Ama Dablam Climbing

Trip Overview

This impressive mountain Ama Dablam (6,856m/22,487ft) is situated southern part of Everest and Nuptse Lhotse Ridge. You feel like, it is completely isolated from other peaks in the Himalaya and is renowned for its incredible beauty. Popularly known as the ‘Matterhorn of the Himalaya’, the overwhelming ice-coated granite pyramid of Ama Dablam dominates the sky above the climber’s trail to the summit of Everest. The mountain derives its name from the glacier lying on its Southwest face. The glacier looks like a jewel box hanging on the neck of the mountain, hence the name Ama Dablam, literally meaning ‘The Mother’s Jewel Box’. Interestingly, when a team led by Edmund Hillary scaled the mountain for the first time, he was nearly imprisoned by the king of Nepal for climbing the sacred Ama Dablam without permission.

The standard ascending route to Ama Dablam is made via the South-Western Ridge, the same route used by Ward (UK), Bishop (USA) and Gill (NZ) in the first ascent of the mountain in 1961. The route offers varied and sustained climb with reasonable level of difficulty. Three high camps are set up at strategic points. The climb is moderate up to Camp 1, then it gets challenging up along the narrow granite ridge. Negotiating pitches of steep ice and snow slopes, the route gets more technical from Camp 2. From Camp 3, skirt around the hanging glacier or the Dablam, cross snow arete (A sharp ridge) and bergschrund (A gap or crevasse at the edge) between ice cliffs, and scale the summit.

Important Note: Your safety is of paramount concern whilst traveling with Griffon Travels. Please note that your leader has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the itinerary if it is deemed necessary due to safety concerns. Every effort will be made to keep to the above itinerary as planned; however, as this is adventure travel in remote mountain region, we cannot guarantee it! Weather conditions, health condition of a member, unexpected natural disasters, etc, can all contribute to changes in the itinerary. The leader will try to ensure that the trip runs according to plan, but please be prepared to be flexible if required.

Day to Day Activity

Day 01: Arrive Kathmandu.
Day 02: Kathmandu Sightseeing and Preparation
Day 03: Fly to Lukla.
Day 04: Trek to Namche Bazaar.
Day 05: Acclimatization day at Namche Bazaar.
Day 06: Trek toThyangboche
Day 07: Trek to Dingboche.
Day 08: Acclimatization at Dingboche.
Day 09: Trek to the Amadablam Base Camp.
Day 10-25: Ascent of Ama Dablam.
Day 26-27: Trek back to Lukla.
Day 28: Fly to Kathmandu.
Day 29: Free in Kathmandu.
Day 30: Depart Kathmandu

Note: You only get Bed and Breakfast in Kathmandu. You are on full board rest of the trip.

Trip Highlight

» Great climbing experience on Ama Dablam, following the footsteps of the great climbing parties to Everest.
» Exploring fascinating Namche Bazaar and soaking up the Sherpa culture, tradition, and their way of life.
» Trekking through some of the world's highest peaks, with magnificent views of Everest, Nuptse, Lhotse, Makalu and Thamserku.
» Visiting the incredible monastery at Thyangboche.

Itinerary
  • Day 01: Arrive Kathmandu: 1350m (4,428ft)
    Check in to your Hotel (Yak and Yeti) right in the centre of the town, just off Thamel. It’s easy to get all the important sights in Kathmandu valley.CH
    Overnight Exclusive 5 Star Hotel, Included meal: Breakfast,

    Day 02: Kathmandu Sightseeing and Preparation:
    Today there is a half day guided tour to visit the old part of Kathmandu Durbar Square in the heart of the old city. Here is the old Royal palace, with its intricate woodcarving and four fine towers. There are several Hindu temples to house for different Hindu deities and images including the resident for Kumari, the young girl who is revered as a living Goddess from mid 18th century. You will get magnificent example of Nepali architecture from medieval period around this Durbar square. Leading away from the square in all directions are narrow alleys, full of the most amazing variety of shops and stalls.

