Himex runs its trip to Manaslu during the autumn climbing season, over a 45 day period, which enables us to have plenty of time for acclimatisation as well as factoring in any potential delays due to weather on the mountain.
The trip starts in Kathmandu where we spend 2 nights at the beautiful Hyatt hotel. During this time we will do a full kit check with the team, and we will have time to head into Kathmandu to buy any equipment that may still be needed.
From here we take a helicopter ride from the airport directly to the village of Samagon which is situated at 3,500 metres. We will aim to stay here for 3 or 4 days in one of the traditional tea houses, and we will look to do acclimatising treks in the surrounding valleys on each day, usually lasting 2-3 hours each.
Next we move on to basecamp (4,665m), which involves a 4-5 hour trek using the steep paths through the trees next to the hanging glaciers and icefalls. The Himex basecamp is an extremely slick operation, with the best facilities on the mountain, including dining tent, cooks tent, toilet facilities, solar and hydro-electric power and even a hot shower, all positioned away from any strong winds to ensure maximum comfort in your new home away from home.
Our climb up the mountain is via the North East face, using 4 camps along the way, starting with a 45-60 minute walk from basecamp to crampon point. From here it’s a 3 hour trip through the glacier following the fixed lines to camp 1 at 5,500m. This may prove tough the first time, but by the end of the trip you’ll amaze yourself with how much easier you find it.
The trip from camp 1 to camp 2 is a hard but rewarding day, climbing through steep slopes requiring close attention, and is expected to take anywhere from 5 hours or more until you arrive at camp at 6,300m. The views from camp 2 really are breath taking, and the peak of the mountain is getting visibly closer.