The Manaslu Trek forms a section of the Great Himalaya Trail. In terms of access, accommodation and terrain it is perhaps the best section to choose to get on the Great Himalaya Trail. See below a route over view map, some recommendations for this trek and an outline itinerary for the Manaslu / Ganesh Himal Great Himalaya Trail section. Don’t forget to review the option of visiting Tsum Valley for a few days if you have the time.
From Robin Boustead on the greathimalayatrail.com:
In the centre of Nepal are two trekking gems, the Ganesh and Manaslu Himals, and both are the country’s best-kept secrets. Many would argue that the Manaslu Circuit trail is the best general trek in the country, with colourful cultures and dramatic valleys against a backdrop of classic Himalayan peaks. The Ganesh Himal is one of the least visited regions in Nepal, and offers the adventurous trekker some wonderful opportunities for genuine exploration.
Shawn Lichter on thegreathimalayatrail.org
If you were going to recommend a part of the trek for somebody with a shorter time available, which bit would it be?
I felt like the link up of the Annapurna Circuit and Manaslu Trek had the perfect balance of Nepali culture and mountain scenery while also being logistically easy to get to and from the trail. There are plenty of trekker accommodations and if you are heading east-west, both the climbs over the Larkya La and Thorong La are gradual enough to allow for plenty of time to acclimatize. I felt this area was also a huge transition zone in regards to the landscape. The Nepal you see in Jagat on the Manaslu Circuit will be vastly different from the Nepal you will see in Jomsom on the completion of the Annapurna Circuit.
Tsum Valley Trek side trip
Howard and Sue Dengate recommend this trip:
The remote Tsum Valley side-trip should not be missed. In nine trips to Nepal this was the absolute highlight, with strong, friendly, hospitable people, a living Buddhist culture and untouched wildlife because of Buddhist prohibitions on hunting. Tsum comes from the Tibetan work ‘Tsombo’, which means vivid and we can only agree. The people are poor, since they have been bypassed by development for centuries, but this means their unique culture has remained intact.
As my wife said: “Tsum Valley was FANTASTIC. To be honest, I wasn’t expecting it to be very different from where we’d already been but as soon as we made that right turn off the main track it suddenly seemed we were entering a hidden valley full of untouched forest so beautiful we called it the Garden of Eden.”
Great Himalaya Trail Itinerary
A good place to start to work out your own itinerary for the GHT would be the World Expeditions GHT Itinerary brochure (PDF 1.3MB) as they developed the first commercial trek of the route in Nepal.
Also great is Prem Rai’s itinerary posted on his blog: MANASLU–GANESH HIMAL–MESOKANTO PASS THRO’ APRIL 13 – MAY 15/2011
The following table shows you the number of days walking from Syabru Besi to Kagbeni and the number of hours planned in. This could be accelerated if done tea-house only, though there is little formal tourism infrastructure in the first section, so carry your sleeping bag.
|Trek day||Full GHT Trek day number
|1||94||Syaphru to Gatlang (2238m), walk aprox. 4.5hrs.|
|2||95||To Somdang (3258m/6hrs)|
|4||97||To Lapa Khola (1258m/5.5hrs)|
|5||98||Nauban Kharka (2750m/7hrs)|
|7||100||To Jagat (1340m), 6.5hrs.|
|8||101||To Philim (1570m), walk aprox. 4hrs.|
|9||102||To Deng (1860m), walk aprox. 5hrs.|
|10||103||To Namrung (2630m), walk aprox. 5hrs.|
|11||104||To Sama (3520m), walk aprox. 6hrs.|
|12||105||To Samdo (3875m), walk aprox. 3hrs|
|14||107||To Larkye Base Camp (4460m), walk aprox. 3hrs.|
|15||108||Cross Larkye La (5140m) to Bimtang (3590m) 8-10hrs.|
|16||109||To Dharapani (1865m), walk aprox. 7hrs.|
|17||110||To Chame (2675m), walk aprox. 5hrs.|
|18||111||To Pisang (2675m/4hrs)|
|20||113||To Yak Kharka (4050m), walk aprox. 4hrs.|
|21||114||To Thorong Pedi (4450m), walk aprox. 4hrs.|
|22||115||Cross Thorong La (5380m), to Muktinath, walk aprox. 9hrs.|
|23||116||To Kagbeni (2810m), walk aprox. 4hrs.|