“FROM LAKE RHONA (569 meters) IN TASMANIA, AUSTRALIA TO LAKE PHOKSUNDO (3600 meters) IN DOLPO, NEPAL 13th Sept to 2nd October 2013”
Our group of five has just completed a trek to Dolpo organized by Nepal Gateway Trekking Pvt Ltd and led by Rajendra Thapa.
We flew from Nepalgunj to Jumla (2300 m) to commence our 19 day trek.
The route on the first 3 days was through the villages of Gothichaur, the Khampas village of Chotra (3010m) then branched off the main track over the Bharbhare Lagna – our first pass at 4297m. The route then descended through beautiful forests of beech and oak to Huricot for a camp in the grounds of a Bon Monastery.
A more challenging route was ahead as we entered the Shey-Phoksundo National Park, and our first pass over 5000 metres- Kagmara Pass, to the spectacular Phoksundo Lake . This part of the trip was most spectacular with sitings of Blue sheep. A rest day at Phoksundo then over the high passes of Baga La 5110 m and Numa La 5300 m.
The route continued to Dho Tarap with its Buddhist temples then followed the magnificent gorges of Tarap Khola to join the Thuli Bheri River at Laisicap and then on to Dunai for our final day.The itinerary was well designed by Raj our guide, with landscapes of great variety and interest.
Wildlife observed included flocks of Blue sheep (largest group was 24 animals), large numbers of Himalayan griffon vultures, and great variety of other birds.There was an abundance of wild flowers including purple poppies, primulas, some rare and occasional rhododendrons in flower, saussurea near the high passes, amaranthus, gentians, asters.
Deciduous trees such as beech, oak, birch were in their autumn colors.We were impressed by the magnificent ancient juniper trees and blue pine forests. Raj had a very efficient and friendly crew and excellent food with none of our members having any illness from stomach problems -a credit to our cook and helpers for good hygiene in food preparation. None of our party had altitude sickness thanks to the care taken by Raj to ensure we did not climb to high altitudes too quickly.
We all appreciated the attention to detail and his extensive knowledge of landscape, customs of the local people, identification of many plants and his keen eyes to pick out flocks of blue sheep. We were very impressed by Raj’s care and concern for the welfare of the guests and crew. We highly recommend Raj and his company, Nepal Gateway Trekking to anyone who is looking for an adventurous and enjoyable trekking holiday to such a wild and beautiful region as Dolpo.