9th April – 27th May 2015
North West Ridge
Makalu or “Big Black” is situated just 19km South East from Everest in the Makalu-Barun National Park bordering Tibet. This 5th highest mountain in the world was first climbed in 1955, however, few expeditions today climb this mountain due to its tough technical demands on the summit pyramid. The Makalu-Barun National Park is a remote wilderness with few comfort services available compared to neighbouring Sagarmatha National Park. Hence, this expedition has additional challenges and difficulties; attempting Makalu is a considerable undertaking amongst 8000m peaks.
The route begins with a flight into Tumlingtar (285m), a town at the base of the hills that climb into Makalu-Barun National park. We will then drive to our trailhead in Chichila. The journey from this point is a 9-day route on foot through villages and subtropical forests, descents ascents of the Arun valley, and hikes over a series of passes including Shipton La pass (4200m) to finally reach Makalu base camp. We will take a few days to rest and acclimatise at base camp before starting our rotation rounds on the mountain. Using the route of the first ascent, we will ascend via the North West ridge. From Makalu base camp, we will place 5 camps on the mountain beginning with an advanced base camp located just across the glacier moraine. The route between Camp 1 to Camp 3 climbs between seracs and crevasses with sections of steep mixed climbing. Camp 4 to the summit is a significant day that involves negotiating a steep ice band, crevasses, a 300m gully and an exposed summit ridge.
Given the gravity and difficulty of this expedition, you must have extensive climbing skills, a considerable level of experience in the Himalayas and excellent fitness to join this expedition. Preferably with experience of an 8000m expedition.
Summit the 5th highest mountain in the world
Challenging 8000m technical climb
Varied and remote trek through the Makalu-Barun National Park
Day 2 -3
In Kathmandu (preparation)
Fly to Tumlingtar, drive to Chichila
Trek to Num
Trek to Seduwa
Trek to Tashi Gaon
Trek to Khongma and acclimatisation
Trek to Mumbak via Shipton La pass
Trek to Yangri Kharka
Trek to Shershong and acclimatisation
Trek to Makalu base camp
Acclimatisation and puja in Makalu base camp
Trek to Advanced base camp acclimatisation
Climb and summit Makalu
Pack up camp
Helicopter to Kathmandu