Overview The Dudhkunda Lake trek is a mesmerizing journey that takes trekkers to the sacred Dudhkunda Lake, nestled at an altitude of 4,610 meters (15,125 feet) in the Solu region of Nepal. This off-the-beaten-path trek also offers a unique combination of natural beauty, cultural exploration, and spiritual significance. Starting from Jiri, the trek follows a scenic trail through terraced fields, dense forests, and picturesque Sherpa villages. The route also offers breathtaking views of snow-capped peaks, including Everest, Makalu, and Kanchenjunga, among others. As trekkers ascend towards Dudhkunda Lake, the landscapes transform into rugged terrains, and the air becomes crisp and…
As you fly into Kathmandu, you’ll have beautiful views over the valley, the Himalaya, and of the terraced fields below. After going through customs, a representative will be waiting to guide you through the initial culture shock of Kathmandu’s narrow, winding streets and get you settled into your hotel. Once you’ve settled in, head out and visit one of Kathmandu’s cultural highlights. In the evening, the tourist hub of Thamel is a good place to grab your first meal, with a variety of restaurants to chose from offering both Western and local Nepali dishes.
Kathmandu has a special atmosphere during the early morning hours when the city is slowly coming to life yet not too chaotic. It’s a great time to walk and explore the streets or have a chai overlooking one of the local courtyards or durbar squares. There are a number of ways you can spend the day given the many incredible sights around the Kathmandu Valley. Later in the evening, head out for dinner at one of the city’s great eateries, or your specialist can arrange a home-cooked dinner with a local family.
After your short flight to the little airstrip at Phaplu, you can take a jeep and drive towards the ridgeline to the south at Dhap where you start your trek. As you near Sigane you can see mountains coming into view which you will get to know very well on this trek. These are the peaks of the Numbur Himal section of the Himalayan Range.
The trail from Sigane follows a road that is currently under construction for the first couple of hours. The first village is called Japre (2920m) and it is perched above a deep valley with lovely views of Everest and Numbur Himal. There’s a pretty little Gompa and Stupa here and you stay at a local tea house in the village.
From Japre, the trail climbs up to a grassy ridge at Bhulbhule. There’s one lodge with no name and great views of the Everest range from here. Soon after Bhulbhule, the trail splits and you take the right trail up towards Pikey Peak. Your trail passes some old yak herders houses and a long ‘Mani Stone’ wall before contouring around the hillside below Taklung Danda (ridge). You continue along a beautiful forested trail with many Rhododendrons and, as you leave the forest, it’s about 2 hours to Pikey Peak base camp.
There’s just one lodge here at 3,640 m, with some (draughty) rooms in a separate building, but you may be able to use the dining room to hang out in the warmth. It’s a short climb to the summit at 4,065 m but unless there’s an unusually clear evening it’s better to go to bed early and save the climb for sunrise.
The trail to the top of Pikey Peak starts from behind the lodge and follows a gradual slope to the summit, strewn with prayer flags. It’s important to start before dawn to reach the top for sunrise as the views from the top are breathtaking. If the weather is clear you will be rewarded with views stretching from Annapurna to Kanchenjunga, it is truly amazing!
From the top of Pikey, you trek north down a ridgeline to Jase Bhanjyang, where a good crew will have breakfast ready for you. Leaving Jase Bhanjyang you have a few options for your descent to Junbesi, we highly recommend the stunning “Shortcut trail” which leaves the ridge shortly after Jase and descends steeply through spectacular old growth forest to Taktor (at approximately 3,007 m).
Here you meet the Everest Base Camp trail coming from Jiri, this means the tea houses are a little more developed and it’s one of the few times you might meet a few other trekkers.
From Taktor it is a couple of hours on a lovely trail to Junbesi (2,675 m), a traditional Sherpa village considered a cradle of Sherpa culture and architecture. The Sherpas regard the Solu Khumbu as a ‘Beyul’ or sacred valley and there are many Buddhist monasteries. Here, in this remote part of Nepal bordering Tibet, Buddhism survives with a deep faith and resonance. Junbesi is a large village and has a number of comfortable tea houses to choose from.
This morning you follow the river once more, meandering through fields and flowers, towards a very special place, Thupten Choling, home to 800 monks living in tiny cottages dotting the hill behind the main Gompa. His Holiness the late Trulsik Rinpoche founded the monastery in the 1960’s after fleeing Tibet. Thupten Choling houses, feeds, and educates a large population, 80% of whom are Tibetan refugees. This is one of the first contact points for the many Tibetans who find their way into Nepal each year. Although most refugees continue on to India, about 40 nuns per year stay on and join the monastery.
From here you continue up the valley for another hour to your first campsite where you are joined by the full camping crew for the first time. You will now be camping each night until you reach Taksindu.
As you will be ascending steadily in the next few days, it is important to pay attention to how you’re your body is acclimatising. Your visit to Pikey Peak earlier in the trek has helped considerably with your acclimatisation, however, do pay attention to any of the early signs of altitude sickness and make sure you drink plenty of water. Today takes you through a magical forest up towards a pass near where you will spend the night.
Over the next two days, you follow a ridge bringing you ever closer to the snow-covered peaks of the Rowaling Himal. It is hard to imagine, but this lonely trail teems with pilgrims at festival time! You will most likely have the whole landscape to yourself and camp in meadows, surrounded by rock faces and yak grazing.
Dudh Kunda Lake (4560m), at the foot of Mt. Numbur and Karyalung Glacier, is believed to be the abode of Lord Shiva. The full moon in August sees pilgrims flock to the lake as Buddhist and Hindu devotees believe that taking a dip in the icy lake will absolve them of their sins. It only takes a couple hours walking from your last camp and you can spend the rest of the day at leisure in this incredibly stunning place.
oday is a day to rest and/or explore this amazing place. This truly is the high point of your trek, so we recommend you take your time here to really soak up the beauty of this place.
After a morning Kora (circumambulation of the lake) you retrace our steps to Thadarbug and rejoin the classic pilgrim route towards the Taksindu La. You follow the ridgeline south and camp in one of the herder’s camps along this trail.
This morning you continue down the ridgeline towards the main Jiri to Everest trail at Taksindu La, from where you again have great mountains views. A short descent takes you to the Taksindu Monastery and the village where you can stay in a local tea house.
Today you leave the main trekking route again and take a beautiful path down to Phaplu through the forest. You have the option to hike up to Chiwong Gompa, perched high on a cliff overlooking the valley. This monastery was founded in 1923 and has magnificent celebrations for the Mani Rimdu festival in autumn. You continue on down into Phaplu and celebrate the completion of a great trek in your cosy tea house in the village.
Today you bid farewell to the mountains and take the flight back into the Kathmandu Valley. Enjoy your last moments in Kathmandu with breakfast in a café, a city stroll, and/or souvenir shopping. A representative will meet you at your hotel and drive you to the airport for your return flight home. It’s good to be at the airport at least two hours prior to departure.