Day 1: Drive to Bhulbhule (794m) via Dumre and Besishar
We drive to Dumre on the Kathmandu-Pokhara highway. The travel takes about 4 hours. During the dry season, land rover and jeep run on the 42 km stretch from Durmre to Besisahar, the head quarters of Lamjung District. En-route there is good views of Lamjung Himal on the left and Himalchuli to the right. In another 2 hour drive we reach Besishar. We drive onward to Bhulbhule (794m). The road almost follow the trekking trail that climbs gently towards the village of Khudi situated on the Marsyangdi river. On the opposite side (west bank of the river) is Khudi where Khudi Khola (river) enters the main stream - Marsyangdi river that flows from the north. The walking trail is high above the river. As you turn round the corner you can get views of Himalchuli and Ngadi Chuli (Peak 29). These 6700 meter peaks appear very close.
Day 2: Trek to Syange (912m)
We take the trail up on the east bank of river, cross Ngadi Khola bridge after 1 and half hour and then climb the ridge for about 2 hour to Bahundanda (1,310m). Once again we descend towards the river near Syange; it should take us another 2 and half hour to reach Syange village. It is the northern limit of rice cultivation in Marsyangdi valley.
Day 3: Trek to Tal (1646m)
The trail now climbs slowly into increasingly narrow canyon. We cross the river on good suspension bridge near Chyamje and continue to ascend past canyon and then descend from the rock barriers of Ngadi Chuli (Peak 29) and Numun Bhanjyang. Tal is the gateway to Manang District. It has beautiful flat meadow with several Bhotia houses and a splendid waterfall coming off the lower reaches of Peak 29. It offers a superb site. The trail from Syanjge passes through Jagat and Chyamje. We travel further to Tal which is about 2 hour walk.
Day 4: Trek to Bagarchap (2165m)
We continue to ascend the east bank of Marsyangdi through the main george. The trails at this point are carved out of the vertical cliffs. We cross to the west side of river at Dharapani (1890 m) located just south of Thonje at the confluence of Marsyangdi and Dudh Khola. Instead of crossing the river to Thonje we turn west and follow the main trail that ascends on south side of Marsyangdi through forests and meadows. We continue to climb the steep trail for about one hour towards Namun Bhanjyang and to Tebang Meadow where there are series of lust pasture parched high above the river that provides excellent views of Manaslu and the lofty peaks in the north that are above the Larkya Pass.
Day 5: Trek to Chame (2714m)
The trails runs diagonally from Tebang through Thankchok village (2865m) and down towards the river to Kupar which lies above the junction of the Marsyangdi and Nar river that flows from the north. There is a Police check point ay Chame. This is a short day walk (4 to 5 hour) to Chame.
Day 6: Trek to Pisang (3171m)
We cross the bridge on the Marsyangdi Khola to north side near the apple farm at Brathang (2744m). The covered bridge with a door in the middle was built by Tibetan Khampas who had camps very close to Marsyangdi. At this point we begin spectacular ascent to Pisang. Before reaching Pisang we walk through the valley that transit into the rain shadow similar to the terrain between Ghasa and Tukuche in the Kali Gandaki. Here the Trans Himalayan belt breaks its way through the main Himalayan range between Annapurna II and Manaslu. There are several good places to stay at Pisang village. For camper there are many choices.
Day 7: Trek to Manang (3537m)
As we move on the higher terrain becomes easy. The trail passes through forests and small ridge at the altitude of 3445 meter. Way below, the terrain stretches into upper Manang Valley. The southern part of this valley has the wall of Annapurna II (7937m), IV (7525m), and III (7555m). The prominent peak like Gangapurna (7455m) and Tarke Kang known as Glacier Dome (7193m) are in the west. And just south at a distance we can see the sharp rock peak; it is the Great Barrier. The basin that has Tilicho Lake (7193m) is not visible at the head of the valley. To the north is Thorung La (5416m) and Thorungtse (6483m) that makes a formidable barrier to the plateau in Tibet. From this view point we descend to cross a plain and pass by Hongde airstrip (3280m). We walk further to Sabje Khola and to Braga. Braga village, made in the cliff, have several monasteries and excellent camp site in the fields below the village.
