Trek Nepal's Upper Dolpo

Trek remote and spectacular Himalayan mountains near the Tibet border, through ancient Tibetan Buddhist culture, in search of blue sheep and snow leopards. Follow in George Schaller’s and Peter Matthiessen’s boot steps to Crystal Mountain (a peak embedded with crystal deposits that glimmer in the sun) and Shey Gompa (the monastery at its base).

“My favourite trek is Upper Dolpo; there are so many routes into this diverse, remote region. I love the Tibetan feel of Dolpo, the lack of trekkers in most parts, the opportunity to research and make many side trips to remote monasteries and villages, the history, the wonderful camp sites and the ‘living’ Dolpo itself, a step back in time. Overall, it’s a very challenging, quite diverse, and scenically spectacular trek.”  Kim Baniister, trek leader

Near the Tibet border is the remote and spectacular region of Upper Dolpo. It is bordered to the east by the Kali Gandaki (deepest valley in the world), and isolated from the rest of Nepal by high passes to the south. This geography has created one of the last enclaves of pure Tibetan Buddhist culture on Earth. Upper Dolpo also has rare Bon monasteries (Bon is the ancient pre-Buddhist religion of Tibet). Yak caravans still trade salt from Tibet with grain from Nepal.

In 1973 naturalist George Schaller explored Upper Dolpo to study the rare Himalayan blue sheep and its main predator, the snow leopard. Author Peter Matthiessen wrote a book The Snow Leopard about their trip.  An outstanding film originally titled Caravan (re-named Himalaya) was produced about the Upper Dolpo region. 

Dolpo has long been bypassed by development and tourists. In 1992 Upper Dolpo finally opened to trekkers. Trekkers must travel in groups with an approved trekking company, and pay a restricted area fee (included in the price).

Our classic Upper Dolpo trek will traverse remote spectacular Himalayan Mountains, through ancient Tibetan Buddhist culture, in search of blue sheep and snow leopards. We will follow in George Schaller’s and Peter Matthiessen’s boot steps to Crystal Mountain (a peak embedded with crystal deposits that glimmer in the sun) and Shey Gompa (the monastery at its base). The trek is strenuous because of the altitude. Porters will haul your overnight gear, so you carry only a light daypack. We will camp each night under the deep sky’s spectacular stars.


 

  • Suitable Activities: Global Adventures
  • Seasons: March, April, October, November
  • Weather: View weather forecast.
  • Difficulty: Strenuous
  • Land Manager: Land Manager TBD
  • Parking Permit Required: see Land Manager
  • Recommended Party Size: 12
  • Maximum Party Size: 12
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