Trek to Tendi’s home village of Saisima

To raise funds for the Tendi Sherpa Foundation

Tendi Sherpa, on behalf of the Tendi Sherpa Foundation (TSF), looks forward to welcoming you to Nepal and taking you on a trek to his home village of Saisima in the remote Khembalung valley, an area reputed to be the inspiration behind the legend of Shangri La.

Only TSF operate a trek in this area and during your trek you will visit Rai, Sherpa and Tamang communities and experience a very special insight into the cultural and ethnical diversity of Nepal. The people you meet will likely have seen very few, if any, Westerners before.

The trek, starting at an elevation of 410 meters and rising to 3000 meters, offers a huge variety of fauna and flora and panoramic views of giant snow covered mountains.

In places the walking is challenging, although anyone with a decent level of fitness, stamina and determination should be able to complete the trek. It is recommended to wear boots that have been worn in and to know how to walk properly with trekking poles.

Your porters and some of your guides will be local to the Khembalung valley and will greatly enhance your overall experience – as well as humbling you with the loads they are able to carry!

Toilet facilities on trek will be basic – usually a communal toilet tent with a hole in the ground – but this small inconvenience will be more than compensated for by the food created by head cook Kumar and his team. Kumar is widely recognised as the best trekking cook in Nepal and the fare he produces each night under such limiting circumstances must be seen and tasted to be believed!

Your trek will be organised by TAGnepal (www.tagnepal.com), one of Nepal’s leading trekking and expedition companies, of which Tendi himself is a Director, and Tendi and his team at TAGnepal will do all they can to ensure you have a wonderful experience.

Overview
Arrive Kathmandu:
Saturday
Total nights in Nepal:
14
Total days Trekking:
9
Maximum Height:
3000m
Trekking Type:
Cultural experience
Difficulty:
Moderately difficult, some challenging days
Accommodation:
High quality hotels in Kathmandu and camping on trek.
Depart Kathmandu:
Saturday
DAY 1 – Saturday

Kathmandu
Elevation: 4593 feet / 1400 meters
Arrive at Kathmandu’s international airport where a TAGnepal representative will meet you and transfer you to your hotel. Welcome and early evening trek briefing from Tendi.

DAY 2

Kathmandu
You can choose to visit some of the sights of Kathmandu or simply relax at your hotel. You will also prepare to go on trek.

DAY 3

Fly to Tumlingtar, drive to Manebhanjyang and trek to Sitalpati
Elevation: 4265 ft / 1300 m
Hiking Distance: ~ 1 mile

You take a 40 minute flight to reach Tumlingtar (410m), the starting point for your trek into the Khembalung Valley. The sights from the plane are amazing, providing dramatic views of terraced hills and the distant Himalayan giants. After disembarking, you take a one hour Jeep drive along rough roads to the village of Manebhanjyang where you will meet the rest of your staff and porters before walking for 1.5 hours to your camp site at Sitalpati. Tonight you will spend your first night camping.

DAY 4

Trek to Tombe
Elevation: 1837 ft / 560 m
Hiking Distance: ~ 8 miles

Early morning, after having breakfast, you will continue your trek. The trail goes through local villages and farms, gradually descending 700 meters in elevation over 2.5 hours and then following an easy trail to reach camp at Tombe, near the River Arun. The total hiking time will be 5 to 6 hours.

DAY 5

Trek to Waleng
Elevation: 3937 ft / 1200 m
Hiking Distance: ~ 8 miles

As you continue your trek, the trail crosses and then follows the Arun river, before climbing over 600m to reach camp at Waleng. The total hiking time will be about 6 hours.

DAY 6

Trek to Yangden
Elevation: 6234 ft / 1900 m
Hiking Distance: ~ 5 miles

This morning starts with a trek to the Taner La, gaining about 200 metres in elevation. The trail then continues until reaching a village called Yangden, where Tendi has built a small school for the local people. The total hiking time will be about 6 hours.

