“Take nothing but memories, leave nothing but footprints!” – Chief Seattle
Travelling allows one to experience moments that can turn into lifelong memories. Everything one sees, experiences and absorbs during the trip, stays with them. Visiting Makalu-Barun National Park in Sankhuwasabha is one such exciting and memorable trip. Travelling through vehicles or on foot, up and down the roads, started a new chapter of life.
One can start the journey from Itahari, Dharan or Dhankuta till Num. These are the more preferred routes as people can travel easily on vehicles. From Num, the road goes downhill to the bank of Arun. Across the river starts the walking journey at the height of about 700 metres above the sea level.
Once they reach Seduwa, travellers can rest for a while and eat for the next part of the journey. From there, the next stop is Tashi village which lies at the height of 2,100 metres above the sea level.
This welcoming village always seems ready to serve the guests. Its good food and warm hospitality ensure travellers leave with good memories. The villagers even provide necessary guidance and assure accommodation for those in need.
The second day of the journey takes one till Khongma. This path is a very steep uphill. Recently, the villagers have paved stones on the trail artistically. When the tired travellers reach Khongma, Saili didi’s finger-licking food helps forget all their lethargy.
The third part of travelling gets more special because the travellers come across two mesmerising water bodies, one small and another big. They are situated at 4,200 metres above the sea level. The view is soothing to the eyes, and once is not enough to take in its beauty.
Once travellers cross the water bodies and the Septen-La Pass, they start their journey downhill, and they reach the Barun river. There is a three-hour walk along the riverside till Yang Kharka and you can spend the night there.
The next day, from Yang Kharka, travellers go more downhill to the religious site, Shivadhara. It is believed that parents who have been unable to conceive and wish for a child here get their wish fulfilled.
Another six hours of the walk take you to Langmaale, at an altitude of 4500 metres. The majestic view of the Himalayan Range washes away any or all tired feeling travellers feel. Like the cattle grazing in the field, the travellers also would want to spend their time there and nowhere else. Mornings at Langmaale is filled with sun-kissed peaks of the Range.
Love for Makalu
On the last day, travellers reach the Makalu base camp. This part of the trek is all filled with snowy, white peaks and another lake that lies on the way. It is a four-hour walk till the base camp and you can find the majestic Makalu peak welcoming you, cheering.
From the base of the peak, travellers can see the Udram Lake and other smaller ponds with their source, Barun river. Another attraction is that Sagarmatha (Mount Everest) is also visible from the viewpoint. There are many open spaces or fields for one to camp out.
The complete journey to Makalu-Barun area is truly an enriching, and once-in-a-lifetime kind of experience. From mesmerising natural beauty to welcoming villagers and good accommodation for food and lodging with easy roads, Makalu-Barun is a complete package for all travellers.
May be due to lack of popularity, the Makalu base camp is still untouched and unpolluted, because of which, it is still enjoyable and mesmerising.
Though the area was only earlier visited by foreign travellers, lately, it is being noticed by domestic travellers too. In 2020 alone, about 1,000 domestic tourists visited the area, locals say.