While I was planning my possible Torres del Paine solo hike, I ran into some logistical challenges (read: I also wanted to go to Antartica, but did not have the budget). So, I had to find another challenging circuit to hike – that became the legend Annapurna Circuit in Nepal. So here’s my blog on planning and preparing my Annapurna Circuit solo hike.
For readability, I chopped my post up in different stages:
- Settle on the idea
- Settle on a date
- Lock-in the trip
- Create a rough day planning
- Creating a packing list
Step 1: settle on the idea for the Annapurna Circuit solo hike.
However, there are some key challenges for me at the moment:
- What exactly to hike. The Annapurna Circuit is160–230 km, depending on where you start. I’m still figuring out what will work best.
- How will the altitude impact me? As the Annapurna Circuit climbs up to 5000 meters and above, there is high chance of altitude sickness if I don’t prepare well. As I am used to making 30-40km days of hiking, I have to be extra careful to not over-do myself.
- When to go. The best time is either October through November or mid-March to mid-April. In november/december (because of the monsoons in the months before), everything along the circuit is refreshed, clean and vibrant. Views are usually clear and the night sky is extremely visible. Though the weather is generally warm, nighttime temperatures drop below freezing. This is the busiest period on the circuit and tea houses book up very quickly. From mid-march to mid-april most of the snow has dissipated, leaving crystal clear skies. There is often a strange haze that can be seen from the lower altitudes during May. However, this soon passes and cannot be seen from higher up the trail. As the monsoon period builds towards the end of May, the days become hotter and more humid which makes trekking at lower altitude quite uncomfortable
Step 2: validate my Annapurna Circuit solo hike.
Step 3: settle on a date for my Annapurna Circuit solo hike.
Step 4: lock-in the trip.
Step 5: create a rough day planning.
Fallback options for my Annapurna Circuit solo hike
Especially since my experience at the Iceland Laugavegur trail and it’s fast-changing weather, I promised myself to make a back-up planning 🙂
Step 6: creating a packing list for my Annapurna Circuit solo hike.
Budget for my Annapurna Circuit solo hike
Total cost estimate –