Note: The 11-day variant is the same route as the 9-day variation, only in a more leisurely pace, thus allowing more time to visit the authentic villages and the monastery.
Number of days: 9 (11 days)
Highest camp: 3350 m (Tinsang La)
Highest point: 3815 m (Yerse)
Day by day:
From Kathmandu we drive by bus along Bhaktapur over the Arniko Highway (in Tibet) and along the Sun Kosi (river Kosi =) through the market town of Charikot to Dolakha (1700 meters). It is a nice village with the Hindu temple Dholakha Bhimsen overlooking the holy Gauri Shankar (7145 meters).
After the wake-up call with tea and washing water we set off for the first walking day. We follow the beautiful woods on the west bank of the Bhote Khosi (= river in Tibet), which is also called Tamba Kosi. Sometimes we just walk along the river (watch out for monkeys in the river bed!) The mountain slopes are not steep and villages, rice terraces, and forests complete the friendly character of the valley. We lunch close to the Gumbu Khola, another tributary of the Bhote Kosi, near the village Biguti. Biguti is a nice village where the merchandise lies on the street. Just before Shigati we pass the office of the Development Eco Himal Project. This is an Austro-Nepalese project for development in the area.
Higher during the trip we will see the Rolwaling mountains. After the suspension bridge at Shigati over the tributary Sangawa Khola we leave the valley (which runs into Tibet) and follow the path in a northwest direction to the camp site on the banks of the Sangawa Khola. (1000m, 5 hours)
Up to the lunch spot, the path goes up and down (Nepali flat), but always along the banks of the Sangawa Khola to the suspension bridge. This stage leads through a beautiful subtropical forest. Slowly we walk upstream to the lunch spot at an altitude of about 1350 meters. Sometimes we pass friendly and cheerful monks on their way to and from Bigu Gompa, which we will visit a few days later.
At sunrise we enjoy a beautiful light show on the flanks of Ama Bamare and surrounding mountains. After we descend to the suspension bridge over the Sangawa Khola we are back in the village Amatal. Then we follow the 'Nepali flat' path to the suspension bridge over the Amatal Khola. After the suspension follows a steep path up. Sometimes via stone stairs, through terraces, and through rice, millet and maize fields. The higher we get, the better the views of the beautiful surroundings, but from Amatal we cannot see Bigu Gompa. Then, at an altitude of about 2500 meters, the landscape is slightly flatter and we see the gompa with its buildings, surrounded by low walls.
Possibility for a resting day...
From the gompa we go down through a steep downhill path to Rupthang (2300 m) and from there up to the Tinsang La. For the last time in this valley we cross a suspension bridge over the Amatal Khola (2300m). After the bridge, we can see the Numbur in the west southwest.
On the ridge of La Tinsang we go on to the top of the Yerse (3815m). A good path to the saddle, then a zig zag up to the top (2 hours). On the Yerse we have a superb view: overlooking Langtang, the Shisa Pangma, the Chobo Bomara, the transition to Tibet, Gaurishankar and over the shoulder of this mountain we see the flat summit of Cho Oyu. After this morning trip we descend in 1 hour and 15 minutes to the camp. After lunch we descend steep, later on gradually down to the campsite at Dholangse. (2400m, 4 hours 3)
Beyond the Gompa of Dholangse we walk to the west over two mountain ridges and cross two tributaries of the Sun Kosi. In Pading is a beautiful bridge and a high waterfall. We lunch in a rice field near three small watermills. After lunch we continue through villages and rice paddies. It is not a heavy stage and after almost 3 hours we arrive at the Batas Danda (Danda = ridge), a beautiful camp site high above Simle. At night, the tips can be handed to the porters and staff, followed by a party with local drink, song and dance ... (2300m, 4 hours)
Today we descend to the busy village of Barabise. Our bus to Kathmandu will pick us up and in 4 hours we are back in the capital. (900m, 1.5 3 hours).