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Dolpo: Land of the Snow Leopard - trekking in Nepal

14th August 2013 Print
Snow Leopard

As the trekking season gets under way in Nepal, Walks Worldwide has the perfect trip for serious walkers who also have a soft spot for wildlife: the 19-day Dolpo Land of the Snow Leopard trip, which takes place in the same area as the location of Eric Valli's classic film 'Himalaya'.

Situated in Nepal's north-west and bordering the Tibetan plateau, there is a genuine feeling of remoteness in Dolpo; there are no driveable roads, the region is sparsely populated and many of the locals of pure Tibetan race still practice the ancient Bonpo religion in a land of myths and legends.

The landscapes are dramatic rising from 1500m at their lowest to the 7381m summit of Churen Himal, with the village of Tokyu (4209m) reputedly being the world's highest permanently inhabited settlement.

Famously off-limits, Dolpo was visited with special permission in 1973 by Peter Matthiessen and his resulting novel ‘The Snow Leopard’ became an instant classic.

This is a very challenging trek for true Himalayan connoisseurs and an absolute must for those wanting to visit an unspoiled region of almost mythological standing.

After arriving in Kathmandu, the group will head for the first night’s stop in the Lazimpat district before taking a local flight to Nepalgunj close to the border with India, with the scenery becoming ever more Alpine with the snow-capped Kang Tokal on the horizon as the trail continues on to Lingdo.

The trek continues to ascend, day by day, passing mani walls, chortens, even monkeys, and climbing high above the Thuli Beri and across a suspension bridge to reach Laina Odar.

On day eight, the group will arrive into an area known to be frequented by Snow Leopard, which adds to thrill of trekking amongst these remote mountains and valleys.

At Dho Tarap the altitude passes the 4000m mark as the trek continues via Numa Base camp, before eventually beginning the descent all the way back to Juphal.

The trip departs on 7 September and 5 October and costs from £2395 pp (two sharing) which includes all land transportation, internal flights, 16-nights’ accommodation (4 hotels, 12 camping), all meals on trek, guide and porters, airport transfers for domestic flights, camping equipment (except sleeping/mat) and trekking permit. Flight-inclusive prices are available through Walks Worldwide on request.

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Snow Leopard