a TMC representative from our UK Operations team based in Kathmandu.

Route Map

Itinerary

Arrive in Kathmandu

No meals

Hotel Tibet in Kathmandu

You will be met on arrival at Kathmandu airport and driven back to the hotel.  Please provide travel plans on booking and we will arrange the pick up and transfer.  A full expedition briefing will be given in the afternoon.

Breakfast

Hotel Tibet in Kathmandu

Today your leader will brief you on the expedition and check your gear for the trip.

Fly to Phaplu

Walking 19km (7 hours walking)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Camping

You will be driven to Kathmandu domestic airport for the early morning flight to mountain airstrip at Phaplu. This is a truly spectacular beginning to the trek as you fly over the rolling foothills of Nepal with the huge Himalayan peaks visible to the north. The flight takes about thirty five minutes flying in small Twin Otter planes.

On arrival to Phaplu we meet our trek crew and porters and then begin the trek towards Taksindo La pass. Our first night is in the village of Taksindo where we camp in the garden of a teahouse lodge and use their dining room for our meals.

Important note: there is a significant safety risk to consider when flying on airlines in Nepal, if you would like to avoid STOL flight from Kathmandu to Phaplu there is an option to extend your trek by driving to Phaplu in one day. However there are also safety considerations with this option as driving in Nepal is risky too. For further information about the flight safety risk in Nepal please read our “Threat and Risk Assessment” plus “Lukla and Phaplu STOL flight” sections of this Trip Dossier.

Walking 12km (6 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Camping

There is a steep descent into Dudh Khosi valley and then an ascent on other side of the river to Khari Khola village.

Walking 5km (4 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Camping

We ascend through the village of Hil Tang up to the Sherpa village of Pangom.

Walking 8km (6 to 7 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Camping

From Pangom village we walk through rhododendron forest and bamboo up to Pangom La at 3,173m where we get our first view of the impressive Mera Peak. After the pass we descend for ½ hour to Shibuche village and then drop steeply on a loose trail to a suspension bridge crossing the Hinku river. It takes about four hours to reach our lunch place located beyond the bridge. After lunch we have a sustained climb to our campsite at Nashing Dingma normally taking a further two to three hours.

Walking 4km (5 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Camping

From Nashing Dingma it takes about one and a half hours to climb over Surke La then only another hour until lunch as there is no water available further along ridge. After lunch the trail follows Surkhe Danda ridge covered in bamboo and rhododendrons with beautiful views looking out to the hills east of the Hongu valley. There is a further two to three hours walking to reach Chalem Kharka, this campsite has a number of terraces cut out by Rai people from Bung village who own the land.

Walking 4km (4 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Camping

Today we retrace yesterday’s trail to the first pass at 4,200m taking two hours then carry on for a further hour and a half to the second pass at 4,450m. It is a short descent taking twenty minutes to the stunning Panch Pokhari lakes where we usually eat our pack lunches while enjoying the view of this magnificent place. These lakes are considered to be holy by Hindus and each summer many pilgrims visit during their religious festivals. Look out for the numerous tridents left behind in this area, these symbolise the Hindu God Lord Shiva. From the lakes it takes a further thirty minutes to walk to our camp at Chunbu Kharka.

Walking 8.5km (7 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Camping

There is a steep climb out of our camp to gain a ridge at 4,400m then from here the trail contours high above the Hinku river. Trekking poles are essential for today’s walk as the trail is steep in places and can be icy due to its northern aspect. After four hours walking we descend steeply through rhododendron forest finally get to our lunch place after another hour.

Look out for the huge erosion scar in the valley above Hinku river. This was happened on September 3rd 1998 when a glacial lake called Sabai Tsho further up the valley above Tagnag breached its moraine dam producing a devastating Glacial Lake Outburst Flood (“GLOF”) that surged down the Hinku valley.

After lunch there is a further two to three hours walking, we cross Hinku river on a bridge to reach Kothe where there are a number of lodges. We camp in a grassy area next to one of these lodges.

Walking 8.5km (5 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Camping

Today it feels like you are entering into the high mountains of the Himalaya for the first time rather than seeing them from distance as on the trek so far. There are superb views of Kyashar (6,769m) and Kusum Karguru (6,367m).

