Island Peak Expedition

Trip Facts

Duration

15 Days Days

Fitness Level

Moderate

Max. Altitude:

6,189m/ 20,306ft

Location

Nepal

Meals

B,L,D

Accommodation

Hotel

Group size

1-12

Arrival On

Kathmandu

Departure From

Kathmandu

Highlights Of Island Peak Expedition

  • An adventure-filled expedition that takes you to an impressive altitude of 6,189 meters
  • Stunning views of the Himalayas, such as Mt. Everest, Ama Dablam, Nuptse, Makalu, Cho Polu, Baruntse, and Ama Dablam
  • A scenic mountain flight from Kathmandu to Lukla and back
  • Namche - a bustling famous tourist hub and the gateway to Everest
  • Tengboche monastery, the largest monastery in the Everest region
  • Explore the culture of the Sherpa people living on the route. 

Overview

Island Peak (6,187m) is one of the busiest climbing peaks in Nepal. Island Peak, also known as Imja Tse, lies in the Khumbu Himalayan range. The peak lies in the Sagarmatha National Park, also home to the world’s highest mountain, Mount Everest. Our professionally designed itinerary makes this expedition suitable for physically fit trekkers with little or no experience in the expedition. Island Peak climbing is the most famous peak climbing in the Everest Region.

Our professionally designed itinerary offers you a couple of days extra in the same town to get acclimatized. We head for Island Peak after the essential climbing practice course, which is briefed and instructed by our Climbing Sherpa on various climbing techniques. Your historical effort to summit the peak will be rewarded with probably one of the best panoramic views in the world as you feel Lhotse, Nuptse, Baruntse, Ama Dablam, and Makalu are almost touching the tip of your nose.

Descending with a sense of achievement, our route takes us into many cultural sites, such as Pangboche, a traditional Sherpa village of Tengboche, famous for its ornately decorated Tibetan monasteries, and Namche Bazaar, the Sherpa Capital and cultural center of Khumbu. If you want a more extended trip to Island Peak, our 21-day Everest Base Camp and Island Peak or 25-day Gokyo, Everest base camp Trek, and Island Peak Adventure is another option. Our Island Peak Group trek departs every week from Kathmandu; the private trek can be arranged at any time. View our selected departure dates.

Team Composition

Trekking: During the trek, we will provide a licensed, English-speaking, experienced trekking guide. Every four members are entitled to 1 assistant guide and every two members to 1 porter.

Climbing: During the climb, you will be accompanied by an English-speaking veteran climbing guide. For a group size of 2-4 people, there will be one leading guide and one assistant guide. For a group size of 5-8 people, there will be one leading guide and two assistant guides. For a 9-12 members group, one central and three assistant guides are provided. Other staff members will include one cook and necessary Sherpa assistants for setting camps.

This arrangement is made to ensure the safety of every group member; if any member falls ill, the trip will still go ahead as planned. The optimum size or the maximum no. of members is 12.

Itinerary

Day 1: Arrival in Kathmandu

Upon your arrival at Tribhuwan International Airport in Kathmandu, Nepal, a representative from Naata Trek and Tours will be there at the terminal holding a placard bearing your name. He/she will drop you to your designated hotel. In the evening, there will be a dinner program in which you can enjoy authentic Nepalese cuisine.

Day 2: Fly to Lukla and Trek to Phakding

We have breakfast and take an early morning flight. The flight to Tenzing Hillary Airport, Lukla, is an exciting one. We land on an airstrip located on the edge of a hill and surrounded by tall mountains. After arrival, we will meet with the rest of our team members. We start our short hike towards the village of Phakding. We can take a side trip to a monastery as we only have a short hike today.

  Maximum Altitude : 2,800m/ 9,187ft
  Accommodation : Hotel
  Walking Distance : 3-4 hours

Day 3: Phakding to Namche Bazaar

After breakfast, we trek through beautiful pine forests along the Dudh Koshi River. We walk for an hour and come across the glittering Mount Thamserku (6,608m) while being assisted by the serenity of pine and Juniper forests. On a clear day, we can also glimpse the highest mountain in the world, Mount Everest.

We cross five suspension bridges, which is an excellent experience, with the last being the highest, Hillary Bridge. We continue our walk and reach the entrance of Sagarmatha National Park and then Namche Bazaar, a bustling small town and the gateway to Everest.

  Maximum Altitude : 3,438m/ 11,280ft
  Walking Distance : 5-6 hours

Day 4: Namche Bazaar Acclimatization Day

We have set the day aside for acclimatization, but we are recommended not to stay put and active. We can walk through the village and look into the culture of the Sherpa people or even go on a short hike to Everest View Hotel, where we can get great views of Mt. Everest. On our way back from Everest View Hotel, we can visit a local museum showcasing the history of Mt.

