Annapurna Base camp trek is the most popular trek after the Everest Base camp trek. Many travelers every year trek in these routes to reach the base camp that lay below the magnificent Annapurna Massif. These trails are graded to be quite difficult and thrilling. Eagle eyes trek gives you some information on Annapurna Base Camp Trek Difficulties.
Annapurna is a huge massif in the Himalayas situated in the north-central part of Nepal. It is considered the tenth highest mountain in the world. One of its peaks is over 8000 m, 13 peaks over 7000 m and 16 over 6000 m.
Many people travel from around the world to make the climb in this massif but it can be quite expensive and tough. So people tend to choose an alternative to trek till Annapurna base camp. You get the mesmerizing view of Mount Annapurna from here.
Trekking to Base camp is a bit of a strenuous journey. You will be making many up and downhill climb with twists and turns on these routes.
But as you reach your destination the feeling of satisfaction will be overwhelming. The ups and downs you face act as a hurdle but the beautiful scenic views you get to see along the paths are worth it.
On your way to ABC, you will also visit the Machhapuchhre base camp that falls in your route. Visiting two base camps on a trek is very exciting.
The trek is challenging but with a proper mindset and body, any trekkers can trek in these routes. Dare to face the challenges of this trek its final outcome won’t disappoint you.
Attractions in Annapurna base camp trek
You know the trek is gonna be quite difficult. Thus the beauty of nature, traditional villages, and many other attractions help divert your mind throughout the paths. Some of them are written below:
- Panoramic view of the Annapurna
- Sunrise view from poon hill
- View the tradition and culture of Gurung
- Routes filled with unique vegetation of flora and fauna
- Hot spring Jhinu
Grading Annapurna Base camp trek difficulties
Annapurna base camp trek is neither too difficult nor too easy. It is a moderate level trek. You begin your trek from Tikhedhunga and reach Annapurna base camp. From there you head down to Ghandruk and drive back.
The trek journey starts from an elevation of 1430 m and reaches up to 4130 m which is the highest point in this trek. If you can walk about 6 to 7 hours per day then this trek will be easier.
What makes the Annapurna base camp trek difficult?
Trekking is never an easy task but through proper preparation, you can do it with ease. These are one of the most visited trails of Nepal in the trekking world. It is popular for both solo and group treks.
The trails will take you through many adventures viewing the magnificent mountains. But you might face some difficulties on the way which are given below:
Altitude and Altitude sickness
Traveling to high altitudes is never easy with it many challenges come along. You should be prepared for them.
The highest point of this trek is the Annapurna base camp which lies at an altitude of 4130 m. Altitude sickness can be a major Annapurna Base camp trek difficulties you might face. Usually, most people suffer altitude sickness above the elevation of 3500m.
Also, the weather changes are a common thing in the mountains as in higher altitudes they can never stay the same. You will be climbing through steep hills for most of the paths.
Altitude sickness can also be referred to as mountain sickness. As you climb higher up in the mountains the air gets thinner making it hard to hold the breath.
You should not be careless when it comes to altitude sickness. If it is not treated at the right time it can cost you, your life.
Below are some symptoms of altitude sickness:
- Poor sleep
- Short of breath
- Fast heartbeats
- Blurry vision
- Nails and lips turning blue slowly
- Blood in saliva
- Difficulty walking in straight paths
These are some symptoms that occur while getting altitude sickness. If you feel anything like this immediately inform your team leader or anyone in your group. They will take immediate and appropriate action to help you out.
You must listen to the instructions that your team leader tells you and follow them properly. The instruction can help it from getting worse. You might either descend to a lower elevation or stay where you are till you get better.
If you see anyone in your group having these troubles inform your leader right away.
However, you can avert altitude sickness with some preventive measures that are written below:
- No smoking
- No alcohol consumption
- Drink plenty of water and keep your body hydrated
- Clean hygiene
- Physical exercises before your trek
- Walk slowly
- If you get the symptoms mentioned above then drop to a lower elevation
Many people suggest putting garlic in your mouth helps to cut the sickness. So you can carry them along but don’t rely solely on that take medical help too.
We hope these tips are going to be useful in your journey.
Distance and Duration
The full walk distance you will be covering in this trek is 115 km. The trek is more than a week long.
The shortest trek you can take in these routes is about 10 to 11 days. You will be covering a distance of about 10 to 20 km per day. And will be walking for about 6 to 7 hours each day.
If you are not habitual walking, then it can take about 8 to 9 hours for you.
This trek is short hikes in the mountains so don’t worry about the numbers. The routes are usually populated with trekkers making it more adventurous.
Experienced trekkers have more advantages on these routes as they will reach sooner in their stops. But the trails can be easy or difficult varying the season you are traveling in.
ABC trek is famously known in Nepal for its tea house treks. You will be staying in traditional tea houses.
The facilities they provide are very basic, they are not as fancy as hotels in the capital. There are fewer to no facilities for hot baths in high elevation.
Most lodges have common bathrooms and toilets. So there are very low chances for rooms with attached bathrooms.
And extra charge might be added for charging your phones, tablets, camera, iPods, etc. It is better to carry solar power banks and extra batteries.
You will have to make a lot of compromises but the warm welcome and hospitality will make up for all these.
Food and Drinks
Food delicacies are limited in the Himalayas. As you climb up in the mountains there are low chances of finding western food such as pizza, sandwiches, burgers, etc.
However, if you look at it in a positive way you get to taste the traditional Nepalese delicacy such as Dal Bhat, Dhido, sisnu, gundruk, etc.
