Tilicho Lake Trek, an experience of a lifetime

Located at an altitude of 4,920 meters, it is the highest lake of Nepal

  •  01 Jul 2018  |  nepaltraveller.com

It was an amazing trip and experience, never to be forgotten. From the long sleepless rocky drive to steep uphill climb, the unnerving trail of the landslide area to finally reaching the mesmerising Tilicho Lake. This experience will be engraved in my memories forever. 

With all excitement and anticipation of the much-awaited trek, we (me and my friends along with a guide) began our journey from Kathmandu on March 28. After stopping briefly at Mugling for dinner, we reached Besisahar early in the morning. After having breakfast in a nearby hotel, we left for Manang.

The drive to Manang was far from comfortable. Travelling through the rocky terrain had us bouncing from left to right, and even banging our heads on the roof of the jeep. But the scenery outside definitely made up for the rough drive. We drove past pristine waterfalls, pastures with horses gazing around and beautiful landscapes. After what seemed like forever (due to the rough drive), we finally reached Manang.

After a good night’s sleep, next morning we decided to explore around. To acclimatise in higher altitude, we hiked up a small hill till Gangapurna Lake. The route was dry, rocky and dusty, but the view from the top was absolutely captivating with mountains on all sides.

We woke up early next day and got ready to start our long hike. The trail was wide and easy during the first few minutes but the route started getting narrow and steeper. With every step, we could feel our breaths getting heavier. The dreading feeling that possibly the climb would never come to an end, had completely engulfed our minds. And after walking uphill for more than 3 hours steadily, we stopped for lunch on the way. There we came to know that the steepest climb was yet to come. With exhaustion and dread written all over our faces, we started walking again.

The landslide area on the way toTilicho base camp was undeniably one of the most difficult one. With a signboard that indicated we had reached the landslide hill, we could see how scary and dangerous the trail was. The narrow track had barely enough space to step on both your feet at the same time. To top it off, the trail was covered with loose stones and gravel making it even more difficult. With slow steps, where one miscalculated step would lead you straight down the hill, we finally reached the base camp.

We woke up tired, but mostly excited as it was the day to hike up till Tilicho Lake. The hill we had to climb today was through another landslide area. This trail was not only extremely steep but also very uneven with swift turns every few minutes. I sat down for a short rest; looking down the hill, I could see few of my friends panting and walking slowly whereas few had already trekked ahead. After resuming the trek, we finally reached a signpost that read ‘Tilicho Lake 35 minutes’. There were multiple frozen puddles and snow along the way to the lake. Slipping on the ice multiple times and laughing at each other, we finally reached the magnificent Tilicho Lake.

The view was majestic! A completely frozen lake beside a huge mountain. The unadulterated beauty completely captivated us. We sat there still, trying to process the mesmerizing beauty surrounding us. We spent as much time possible, taking in the beautiful view till it became freezing cold. After reaching the destination, we realized that every difficulty we had encountered along the way seemed justified. We then returned back to the base camp.

It was an amazing trip and experience, never to be forgotten. From the long sleepless rocky drive to steep uphill climb, the unnerving trail of the landslide area to finally reaching the mesmerising Tilicho Lake, this experience will be engraved in my memories forever. 

Asaya Khadka