DAY 7

Trek to Gonthala
Elevation: 6890 ft / 2100 m
Hiking Distance: ~ 2.5 miles

This morning you will walk uphill until reaching the Sherpa village of Gonthala. This is where Tendi was first engaged in social activities; for example the ‘Greenhouse Project’, scholarship programs and installing a solar power system and smokeless ovens. As the total hiking time will only be about 2 hours you will have time to see these projects and to rest.

DAY 8

Trek to Saisima
Elevation: 8202 ft / 2500 m
Hiking Distance: ~ 7 miles

Today you will hike to the small village of Dhobatak, a sacred place for Bhuddists. You will visit the cave where, in the 7th century, Guru Padmasambhava discovered and meditated. Many pilgrims from Nepal and further afield visit this holy place each year. Soon after, the trail goes uphill again, taking 2 hours to reach the ridge before continuing as an easy going trail to reach Saisima village where Tendi was born and grew up. It is the last village in the region. The total hiking time will be about 6 hours.

DAY 9

Saisima Village
Elevation: 8202 ft / 2500 m
Today, you will explore Saisima Village which is the focus of the assistance TSF has made to date. You will visit the Community House that Tendi has already built along with other houses he built immediately after the devastating earthquake of April 2015. You will, undoubtably, also have the opportunity to visit the homes of some of Tendi’s close relatives who still live and farm in Saisima. Tendi will talk about his village and his dreams to improve the lives of those who live there, with a particular focus on disadvantaged children. The remaining time in the village will be for rest and relaxation.

DAY 10

Trek to Dobato
Elevation: 8202 ft / 2500 m
Hiking Distance: ~ 8 miles

After breakfast, you will retrace your steps downhill to Dhobatak where you will have a relaxed lunch. You then continue trekking until reaching Gonthala before a 1 hour climb to Dobato, a yak pasture with wonderful views of numerous snow covered peaks. The total hiking time will be about 8 hours.

DAY 11

Trek to Nagitar
Elevation: 6890 ft / 2100 m
Hiking Distance: ~ 11 miles

Leaving camp after breakfast, the trail gains 500m in elevation to reach the highest point of the trek at Deurali Danda (3000m) where there is a fabulous viewpoint. The trail then continues downhill until you reach our camp site at the village of Nagitar. The total hiking time will be about 7 hours.

DAY 12

Trek to Heluwabesi
Elevation: 1837 ft / 560 m
Hiking Distance: ~ 6 miles

You descend until reaching the Arun river which you follow until crossing before a final hike uphill for around half-an-hour to reach our camp site at Heluwabesi. As this will be the last day of your trek, tonight you will say goodbye to all the porters.

DAY 13

Drive to Tumlingtar and fly to Kathmandu
After breakfast there will be a 2.5 hour drive in a Jeep until reaching the airport at Tumlingtar. If the weather is clear, the flight back to Kathmandu will be a scenic farewell to the Khembalung valley. Transfer to hotel.

DAY 14

Kathmandu
TSFnepal will arrange for you to enjoy a guided tour of some of Kathmandu’s most interesting sites, such as Thamel, the ‘Monkey Temple’ of Swayambhunath and Pashupatinath temple – one of the most famous Hindu temples in Nepal and the most famous Shiva temple in Asia. Final Celebration Dinner with Tendi. Hotel.

DAY 15: Saturday

Depart
At a pre-arranged time, you will be met at your Hotel and transferred to Kathmandu’s international airport for final departure.

The temperature during this trek can range from over 30°C during the day to below freezing at night and your clothing and sleeping bag need to be able to cope with these extremes. Normally there will be no rain but it is possible, so waterproofs should be packed.

Temperatures can drop very quickly in the evening at altitude and, in order to stay warm, you should carry a dry shirt or t-shirt and your lightweight insulated jacket in your day sack to put on as soon as you reach camp and the walking has finished for the day.

Sun hats are an essential item, with a wide brim and something, for example a buff, to protect your neck and to prevent the inhalation of dust.

