Langtan Region

Legend has it that the Langtang valley was discovered by a Lama (monk) following a runway yak. Lang stands for yak and tang means to follow in the Tibetan lingo; thus the name. Langtang is a narrow valley that lies just south of the Nepal-Tibet border and is squeezed in between the main Himalayan range to the north and a slightly lower mountain range consisting of snow clad peaks to the south. Tamangs inhabit this high and isolated region, but their religious customs, language and attire resemble those of the Tibetans rather than their brethren of Nepal's middle hills. A visit to Langtang valleys offers an opportunity to explore villages and monasteries as well as to visit glaciers at a comfortably low elevation. Dominating the valley to the north is Langtang Lirung (7,245 m) while Gang Chhenpo (6,388 m) and Naya Kangri (5,846 m) lie to the south and Dorje Lakpa (6,996 m), guards the eastern end of the valley.

Though Syabrubesi, the trailhead to Langtang region, is only about a day's drive from Kathmandu, the valley is a relatively less frequented area by trekkers. But Bill Tillman, a famous explorer, has described Langtang as a one-of-a-kind valley in the world in terms of its scenic beauty.

Trekking in the Langtang region offers a unique possibility to take in the beautiful Nepalese Himalaya. While Langtang Himal and its several peaks mesmerize trekkers on the one hand, the fresh water lakes such as Gosainkunda, Saraswati kunda and Bhairav kunda, which are situated at a height of more than 4,000 m, satiate the trekkers' thirst for peace and tranquility. Gosainkunda, which is considered to be a sacred lake by Hindus because of the mythical stories associated with its origin, attracts pilgrims from all over the country as well as from outside, especially during the full moon of August, to pay homage to the Hindu God, Shiva. The lake is also sacred to the Buddhists.

Due to its close proximity to Kathmandu, the Langtang region is an ideal trekking destination for those with time constraints who wish to experience Nepal's unique combination of cultures, landscape and mountain vistas. The valley is home to the red panda, snow leopard and the Himalayan thar, Himalayan black bear, yellow-throated marten and many other bird species, and also presents a delightful kaleidoscope of coniferous and rhododendron forests.

In addition to the Langtang Valley Trek and the Gosainkunda Pilgrimage Trail, Aap Ka Safar also offers the Rasuwa Trek, a new attraction for trekkers in the Langtang region. This trek takes you through beautiful and traditional villages. This is complemented by the scenery which is simply fabulous.

All you need is a reasonable level of physical fitness to trek in this region. No previous trekking experience is necessary.

Langtang Valley Trek
 
Gosainkunda Pilgrimage Trail
Rasuwa Trek (Tamang Heritage)
 

Trip Details

 

Gear List

Shoes

Almost all climbers use Italian OneSport shoes today. The One Sport company has been aquired by Millet - boots still looks the same but the brand tag is different. Get them oversized (1-2 sizes). This is not your average weekend climbing trip and you need something where your toes have space to move freely, or you´ll get frostbite by rush delivery.
HotTronics make great heating pads and wires that can be used in your boots on your summit attempt. Michael Strynoe rebuilt the battery packs to give more power at a lower weight using AA Lithium batteries.

Crampons

Camp makes the ultralight titanium crampons. They are light, but considered not durable. We took our chances with them and they never broke on us. Bring spares and carry one spare at the summit attempt. Secure them to the boots with steel wire if they keep falling of. There are however many brands of crampons around. Choose your favorites, remember only that ice climbing crampons differ from glacier crampons.

Clothes

You will need multi-layer clothing for climbing between BC and C3. The temperature changes dramatically when the clouds obscure the sun. One or two layers of lightweight Gore-Tex over fleece will work well, since the layers will be easy to shed or add. Carry a lightweight down jacket at all times. Use a cap to protect your head in the sun. Wear water-resistant gloves in the icefall and a good pair of down mittens higher up. Carry a spare mitten on your summit attempt. Use a heavy down suit for the summit. We wear it already from C2 on the summit attempt in order to save weight. If you choose to do that, move early in the morning or you´ll boil.

We have used down suites from both Mountain Hardware and North Face and they all worked equally well. Check that the hood will work together with the oxygen mask, covering your face properly.
If possible, bring a spare down suit for cold nights in BC. Bring plenty of lightweight socks to change.

Face mask

Use a heat-exchanging, wired face mask for protection against Khumbu- cough. Use the mask already from Gorak Shep. You´ll get used to it and be protected right from the start. You should find the mask in stores for cross-country skiing. If you don´t, check the gear link list on this web site. The Finnish manufacturer is listed there.

Harness

North Face makes a great no-nonsense harness. Remove the stuff that you don't need. Tie about half a meter of line with a carabiner for the fixed ropes. Forget screw carabiners, you want them big and simple at Everest. Make a knot halfway up the rope and hook up a jumar with another carabiner. Secure the jumar in the front to your backpack straps or at chest level when not in use, this being the easiest way to get hold of it. Use a repelling device or just a carabiner if you know the technique.

Photographs
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