The walk is a steady and gradual climb up the valley, for the first section we walk near the river on a rocky trail then later on climb up to grassy yak pastures (kharka) above river level. It takes three hours to read our lunch place and then a further two hours to Tagnag. It is worth visiting the cave monastery reached an hour or so after lunch.

Day walk

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Camping

To aid our acclimatisation we spend two nights at Tagnag. In the morning we will organise a walk up the ridge behind Tagnag where there are superb views of Mera Peak, Kyashar and Kusum Kanguru. If continue to top of the ridge one can get to an altitude of 5,100m, this walk takes three and half hours up and one and a half back to Tagnag.

Walking 5km (4 hours walking)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Camping

On leaving Tagnag we cross the boulders left behind when Sabai Tsho glacial lake burst in 1998 during GLOF. After about one hour walk from Tagnag, it is worth walking over to see Sabai Tsho as this is only a short detour from the main trail.

It takes two and a half hours to walk to the grassy area at Dig Kharka then the trail climbs up a hill and takes a further hour to Khare. There are several lodges in Khare with good camping grounds. In the afternoon you can go for a walk up the moraine ridge above camp where there is a good view of our route to the summit of Mera Peak.

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Camping

To aid our acclimatisation we spend two nights at Khare. For those who would like to practice skills needed for glacial travel we will organise a session on the glacier above Khare. Alternatively, you can go for a day walk and explore the area to the north of camp towards Kangtega.

Walking 3.5km (4 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Camping

Leaving Khare we ascend a moraine ridge then followed by a scree slope to arrive at a small tea shop, this normally takes one and a half hours walking. It is a further half hour to reach the snout of the glacier where we gear up putting on crampons and harness. Once on the glacier there is a short climb on ice to reach the glacial plateau that can then be followed all the way to the Mera La. Once at the Mera La there is a short descent to the east side of the pass to get to the rocky tent platforms.

Walking 3km (3 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Camping

From our camp we ascend back to Mera La taking half an hour or so then our route turns left and following easy angled snow slopes. As you climb higher the Himalaya vista opens up, the first 8,000m peak seen is Mount Makalu to the east then a little higher you see Mount Everest and finally shortly before arriving to High Camp Mount Kanchenjunga. High Camp is located on a rocky outcrop at 5,800m and from here you can also see most of tomorrow’s route to the summit of Mera Peak.

Walking 12km (9 hours+)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Camping

Today we have an early morning start normally around 3am walking in the dark using head torches to light the way, in November the first glow from sun appears at 5.15am and it is light by 6.15am. Of course it will be very cold so it is essential that you are fully kitted out for these conditions (see kit list in Appendix of this Trip Dossier). 

We will rope together in groups of three to four climbers with a western guide or Sherpa on each rope. Shortly out of High Camp the route passes through an area with several crevasses then after an hour or so the trail turns to right and starts to steepen as we approach the summit. It normally takes between five and six hours to reach the summit from High Camp whereas the descent back down take two hours and then another two hours down to Khare.

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Camping

This spare day could be used for a second summit attempt if poor weather and conditions were experienced yesterday. This is also a buffer day in case of any other delays experienced along the way such as Lukla flight.

Walking 14km (7 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Camping

Today we retrace our route back to Kothe. It takes two hours to walk to Tagnag then a further two hours to lunch then afterwards it takes a further then two and half hours to Kothe.

Walking 6km (7 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Camping

Coming out of Kothe we follow Hinku river downstream for a while before ascending to our lunch place at Tattor. After lunch we climb through blue pine forest then rhododendron followed by a long undulating traverse to reach our camping place at Thuli Kharka.

Walking 8km (7 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

There is a steep ascent from Thuli Kharka to the first pass Zatra Og normally taking an hour and half followed by a traverse to the second pass Zatra La taking a further forty five minutes. The descent from Zatra La can be icy so depending on conditions you might have to use your crampons and ice axe and we might also fix rope to help secure your passage.

Once we get to the tea shop the trail will be clear of snow and ice, from here we continue our descent for an hour or so until we reach the lunch place. After this we continue through forest and then cultivated farmland to reach Lukla.

Fly to Kathmandu

Breakfast

Hotel Tibet in Kathmandu

If the weather is fine in Lukla then hopefully we will get an early morning flight back to Kathmandu. The rest of the day you are free to relax in Kathmandu or to go shopping, normally groups will meet up in the evening for a farewell meal.

