SMALL GROUP TRAVEL


Kangshung Face of Everest Trek

  • Embark on a world-class trek to Everest's most stunning and secluded face
  • Revel in solitude while exploring an unbelievable mountain paradise
  • Multiple days hiking and camping among some of earth's highest peaks
Tibet Kangshung Everest
Trip Type: Scheduled Departure
Destinations:
Trip Length: 22 Days
Activity type(s): Trekking, Cultural Tour
Trip Extensions: Call 888-570-7108 for custom extension options

Of Everest’s three faces, the east—or Kangshung—is unquestionably the most beautiful and least visited. Most experts consider the hike up to the Kangshung one of the two or three finest treks on earth.

We begin with a visit to Lhasa, then make the phenomenal drive along the Lhasa–Kathmandu road to Gyantse, Shigatse, and Shekar, where we meet our Nepalese Sherpas. (We employ Sherpas, as well as Tibetans, up here, bringing the full amenities of Nepalese trekking to Tibet.) From Shekar we drive south to Kharta and begin trekking in alpine desert, our gear carried by laconic yaks. Soon we’re reveling in that surprisingly uncommon Himalayan commodity: true wilderness, headed to what we think of as Our Own Private Everest. Crossing a 16,000-foot pass, we suddenly enter a delicate subtropical forest, gazing up at the ice citadels of Makalu and Chomolonzo. This salmagundi of alpine scenery, from typically Tibetan dryness to lush forest, all of it topped off with towering ice peaks, is one of the Kangshung trek’s great attractions.

A few days later we enter the Kangshung Valley and the aura of Everest. We spend a couple of days hiking and catching rays of mountain beauty at our high camp, flanked by looming peaks, including Everest itself, front and center, a 10,000-foot palisade of ice and snow. You will search the world in vain for a more heart-stoppingly gorgeous spot (or one more remindful of the words of explorer H. M. Stanley, who relished “the sweet and novel pleasure of indifference to all things earthly” that camp life offers, and which is “one of the most exquisite and soul-lulling pleasures a mortal can enjoy”).

We loop back to Kharta and the Tibetan rain shadow (after having been out of sight of human habitation for 10 or 12 days) and drive to a night by the fabled Rongbuk Monastery, set exquisitely beneath Everest’s North Face, and then spiral down from Central to South Asia and the relative comforts of the Tibet-Nepal bordertown of Zhangmu, before hopping across the border and making the sweet, lush, welcomely warm drive to Kathmandu.

Everest’s Kangshung Face trek map

Itinerary at a Glance


  • Day 1: arrive in Beijing
  • Day 2: fly to Lhasa
  • Days 3 & 4: Lhasa
  • Day 5: Lhasa to Gyantse
  • Day 6: Gyantse to Shigatse
  • Day 7: Shigatse to Shekar
  • Day 8: Shekar to Kharta
  • Days 9–17: on trek
  • Day 18: camp at Rongbuk
  • Day 19: Rongbuk to Zhangmu
  • Day 20: cross border, drive to Kathmandu
  • Day 21: Kathmandu
  • Day 22: depart Kathmandu.