About Tibet Expedition
Annapurna Treks and Expedition Pvt. Ltd. runs Himalayan expeditions in Tibet as well as Nepal. Some mountains on the border of the two countries, like Mt Everest, can be climbed from either from the northern Tibet side or Nepal side.
Many adventurous mountaineers enjoy the approach to the mountains on the Tibet side as it is far less commercialized and gives you the thrill of being a pioneer. Like the early mountaineers, no helicopter rescue is available. Although Annapurna Treks and Expedition Pvt. Ltd provides you with the same quality of camping gear as what is used on the Nepal side, the psychological support of being surrounded by other expedition teams is not there.
Expeditions starting from Tibet side will have a cultural dimension that is in itself an adventure. High on the Tibetan Plateau live the hardy Mongolian tribe that follow the ancient Buddhist culture. The Mountaineering Association of the Chinese Government only began issuing permits to foreign mountaineers since the 1970s. Among the most popular mountains which are climbed from Tibet are Mt. Everest, 8848, Cho Oyu, 8201m, Shishapangma, 8035, Lakhapa Ri and Gurlamandata.
Annapurna Treks and Expedition Pvt. Ltd. has over 10 years of experience running expeditions in Tibet. We are well familiar with the process of getting climbing permits from the Chinese Mountaineering Association, clearing customs at the border, and arranging for a Chinese Guide and Liaison officer for the expedition. We take pride in well organized expeditions. Our own trusted Sherpa Climbing Guide, cooks and support staff have experience of coordinating the local Tibetan support staff. Local yaks are also hired to carry the gear for the expedition.
Reaching the Region
The drive from Kathmandu to Base Camp is an exciting adventure through medieval Tibetan towns and rugged landscape with stark beauty. It follows the Friendship Highway to Kodari, 1800m, at the border of Tibet. We cross the border into China and pass through, Zanghmu, 2800m, Nyalam, 3800m, the Lalung Leh pass, 5050m, and Tingri 4350m. Logisticaly the distance of just over 300 km could be covered in two days, but since the altitude increases from 1400m in Kathmandu to 4350m in Tingri, acclimatization stops are necessary. It’s a slow and bumpy drive up to the Chinese (Everest) Base Camp, 5150m, giving us ample time to enjoy the superb scenery of the north side of Everest and Cho Oyu. The Chinese liaison offices are stationed at this Base Camp. This is actually the Base Camp for expeditions to Everest North, Cho Oyo and Shishapangma. From here the North Face of Everest appears very close, but it is still 19km away. We may explore the nearby Rongbuk Monastery. The yak team meets us here and we organize our loads for the two-day-30 km trek to Advanced Base Camp.
This is the end of the road. All vehicle assisted evacuations start here. There are no helicopter rescues or evacuations on the north side or for any mountain in Tibet. The road has been upgraded so there is less risk of delay than in previous years. That said, it may be blocked for some days in the rainy or melt off seasons by mud slides and rock falls.
Lhasa option: If you want to experience some Tibetan culture while acclimatizing, it is also possible to fly to Lhasa and travel by road to the Chinese Base Camp. You could add on a tour of the ancient city of Lhasa and spend time exploring the monasteries and history of Tibet. We spend two nights in Lhasa and a night in Shigatse, before arriving into Everest Base Camp. It is a splendid flight from Kathmandu to Lhasa as it flies right over the Mount Everest massif