Breakfast

Hotel Tibet in Kathmandu

Fly home

Breakfast

Transfer to Kathmandu airport for the flight back home.  End of trip.

Dates & Prices

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2021

Dates Trip Leader Price Single Supplement: Room/Tent Availability
Dates 25 Oct 2021 to 16 Nov 2021 Trip Leader International Leader Price US$3,995pp
US$3,895pp
Single Supplement:
Room/Tent
US$240pp / US$310pp
Availability 5 Left to Guarantee
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2022

Dates Trip Leader Price Single Supplement: Room/Tent Availability
Dates 04 Apr 2022 to 26 Apr 2022 Trip Leader International Leader Price US$3,995pp
US$3,895pp
Single Supplement:
Room/Tent
US$240pp / US$310pp
Availability 5 Left to Guarantee
Early Bird Discount
Book Now
Dates 24 Oct 2022 to 15 Nov 2022 Trip Leader International Leader Price US$3,995pp
US$3,895pp
Single Supplement:
Room/Tent
US$240pp / US$310pp
Availability 5 Left to Guarantee
Early Bird Discount
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For private and bespoke trip, please contact us

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What's Included

  • Internal flight from Kathmandu to Phaplu and from Lukla back to Kathmandu including baggage allowance of 20kg for your main bag checked into the hold and 5kg for day pack carried with you inside the aircraft.
  • All transfers including airport collections.
  • Twin share room at Hotel Tibet or Hotel Ambassador in Kathmandu.
  • Breakfast only in Kathmandu, all meals included while on trek.  
  • Twin share tents while on trek using our Western branded tents. These are three person domed tents with plenty of space for two people sharing plus gear.
  • All trekking arrangements including permits and fees, tents, Western and Sherpa guides, porters and cook.
  • Bespoke weather forecasts for Mera Peak from EverestWeather.com throughout the duration of this expedition.
  • Thuraya satellite phone for organising logistics and medical evacuations, it can also be also used for personal calls at extra cost.
  • We use GPS on Thuraya satellite phone to upload daily your location onto Google Maps so your friends and family can track your progress during the trek.
  • Wood heater charges in the dining room of the teahouse lodges (usual charge is £2 per person per day). Most other operators will ask members to pay this as extra while on trek.
  • Mera Peak trekking map given to you on arrival to Kathmandu.
  • Rubberised luggage tags posted to you before departure.
  • Full financial protection for all monies paid to us through our membership of Association of Bonded Travel Operators Trust (our ABTOT membership number is 5365) and having an Air Travel Organiser’s Licence (our ATOL number is 10921).
  • Pre departure support and advice from The Mountain Company by email, phone or face to face meetings in London. After booking with us we will send our comprehensive “Nepal Pre Trip Information” notes.

What's Not Included

  • International flight to/from Kathmandu.
  • Travel & trekking insurance.
  • Nepal visa for 30 days.
  • Lunch and evening meals in Kathmandu.
  • Personal clothing & equipment, please see Appendix for suggested kit list.
  • Tips (guidance on amounts included in our “Nepal Pre Trip Information” notes).
  • If you have to wait in Kathmandu at the beginning of the trip due to delays in flying into Lukla STOL mountain airstrip the cost for your overnight accommodation in Kathmandu is not included so you will have to pay extra for this.
  • If there are cancellations with the airplanes flying into Lukla it may be possible to fly in a helicopter. There would be an extra cost for this service between US$400 to US$600 per person depending on which helicopter company is used and the demand at the time.
  • Other items not listed in “What is included”.

Accommodation

Hotel Tibet in Kathmandu

Hotel Tibet is located in Lazimpat next to the Radisson and is our usual hotel for our standard trips in Nepal.

We have used Hotel Tibet for over 15 years and our previous clients enjoy staying at this property due to its good location, comfortable rooms and high level of service. There is a garden terrace next to the restaurant on the ground floor and the roof terrace with the Yeti Bar overlooking the city.


Camping in Nepal

We use both Mountain Hardwear Trango 3.1s and Quechua tents for our camping treks in Nepal.

Practical Information

A Typical Day On Camping Trek

The day starts with an early morning mug of tea brought to your tent by one of the assistant guides. Before heading over to the mess tent for breakfast you will pack your overnight gear into your duffel bag. During breakfast the tents will be packed away and, after the porters have arranged their loads, they will set off on the trail in the cool of the morning. After breakfast, probably between 7am and 8am, we start walking. The pace of the trek is leisurely with plenty of time to enjoy the scenery, take photos and explore the local villages. Lunch will be around 11am at a spot by the side of the trail and is prepared for us by the cooks.


