The word Cho Oyu has a beautiful meaning – The Turquoise Goddess, or the Goddess of Turquoise, owing to its colors in the setting sun. The peak offers equally marvelous as the name, standing on the border of Nepal and Tibet. It neighbors Mt. Everest (8848.86m/29032ft), the tallest peak of the planet several dozen kilometers to the east
Climbing Cho Oyu (8,201m) is reaching the top of the 6th tallest peak on the planet and is a classic Himalayan climb. The journey will follow the classic climbing route from Tibet. It was first climbed by the small Austrian / Tibetan Team in 1954.
Cho Expedition is technically easier to climb than other 8000’ers peaks, making it a great first 8000-meter peak for climbers with previous high-altitude climbing experience. We transverse Cho Oyu via the West Ridge/West Face, which has two short technical sections. Advanced Base Camp (ABC) (5800 m/19029 ft), Camp I (6500 m / 21325 ft), Camp II (7100 m/ 23294 ft), and Camp III (7400m /24,278 ft) are some of the camps where we acclimatize before climbing Cho Oyu.
For a mountain of such altitude, it poses a moderately demanding difficulty. This makes it the second most climbed eight-thousander in the world, giving ground only to Mount Everest. Climbers are also heartened by the fact that most endeavors end in reaching the summit of Cho Oyu. In fact, it owns the highest success rate of all the 8,000-meter summits.
Cho Oyo situates just right on the Chinese and Nepali border in the northeast of Nepal. Despite Cho Oyo being the easiest of the 8000m plus peaks to climb, it does however still demands a high level of high-altitude climbing expertise and toughness that comes from previous climbing experience. Like other peaks, it exists to be climbed and enjoyed by adventure seekers.
Just a few kilometers to the west of Cho Oyu, there is Nangpa La Pass (5716m/18753m) glacier. This pass is the main trading route connecting Tibet and the Khumbu Sherpas of Nepal. This pass lies between Rolwaling and Khumbu Himalayan Ranges. The core reason why Cho Oyu is considered easier than other 8000m peaks is due to its more moderate faces as you climb the usual northwest route to the summit.
However, it still requires planning and logistical support in order to safely reach the summit and alleviate altitude sickness. Preparation is everything, and Outward Adventure Treks and Expedition will leave no chance. We have well-experienced climbing experts who have climbed several mountains including Cho Oyu. They have collected experiences climbing Everest at least 21 times; almost record-breaking ones.
The journey to Cho Oyu top lasts about 8 weeks, starting and ending in Kathmandu. Since Mount Cho Oyu is situated between Nepal and Tibet, the Cho Oyu Expedition starts in Kathmandu with days allocated for the necessary paperwork and permits before heading into Tibet.
The journey to Cho Oyu base camp can be done either via flights to Lhasa or land through the Rasuwagadhi border. The climbers shall have a few days to acclimatize before driving to the Cho Oyu base camp, and a couple of days of acclimatization at the camp itself.
Then, we hire yaks to transport our expedition supplies to ABC (Advanced Base Camp). On this two-day journey, we will cross rivers, and hike over rocky moraine before we arrive at ABC, “our base camp” for a couple of weeks.
Acclimatizing well in the ABC, we climb further up and practice climbing up in the higher camps; Camp I (6500 m / 21325 ft), Camp II (7100 m/ 23294 ft), and Camp III (7400m /24,278 ft) before pushing the summit.
Reaching the top, we enjoy some minutes having the picturesque scenes of the mountains including Everest, Lhotse, Nuptse, Makalu, and dozens of other neighboring peaks of the Mahalangur Mountain Ranges. Capturing the sceneries around, we climb back to those camps and further back to the ABC and end our climbing portion and trek back to Cho Oyu Base Camp and drive/fly back to Kathmandu to end our entire adventure.
Once we reach Mount Cho Oyu Base Camp from Kathmandu by driving, we meet our Tibetan Yak herders (drivers) with their animals. Yaks carry our loads (our gears and necessities) to the Advanced Base Camp which lies at the base of the renowned Nangpa La Pass.
Spending a couple of days here, we make some acclimatizing hikes before pushing to Camp I and further up. With the assistance of our Sherpa crews, we placed Camp I (21,000 ft.) atop the West Ridge.
From here, we do continue practice for moving up and down for around 10 days. Then, we head to Camp II (23,100 ft.) and Camp III (24,500 ft.) which are set up by our Sherpa guides. We repeatedly move up and down the mountain to enhance strong acclimatization and overall fitness. Once our last camp is set and the team has rested for a few days at Advanced Base Camp, we begin the summit climb. Before our summit attempt, team members will spend the night at Camp III sleeping on supplemental oxygen, solidification, and aiding the body’s circulation systems.
Our final summit push begins at around 11 pm. We move ahead with supplemental oxygen on summit day. From High Camp, we ascend the West Face through a rock band and up snow slopes of 25 to 40 degrees to reach the West Ridge proper.
This gentle ridge leads to the large summit plateau at approximately 26,000 ft above sea level. From here we spend the next hour traveling across this plateau to reach the true summit and spectacular 360-degree panoramic views including Everest, Lhotse, Ama Dablam, and the garlands of dozens of Himalayan vistas.
After reaching the summit, our team descends to Camp II. It takes approximately five days to clear the mountain and move equipment back to Base Camp. Once we arrived at Base Camp and said farewell to our Tibetan yak drivers, we drive back to Kathmandu to end our entire trip.
Day 1: Kathmandu Arrival (1350m)
Day 2: Rest day in Kathmandu: Tibet Visa Preparation
Day 3: Tibet Visa Issue and Expedition briefing
Day 4: Drive from Kathmandu to Timure
Day 5: Cross the border of Nepal and Drive to Kerung (1962m)
Day 6: Drive from Kerung in Old Thingri (4,300m)
Day 7: Acclimatization and Preparation day in Old Thingri
Day 8: Drive from Old Thingri to Cho Oyu Chinese Basecamp (5,100m), Via Rombuk Monastery
Day 9 to 11: Stay in Cho Oyu Chinese Basecamp (5,100m); Acclimatize in the surrounding atmosphere
Day 12: Trek from Cho Oyu Base Camp to Intermediate Camp (5,400m)
Day 13: Ascent from Intermediate Base Camp to Advance Base Camp (5,700m)
Day 14 to 39: Climbing Period (Advenced Base Camp to Cho Oyu Summit to Advanced Base Camp)
Day 40: Descend from Advance Base Camp to Cho Oyu Base Camp
Day 41: Drive back from Cho Oyu Base Camp to Thingri
Day 42: Drive from Thingri to Kerung
Day 43: Cross the border and drive to Kathmandu
Day 44: Leisure day in Kathmandu City
Day 45: Transfer to the International Airport for final departure.