The sixth highest peak of the world (8201m/26906ft) Cho Oyu stands for' Turquoise God’ which means the turquoise color of the peak in the afternoon sun from the Tibet side of the mountain. But in Nepal it is known as Qowowuyag by the Sherpas. The mountain lies in the Himalayas and is 20 km west of Mount Everest, at the border between China and Nepal. Though the expedition attempt was made by Eric Shipton in1952, an Austrian Herbert Tichy made the first successful ascent of Cho Oyu in 1954 with fellow Austrians Sepp Jochler and Helmut Heuberger.
Our sensitively designed 'Ace Cho Oyu Expedition' offers you an excellent opportunity for the climbers to extend their experience to extreme altitudes and is highly recommended as a first 8,000m Peak. Climbing Cho Oyu is one of the best practices for attempting the Everest. This is also one of the best attainable of the among world's highest mountains due to the lack of objective dangers in comparison to the other mountains. The terrain for this is uncomplicated, which makes the climbing assessable.
This trip starts from Kathmandu and ends in Kathmandu. It will be guided by our fully experienced Sherpa climbing guide. The indigenous Shepras were born in the Himalayas, reared in the Himalayas and involved in climbing and mountaineering occupation.
To begin this trip we fly from Kathmandu to Lhasa and spend a few days exploring the ancient Tibetan capital, taking time to let our bodies acclimatize, before driving across the Tibetan Plateau to Chinese Base Camp. This is the place from where we load up Yaks and trek to Cho Oyu base camp, below the north-west face. The route above base camp consists mainly of low-angled snow slopes up to 30° with one short but very steep section to bypass a sérac barrier at 6,400meters. We use three camps on the mountain; the highest at 7,500m is the launch pad for the summit, which is reached in 5 to 8 hours under normal conditions.
Day 01- Arrival in Kathmandu airport (1345meters).
There you will be met by our Airport Representative and transferred to hotel by private tourist vehicle. Overnight at hotel.
Day 02 - Pre-Trip meeting and Sightseeing in Kathmandu. Overnight at hotel.
After breakfast at 9 AM, we host a Pre-Trip meeting at your hotel and introduce your tour Guide(s) mean time and it will provide an opportunity for individuals to ask questions about the your tour and to introduce you to other participants. This includes a final briefing and preparations for the trip.
PLEASE ADVISE US IF YOU WILL BE ARRIVING LATE AND ARE THEREFORE UNABLE TO ATTEND THE PRE-TRIP MEETING.
IN THE PRE-TRIP MEETING All passengers MUST bring:
2. Four copies of Passport size photos each.
3. Travel Insurance Policy.
4. A writing pen
After the Pre-Trip meeting and breakfast your sightseeing trip will start at 9.45 AM in the morning for both days. We provide a private vehicle and professional tour guide. The places we visit are as below:
Situated 5 kilometers east of Kathmandu city, Pashupatinath temple is considered one of the holiest Hindu temples dedicated to Lord Shiva. Situated amidst a lush green natural setting on the banks of the Bagmati River, the temple built in pagoda style has gilted roof and richly carved silver doors. Visitors are permitted to view the temple from the east bank of river Bagmati as entrance into the temple is strictly prohibited to all non Hindus. Pashupatinath is the center of annual pilgrimage on the day of the Shivaratri festival which happens around February/March. Behind the temple are the cremation grounds.
This Stupa situated about 8 kms from Kathmandu City is one of the biggest of its kind in the world. Standing with a pair of eyes in each of the four directions, it symbolizes watchfulness. It is said that this Buddhist Stupa was built by King Man Deva at the advice of the goddess Mani Jogini. It rises from an octagonal base inset with prayer wheels. The shrine is surrounded by houses of Lamas or Buddhist priests. The Stupa is surrounded by a lot of monasteries.
Bhaktapur Durbar Square
As you walk in, you will feel a sense of inner harmony. Bhaktapur Durbar Square is a collection of pagoda and shikhara – style temples grouped around a fifty-five-window palace of brick and wood. The attraction of the Bhaktapur Durbar Square is The Lion gate, The Golden gate, The Palace of fifty-five windows, Art Galleries, The Statue of King Bhupatindra Malla.