Day 8: Acclimatization day at Manang (3537m)
Stay at Manang to acclimatize your body in the thin air. It is enjoyable to stay at Manang. There are splendid views of the mountain range from Manang. It is a large village situated on an elevated place adjacent to huge glacier descending from Tarke Kang and Gangapurna; a beautiful emerald lake lies at its foot. You may take excursion to the lake which is about 3 hours to the north from Braga (4818 m). It is interesting to visit Manang Gompa or Khangsar (3740m) on the trail to Tilicho Lake.
Day 9: Set up Base Camp (5000m)
We walk slowly as we continue to climb high terrain. Just before Yak Kharka (grassland/pasture) and Churi Ledar we follow a tributary of the Jargeng Khola to the east into a valley to set up our base camp.
Day 10: Set up High Camp (5450m)
We make a high camp on the North West shoulder of the peak.
Day 11: Climb Chulu West (6419m)
Early in the morning we attempt for the summit on this day and descent to base camp.
Day 12. Extra day for weather
An extra day has been allowed for weather or other contingencies.
Day 13: Trek to Ledar (4230m) and to Thorang Phedi
After the climb we return back to the main trail and walk gradually through Yak Kharka (grassland/pasture) and Churi Ledar. The trail turns northwest up the tributary valley of the Jargeng Khola. It is sometimes possible to see herds of blue mountain sheep along the cliffs. We ascend to Phedi for an overnight stay before the pass.
Day 14: Cross Thorang pass (5335m) and descend to Muktinath (3760m)
Early morning we make steep ascend for about 2 hours to the rock ledge and head to north at 4590 meter then follow the trail to the summit of Thorung La. At this point you can see beautiful views of the Annapurna range to the south and the Mukut Himal bordering Dolpo to the west. The peak that lies immediately to the north of the pass is Thorungtse; to the south is an unnamed peak (6625m). After crossing the pass we descend the steep trail for about three hours to Muktinath. You can get to see splendid views of Dhaulagiri and Tukuche peak. Muktinath is one of the most important pilgrimage sites for Hindus and Buddhist alike. It is mentioned in the classic Hindu epic, the Mahabharata, and one may see pilgrims bathing in the holy water flowing from the 108 carved spouts that surrounds the Vishnu Temple located in a grove of sacred poplars. Muktinath is also home to many ethnic Bhote (Tibetans). The temple is holy to the Buddhist as well. Inside the temple the fire burns in a stream of water.
Day 15: Trek to Jomsom (2713 m)
We continue to make gradual descend through fields and poplar groves. The trail to the Kaligandaki valley is steep. Finally we reach the valley floor at Eklebhatti (2774m). We follow the Kalagandaki river valley towards south to Jomsom district headquarters of Mustang region. Jomsom has a large settlement with a 'stol' airstrip, police station and bank. It is the main center in this part of the Himalayan belt. This part of the Kali Gandaki Valley is called the Thak Khola because it is prominently inhabited by Thakalis - an ethnic group who are known for their enterprising and ambitious trading. They used to dominate the salt trade with Tibet in this region. After salt trade is over they started running sleeping lodges along the trek route.
Day 16: Fly to Pokhara
After breakfast fly to Pokhara. Stay overnight in Pokhara.
Day 17: Fly to Kathmandu:
After breakfast fly to Kathmandu.
Note: The schedule stops as shown above are a guideline only. It may change due to logistic reason and other condition like weather, etc. that are beyond our control. The flight from the remote mountain airstrip at Jomsom is subject to weather and technical condition. All flights are in early morning. Normally in winter the thick fog in Kathmandu and Pokhara airport in the morning may delay flight to the mountain airstrips. Trek around Annapurna is one of the most popular treks. There are several good quality lodge accommodations on the trail. Two nights before and three nights after the trek in Kathmandu is suggested to allow for flight delay.