best high passes treks in Nepal

5 best high passes treks in Nepal

If you have had a longstanding love for the Himalayans, crossing its enthralling passes may be something that you have always looked forward to. However, crossing these high passes is not something that you can do on a whim. For it, you need a strong determination, willpower, and the thirst to complete it. It is something that is only meant for true adventure seekers.

Here, we have listed our picks for the five best passes treks in Nepalese Himalayans. Read through them and find out which one will be the best for the daredevil in you.

Everest Three Passes Trek

Everest Three high passes trek

This trek involves crossing not one, not two, but three awesome Himalayan passes! Thus, it is safe to say that Everest Three Passes Trek is the mother of all the high passes trekking on the earth. Many don’t know this, but this trek can also be called the Everest Circuit Trek. The trek comes full circle in Lukla, the gateway to the Himalayans.

After rising from Lukla to Chhukung, you will cross Kongma La pass (5,535m) to reach Lobuche and Everest Base Camp. You will then cross the Cho La pass (5,430m) to reach Gokyo, and finally, the Renjo La pass to reach Thame and Namche Bazaar. As high as these passes are, these aren’t very technical to climb. But, since all of them are above the elevation of 5,00m, it is extremely important to acclimatise properly. If the weather is favourable, you won’t even need the help of tools like crampons, axes, and ropes to cross these passes.

Thorang La Pass Trekking

Annapurna circuit trek

At an elevation of 5,416m, Thorang La Pass is the highest pass in Annapurna Himalayas. Thorung La Pass Trek connects two of the most popular and picturesque regions in Nepal – Manang and Mustang. It is a somewhat difficult trek and involves potential risks as well. However, the views of the mountains and the nearby vicinity from this pass are worth all the trouble and hassle. From here, you can have pretty amazing views of several peaks of Annapurna and Dhaulagiri massifs.

The trek starts either from Besi Shahar in Lamjung or Jagat in Kaski. The hike up to the pass from Manang isn’t challenging, but still, it is a long way at high elevation. Thus, you must plan your itinerary very carefully to avoid acute mountain sickness. If anything happens, the only option you will have is to return all the way to Besi Shahar. But the motor road is now built all the way to Manang in case of any emergency and for the transport of goods. 

Larkya Pass Trek

Manaslu circuit trek

Larkya Pass Trek or famously known as Manaslu circuit trek is an unforgettable journey to the Himalayan that will take you to a hidden reserve of rich Tibetan culture. It involves crossing high passes at 5,160m/16,930ft and connects Mansalu and Annapurna trekking region. Thus, it is safe to say that this trek itinerary beautifully blends the cultural and adventurous elements into one to make your journey a truly memorable one.

The trek commences from Arughat. However, it is also possible to begin from Soti Khola or Macha Khola. Crossing the Larkya La Pass is indeed a very challenging adventure. But, it will take you through the wild and remote sections of the Nepalese Himalayans. During your trek, you can witness very varied and amazing scenery as well. But, please remember that the passes usually only during the trekking season. It is possible to trek during monsoon, but the snow makes it impossible to cross the pass in winter months.

Ganja La Pass Trek

Winter high passes

Without a shadow of a doubt, Ganja La trek is the most dangerous and difficult trekking route in the Langtang region. But, the steep crossing of the Ganja La (5,106m) from Kyanjin Gompa in Langtang to reach Take Ghyang in Helambu will be the most satisfying and memorable trekking journey you will ever make.

From the top of the pass, you can have mesmerizing views of the Langtang Lirung and other equally awesome Tibetan peaks, including an eight-thousander called Shisha Pangma. In short, you can say that this trek comprises of the best of the Langtang region. But, also remember that crossing the pass involves climbing through a very steep section through an avalanche-prone valley. You will require extensive camping equipment to complete this trek.

Tashi Laptcha Pass Trek

Rolwaling and Everest Trek

One more in our list from the beautiful and remote Rolwaling region. A high trail to Everest from Rolwaling pass will take you across the 5,755m/18,882ft high Tashi Laptcha Pass. Traversing from Rolwaing region to Everest region, this trekking route offers a significant variation in landscape. Above all, the main advantage of trekking this route is that it will take you to two of the most beautiful lakes in Nepal – Tso Rolpa Lake

The trek will commence from Gongor Khola and end in Lukla. During the trek, there will be significant altitude gains. Thus, it is incredibly crucial to properly acclimatize. Since the region will receive very heavy snowfall, we don’t recommend trekking from late-November to early-May. 

About Author

Passang is a managing director and national mountain leader at Highland Expeditions. With over 8 years of experience as an Operation Manager prior to founding Highland Expeditions, he has acquired sound knowledge about the local tourism in Nepal and the Himalayas. To add credit, he has also operated many treks and climbs successfully ensuring the safety priority and service paramount.

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