Everest and the area’s native flora and fauna. Those who want to hike longer can visit Khumjung Village Edmund Hillary School and Khumjung Monastery, which are believed to be housing the head of the Yeti.

Day 5: Namche Bazaar to Tengboche

We enjoy our breakfast and hike towards Phunki. The hike from Phunki to Tengboche is uphill. The village of Tengboche is home to the largest monastery in the Khumbu region. The monastery’s location is splendid, with 360-degree views of Mt. Everest, Nuptse, Lhotse, Ama Dablam, and Thamserku.

  Maximum Altitude : 3,870m/ 12,697ft
  Walking Distance : 5-6 hours

Day 6: Tengboche to Dingboche

We visit the monastery after breakfast. On a relatively easy trail, our trek passes through fine forests of birch, rhododendrons, and conifers. The trail then descends to Debuche, which crosses the Imjja River, before climbing to Pangboche. We chose the upper trail because it provides better Himalayan range views.

On our way, we can also visit Pangboche monastery. The hike is relatively easy from here on, which is reasonably straightforward, and the valley starts to unravel after we reach the junction of the Lobuche River. We walk down to the river and begin our final climb to Dingboche. We are welcomed by a slew of fields surrounded by stone walls to protect the crops from wind and grazing animals.

  Maximum Altitude : 4,360m/ 14,305ft
  Walking Distance : 5-6 hours

Day 7: Dingboche to Chhukung

The village of Dingboche is a summer settlement, and it provides great views of peaks such as Ama Dablam, Cholatse, and the ridge of Nuptse-Lhotse. Our hike starts from stone-walled fields onto a valley, followed by glacier moraines. The views of Lhotse and Amadablam will accompany us. From there on, the trail is cut by icy streams. We cross Bibre, and a half-hour hike takes us to the village of Chhukung.

  Maximum Altitude : 4,730m/ 15,519ft
  Walking Distance : 3-4 hours

Day 8: Acclimatization: Climb to Chhukung Ri and back to base camp

We have set aside another day for acclimatization. The alpine nature of this trip requires proper acclimatization for a safe summit attempt. We hike to Chhukung Ri, which is a peak above Chhukung village. We climb to the peak and enjoy views of the valley below and peaks like Ama Dablam and Amphu Labsa peaks.

  Maximum Altitude : 5,546m/ 18,196ft
  Walking Distance : 3-4 hours

Day 9: Chhukung to Island Peak Base Camp

The trail up to the base camp is quite steep. We walk by the southern flank of the Lhotse glacier and then along a streamside. The route to Amphu Lapcha lies to the southeast. The route takes us through Lhotse glacier moraines and opens to a wide valley. We can see the towering Island Peak overnight in the Island base camp.

  Maximum Altitude : 5,200m/ 17,061ft
  Walking Distance : 3-4 hours

Day 10: Pre-climb training on Island base camp

We have set this day to learn some much-needed pre-climb training before climbing the island peak. It builds our mountaineering skills to help our mountaineering experience and increase our chances of success.

Our climbing guides will teach you peak climbing techniques and how to use gears such as ice axes, climbing boots, crampons, harnesses, ascenders, and descenders, among others. You will also be taught how to use the ropes to go up and down and how to use the fixed-line rope.

  Maximum Altitude : 5,200m/ 17,061ft

Day 11: Island peak base camp to Summit and back to Base cam

We go to bed early and wake up at 12 to 1 am to have breakfast before we embark on our summit day. We must return by noon as the afternoon brings strong wind and harsh weather, making it unsafe. The trail ascents a few hundred meters before we reach a steep hillside. The path is initially sandy, which turns grassy as we get to a section scattered with boulders.

We climb the narrow slope and steep rocks and then follow a ridgeline that takes us onto the glacier. We follow a snow slope that leads us to the summit ridge. We will use fixed and man rope in this climb section to ensure safety. We will use a ladder to form a couple of newly formed crevasses, after which we reach the summit.

After we reach Island Peak, the vantage point provides stunning views of the mountain ranges such as Everest, Nuptse, Lhotse, Makalu, Baruntse, and Ama Dablam. The Island Peak stands at an impressive 6,189 meters and provides spectacular views. We leave the summit of the island peak and climb back to base camp, where we stay the night.

  Maximum Altitude : 6,189m/ 20,306ft
  Walking Distance : 10-12 hours

Day 12: Island peak base camp to Pangboche

As we descend today, the trail will be easier for us. We retrace our steps and pass by the wide valley of Khumbu Khola and some beautiful sherpa villages such as Orsho and Shomare. Two trails take us to Pangboche.

The upper trail takes us to a gompa, which is believed to be the oldest in the Khumbu region of Nepal. Pangboche is a scenic village with great views of mountains such as Everest, Ama Dablam, Thamserku, Kangtaiga, and the Imjja Tse River flowing down the valley.