Day 03- Official formalities in Kathmandu.
Formal briefing in the Ministry of Tourism. Today, the expedition leader will also check everyone's equipment. Overnight at hotel.
Day 04- Final Preparation day in Kathmandu. Overnight at hotel.
The last opportunity to buy anything missing.
Day 05- Fly to Lhasa. Overnight at hotel.
Early morning transfer to the international airport for the hour-long flight to Lhasa. This stunning flight, on a China Southwest Airlines Boeing 757, takes us right across the main Himalayan range and provides us with magnificent mountain views. After landing at Gongar Airport and meeting our Tibetan guide, it is a further 2-hour drive by Land cruiser to Lhasa. It's advisable to rest and take it easy for the remainder of the day due to Lhasa's altitude. Overnight at hotel.
Day 06 and 07-Guided sightseeing around Lhasa. Over night at Hotel in Lhasa.
After breakfast at our hotel, we will have an opportunity to visit the popular and awe inspiring Potala Palace, Lhasa’s most well-known attraction. Since its construction in 1694, the Potala has been the home of each of the successive Dalai Lamas until 1959 and the final resting place of many of them. Besides this we will visit the Jokhang Temple, the most respected religious structure in Tibet. We may visit Norbulingka Palace, which was known as the summer home of the Dalai Lamas, and Drepung monastery.
Day 08- Drive to Shigatse
We will have a long by land-cruisers across the Tibetan plateau. Soon after leaving Lhasa, we reach the banks of the Tsang Po, which becomes the Brahmaputra River when it enters India. There we will visit Tashilhunpo Monastery built in 1447, this is the residecce of the Panchan Lama- the second most influence religious figure in Tibet. Overnight in at hotel in Shigatse.
Day 09- Drive to Xegar
As we continue our drive along the Tibetan highway, the northern edge of the Greater Himalaya comes into view, often providing a spectacular panorama of peaks, including Everest. If there is time, we may be able to visit the main town and its hilltop monastery. Overnight at Hotel outside the Xegar.
Day 10- Acclimatisation Day
This day will be used as rest and acclimstisation day which helps us cope with the giant height to reach to Chinese base camp tomorrow. The general advice is to take it easy, but a visit of the main town and a gentle hike up to its hilltop monastery (4,200m) are highly recommended.
Day 11- Arrive Chinese base camp.
We complete the drive to the road-head and to the Chinese base camp. Leaving Xegar, we turn south along the bumpy track that leads to the road-head below Cho Oyu.
We complete the drive to the road-head and to the Chinese base camp. Leaving Xegar, we turn south along the bumpy track that leads to the road-head below Cho Oyu. Overnight at tented camp.
Day 12- Organization at Chinese base camp
This will be an important day in order to sort out all loads for the yak carry. In the afternoon, our yaks arrive ready to make the carry on the first leg to base camp tomorrow. Overnight at tented camp.
Day 13 to 16- Trek to Cho Oyu base camp.
With yaks carrying the expedition's supplies, we trek up the long valley to base camp. We spend 3 nights at intermediate camps at 5,200 and 5,450 meters before continuing to base camp. The benefit of our acclimatisation camp will be much appreciated when we finally occupy base camp, our home for the duration of the climb. We move into base camp early on day 15 and spend the afternoon organising climbing equipment. Overnight at tented camp.
Day 17 to 40- Climbing the north-west face of Cho Oyu.
From base camp we climb along the glacier towards the mountain and camp 1. Because of the altitude, this first sortie up the Gyabrag Glacier and onto the mountain itself is essentially tentative and one of familiarization. However, it provides an excellent opportunity to get a good view of the route and for everyone, including the expedition leader to assess the conditions on the mountain.
Once the expedition leader is happy with the team's acclimatization and weather permitting, we begin to climb the mountain in earnest. In order to reach a position from which we can make successful summit bids, the Sherpas will make sure that all camp stores and food are in the right place on the mountain at the right time. The leader will make sure that everyone is fit and well acclimatized.
