Ascent to the Mera Peak
19-day adventure

Climb Mera Peak

Nepal
  • Trekking peaks
  • Trekking & Hiking
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Code: NPMP

19 days
4/5

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Our Nepal office was set up back in 2007 and is expertly managed by Everest summiteer Pimba Tenjing. Our carefully chosen, experienced guides and porters are exceptional at looking after you throughout your trek, so you can concentrate on enjoying the outstanding Everest and Annapurna regions. After your adventure in the Himalaya, our team can also provide excursions to Chitwan National Park in the south, where you can search the humid jungle...
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Kandoo's view

Mera Peak is 6476m and is the highest trekking peak in Nepal. At this altitude the oxygen content of air is less than half of what it is at sea level - for this reason we would not recommend you take on Mera as your first high-altitude trek. You need to understand how your body acclimatises to altitude before taking on a climb like Mera Peak. If you have already done a high altitude trek and coped well, then Mera is the perfect next adventure. The extreme altitude does mean that no matter how fit you are, climbing Mera Peak will be a tough challenge. The challenge is very much about stamina and endurance though, as no technical skills are need to complete the climb. We think it is definitely worth the effort!

The expedition starts with a beautiful approach up the Arun Valley which takes you away from all the crowds on the Everest trek . On this part of the trek you will see local villages farming the terraces as they have done for generations. The highlights are the views from high camp, and from the summit itself, which are breath-taking - Everest, Lhotse, Makalu and Baruntse can all be seen clearly. Since you will be climbing through the night on this ascent, you can stop and watch the sunrise capture the heads of these mountains as dawn breaks.

Trip highlights

  • Summit the highest trekking peak in Nepal
  • Approach through the unspoilt Arun Valley
  • Lodge and tent-based accommodation

Experiences

  • Trekking peaks
    Lake at Colamphulaptsa
    Head to the top of a real mountain summit for a real sense of achievement
  • Trekking & Hiking
    Hikers in Thorong, during the Annapurnas Tour
    Our core collection of treks and hikes, through some of the world's most outstanding landscapes

Gallery

Itinerary

  • Day 1

    ARRIVE IN KATHMANDU

    All trekkers need to organise their own flights to Kathmandu International Airport (KTM). The Kandoo team will meet you at Kathmandu airport and transfer you to your pre-trek hotel. Later you will attend a pre-trek briefing with your Lead Guide to prepare you for the challenge ahead.

    • Accomodation: Hotel
  • Day 2

    FLIGHT TO LUKLA – TREK TO PAIYA

    The flight is less than an hour but takes us into the heart of rural Nepal and ends with the breath-taking landing at Lukla. From Lukla we descend first to Surke where we cross the river before climbing steeply to Pakhepani and then more gently to Chutok La. From there it is about another hour of undulating Nepali flat (sometimes up, sometimes down!) to Paiya.

    • Transport: Flight (0.8 hour, 136 km)
    • Hiking time: 7 - 8 hours
    • Ascent: 1440 m
    • Descent: 15 m
    • Max. altitude: 2840 m
    • Accomodation: Teahouse
    • Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 3

    TREK TO PANGGOM

    The day starts with a gentle descent through mainly cultivated hillsides until we reach the wooden bridge where we cross the Paiya Khola river. After walking through the forest for around an hour we face a tough climb that brings us back up to Kari La, from where there are fantastic views of several 7,000m mountains. We descend through rhododendron trees and traverse on typical Nepali flat for most of the afternoon before we reach the village of Panggom.

    • Hiking time: 8 - 9 hours
    • Ascent: 105 m
    • Max. altitude: 2930 m
    • Accomodation: Teahouse
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Trip information

Difficulty

If you are physically strong and have already climbed Kilimanjaro or trekked to Everest base camp, then climbing Mera Peak is a realistic next challenge. It is designated by the Nepal Mountaineering Association as a trekking peak. Their criteria for this however, is only that you need to be able to use crampons and ice axe to reach the summit. This can give the impression that Mera Peak is not difficult. This is not true. At 6476m it is the highest trekking peak in Nepal, and this brings all the challenges of trekking at really high altitude. These include the possibility of extreme weather conditions, and of course, altitude sickness.