There is more walking after lunch and normally you will get into camp by mid afternoon with the tents already put up by the local staff. In the evening a three course meal is served in the mess tent around 6-7pm. After supper the international leader will discuss the plan for the next day with the group. People might stay in the mess tent chatting about the day’s events for a while before retiring to their tent for the night.

While on the trek, the cook will provide good quality food in sufficient quantities.  For breakfast you are likely to get porridge or cereal, toast or chapatis, omelettes and a range of hot drinks. For our camping treks we provide fresh coffee from our Bialetti Moka coffee machine. On arrival to camp in the afternoon you will be given tea and biscuits and a three course meal will follow later in the evening.

Communications

We bring a Thuraya satellite phone for logistical, safety and personal use. Personal calls charged at £4 (US$5 or €4.50) per minute and £2 (US$3 €4.50) to send and receive SMS text.

Clothing and Equipment List for Mera Peak

For the safety of everyone in the group and to help ensure a successful expedition, you are required to have the following items in our clothing and equipment list tailored for Mera Peak. Your gear will be checked by the group leader in Kathmandu prior to departure.

As a reminder, the weather on this trek will vary season to season and day to day as you ascend to higher elevations. During the first couple of days on Mera Peak you will experience warm with temperatures around 20 to 25˚C. You will experience the coldest temperatures at High Camp and for early morning summit attempt where overnight lows could be down to around -20˚C (even lower when considering wind chill too).

Each trekker should bring one backpack for gear required during the day. Your day backpack will contain items such as warm clothes, jacket, camera, water bottles, personal first aid kit and snacks. The maximum weight allowance for back pack is 5kg. The rest of your personal equipment packed in a duffel or kit bag will be carried by a porter. The maximum weight allowance for your duffel bag  is 20kg. Please ensure that your bag is marked clearly on the outside for easy identification.

We suggest you print the kit list and tick items off as you pack them then weigh your kit bag before you come on trek.

Footwear:

  • Double mountaineering boots with insulated inners (i.e Plastics) eg. Scarpa Vegas High Altitude or La Sportiva Spantik, there are other suitable boots available please visit a reputable outdoor store for further advice on latest products available). Please note double mountaineering boots are mandatory for Mera Peak.

If you are UK based you can rent boots and other mountaineering gear from http://www.expeditionkithire.co.uk

  • Three season walking boots. For the trek you will need a pair of water repellent boots with ankle support.
  • A pair of knee high gaiters used to keep boots dry if walking through deep snow or on wet ground.
  • Mountaineering socks for time spent on Mera Peak (eg Bridgedale summit socks).
  • Walking socks.
  • Trail shoes or trainers. Can be used around camp.

Clothing:

  • Waterproof jacket and trousers (goretex or similar). For use if it rains or snows during the trek.
  • Trekking trousers (eg. Mountain Hardwear Mesa V2 or The North Face Paramount Peak). Minimum two pairs of trousers.
  • Soft shell trousers (eg. The North Face Cotopaxi).
  • Long sleeve synthetic shirts ie. not cotton (eg. Capilene base layer from Patagonia). Minimum two shirts.
  • Micro fleece (eg. The North Face 100 Glacier or 100 Khyber fleeces or Mountain Hardwear Microstretch Zip T or Patagonia R1 pullover).
  • Mid to heavyweight fleece (eg. The Mountain Hardwear Desna Hoody II or Patagonia R2).
  • Sleeveless or body warmer type fleece (eg. The Mountain Hardwear Tech vest or Patagonia Better Sweater vest). This will help keep your core warm while not bulking when layering up. Gilet fleece can be used in combination with base layers, other fleeces and down jacket to provide maximum warmth and insulation.
  • Thermals or base layer for top & bottom (merino wool or synthetic).
  • Fleece pants. To be worn around camp or added as an additional layer when the temperatures start to drop higher up.
  • Medium weight down jacket (eg. The North Face Nuptse jacket or Mountain Hardwear Hooded Phantom Jacket).

Handwear: please note we strongly recommend you bring all three types of the gloves and mitts listed below.