    The day will also be for finalizing official procedure and other necessary arrangements. You will be also briefed on the nature of expedition, equipments and team composition. You can also make your last minute shopping of personal items, as you will be flying to the Himalayas tomorrow. CH
    Overnight Exclusive 5 Star Hotel, Included meal: Breakfast,

    Day 03: Fly to Lukla and trek to Phakding -2652m (8,698ft)
    Leave early morning for the flight to Lukla and easy short walk to Phakding today. The spectacular mountain flight takes approximately 30 minutes from Kathmandu. Witness the fabulous views of the high Himalayan peaks such as, Everest, Cho Oyu, Makalu, Ama Dablam and scores of other trekking peaks. After making necessary arrangement of porters and yaks, trek to Phakding. BL
    Overnight Teahouse, Included Meal: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

    Day 04: Trek to Namche Bazaar- 3,440m (11,283ft)
    The trek begins early morning along the steep uphill to Namche Bazaar, administrative centre of the Khumbu region. Namche is the largest Sherpa village with vibrant Himalayan culture and an important trading centre with a weekly market selling fresh foodstuffs brought up from lower villages. Two consecutive nights will be spent at Namche to acclimatize with the high altitude.BL
    Overnight Teahouse, Included Meal: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

    Day 05: Acclimatization Day at Namche Bazaar
    Today is an acclimatization day at Namche Bazaar. Also an opportunity to discover the area and familiarize with the Sherpa culture, tradition and their way of life.BL
    Overnight Teahouse, Included Meal: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

    Day 06: Trek to Thyangboche - 3,870m (12,693ft)
    We follow the main trail to Sanasa. From where we descend to the river; we cross it at the little settlement of Phunki Thangkha at 3,250m, then climb up steeply through the forest to Thyangboche. In the afternoon we will visit the famous monastery and to watch the sunset on the fantastic panorama of mountains surrounding us. Everest, Nuptse, Lhotse and Ama Dablam provide a wonderful backdrop to our camp at Thyangboche.BL
    Overnight Teahouse, Included Meal: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

    Day 07: Trek to Dingboche - 4,350m(14,268ft)
    We descend to Devoche and a little further on we cross the Imja Khola, whose valley we now follow. Climbing steadily the trail enters Pangboche, at 4,000m, the highest permanent settlement in this valley. Ascending the valley, we have lunch at Shomore, after which we leave the trees behind and cross a metal bridge at the confluence of the Khumbu and Imja Kholas. A short steep climb brings us to Dingboche.BL
    Overnight Teahouse, Included Meal: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

    Day 08: Acclimatization at Dingboche
    Another day for acclimatization. The terrain is most suitable for higher climbing conditioning. Walk up a slope overlooking the high Himalayan valleys. You can walk to Pheriche village where there is a clinic run by Himalayan rescue association and they do altitude talk every afternoon in the peak season.BL
    Overnight Teahouse, Included Meal: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

    Day 09: Move to Ama Dablam Base Camp- 4,570m (15,000ft).
    Trek back to Pangboche and cross the Dudh Koshi River. Climb up the trail, which takes to the Ama Dablam Base Camp. Spend the day at the Base Camp for acclimatization and further planning. C
    Overnight Tents, full supported Camping

    Day 10-25: Ascending and Descending of Ama Dablam
    Based on their previous Griffon Travels Expedition experience, the expedition leader with other crew members make the planning and other necessary ground work for the ascent and descent. A few days may be spent on the Base Camp for organizing food, acclimatization, and practicing rope and other mountain climbing skills.

    A typical strategy would look like what follows:
    After getting established on the Base Camp, move further up to Camp 1 at 5,700m (17,400 ft) along the standard route. Generally, one night is spent at camp 1 for acclimatization and then returning to the Base Camp for the final preparation to scale the Peak. There are three camps above the base camp before reaching the summit. The ascent from Base Camp to camp 1 is technically challenging. From Camp 1, follow existing fixed lines. Establish new ropes wherever necessary for both ascent and descent. The climb from Camp 2 to Camp 3 is mostly ice and mixed-climbing. The climb from Camp 3 to the summit is relatively less technical. By the Day 26, scale the peak before getting back to the Base Camp. C
    Overnight Tents, full supported Camping

    Day 26-27: Trek back to Lukla
    Trek back to Thyangboche, Namche Bazaar and Phakding finally arriving at Lukla.BL
    Overnight Teahouse, Included Meal: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

    Day 28: Fly back to Kathmandu
    We fly back to Kathmandu and spend the rest of the day at leisure. CH
    Overnight Exclusive 5 Star Hotel, Included meal: Breakfast,

