Dhaulagiri Circuit Trek

We are two Indian guys looking to explore the hidden valley and see Dhaulagiri(8167m asl) up close .This is a tough trek which will involve crossing two high altitude passes .We both have prior high altitude experience (We have been to wilderness areas in Indian Himalayas at altitude >4100m/4600m)

Planning to go to French pass and see Dhaulagiri up close .Route will be Marpha-YAKKHARKHA -Alubari -Dhampus pass -Hidden Valley-French Pass and Back .I am enclosing the itinerary below .

*Day 1 : Gorakhpur to Pokhara

*Day 2 : Pokhara Permits (TIMS,ACAP)

*Day 3 : Pokhara-Marpha(Stay overnight at Marpha)

*Day 4 : Marpha(2700m)-Yakkharka(3800m)(5km)

*Day 5: YaKkharka-Alubari, acclimatization day,Climbing to 5000m and back

*Day 6: Alubari-Hidden valley via dhampus pass(10km) (Start Early)

*Day 7: Hidden valley,French pass ,Exploration

*Day 8: Back to Marpha(14km),Start Early

*Day 9: Marpha to Pokhara

*Day 10 : Pokhara To Gorakhpur

We will start from Gorakhpur around 8th October .We are equipped with Ice axe,Crampons ,Stove ,food for all these days .We are cheap travellers/Hikers who don’t like spending on guides or expensive permits .Still ,we do know that this is a treacherous route and that’s the reason we are going to return from French pass instead of crossing the Glacier to Japanese or Italian Base camp .We will be avoiding glaciers and be wary of the AMS risk .We are looking for experienced hikers who are equipped with their own gear(Tent /Sleeping bag) and food .Essentially ,Just join us if you are around Marpha at that date and have prior high altitude experience .We will be confirming our departure around 10 days before .So ,if you are around Marpha at that point of time and wish to do this trek then feel free to join us .(P.S ,This is a difficult trek, You need to be adventurous and have prior high altitude experience.If things go bad or we see that someone has AMS sysmptoms ,we will immediately descend .Rescue is difficult in the hidden valley and extremely expensive.Only join us if you are in pokhara/Marpha/Jomsom around 8th october and wish to go there .We would be glad to have experienced,adventurous folks with us )

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India

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6 replies
  1. Hi ayush,
    I have been interested in this trek/ circuit for a couple of years now but i dont want to commit to a big group and $3000+ to do it. Recently met a guy who has guided this trek with world expeditions many times who explained the difficulties of the trek. This did not put me off but according to him the biggest danger is getting snowed into hidden valley(they did for four days) and the dampus pass is known for horrible weather, avalanches and difficulty of knowing the trail in snow/blizzards.
    Just wondering if you have some good track notes/ gps marks for the dampus pass? Also what plans do you have for getting snowed into hidden valley or any other emergency in hidden valley?
    I have trekked at over 5000m quite a few times and consider myself being able to do this mentally and physically as i know this will be a very difficult .
    I am flexible on dates and itinery as i will be in nepal sept-nov.
    I am not sure your thoughts on having a guide but i would be willing to pay for the guide myself if you didnt mind having one on the trip. I have really good contact. Otherwise even without the guide i am still interested.
    Regards alex

  2. Hey Alex, good to hear from you.
    We are aware of the risks, especially snowfall, Route finding, Avalanches and AMS. Personally,I normally take everything (Weather forecast, Trail finding, difficulty , etc) into consideration. I am aware of the 2014 distaster that struck in mid 2014.If it snows heavily in hidden valley, then things can get tricky. Keeping that in Mind, we always like to believe that we are responsible travellers and don’t mind returning back if we think that the conditions are too dangerous. We will check the weather forecast at Marpha and only proceed if the weather is favourable for the next 4-5 days. .
    I have studied the trail,route on google earth and i have zoomed in and seen the trail and followed it everwhere on the circuit. The glacier part is tricky and in bad weather, can be deadly. That is precisely the reason i won’t be going there. I will just be back from the french pass and Exploring the Hidden valley. We thought this would be the perfect trek to test ourselves as me and my friend have already been above 4200 and 4600 and trying to test ourselves.We have trekked in absolute wilderness among boulders and have been trying to look for more challenging trails. This one has been on my mind since the past 1.5 years.
    A Nepali friend of mine went to this trek on my recommendation last year with a friend,in mid. October. They did the whole
    Circuit in 7 days and didn’t face any real difficulty. There was a little snow beyond dhampus pass,but nothing treacherous. Normally on this trek, you will find other people and groups and a few other individual trekkers as well. We will Probably just follow them. That’s what my friend did last year. If weather forecast would be good, we will attempt it in the Dashain season. (October 8-15) or sometime around that date. Feel free to join us around that date.

    I have gone through all the Maps, blogs and all sorts of info i could find on this trek. Like i said, i have studied the trail on Google earth 3d and seen the slope and points of dangers.

    • If you insist on having a guide and paying for it then that would be terrific . Alternatively, we can also follow guided trekkers on their dates but be on our own and just be behind those guys. My friemd who did this trek last year did the same thing.
      Anyways, we are up for it. We are cheap travellers. Most of my high altitude treks are done in a budget of 3000-5000 Indian Rupees. That’s almost like 80USD.If you are okay with paying for the guide and carry the gear with yourself (Tent for yourself and the guide , food, sleeping bag), then we can definitely make this possible . We are well equipped ourselves with ice axes and Crampons,Tent, sleeping bags, stove and food. MY budget on an individual level would be 7000-8000 Indian. rupees (90$),including everything. For, you, i guess the permit would be slightly expensive but not too much. You will be hiring the guide by your own money, like you said. That would be expensive, but it would still won’t be as expensive as paying 3000$. I believe that you can easily do it in 300-400$, Guide included. Anyways, we would be there on Marpha around that date. If you feel like Trekking with us, join us there, we would be happy to trek with you.

  3. Hi ayush
    I am interested

    • Hey shoaib ,if you are in Pokhara around 5 th October then you can definitely join us .

  4. Hi ayush i am interested this trek

Logistics

Departed
ServiceIndependent
Duration 8 days
StartMarpha
FinishMarpha
SleepingCamping
PaceModerate
Budget$150 per person
BudgetShoestring