Unless you have already been to altitudes above 4000m without any problems then you should probably avoid Mera Peak. In total you will be at, or above, 5000m for 4 days, and unless you acclimatise well this could easily trigger altitude sickness. Besides the altitude, Mera Peak is also a really hard slog. There is no particular point that is particularly difficult, but the summit night climb up the glacier just goes on and on. Expect to be trekking up the glacier for 5-6 hours to reach the summit! But all that effort is worth it for the views which are out of this world.

Food & drink

You choose what you want to eat at the lodges, and settle your own bill in the morning. While you can eat heartily for very little money at any lodge, we do recommend that you budget £20 to £25 ($30 to $35) per day for meals and drinks. This will ensure that you not only have plenty of food, but that you enjoy it a lot more. Where once there was a choice of perhaps 5 different rice or lentil based meals at any one lodge, most now offer a wide menu of 40 or more choices from the basic (such as dhal bhat) to the sophisticated (yak steak with blue cheese sauce). Please note that we prefer some of the more expensive lodges, so the prices are higher than they might be at more spartan facilities.


One word of advice, place your meal order as soon as you can upon arriving at the lodge as it is strictly ‘first ordered, first served’, and the best lodges are quite busy at meal times.

Accommodation

Trekking in Nepal is more popular than ever. As a result, the standard of accommodation available on most of the trek routes has improved dramatically. Where there were once simple peasant huts, large hostels have been built featuring running water, indoor toilets (some en-suite) and electricity. However, while internet access, charging facilities and hot water are available, you will need to pay to use them - if you plan on using the internet and showering every day, then you should budget around $10 per day.

However, development is still ongoing, and as you get higher into the mountains the lodges become more basic. Furnishing is generally fairly spartan, and most rooms feature little more than a bench bed and a thin mattress, so your sleeping kit will probably see some early use. Showers are not always available and it tends to be just the communal areas that are heated. 


The exception to that rule is Namche. Namche features some really great lodges, including the Hil-Ten (this is not a region that makes much of copyright infringement) and if you are in need of refreshment there both Illy and Lavazza coffee are available.

Kandoo has a list of lodges that we prefer to work with, all of which are regularly inspected to ensure the best quality rooms available. Even at the worst, they are clean and well-kept. When the route is busy, we send a porter ahead to hire rooms for the night, as they cannot be reserved in advance.

Transport

The general standard of driving throughout Nepal is poor and badly regulated. Roads in Kathmandu are very congested, many drivers are not properly licensed and vehicles are poorly maintained. During the monsoon season (June to September) many roads outside the Kathmandu valley are prone to landslides and may become impassable. We insist on using a high standard of vehicle and driver for all of our transfers. In Nepal it is not a legal requirement to have seatbelts fitted in the back of vehicles, and while we try to use vehicles that do have rear seatbelts fitted, this cannot always be guaranteed. If you are unhappy about any aspect of the vehicle or the standard of driving, please speak to the driver or our local office.

Luggage

The internal flights operate a strict limit of 10kg for your main bag and 5kg for your day sack. This weight limit is particularly tight for the peak climbs because of the climbing kit. We therefore allow a limit of 15kg for your main equipment bag and 5kg for your day sack, and we will arrange for the extra 5kg to travel as excess baggage. There may be times when the airline is unable to carry the excess baggage on the same flight. If this happens, your climbing kit will be re-packed separately, sent on the next available flight and a porter will catch up with you on the trail. You will be given 2 litres of water on arrival in Lukla to fill your bottles for your first day’s trekking, so you do not need to carry water from Kathmandu. All items must be packed in your main equipment bag. They should not be attached to the outside, as we are not responsible if items fall off when the bags are being carried on the trek.


If you are renting equipment in Khare, please allow for the additional weight when you leave Kathmandu, so that your bag does not exceed 15kg for the porters to carry once the climbing kit is added later.

How do I get there?

