Thorong La

Last updated
Thorong La
Thorung La.jpg
Thorong La Pass. The route to Manang is to the left, and the route to Muktinath is to the right.
Elevation 5,416 m (17,769 ft)
Location Nepal
Range Himalayas
Coordinates 28°47′37″N83°56′14″E / 28.79361°N 83.93722°E / 28.79361; 83.93722 Coordinates: 28°47′37″N83°56′14″E / 28.79361°N 83.93722°E / 28.79361; 83.93722
Way to Thorong La Way to Thorong La.JPG
Way to Thorong La
Thorong La (Pass) Thorong La.jpg
Thorong La (Pass)
Sign at Thorong La (Pass) Thorung La-sign.jpg
Sign at Thorong La (Pass)

Thorong La or Thorung La is a mountain pass with an elevation of 5,416 metres (17,769 ft) above sea level in the Damodar Himal, north of the Annapurna Himal, in central Nepal. Khatung Kang and Yakawa Kang are the mountains forming Thorong La. The pass is located on a trail which connects the village of Manang in the Manang District to the east, with the temple of Muktinath and the nearby village of Ranipauwa, in the Mustang District to the west. Thorong La is the highest point on the Annapurna Circuit, a 300 km (190 mi) route around the Annapurna mountain range. In addition to trekkers, the pass is regularly used by local traders. It is the known to be the world's highest pass and possibly busiest pass.

Contents

Mountaineering

Most trekkers cross the pass from east to west (Manang to Muktinath), which is the easiest and safest direction. It is not possible to cross Thorong La from Manang to Muktinath in one day. Trekkers usually spend the first night in Yak Kharka and second night in Thorong Phedi — which is situated at 4,540 metres (14,895 ft), or at Thorong High Camp — which is situated at 4,880 metres (16,010 ft) before attempting to go over Thorong La Pass. Choosing this option decreases the elevation gain and loss for that day's hike, as well as decreasing the distance. The staff of the Himalayan Rescue Association post in Manang recommend that trekkers spend five nights between their arrival in Manang and the crossing to Muktinath. The additional time spent in Manang allows trekkers to acclimatize sufficiently to minimize the risk of acute mountain sickness (AMS). The Himalayan Rescue Association operates a medical clinic at Manang, and a small satellite medical clinic at Thorong Phedi. [1]

The route from west to east (Muktinath to Manang) is much more difficult, because it does not allow most trekkers sufficient time for acclimatization to the altitude. For trekkers choosing this direction of travel, the last place where it is possible to spend the night is located at Ranipauwa, where there is a lodge situated at 3,670 metres (12,041 ft). There is also a very basic lodge located at Muktinath Phedi, situated at 4,190 metres (13,747 ft), but this lodge is only open seasonally. Trekkers going from west to east must therefore ascend at least 1,230 metres (4,035 ft) and descend at least 540 metres (1,772 ft) in one day.

The safest months to cross the pass are March–April and October–November. Attempting to cross Thorong La Pass at other times of the year is dangerous due to the increased risk of avalanches, frostbite and the likelihood of a storm or a whiteout, which can cause trekkers to become disoriented and lost. Trekkers usually depart Thorung Pedi / Thorung High camp a few hours before sunrise, as strong winds typically begin a few hours after sunrise.

Local climate

view of trekking route to Thorong La Trekking trail to Thorong Pass.JPG
view of trekking route to Thorong La

The local climate on the western side of the pass is much drier than on the eastern side. There is practically no vegetation on the western side, except where irrigated, while in the Manang valley there is much more vegetation and cultivation is possible, while it is still fairly dry, as the valley is protected from the wet southern monsoon winds by the Annapurna mountain range.

Photos

Panorama of Thorong la Panorama of annapurna circuit.jpg
Panorama of Thorong la
view after thorong la After thorong la.jpg
view after thorong la
on the way to thorong la Thorong la way.jpg
on the way to thorong la

Related Research Articles

Annapurna Massif Himalayan mountain range in north-central Nepal

Annapurna is a massif in the Himalayas in north-central Nepal that includes one peak over 8,000 metres (26,000 ft), thirteen peaks over 7,000 metres (23,000 ft), and sixteen more over 6,000 metres (20,000 ft). The massif is 55 kilometres (34 mi) long, and is bounded by the Kali Gandaki Gorge on the west, the Marshyangdi River on the north and east, and by Pokhara Valley on the south. At the western end, the massif encloses a high basin called the Annapurna Sanctuary. The highest peak of the massif, Annapurna I Main, is the tenth highest mountain in the world at 8,091 metres (26,545 ft) above sea level. Maurice Herzog led a French expedition to its summit through the north face in 1950, making it the first of the eight-thousanders to be climbed and the only 8,000 meter-peak to be conquered on the first try.

