Nepal 2013

Annapurna Circuit


The map above shows the trekking route in red with the start/end locations (Besi Sahar and Naya Pul) and each night's village as a blue dot.  The vehicle routes to and from the trek are in orange.

To get to the start of the Annapurna Circuit, I took a "tourist" bus from Kathmandu to Dumre, price was Rs 800.  The bus ride was fairly comfortable, although we spent some time in a traffic jam just outside of Kathmandu.  Around 12:30pm I got off the bus in Dumre.  The bus continued on to Pokhara, but I needed to get to Besi Sahar.  I had intended to take a "local" bus to Besi Sahar, but instead I was talked into taking a car, and negotiated a price of US$30.  The car was probably quicker, and based on my later experience with a local bus, probably much more comfortable as well.  We stopped for a short "welcoming" ceremony along the way where I was given a flower.  We arrived in Besi Sahar around 2:30 or so, and it is a surprisingly big city.  I had had enough of big cities for the time being, so rather than staying there I started trekking after stopping at the police check post where they checked my TIMS card.  There were two "permits" necessary for this trek, one being the TIMS card (Rs 2010) and the other being the Annapurna Conservation Area permit (Rs 2000).  I had gotten both of these the previous day in Kathmandu at the Nepal Tourism Board.

Days after that first trekking day generally started pretty early.  I usually started trekking around 7 or 8 am, and often reached my goal for the day by noon.  I often had lunch at the same guest house I would spend the night at.

The picture below is a rough elevation profile of the Annapurna Circuit.  The two prominent humps are Thorung La in the center, and Ghorepani on the right.  The start of the trek at Besi Sahar is 2493 ft, and the end at Naya Pul is 3510 ft.

elevation profile

This trek has been divided into four sections:

Ascending the Marsyangdi River valley - Sep 27 to Oct 6
Crossing Thorung La (17,768 feet) - Oct 7
Descending the Kali Gandaki valley - Oct 8 to Oct 14
Up to Ghorepani and on to Pokhara - Oct 15 to Oct 20


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