    Day 29: Free in Kathmandu
    Also a reserve day to accommodate possible delay in Lukla to Kathmandu flight. If the flight is as scheduled, spend the day enjoying Kathmandu's delights. CH
    Overnight Exclusive 5 Star Hotel, Included meal: Breakfast

    Day 30: Depart Kathmandu
    The trip ends after breakfast. You will be transferred to the airport for the flight back home.
    Included meal: Breakfast

    Health and Experience Required
    Our Ama Dablam expeditions are led by professional and experienced mountaineers and guides supported by other crew members and all the necessary logistics for the expedition. Besides, there are fixed ropes up to the summit that prove helpful on the difficult terrain. Still, as the grade tough plus indicates, the climb would be a challenging one. The climbers need to feel confident and comfortable ascending or descending on fixed ropes along the steep technical terrain. Moreover, we recommend climbers to have prior experience on rock and ice climbing especially above 6,000 m. A high standard of physical and mental fitness is also necessary for the climb.

    Travel Insurance
    It is a condition of joining any of our trips that be protected against comprehensive expenses potential to incur due to medical issues or accidents (to include air ambulance, helicopter rescue, and treatment costs). Please be noted that we don't arrange or sell insurance. It is your responsibilities to arrange reliable travel insurance yourself.

    Meal
    We provide all camping equipment and gear, including tents, dining, toilet, and Kitchen tents. At base camp, we have a large mess tent equipped with all necessary kitchen gadgets including stoves, tables and chairs. Our trained and experienced expedition cooks prepare meal. We make it sure that the food we provide is hygienic and at the same time suits your palate. Please let us know if you have any special food requirements.

    We offer all varieties of food including continental and local Nepali/Tibetan items. Breakfast includes porridge, muesli, egg, bread, etc. Some of the items in the lunch include rice, lentils, beans, green vegetables, chapattis, bread, and tinned meat and fish items. Fresh or tinned fruit and tea or coffees make the desserts. For the main meal, you can choose your own menu - either local or western varieties. Local varieties include from the local Dal Bhat, yak stew, momo to the western burghers, pastas, sandwiches, and pizzas. During the actual mountain climbing, we mostly use dry or dehydrated foods, including chocolate, cheese, nuts, and muesli items.

    Equipments and Packing List
    While packing for “Ama Dablam Expedition”certain gears are essential to be considered. Please click here for the comprehensive packing list for this trip.

    Trekking Day:
    Since you will be in the remote countryside area, you will be experiencing the ‘early to bed and early to rise’ schedule. It is good to start early in the mountain because weather in the morning is presumably better. A typical trekking day starts at around 7 am. Enjoy the hearty breakfast at the lodge and begin trekking. Carry your pack containing personal items you need for the day. The porters and yaks carry all the loads. Walk at your own pace, enjoy the scenery, chat with the natives, and take photographs. The lunchtime depends upon the terrain and is prepared in the local cafe. Generally, you stop for lunch after about 3 hours of walking. The lunch hour also helps in acclimatization. The aim would be to reach the camp by the sunset. After reaching the overnight stay point, you will get afternoon tea or coffee with biscuits. If you wish, you may go for a pleasure walk around the campsite. The dinner would be ready around 7 pm. Enjoy the dinner while sharing the day’s experience with team members.

    Climbing Day:
    The climbing itinerary may vary according to the climber’s personal experience. A climbing day involves a steady climbing for 3-4 hours in the morning. After taking lunch rest and relax, there is a climb of 2-3 hours in the afternoon. However, flexibility in climbing itinerary is necessary as people climb at their own pace and respond individually to the stresses of climbing. We ensure the ratio of climbers and Sherpa guides focusing on high safety measures so that each individual climber is able to progress at their own rate.

    The Climb:
    Base Camp to Camp 1 (4,450m to 5,700m)
    The Ama Dablam Base Camp is a broad, grassy plain at an altitude of 4,450m. Camp 1 lies at 5,700m. Therefore, it is more than 1000m long walk from the Base Camp to Camp 1. Climb up along a morainal gravel ridge slope. Then cross a boulder field on the South-West ridge. There is a stream with fresh water so the place is also sometimes used as advanced base camp. It takes about 5-6 hours to get to Camp 1 which is perched on a steep rocky area. Generally, one night is spent at camp 1 for acclimatization and then returning to the Base Camp for the final preparation to scale the summit.