  • Fleece gloves. It is best to have these gloves with Windblocker fabric for extra warmth.
  • Mountaineering gloves (eg. Mountain Hardwear Medusa glove or Black Diamond Enforcer or Guide glove).
  • Warm mitts (eg. Mountain Hardwear Absolute Zero or Nilas mitt or Black Diamond Mercury mitt).

Headwear:

  • Wool or fleece hat. It is best to have hat with Windblocker fabric for extra warmth.
  • Sun hat.
  • Bandana or face mask (eg. Buff Headwear check out http://www.buffwear.com)
  • These need to have side protection or should be wraparound design to prevent light getting through to your eyes that could cause sun blindness.
  • Ski googles.

Climbing equipment:

  • Climbing harness with two slings, four screw gate carabiners, belay plate and 3m of 5mm static cord for prussiks [we have a limited number of “Harness packs” for rent, this includes harness (medium size Black Diamond Alpine BOD), ATC belay device with large carabiner, three screwgate carabiners, Petzl handle ascender, two slings and prussik cord. Please contact TMC office for further prices and availability]
  • Jumar ascender (eg. Petzl handle ascender).
  • Crampons, 12 point general mountaineering type are the best (eg Grivel G12s)
  • Kahtoola Microspokes or YakTrax XTRs. These are for your safety and security when descending passes if snowy or icy conditions, for more information please take a look at: https://kahtoola.com/product/microspikes/ and https://www.yaktrax.com/product/xtr
  • Mountaineering ice axe with leash.
  • Climbing helmet (mandatory as there is risk of rock fall on Mera Peak).

 

Personal Equipment:

  • Sleeping bag. Temperature rated to at least -18 Celsius.
  • Fleece or silk liner for your sleeping bag. A liner protects your sleeping bag from getting dirty and helps by adding extra insulation to keep you warm at night.
  • Sleeping mat (eg. Thermarest). On trek we provide everyone with one foam mat however we recommend two layers for maximum insulation and comfort.
  • Recommended size is 50 litres or larger as you need to have enough space to carry water bottles, camera, lunch and extra clothing as well as crampons, ice axe and down jacket for when climbing on Mera Peak. It is also a good idea to bring a pack cover to keep the contents dry.
  • Stuff sacks for keeping your gear dry and organised. Or even better are fold- drybags such as from Exped, for more information:
  • Bring extra batteries.
  • The lenses need to be Category 4 rated and should have side protection or wraparound design to prevent light getting through to your eyes that could cause sun blindness.
  • Two water bottles (eg. Nalgene wide mouth bottles are the best).
  • Pee bottle. Highly recommended as means you do not have to get up to find toilet tent at night! For men you can use an old water bottle for women take a look at SheWee at http://www.shewee.com/
  • Sunscreen and lipsalve with a high SPF.
  • Insect repellent.
  • Water purification tablets (Pristine, Biox Acqua or Acqa Mira). You will be provided with boiled water at camp however if you refill water bottle at a water tap or steam during the day you should use water purifiers.
  • Trekking poles (Black Diamond with “Flick Lock” are best). Having two poles is mandatory as required for your safety on steep and loose sections of the trail and for walking through deep snow higher up.
  • Camera with spare batteries and memory cards.
  • Insurance certificate.
  • Earplugs (optional).
  • Baby wipes (optional).
  • Hand sanitizer. We suggest you keep this in your day pack for use after a toilet break during the trek or before eating any snacks.

Travelling:

  • Duffle bag or large backpack for your personal gear on the trek (carried by a porter). Bring a small combination padlock to secure the bag.
  • Travel clothes. You will need casual clothing for air travel days and time spent in Kathmandu.
  • Toiletry bag include toilet paper, soap, towel, toothbrush, etc. We provide toilet paper so you do not need to bring this with you.

Personal first aid kit:

Note: we provide a comprehensive group first aid kit but please bring personal medications and other items you might use regularly such as:

  • Any personal medications.
  • Blister treatment (Compeed patches are the best).
  • Analgesics (paracetamol, ibuprofen and aspirin).
  • Throat lozenges.
  • Diamox (helps with acclimatisation).

 

Threat and risk assessment for Mera Peak

Participants should be aware trekking, mountaineering and travelling in a developing country are activities that involve a risk of personal injury or death. As a condition of booking you must accept these risks and be responsible for your own actions and involvement.