Throughout the climb, the leader will adopt a programme that exposes the team members to ever increasing altitudes. This will be achieved by "climbing high and sleeping low" until each person feels suitably well adjusted to make the next move up to a higher camp. From each successive camp, the team will then climb high once more, before returning to the lower camp to sleep. Finally, each team member will go back down to base camp for a prolonged rest of at least 4 days before moving up to occupy camp 3 in readiness for the ultimate climb to the top. Camps on the mountain are located at:
Camp 1 - 6,400 meters
Camp 1 is at 6,400 meters and 5 to 8 hours from base camp. The camp is reached by a stiff climb from the head of the glacier at 6,100m. From here, the route follows steep scree, which improves as height is gained. Camp 1 is sited on a broad shoulder of snow, which leads up to a ridge above the camp.
Camp 2 - 7,000 meters
Above camp 1, a snow ridge leads easily to a series of ice cliffs. The way through these involves climbing a steep 50m ice wall at over 6,600m. Although straightforward, this is the hardest climbing on the route as it involves a huge effort to climb steep ice at such an altitude. Improved acclimatisation and greater familiarity makes the prospect of subsequent climbs through the ice cliffs less daunting but the challenge remains physically tough each time we make the journey to camp 2. Throughout this section, fixed ropes are placed in conjunction with the other teams operating on the mountain at the same time. Above the ice cliffs, there are several large crevasses which we make our way around until they finally give way and we reach the site of camp 2 at 7,000m. Depending upon the snow conditions, this can be a very demanding day of 6 to 8 hours.
Camp 3 - 7,400 meters
Camp 3 is at 7,400m and about 4 hours above camp 2. The top camp is located beneath a rock band that cuts the snow slopes of the upper basin. Looking south as we rise above the beautiful Nangpa Gosum peaks, we can see the peaks of Nepal and, to the north, the brown and yellow earth colours of the arid Tibetan plateau. Though the distance to camp 3 is short and the way easy, the altitude makes big demands of everyone.
Once in camp 3, we must make every effort to prepare for the following day. This means drinking, eating and resting. In order to function effectively on summit day, it is vital to drink as much as possible and this involves a big effort since the altitude makes the easiest physical work very demanding and the task of boiling water slower than usual. However, we must resist the temptation to relent and to relax as drinking and eating, in order to replenish the calories and fluids lost during the climb so far, is the highest priority if we are to be successful in our ambition of climbing Cho Oyu.
Summit day begins early as it takes several hours to make breakfast, to drink adequately and to get fully equipped before leaving the tent. Being west facing the sun hits the camp late so there is no rush to leave until shortly before first light. Once on our way, easy snow and rock ledges lead through the short rock band above the camp. Gradually the angle of the slope relents until we emerge onto the broad windswept back of the mountain. Now it is only a matter of putting one foot in front of the other to slowly gain the distant summit where Everest is the only summit visibly higher. It is not the only mountain to be seen, however, and the magnificent vista as we cross the vast summit plateau towards our high point includes Ama Dablam, Lhotse, Nuptse, Menlugtse, Gyachung Kang and Gaurisankar, as well as all the peaks of the Khumbu Himal. We reach the summit 5 to 8 hours after leaving camp 3.
Descent is by the same route, with nights spent at camp 3, and camp 1.
On day 40, all climbers should be back at base camp with the mountain stripped of equipment. Packing-up base camp is always time consuming and everyone will need to help to ensure that we leave no trace of our passing.
If we are successful in climbing the mountain early then we will leave base camp early. We can head back to Kathmandu as soon as everyone has made a determined summit climb but past experience has shown that we will need all of the days allotted unless the conditions on the mountain are exceptionally good and everyone acclimatises exceptionally well.
Day 41- Trek back to road-head.
After finishing our Trek we will descend back to the road-head with yaks carrying our equipment. Our road transport will be waiting for us. This is the place where we will spend our last tent night.
Day 42- Drive to Zhangmu.
Though the road to Kathmandu from Lhasa is in good condition, we have made two days' drive to for Kathmandu as the drive is so long which takes about 14 hours . So on this day we will stay at the hotel in Zhangmu.
Day 43- Drive to Kathmandu. Overnight at Hotel.
