It is not an easy task to pack the right things for the Manaslu circuit trek. From 600 m at Soti Khola, to 5,179 m over the Larke Pass, you will have to hike through different weather and conditions.
You need to plan ahead what to take on your journey. If not, you might fill up your backpack with unnecessary items and have no space left for the important ones.
Many of the trekkers complain that they had bought unnecessary kinds of stuffs for the trek. How great would it have been if they knew what they had to pack?
So, we have come up with the ultimate packing list for trekking in Manaslu Region.
There are some things you need to know before packing though.
Table of Content
Tips to pack for Manaslu Region
You can buy/rent gears in Kathmandu
You can get to buy or rent the necessities like down jacket, tents, backpack, shoes etc. in Kathmandu. The best quality local brands are Sherpa Adventure, KAEMP 8848, Sonam and Raiko.
I personally use KAEMP 8848 gear. You can buy from their showroom in Thamel or from their factory in Baneshwor.
You can find the branded companies like North-face and Mountain Hardwear in Nepal as well.
You can also opt for renting those things for cheap if you don’t want to take it back to your country.
Leave items in the hotel
It is always recommended to travel light even though you are hiring a guide. If you have unnecessary things for the trek like souvenirs, you can leave those in the hotel.
Manaslu trek is a circuit trek. So, you can’t leave your stuff on the way and expect to pick it up on the way back!
Better leave everything in Kathmandu.
Complete packing list for Manaslu Region
In Nepal, the days are usually very sunny for around 300 days in 365. Many people take the sun for granted. Don’t! You’ll regret.
The sun is really strong in the high altitude. Especially if there is snow, it reflects the light and might blind you at times.
So, it is better to get a dark and UV protection sunglasses.
Same with the sunglasses, you also need to protect your face, neck and even your scalp. If not, you might damage or even lose your hair!
So, a good sun hat is important. Make sure that it is light to wear and easy to pack.
When the snow reflects the light, it might give you severe sunburn. It is very important to use a high SPF sunscreen and apply it regularly.
It becomes really cold at night in higher altitude. So, you need to wear a warm hat when you sleep too. Heat retention hat is preferable.
A buff is a versatile piece of fabric. It can be used as a headband, a cap, a mask, a neck gaiter, balaclava and many more.
It keeps your neck warm and prevents lips from getting dry. It protects you from sun, wind, dust, and bugs too. Use the one that wicks the moisture away.
You have to walk for a long period of time, the least you want is the underwear to chafe your skin or retain the moisture.
It is important to use moisture-wicking material like Merino wool or nylon. These materials take off the moisture from your body.
Also, it better be quick drying as you will need to pack it and trek the next day.
For the ladies, you need ease of movement with your bra. You don’t want spillovers and uncomfortable situation while on the road.
The sports bra needs to wick the moisture away and keep you dry throughout the day.
Keep a couple of pairs of comfortable sports bras.
The base layer is the first layer you are going to wear at higher altitudes of trekking. It is very important to select the moisture wicking one as it is the closest to your body.
The base layer must be warm and comfortable.
The trekking shirt also should be made of moisture-wicking material to stay dry and fresh. Pack at least 4 trekking shirts as you will be wearing those every day.
The fleece jacket is for the warmth. It acts as insulation and keeps you warmer than just wearing a big bulky jacket.
Once you wear it under your outer insulated jacket, no cold can get you.
This is the outer jacket you will need to wear to stop the wind. Down jacket does wonder as an outer layer.
If you are planning to trek from June to September, you will need a good rain jacket to protect you.
Along with the rain jacket, get the backpack cover as well.
Trekking trousers and shorts
When you are in lower altitude to hike, it might get really very hot. So, you might need hiking shorts for lower altitude and hiking trousers for the higher.
The inner gloves work as a base layer that you will wear under the insulating gloves. It also helps to do minute works with your fingers.
The outer gloves protect you from the cold, wind and snow. It needs to be waterproof and keep you warm.
Hiking socks are important to keep your leg toasty. Make sure to use the moisture wicking material as it is most prone to smell.
After the long day of walking, you will need to change to a fresh warm pair of socks. The nights are colder so you should wear thermal socks when you go to sleep.
A good quality hiking boot is important with ankle support. It is also important to get waterproof boots to stay warm and elongate the life of the boot.