Your boots are your most important item of clothing. For this trek, we would recommend you use the boots you normally use for hill walking in the UK. If you need to buy boots make sure you fully break them in before going on trek. When buying new boots from a specialist retailer, explain exactly what you are going to use the boots for (trekking up to 3000 metres in a remote area of Nepal) and take the time to choose a pair that fit you well, remembering to put on a pair of walking socks when trying the boots on. Your boots should provide a good degree of ankle support and have a quality sole such as Vibram, and it is useful if they have a waterproof lining, such as Goretex.

Supplied Equipment

Tents for either single or double occupancy, comfortable matresses and pillows.

Renting Equipment

It is possible to rent sleeping bags and down jackets in Kathmandu but Tendi recommends bringing your own as rental ones can be damaged – and sometimes smell a bit! It is also possible to rent equipment in the UK: http://trekhireuk.com

FOR KATHMANDU
  • Casual non-trekking clothes and comfortable walking shoes to wear in Kathmandu
  • Small lockable suitcase or bag so you can leave your spare clothes and personal toiletries not needed on trek in Kathmandu for collection on your return
  • Swimwear and flip flops if your Kathmandu hotel has a swimming pool
  • Electrical adaptor suitable for Nepal
ON TREK

Clothing:

  • Lightweight good quality boots, preferably waterproof and spare laces
  • Trainers or comfortable shoes for wearing in the evening after trekking (and in Kathmandu)
  • Fully waterproof and breathable over-trousers and jacket (with hood)
  • Lightweight insulated down or synthetic jacket for colder evenings at altitude
  • Trekking trousers: at least 3 pairs and useful if they convert into shorts
  • Trekking shorts if you prefer
  • Underwear: non cotton
  • Base layer: at least 3 merino wool or breathable synthetic tops
  • Shirts: at least 3 lightweight, synthetic shirts – not cotton – with either long or short sleeves
  • Soft shell jacket or light fleece – 1 or 2
  • Socks: 5 or more pairs of wool or synthetic medium weight trekking socks, enough for a fresh pair at least every 2 days
  • Warm hat
  • Sunhat or cap
  • Buff or bandana: for warmth and also to protect the back of your neck from the sun
  • Gloves: 1 pair of thin gloves and 1 pair of water & windproof gloves

Equipment and accessories

Try and keep your equipment lightweight whenever possible. This is our suggested list:

  • Duffel bag (and padlock): 100 litres or more, made of tough, ideally waterproof, material with rugged zippers
  • Day sack: 25 to 30 litres with a rain cover
  • Trekking poles
  • Assorted waterproof stuff sacks or plastic bags to keep your clothes and kit dry
  • Sleeping bag: good quality with a comfort rating of – 5°C and a liner if you wish
  • Head torch
  • Water bottles: 2 x 1 litre, preferably metal (e.g. SIGG) or hard plastic (e.g. Nalgene) which can be used as a hot water bottle at night
    Water purification tablets
  • Sunglasses with 100% UV protection plus a spare pair
    If you wear glasses, bring a spare pair as contact lenses can cause problems due to dust
  • Sun cream and lip guard with at least 30 SPF
  • Insect repellent
  • Throat sweets
  • Camera
  • Wash kit: bio-degradable soap/shampoo, toothpaste, toothbrush
  • Trek towels: 1 large (in duffel) and 1 small (in day sack)
  • Antibacterial gel (for hands) and wetwipes (for other places!)
  • Travel tissues
  • Earplugs
  • Solar power charger or spare batteries for electrical items
  • Plastic bag to store garbage on trek
  • Binoculars: although not essential, a lightweight pair will add to your experience
  • Books, journal, pens, cards, travel games etc. – for any spare time.

Personal first aid kit

  • Any personal medicines or antibiotics (tell Tendi if you have any conditions and are taking medication)
  • Antiseptic cream
  • Anti-fungal foot powder
  • Antihistamine tablets and/or cream
  • Anti-blister plasters – e.g. Compeed
  • Assorted plasters
  • Anti diarrhea medication – e.g. Imodium
  • Rehydration powders – e.g. Dioralyte
  • Painkiller tablets – e.g. paracetemol or aspirin