Gokyo Ri

Mera & Island Peak Climbing

with EBC & Gokyo Ri trekking

Mera & Island Peak climbing with EBC & Gokyo Ri trekking

Overview

Mera Peak is the highest trekking peak in Nepal, standing at an elevation of 6,476 meters. Island Peak, also known as Imja Tse, is another popular climbing peak at 6,189 meters. Both peaks require technical climbing skills and experience, so it’s important to have proper training and guidance before attempting these climbs.

Combining the Mera Peak & Island peak climb with the Everest Base Camp (EBC) and Gokyo Ri treks is a popular itinerary for those seeking a comprehensive Himalayan adventure. This itinerary allows you to experience the iconic EBC trek and the stunning Gokyo Lakes while also attempting two challenging climbing peaks.

Both Mera Peak and Island Peak offer incredible views of the surrounding Himalayan peaks and provide a thrilling mountaineering experience. It is important to have proper physical fitness, previous trekking experience, and mountaineering skills before attempting these climbs. 

This combined itinerary typically takes around 31 days, including trekking, acclimatization, and climbing. It offers a unique opportunity to witness the beauty of the Everest region, experience high-altitude trekking and mountaineering, and create unforgettable memories in the Himalayas.

Day to day itinerary

Day 1: Arrival in Kathmandu (1400m/4592ft) – Transfer to hotel

Arrival and Welcome in Tribhuvan international airport, Kathmandu. Once you arrive in Kathmandu, our representative will meet you at the airport and drive you to your hotel. Check-in and take a rest. Overnight at a hotel in Kathmandu.

Day 2: Trip preparation in Kathmandu

You will meet your guide today and he will brief you on your upcoming climb. He will share some important tips and inform you about the condition of the route. There will be a final gear and equipment check after the briefing. As Ason, Kathmandu’s oldest market lie close to Thamel you can take a stroll down the bazaar and take photographs. Overnight at a hotel in Kathmandu.

Day 3: Fly to Lukla (2840m/9316ft) and trek to Paiya (2730m/8956ft) – 35 minutes flight and 5 to 6 hours trek

If you are lucky you will get a seat on the first flight to Lukla which flies directly from Kathmandu. If not, then you will be driven to Rammechhap Airport from where you board your plane. It is a thrilling experience to fly to Lukla, set amid high mountains and cliffs. Once you reach Lukla, you will meet the rest of the crew and head to Paiya. Take the trail to the south and head down to Surkey Village. From the village, the trail goes upwards to Chutok La. A short descent from the pass brings you to Paiya, a small settlement, and the first overnight stop. Overnight at a teahouse in Paiya.

Day 4: Trek to Panggom (2846m/9335ft) [6-7 hrs]

Walk past terraced fields, farms, and a lush forest. Cross the Paiya Khola, a small river, and climb up a mountain pass, Khari La. The trail follows an up and down route. Hike through thick rhododendron and bamboo forest and arrive at the picturesque Sherpa settlement of Panggom. Head to a teahouse and rest your tired legs. Overnight at a teahouse in Panggom.

Day 5: Trek to Ramailo Danda (3276m/10746ft) [5-6 hrs]

Leave Panggom and make your way towards Ramailo Danda. It is an upward ascent through a pristine rhododendron forest to Pankongma La (3174m), a mountain pass. We cross the Dudh Koshi River Valley and walk into the Hingku Valley. En route, we savor breathtaking views of Numbur Himal, Kongde, and Manju Peak. We stop briefly at Ningsow for lunch. Afterward, trek up and down to Ramailo Danda. From here we get our first view of Mera Peak. Overnight at a teahouse in Ramailo Danda.

Day 6: Trek to Chhatra Khola (2800m/9184ft) [6-7 hrs]

There are no human settlements or villages en route and the trail is wild and challenging. The park is home to Snow leopard, Red panda, Himalayan Tahr, musk deer, and many rare species of birds and plants. We stop at a quiet spot and have our packed lunch.  Climbing stone staircases and walking past rocky paths we finally arrive at Chhatra Khola, our stop for the night. Overnight at a teahouse in Chhatra Khola.

Day 7: Trek to Kothe (3691m/12107ft) [6-7 hrs]

Taking the northward trail we walk past a thick bamboo forest and walk towards the Hinku Khola. We enter the Makalu Barun National Park and walk through a pristine trail. The park’s area stretches all the way to the Nepal-Tibet border. The Hinku Valley receives very few trekkers and chances are we may be the only group on the trail. A gradual up and down and after crossing a bridge before we finally arrive in Kothe. Overnight at a teahouse in Kothe.