Once back in Kathmandu, Ace the Himalaya will host an evening barbecue to celebrate the expedition and as a farewell party to thank the Sherpas and the team member for their support and friendship during the expedition with the hope of seeing you all again for next expedition, may be Everest!!
Day 44- Leisure day in Kathmandu. Overnight at hotel.
Leisure day in Kathmandu
Day 45- Transfer to international airport for your final flight departure.
The trip ends, our Airport Representative will drop you to the Kathmandu International Airport for your flight departure from Nepal.
PLEASE NOTE: The above itinerary is not a fixed program but is intended to give an indication of the likely events during the expedition. Please note that because of climbing Cho Oyu, it will be necessary to have a flexible plan in order to take the best advantage of situations as they present themselves. Any changes to the itinerary will be made with a view to maximizing the benefit to the team members and of ensuring their eventual success on the mountain.
Normally climbers will change their departure flights from Kathmandu when they know exactly when the expedition is going to end. We plan to stay at Base Camp for climbing as long as it takes for us to be successful.
Team members should take out private insurance if they wish to be covered against cancellation due to medical or personal reasons. This is called trip Cancellation insurance and can be obtained from your normal travel agent.
• Airport / Hotel / Airport pick up & drop by private car / van / bus.
• Standard twin sharing accommodation in three/four star hotel in Kathmandu breakfast included. (6 nights)
• Guided city tour in Kathmandu by private car / van / bus.
• Two star hotel accommodation in Lhasa and Gyantse with basic guesthouse accommodation in Shegar and Zangmu.
• Full board meal during the tour/trek and camping at base camp, prepared by our cook with hot Tea & coffee.
• All base camp and Advance base camp camping gears (We will provide fully water proof dining tents, kitchen gears, dining table, chairs, toilet tents, shower tent at the base camp and advance base camp)
• High quality tents for all camps.
• Insurance for all Nepali staffs and porters including helicopter rescue provision.
• Boiled and purify drinking water for the trek and at base camp.
• Expedition permits
• Liaison officer and his round trip flight, insurance, wages, expedition equipments etc.
• High altitude climbing food, fuel, Gas above base camp (you are also advised to bring some high altitude food yourselves)
• Guide, cook, porters, helpers up to base camp
• Climbing Sherpas (1 member = 1 Sherpa Ratio on climbing day)
• A well stocked first aid and medical kit sufficient to counter any possible mountaineering ailments, from headache to serious injury.
• Oxygen from Camp two and above (2 bottles in each camp - camp 2 and camp 3).
• Oxygen equipment for medical use only.
• A portable hyperbaric chamber (Gamow bag)
• Emergency communications on the mountain and satellite communications link for helicopter evacuation.
• Mask regulator
• Sightseeing/Monument entrance fees.
• Welcome dinner for members in Kathmandu.
• Power supply at Base Camp for charging electronics (solar or generator backup)
• Flight cost from Kathmandu - Lhasa including airport departure tax.
• Chinese visa and permit. (We handle all the paperwork for the Chinese visa and all the Tibet travel and climbing permits.)
• All our government taxes and vat.
• Farewell dinner party in Kathmandu.
1. Lunch and dinner whilst in Kathmandu, Lhasa, Gyantse, Shigatse, Shegar and Zangmu (allow US$ 12 to 18 per day)
2. Travel Insurance which cover emergency Rescue and Evacuation. (K2 Summit Treks & Expedition strongly recommends that you purchase a Global Rescue membership to protect yourself).
3. International airfare and airport departure tax.
4. Nepal entry visa fee (Tourist Visa with Multiple Entry for 90 days can be obtained by paying US $ 100 in Kathmandu airport up on your arrival. You will also require 2 passport size photos You can easily extend the visa if require.)
5. Items of a personal nature such as alcoholic drinks, cold drinks, laundry.
6. Personal trekking and Climbing Equipment.
7. Any others expenses which are not mentioned on Price Includes section.
8. Excess baggage charges.
9. Sherpa tip pool (See below)
10. Internet and sat phone.
11. Costs incurred as a result of delays or events beyond the control of K2 Summit Treks & Expedition