GREAT HIMALAYA TRAILS (GHT) is a re-brand title for the original
Great Himalaya Trail’. Whereas the original trail was a route
across the country from east to west, the new re-brand adds a
collection of various trails in the upper and middle districts of
Nepal to the original route. The purpose of this re-brand is to open
up new trekking products and support inclusive rural development in
The original concept of - 'The
Great Himalaya Trail' - was to
establish a single long distance trekking trail from the east end to
the west end of
Nepal that includes a total of roughly 1,700
kilometers long path. There is a proposed trail of more than 4,500
kilometres (2,800 mi) stretching the length of the Greater Himalaya
Nanga Parbat in Jammu ">
In November 2014, cross-country hikes of
have been undertaken by a well-funded international non-governmental
organization and visiting some of the most remote communities on
earth, it would pass through the diverse landscapes found in the
region including valleys, plateaus and landscapes. Nepal’s proposed
GHT has 10 sections comprising a network of upper and lower routes.
The GHT (so-called upper and lower) currently can be roughly mapped
out through existing routes, but these routes may not provide a
continuous and uninterrupted trail.
In 2011 British legendary ultra trail runner
Lizzy Hawker attempted a
solo cross of GHT but failed. She is trying again starting mid
September 2016 from East
Kanchenjunga BC presumably lasting 45 days.
* 1 Introduction
* 2 History
* 2.1 1980s
* 2.2 1990s
* 2.3 2000s
* 2.4 2010s
* 3 Sections
* 3.3 Clusters of The
Great Himalaya Trail
* 3.3.3 Everest and Rolwaling
* 3.3.4 Rara and Jumla
* 4 Routes of The
Great Himalaya Trail
* 4.1 High Route
* 4.2 Low Route
* 5 References
* 6 Further reading
* 7 External links
The proposed trail links together a range of the less explored
tourism destinations of Nepal’s mountain region.
The trekking route crosses both well-known areas as well as other
lesser-known sites that are very poor but have enormous tourism
potential. The purpose of developing the trail was to promote
socioeconomic benefits to mountain communities. The Great Himalaya
Trail covers 16 districts, ranging from
Dolpa that connects with the
Tibetan plateau, to Darchula, which borders India. Trekking in Nepal
is a major attraction for tourists, but popular destinations have been
limited to the regions of Solukhumbu, Everest,
Annapurna and Langtang.
The route offers diversity in terms of landscapes, flora and fauna,
people and culture: from snow leopards to red pandas ; from
sub-tropical jungle to fragile high-altitude eco-systems; from the
famous Sherpas, to Shamanism, to the ancient Bön Buddhist culture in
The formation of a trail along the Greater Himalaya Range was
precluded by access restrictions to certain areas in Nepal,
Bhutan requiring detours into the mid-hills away from the Greater
Himalaya Range. These access restrictions were eased or lifted, and in
2002, with further restrictions being lifted in border areas of Nepal,
it became feasible for the first time. Many expeditions have walked
great distances across the Himalaya including:
Peter Hillary (son of Sir Edmund), Chhewang Tashi and Graeme
Dingle walked from
Sikkim to the
* 1981–82: Hugh Swift and
Arlene Blum completed a nine-month
* 1983: British brothers Richard and Adrian Crane ran the Himalayas,
Nanga Parbat in less than 100 days. The route
required a large deviation from the
Great Himalaya Range to cross the
* 1990: Sorrell Wilby and Chris Ciantar made a traverse from Kashmir
Arunachal Pradesh .
Brandon Wilson and Cheryl Wilson trekked 1,000 km on
horseback from Lhasa,
Tibet to Kathmandu,
Nepal over 40 days. The
Tibet border re-opened to travelers a day before their journey began.
Their adventure/peace trek is documented in the book Yak Butter Blues
* 1994: From October 21 to December 1, 1994, French runners
Paul-Eric Bonneau and Bruno Poirier clocked up 2,100 km and 55,000
meters of altitude, crossing from East to West, from Pashupatinagar to
Mahakali, traversing in sometimes difficult weather conditions.
* 1997: Alexandre Poussin and
Sylvain Tesson walked a 5,000 km route
Tajikistan . They completed it in roughly six months.
Rosie Swale-Pope ran the length of
Nepal in the mid-hills
Great Himalaya range with a support team, covering an estimated
1,700 km in 68 days to raise money for the
Nepal Trust charity.
* 2007: Dr Gillian Holdsworth walked across
Nepal with guide, Sonam
Sherpa, to raise money for the Britain
Nepal Medical Trust.
* 2008–09: Nepal's
Great Himalaya Trail route was first walked
over two seasons by a team led by Robin Boustead, who did five years
of research treks before walking the route. The walk took a total of
162 days and is documented in a book of the same title. . In
acknowledgements to this book, the author mentions a team of three
Sherpa guiding him "every step of the way."
Sean Burch , multiple Guinness World record holder and
hailed by CNN as one of the most extreme adventurers on the planet,
set an official world record by crossing an outlined idea of the Great
Himalaya Trail in 49 days, 6 hours and 8 minutes.
* 2010: Three young travelers Dipesh Joshi, Surose Dangol, Raju
Maharjan from a group named The Pathfinders completed Nepal's great
Himalayan Trail section in one go.
* 2011: Justin Lichter and Shawn Forry were attempting to walk '8000
m East to 8000 m West' from
Nanga Parbat , they wrote
a book after the walk.
* 2011: Sunil Tamang solo-hiked an outlined area of the Great
Himalaya Trail from
Kanchenjunga in the east to
Rara Lake in western
Nepal in 128 days on his own route starting on his 20th birthday
making him the youngest person to hike the so-called trail.