Day 8: Trek to Thaknak (4358m/14295ft) [3-4 hrs]

After Kothe, we reach the Upper Hinku valley where the treeline disappears. There are no villages en route only ‘kharkas’ the summer camps of yak herders dot the landscape. Walk past Gondishung and Lungsumgba Gompa, a two-centuries-old Buddhist shrine. Lying underneath an enormous boulder, the local crew pay homage to deities burning incense.

En-route enjoy amazing views of Charpati Himal, Mera Peak, Kusum Kanguru, and Thamserku. After walking for about an hour we reach Thaknak, a summer camp of yak herders. Charpati Himal lies close to the teahouse and we can see the whole mountain. Overnight at a teahouse in Thaknak.

Day 9: Trek to Khare (5045m/16548ft) [3-4 hrs]

Today’s walk involves an ascent to the Dig Glacier and the Charpati Tal, a mountain lake. With stunning views of the Kyeshar glacier, Mera Peak, and Charpati Himal we walk down to Dig Kharka. A tough crossing of the Hinku Nup and Shar glaciers brings us to Khare. Khare lies at the bottom of Mera Peak and is also known as Mera Peak Base Camp. We climb Mera Peak from here. Overnight at a teahouse in Khare.

Day 10: Acclimatisation Day in Khare and pre-climb training

Today you will spend your time acclimatising and practicing your climbing moves at the pre-climb training camp. Our Sherpa climbing guides will teach you how to properly use climbing equipment like jumar, carabiner, belay device, ice axe, harness, etc. They will teach you the basic and safe techniques to scale an incline using a rope and harness.

This training is valuable and helpful if you are a novice climber. A final gear and equipment check will be followed by final packing for the summit push.  Please keep in mind climbing boots of size 12 and greater are not readily available in Nepal. If your shoe size is 12 or 12 plus you need to bring it with you from your home country. Overnight at a teahouse in Khare.

Day 11: Trek to Mera High Camp (5780m/18958ft) [5-6 hrs]

Take the steep and rocky path to Mera La. The three summits of Mera Peak – Mera North (6476m), Mera Central (6461m), and Mera South (6065m) – gleam invitingly. We will be climbing the summit of Mera Central. Crossing the Mera glacier we reach Mera Peak high camp. It is an easy hike up a slope with no technical climbing involved.

On reaching Mera High Camp, the crew serves us hot drinks. Enjoy views of five of the fourteen highest peaks in the world- Mount Everest (8848m), Lhotse (8516m), Makalu (8485m), Cho Oyu (8188m), and Kanchenjunga (8586m). Chamlang (7319m), Gaurishanker (7134m), and Baruntse (7129m) also appear close. A single sleeping tent will be given to each climber. Food will be prepared by the local crew in a kitchen tent. Overnight at a tented camp in Mera High Camp.

Day 12: Summit Mera Peak (6461m/21193ft) and trek to Kongma Dingma (4850m/ 15908ft) – 11 to 12 hours trek/climbing

At 2 AM we prepare for the final summit push. After breakfast, we head out and rope up. A man-rope will secure our group. Hike up the glacier in a single file. No technical climbing is required in this section. The thin air and cold are the only factors that make the ascent difficult. Above 5000 meters we struggle to breathe properly and taking a step forward takes a lot of effort.

The last 40-50 meters to the summit is the most challenging portion. It is a steep incline and fixed rope and jumars are used to climb to the summit. By 9 or 10 AM we reach the summit. Amazing views of Mount Everest (8848m), Makalu (8481m), Kanchenjunga (8586m), Cho Oyu (8201m), Lhotse(8516m), and other peaks surround us.

After spending 5 or 10 minutes savoring the victory and taking pictures we head down via the same route. We reach Mera High Camp have some refreshments. Later we hike down to make a quick descent to Khare. From Khare, we head east. Taking a downward trail we reach Kongma Dingma where we rest for the night. Overnight at a tented camp in Kongma Dingma.

Day 13: Contingency Day for the summit

A buffer day in case our summit bid gets canceled due to bad weather or ill health. This extra day will also come in handy if our domestic flight gets delayed or any unforeseen emergency. If everything goes as planned, you can use this day to explore some more places on the trail or in Kathmandu.

Day 14: Trek to Seto Pokhari (5035m/16520ft) [5-6 hrs]

Leaving Kongma Dingma we walk past yak pastures and summer camps of yak herders. We proceed towards Seto Pokhari enjoying captivating views of Baruntse and Chamlang Himal. Overnight at a tented camp in Seto Pokhari.

