Day 1: Arrive in Islamabad
Hotel, trek briefing. We will have ample time for sightseeing and shopping in colorful old bazaars of Rawalpindi and new markets of Islamabad. We may also drive to the huge modern Faisal Mosque in Islamabad.
We will drive on the famous KKH to Besham through Taxila and Abottabad. Time permitting we will stop at the famous Gandharan archeological sites in Taxila. We will drive up the lush green foothills of the Himalayas and cross the mighty Indus near Besham. It will take about 6 to 8 hours to drive to Besham.
Day 3: Drive to Gilgit 1,500 m.
It takes about six to eight hours to drive from Besham to Gilgit. The drive through the Indus Gorge is guaranteed to knock your socks off! The view after crossing the Rakhiot Bridge of Nanga Parbat is without any parallel. Standing at around 1,000 m. you see a mountain which rises to above 8,000 m.! This is the largest land escarpment in the world. This is also where the three greatest mountain ranges meet; Himalaya, Hindukush and Karakoram. We will have time to shop in the Central Asian bazaars of Gilgit.
Day 4: Drive to Astore 2,350 m.
Jeep drive. We will backtrack our route from Gilgit and take a left hand turn on the KKH near Jaglot to enter the Astore valley. It takes about 6 to 8 hours to get to Astore town. We will camp in Astore.
Day 5: Drive to Tarashing 2,900 m.
After about 3 to 4 hours of rough jeep driving we reach the village of Tarashing in the Rupal valley. Here we send our jeeps back to Gilgit. The Rupal valley is a beautiful forested valley with many pine trees.
Day 6: Trek Rupal 3,200 m.
The trek begins. We walk through lush and gentle fields and cross the snout of the Tarashing Glacier. The walk only takes about 2 to 3 hours. If we feel fit, we can go to the next camp (Herligkoffer Base Camp) or just relax at Rupal.
Day 7: Trek to Herligkoffer Base Camp 3,600 m.
Another 2 to 3 hours of walking brings us to this beautiful meadow campsite. Our camp is located near some springs and at the edge of the Bazhin Glacier. We start seeing views of Rakhiot Peak and Chongra Peaks of the Nanga Parbat massif.
Day 8: Trek to Latobah 3,650 m.
In about 2 to 3 hours of walking we will reach this famous campsite right under the largest wall in the world; the Rupal face of Nanga Parbat. The wall rises about 5,000 m. to the summit of this great mountain. On the way we cross the Bazhin Glacier.
Day 9: Trek to Shaigiri 3,700 m.
Trek takes about 4 to 5 hours of trekking. On the way will cross the snout of the Shaigiri Glacier. From Shaigiri we will also have awesome views of the Rupal face of Nanga.
Day 10: Trek to Mazeno Base Camp 4,000 m.
After crossing mountain streams and leaving the woods and pastures behind we enter the high meadows of the Mazeno valley. This takes about 3 to 5 hours of walking. Here we have outstanding views of Mazeno peaks.
Day 11: Trek to Mazeno High Camp 4,700 m.
Trekking day. It takes about 5 to 7 hours of steep hiking up the hill and the camp is located near the Mazeno Glacier.
Day 12: Trek to Laibh Meadows 4,200 m.
This is the apex of the walk. We will ascend Mazeno Pass (5,399 m.) and descend very steeply on the other side. The ascent is easier than the descent. Ropes will be fixed on the descent on 35% plus slopes. As always, we will be assisted by the staff. This will take about 8 plus hours.
Day 13: Trek to Zangot 2,700 m.
Trek takes about 6 hours of walking. We enter a land inhabited by people and walk through pastures. The day is long and involves an exhaustively steep descent. However, it is not technical as the descent from the Mazeno Pass.
Day 14: Aclimatization day
We will rest and enjoy of beautiful nature.
Day 15: Trek to Kutagali 3,000 m.
Trek takes about 4 to 5 hours and we walk along paths used by herders to reach their summer settlements.
Day 16: Trek to Shaichi 2,900 m.
In about 6 hours and after crossing the non-technical Karu Sagar Pass (4,900 m.), we reach another summer settlement called Shaichi. The Diamir face of Nanga overwhelms us continuously.
Day 17: Trek to Gutum Sagar 3,500 m.
We are now walking through forest and summer pastures. We will cross some streams on this leg of the trip. This takes 6 hours plus of walking.
Day 18: Trek to Jalipur High Camp 4,300 m.
We have an ascending walk for about 6 hours and have good views of Jalipur Peaks.
Day 19: Trek to Beyal 3,400 m.
Today we will cross the non-technical Khutsu Pass (4,840 m.). From the top of the pass Nanga is seen once again. The steep ascent to the pass takes about 3 hours and the descent to Beyal is done in about 5 hours. At Beyal we camp next to the Rakhiot Glacier.
Day 20: Trek to Fairy Meadows 3,200 m.
We have circumnavigated the great Nanga Parbat. This is an easy 2 hour walk through pine forest and incredible views. The sight of the north face of Nanga will never leave you!
Day 21: Drive to Chilas 1,000 m.
Drive with Jeep. Our jeeps will be ready to take us from the end of the road near Fairy Meadows. It is about 2 to 3 hours of driving down into the Indus gorge towards Chilas.
Day 22: Drive Rawalpindi / Islamabad
Drive with Jeep. About 8 hour drive on KKH, trek debriefing.
Day 23: Extra ‘cushion’ day!
Day 23 will be used as a ‘cushion’ day in case of delays in travel due to weather, route change, health, acclimatization issues during the trek, etc.
This is a tentative itinerary. For the enjoyment of your trip a ‘go with the flow’ attitude is necessary. Many factors will influence your trip, such as weather conditions, health, route conditions, etc.
Transfer to Islamabad airport for the flight back home.
Nanga Parbat, Sanskrit for “Naked Mountain” is so named because some of its slopes are too steep and bereft of vegetation and snow. According to the local old legend, Nanga Parbat is also called Diamir, which means abode of fairies. It is believed that the Queen of fairies lives there in a castle made of solid crystal-clear ice, which is guarded by gigantic snow serpents and frogs. The earlier disasters in climbing this mountain are attributed to the displeasure of fairies. Nanga Parbat is not a single peak but consists of 20km long series of peaks and ridges culminating in an ice crest of (8125m). Its South Face known as Rupal Face is (5000m) high, while the North or Raikot Face plunging over (7000m) from the summit to the Indus forms one of the world’s deepest gorge. This expedition takes us to the South side, which is known as Rupal Face. Nanga Parbat is the second highest mountain of Pakistan and ninth highest in the world. It is on the extreme west of the mighty Himalayas and separated from the Karakoram by the Indus River. Since the first disastrous British expedition led by A. F. Mummery in 1895, mountaineers have tried to climb its summit through different routes but few lucky ones have succeeded. In 1934 four German climbers and six porters perished in a storm. In 1937 disaster 18 Sherpas and 12 climbers were buried alive by avalanche that covered their camp. In fact Nanga Parbat has claimed more lives than any other 8000ers relative to the number of attempts, hence the frightening nickname of Killer Mountain. It was first climbed in 1953 by a joint Austrian - German Expedition. Hermann Buhl made the final climb in a tortuous 41 hours solo ordeal without oxygen. Italian mountaineer Reinhold Messner climbed the south face (Rupal Face) with his brother Gunther in 1970, descending the Diamir face, Gunther lost his life in an avalanche.