* 2012: Gerda Maria Pauler (partly accompanied by Temba Bhoti and a
small group of porters) followed the
Great Himalaya Trail High Route
concept 1700 km across
Kanchenjunga BC to Hilsa) to raise funds
for Autism Care Nepal.
* 2012: Paribesh Pradhan trekked a conceptual version of the Great
Himalaya Trail from
Kanchenjunga to Darchula in 98 days as a part of
his project "The
Great Himalaya Trail - My Climate Initiative".
* 2014: John Fiddler, Kathleen Egan, and Seth Wolpin traversed the
proposed high route of the GHT and became the first team to cross all
five technical passes without porter support. They trekked from
Taplejung to Hilsa and finished in 87 days. Kathleen became the first
woman to hike the high route self-supported.
Bhutan is organised into different routes that you can traverse the
country. Robin Boustead summarises the route as: “After arriving in
Paro, head to Shana and Drugyal Dzong and the beginning of the
Jhomolhari Trek. Continue around over the Nyele Pass to join and then
follow the Ghasa Hot Springs trail to Thanza and the Snowman Trek.
From the high lakes descend to Ungar on the Gankar Punsum route before
following the Rhodang La Trek to Trashi Yangtse in the east. This
route takes about 40 days depending on fitness.”
Robin Boustead and his team (Pema Tsiring Sherpa, Lakpa Sherpa and
Karma Sherpa) have claimed to have hiked a trail that links each himal
Kanchenjunga to Api. The upper route passes from East to West
through established trekking areas of
Makalu Barun ,
Rolwaling Himal ,
Ganesh Himal ,
Rara Lake and
Humla finishing on the
Tibetan border at Hilsa.
CLUSTERS OF THE GREAT HIMALAYA TRAIL NEPAL
Kanchenjunga, at 8,586 metres (28,169 ft) is the world’s third
highest mountain and lies on the border with Sikkim. Eastern
generally more developed than western
Nepal and more prosperous. This
is due in part to the more favourable climate with its higher
rainfall, the employment of Rai and Limbu people in the Gorkha
regiments and their income. Rugged terrain however means that mountain
areas are especially remote.
The region is named after Mt Makalu, which at 8,463 metres (27,766
ft) is the world’s fifth highest mountain. It is home to more than
3000 species of flowering plants, including 25 species of rhododendron
and hundreds of varieties of orchids .
Everest And Rolwaling
Everest is also known as Sagarmatha in
Nepal and Chomolungma in
Tibet; the Everest region is known locally as the Khumbu. Its home to
three of the highest peaks in the world: Everest 8,848 metres (29,029
ft); Lhotse, fourth highest at 8,516 metres (27,940 ft); and
Cho Oyu ,
sixth highest at 8,201 metres (26,906 ft).
Rolwaling Himal is home to Tamang, Sherpa, eastern Gurung and the
indigenous Thami people. It has no formally protected areas as it is
rich in wildlife including red panda, black bear and leopard cat.
Rara And Jumla
This trail starts from Jumla Bazar and heads to the Mugu district. It
takes 2 days to complete the trail. Jumla Bazar is 2300 m to
Nauri-ghat. Daphe Lekh is about 4500 m high. The climb is very
treacherous as you can only climb 200 meters because of the very rough
terrain. Due to the conditions, it is not suitable for people who have
altitude sickness while climbing this. From then it is all downhill up
to Nauri Ghat. From Nauri Ghat, it is a 2-hour descend to the Mugu
district. Along the way, there is a village called Bhulbhele which is
around 7 hours from Nauri Ghat where one can choose to go left to
reach Rara lake or walk to Gamgadi which is part of Mugu district.
Both take 4 hours to reach.
ROUTES OF THE GREAT HIMALAYA TRAIL
Trekkers can choose between two routes: the high route (extreme
route) and the low route (cultural route).
Nepal’s high route starts north of the
Kanchenjunga Base Camp and
ends in Hilsa at Nepal’s Tibetan border in the Western district of
Humla. The trail stretches over a distance of about 1,700 km and
passes through high altitude mountain landscapes, visiting some of the
most remote villages on earth where life remains as it was centuries
Trekking along the GHT high route crosses over high altitudes up to
6,146 m and the whole trek takes about 150 days. Proper trekking gear
and mountaineering equipment is needed and it should be for the
physically fit. For safety, a local mountain guide follows travellers
especially in high altitudes.
This route is shorter than the high route, the GHT low route
stretches over a distance of 1,500 km and the whole trek will roughly
take around 100 days. The GHT low route goes through the country’s
mid hills with an average altitude of 2,000 metres (6,600 ft).
However, there are many passes to cross with the highest being the
Jang La at 4,519 metres (14,826 ft) between Dhorpatan and
Trekking along GHT low route means walking through forests, pastures,
green rice terraces and fertile agricultural land, providing the basis
for Nepal’s rich culture and civilization. There are a lot of local
settlements of many different cultural groups.
* ^ "
Great Himalaya Trails in Nepal".
* ^ http://www.pilgrimstales.com/yakbutterblues.html
* Hillary, Peter ; Dingle, Graham (1984). First Across the Roof of
the World: the story of the first crossing of the Himalayas from one
end to the other. Hodder & Stoughton. Retrieved 2010-09-09.
* Blum, Arlene (2005). Breaking Trail. Harcourt Books. Retrieved
* Poussin, Alexandre; Tesson, Sylvain (1999). La marche dans le
ciel. Broché. Retrieved 2010-09-09.
* Pauler, Gerda Maria 2013.
Great Himalaya Trail 1700 across the
roof of the world. Baton Wicks. Retrieved 2014-08-23.