Manaslu Mountain in Nepal

Manaslu is the eighth-highest mountain in the world at 8,163 metres (26,781 ft) above sea level. It is in the Mansiri Himal, part of the Nepalese Himalayas, in the west-central part of Nepal. The name Manaslu means "mountain of the spirit" and is derived from the Sanskrit word manasa, meaning "intellect" or "soul". Manaslu was first climbed on May 9, 1956 by Toshio Imanishi and Gyalzen Norbu, members of a Japanese expedition. It is said that "just as the British consider Everest their mountain, Manaslu has always been a Japanese mountain".

Kali Gandaki Gorge

The Kali Gandaki Gorge or Andha Galchi is the gorge of the Kali Gandaki in the Himalayas in Nepal. It is the deepest gorge in the world.

Lieutenant Colonel James Owen Merion Roberts MVO MBE MC (1916–1997) was one of the greatest Himalayan mountaineer-explorers of the twentieth century; a highly decorated British Army officer who achieved his greatest renown as "the father of trekking" in Nepal. His exploratory activities are comparable to those of Eric Shipton and Bill Tilman.

Manang District, Nepal District in Gandaki Pradesh, Nepal

Manang District (Nepali: मनाङ जिल्ला Listen , a part of Gandaki Pradesh, is one of the seventy-seven districts of Nepal. The district, with Chame as its district headquarters, covers an area of 2,246 km2 and had a population of 6,538.

Mustang District District in Gandaki Pradesh, Nepal

Mustang District is one of the seventy-seven districts of Nepal. It covers an area of 3,573 km2 (1,380 sq mi) and has a population (2011) of 13,452. The headquarters is Jomsom.

Dingboche Place in Province No. 1, Nepal

Dingboche (दिङबोचे) 27°53′N86°49′E is a Sherpa village in the Khumbu region of north eastern Nepal in the Chukhung Valley. Its population was estimated at approximately 200 in 2011. It is situated at an altitude of 4,410 metres (14,470 ft).

Khangchendzonga National Park national park in India

Khangchendzonga National Park also Kanchenjunga Biosphere Reserve is a National Park and a Biosphere reserve located in Sikkim, India. It was inscribed to the UNESCO World Heritage Sites list in July 2016, becoming the first "Mixed Heritage" site of India. It was recently included in the UNESCO Man and the Biosphere Programme. The park gets its name from the mountain Kangchenjunga which is 8,586 metres (28,169 ft) tall, the third-highest peak in the world. The total area of this park is 849.5 km2 (328.0 sq mi).

Tilicho Lake Lake in Nepal

Tilicho Lake is a lake located in the Manang district of Nepal, 55 kilometres (34 mi) as the crow flies from the city of Pokhara. It is situated at an altitude of 4,919 metres (16,138 ft) in the Annapurna range of the Himalayas. Another source lists the altitude of Lake Tilicho as being 4,949 metres (16,237 ft). Lake Tilicho of Nepal is situated at an altitude of 4,949m from sea level According to the Nepali Department of Hydrology & Meteorology (2003), no aquatic organism has been recorded in the lake.

Pheriche Village in Province No. 1, Nepal

Pheriche is a village in the Khumbu region of eastern Nepal. Situated at an altitude of about 4,371 m (14,340 ft), above the Tsola River, Pheriche is a popular stop for trekkers and climbers. There is a rudimentary hospital in Pheriche that is operated under the auspices of the Himalayan Rescue Association (HRA) which is headquartered in Kathmandu. The Pheriche hospital is open only during the two trekking/climbing seasons. Although the hospital was built with Japanese support in 1975, it is staffed by Nepalis and volunteer physicians who are mostly from the US, Europe, Canada and Australia. Pheriche was primarily a farming village raising potatoes and buckwheat, and keeping yaks. However, now in the summer many of its men are employed by trekkers as guides and bearers. There are also many lodges where trekkers and climbers on their way to the Mt. Everest Base Camp can stay. It is an important acclimatization stopover.

