The delightful journey of Shey Phoksundo Lake Trek takes you to one of the most mystic places in the earth i.e. to the heart of the Dolpo region. It introduces you to some exotic travel destinations ecologically blessed and pampered with traditional folks who preserve their traditional culture and religion. Amidst the Shey Phoksundo National Park, a park enriched with diverse floras, faunas, birds and animals lies a beautiful freshwater lake at an elevation of 3600 meters, which is the deepest lake of Nepal. The park and the lake enhance the glory of the Shey Phoksundo Lake trek. As per the geologists, the lake was formed after a glacial mountain collapse over a river. The collapse took place around 40 years ago and formed a dam on Suligad gorge. It consists of an outlet that forms the beautiful Ringmo waterfall. The isolated terrain, national park, lake, and the waterfall, Shey Phoksundo Lake Trek has it all!
Shey Phoksundo Lake Trek starts with a flight from Kathmandu to Nepalgunj which is followed by another flight to Jhupal. Once at Jhupal, we are already at one of the remote and isolated sections of Nepal. Slowly and gradually, we traverse through the dense and diverse ecosystem of Shey Phoksundo National Park. We walk pass traditional villages, farmlands, dense jungles, and isolated areas. No sooner, we arrive before a splendid location with Shey Phoksundo Lake right before our eyes. The azure lake in the dramatic location with wild mountains around is truly epic. A few steps more and the Ringmo waterfall that cascades from the lake are simply incredible.
As the lake traverse through the Shey Phoksundo National Park, Shey Phoksundo Lake Trek is an opportunity to get close to diverse floras and faunas within the dense and isolated jungles of the national park. As the national park is not disturbed by any kind of external forces, one can find wildlife enjoying in their natural habitat. if lucky, a trekker may be able to encounter various wildlife species inhabiting the ecosystem of the park.
The northern sections of the park are barren. The trans-Himalayan slope of the region comprises of floras like rhododendron, caragana shrubs, junipers, Himalayan birch, silver fir, etc. the southern part of the park is forested with trees of pine, spruce, hemlock, cedar, fir, bamboo, rhododendron, etc. It is believed that the park has 286 species floras of ethnobotanical importance.
Talking about the faunas, the park is home to various endangered species such as snow leopard, grey wolf, musk deer, blue sheep, Goral, Himalayan Thar, Tibetan sheep, jackal, leopard, Himalayan black bear, etc. Six species of reptiles and twenty-nine species of butterflies have been noticed in the park that includes Paralasa nepalaica, the highest-flying butterfly on the earth. Also, more than 200 species of birds have been noticed in the region. The fact reflects how rich the national park is in terms of biodiversity and the ecosystem.
Shey Phoksundo Lake Trek is an opportunity to get close to the local folks of the Dolpo region. The people of this region are mostly Buddhist and follow Bon Po religion. Bon Po religion is rarely practiced religion around the globe. It is unique of its own kind. On the trail, you can interact with locals and observe their traditional lifestyle. There are various stupas and gompas built in the trail around the settlement area. One can visit those gompas while on the way. Besides, the traditional lifestyle of the people in such difficult terrain is truly an inspiration. Though they are based on agriculture and animal husbandry, they lead a simple and joyful life with an evergreen smile on their faces.
Shey Phoksundo Lake Trek is an easy trek. It can be accomplished just in around twelve days. A trekker should walk for around four to five hours a day on average. Though the path is isolated, the trail is well marked and easy. There are simple teahouses available on the way to cater to your need for food accommodation. Though basic services are available, they make our trek easy. While climbing up the route, proper acclimatization is necessary. So, take your time and climb up gradually so that you don’t tire yourself much.
It takes at least 11 days for anyone to accomplish the Shey Phoksundo Lake Trek. But the duration of the trek may vary with the itinerary you follow. Generally, an ideal trekking day comprises of 4-5 hours walk per day on average.
The trail of Shey Phoksundo Lake Trek traverses through a trans-Himalayan region. The region extends from an elevation of 210 meters to 6885 meters hence one can notice the variation in terms of weather and climatic conditions. The annual precipitation in the southern section reaches 1500 mm while the northern part is more dry and arid that receives less than 500 mm of rainfall in the year. Generally, the region receives rain in monsoon i.e. from June to August. The Kanjiroba and Dhaulagiri massif act as a barrier that prevents rainfall in this trans-Himalayan region. The winter in this region is very cold. Snowfall is evident above 2500 meters and the temperature drops down to freezing point above the elevation of 3000 meters. Autumn (September to November) and spring (March to May) are the perfect time for this trek. During this time, the weather is clear, dry and visibility is perfect.
The maximum height that you attain during the Shey Phoksundo Lake Trek is 3460 meters. Hence, the chance of altitude sickness is minimal. Proper acclimatization is a must to avoid the risk of altitude sickness. During the trek, walk slowly and gradually, at your own pace without tiring yourself. If you notice any symptoms of altitude sickness like fatigue, weakness, headache, etc., then inform your guide immediately so that immediate action can be taken.
Shey Phoksundo Lake at an altitude of 3500 meters above the sea level in one of the most beautiful and elegant lakes in Nepal. Placed amidst the mystic terrain of the Dolpo region in Nepal, Shey Phoksundo Lake is a treasure than this Himalayan land beholds. A year is divided into four main seasons – Spring (March to May), monsoon (June to August), Autumn (September to November) and Winter (December to February). Spring and autumn and considered as the best time for trekking. During this period, the weather is clear and dry making the trek easy and rewarding. Trekking in monsoon is not a good idea and the winter is freezing cold.
The trail to Shey Phoksundo Lake is probably one of the least explored regions in Nepal therefore, the infrastructures here are not developed like that of the popular trekking regions like in Everest and Annapurna regions of Nepal. The trails are of off beaten nature. Some teahouses are built at the halting stations but the teahouses/ lodges are very basic. Generally, the rooms are clean and comfortable but simple. A trekker should adjust for accommodation on a twin sharing basis. The lodges have a hot shower facility but you will have to pay an extra amount for it.
The local foods are easily available in the guesthouses/lodges/teahouses in the route. If you are looking for varieties of food, it might not be possible. There can be few options and you must select the food items amongst the fixed menu. Generally, the local food is freshly made, healthy, and delicious. Locals eat dal (lentils), bhat (boiled), tarkari (curry) and chutney (pickle) for lunch and dinner. One can opt for roti (chapattis) or dhido (local dish) instead of boiled rice. Fish curry is also popular in that area. However, it is recommended to opt for a vegetarian dish if possible during the trek. Boiled potatoes with chutney (pickle), bread, vegetables, pasta, noodles, etc. are also widely available food during the trek.
One should be very careful with the drinking water. Do not drink water from the taps. Opt for mineral water bottles or used boiled water available at the teahouses/ lodges. You can carry the boiled water in your bottle and use a water purifier before you drink the water. Opting for fresh and healthy food/ water is a wise option that every trekker should take.
Himal Eco Treks is a specialist when it comes to Shey Phoksundo Lake Trek in Nepal. We have some guaranteed trips to Phoksundo Lake. If you are interested in Shey Phoksundo Lake Trek, then write to us or call us for more info. Make sure that you secure your place in the group by making an early booking. 2020 has been a harsh year for everyone due to the noble coronavirus thats why we specially offer you our new package Shey Phksundo Lake trek 2021. May the year ahead of it be a year of fun, travel, and adventure. Cheers to a life where we can travel, explore, eat, and have fun!