Ramdung and Parchemo
- A great trekking and climbing holiday in the Himalaya of Nepal
- Trek across the Tesi Lapcha into the Khumbu
- Climb two superb alpine climbs in Nepal
- Trek the remote Rolwaling valley
- Nepal trekking peaks of Ramdung (5925m) and Parchemo (6187m)
The Rolwaling is a remote valley running west to east just south of the border with Tibet. When compared with the popular Everest and Annapurna regions, this valley offers the opportunity to visit the home of the Sherpa people in an environment basically unchanged for centuries. There are 2 designated ‘trekking peaks' in this high valley - Ramdung (5925m.) and Parchemo (6187m.) both offering fine viewpoints. This trekking and climbing holiday offers just about every experience possible in Nepal - from the quiet and relatively easy approach, through the terraced farmland of the Bhote Kosi and Sun Kosi valleys, to the high and remote alpine valley and glacial lakes of the upper Rolwaling and ending in the popular Everest region with its high altitude bars, cafes and hot tubs!. On top of this, there is the spectacular open mountain scenery which is encountered during the ascents of both Ramdung and Parchemo. Mountain panoramas include the magnificent Gauri Shankar, Menlungste, Everest, Makalu and all of the Khumbu summits. Each of these peaks involves strenuous, but technically easy climbing and only a single ice-axe is required.
The holiday begins with a scenic drive through the foothills from Kathmandu to Charikot. Three days of trekking takes us northwards across lovely terraced hillsides to the start of the Rolwaling Valley at Simigaon. Ascending the Rolwaling we pass through the Sherpa settlement of Beding before reaching the high summer pastures of Na Gaon where the narrow valley opens up into a wide bowl, giving us our first taste of open, mountain scenery after the confines of the lower valley. We spend rest days at Beding and at Na Gaon, which helps with acclimatisation, before proceeding to our basecamp below the Yalung La. Here, we have allowed more time for acclimatisation and for the optional ascent of Yalung Peak (5650m). The summit of Ramdung lies only 1000 metres above basecamp, but because of the distance involved and the nature of the route, we establish a further camp in a spectacular position high up on the glacier below the summit ridge. Having climbed Ramdung, the trek is only just beginning to get into its swing, as we intend to leave the Rolwaling Valley by way of the magnificent Tesi Lapcha into the Khumbu Valley. The crossing of this pass presents one of the finest trekking challenges in the Nepal Himalaya. It begins with a difficult climb beside an icefall into the spectacular Upper Drolambu Glacier; a world of ice and snow which is completely surrounded by towering 7000-metre peaks. The crossing of the Tesi Lapcha itself is a fitting climax to this classic trek. Camping just beyond the pass, we take the opportunity to make a one-day ascent of Parchemo, a stunning peak which rises abruptly above the Tesi Lapcha. We then drop down into the Thame Valley and thence to Namche Bazaar and on to the high airstrip at Lukla. This is unquestionably one of the finest trekking and climbing holidays in the entire Himalaya.
For some fantastic ideas to extend your holiday in Nepal, from riding elephants in Chitwan to tours in Bhutan or Tibet - check out extensions
Is this holiday for you?
This holiday offers just about every kind of trekking you can expect to find in Nepal. The first few days we find ourselves tracing a way through terraced fields and villages, to reach the start of the Rolwaling Valley. From Simigaon we follow narrow tracks through forest and jungle to reach Beding. Above Beding we use yak herders trails to the high summer pastures. Between the basecamp for Ramdung and the high camp, some of the climbing is likely to be on snow, as is the ascent of Ramdung itself. The challenging, 3-day crossing of the Tesi Lapcha (including the one-day ascent of Parchemo) involves some very strenuous trekking over rough glacial moraine, as well as scrambling over rocks and sections of snow and ice. The guides will fix ropes on these sections. With the exception of the optional climb of Yalung Peak above Ramdung Basecamp (which does involve some rock scrambling) no technical climbing is involved. In terms of their technical difficulty, Ramdung and Parchemo would be considered 'easy' Himalayan peaks. However, these ascents, and also the climb up to the Tesi Lapcha are true mountaineering challenges, on account of the altitude and the remote location.