The Manaslu Circuit trek is one of the best treks in Nepal. Manaslu Circuit trek in December serves as an adventurous and peaceful trek. It is a great time to enjoy the serenity and breathe taking views of snow-capped mountains.
This trek is less crowded than other classic treks like Everest Base Camp and Annapurna Circuit trek. The trek takes you around Manaslu, the world’s eighth highest mountain at 8163m.
During the Manaslu Circuit trek, you’ll pass through the subtropical jungle at lower elevations. Through the Himalayan foothills and will cross the challenging Larkya La Pass that is at an altitude above 5,213 meters.
December in Manaslu Region is definitely cold but you will also notice clear sky and dry weather. Also, prepare to catch sight of various frozen lakes, streams, and waterfalls throughout the circuit.
The temperature is warm during daytime but drops significantly as the sun sets. Trekking in Manaslu during this time is certainly challenging but equally rewarding. With a little bit of preparation, Manaslu Circuit trek in December is possible and adventurous.
Manaslu Circuit trek weather in December
December is the beginning of the winter season in Nepal. This time happens to be cold and dry that makes it challenging and adventurous. The skies are mostly clear and bright and the mountain views are magnificent.
The weather tends to get colder as you ascend. The daytime is mostly sunny and warm but the nights and mornings demand better insulation and preparation. The temperature easily drops to -20 degree Celsius on average as night falls. Thus this demands both physical and mental preparation.
If you are an amateur trekker then winters are not the best time. It is best to opt for spring or autumn. But if you are a professional looking for adventure and a quieter trekking experience than December is the best time.
The visuals that you will witness in all sort of frozen or semi-frozen form will leave you speechless. It is also the best time if you want to capture the majestic Mountains at its best.
Manaslu Circuit Trek Difficulty in December
Early December is a good time to go for Manaslu Circuit trek. However late December in the Manaslu region is severely cold, especially in the mornings and nights. In the higher altitude, there is the possibility of heavy snowfall which makes it difficult to cross the Larke La Pass trail.
Thick layers of snow will cover the trekking path completely. During this time the local people migrate to the lower altitude to escape the cold. Hence most of the teahouses remain closed at the higher altitude. However, you will not go completely homeless there. There are a few locals at your service even in cold.
But, with professional training, Manaslu Circuit trek in December should be an exciting and a fulfilling experience. It is a great way to challenge and discover your inner strength and capabilities.
Food and Accommodation
Though in December due to cold weather people migrate to lower regions, hence most tea houses remain closed but there are some that are open. And Dal Bhat will be preferably served.
In Samagaon there will be a variety of menu and you could also get to enjoy some desserts too. Also along the way, you will find places that have menus with limited items. However, you can always get egg noodle soup or just noodle soup. An amazing dish of the locals that will help you stay warm.
As for accommodation, you will get a room on twin sharing basis and that usually ranges from USD 6- 9. You can also take the whole room without sharing, but that will cost you the price of the full room.
Guide or Porter in December
For Manaslu Circuit trek in December, it is important that you hire a guide or porter. The high altitude and the change of weather in a short time can be dangerous in high places especially in winter.
This season also witnesses occurrence of snow storms. For your safety particularly for Larkya Pass, take a guide with you. A guide who has already been there will know safer ways and will also know the nearest teahouses.
Also, the Manaslu trial remains covered with snow in December. Thus walking on snow can be difficult. Hiring a porter will set you free from the baggage burden and this will allow you to focus on your own safety.
You can get a guide for USD 25 per day and a porter for USD 15 -20.
All trekking routes of Manaslu reach up to 5213 m in altitude. So this can cause altitude sickness to trekkers. In winter from late December, the weather is cold and as such the risk of altitude sickness is high.
Hence, before you embark your Manaslu trek in December you should understand the symptoms of altitude sickness. Also, you should take proper acclimatization.
And note that all the trekking in Manaslu is moderate but quite strenuous. The trek starts from the lower altitude of 710m i.e Soti Khola and reaches to a higher altitude of 5213m, the Larkya Pass. With the increase in altitude, the risk of altitude sickness also increases.
Taking proper rest and walking slowly is the key to avoid AMS (Acute mountain sickness). It is never a good idea to speed up your trek or continue your trek while having symptoms of altitude sickness.
Always reach out for help from guide or porter if you have any symptoms of AMS and take the necessary precautions before it gets fatal.
Also drinking alcohol is alarming. Do not drink at all. Alcohol consumption boosts the risk of altitude sickness.
Trekking Permit for Manaslu Circuit trek
To take Manaslu Circuit trek you need various permits. And the trekking permit cost varies upon the season that you trek in. Unlike from September to November where the permit costs USD 70 per week and additional USD 10 per day after that.
From December to August this charge becomes USD 50 per week per person with an additional USD 7 per day if you want to stay extra. Hence the cost is slightly cheaper if you plan to trek in December.
Other permits required for the trek are the Annapurna Conservation Area permit and Manaslu Conservation Area permit both of which is USD 20 each.
You will need a TIMS card if you are extending your trip to the Annapurna Base Camp.
Packing for Manaslu Circuit Trek in December
With the increase in altitude, there will be a change in temperature, pressure, and oxygen level. In order to make your journey successful, you will certainly need important trekking equipment and gears on the way.
In December due to snowfall and low temperature, it gets severely cold in Manaslu region.
So, along with general items like trekking poles, sleeping bag, sturdy backpack, and first aid kit etc you must pack some special items like:
- Thermal innerwear
- Thermal jacket
- Windproof and waterproof jacket
- Rain gears (in case of snowfall)
- Thermal trousers
- Thick warm socks
- Warm gloves
- Thick warm hat
- Snow-proof hiking boots
At the lower altitudes, the weather will be constant and fair. As the altitude increases, the temperature will start to decrease. Also, be sure not to pack more than 20kg.
Manaslu Circuit Trek is a popular trek in Nepal. And for someone who enjoys a peaceful trek and is comfortable with cold temperatures, December is just the right time. With a little bit of preparation, physical and emotional strength anyone can complete the trek.
Manaslu Circuit trek in December is a package full of adventure. A journey that will take you through the high mountains and varied landscapes with diverse flora and fauna.
For any further questions or queries, please feel free to contact us. It is our pleasure to guide and assist you in planning the trek.