General Info

Some useful information to trekkers, a guide to preparation before leaving home.

Health
Travelers to south east Asia and Nepal should take medical advice and start their inoculation program as soon as possible.

Please ensure that your doctor understands that you will be undertaking a vigorous walking holiday, sometime at altitude and normally some way away from medical facilities. Clients with existing conditions, which might affect them whilst on trek/tour should discuss these with their doctor and take advice accordingly.

Trekkers going above 12,000ft are advised to have a dental check up. Altitude seeks out weaknesses in fillings.

It is never too late to start some fitness training. Regular walking and using the stairs instead of the elevator or lift will help you enjoy your trek all the more.

We recommend you to visit Ciwec Clinic site to know more about precautionary inoculation whilst visiting Nepal
http://ciwec-clinic.com/

Visas
At the time of writing the following types of visa are available on request:

Period (Duration) Fee
For the first visit in a visa year
15 days multiple entry US$ 25
30 days multiple entry US$ 40
90 days multiple entry US$ 100

Visas are available through Nepalese Embassies world wide, or on arrival at Tribhuvan International Airport Kathmandu.

Travelers staging through other SE Asian countries are advised to check on Visa requirements.

Log on to http://www.nepalimmigration.gov.np/ for more details.

Insurance
In the unlikely event of an accident or serious illness whilst in trek helicopter evacuation may be necessary. Subsequent medical treatment either in hospital or at an international clinic may be expensive. We recommend all the travelers/trekkers to have adequate insurance which should cover evacuation by helicopter in case of emergency, medical treatment, medical repatriation, extra expenses due to flight cancellation, landslides or political unrest which are beyond our control.

Tuning into Nepal
Nepal has inspired a wealth of literature, from accounts of epic ascent on the mountains to culture and anthropological studies of Nepal’s unique heritage. There is a basic bibliography at the end of these notes. Novice trekkers and even old hands are encouraged to do some background reading before arriving. It will help put your trekking holiday into perspective.

Luggage
Clients should aim to have just two pieces of luggage whilst out on trek: A small day sac and duffle bag. The day sac is for your immediate needs throughout the day and would include: a water bottle, spare sweater, camera and a waterproof jacket etc. Try not to carry too much, 5 to 7 kgs being a reasonable weight. The duffle bag is for heavier items and spare clothes; it will be carried by a porter and should not weight over 15 kgs. If possible it should be of waterproof material and have a strong lateral zip which can be locked. We do have a number of such bags available on sale, refer our miscellaneous service. Sleeping bags and mattresses are carried separately by porter. Should you have additional equipment such as tripods or large cameras then we can arrange a personal porter to remain with you throughout the day. This will entail some additional cost. Note that excess luggage not required whilst on trek can be stored safely at your hotel. For most domestic flights the allowance is 15 kgs total which includes check in baggage and hand held carried bags. Excess baggage charges vary between $1 to $ 2 per kilogram.

First Aid Kit
Clients are requested to bring their there own kits, which might include:

Band aid plasters
Anti septic cream
Asprin/ paracetamol
Sun cream high protection factor, sun block
Lip slave
Elastic bandage for “Sahib’s knee”
Cough sweets.
Ask your doctor to advice on a broad-spectrum cure for stomach problems.

Our sirdars carry a small first aid kit primarily for the use of trek sherpas and porters.

Many trekkers feel that they should try and treat locals along the way. But the generally accepted medical view is that by treating locals westerners are creating a dependence and undermining local health care efforts. If one villager has a headache and is given an asprin then it won’t be long before the entire village goes down with a headache.

Whilst Packing
Please spare a thought for the litter disposal problem in Nepal. Cut out unnecessary packing and think twice about quantities of things you pack. Batteries and plastic packaging should be taken home with you as there is no means of disposing of this type of litter in Nepal.

Booking/cancellation policy
Once your arrangements are confirmed with us, you will receive a pro-forma invoice with payment instructions. We are flexible to the mode of payment and would liaise with you to come up with an arrangement convenient to you. However, we reserve the right to cancel your arrangements if we don’t receive initial payment as instructed/liaised with you.

Note: Traveller cheques are not accepted in Nepal

Cancellation policy:
30 days prior 50%
15 to 30 days prior 75%
Less than 15 days 100%

On arrival in Kathmandu
You will be met by our representative who will help you check in to your respective hotels, set a time for a pre trek briefing as convenient to you. Each briefing will be taken by a member of our staff who knows the area to which you are going and can advice you on all aspects of your trek. At this briefing clients may also have the opportunity to meet their sherpa staff, other members of their group and sort out any last minute problems.

Valuables and Money
It is advised to keep valuables, important documents, extra cash or additional credit cards not required on trek in your hotel’s safe deposit. How much money you should carry on trek is a matter of personal choice but we’ll talk this through during pre trek briefing and give you guidelines.

Weather pattern
The following weather patterns in Nepal are intended to give you an indication of when you should plan a particular trek and what you might expect to experience whilst on trek.

End September to December. Traditionally the most popular period for trekking. After the monsoon the weather tends to settle down, skies are clear and the views excellent. Most trekking areas will be open throughout this period but occasionally the high passes treks may attract late summer snow making the passes over 5,000 m difficult until mid October.

December to mid January. With the approach of winter, temperatures at altitude start dropping dramatically. The weather remains fine but unless groups specifically want to trek above 3,500m and are equipped to do so clients should be advised to aim for the following areas:

All treks out of Pokhara including the Annapurna Sanctuary, the Kali Khandaki valley, the foothills of Lamjung Himal.
Treks out of Gorkha including Panch Pokhari and the foothills of Ganesh Himal.
The Helambu valley.
Bigu Gompa and the Tingsang la.
Lower Solu Khumbu including treks out of Jiri and Phapflu.
Arrun Valley treks including the Milke danda.

C. Mid January through to end of February. Winter storms can produce a lot of snow and trekkers at this time of year would be advised to stay under 3,000m.

D. March through to mid April. Trekkers over this period should not to be too ambitious. Whilst areas like Langtang/Gosainkund, the Thorung la and the Gokyo valley may be open, treks should be planned with alternative routes in case passes and valleys are blocked. It is important that clients are aware of the possibility of re routing. Please note that Summit Nepal trekking will not take bookings for the following passes with a trek start date before 7 April:

Khagmara la, Namu la, Baga la, Charkha la – lower Dolpo.French col and Dhampus pass round Dhaulagiri.
Rupina la and Larkya la – Manasalu.
Ganju la and Tillman’s col – Langtang Himal.
Yalung la and Trashi lapcha – Rolwaling Himal.
Cho la, Mingbo la, Amphu lapcha – Khumbu.
Zatrala la, Mera la, Sherpani col – Makalu/Barun.
Mirgin la, Sinion la and Yallung la – Khanchenjunga.

Mid April through to end May. Now is the time to go for the trekking peaks and high passes. Mustang and Tibet are open. Lower lying treks will start to become uncomfortably hot and it is best to trek in areas over 3,000m.

June through to end September. During this period Dolpo and Mustang are at their best. Although the onset of the monsoon can disrupt travel by road and air, the patient trekker can reap huge rewards by choosing to visit at this time of year. For those who can afford the time to accept possible delays the Khumbu during the monsoon is one of Nepal’s best kept secrets.