Avoid the Manaslu road building, hike the east side
This from Sonam Lama of the Tsum Valley Homestay project. He and his team wanted to check out the alternatives to the traditional route of the Manaslu Trek, via Sotikhola, Machhakhola, Tatopani etc. If you didn’t already know, a road is being built there and as far as Machhankhola (Nov 2018) you’re going to have a dusty hike in parts.
So Sonam and team took the east side of the valley, and you can follow this route on the zoomable Manaslu map. Sonam wrote the below, and in summary it is a good alternative for small groups.
“Our assessment of the alternative trail via Manbu – Yartsa – Kasigaun – Keraunja – Runchet – Hulchuk – Dobhan was worthwhile. We also met many trekkers and guides wanting to use the trail next season.
We have got lots of photos of village ways of life: terrace farming (of corn, millet, wheat, mustard), the lists of food available: beans, pop-corn (not like the one in cinema!) and types of accommodation: basic, there are two small hotels with capacity of 6-8 people in Manbu, possible home stays in Kasigaun and Keraunja. Tents are suggested but it is encouraged to have food in families houses.
Like many parts of Nepal, Gurung and Ghale people offer exceptional hospitality!
You can contact Sonam
for more information or ask your guide about it. It is likely that many guides will not know and prefer to stick to what they do know. But check with the company and see if a tent can be carried for the first 3 days or so.