Cho Oyu Base Camp
Mount Cho Oyu is known as the sixth highest mountain in the world, at 8,201 meters above sea level. Cho Oyu means “Turquoise Goddess” in Tibetan. Cho Oyu lies in the Himalayas and is near to the west of the world’s highest mountain, Mount Everest, and the world’s fourth highest mountain, the Lhotse. It’s one of the towering peaks standing with Everest well above the surrounding mountains. Cho Oyu base camp a familiar landmark to climbers ascending Everest’s north face.
Cho Oyu was first attempted in 1952 by an expedition organized and financed by the Joint Himalayan Committee of Great Britain as preparation for an attempt on Mount Everestthe following year. From then on, Cho Oyu became a familiar landmark to climbers ascending Everest’s north face. The mountain was first climbed on October 19, 1954, via the north-west ridge by an Austrian expedition. Cho Oyu was the fifth 8000 meter peak to be climbed, after Annapurna in June 1950, Mount Everest in May 1953, Nanga Parbat in July 1953 and K2 in July 1954.
Just a few kilometers west of Cho Oyu is Nangpa La, a 5,716m glaciated pass that serves as the main trading route between the Tibetans and the Khumbu’s Sherpas. Due to its proximity to this pass and the generally moderate slopes of the standard northwest ridge route, Cho Oyu is considered as the easiest 8,000-meter peak to climb, and it is a popular objective for professionally guided parties.
Cho Oyu National Park is situated among rolling, vast green (in May, June and September) short-grass and boulder strewn valleys leading up to the base camp. The environment is beautiful and stark, inhabited with wild birds and animals. Upon arriving in base camp by vehicle, you trek towards the mountain, where the vegetation changes to become more alpine and rocky, with Cho Oyu and many smaller unclimbed peaks looming upwards above you. Plants in the park range from spruce, pine, a wide variety of evergreen trees, as well as cold belt grasslands. Many precious animals inhabit Tibet, such as antelope, deer, fox, gazelles, yaks, and many species of birds.
Drive to base camp: Our drive from Kathmandu, into Tibet and finally to base camp is a relaxing and interesting adventure. We stop in medieval looking towns with dirt streets, experience Tibetan culture, while stopping to walk each day or so in the beautiful surrounding hills to acclimate to the rising altitude. It offers a great chance to encounter the vast Tibetan plateau and great views of the surrounding Himalayan Giants, Everest, Cho Oyu, and Shishapangma. We end at Chinese base camp at 5,000 meters/16,400 feet, which is located just below the Jabula glacier, also known as the Kyetrag or Gyabrag glacier. Along the way we stay and eat at rustic hotels at the organizer’s expense.
PREVIOUS EXPERIENCE / FITNESS
If you are used to regular multi day hill walking you will have the right level of fitness to fully enjoy your time on this trek. This trip goes to a very high altitude so previous experience of high altitude will be essential. Non hill walkers must come with a reasonable degree of fitness. Acclimatization days involve 3 -5 hours walking, while the main trek up to and beyond Advanced Base camp will involve 7 – 8 hours walking. The effort will however be extremely rewarding and for many an altitude record combined with the satisfaction of being so close and high on Everest.
This is a high altitude trip, and it is recommended that you have previously trekked to at least 4500m. If you have concerns about the effects, don’t worry because our itinerary allows sufficient time to acclimatize. The best way to avoid such symptoms is to walk at a gentle steady pace, drink plenty of fluid and maintain a healthy intake of food. The nearest hospital will be by land and not by helicopter. We will require a copy of your insurance prior to departure. Please also ensure your insurance covers you for walking up to 6500m (some will exclude this option).
Just in case your main luggage goes missing en route, it is a good idea to wear your boots on the plane. Most other things can be replaced but comfortable, well worn – in boots cannot. Pack important items in strong plastic bags.
VISAS AND PERMITS
Most EU nationals can purchase Nepal Visas on arrival in Kathmandu. You will need the payment of US$40 ready in cash and two passport sized photographs. All other countries should check with their local embassy. Passports must be valid for at least six months after the end date of the trip. Our agent in Kathmandu will obtain all the Tibetan Visas as a group during the familiarization day. Visas are not included in the cost of the expedition so allow around $70 for this visa. Please also bring 8 passport photos for use during the expedition.
For the journey in to Base Camp it is essential that you keep any views about ‘Free Tibet’ quiet in public places and especially at check points and border crossings, likewise any political sensitive t-shirts! Failure to do so could result in entry being refused or a substantial delay.
Departure TimeAny Time
Return TimeApproximately 8:30 PM.
Dress CodeTrekking equipment
IncludedAll taxes and official expensesBasic guesthouse accommodationBreakfast, Lunch, DinnerCity tourDeparture TaxesDomestic flightsLocal staff and portersPersonal Guide
Not IncludedAlcohol and cold drinksEntry visaHotelInternational flightsMandatory travel insurancePermits and TIMS permitPersonal trekking equipmentTips for trekking staff and driver
Day 1: Arrival at Kathmandu
Day 2: Kathmandu City Tour
Day 3: Visa and document collection
Day 4: Drive to Nyalam 3,750 m.
Day 5: Rest and acclimatization at Nyalam.
Day 6: Drive to Tingri 4,200 m.
Day 7: Rest and acclimatization in Tingri.
Day 8: Drive to Cho-Oyu Base Camp 5,100 m..
Day 9: Rest day at Cho-Oyu BC.
Day 10: Drive back to Kathmandu.
Day 11: Day in Kathmandu (reserve day).
Day 12: Final departure.