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trip gradings & training

trip gradings & training

difficulty ratings 

We have graded our trips to give you an idea of how they might fit your current or desired level of fitness and stamina. As most of our trips take place in remote and non tourist areas, facilities are often basic in nature and trails are more rugged than those on the main Annapurna and Everest Trails. This is part of the appeal of our trips, yet they do require a slightly different mindset and level of fitness than a normal commercial trek.

 

 

 

We are partnered with a trekking training specialist, Rowan Smith from Summit Strength to help you prepare properly for our adventures. We offer a basic preparation guide for our adventures below but highly recommend contacting Rowan to discuss your personal requirements. Everyone is different, after all.
Click here to find out more.

 

Grade 1: Retreats

Eg Himalayan Sacred Lakes Meditation & Yoga Retreat

Our retreats have vehicular transport directly to the village of Sirandanda. The bus and or jeep trek can be long. Tents and Dining tent, chairs and tables are provided as are basic clean toilet facilities. A feature of our retreat is our daily walks through forests and to nearby villages an point of interest. These can last for 2 hours and involve stair climbing and descending. They don’t involve any pack carrying and are optional. You can remain in the village all day if that is your wish. The altitude at Sirandanda is only 2000 m so altitude problems are minimal.

A key part of our retreat is the 1 day (5h r) trek up to Nag Pokhari at 3200m for meditation and yoga right underneath Himalayan giants in a deeply spiritual place. This trek is up steep stairs and footpads through rhododendron forests. You do not have to carry anything. Tents and a toilet and dining tent is established at Nag Pokhari. We are completely self contained here and there are no other facilities. Whilst the pace is slow you will enjoy it much more if you prepare adequately beforehand and practise ascending and descending stairs or steepish hills for a couple of hours twice a week and one 5 hour walk once a week at least 3 months before the trek.

Grade 2: Introductory Treks

Eg Our Womens’ Trek and Families and Childrens’ Treks in the Manaslu Region

These trips involve trekking, for up to five or six hours a day at a slow but steady pace. You will need a good level of fitness and good health. These treks are not ‘easy’ treks and you will need a good level of fitness, stamina and good health.

Trails in the region can be on steep rough stairs and footpads in remote terrain for the most part. You are required to carry a small daypack of 5 to 7 kg.

Practising descending and ascending stairs or steep hills for 30 minutes a day, 3 to 4 days a week, 3 months prior to departure, with a 7 to 10 kg pack and gradually increasing speed will assist you greatly.

Trekkers engaging in these types of treks benefit greatly from Rowan Smith’s Summit Strength programs.

Grade 3: Introductory To Moderate 

These trips involve a combination of what is described in our Introductory and Moderate levels. Most sections are introductory however there are some moderate sections

We recommend an hour of aerobic type exercise three times a week, a minimum of three months period to your departure. Hill or stair walking for an hour with a 7kg daypack is also highly recommended at least once a week.

Grade 4: Moderate

These adventures involve trekking for up to 6 or 7 hours a day at a steady pace. You will need a good level of fitness, stamina and must be in good health. Treks don not require you to carry a heavy pack. Be prepared for potential variable weather conditions.

Suggested preparation: We recommend 45 minutes of aerobic exercise, three to four times a week. Hill walking with some long descents and ascents with a 10kg pack  is ideal.

Grade 5: Moderate To Challenging

Eg Rupina La Trek

This trip grading involves a combination of what is described in our moderate and challenging grades. Most days are at moderate level yet the pass day is challenging at altitude . You do not need to carry a heavy pack.

Variable weather conditions may require long days (10 hrs) and the remoteness of the terrain may require route changes. There are some narrow bridge crossings.

We recommend 45 minutes of aerobic exercise, three to four times a week. Hill walking with some long descents and ascents with a 10kg to 15kg pack  is ideal.

Trekkers engaging in these types of treks benefit greatly from Rowan Smith’s Summit Strength programs

Grade 6: Challenging

Manaslu Base Camp trek via the Rupina la

These treks involve trekking in remote areas for up to 8 to 10 hours a day, possibly more. They are in remote regions with higher altitudes ( 4700 to 5700m) in some parts. Some sections may be through snow and on scree. You will need an excellent level of fitness, be prepared to carry a full pack weighing up to 15kgs (depending on the trip you choose) and be completely comfortable in adverse weather conditions and remote locations where evacuation may be very difficult.

Hill walking with a 5-7kg daypack is also highly recommended at least once a week for leg strengthening and aerobic fitness. The best exercise for trekking is bushwalking involving relatively steep ascents and descents. Hill walking with a 7kg pack in variable weather conditions is a must. Multi day walks are ideal preparation for our challenging adventures.

Trekkers engaging in these types of treks benefit greatly from Rowan Smith’s Summit Strength programs

Grade 7: Introductory Mountaineering and Higher Altitude Treks 

Mera Peak Amphu Labtsa

These adventures are classed as expeditions. They involve either extreme trekking and or basic mountaineering. Expect remote and poorly defined trails in variable weather conditions for up to 12 hours a day (possibly more subject to weather conditions and altitude). This may include a number of demanding high pass crossings and evacuation may be difficult from remote areas. These adventures are suitable for first time mountaineers wishing to take the step from trekking into the realm of mountaineering. Prior experience trekking at altitude is preferable but not essential and you should be comfortable in adverse weather conditions. Prior technical mountaineering experience is not necessary. Terrain will involve low angle snow slopes. Ropes may be used during treks for glacier travel and steeper sections of ice and snow. When mountaineering, basic mountaineering instruction is given by our mountaineering guides.

 Physical fitness should be an ongoing thing, which should start from a base at around four to six months prior to departure and increase to build maximum endurance, stamina, flexibility and familiarity with the anticipated routine as much as possible by your trip commencement. Three to five hard sessions of 45 to 60 minutes of physical exercise per week such as running, hill walking, swimming, cycling or gym work will build excellent aerobic capacity and overall endurance and stamina which are so important in trekking and climbing at altitude. Overnight or multi day bushwalks (on rough, loose and rocky terrain) should be incorporated in your training regime; this develops skill and confidence on difficult terrain you will find on expedition. Rest and recovery, whilst at the same time steadily increasing your routine and incorporating variety, are just as important parts of the process if you intend to m Trekkers engaging in these types of treks benefit greatly from Rowan Smith’s Summit Strength programs maintain and enjoy the regime for any duration. 

Training for an 800m peak –

An interview between Seane Pieper and Rowan Smith

Click here  and watch the full interview between Rowan Smith and Seane Pieper, discussing  insights around trekking in Nepal, training for a big mountain climb, honing in on nutrition and hydration and many areas which will be incredibly beneficial for an aspiring hiker, trekker or mountaineer.

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