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Climb Mera Peak Summit the highest trekking peak in Nepal KANDOO Climbing Mera Peak in Nepal

Highlights of climbing Mera Peak


Summit Merea Peak, at 6476m, the highest trekking peak in Nepal
Spectacular views of all the gerat Himalayan giants including Everest, Lhotse and Ama Dablam
Approach by the unspoilt Arun valley avoiding Zatwa La on the outward journey
All Mera Peak expeditions led by an Everest summiteer guide
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About climbing Mera Peak

View from Mera Peak

The Mera Peak expedition combines summiting the highest trekking peak in Nepal with a beautiful approach up the relatively quiet Arun Valley. The highlight though are the views from high camp and from the summit itself which are genuinely breath-taking: Everest, Lhotse, Makalu and Ama Dablam can all be seen clearly. And as you are climbing through the night on this ascent you can stop and watch the sunrise capture the heads of these mountains as dawn breaks.

Like all our treks in the Everest region, you start your Mera Peak adventure with the exhilarating Kathmandu to Lukla flight with great views all the way and the hair-raising landing at Lukla’s short runway. Try to get a seat on the left handside of the plane out-bound for best views of the mountain.

Terraced farmsHaving assembled your crew at Lukla your route takes you south around the mountain to Paiya and Pangom. We do not take climbers directly over Zatrwa La even though this is a shorter route as crossing the pass at 4250m nearly always causes clients to have problems with altitude sickness.

The early days of this route are very quiet and you are travelling through an area that is terraced and heavily farmed. From Sibuje you branch north heading into pristine bamboo and rhododendron jungle before reaching your first tented camp.

The trek then moves on up the Arun valley to Khote with Mera Peak  towering over the route on your right all the way. At Khote you stop for an acclimatisation trek which takes you up a hill immediately opposite Mera Peak where you can get a great view of the challenge ahead of you.

View of Mera Peak from Khote

From Khote the trail heads north to Khare for another day acclimatising during which you will have time to practise glacier traverse techniques with your guides.

Just above Khare,  you will put on your crampons, harnesses and ice axes as you make your way over the glacier to Mera La Camp.  From here you climb higher to the spectacular Mera High camp, perched precariously on a rocky outcrop just beside the glacier, arriving in time to see the spectacular sunset over the endless mountain range.

The summit day is a tough grind up the glacier, followed by a short sharp scramble up an ice-wall using crampons and ice axe to the summit of Mera Peak itself. Your guide will put in a fixed rope and jumar for your safety.

After summiting you descend back to Khare where you will stay overnight before tracking back down the Arun valley now with the steep face of Mera Peak on your left.  Even though you will be descending to lower altitude, as always in Nepal this doesn't mean that you will just go downhill, there will be plenty of uphill too, even on your descent!  Finally you cross the Zatwa La pass to begin your final descent back down to Lukla.

When is the best time of year to climb Mera Peak?

In order to climb Mera safely you need stable weather and for it to be dry. Even if it is warm, strong winds can make climbing very dangerous and any rainfall at this altitude falls as fresh snow and breaking tracks in this doubles the difficulty of the climb. 

To give your self the best chance of avoiding these problems, we recommend climbing between September and November or between February and May. Both these periods generally bring long periods of stable weather and although the temperatures at the top are still incredibly cold it is bearable

How many days do I need to climb Mera Peak?

It is possible to attempt to this climb in less days than our itinerary suggests and if you are very fit, have experience of trekking at altitude before and want to do a private trip we are happy to arrange this. Generally though shorter trips save days in two ways.

First, from Lukla they head straight over Zatwa La: this saves two days but immediately takes you up to 4500m and there is a very high incident of climbers suffering severe altitude sickness. This is a very bad way to start your preparation for the climb. 

The second way to save time is to cut out acclimatisation days. Again while this saves days it also significantly reduces the chances of summiting successfully.

How fit do I need to be for this climb?

The approach to Mera is not particularly demanding as we avoid going over Zatwa La at the start of the trek and take the longer route around the Zatwa Massif. Once you reach Khare though things do get demanding.

Khare is above 5000m and you are going to have at least 4 full days above this altitude where the effects of the thin air are really obvious. The summit push from the Advanced Base camp is not particularly steep but it is a long drag and it will require a lot of stamina. 

For these reasons we would not recommend you take on Mera as your first trekking experience until you have a better idea of how your body will acclimatise and how fit you are in these extreme conditions. If you have already done a high altitude trek and coped well then Mera is the perfect Adventure One Step Beyond!

What additional kit will I need?

If you are planning to do this climb you will need all the standard kit we recommend for trekking in Nepal that you can find here and a some specialist climbing kit. This includes a helmet, high altitude mountaineering boots, crampons, a harness and ice axe as well as a number of  specialist pieces of climbing equipment. All of this kit can be hired in Kathmandu or at Khare.

What insurance will I need?