Adventure travel requires an open and flexible attitude. You may experience extreme conditions, unpredictable weather and last minute changes to the itinerary beyond our control. The ability to work in team is an important aspect of all of our trips.

As a part of our planning process we have performed a detailed threat and risk assessment for our Mera Peak Expedition. It is worth pointing out all of our trips have a certain degree of risk, this is of course part of the attraction of adventure travel and why so many people choose to join this type of holiday. However by identifying the potential hazards on Mera Peak Expedition we can assess the level of risk and implement control measures to reduce this happening.

Our full threat and risk assessment for Mera Peak Expedition is available to clients on request. For your information we have listed below a summary of the significant risks and hazards identified by us:

  • Falls and trips resulting in physical injury eg. slipping on ice or falling off the path.
  • Altitude illness including but not limited to AMS, HACE and HAPE.
  • Getting lost or becoming separated from group eg. summit day in whiteout.
  • Severe bad weather and conditions when camping eg.at Mera La or High Camp.
  • Climatic injuries (frostbite, frost nip, dehydration, sun burn, heat exhaustion, hypothermia or heat stroke).
  • Crossing a river with no bridge resulting in drowning and/ or a fall.
  • Rock fall and landslides.
  • Snow and ice avalanches eg. on Mera Peak and crossing Zatra La.
  • Lightning strike.
  • Wildlife, pack animals (eg. donkeys or horses) or stray dogs. Pack animals have been known to knock people off the path. Dogs can attack and bite, we advise you discuss rabies vaccination with your doctor.
  • Earthquake.
  • Risk of fire in the hotel or lodge.
  • Endemic local diseases. We advise you discuss vaccinations with your doctor before departure.
  • Physiological injury such as heart attack, appendicitis, hernia, toothache etc. in a remote area.
  • Road traffic or flight accident [see paragraph “Lukla and Phaplu flight” for further information about STOL flights].
  • Contaminated food and/ or water.

This trip visits a remote area where you are away from normal emergency services and medical facilities. In case of a serious injury requiring hospitalisation evacuation could take up to several days and may impede your ensuing recovery. Helicopters are the most usual means of evacuation, however they are not always available or they may be hindered by poor weather and flying conditions.

Phaplu and Lukla flights

Please note that flights to and from Nepal’s Short Take-Off & Landing (“STOL”) mountain airstrips such as Lukla and Phaplu are dependent on the weather. Delays often happen if there is poor visibility or high winds.

If you have to wait in Kathmandu at the beginning of the trip due to delays in flying into a STOL mountain airstrip the cost for your overnight accommodation in Kathmandu is not included so you will have to pay extra for this. If there are cancellations with the airplanes flying into Lukla it may be possible to fly in a helicopter. There would be an extra cost for this service between US$400 to US$600 per person depending on which helicopter company is used and the demand at the time.

In all of our itineraries visiting areas with STOL mountain airstrips such as Everest region we include one extra day in Kathmandu at the end of the trip in case of delays flying back. If you are delayed longer than this our office in Kathmandu can help reschedule your international flights however there is likely to be a fee charged by the airline for this. You will also have to pay for all of your additional costs incurred in Kathmandu as a result of the delay such as accommodation and meals.

British Foreign & Commonwealth Office (“FCO”) travel advice to Nepal states that “STOL airstrips in Nepal are among the most remote and difficult to land on in the world and are a challenge for even the most technically proficient pilots and well-maintained aircraft.” For their latest advice please take a look at their Safety & Security section under Air Travel, link at: https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/nepal/safety-and-security

There have been a number of recent air accidents in Nepal and in December 2013 The European Union banned all airlines based in Nepal from flying in the 28-nation bloc under the latest changes to a list of unsafe carriers.  For more information on Nepal’s air safety profile take a look at Aviation Safety Network, link at: http://aviation-safety.net/database/country/country.php?id=9N

Weather and climate for Mera Peak

Mera Peak Expedition will have a wide range of temperatures depending on the altitude and the time of day. In the mountains between 1,000m and 3,500m the nights will be cool, normally around 5˚C, and during the day temperatures sometimes rise to 25˚C.  At higher altitudes temperatures range from about 15˚C to -18˚C.

The traditional trekking season in Nepal is late September to May, with October and November generally recognised as having the best weather.  Spring is also a popular time of year with warmer weather and the advantage of seeing spring flowers and rhododendrons in bloom.

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