Kanchenjunga North Base Camp Trek Overview
Kanchenjunga North Base Camp Trek is one of the most beautiful walking adventures in Nepal though it is a rarely explored mountain trail that takes you to the base of the third highest mountain in the world and the second-highest in Nepal, Mount Kanchenjunga (8586 m). It is an off-the-beaten-track teahouse trek in eastern Nepal.
A walk to the north base camp of Mt Kanchenjunga at 5143 meters involves easy to steep rises over the man-made and natural stone steps, mountain trails, landslides, and glacial terrains. We cross various terrains like farmland, uneven valley settings, streams, waterfalls, tea gardens, and the cardamom jungles to reach our destination. We pass through the quaint Kirat settlements of Sermanthang and the beautiful Tibetan village of Ghunsa, experiencing the typical mountain living.
The journey begins from the largest black/big cardamom producer in Nepal at Taplejung approaching the northern base of the great Kanchenjunga, where you will enjoy wonderful views of the Kanchenjunga itself along with the Tent Peak, Nepal Peak, Wedge Peak, Mera Peak, and the Twins.
The north base camp trek may be longer and more strenuous compared to the other treks in Nepal and may require a lot of strength but the outcome of this journey will be definitely worth the hard work.
During the walk, you will explore and experience cultural and natural beauties from the lower middle hills and valleys to the high alpine wilderness. Most of the routes go through a variety of beautiful scenery, from lush tropical jungle to rhododendron, chestnut, and oak woods, and up to the glaciated base camp of the world's third-highest peak. As you climb higher in height, you'll have the opportunity to learn about and experience some remote but fascinating villages and cultures of Kirat and the famous Sherpa people.
Moreover, the Kanchenjunga North Base Camp Trek is undoubtedly a great trip to make giving you a unique trekking adventure experience that you find nowhere else.
Highlights of Kanchenjunga North Base Camp Trek
- Experience the journey through the rarely visited places to the lap of the Third highest peak in the world
- Unrivaled views of the Kanchenjunga massif, Makalu range, and nearby peaks such as Jannu, Mera, Wedge (Chang Himal), the Twins, etc.
- High mountain cultures unspoiled by modernity
- Walk by alpine meadows and high-altitude wetlands
- Follow the glacial torrents of the Tamur and Ghunsa Rivers
- Trek through the Kirat and Sherpa people’s secluded communities
- Exploration of the beautiful mountain wilderness in peace
- Diversity of flora and fauna and wildlife
How difficult is Kanchenjunga North Base Camp Trek?
Due to its remote location and height, Kanchenjunga North Base Camp Trek is a demanding one. The journey is long and quite strenuous, requiring a good level of fitness needed for two weeks of sustained walking with a light backpack. It entails walking for an average of 6-7 hours each day, covering a distance of 9-11 kilometers per day, with a steady increase in altitude. Pang Pema, with a height of 5200 meters, is the highest point on this base camp trek.
The two biggest challenges trekkers face on their way to Kanchenjunga North Base Camp are acute mountain sickness and bad weather. Proper hydration and acclimatization are critical for this, as are several tips and methods.
But, don't worry, your guide is highly equipped to manage any extreme emergencies like these. If a serious scenario happens, a helicopter rescue service is always on standby to provide emergency evacuation.
Therefore, Kanchenjunga North Base Camp Trek can be completed without any harsh hurdles, if provided with a proper itinerary and adequate acclimatization days. Also, the physical and mental fitness of the trekker plays the biggest role in conquering it. Technical training is not mandatory but, regular exercises might help you gain confidence while trekking. So, we suggest you engage in sports such as running, cycling, swimming, and so on, months prior to the trek.
Best Time for Kanchenjunga North Base Camp Trek
Weather and climates can impact the journeys, especially in the mountain regions. So, information regarding this subject should be known beforehand to complete the journey successfully. As Kanchenjunga North Base Camp Trek is considered a challenging journey, we should watch out for the best time to conquer it without weather and climate hassles.
The Kanchenjunga North Base Camp Trek is accessible in spring and autumn, and so does many treks in Nepal. April, May, and early June and October, November, and early December are the spring and autumn in Nepal. Expect typically consistent weather, clear skies, pleasant days, and mild nights throughout these trekking seasons. Spring is more popular since it is warmer than autumn. There's also the benefit of seeing blooming spring flowers and rhododendrons. But, autumn beauty is no less than spring. Post monsoon makes the views of the mountain and landscapes much clearer with no clouds.
Even though these are peak seasons, trekkers need not be concerned about crowds because the region receives fewer visitors than the central region. There will be no problems finding a room in teahouses, and the trails will be less crowded.
Trekkers should avoid trekking during the monsoon season since the paths get slick and the roads become impassable owing to excessive rainfall. And, trekking is often impossible in the winter since it snows a lot, making trails inaccessible and the weather rather bad.
Permits & Entrance for Kanchenjunga North Base Camp
- Kanchenjunga Conservation Area Entry Permit (KCAP)
- Restricted Area Permit (RAP)
To trek to the north base camp of Mount Kanchenjunga. Unlike other treks, this trekking does not need TIMS. Trekkers can sit laid back regarding the permits as the permits will be obtained by Himalayan Trekkers on your behalf. You just need to provide the required documentation for permit obtaining.