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Mera Peak is located at the head of the quiet and remote Hinku valley, an area of the Mount Everest region rarely frequented by trekkers or visitors. There are many approaches to Mera Peak Climbing; some are easy and some require the crossing of high and difficult passes.
The 6476m altitude does cover up for the technical differences hence good preparations physically and mentally are required. The other main reason people opt to climb Mera Peak is the magnificent summit view of the over-8000-meter-mountains such as Mt. Everest, 8848m, Mt. Lhotse, 8516m, Mt. Cho Oyu, 8201m, Mt. Makalu, 8463m, and Mt. Kanchenjunga, 8586m.
This extended and strenuous trek, circumnavigating the Manaslu range, is one that avid trekkers could only dream about till a few years back. Officially opened to trekking in 1990 and just as suddenly forbidden again, it was finally “reopened” in 1992 along with Mustang. A Government quota, however, limits the number of visitors to the area.
The best season for Mera Peak climbing is from March to May (Spring) and from September to November (Autumn). However, winter is also a great time to climb if you are well prepared for the cold weather. In the crisp and cold month of December, the views of the mountains are crystal clear and there are fewer tourists around. The duration of the Mera Peak Trip can be lengthened or shortened according to your preference. Nomadic Nepal will arrange every detail of your Mera Peak Climbing Expedition; lodge accommodation, food, as well as all the necessary climbing and camping equipment required during the climb.
The Mera Peak climb is a fairly taxing physical challenge at altitude. You build your mountain fitness during the trek in which involves ten days of walking over steep mountainous terrain at between 3000m and 5000m. The paths are well made but some of the ascents are long and sustained. It can be quite hot in the lower valleys and you will certainly break quite a sweat and be breathing hard.
The altitude you ascend is great enough to suffer you with altitude sickness. Not only the altitude; the snowy surroundings will make your climb really difficult. The weather also remains unstable at such heights. A perfectly good day can suddenly turn into blizzards. The last section of the peak is a real adventure. The final 600-700m requires climbing through snow, rocks, and ice. This part of the trek may require the use of basic mountaineering tools. Overall, Mara Peak Climbing is a strenuous and physically demanding one. However, with adequate preparation and physical fitness, you can conquer this towering peak. The success of this trek also largely depends upon the preparation, trekking route, trekking seasons, trekking gears, etc.
The early morning flight to the Tenzing-Hillary Airport, Lukla, takes only 40-minutes. It is an amazing flight, as the mountains seem to tower around the plane. We land in a valley surrounded by high mountains peaks. Our climbing team is waiting to meet us and soon we start out on our trek. Beginning at Lukla and then descending is good for acclimatization. The trail leads through forests down to the traditional villages Surke and Pakhepani and rhododendron forests. There is a great view from Paiya: Knogde Ri, Khatang, Tang Ragi Tu and other 7000+ meter peaks.
From Paiya there is a short descent to a wooden bridge which we cross and make a steep and slippery ascent to Kari La Pass, 3145m. A narrow trail winds down through the rhododendron and bamboo forests. The scene is beautiful with the Dudhkoshi River valley below and the Dudh Kund Himal in the background. Pangom is farming and trading village.
The rocky trail descends to a rhododendron forest. Mani walls mark the trail as we trek over hills and ridges. The south face of Mera Peak, 6064m and Naulekh Peak tower ahead of us as we zigzag through pine and rhododendron forests and finally descend steeply to Sibuche.
Today our trail starts angling toward the north with plenty of ascents and descents and rhododendron and bamboo forests. We cross the crystal clear Hinku (Inkhu) Khola on suspension bridges several times. We may sight some wildlife like the sloth bear, wild cats and a variety of birds.
We start out trekking on narrow trails through bamboo and pine forests. As we follow the river, the Hinku Valley widens and we enjoy the view of Mera Peak ahead of us. Beyond Tashing Dingma there are a few teahouses where we have lunch. The trail follows on the ridge above the river all the way to Kothe.
We ascend gradually following the Hinku River. Mera Peak and other mountains tower around us now. On the ridge above the river are pastures. Gondishung is a summer herders’ settlement where there is an ancient monastery. The trees become sparser as we are nearing the snow line. Thangnak is a summer grazing area.
The trail crosses boulders left by Sabai Tsho, the glacial lake which is close to the trail north of Thangnak. We follow the lateral moraine of Dig Glacier to the grassy Dig Khraka, which offers spectacular views of Charpate Himal. The trail climbs through moraines to the snout of the Hinku Nup and Shar Glaciers and then climbs more steeply to Khare. From a ridge above Khare, there is an excellent view of the route we will take to Mera Peak.
To acclimatize, we spend the day exploring and practicing climbing techniques with our guide. If we are feeling energetic, we might trek as far as Mera La.
We ascend for three hours over a boulder-strewn path up to the glacier. There is a short climb to a glacial plateau leading up to Mera La. The views from the pass are spectacular. From the pass, we descend about 100m towards the Honggu side and set up our base camp on the rocky moraine below the ice.
We make the steep ascent to Mera La and continue up the rock-strewn north flank to a rocky outcropping where we set up high camp. From High Camp, we enjoy the view of Mt. Everest, Makalu, Kanchanjunga, Cho Oyu, and south face of Lotshe, Nuptse, Chamlang and Baruntse. We can also see most of the route to the summit. Overnight in Tent Included Meals (B)
We have an alpine start before daybreak as the climb usually takes 5-6 hours. We put on crampons and rope together for the steep climb to the summit. There are a number of crevasses, so we will need to take precautions if there has been recent snowfall. The is a short sharp scramble up an ice-wall to the summit is well rewarded with spectacular views of Cho Oyu, 8201m, Lhotse, 8516m, Everest, 8848m, Makalu, 8463m, Pumori, 7161m, Lobuche, 6145m and many others. It takes about 2 hours to retrace our steps to Khare. This is a very long but satisfying day!
There is no guarantee that there will be favorable weather for scheduled summit day. In case we are unable to summit Mera Peak on day 14 due to weather or any other reason like someone in the group having altitude related problems, this extra day gives some flexibility.
We descend into the Hinku Valley to Kothe. Khote and it stays on the open hill side which lies west of the Hinku River. The winds blowing down the forest makes the descent quicker. We get fantastic views looking back on Mera Peak.
Today, we again climb up about two hours through the lush forest on the west side of the Hinku Valley to Thuli Kharka. It’s nice walk through the red Rhododendron forest with beaten trail of Himalaya of Nepal. We observe the wide range of Mera peaks, Mera North, Mera Central, Mera South from Thuli Kharka.