Day 15: Trek to Amphu Lapcha Base Camp South (5650m/18532ft) [5-6 hrs]

Climbing up a snowy moraine we reach the beautiful Seto Pokhari, a glacial lake. Head to Amphu Lapcha Base Camp enjoying views of Mount Everest and lakes along the Hongu basin. A walk past the Hongu Pokhari above the Hongu valley brings us finally to the Amphu Lapcha Base Camp. Overnight at a tented Camp in Amphu Lapcha Base Camp.

Day 16: Cross Amphu Lapcha (5845m/19172ft) and trek to Island Peak Base Camp (5100m/16728ft) [9-10 hrs]

After leaving the base camp you make your way across a snowy trail to Amphu Lapcha Pass. You are in the dramatic Upper Hongu Valley which is one of the wildest areas in the Everest Region. Cold, Harsh, and challenging, no human settlements are found at this place.

After walking for about 4 to 5 hours you arrive at the pass. The pass looks stunning but daunting. Covered with ice shelves and serac cliffs, it is a steep incline and you use fixed rope, jumar, and ice axe to ascend the pass. This is one of the most difficult sections of your trip. The top is a narrow ridge filled with rocks. You get down using a fixed rope again. A walk through the Imja Glacier brings you to the Imja Tsho Lake in the Imja Valley. From here climb up a rocky moraine and head to Island peak Base Camp. Overnight at a tented camp in Island Peak Base Camp.

Day 17: Rest day at Island Peak Base Camp (5100m/16728ft)

The crossing of the Amphu Lapcha pass is grueling and leaves you exhausted. Rest and get your energy back. There will be checking of gear and equipment before the summit push. Have an early night for the big day tomorrow. Overnight at a tented camp in Base Camp.

Day 18:  Summit Island Peak (6189m/20305ft) and trek to Chukkung (4730m/15519ft) – 11 to 12 hours trek/ climbing

After breakfast, we carry your pack and head out at 1 AM. Our daypack consists of snacks, camera, packed lunch, water, and any memento we want to leave at the summit.

After ascending a rocky path you reach High Camp. Continue on a slope for about 3 hours to reach Crampon Point, the place where we put on our crampons as the trail becomes icy and snowy. We move ahead on a frozen trail in a group. From 5700m onwards the group will be secured by a man-rope.  Walking on a narrow ridge brings us to the base of Imja Glacier. The sunrise over the Makalu, Ama Dablam, Baruntse, and Chamlang look stunning. As the slope is at an angle of 45 to 50 degrees the ascent is not that technical. The guides fix the ropes at the glacier.

As we near the summit Lhotse appears very close. Lhotse hides the summit of Everest, so Mount Everest is not visible from Island Peak. The climb up a vertical wall using fixed rope before reaching the summit is the toughest part. We ascend the anchor points and cross crevasses using ladders.

Holding on to the fixed rope and we walk along the ridgeline to the summit. The views are amazing. We have done it! At the summit, we take pictures and return via the same route. The descent is long and exhausting. We need to be extra careful as most of the accidents at Island Peak happen during descents. On reaching Base Camp we take rest and celebrate our victory. Later in the day, we hike down to Chukkung. Overnight at a teahouse in Chukkung.

Day 19: Contingency Day for the summit

A buffer day in case our summit bid gets canceled due to bad weather or ill health. This extra day will also come in handy if our domestic flight gets delayed or any unforeseen emergency. If everything goes as planned, you can use this day to explore some more places on the trail or in Kathmandu.

Day 20: Trek to Lobuche (4910m/16109ft) via Kongma La Pass (5535m/18159ft) [7-8 hrs]

Wake up early and take the westward trail out of Chukkung. Cross a stream and follow the Kongma La route.

Lying beyond the busier EBC route, the trail is isolated and you can find yourself connecting with nature. Walk along the Imja Valley and cross the Imja Khola(river). Take a steep ascent and walk along grassy yak pastures. You come across a frozen lake and some waterfalls.

Follow the well-defined path up the mountainside for the first view of Kongma La. You hike across rock and scree to reach the top of the Kongma La Pass. From the top, you can enjoy panoramic views of Mount Everest, Gauri Shanker, Pumori, Makalu, and the frozen 8-mile long wall of Nuptse and Lhotse.

After taking in the views head down. It is a steep descent over boulders and loose rocks. Mind your step and walk carefully. You are walking on the Khumbu glacier and there are crevasses you should be careful of.  You can actually hear the glacier moving, the ice shifting below. The stark and bare landscape has a beauty of its own, and you can’t help taking pictures, however, tired you may feel.