There are several ways to get to Nepal from Europe and the USA all of which involve an international flight to Tribhuvan International Airport which is the main airport in Kathmandu. There are a lot of flights that fly to Kathmandu through the Middle East. Qatar, Gulf and Air Emirates offer daily flights from Europe and the US to Kathmandu, with a stopover at their central hubs. You must be careful though, as some of these layovers are very long indeed. Check the schedules carefully, and consider using Qatar. They seem to have the shortest layovers (at Doha) by a substantial margin. The other alternative is to fly via Delhi, with BA, Air India or Jet and then catch a shorter flight up to Kathmandu. Again be careful of long layovers and be warned - some of the reviews for Air India are less than glowing!

Budget & change

The Nepali Rupee is a closed currency so you will not be able to buy this before you arrive. It is advisable to travel with US Dollars, as these are widely accepted. It is very important that US bills be new (post 2006), crisp and untorn. If you want some local currency then we can take you to an ATM or bank. Alternatively all the hotels in Kathmandu will change money for you. We recommend that you take local currency on the actual trek with you, as the teahouses prefer local currency to dollars. You will also get a more favourable exchange rate in Kathmandu.


If you are relying on a credit or debit card for emergency funds, make sure you tell your card issuer that you will be using it abroad, or you may find that it won't work when you really need it.

Tips

We realize that tipping may not be a common practice in all countries but for Nepal it is a standard practice that all operators support. The decision on how much to tip should be determined by how well the team served you while you were on the trek. Tips are always discretionary and if you are not happy with the service you have received you do not have to pay tips. Tips can be made in US dollars or Nepali Rupees. It is very important that US bills be new (post 2006), crisp and untorn.


We are members of the Trekking Agencies Association of Nepal and the Nepal Mountaineering Association, and follow their guidelines when recommending tip levels for guides and porters. We would suggest you budget $100-$150 per trekker for your tip contribution.


We say goodbye to our porters in Lukla before we return to Kathmandu. Any tips that you wish to give to the porters will need to be carried on the trek with you.

Formalities & health

Passport

Please double check that your passport is valid for 6 months beyond the date of arrival in Nepal. We recommend that you take a photocopy of your passport and keep it separate from the original, and this will be useful if the original is lost while you are travelling. You must carry your passport on the trek with you, as it is required for internal flights.

Visa

Most visitors to Nepal (including nationals from the UK, Europe, USA and Australia) require a tourist visa to enter Nepal. To secure a visa you will need to present proof that you have a return ticket, and proof that you have sufficient money to support yourself during your stay in Nepal. Visa can be obtained at your local Nepalese Embassy or on arrival at Kathmandu Tribhubhan International Airport. We highly recommend securing a visa before departure as this will ensure you have no problems passing immigration, as well as speed up the process of clearing immigration. You will need at least one blank visa page in your passport. Certain nationalities not mentioned above must apply for a visa in advance, so check with your local Nepalese Embassy. Visas are valid for 6 months from the date of issue, so do not send off your application too early.

For most of our trips, you may be ok with a 15 day tourist visa which costs USD30 (around GBP25). However, if you are adding any extra days in Kathmandu you would then require a 30 day tourist visa which USD50 (around GBP40). Visas can be extended once you are in Nepal, but overstaying your visa is taken very seriously, and can result in your being detained or not allowed to leave without paying a fine.

Vaccinations

The standard vaccinations required are diphtheria, tetanus, typhoid and hepatitis A, but you should always consult your doctor or travel clinic for the most up to date advice.

Insurance

It is your responsibility to ensure that you are fully and adequately insured for the duration of your trip. Please ensure that all activities, excursions and destinations in your itinerary are included in your travel insurance policy, in addition to your regular cover for cancellation and medical expenses. For the Annapurna Sanctuary, this means that you must be covered for trekking to 4500m. If you are trekking to Everest Base Camp you will be trekking to 5500m. If you are climbing Mera Peak or Island Peak you will be reaching an altitude over 6000m.

Please take a copy of your insurance policy to the pre-trek briefing, as the guide will need to collect your insurance details. We also ask that you keep a copy of your policy summary (containing policy number and the emergency contact number for your insurer) in your day sack at all times, so that we can access this information should we need to contact the insurer on your behalf.

