Taplejung to Jiri (October-November 2012):

3. Crossing Lumba Samba pass (3 days)

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At 5159m Lumba Samba pass was our first major pass of this trip (but an easy one). To acclimatize further we put two intermediate camps between Olangchun Gola and the crossing of the pass, respectively at 3880m and 4450m. A small snow fall (the only one during the entire trip) occurred during the night spent at the higher camp. Upon reaching the pass we had spectacular views over Kanchenjunga (8450m) and Jannu (7710m). Lumba Samba pass is in fact a triple pass. At the ′third′ (most western) pass, we could see Kanchenjunga (and Jannu) on one side and Makalu (8481m) on the other side.

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Leaving Olangchun Gola.

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Caravan of yaks heading toward Tibet, at the point where the trail from Olangchun Gola bifurcates into two trails, one leading to Lumba Samba pass, the other to Tiptala Laon the border with Tibet.

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The path toward Lumba Samba pass then traverses a dense rhododendron forest.

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We set our last camp before crossing Lumba Samba at the end of this valley at 4450m.

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View of the valley in the opposite direction, with our camp on the left side of the photo.

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Next morning at the camp after a small snow fall.

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Starting our ascent of Lumba Samba pass with perfect weather. (Second photo by Matt Scott)

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Spectacular views of Kanchenjunga (center left) and Jannu (center) during the climb.

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The same two mountains after crossing the ′first′ (most eastern) pass of the triple Lumba Samba pass.

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View of Makalu from the ′third′ (most western) pass of Lumba Samba pass.

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The isolated village of Thudam (3560m) reached after a long descent from the pass. This village, where we set our camp for one night, seems extraordinarily poor. It has no easy connection to any other village in Nepal and does some trade with Tibet through Umbak La (5232m).

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Children in Thudam.

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Other parts of the trek:

1.   Taplejung to Olangchun Gola (4 days)

2.  Olangchun Gola (1 day)

3.  Crossing Lumba Samba pass (3 days)

4.  Tudham to Hongon (3 days)

5.  Hongon to Yangla Kharka (5 days)

6.  Yangla Kharka to Sherpani Col High Camp (4 days)

7.  Crossing of Sherpani and West Cols (1 day)

8.  Hongu basin to Namche across Amphu Lapsta (3 days)

9.  Namche to Jiri (5 days)

 

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