  Maximum Altitude : 3,985m/ 13,075ft
  Walking Distance : 5-6 hours

Day 13: Pangboche to Namche Bazaar

After breakfast, we follow the trail down to Imjja Khola and up a forest as we reach Tengboche. We have lunch there and continue on a hillside covered with rhododendrons and Juniper trees. We cross a bridge over the Dudh Koshi River and descend rapidly before reaching the village of Sansa. We pass by a chorten as we reach Namche.

  Maximum Altitude : 3,438 meters, 11,280ft
  Walking Distance : 4-5 hours

Day 14: Trek to Lukla

We have breakfast and start our steep descent, which can be demanding for our tired and shaky legs in the rocky sections. We cross multiple suspension bridges over the fast-flowing Dudh Kosi River, after which the trail becomes gradual. We stretch our legs after reaching Lukla, recalling the memories of the past few days.

  Maximum Altitude : 2,800m/ 9,187ft
  Walking Distance : 6-7 hours

Day 15: Fly to Kathmandu

We take an early morning scenic flight back to Kathmandu. We can do some souvenir shopping around Thamel during the day. Our guides will help you on that matter. In the evening, we celebrate our successful climb over dinner hosted by Naata Trek and Tours.

Day 16: Final Departure

We bid farewell as your trip comes to an end today, and a representative from Naata trek and tour will escort you to the international airport.

Traveler Reviews

FAQs

Trip Information

Why Island Peak Climb?

The Island Peak climb is fun and offers fantastic views of the Himalayas in the Khumbu region. You can see Island Peak from Dingboche village, which looks like a pyramid of ice and rock. The mountain is part of the Soth Ridge of Lhotse Shar, separated by a col, with the ridge rising to the summit of Island Peak.

The climb starts in the Chukkung Valley and goes to Base Camp. Reaching the summit is a strict 9 to 12-hour round trip, depending on the conditions of the marathon. The Path includes rocky trails and scrambles to the snow line, then a section where climbers move in rope team across glaciers and crevasses, and finally a 300-meter headwall along a narrow and steep ridge about 300 meters long. The summit is small, with space for only four to five people.

After climbing the 300-meter headwall and summit ridge, you get a thrilling 360-degree view of many of the world’s highest mountains. From the summit, you can see Nuptse, Lhotse Middle Peak, and Lhotse Shar to the north. You can see Makalu to the east and Baruntse and Ama Dablam to the south, which is fantastic.

Trek Route For Island Peak Expedition

From Kathmandu, about 1,400 meters above sea level, travelers fly to Lukla (2,860 meters) to begin their trek. The trail passes through villages and green forests, gradually climbing to Namche Bazaar (3,440 meters) for acclimatizaPath. From Namche, the path goes through Tengboche (3,860 meters) and Dingboche (4,410 meters) before reaching Chhukung (4,730 meters), the starting point for climbing Island Peak.

Climbers then head to the Island Peak Base Camp at 5,200 meters and finally reach the summit at 6,189 meters. The climb is challenging, with steep slopes and high altitude. After reaching the summit, the descent follows the same route, passing villages and valleys, helping acclimate and ensuring a safe return to lower elevations.

Trek Difficulty During Island Peak Expedition

Climbing on the island peak fits well for those with reasonable fitness levels. Like every expedition, this trip includes hiking at high altitudes and traversing snow and ice, requiring good mountaineering skills. Although it is a trekking peak, it is a strenuous climb requiring good skill and fitness for a successful island peak climb. The difficulty level of the trip also gives the climbers an added sense of adventure. However, the climbing route is relatively safe, with fixed lines to the summit.

Best Time for Trek

The best times to climb the Island Peak are the Spring (March to May) and Autumn (September to November). During these seasons, the weather is the most favorable as we avoid the harsh coldness of the winter and the slippery trails of the monsoon season. The winter can be freezing at that high altitude, with harsh gusts of wind and heavy snow, making traversing the terrain difficult.

The summer coincides with the monsoon season, and the trails can be muddy and slippery. Also, the hills can be prone to landslides, which create blockages during this season. Also, autumn and spring bring colorful trails with blooming flowers. With a clear sky and vibrant views, spring and autumn are the best for climbing the Island Peak.

Terrain On The Island Peak

There is varying terrain to the summit of Island Peak. We start with the rich vegetation from Luka, such as Birch, Conifers, and Pine forests. Higher up, you will encounter rhododendron forests as well. The terrain is rocky for the most part, with rock stairs on steep and gradual trails. These are the more manageable sections of the trip; the higher you go, the more treacherous the terrain becomes.

The higher you go, the more scarce the vegetation will become and disappear, and you will be presented with rocky terrain and, in some cases, snowy trails. You will have to be careful as the trails also have steep falls.

