Trek to Shey Phoksundo lake in the far west corner of Nepal has its own charm. Walking up to lake through variety of terrain in a short time, you would traverse through beautiful forest that you have probably never seen before, an unruined atmosphere and a small patch of Bonpa people. Bonpa people are very rare indigenous people limited in Dolpa and are very few in numbers. They are very rich in culture and practice and yet till the day practice their age old culture which is not only fascinating but culturally shocking to the outer world.
Shey Phoksundo lake lies in the Shey Phoksundo national park which was established in 1981. The locals however call this lake Phoksumdo which means 3 stones which represents the 3 arms of the lake. The national park is home to different species of mammals, birds, reptiles, butterflies and vegetation. Some of the most prominent animals seen are blue sheeps and the snow leopard.
The trek is medium grade trek and elevation friendly but is very rural. Since the entire Shey Phoksundo national park is cut off from rest of the Nepal by various passess towards he south the resources, fooding and lodging remains very limited. The best way to embark on this trek is with tents, sleeping bags, food and kerosene. This is going to be one of its kind trek that you had never done before, in the rural that you have never seen before. Book this trek today and get it in unbeatable price!
|Trip Code: BT-120||Total Duration: 08 days|
|Destination: Off The Beaten Trails||Best Time: March - May & Sept - Dec|
|Trip Grade: Moderate||Group Size: Min. 2 Pax|
There are several flights in and out of Kathmandu and to Nepalgunj. The flight takes around 45 minutes and you will mostly fly over flat terrain once out of Kathmandu. Depending upon your will to explore Nepalgunj and upon the decision of the group, your flights will be booked as per your convenience. Overnight in Nepalgunj.
The flight takes around 35 minutes over the rugged terrain of Jumla and giving you with beautiful views of snow clad mountains on the either side. Once in Juphal, you will begin your Shey Phoksundo Trek on foot and you will embark on the only trail that makes its way through the fields of wheat and towards the thulo Bheri river. You will then cross the river and enter the premises of Shey Phoksundo National park. The trail climbs along Suli Khola; a wild emerald green stream that leads to Kageni in about an hour. About around an hour an half and through the forest and along the stream you will reach the settlement of Syangta. The trail is almost uphill from the very beginning and almost to the end of the day. From Syangta, the trail again climbs but this time through beautiful forest of pine, spruce, fir, Juniper and cypress and on top it climbs next to the emerald green stream all the way to Chhepka. Overnight in Chhepka.
The same beautiful setting prolongs on this day as well, the path continues through beautiful pine forest, birches and other broadleaf tree. Primarily, you will traverse through a gorge created by Phoksundo river which later opens to an exposed ridge with drops at either end. This is the only trail that you will follow all the way and the trail is surrounded by pine trees that climbs higher than the trail at all times. You will cross the river over wooden bridge several times and at times share the trail with dzopas; crossbreed of yak and cow. The first ever settlement you will reach is Ryachi which is as well pronounced as Rechi. Only after this place the trail gets a little broader but still climbs gradually to the final destination. Around above 2 and half hours from Ryachi, you will arrive at a boarding school for the local children and further to the final destination of the day Chunuwar. Overnight in Chunuwar.
The trail gets narrow, steep and sandy and it climbs for around 2 hours making it very difficult for you to climb. The climb takes you to a beautiful waterfall point which boasts amazing view of the surrounding. The waterfall is well known as Phoksundo waterfall as well as Suligadh waterfall and lies at an elevation of 3683 meters from the sea level. From here, the trail descends and reaches to Phoksundo river and in another 45 minutes from here you would reach to the village of Ringmo. This tiny village is adjacent to Shey Phoksundo Lake and right from the behind of this village soars snow capped mountains Norbung Kang (6,085 m), Byas Risi (5,416 m) and Kang Tokal (6,294 m). Overnight in Ringmo village.
After spending few extra moment by the shore of this spell binding lake, you will begin descending. Primarily, the trail is more flat and gradual uphill which later climbs steeply to the top of a pass. From the pass, you can get one last view of the widely spread Phoksundo Lake. The pass takes anywhere from 30 minutes to 45 minutes to cross and from here you trek steep downhill all the way to a river and further to the sandy basin of Chunuwar. Overnight in Chunuwar.
The trail immediately enters the forest out of Chunuwar and descends not so steeply. It should not take you over an hour and half for you to reach the village of Ryachi. This is an ideal spot to catch lunch as there are not many options on the Shey Phoksundo trek trail. The most difficult section of today’s trek is from Ryachi to Chhepka. The trail climbs and drops to the river frequently and to do so it takes around 3 hours. At the end of this section, you will soon notice the change in temperature and vegetation. The highland forest slowly makes way for bamboo groves and walnut trees. From Chhepka, you will walk for another hour to Syangta. 15 minutes beyond Syangta you will leave the forest behind and walk on rocky high mountain like terrain for another hour to reach Kageni. Overnight in Kageni.
On today’s day you will get back on the great himalayan trail trekking route. You start trekking south and follow Phoksundo Lake which is also known as Suligadh river. Following the river for around an hour takes you to a village namely Suligadh. From here on, you will cross the river time and again; first on a small wooden bridge, followed by a long suspension bridge, followed by Bhim bridge over the Thuli Bheri Bridge. From here, you walk on flat and dirt road to Rupagadh and Kalagauda. The trail gets narrow once again and makes its way through beautiful farm land of barley and wheat intermingling with trees of walnut, apricot and peach. From this very place, it is a very steep climb to Juphal. Overnight in Juphal.
You could either fly out today or will have to wait for a day to fly out of Juphal. However, the first flight is over mountain terrain and takes around 35 minutes to reach Nepalgunj. Depending upon the first flight, you will either fly out of Nepalgunj on the same day or the next day. Once in Kathmandu, you will be transferred to your hotel and hence, your Phoksundo Lake trek comes to an end.