Although Mera is classified as a trekking peak in Nepal, the fact that you will be using crampons and on a rope means that for most insurance policies it is definitely categorised as mountaineering. Add in the fact that it is over 6500m and you need to be very careful about checking your insurance policy. 

Also bear in mind that unlike the treks up the main Khumbu valley, the Mera region is relatively remote and if you have a problem you will need a helicopter evacuation. Insurers customers have used and recommend include Dog Tag and the British Mountaineering Council. Both of these have policies that cover all the necessary risks.

More about Mera Peak

Mera Peak sits in the Mahalangur section of the Himalaya to the East of the main Everest massif. At 6,476 metres it is classified as a trekking peak but the final part of the summit climb requires some climbing with a fixed rope. Mera Peak actually has three summits: Mera North, 6,476 metres; Mera Central, 6,461 metres; and Mera South, 6,065 metres (19,898 ft). We take all our clients to Mera North.

The view from the summit of Mera Peak is one of the finest in the Himalaya with five 8,000m peaks visible: Mount Everest, Lhotse, Cho Oyu, Makalu, and Kangchenjunga, as well as other Himalayan peaks linked below.

For experienced climbers Mera is a technically straightforward ascent, the main hurdle being proper acclimatization to the high altitude. These reasons make Mera Peak a very popular destination for experienced trekkers looking for their next challenge'

Detailed Itinerary for the Mera Peak climb

Day 1Arrival

Our driver will meet you at the airport in Kathmandu, and take you to your hotel. Once you're all checked in, you'll meet your guide for a briefing and a gear check.

Day 2Flight from Kathmandu to Lukla, trek to Paiya

As with most of our Khumbu treks, the road to Mera Peak starts at Lukla. After arriving at Lukla's tiny airstrip (it looks even smaller when you realise that's where you have to land), we'll meet the rest of our Kandoo team and hit the trail south.

Our first stop is downhill at Surke to cross the river, then a steep rise to Chutok La. The rest of the way to Paiya is flat but undulating terrain, and a good end to our first day of trekking.

  • Elevation: 1300 metres to 2800 metres to 2730 metres
Day 3From Paiya to Panggom La

Today we'll cross the Piya Khola river, after a steep descent to a sturdy wooden bridge. On the other side it is another steep climb up the valley side to reach Kari La. Once again, the last leg of the trek is over fairly flat terrain until we reach the village of Panggom la.

  • Elevation: From 2730 metres to 2864 metres
Day 4From Panggom La to Ningbo

Day four takes a curving path along the foot of the Zatrwa Massif, with plenty of short, steep climbs and descents in fairly rugged terrain. We'll be camping for the night at Ningbo.

  • Elevation: From 2846 metres to 3672 metres
Day 5From Ningbo to Bamboo Camp

We'll continue around the massif, stopping at Sibuje for lunch. Next we will leave the main path to the north, through rhododendron forest. This is where we really get off the beaten path.

We'll make camp for the night at a small, little-used site called Bamboo Camp.

  • Elevation: From 3672 metres to 3145 metres
Day 6From Bamboo Camp to Khote

We'll continue through the jungle today, over more steep up-and-down terrain. We'll pass through a village called Tashing Ongma, then downhill to Mosom Kharka and the Inku Khola river. We'll follow the river to a village called Khote and the lodge where we'll spend the night.

This leg of the trek has many excellent views of Mera at the head of the river valley.

  • Elevation: From 3480 metres to 4140 metres
Day 7From Khote to Tagnak

Today we'll leave the forest, reaching a more open valley well before lunch. We'll be in Tagnak by mid afternoon.

As we near it, we can see the route we'll be taking up Mera glacier. We can also see the damage the recent collapse of Sabai Tsho (a glacial lake) caused.

  • Elevation: From 3480 metres to 4252 metres
Day 8Acclimatisation Day at Tagnak

Today we'll tackle the slopes behind Tagnak, getting as high as possible in order to get more used to exerting ourselves in low air pressure. The view of Mera from this height is not to be missed either!

After half an hour or so at the high altitude, we'll descend to Tagnak for lunch.

There is also an optional afternoon trek up the north slopes to see what remains of Sabai Tsho after it broke through its bounds and caused so much flooding downstream.

  • Elevation: 4252 metres
  • Highest point: 5000 metres (the Tibetan Prayer Stones)
Day 9From Tagnak to Khare

The hike to Khare is a gentle rise, and we can take our time. We'll cross the river just above Tagnak then ascend the Dig glacier. We'll be able to see the Hinku Nup glacier hanging above us as well.

The trail gets steep again just before Khare, but we can rest for a bit in the village before taking another acclimatisation excursion along the ridge behind it. From here, youwe'll be able to see the glacier we'll climb tomorrow.

