Far Western Nepal - API Himal Trail to Urai La Tek - Oct 2017

#1 Oct 30th, 2017, 23:08
Join Date:
Jun 2016
  • SathyaV is offline

You can find below trip report of the Trek covering
Far Western Nepal - API Himal Trail to Urai La Tek - Oct 2017
outlining the itinerary, link to photos and highlights.

Participants : Sathya V, Kaverappa OT, Sanju

Photos from the trek : Far Western Nepal - Api Himal Trail to Urai La Oct 2017 Trek Album

Summary : This is a very remote trek across the Darchula and Bajhang District in Far Western Nepal leading to the border with Tibet. This is a journey across 3 high alitiude passes (Pathar Rashi Bhanjyang / Duwal Bhanjyang / Nilkhati Khal) to the Nepal-Tibet border of Urai la (a 5000M+ pass). From the last village of Chetti (in Darchula District) till one reaches Laphri village (Bajhang dist) on the Urai La trail, a journey of 10 days, there are no villages and in non-yarsagumba season like October one can find no one else on this trail. One has to be self sufficient for this period. The trek offers great views of the API-Nampa Himal from Khandeswari. On the Urai La trail, the walk along the valleys of the Seti Nadi is spectacular - and to me the highlight of this trek.

Route Info:After a nice day long drive in a jeep from Darchula to Pari Bagar via Gokuleshwar and Latinath, the trek starts along a wide track on the true left bank of the Chameliya Nadi. The trail ascends high above the river before descending to Chauki Bagar and continuing to Makarigad Gau, where we had lunch. After Makarigad Gau the trail splits into 2 with one leading towards the village of Ghusa along the Chameliya Nadi and to API Himal Base camp. We continued on the other path, through a steep ascent in the direction of Makari Gad to Makarkot and then to Khandeswari. There is a well marked track that continues from Khandeswari to Ghajir and then to Cheti, the last village on this trail. Beyond Cheti, the trail is not that broad, though fairly easily identifiable. This is the trail used by locals during the Yarsa gompa seasons. From Chetti the trail continues along the Anni Khana Gad through thick forests. One can see numerous waterfalls along the way. This is a good spot for camping. From the campsite it is a steep climb to Pathar Rashi Bhanjyang. In October, we could not find any suitable places to camp with water nearby. So, we ended up camping about 100M below the pass, where we could find water. The next morning we crossed Pathar Rashi Bhanjyang. The views from the pass were nice. The descent from the Pathar Rashi Bhanjyang to the stream emanating from it, is really steep & perilous - as a part of the path has been washed away with landslides. After crossing the path heads east/south easterly direction to Duwal Bhanjynag, clearly marked by cairns and prayer flags. We camped just after we descended the pass. (Please note that Duwal Bhanjyang, as marked on the 2981 01 Chetti map is a km NE of what I saw on the trail. Duwal bhanjynag actually is the lowest point between spot heights 4922 and 4573 marked on this map ). The trail then contours above the stream flowing eastward till it reaches a confluence of Suni Gad. There is a hut which marks this confluence. It would probably be a hotel/dhaba during the yarsagumba season. Beyond this the trail is not marked on the map. However, there is a fairly well identifiable trail heading northwards towards Daulichaur (marked on the map), which then crosses the Baildhar Dhar ridge to the east and descends to Sug Gad. The route to be followed can be see clearly from the top of the ridge. After crossing the Sug Gad on a bridge the route ascends to a small lake and then contours in a north-easterly direction towards the base camp of Nilkhati Khal. It is a steep ~700M ascent to the Nilkhati Khal. On the southern side of the pass the descent is steep and initially slippery. The views from the pass are fantastic. The track then descends along the Nilkhati Khola to join the Saipal Trail after crossing the bridge over the Seti Nadi at Naya Odar. The stretch south of Nilkhati Khal till Naya Odar is very picturesque. From Naya Odar the track continues in a north westerly direction to Dahachaur, and then northwards along the true left bank of the Seti Nadi to Saipal. From Saipal, where we camped, the route continues along the Seti Nadi to the Urai La base camp. From here we did a day trek to Urai La, marked by prayer flags and a stone pillar indicating the border between Nepal and China. The whole route of this trail has been surveyed in 2074 (nepalese calendar / 2017 gregorian calendar) for the construction of a road from Bajhang (Chainpur) to Taklakot. The other side of the Urai La the route leads to Taklakot (in Tibet) which is enroute Mansarovar. The original plan was to head to Humla (not via Urai la - though there is a route after crossing Urai LA to Hilsa - which can be reached in 2 ays). However, en route to Urai La Sanju said his head was aching and he would not be able to make it to Urai La. We had sent him back mid-way to rest at the basecamp, suspecting AMS. On reaching the campsite in the evening we found that his condition had not improved and he was shivering due to the cold. So we decided to retreat and head back to Chainpur. The details of the retreat are in the blog.

Trek Itinerary
02nd October : Darchula to Pari Bagar in Jeep via Gokuleshwar and Latinath. Trek to camp before Chauki Bagar ( 29.77355 N / 80.80876 E / 1197 M)
03rd October : Camp before Chauki Bagar to Camp in school Ground near Korthi ( 29.80708 N / 80.92965 E / 2383 M)
04th October : Camp in school Ground near Korthi to Camp in shepherds encampment beyond Chetti ( 29.80527 N / 81.03726 E / 3384 M )
05th October : Camp in shepherds encampment beyond Chetti to base camp just below Pathar Rashi Bhanjyang ( 29.79517 N / 81.06359 E / 4594 M)
06th October : Pathar Rashi Bhanjyang base camp to base camp after crossing Duwal Bhanjyang ( 29.76199 N / 81.098245 E / 4253 M) via Pathar Rashi Bhanjyang ( 29.79246 N / 81.06561 E / 4683 M) and Duwal Bhanjyang ( 29.76792 N / 81.09102 E / 4574 M)
07th October : Base camp after Duwal Bhanjyang to Nilkhati Khal Base camp to Nilkhati Khal Base camp (29.79193 N / 81.17275 E / 4274 M)
08th October : Nilkhati Khal Base camp to Camp at Naya Odar (29.86281 N / 81.18585 E / 3368 M) via Nilkhati Khal (29.80340 N / 81.17345 E / 4939 M)
09th October : Camp at Naya Odar to camp near Saipal ( 29.96158 N / 81.22163 E / 4024 M)
10th October : Camp near Saipal to Urai La Base Camp ( 29.98258 N / 81.25151 E / 4525 M) and day trek to Urai La ( 30.01241 N / 81.24168 E / 5221 M)
11th October : Urai La Base Camp to camp on ridge before Dahachaur
12th October : Camp on Ridge before Dahachaur to camp near Buko Odar/Pipaltar
13th October : Camp near Buko Odar/Pipaltar to Laphari
14th October : Laphari to village 15 mins later
15th October : Village below Laphari to Kaya
16th October : Kaya to village before Kada
17th October : Village before Kada to Dhalaun via Binanayak Nagna Bhanjyan
18th October : Dhalaun to Talkot
19th October : Talkot to Rupatoli and jeep to Chainpur & overnight bus to Mahendranagar

GPS Waypoints from the trek : XLS File
Google Earth file with Maps and Waypoints embedded : KMZ File

thank you


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