    Camp 1 to Camp 2 (5950m):
    The ascent from Camp 1 to camp 2 is the most technical part of the expedition. Cross the exciting granites slabs and snowy patches. The most challenging part is the rock tower, also called Yellow Tower, just before Camp 2. The climb between Camp 1 and the Yellow Tower is mostly class 3-4. Follow existing fixed lines, the Sherpas fix new ropes wherever necessary. Camp 2 is a narrow exposed area atop a rock pillar therefore it’s better to get informed if there is already any group staying at Camp 2. Takes about 4-5 hrs.

    Camp 2 to Camp 3(6,400m):
    Camp 2 to Camp 3 involves climbing on the steep ridge over the 70-degree couloirs. The intimidating rock wall of the Grey Tower tests your stamina. Put on your crampons in order to climb a steep pitch of rock and ice. Better, make use of your jumar as backup for safety. Cross the snow and ice with patches of bare rock at places leading a knife-edge, crested with snow, and overhung on both sides - the Mushroom Ridge. The Mushroom ridge links the mixed terrain on the South-West ridge below to the snowy field above of the summit. It takes about 3-4 hours from Camp 2 to Camp 3.

    Camp 3 to Summit (6,856m):
    Camp 3 lies on a relatively flat snowfield just above the big snow Mushroom Ridge. The summit climb is very cold and exposed. The route is mostly straight up but comparatively less technical than before. The climb is about a 3-4 hours climb up then about 3 hours down. The Sherpas set up fixed ropes wherever necessary. Continue up the steep snow slopes. Haul yourself up the near vertical ice-pitch. On a clear dry day, the summit looks awesome. Marvel at the breathtaking views of the Everest, Lhotse and Makalu unfolding before your eyes. Stay at camp 3 for the night and return to base camp the following day.

    Weather
    The post-monsoon season from October to December and pre-monsoon season from March to May is considered the best time for Ama Dablam Expedition. The lower valleys observe pleasant days, and it varies from cool to very cold high in the Ama Dablam. The nights may be quite cold due to chill wind. Temperatures may get as low as minus 25C above Camp 1.

    Leader(s) and Staff Arrangements
    Our Ama Dablam expeditions are led by experienced and professional mountaineers and guides who have scaled the mountain several times supported by other crew members and all the necessary logistics for the expedition. Not only in terms of qualification, but we also make it sure that our leaders have proven track of record in climbing high altitude mountains. The number of guides is chosen according to the team size to maximize every individual climber’s chance of making it to the summit without compromising the safety aspect. Our expedition leaders are also equipped with the expertise in handling altitude related problems including acute mountain sickness (AMS) symptoms. The crew members are experts in setting up tents and camps, melting snow on the route, cooking, and other daily needs.

    Team Composition
    Team composition is important to ensure safety and comfort of the climbers. We observe high safety standards, therefore, for 2 International Climbers, we assign:

    . Griffon Travel Accredited Climbing Leader
    . High Altitudes Assistance Sherpa
    . Cook
    . Base Camp Assistance and other necessary trek crew such as Porters, Yaks and Yak man
    . Because of our high safety standards, team members would be added as per the number of international climbers.

    Best Season
    Most of the expeditions to Ama Dablam are operated during the pre and post monsoon seasons. However, we also operate the expedition in early winter season for those who wish to avoid the high traffic during the pre and post monsoon seasons.

Include/Exclude

Price Includes

» Arrival and departure - transfer
» Griffon Travels Expert Sherpa Leadership
» Kathmandu- Lukla return flight
» All group camping supplies such as mountain tents, stoves, fuel, cooking tent, dining tent, shower tent and storage tent.
» All meals as stated in the itinerary
» Hotel accommodations as stated in the itinerary
» Park fees and climbing permit fees
» Liaison officer
» Base Camp staff and Climbing Sherpa support
» Radio communications, including hand held radio for each team member
» Power supply at Base Camp
» Porters and Yaks support
» Hyperbaric bag and emergency medical oxygen
» Climbing oxygen and Top Out Mask
» Medical consultation at the Himalayan Rescue Association Clinic
» A single tent at Base Camp with a foam trekking mattress
» High-altitude camp equipment and supplies, and Sherpa support on summit day
» Climbing Sherpa will establish camps, carry group equipment (including sleeping bags and pads), establish the route, etc

