Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek
Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek Overview
Kanchenjunga is the 3rd highest mountain peak in the world which proudly lies at the height of 8585m. It is beautifully located in the far eastern region, Taplejung District, Nepal. Kanchenjunga has got its name from the Tibetan word which refers to five great “treasures in the snow”. This basically symbolizes its five peaks as gold, silver, precious stones, grain, and holy scripture. Kanchenjunga was a forbidden area and was publicly opened in 1988. However, it is still in a restricted area and requires a special permit to enter. Also, there is a restriction for trekking solo and without a licensed guide in Kanchenjunga. Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek is a great way to experience the beauty of Kanchenjungha.
The Kanchenjunga circuit trek is one of the most explored and popular trekking destinations. The place is highly protected by Kanchenjunga Conservation Area. The trail passes through hundreds of rare flora and fauna. Rhododendrons, green meadows, birch and pines, snow leopard, red panda, musk deer, etc are the major vegetation here. There is basically two base camp in the Kanchenjunga circuit. One being the south base camp (4610m) and the other North base camp (5190m). Kanchenjunga is one of the best yet less crowded areas which makes the journey more peaceful.
The Kanchenjunga trek takes around 23-24 days if you take proper rest and take some days off. This trek will cost you around 2000-2500$ with all the cost of flights, food and accommodation. However you need to know that the cost usually depends on mode of transportation, foods and accommodation and the number of days you take.
Highlights of Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek
- Exploring the diverse flora and fauna of Kanchenjunga Conservation Area which includes Rhododendrons, oaks, snow leopard, red panda, blue sheep, etc.
- Charming view of Mt Makalu and the east face of Mt. Everest
- Adventurous walk through glaciers
- Stunning view of the world’s 3rd highest Mountain peak, Mt Kanchenjunga
- Day 1- Kathmandu to Bhadrapur (45 minutes flight).
- Day 2- Birtamod to Taplejung (8-10 hours drive.)
- Day 3- Taplejung to Chiruwa (6 to 7 hours walk)
- Day 4- Chiruwa to Lelep, (5-6 hours walk)
- Day 5- Lelep to Amjilosa. (5 hours’ walk).
- Day 6- Amjilosa to Gyabla.
- Day 7- Gyabla to Gunsa (4 to 5 hours).
- Day 8- Ghunsa to Kambachen (around 4,100m).
- Day 9- Kambachen to Lhonak
- Day 10- Lhonak to Pangpema (3 hours walk)
- Day 11- Lhonak to Ghunsa.(8 hours walk)
- Day 12- Ghunsa to Amjilosa.(7 hours walk)
- Day 13- Amjilosa to Tapethok.(7 hours walk)
- Day 14- Tapethok to Mitlung.(7 hours walk)
- Day 15- Mitlung-Taplejung
- Day 16- Taplejung-Birtamod-Kathmandu
Safety and difficulties of EBC
Kanchenjunga circuit trek can be quite challenging and difficult. This is a moderately difficult trek. However, the level of difficulty entirely depends on your physical and mental fitness. But you can build your muscle strength, make your body flexible by practicing some light exercise, running, and jogging. The trek to Kanchenjunga is all about walking 5-6 hours per day for at least 20 days. This solo reason is enough to make this trek challenging. The trails are rugged, steep, maybe snowy in off-seasons. The maximum height in this trek is 4610m and 5190m both being south and north base camp of Kanchenjunga with other high passes on the way. There is a high risk of mountain sickness. The primary cause of altitude sickness is a decrease in the amount of oxygen in the atmosphere. It’s important to carry handheld oximetry. Oxygen saturation below 75% may be a risk.
Symptoms of Mountain sickness
- Loss of appetite
- Shortness of breath
- Fast heartbeats
Preventing mountain sickness
- Walk slow
- Stay hydrated
- Have nutritional food
- Have enough rest
- Avoid smoking and alcohol
Medicines for mountain sickness
- Ibuprofen, paracetamol (for headache)
- Promethazine (for nausea)
Clothing and equipment
|Trekking shocks||Torch lights|
|Water proof pants||Sunglasses|
|Water proof jackets||Beanies and gloves|
|Warm shirts and t shirts||Medicines|
|Thermal tops and bottoms||Toiletries|
|Fleece jacket||Safety kit|
|Down jacket||Hand sanitizers|
|Trekking pole||Water bottles and water purifier|
|Raincoats||Trash bag and tissue papers|
|Duffel bags||Power banks|
|Passport size photographs||Permits|
Travel insurance– Trekking to high altitudes can always be risky. Travel Insurance is something you might want to do before trekking anywhere. Sometimes in emergency cases, people need to be evacuated through a helicopter and get medical service. So, in such cases, your travel insurance will be bearing the cost for you. Seeing all these benefits,
The government of Nepal has made travel insurance mandatory thing before trekking. However, it is very important to mention the heights and all the places you will be reaching during your trek. Your insurance entirely depends on the details you have provided earlier. Travel insurance costs you around 150$ which is good for 1 month.
Visas/passports– If you are not a Nepalese or Indian citizen, then a visa and a passport are mandatory. You can get your Nepalese Visa at Tribhuvan airport in Kathmandu. The passport must hold a visa of a minimum of 6 months.