Pumori Expedition Overview
Pumori Expedition serves as a gateway to other high-altitude peaks including Everest. Mt. Pumori is one of the best mountains for mountaineering that is located in the Khumbu region, in the shape of a pyramid, on the Nepal-Tibet boundary at an elevation of 7161 meters. It dominates the skyline behind Kala Pathar (5555m) and is very easy to identify because of its unique shape.
“Pumori” is also called the “daughter of Everest” as “Pumo” means “Daughter/young girl” and “Ri” means “mountain” in the Sherpa language. Mr. Gerhard Lenser was the first person to reach the summit via the southeast face in 1962 as a part of a German/Swiss team. Pumori adventure offers well-traveled Himalayan paths, pure scenery, stunning mountain ranges, and a wide flora and fauna as you pass through blossoming rhododendron, pine, birch, and magnolia forests. The top of mount Pumori also offers a bird's eye perspective of Mt. Everest, Mt. Lhotse, and other notable Himalayan summits and a view of the Tibetan Plateau.
There are two routes to reach the top of the 7616 meters Mount Pumori. Both the routes share the same trail till Pumori Base Camp which starts with an exciting flight to Lukla from Kathmandu and goes through Phakding, Namche, Dingboche, Lobuche, finally reaching Gorakshep.
Route 1: The South-East Ridge/Standard Route/Normal Route
This is the classic route to Mount Pumori and almost every climber takes this route to make the summit. The trail goes through the mountain from the South-East Ridge, starting at Pumori Base Camp at 5300 meters above Gorakshep, and staying at three camps as mentioned below.
Camp 1 (5700 m): The route runs via glaciers from the base camp to Camp I.
Camp 2 (6200 m): A 40-60 degree climb on a snow wall from Camp I to Camp II. This 4 hours climb is the most technical part of this Pumori Peak Expedition journey.
Camp 3 (6480 m): A 30-60 degree climb through ice walls and crevasses from Camp II to Camp III. The campsite offers a spectacular view of the Tibetan Plateau.
From Camp 3, the path climbs up to the Pumori cliff going through crevasses, before making the final climb to the top.
Route 2: The South-west Ridge
Few climbers attempted this route because it is the most demanding out of the two routes to Mount Pumori. This path features a lot of technical obstacles such as rock scrambling, snow, and ice, as well as steep terrain and high exposure levels. While it is more technical than the classic path, it is thought to be safer from avalanche threats, which the standard route on Pumori is widely known for.
From Gorakshep, this path climbs through the crevasse to the right of Kala Pathar and west of the regular route and continues straight over the hill at a nearly 75-degree angle. Then the path follows the ridge directly to the summit of Pumori Peak. The route also includes stays at 3 camps at 6000 m (Camp 1), 6500 m (Camp 2), & 6750 m (Camp 3) above sea level.
We will follow the standard route on the South East Ridge, a grade 3, snow and ice climb that requires a good understanding of alpine climbing techniques and familiarity with the effects of high altitude. Three camps are set up above the base camp at 5300m. Climb through the glaciers for approx. 4 hours and reach Camp 1 at 5700m.
From Camp 1, we climb the face with a 40-60 degrees slope and pass through a snow wall to reach camp 2 at 6200m. From camp 2, climb through ice walls and crevasses to reach Camp 3 at 6480m. Passing through crevasses, climb up to Pumori cliff and then to the summit. From the Pumori summit, the views of Mt. Everest, Lhotse, Ama Dablam, Lingtren, Baruntse, Island Peak, and other peaks can all be seen. After that, we return to Base Camp and trek back to Lukla.
Highlights of the Mount Pumori Expedition
- Summiting one of the most beautiful mountains in the Everest region, Pumori at 7,161 meters
- Includes rock and ice climbing
- Enjoy the beautiful view of 8 thousand such as Everest, Lhotse, Cho Oyu, Makalu, Nuptse, along with other white crowns from the Pumori summit
- Pass by the Sherpa villages of Namche, Tengboche, Khumjung, Lobuche, etc.
- Get insight into the unique Sherpa culture, lifestyle, and hospitality
Difficulty Level of Pumori Expedition
The difficulties to climb any summit depends on many factors such as weather Condition and Temperature, the route you choose for climbing, the Physical Fitness of the climber, mountaineering Skills for Climbing, High Altitude Sickness, distance to cover, clothing and Equipment, etc.
Considering these common factors and technical difficulty, Mt. Pumori is one of the most difficult peaks above 7000 meters. Pumori Expedition is also difficult because of the technical sections between Camp 1 and Camp 2, as well as the harsh weather at such a high altitude.
Low air pressure and oxygen levels at high altitudes also pose a concern regarding AMS (Acute Mountain Sickness). So, to prevent it, it is necessary to acclimate at frequent intervals, keep oneself hydrated, and have a laid-back mentality. Climbers can carry Diamox, a tablet for AMS prevention.
Primarily, climbers must be in excellent physical condition. Prior peak climbing experience is required as Pumori Expedition is a grade 3 level of peak climbing from the southeast ridge/classic route.
Best time to do Pumori Expedition
Himalayas’ climates are unpredictable and harsh at times. While visiting the high-altitude’s harsh and untamed nature, the best value of time and season must be taken into consideration. In addition to that, expeditions are high-risk adventures. So, that must be implemented within a specific time range. In Nepal, there are primarily two seasons that are known for running expeditions. They are spring and autumn.
Pumori Expedition in Spring Season
In Nepal, the optimum time to go on an expedition is in the spring between April-May. With the lush view of the enormous mountain scenery, the climate will be most vivid at this time. The wind will not be as strong, and the trail will be easier to navigate than in other seasons. Wildflowers grow profusely, plants and trees start turning green, and every hill turns pink and scarlet with Rhododendron blossoms. Mountaineers prefer the spring season because it provides a great view of the region, easier access, and a great success rate.
Pumori Expedition in Autumn Season
The months of October to November of the autumn season are another great season for summiting the peaks. The months of October to November of the autumn season are another great season for summiting the peaks. This is the second busiest time of the year. After the wet monsoon season, the temperatures steadily drop, the sky opens up vibrantly, and the hills start turning yellow and brown. Ropes, ladders, and camps are simple to set up and connect and the success rate also rises in the autumn season. The trekking trails wind their way through lush green hills, with a clear blue sky, less heat haze, and breathtaking vistas of the world’s enormous peaks as a backdrop.