Health

Malaria

There is no risk of malaria in Kathmandu and or on the majority of Himalayan treks that we operate, due to the altitude. However, there is a risk of malaria in areas of Nepal below 1,500m, particularly in the Terai district, the lowland region of Nepal adjacent to the Indian border. This region includes Chitwan National Park, so if you are planning a safari extension to your trek, you need to plan anti-malarial medication for this part of your trip. In addition to taking medication, we would recommend you take every precaution to prevent mosquito bites by wearing long-sleeved trousers and shirts at dusk and dawn when the mosquitos are active, and by using a DEET based mosquito repellent.

Altitude Sickness

Altitude sickness, also called Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS), hypobaropathy and soroche, is an illness caused by exposure to low air pressure, especially low partial pressure of oxygen, which many trekkers experience at high altitudes. AMS is caused by exerting yourself at high altitudes, especially if you have not been properly acclimatised. It is most common at altitudes above 2400 metres. Your route into the Annapurna Sanctuary has been designed to aid your acclimatisation wherever possible, but the following will also help your body adjust:

Slow and steady. You need to keep your respiration rate low enough to maintain a normal conversation. If you are panting or breathing hard, you must slow down. There is no pressure on you to keep up with other members of your group.

Drink much more water than you think you need. Proper hydration helps acclimatisation dramatically. You need to drink at least three litres each day.

Diamox

There has been a lot of research on Diamox that shows is that it has been reasonably well proven to be helpful in avoiding AMS by speeding up the acclimatisation process. In the UK it is a prescription drug which must be prescribed by a doctor, but some doctors are reluctant to prescribe it. The concern is that by taking Diamox, people believe that they are immune from AMS and can ignore the symptoms. In reality, although Diamox can help prevent the symptoms, should symptoms still develop it means that you are not acclimatising and you have to take notice. Diamox is taken before you start trekking to prevent altitude sickness, not once you are on the trek and symptoms have developed.

Dehydration

You can easily become dehydrated at high altitudes. The lower air pressure forces you to breathe more quickly and deeply, and you lose a lot of water through your lungs. You will also be exerting yourself, and sweating, and may even suffer from diarrhoea. As a result, you will have to drink much more water than you normally would so you should drink at least 3 litres of fluids every day while trekking. Even when you do not feel thirsty you have to drink this amount as a minimum, preferably more. Stay on the look-out for signs of dehydration in yourself and your fellow trekkers. The most common symptoms include thirst, dry lips, nose or mouth, headache and feeling fatigued or lethargic.

Equipment & clothing

Equipment supplied by Kandoo Adventures

We recommend that wherever possible you use your own gear for your trek as this is the best way to ensure your comfort and enjoyment. We recognise though that the cost of some items is very high and this may not be possible. We do not have our own gear available for rental but there are many places offering gear for rental in Kathmandu. The quality of rental gear is very variable and it is your responsibility to check carefully the condition of any item you rent. We accept no responsibility for the quality of equipment hired. An indication of the likely rental costs is below.

  • Four Season Sleeping  Bag  - $2 per day
  • Down Jacket - $2 per day
  • Trekking Poles - $1 per day
  • Sleeping Mat - $2 per day (closed cell foam mat; inflatable mats cannot be hired)

For Mera Peak you will also need additional specialist equipment. This can be hired in Kathmandu but is also available to rent at a lodge close to base camp. Prices below are for Kathmandu rental. Prices in the lodges can be more than twice this cost. It is still cheaper though to rent from these lodges as you only need to pay for 3-4 days hire. You should be aware though that the range of sizes and the quality of rental gear available here is even more limited than in Kathmandu and you may not find something that is perfect for you. In addition, climbing boots may have only just been returned by a previous user and may still be wet.