Jomsom Place in Gandaki Pradesh, Nepal

Jomsom, also known as Dzongsam is the centre of Gharapjhong rural municipality in Mustang district and a former independent village development committee situated at an altitude of about 2,700 metres (8,900 ft) in Gandaki Pradesh of western Nepal. The soaring peaks of Dhaulagiri and Nilgiri form a backdrop to the town straddling the Kali Gandaki River, which flows right through the centre of Jomsom. Along the banks of the Kali Gandaki, black fossilized stones called shaligram, considered as an iconic symbol and reminder of the god Vishnu in the Hindu culture, can be found. Such stones are believed to be found only in the Kali Gandaki, and are holy to the Hindus.

There are several routes by which to reach Kibo, or Uhuru Peak, the highest summit of Mount Kilimanjaro, namely: Marangu, Rongai, Lemosho, Shira, Umbwe and Machame.

Manang Place in Gandaki Zone, Nepal

Manang is a town in the Manang District of Nepal. It is located at 28°40'0N 84°1'0E with an altitude of 3,519 metres (11,545 ft). According to the preliminary result of the 2011 Nepal census it has a population of 6,527 people living in 1,495 individual households. Its population density is 3 persons/km2.

Ghorepani Village in Dhaulagiri Zone, Nepal

Ghorepani is a village in Myagdi District in the Dhaulagiri Zone of northern-central Nepal. It lies 17 kilometres from the district capital of Beni at an elevation of approximately 2874 m (9429 ft). The village lies within the Annapurna Conservation Area (ACA), requiring a national park permit to visit, and contains a number of "guest houses" that provide lodging and meals to mountain trekkers, many of whom spend the night before a pre-dawn trek to the top of nearby Poon Hill (3210m/10531 ft) to watch the sunrise.

Great Himalaya Trail A long-distance hiking trail

The Great Himalaya Trail is a route across the Himalayas from east to west. The original concept of the 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 kilometres (1,100 mi) of path. There is a proposed trail of more than 4,500 kilometres (2,800 mi) stretching the length of the Greater Himalaya range from Nanga Parbat in Pakistan to Namche Barwa in Tibet thus passing through, India, Nepal, Bhutan and Tibet. Although an actual continuous route is currently only a concept, if completed it would be the longest and highest alpine hiking track in the world.

Annapurna Circuit

The Annapurna Circuit is a trek within the mountain ranges of central Nepal. The total length of the route varies between 160–230 km (100-145 mi), depending on where motor transportation is used and where the trek is ended. This trek crosses two different river valleys and encircles the Annapurna Massif. The path reaches its highest point at Thorung La pass (5416m/17769 ft), touching the edge of the Tibetan plateau. Practically all trekkers hike the route anticlockwise, as this way the daily altitude gain is slower, and crossing the high Thorong La pass is easier and safer.

Auden's Col is a high altitude mountain pass connecting Rudugaira valley and Bhilangna valley. It is situated at 5,490 metres (18,010 ft) elevation and connects the ridge coming from Gangotri III peak on the north-west and the ridge coming from Jogin I on the east, and also binds a glacier coming from Jogin I on the north side of Rudugaira valley, and deadly Khatling glacier on the south side of Bhilangna valley.

2014 Nepal snowstorm disaster avalanches in Nepal

The 2014 Nepal snowstorm disaster occurred in central Nepal during the month of October and resulted in the deaths of at least 43 people of various nationalities, including at least 21 trekkers. Injuries and fatalities resulted from unusually severe snowstorms and avalanches on and around the mountains of Annapurna and Dhaulagiri. The incident was said to be Nepal's worst trekking disaster.

Ranipauwa

Ranipauwa is a town in central Nepal in the district of Mustang, formerly in the Kingdom of Mustang, about 12'140 ft. / 3'700 meters above sea level.

Kalindi Pass

Kalindi pass, or Kalindi khal is a high altitude mountain pass connecting Gangotri and Gastoli. It is situated at 5,950 metres (19,520 ft) elevation and is arguably the most famous trekking pass of the Garhwal Himalaya.

References