After a long hard day of your first mountain pass traverse, you finally reach Lobuche. Have your dinner and take a much-needed rest at the teahouse. Overnight in Lobuche.

 Day 21: Trek to Gorak Shep (5,140m/16,864ft) – Hike Everest Base Camp (5,364m/17,598ft) [7-8 hrs]

Today you hike to Everest Base Camp, one of the milestones of your trek. Though the trail is not that difficult, the walk is not easy. High altitude makes it difficult to take each step. Take deep breaths and keep your breathing and pace steady. Don’t walk too fast. It’s better to maintain a slow rhythm. Drink lots of water and keep yourself hydrated.

You stop at Gorak Shep, have refreshments and some rest. You leave your stuff at the teahouse and continue your hike to EBC. Walk along the amazing Khumbu Glacier. The landscape devoid of greenery and filled with frozen icicles, snow, dirt and pebbles, and rocks feel out of this world. It feels as though you are in the midst of a sci-fi movie.

Your arrival at Everest base Camp fills you with exhilaration. You have reached one of the highest hiking destinations on Earth. Celebrate with your teammates and take pictures. You can see the massive wall of the Lhotse, Western Cwm, Nuptse and the Khumbu Icefall.

The summit of Mount Everest is too high to be seen from the base camp. On the far side, there’s a rocky valley where camps of Everest summiteers are set up (if it’s climbing season). Soak in the sights and take more pictures before heading down to Gorak Shep. The day had been tiring and it’s great to snuggle in the warm comfort of your bed. Have an early night because you have another eventful day tomorrow. Overnight in Gorak Shep.

Day 22: Hike to Kala Patthar (5,550m/18,209ft) – Trek to Dzongla (4,830m/15,879ft) [6-7 hrs]

Your day begins early with a hike to Kala Patthar just before sunrise. The black hill that lies behind Gorak Shep is named Kala Patthar (meaning black dirt) for its dark appearance. The hill is one of the best vantage points in the Khumbu region.

Enjoy panoramic views of Mount Everest, Pumori, Nuptse, Lhotse, etc. While the summit of Everest is not visible from Everest Base Camp, from Kala Patthar you can enjoy a close-up view of the summit of the world’s tallest mountain.  The early morning sun lighting up the snow-covered peaks in a golden light is a sight you will cherish forever.

Take pictures and head down to Gorak Shep. Have breakfast and later head down to Dzongla. It is mostly downhill and in a short while you arrive at the village. Overnight in Dzongla.

Day 23: Trek to Thaknak (4,680m/15,354ft) via Cho La Pass (5,420m/17,782ft) [6-7 hrs]

Make an early start and walk out of the village. Enjoy close-up views of Cholatse as you make your way to a stream, cross it, and climb a steep hill. It is a tough climb through boulders and rocks.

Walk across the Cho La glacier, which looks magnificent. You may have to wear crampons or spikes at some icy sections. Walk on flat terrain for some time and later take the final ascent up to the top of the Cho La Pass. Enjoy fascinating Himalayan views of glaciers and mountains and later take a steep descent.

The descent is equally tough through more rocky and boulder-strewn portions. Use your trekking poles to steady your legs at steep sections. Walk down on a grassy slope just before you reach the settlement of Thaknak, your overnight stop for today.Overnight at Thaknak.

Day 24: Trek to Gokyo (4,790m/15,715ft) – (4 km) [3-4 hrs]

Today’s hike to Gokyo involves crossing Nepal’s longest glacier Ngozumpa Glacier. Walk up and down through a rocky field. From a lateral moraine take a steep descent to the glacier.

Enjoy the close-up view of Cho Oyu, the 6th highest mountain in the world from the trail. Walk on the glacier. Ngozumpa Glacier originates from Cho Oyu in Tibet and rolls down to the Nepal side. The glacier feeds the Dudh Koshi River and the Gokyo Lakes.

Be careful where you step because there are crevasses at places. Crossing glaciers and mountain passes alone is risky and you will be glad to have our knowledgeable guide with you to accompany you on this hazardous section.

Your first sight of Gokyo lying on the bank of the heavenly third lake, Gokyo Tsho, also known as Dudh Pokhari, will leave you spellbound. It is a beautiful sight to behold and you feel invigorated after the long trek to gaze at such a beautiful sight. Head to a teahouse and take a well-deserved rest. Overnight in Gokyo.

Day 25: Hike to Gokyo Ri (5,360m/17,585ft) [3-4 hrs]

Today you hike to Gokyo Ri, a small hill and a popular viewpoint overlooking the village. No technical climbing is involved. The path up the hill is steep with excellent views of the Gokyo Valley, Ngozumpa Glacier, and 8000-meter peaks including Cho Oyu and Mount Everest.