  • Elevation: From 4140 metres to 4940 metres
Day 10From Khare to Mera La

We'll work our way back up to the Hinku Nup glacier then turn north avoiding the crevasses. The ascent up the glacier itself requires crampons, even though the glacier is relatively flat and easy to traverse.

Mera La is a rounded snow col which leads up to the Mera Glacier. We'll camp for the night just on the other side of Mera La pass.

  • Elevation: From 4940 metres to 5554 metres
Day 11Contingency Day

Day eleven is a contingency day, which means it is a chance to make up any time lost to bad weather or slow going without ruining the rest of the schedule.

If we are on form so far we can skip ahead, of course.

  • Elevation: 5554 metres
Day 12From Mera La to Mera High Camp

This is the first part of the real summit push, and we'll need our crampons again. We'll return to Mera La pass then head up the glacier itself to High Camp, set on a rocky outcrop 5800 metres above sea level.

The view from High Camp is stunning, including Kangchenjunga in the east, the ridge of Chamlang, Barents Ice Spire, Makalu and the peaks of Ama Dablam. Just turn slightly, and you can see Nuptse, Lhotse and Everest.

  • Elevation: From 5554 metres to 5800 metres
Day 13Ascent of Mera Peak, descent to Khare

We'll be up by 2am on day thirteen. After a hot drink and a large breakfast, we'll make the attempt on Mera Peak's summit.

The path travels along the main glacier and crosses over to the south side to the snowy hump-back ridge. The 30 degree slope is challenging, but not really a technical climb. After getting behind the ridge, we'll head diagonally to the west. Our guide will attach a fixed rope for the final steep ascent, and we will use our ice axes and jumars to make the last 30 metres (at a 55 degree angle).

The view from the summit is everything you could hope, including mighty Everest in the distance.

After we arrive in Khare, a celebration will be in order!

  • Elevation: From 5800 metres to 5554 metres
  • Highest point: 6476 metres (Mera Peak)
Day 14From Khare to Khote

We'll follow the Arun Valley again, retracing our steps back to Khote.

  • Elevation: From 4940 metres to 3480 metres
Day 15From Khote to Chetera La

Today is uphill again, following a new route to Chetera La. This new path is both a faster way to the village and offers superior views of Mera.

  • Elevation: From 3480 metres to 4150 metres
Day 16Descent from Chetera La to Lukla, via the Zatrwa La Pass

Our last day of proper trekking takes us back to Lukla. We'll climb a series of ridges before reaching the Zatrwa La Pass. The terrain there is quite craggy, and we can see both Hinku Valley and the south face of Mera clearly.

We'll scale down Zatr Og, a rocky outcrop, and continue downhill back to the Dudh Koshi valley. We'll enter forested terrain again, then the farmland at the outskirts of Lukla.

  •  Elevation: From 4150 metres to 2850 metres
  • Highest point: 4580 metres (Zatrwa La Pass)
Day 17Flight from Lukla to Kathmandu

We'll take an early flight back into Kathmandu and your hotel today. Take some time to explore Kathmandu, if you haven't done so already.

Day 18Departure

Today we'll drive you back to the airport for your return flight home. 

Congratulations! You conquered Mera Peak!

Route profile for the Mera Peak

Climb Mera Peak - Nepal's Highest Trekking Peak Route Profile

Mera Peak climb Open Group Availability

Last Updated November 18 2017
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Route: Mera Peak
Arrival: March 7 2018
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Price: £2499 $3249 €0
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Arrival: April 21 2018
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Price: £2499 $3249 €0
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Arrival: May 14 2018
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Route: Mera Peak
Arrival: September 24 2018
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Route: Mera Peak
Arrival: October 20 2018
Days: 18
Price: £2499 $3249 €0
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FAQs about climbing Mera Peak

Q1HOW DIFFICULT IS MERA PEAK?

Although high, Mera Peak is fairly straightforward and only a basic level of mountaineering skill is required. Although basic climbing with crampons and ice axe are required, there is plenty of time at the base of the mountain to learn these skills. However, because of the altitude, the trek is still very difficult and requires a high level of fitness.

Q2WHAT IS THE DISTANCE OF THE MERA PEAK TREK?

The total trekking distance is 78 miles or 125 kilometres.

Q3WHAT IS THE SCENERY LIKE ON THE MERA PEAK TREK?

The Mera Peak tour takes in everything. You begin by trekking through lush valleys before heading higher up into farmland and rhododendron forests. From there you’ll come across beautiful lakes and rivers before finding yourself at the base of the highest trekking peak on earth. The summit is unforgettable as you see the world below you in one magnificent vista that includes Everest and Lhotse!

Q4SHOULD I BOOK IN ADVANCE?

Absolutely. This is a specialist tour and we therefore suggest booking at least three months in advance.

Q5WHEN IS THE BEST TIME TO CLIMB MERA PEAK?

There are two main periods that are considered the best time to climb Mera Peak. Spring time from Mid-March to late May is always popular, as is after the monsoon period from October to early December.

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