Price Excludes

» International flights and departure taxes
» Meals in Kathmandu (except welcome and farewell dinner)
» Personal clothing and equipment
» Excess baggage charges
» Nepal entry visa fees
» Tips for GT Climbing Guides and mountain staff
» Rescue costs or costs associated with early departure from the expedition
» Helicopter or charter flight
» Personal communications (Satellite phone, phone, fax, email)
» Personal expenses, such as soft drinks, beverage, postage and laundry
» Showers while trekking
» Battery re-charging while trekking
» Nepal Custom Duties
» Costs incurred as a result of delays or events beyond the control of GT
» Recommended insurance policies (medical, evacuation, trip cancellation, etc.)
» Additional personal Sherpa support is available, but must be arranged before the expedition.
» The cost of delays due to bad weather, road or trail conditions, flight delays, government intervention, illness, medical issues hospitalization, evacuation costs (by helicopter or any other means), or any other contingency which we or our Guides cannot control are not included

Equipment List

Equipment List
NOTE:
You can bring your personal clothing if you already have them with you, if not it’s worth buying all below mentioned clothing and equipments here in Kathmandu in good rates and your guide will help you with it. You will have plenty of time before the trek to buy stuffs in Kathmandu (Thamel).
PERSONAL EQUIPMENTS FOR TREKKING
Sun glasses
Chap stick / Sunscreen
Face mask or Scarf
Hand towel
Fleece beanie
Wind stopper / waterproof top and bottom
Cold weather down jacket below waist
Fleece jacket and trouser
Trekking trouser
T-Shirts (short or long sleeves) dry fit is better
Polypropylene thermal tops and bottom, at least 2pairs,
Wind stopper and fleece gloves
Socks and under wears
Trekking boot
Snow Gaiter (optional)
Runners / Snickers for camps
Head torch
Water Bottle/Camel Pak
Trekking / Ski pole (optional. Handy for anyone with knee problem)
Spare batteries for Camera and flash light. Check charging facility along your journey
Day pack Minimum25L with side pocket for water bottle
Small personal first aid kit

MOUNTAINEERING EQUIPMENT ONLY FOR THE CLIMBING GROUP
All equipments as in trekking equipment list except 25L day pack. Need a 40L+ day pack.
Snow Gaiter (compulsory)
Snow Goggles
Head torch
Thick socks at least 3 pairs
Gloves, thin thermal layer and thick down or acrylic filled wind and waterproof outer layer
Wind stopper Top/Wind stopper bottom
Ruck-Sack minimum 40L+, should have loop to hold Ice-Axe, pole and side pocket to hold water bottle

PERSONAL CLIMBING EQUIPMENTS WHICH WILL BE PROVIDED BY GRIFFON TRAVEL
Harness: Black Diamond on high quality
Karabiners: Two pieces Screw Gate “D” Shaped and two plain
Tape Sling: Two meters 1inch wide tape sling with free ends
Ice-Axe: Choice depends on use. Generally length between your ankle and finger tips on stretched body (60cm to 70cm).This is the choice of shaft length to go for.
Climbing boots
Crampons: Quick clip on and release design having detachable anti balling plate and a size to fit your boot.
Jumar/Ascenders: This is a device for climbing up on a rope and is a must in steep climbing section.
Descender: This is a device to climb down a rope safely. Figure of eight and ATC are other names.
Sleeping bag: Good sleeping bag of 80% – 90% down, 1000gm filled to use above base camp & normal trek,
Down Jacket: A good down filled jacket to use above base camp n normal trek.
Duffel bag: trekking/Mountaineering Basics 85 litter water proofs.

Latest News
TAAN Pokhara Chapter Explored New Trail
A team of Trekking Agencies'' Association of Nepal (TAAN) Western Regional Association Pokhara has explored a new trekking trail that starts from Kushma of Parbat and ends at Baskharka of Myagdi district.

A 17-member team led by Narayan Sapkota, former president of TAAN Pokhara, started the exploration with a drive to Kushma from Pokhara. From Kushma, the walk started toward Banau (2150 meters) through Ghumti, Bagaicha, Bhatebari, Dhakdhake and Sidhali
Your Guide
01. Hiking
01. Hiking

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02. Camping
02. Camping

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Company Info
Griffon Travel is an adventure company in Kathmandu, Nepal, which has been established by experience people from the Himalayas
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GRIFFON TRAVELS
Address: Minbhawan, Kathmandu, Nepal
Email: info@griffon-travel.com
Phone:+977.1.4115593