Depending on your pace it will take 2 to 3 hours to reach the top and about an hour to descend. Enjoy the magical view of the emerald Gokyo Lakes and 360 degrees Himalayan panorama – Cho Oyu, Mount Everest, Makalu, and the Tibetan peaks.

Take pictures and head down. If you still have some energy left you can stroll around the lake area. Overnight in Gokyo.

Day 26: Trek to Lumde (4,368m/14,331ft) via Renjo La Pass (5,360m/17,585ft) [7-8 hrs]

Today you cross the last of the 3 passes. After breakfast, walk out of the lodge and head towards the lake’s northern shore.

The trail goes up and levels out. With barren rocks, no sign of vegetation and craters, you feel as though you are taking a moonwalk. Colorful prayer flags marking the path add color to the landscape.

Trek to the top of Renjo La pass. Compared to Kongma La and Cho La, Renjo La’s traverse is the easiest of the 3 passes. From the top of the pass, you can enjoy heart-stopping views of Makalu, Mount Everest, Rolwaling Range, Gyachung Kang, and other peaks.

It is an easy descent down the pass to the trail that leads to Lumde, your overnight stop. Take a zigzag route past the grassy trail to the village of Lumde. Overnight in Lumde.

Day 27: Trek to Namche (3,440m/11,286ft) [7-8 hrs]

Leave Lumde and head towards Namche. Walk past yak pastures and cross traditional Sherpa village. After 3 hours of the walkthrough in small villages en route, you will reach Thame. Continue and the trail mostly downhill until you reach the central hub of the Khumbu region, Namche Bazaar. Overnight in Namche Bazaar.

Day 28: Trek to Lukla (2,840m/9,318ft) [6-7 hrs]

Retrace your steps to Lukla. The final leg of your trek takes you past the same beautiful alpine scenery that mesmerized you at the start of your trek.

You can’t help feeling that the challenges you have faced and overcome in the past days have left you a changed person, a better person who can take any challenges in life. This is one of the best perks of an Everest trek, it affirms your belief in yourself.

After arriving in Lukla, head to a teahouse and take a rest. Later in the evening, get together with your crew members and celebrate the completion of one of your best and challenging journeys. There will be Sherpa brew and lots of singing and dancing.

Thank your crew for tipping them. They have helped you carry your load and guided you through the inhospitable terrain. A small monetary gift is nothing to what they have helped you achieve. Overnight in Lukla.

Day 29: Fly back to Kathmandu (1300m). 35 minutes flight

Today your legs get a break as you only have to trek to Lukla Airport and fly back to Kathmandu, which is only about 10 minutes walking. In the evening we will have dinner at one of the authentic Nepali restaurants.

Day 30: Rest and shopping day in Kathmandu

Day 31: Departure to the Airport

Today, we will send you to the Airport approximately 3 hours before your scheduled flight.

Gallery


Included in the price

  • Airport pickups and drops in a private vehicle
  • 3-star hotel accommodation in Kathmandu with breakfast
  • Teahouse accommodation during the trek
  • Tented accommodation during the climbing
  • All meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner) during the trek and climbing
  • Farewell dinner
  • All ground transportation on a comfortable private vehicle as per the itinerary
  • Domestic flights (Kathmandu- Lukla -Kathmandu)
  • English speaking, trained and experienced trekking and climbing guide
  • Porter service (2 trekkers: 1 porter)
  • Staff costs including their salary, insurance, equipment, domestic airfare, food and accommodation
  • Down jacket and sleeping bag (to be returned after trip completion)
  • Duffel bag and trekking map
  • All necessary paper work; trekking and climbing permits for Mera & Island
  • Good quality tents and kitchen utensils for camping
  • Mountaineering (climbing) equipment
  • Medical kit (carried by your guide)
  • All government and local taxes

Not included in the price

  • Nepal Visa fee (bring accurate USD cash and two passport size photographs)
  • International airfare to and from Kathmandu
  • Lunch and Dinner in Kathmandu
  • Excess baggage charges
  • Extra night accommodation in Kathmandu because of early arrival, late departure, and earlier return from the mountain (due to any reason) than the scheduled itinerary
  • Travel and rescue insurance
  • Personal expenses (phone calls, internet / Wi-Fi, laundry, bar bills – tea/coffee, hot chocolate, juice, beer, battery recharge, extra porters, bottled or boiled water, shower etc.)
  • Tips for guides and porters

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