  • High Altitude Climbing Boot - $3 per day
  • Crampons - $2 per day
  • Ice Axe - $2 per day
  • Climbing Accessories Pack - $12 per day (includes helmet, harness, carabiners, prussik loop, tape sling, ascender & descender)

Clothing to bring

HEADGEAR
  • Warm beanie style hat – knitted or fleece
  • Neck gaiter or scarf. It can get dusty in Nepal and the air very cold. A scarf or balaclava comes in useful for keeping dust out and can double as a warm layer for your neck / face!
  • Sun hat – preferably wide-brimmed for protection
  • Sunglasses – high UV protection
  • Headlamp (plus extra batteries)
  • Climbing helmet

UPPER BODY

  • Thermal or fleece base layer (x2)
  • Long sleeve shirt/tshirt – light or medium weight, moisture wicking (x3)
  • Short sleeved shirt/tshirt – lightweight, moisture wicking (x2)
  • Fleece or soft shell jacket (x2)
  • Insulated jacket – down or primaloft
  • Lightweight water/windproof hard shell outer jacket
  • Gloves – lightweight, fleece or quick drying fabric
  • Gloves – heavyweight, insulated, preferably water resistant
  • Over mittens – with safety straps

LEGS

  • Leggings – thermal or fleece base layer (x1)
  • Trekking trousers – light or medium weight (x2) – convertible trousers work well
  • Waterproof hard shell trousers – ski pants work fine (x1)
  • Gaiters

FEET

  • Climbing boot – insulated, stiff-soled (B3)
  • Trekking boots – mid weight with good ankle support
  • Training shoe or similar – to wear around the teahouses
  • Mid-weight trekking socks (x5 pairs)
  • Breathable, high-wicking liner socks (x3 pairs)
  • Thermal trekking socks for upper reaches of your trek (x2 pair)

Equipment to bring

TREKKING GEAR
  • Small Rucksack or Daypack (30-40 litres) to carry water and personal items
  • Waterproof duffle bag (approx 80-100 litres)
  • Sleeping bag (4 season or -20 Deg C) and compression sack
  • Trekking poles
  • Water bottle or hydration bag – must be able to carry 1.5-2L of water

CLIMBING GEAR

  • Crampons – to fit your climbing boots
  • Ice axe
  • Climbing harness
  • Ascending (jumar) and descending (belay) devices
  • Carabiners – 2 x locking, 2 x non-locking
  • Prussik loop and tape sling

OTHER ACCESSORIES

  • Sunscreen and lip balm - high SPF
  • Toiletries, including toilet paper, wet wipes and hand sanitiser
  • Camera and spare batteries
  • Plug adapter, for charging devices in teahouses and hotels
  • Personal medication and first aid kit
  • Personal snacks and energy bars – dried fruit and nuts are a good option
  • Isotonic drink powder / energy drink powder to mix in with your water
  • Microfibre towel for wiping hands and face each day
  • Pee bottle, useful for late night toilet needs

Dates & prices

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04/04/2022 22/04/2022 $3,575 £2,749
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25/04/2022 13/05/2022 $3,575 £2,749
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09/05/2022 27/05/2022 $3,575 £2,749
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19/09/2022 07/10/2022 $3,575 £2,749
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10/10/2022 28/10/2022 $3,575 £2,749
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07/11/2022 25/11/2022 $3,575 £2,749
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03/04/2023 21/04/2023 $3,635 £2,799
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24/04/2023 12/05/2023 $3,635 £2,799
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Want to add flights or create a private trip? Don't hesitate to contact us!

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Price includes

  • Your hotel stay for one night before and two nights after the trek
  • All airport transfers
  • Return flight between Kathmandu and Lukla
  • National Park entry, TIMS fees & climbing permit
  • A fully supported trek with a qualified mountain guide
  • All drinking water on the trek
  • Teahouse accommodation on a room only basis
  • High quality sleeping tents
  • All meals when camping on the climb
  • Access to emergency oxygen and first aid kit

Price does not include

  • International airfares and visas
  • Tips for your guides and porters
  • Personal items
  • Travel insurance (you must be insured, and specifically for treks up to 6500m, using fixed ropes)
  • Your personal trekking and climbing gear
  • Your personal medicines or prescriptions
  • Meals and drinks on the trek (except when camping)
  • Meals and drinks in Kathmandu (breakfast is included)

Options

  • Additional hotel nights before or after your climb