Manaslu-Trek 2015: From “Namaste“ to “Tashidelek “ - and even beyond!
As trekking “rookies” of the Nepal region, equipped with high cultural affinity and staking out eco-friendly claims we intended to trek the Manaslu circuit in October 2015. As known, that region unfortunately got hit very hard by several earthquakes in April and May that year, the peak season for treks in that specific region. Unsure about the latest developments onsite, actual trek conditions, ethical and moral considerations with respect to the local people (we wanted to avoid any crisis tourism relatedness) and surely safety concerns for the entire team (guide, porter and us) we were almost about to postpone our trip. Luckily, only a few weeks before we initially planned to set off, we came across Pradip Tamang from Wilderness Excursions Pvt. Ltd – the best thing that could have happened to us and our trip!
Pradip is not only very knowledgeable of the region and its specific characteristics and requirements, trekking in general and in very much detail (very important when it comes to e.g. altitude sickness), local flora and fauna or relevant cultural aspects of the various diverse people along the trek. Furthermore he is very well connected and was hence well informed about the conditions of the trek and always very honest with us on what is possible and what not or where some flexibility would be needed from our side. We very much appreciated this consultative procedure, his transparency and even more his ambitions to always meet our individual needs during the trek: To explore the cultural and natural diversity and manifold of the area while leaving a minimal ecological footprint and considering the current limitations of the region. By any chance, we wanted to avoid the typical touristy spots and adjustments and instead be as close as possible to local life and conditions. Whatever we asked for Pradip made it happen: Being accommodated in home stays as often as possible given the local conditions of some villages still, mutual cooking ofdhal baat, individual momo-cooking lessons or enjoying a good and well-deserved dudh chiya (milk tea) at the wood-burning fire in the local kitchen of our host after completing our again very exciting daily trek section. We enjoyed it all and have gathered a much better understanding of the life in Nepal and specifically the challenges around the Manaslu in general.
And after all we simply had a fabulous and absolutely fantastic time – also personally - with Pradip and his much valued assistant Rahul and are looking very much forward to another exciting trekking episode (possibly in Dolpa) soon.
About Pradip in short, who is not only guiding you along the trek but also explains and forges links:
• Has very much knowledge about treks in Nepal, its flora and fauna, culture and customs
• Offers an open communication & transparent and honest services
• speaks very well English and can even cover the professional jargon
• Is always approachable, very ambitious and eager to meet your individual needs and requirements while considering actual local conditions
• Is very experienced and well-connected