Climbing Cost

No. of Persons Price per Person
1 Pax $2700
2-3 Paxes $2050
4-8 Paxes $1850
9-12 Paxes $1700
12+ Paxes $1700

Acclimatization

Altitude sickness is a significant problem when it comes to climbing high mountains. As we will be going upwards of 6,000 meters above sea level on this trip, proper and adequate acclimatization is necessary for a safe and uninterrupted journey. The thing that we have to be wary of the most is AMS (acute mountain sickness), and the symptoms can differ from person to person. The high elevation brings thin and dry air with a lack of oxygen. The symptoms of AMS include vomiting, lethargy, lack of appetite, headache, dizziness, cough, pneumonia, hyperthermia, and difficulty sleeping.

However, our guides hail from these high mountains and are used to the high altitudes. They are well-trained in the risks associated with high altitudes. We highly suggest you follow your trek and climbing guide and inform him promptly if you have any difficulties. Moreover, our itineraries are designed to minimize the risks of high altitude and its risks.

Travel Insurance For Island Peak Expedition

It would be best if you were insured before our expedition. Although Naata Travels and Adventure doesn’t provide insurance of our own, you will need to be insured beforehand. But make sure to choose a good insurance company that covers all requirements. Insurance coverage is recommended to cover theft, loss, medical conditions, and emergency evacuations, such as helicopter rescue.

Emergency and Evacuation

As the safety of our clients is our paramount concern, we follow the itinerary that suits us best and helps in the acclimatization process as well. On top of that, our guides are well-trained regarding the safety of the clients and carry a medical kit that can deal with some minor injuries and illnesses. Our climbing guides will be in constant contact through radio so that we are well informed of the expedition and be prepared for evacuation if anything goes wrong. An emergency evacuation could cost USD 3,000 or more, depending on the location and time of the year.

Skills Required

Although you don’t need to be a seasoned mountaineer, you will need some training for this trip. You will require some decent skills to reach the summit of the island peak while enjoying the process. It would be best if you were comfortable using ropes and Jumar, which is ascender. It would be best if you also were used to abseiling while using a figure-of-eight device on the fixed ropes.

Besides these, you will need proper endurance training to make your climb easier, as your calves won’t get too much rest. You will need to build your core strength, and some weight training can help you achieve that.  You must also train yourself to cross ladders over crevasses while wearing crampons.

Equipment and Gear

You will require good equipment for the Everest Base Camp trek and Lobuche East expedition. The equipment that you will need is as follows,

Crampons, Gloves, Trekking Boots, Climbing Boots, Trekking Poles, Ice Axe, Ice Hammer, Harness, Ropes, Helmets, equipment’s ascender, Descender, Carabiner, Tape Sling

Head: Sun Hat, Head Lamp, Glacier Sunglasses, Head Scarf.

Hand: Light Liner gloves, Fleece gloves, and Expedition Mittens.

Upper body: Thermals, Fleece Jacket with wind stopper, waterproof jacket, Down Jacket, Short-sleeve shirt

Lower Body: Lightweight pants, waterproof shell pants, Fleece or woolen trousers, Hiking Shorts

Feet: Lightweight socks, woolen socks, Cotton socks, Gaiters

Miscellaneous: Sleeping bag, Inflatable sleeping mat, water bottle, small travel bag, duffel bag, small padlocks, Pee Bottle, Pee funnel for women, Swiss knife, Toiletry bag

Medical: First-aid kit, water purification tablets, anti-mosquito cream, anti-altitude sickness pills such as Diamox or Acetazolamide, Earplugs, Anti-Diarrhea pills, Blister repair kits, Antibiotics for a chest infection, and sunscreen.

Accommodation and Food

The accommodation and food till Dingboche are the same as those on the trek to Everest base camp. The meals will be mostly Tibetan-inspired dishes and Nepalese dishes such as Dal bhat tarkari (rice, lentil, and curry) and momo (dumplings), Nepal’s staple foods. The Tibetan-inspired dishes will be Gurung bread with potato curry, Thenthuk (hand-pulled noodle soup), rikikur (potato pancake), yak steak, etc. Nevertheless, you will have options for a few Western offerings, such as pasta, spaghetti, pizza, pancakes, porridge, oatmeal, noodles, sandwiches, etc.

We will offer three hearty meals during the day (breakfast, lunch, and dinner) throughout the trek. During the climb, you will be served a packed lunch: fresh fruits and meals high in Carbs, protein, and fat, which our climbing cook will prepare. Regarding accommodation, you will stay in local lodges and tea houses till the village of Chhukung. You will stay in tented camps From the base camp to the summit and back. You will have a dining, cooking, toilet, and sleeping tent set up for your expedition.

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