There are also a few choices for drinks, you can mostly find tea and coffee only. But if you like you can carry extra snacks and drinks for the way. Such as protein bars, chocolates, coke, etc.
You should also carry refillable bottles and water purification tablets.
Annapurna Base camp trek difficulties – Trekkers experience
Trekking can be moderate or difficult depending on the number of times you have gone trekking.
If you have ever gone on hikes or treks before whether they are short or long then it will be quite easy for you.
But if you are a beginner and this is the first trek you need to prepare a lot. Before you start a trek a certain level of Physical fitness is needed.
If you are physically and mentally prepared the trek might be an easy task for you. You should make a habit of walking by traveling more on foot before this trek.
Difficulty faced in these trails
You are making a walk on steep trails of the Annapurna Region so the routes are not going to be leveled. You will be making many twists and turns and walk up and downhills all along the way.
Also, you will also walk in straight paths but the trials can be a bit hard sometimes. To make ups and down walks you should have a good amount of stamina.
If you walk very fast during these treks you might exhaust yourself faster than other trekkers. While trekking you should know your limits and eat carbohydrate foods.
Walking these trails requires more energy so carry foods with carbohydrates in it.
Lack of training
Like you have studied above, your body needs to be physically strong in this trek. As you will be making many steep climbs up and down which need a lot of stamina and energy.
So you need to train for about 6 weeks before the actual trek. You should walk for about 4 to 6 hours a day. You can also go on short hikes on hilltops during weekends.
If your body is not trained properly you might need many breaks and stops. Also, you might not be able to catch up with your group members. You will only slow down the group with you.
It might be hard to reach your desired destination in time. So to increase your stamina for this trek you can swim or cycle too.
Trekking destinations in Nepal are quite affordable but as you trek in high altitude the price can rise by double or triple.
The accommodation, foods, and water are expensive at high altitudes compared to low altitudes. The price of water bottles is 1$ in high altitudes.
You might feel that you are getting cheated but as you reach the remote areas you will feel the prices are fair. The roads are not suitable for vehicles so transporting goods is difficult there.
You won’t find ATM services higher up in the mountains so it is better to carry enough hand cash.
Mules, porters, and yak are the only means of transportation to carry the goods.
Annapurna Base Camp trek difficulties in different seasons
Every season shows different shades while traveling to Annapurna Base camp. Each season has its own difficulties and you might face them while going on this hike. These difficulties are discussed below:
The month from September to November falls under this season. Many trekkers love trekking in this season. It is considered the best time for trekking in the routes of Annapurna base camp.
It is the peak season for trekking. Due to which the trails are pretty much crowded and you might face difficulties in finding proper accommodation.
It is hard to find hotels of your choice at higher altitudes. So it is better to book them in advance.
Also, the price of food, drink, and rooms are higher than during the off-season
The months from December to February fall under this season. These are the coldest months of the year making the routes less crowded. The chances of snowfall are very high and the weather changes are unpredictable.
You will find paths covered with snow as you climb higher in the elevation. Walking in snow is quite difficult so be prepared.
Also, the sun isn’t as warm as other months and the nights are also very cold. So you should wear layers of warm clothes during the day and carry high-quality sleeping bags for the night.
During winter there are chances of avalanches occurring in the trails. You should carry some safety kit along with you.
The months from March to April fall under this season. These months are the most colorful time of the year. Trekking during this time is just perfect, the skies are clear, flowers are blooming all the way.
This season is also quite popular among trekkers making the routes noisy all along the trek. You will have difficulties finding tea-houses as they get filled soon. Due to the crowd, you will have to wait longer than usual for your food.
The weather can be a bit chilly in the higher elevation during the first weeks of spring. Also, you might face light rain showers at the end which might hide the beauty of nature.
The month from June to August falls under this season. It is preferred not to go trekking during these months.
But the paths are silent and you can walk these routes without any disturbances. However, the paths are thrilling due to heavy rainfalls.
You should trek along carefully as the routes are muddy and slippery. The walks are challenging and most of the views will be hidden due to the rain clouds.
Due to continuous rain, enjoyment can disappear soon. And the leeches and insects can be a turn off for many.
Luggage and other requirements
Packing backs for treks is challenging as you have to decide what to take along in this trip. You should carry things that are going to be important and are compulsory.
You should try to list out things as minimum as you can. A few things you can carry are listed out below. The list is made just to act as a guideline so you can freely personalize it.
The weather is chilly up in higher points all round the year so you should pack clothes that are suitable for both hot and cold time.
- Rain jackets and trousers
- Wind jackets
- Down jackets
- Pair of gloves
- Trekking boots
You will be traveling for more than a week so it is better to carry your everyday items according to it.
- Wet tissues
- Body lotion
- Minimum size towel
- Toilet rolls
- Lip balm
- Nail cutter
- Shampoo sachet
You can bring along other extra things necessary for this trek.
- Extra batteries
- Energy bar
- Sleeping bag
- Personal medical kit
You should always carry your permit and passport with you so that you don’t lose them. Also, there’s no ATM service higher up so it is better if you carry enough hand cash.
- Drink plenty of water and stay hydrated
- No smoking and drinking
- Don’t walk off the track
- Take rest in acclimatization day
- Don’t walk more than 6 to 7 hours a day
- Carry energy drinks and chocolates
On a moderate trek like this, Annapurna Base Camp Trek Difficulties makes the experience memorable and amazing views of mountains, vegetation, and landscape will make up for them. So few difficulties on the way are not to be worried about.
Even beginners can walk up and down these routes but you will be needing proper training before your journey begins. This trek will take you through Buddhist villages and their mesmerizing culture.
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