Annapurna region trekking information
Best time to trekking in Annapurna
Best time to trekking in Annapurna are autumn and spring seasons of the year. The months of these season day time warm enough and night fairly cold. In autumn from mid September to mid of December almost days are crystal clear and enough sun shine and also weather condition is stable which makes high passes are easy to cross. The temperature will drop considerably as you trek everyday vary to high elevation- day time sunny and warm between 10C to 20C but wind is cold always and night between -5C to -10C depends on the places. Same as spring season weather condition gets warm enough stable and flowers are seen blooming everywhere. In spring from end of March to May is the best time to trek. During the monsoon and winter seasons trekking is not so much favorable due to heavy rain fall and cold as well less visibility. The higher elevation areas and passes are almost covered with snow during the winter. Trekker can choose the particular time as per their convenient time frame of the months of autumn and spring seasons. Most of the lower elevation areas of trek covers mid-hill region so these region day time pleasant warm enough and morning and evenings are cold.
Permit and fee for Annapurna hiking
Regular Annapurna trekking trails like Base Camp, Circuit Trail, Ghorepani, Sikles and Mardi Himal are not required special trekking permit. Only the Upper Mustang area trek requires fee US 500 per person for 10 days visit as special area entrance (Minimum 2 persons required for thre trek). However Annapurna’s most of the areas are controlled by Annapurna Conservation Area Project (ACAP). Therefore all the trekkers must have conservation permit to get entry before starting the trek and can be obtained in Kathmandu or Pokhara.
Trekking Style in Annapurna area
Simply most of the Annapurna trekking area visit can be organized as teahouse lodge stay basis due to well managed and facilitated local eco village lodges managed by tribal communities. So the trekking style will be hike all the day then accommodate and eat at lodge. However some places of lodges are well facilitated and really great food service but some are very basic standard which are sufficient to accommodate you and serve the foods. In teahouse lodges rule trekkers must have to eat their lunch, dinner and breakfast at same lodge wherever they stay. The most of the places have power supply or Solar or local community micro-hydro power. Trekkers may charge their camera battery by paying at lodge.
People and Culture
Annapurna trek is one of Nepal’s huge diversified landscape covered destination therefore it has amazing cultural diversity. Mid hill to lower elevation areas are almost settled by different mixed ethnical groups mainly- Gurung, Magar, Brahaman, Kshetri,Thakali, Kami, Damai etc. In trans-zone area behind the Himalayan Manangese and Mustangese can be seen and upper parts of kali Gandaki valley Thakalis community people are broadly settled. They are also one of the successful trading groups of Himalayas and contributing for the region as vital economic roll. Most of the communities are involved hotel and restaurants selling as best Nepali Dal Bhat.
Manangese are originally living upper Marshyangdi and Manang valley they are another trading group of Nepal and having well trade link to many South-east Asian countries. Traditionally Manangese are skilled traders and trace their roots back to Tibet. Religiously they are Tibetan Bon Po origin group and still they are Buddhist with traces of their ancient, shamanistic faith followers keeping alive their tradition outside Tibet. Trekkers may encounter many religious festivals along the trek to this region. Particularly the Gurungs are famed for their cultural performances, which are easily seen while trekking in the region. Many villages along the trails will arrange performances for trekkers during the main festive seasons. Their cultural tradition is called RODHI which is very popular cultural traditional show of Nepal.
Flora and Fauna in Annapurna
Remarkably Annapurna area’s geographical and climatic variation is amazing vast diverse. Therefore it has abundantly well preserved flora and fauna in nature. The landscape of the region varied about 800m above to 8091m high Himalayan range. Mainly up to 3500m elevation of mid hill region covered by dense forests and the vegetation consisting tropical species to more temperate type of forest trees including oak, beech, varieties of rhododendron, magnolia and walichina etc. The Upper valleys have coniferous forests of pine and juniper just below the tree line. In the rain shadow trans-zone to the north of the Himalayas, the landscape is quite barren being an extension south of the Tibetan plateau and dry windy. Along the trek many native animals can be seen including many birds, blue sheep, Himalayan Tahr, Beer, deer and monkeys. Annapurna area is also home of many butterflies and it is huge butterfly living museum in nature.
Trekking in Annapurna region mostly starts and ends beautiful lake city in Pokhara which is just 200km away from Kathmandu. Pokhara is well access with road connection which is 5-6 hours drive from Kathmandu and just 30 minute by flight to go there. It has regular tourist bus service facility from Kathmandu and also regular bus service connection with other cities of Nepal. Trekkers to Annapurna circuit get bus to Besishahar or chartered vehicle and further of Besishahar now road access can be found up to Syange. If trekkers are traveling by local public transportation then need to change the bus from Besishahar. Most treks starting or ending in Pokhara will require the use of buses, van, jeep or hired car to reach the trailheads and after end of the trek need to arrange same mode of transportation as convenience.