Trekking the Amazing Hongu Wilderness
Nepal is a popular destination for mountaineers and trekkers because of its magnificent landscapes and breathtaking mountain ranges, with peaks such as Everest, Annapurna and Lhotse. These spectacular and challenging climbs lure mountaineers to return to Nepal to conquer the dangerous weather conditions and the mountains.
Trekking tours through the valleys and beautiful terrain of the country play a great role in the tourism industry of Nepal. And once in a while, the brave and the adventurous try to take on challenges that few are prepared to – places like the Hongu Wilderness.
The Hongu Wilderness, or Hongu Basin, can most certainly be described as off-the-beaten-track. It is advised to seek the assistance of a guide who is familiar with the Hongu Basin, as the approachable routes to the Hongu Wilderness are extremely treacherous and routes depend on weather and seasonal accessibility. Mountaineering skills and advanced trekking experience is also advised for those who are prepared to take on the Hongu Wilderness, as it is a difficult trek, but definitely worth the effort.
Some of the routes and most of the Hongu Basin reach elevations of approximately five thousand feet. It is therefore not suitable for humans to live or remain here for long periods of time. Therefore, there are no clearly visible routes or paths, as most of this region is uninhabited. One of the routes takes trekkers through the Imja Khola Valley, which runs alongside the Imja Glacier, and goes through the Ampha Labtsa pass. A lower altitude route would be by way of Kem Ba La or along the Arun River.
The Hongu Basin itself is an inspiring sight, with five lakes located in the centre of the basin. It is embraced by immense moraines and incredible glaciers. Phenomenal views and majestic peaks, such as Baruntse and Chamlang, await trekkers, as does the fascinating wildlife and vegetation that adds color to this forbidding landscape.
As inhospitable as the Hongu Wilderness might be, its beauty, due to the absence of human interference, is unmatched. Trekking through the Hongu Basin, a relatively unexplored destination in Nepal, is a challenging but rewarding adventure. After completing this thrilling journey, trekkers would have earned their sense of pride and achievement.