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Overnight destination – Chele (Elevation 3050m)
Estimated walking time 6 hours
So you have arrived at kagbeni and are starting your trek, If you have broken the route down as we did then you will have an easy day to break you in.
Leaving Kagbeni you follow the Mustang Khola (Re-Named kali Gandaki), sometimes following the river along the bottom of the gorge and sometimes on paths above it, Passing through nice Tibetan villages like Tangbe, We lunched at Chhuksang where there is a small lodge (Our lunch was provided by our cook) and then a short walk to our overnight halt of Chele (Accommodation and food also available)
Updated Apr 10, 2008
The first and probably most important thing to write about is the costs involved in Trekking in Upper Mustang as this is what puts a lot of people off going there !!
By far the biggest expense is the trekking permit which currently costs $700 for 10 days, and should you so choose to extend this, you can do for an additional $70 per day for up to a total of 4 days. Making 14 days in total.
However as long as you plan your trip well there is no need for these extra days as 10 days is sufficient time to trek in to Lo Manthang, spend a full day there to se the sights and then trek out again.
The next biggest cost is the support team, you have several choices of which way to organise this, The easiest is to join an organised trip, however this wasn’t my preferred choice as I wanted to trek with one friend, trek at our own pace, choose our own route, plan our own nightly halts and stops and eat what and when we anted to eat. So this is what we did.
We picked our dates that we wanted to trek, organised our own support team and had them meet us in Kagbeni on a specified date and walked in independently to meet them. We Trekked for the 10 days in Upper Mustang with this team then after the trek, again walked out independently.
For us this worked well, although as there was only two of us in our “Group” and we had a staff of seven Nepali’s looking after us (Guide, Cook, Cooks Boy, and four porters) this wasn’t necessarily the cheapest option.
A third possibility is that it is now just about possible to trek in independently as there is now basic accommodation available in most of the villages that you are likely to stay in. You would in all probability have to take a guide with you as the maps and guide book still aren’t as good as they might be, you would also be advised to take in some food with you as what is available is what the locals are eating – To survive on Dhal Baht is doable but hardly ideal. It also might well be advisable to take a light weight tent with you as if there is no accommodation available it would be better to have a plan “B”
The choice is yours, Much will depend on your own personal wishes / expectations and your budget as well as the time you have available – The most important thing is that you pick well and then enjoy your time in Upper Mustang as it really is a Unique place.
Written Apr 9, 2008
The following tips are deigned to give you an idea of the practicalities of Trekking in Upper Mustang, Costs, Time-Scales, Accommodation choices and the different ways of getting to kagbeni, the start point of the trek.
Written Apr 9, 2008