How difficult is the lower Dolpo trek?
Trek in the Himalayas is never easy wherever you go. The Lower Dolpo trek is a moderate-level trek, which means ideal for beginner trekkers. The trail can get a bit challenging for first-time trekkers, however, if you have previous trekking experience, then you can do this trek smoothly. Lower Dolpo is one of the less-traveled trekking routes in the Himalayas. Therefore, the trail lacks basic services.
Untouched by the mainstream trekking routes, you'll be exploring an isolated and slightly offbeat terrain. The long walk (5 to 6 hours a day) on uneven, steep trails is difficult. Therefore, the trekkers have to be physically fit to join Lower Dolpo trekking. Maintain your pace and do not rush while trekking. Be attentive to your surroundings and follow the guidance of your team leader.
The lower Dolpo trek goes above 5,000 meters while crossing the Baga La and Numa La passes. As difficult as it is to cross these two passes, the high altitude makes it even more challenging. The lower oxygen level will tire you sooner than you can imagine and put a lot of pressure on your body, resulting in exhaustion even after a short walk.
Likewise, you also have to be careful of altitude sickness, which is quite common on treks like this. We do have ample acclimatization days in our lower Dolpo itinerary, which ensures a safe journey. However, sometimes the trekker can get altitude sickness symptoms even after our best efforts. So, in a situation like that, our guide will take necessary actions and make sure to maintain the safety of the group.
Training for the lower Dolpo trekking
To begin your trekking journey, first, you need to ensure that you are in good physical shape. Since your physical resilience plays a significant role in the success of your trekking. To bring your training, you should focus more on cardiovascular activities, strength endurance activities, and hiking-specific training, as well.
Some of the suggested training activities for the lower Dolpo trek include running, jogging, walking on an inclined treadmill, swimming, working on an elliptical machine, stair stepping, trail running, or walking up and down hills. You can start your training regime a month before your trek and be prepared for your journey.
Lower Dolpo trek Solo/Private/Group
You can join lower Dolpo trekking as a solo trekker with us or in a group. Solo trekkers have two options, either trek within our fixed departure groups or do a private trek. Our fixed departure groups are small, so you'll get a lot of attention from our guide. If the group has more than 8 trekkers, an assistant guide will also join the group.
Lower Dolpo trek cost
Lower Dolpo trek costs anywhere between $1500 to $3000 depending upon the duration of the trekking, accommodation type, and transportation. Get in touch with us to know more about our lower Dolpo trek package cost.
Although the permit cost, food, accommodation, and private transport facility will be included in your package with most of your other expenses, it is highly advisable to carry additional money with you. It will be a lot more feasible for you to carry some cash for miscellaneous expenses.
The lower Dolpo trek package does not include your personal expenses, international airfare, expenses for other activities, and your personal transportation costs. You need to take care of other personal expenses such as hot showers, charging stations, souvenirs, beverages, and mineral water yourself.
In case you have a last-minute change in plans and wish to stay for more in Kathmandu, then for those times, you have to bear additional charges.
What permits do I need for the lower Dolpo trek?
To trek in the Lower Dolpo region, you need to carry the lower Dolpo restricted area entry permit. You can get this special permit from the migration office. Without this permit, you can’t complete your trek. The cost of this permit is lower compared to the upper Dolpo permit. You need to pay 20 US$ per person for a week. After that, you need to pay 5 US$ per person for additional days.
Lower Dolpo trek best time
The best season to go trekking in the lower Dolpo region is from early October to late November. This is the month of autumn in Nepal and also the best season to trek. Due to the stable weather, trekking is pleasant and fun. The blue skies and crystal clear visibility makes the views excellent.
Another option is to go in the spring season, which lasts from early March to mid-May. From having fewer chances of landslides, rainfall, snowfall, and bad weather, to offering mesmerizing views of lush green forests and colorful rhododendrons, spring has got everything.
Lower Dolpo is a tea house trek. These teahouses are run by locals who take care of almost every necessity of the travelers passing by. The more you will pay, the more facilities you get. However, almost all the tea houses are equipped with basics like a bed to sleep in, a washroom, and healthy and hygienic food. If you wish to avail extra facilities like hot showers, WiFi, and a battery charging station, you will need to pay extra for that.
During your trekking journey to lower Dolpo, it is extremely important to eat a balanced diet and sleep properly, as this not only ensures that your body gets enough rest after a long trek but also ensures that you are all set for the next day. Along the way, you will come across many teahouses, which serve traditional Nepalese food, Tibetan dishes, and some western items.
You can easily have the most common food like Dal Bhat and seasonal vegetables along with other western food varieties. You can also find varieties of beverages such as tea, coffee, cold drinks, hot lemon, and other alcoholic beverages along the way.
Lower Dolpo Trek explores the remotest part of the Himalayas, and air evacuation is the only quickest way to provide you with medical assistance in case of an emergency. You cannot join lower Dolpo trekking with us without travel insurance. Travel insurance should cover emergency air evacuation. You can also include medical bills and flight cancellations in your insurance.
Travel Tips (electricity, internet, ATM, luggage, tipping, personal expenses)
Changing - There will be electricity in most of the villages along the route. Do know that there can be electricity cut off sometimes due to unstable weather. Locals also use solar power and can charge you a few extra bucks for charging or a hot shower. Get yourself spare batteries or a solar charger for a backup.
Internet - No wifi available on the lower Dolpo trekking route. Your only option to use the internet while on the trail is by using a Nepali sim card for cellular data. Our team will help you get one on your request. You'll not get a connection everywhere though.
ATM - There are no ATM lounges on the way to lower Dolpo. You have to withdraw additional money to use while trekking in the city.
Tip - It is up to you to tip or not, but if you are happy with the service of the crew members, then tipping is the best way to express your gratitude. The team leader/guide will help you with the tipping at the end of the trek. Tipping in the group will cost less per head. You can tip USD 2 to drive, USD 5 to the tour guide, and USD 100 to the trek guide/porters.
Luggage - You will pack all the clothing for the trek in the duffel bag given by the company. The porters will carry the heavy duffel bags. Each trekker has a 10 kg weight limit. You can trek with a backpack on you weighing under 5 kg.