Get a right size shoe and break it in before you challenge the trek. You wouldn’t want blisters on the first day of the trek.
Trainers or trekking sandals
After the long hours of trekking, you will need trainers to walk comfortably around the area. If you like to wear the trekking sandals, be sure to wear warm socks underneath.
If you are planning to trek in monsoon season, gaiters are good to keep your boots dry from the inside.
However, you can also use it to prevent mud, stones and even leeches.
You will be amazed to see how much you can stuff in a duffle bag. They are easier to pack and unpack.
If you are using porter then using the duffle bag is the best option.
Magical Nepal provides Duffle bag to its clients.
If you are planning to trek alone without the help of the porters then you might want to go for the backpack.
If your porter is helping to carry your bag, then you can carry a daypack. Keep the essentials like water bottles or hydration bladder, camera, mobile, passport, and wallet.
You are expected to bring a sleeping bag by yourself on the trek. So, carry a good compact down sleeping bag that is easy to carry but warm enough in cold nights.
Sleeping bag liner
You insert the sleeping bag liner inside your sleeping bag for warmth. It also helps you keep the sleeping bag clean for a long time and increase its durability.
Trekking poles are a must while trekking. It helps to take off the burden from your knees. It is especially important when you are descending.
Get a lightweight and foldable trekking poles.
A headlamp is very easy to use and you don’t need an extra hand!
If you want to take a night walk or have to start the journey very early, you might need a headlamp. Also, as some tea houses are poorly lit, it will be helpful to have one.
You might need crampons if you are planning to trek during the winter (December- February). These are to walk without slipping in ice or snow.
The microspikes have small spikes which can help you walk on moderate ice or snow. They are very light in nature and is perfect for light packers.
Water bottle or Hydration Bladder
You will need to hydrate yourself regularly as there is a risk of altitude sickness. You need to take a water bottle or a hydration bladder that fits your bag.
You can buy mineral water bottles but it will add to pollution. Also. they will charge you high in higher altitudes.
Needless to say, you will want a good camera to snap the beauty of your journey. If you want, you can also get a wearable camera to record from your viewpoint.
While carrying electronics like camera, mobile phone etc. you will need to charge. In cold weather, the battery discharges pretty quickly. So, get a good power portable charger.
You will have plenty of time in tea houses and lodges to indulge yourself in a good book. Carrying an e-book reader is best for travel rather than the physical one.
One, you can read at night without a complaint of low lightings in the lodges. And two, no need to carry a couple of big fat books.
Keep passport and extra money with you at all times. Keep a copy of your documents like passport, insurance, bookings etc. with you.
Get an insurance. It is important. You might need medication or even a helicopter rescue.
Make sure your insurance covers two things, the elevation of 5167 meters and helicopter rescue service.
While trekking, you are always on the go. You will not have much time to wait for the towel to dry.
Get light and quick drying towels.
For the ladies out there, pee funnel is one interesting and useful thing.
When you are trekking, it is not always convenient to pee comfortably. The temperature might be below zero and you might not get a good spot to hide.
Pee funnel is for the rescue. You can pee in the wild without having to squat.
First aid kit
Are you on any kind of medication? Then bring that along.
In Nepal, you do not need a prescription to buy the medicines. So, you can buy the medicines easily here.
Get a first aid kit as you never know when you might need it.
Water purification tablets or Lifestraw
As mentioned above, do not buy mineral water bottles. Take your own water bottle or hydration bladder.
Use water purification tablets, drops or use a Lifestraw.
You can buy water purification tablets and drops in Nepal.
The Isotonic powder will recover your energy from the workout. It also helps the water absorption.
Just add it to your drinking water and you are good to go.
Wet wipes and tissues
Do not expect to find tissues in the upper regions of Nepal. You will need to get your own. Be sure to pack extra in case you get a cold and runny nose.
You might not get to shower every day. Wet wipes are great alternatives for wiping your body.
Your lips might chap easily when you are at higher altitude. Get a lip balm with SPF to protect your lips from the sun.
Keep all the toiletries you will need. Biodegradable shampoos, face wash, deodorant, toothbrushes, toothpaste etc. You are to take those yourself.
It is a very quick and easy way to disinfect your hands when you are on the go.