Best Trekking Seasons in Nepal
- December 26, 2022
- Jiwan Bhandari
From diverse terrains harboring a myriad of wildlife to many cultural settlements along the winding ridgelines of the deep gorges and ravines, the landscapes of Nepal’s trekking destinations are fantastic. Thousands of trekkers, as a result, tend to visit Nepal every year.
As stated, the best time for a majority of high-altitude treks in Nepal is best suited to do during the spring and autumn months. Various factors play a role in making a trekking journey memorable. Small factors that, at first glance, do not seem to hold much importance, but tend to stack up in making the adventure lean either way- good or bad. They are majorly boxed in with suitable timing.
The spring season, as is the nature of spring, brings the thawing of winter and the fresh rejuvenation of the land. March to May is the time when the winter fog and morning mists tend to dissipate, giving clear views of the mountain peaks while trekking. The landscape becomes vibrant as well, fresh with the bloom of new flowers and tree leaves.
Likewise, the autumn months also come about after the rain-showers of summer have finally stopped. September to mid-December is the time when the echoes of the upcoming winter are seen only through small natural wonders, like the changing colors of the Fall Forest, or the quiet ambiance brought about by relatively colder dawns and dusks, and warmer afternoons.
Besides clear visibility and good climatic conditions, the spring and autumn months also present fewer national flight cancellations due to weather.
The spring begins at the mid-weeks of March and lasts till the end days of May. The weather during spring is clear, with no rain or heavy clouds to obscure the Mountain View while trekking.
The spring also makes the land vibrant; the valley forest and woodlands begin to blossom, and the animals hibernating during winter awake as well. Rhododendron flowers in the Himalayas present bright red and pink tinctures to enjoy, contrasting against the ivory peaks. Besides trekking in the mountains, spring is also the best time for other adventure activities as well, like white-water rafting and jungle safaris.
Average temperatures in Nepal tend to drop 6° Celsius for every 1,000 meters of altitude gain. The average temperatures in spring vary due to the topographical factors of Nepal; the southern lowlands of the Terai experience hot summers with mild winters, while the northern winters are severe and summers are mild. In the mid-hills and the Himalayan foothills, the average spring temperatures tend to be, on extrapolation, a maximum of around 30° C during the day and can drop down to about 18° to 17° Celsius at night-time. The temperatures of course decrease as you trek higher up the elevation.
Similarly, the autumn months experience average maximum daytime temperatures of 18° C, while the temperature drops down to about 2° to 3° Celsius at night-time. The chances of precipitation during spring are very less, and on occasion- if there is rainfall, the precipitation tends to drop to about 312 mm.
Some of the best treks for the Spring Season:
Benefits of Trekking in Nepal in Spring
Clear and Sunny Days
The spring presents open skies with very few clouds to obscure the mountain views. Vast gaping valleys and distant views of the peaks are presented quite majestically during the spring. The afternoons are also sunny, presenting suitable temperatures for treks. The spring presents the best sights and natural sceneries to enjoy. Highland pastures also become verdant, and herds of cattle and yaks are brought about for grazing as well.
Compared to autumn, the spring season experiences fewer crowds as well. The springtime is best for trekkers who are looking for fewer crowds while trekking. The autumn months experience several trekkers than the spring, which is ideal for people who want fewer people on the trekking trails. However, compared to the summer and winter months, the spring season does experience more trekkers.
The autumn season lasts from September to mid-December. This is the time when the landscape is emerging from the rain downpours and transitioning into winter. The middle-time of these two natural phenomena leaves the landscape quite magical.
The autumn months present a serene ambiance, with mornings and evenings shrouded in light mist while the afternoons are sunny. The weather during autumn is also the most suitable for treks because of the clear clouds and fewer chances of precipitation. The average daytime temperatures during autumn in the mid-hills and the Himalayan foothills tend to be a maximum of about 18° to 19° Celsius, while the temperatures drop down to about 3° to 4° Celsius at night-time.
As stated, autumn has the most suitable weather condition for trekking. The skies tend to be quite clear with few clouds to obstruct the Mountain View. The vast landscapes also present vibrant colors of the fall. As the heavy rainfall and storm clouds clear away at the end of August, the coming autumn months feel fresh and exhilarating.
Clear Views and Beautiful Scenery
The autumn months also experience the bloom of Himalayan wildflowers. Meadows and pastures in the Himalayan foothills tend to bloom quite beautifully in the autumn, while the woodlands start changing colors from green to rusty browns and orange.
The autumn months are also famous as Marigold Season, as the marigold flowers bloom in vast numbers throughout the hills and the Himalayan lowlands in Nepal. The clear weather is also accentuated by dramatic towering views of the Himalayan Peaks.
Wide Option for Treks
The autumn months also present a wide variety of trekking options. Unlike other seasons in the country, autumn months present a gateway to a large number of trekking options throughout Nepal, both for low and high-altitude journeys. The clear weather presents a myriad of choices for treks, making it among the most preferred trekking season in Nepal. Many more trekking journeys become available during autumn, many of which would otherwise be quite full of hassle to complete otherwise.
Some of the best treks for the Autumn Season:
13 Days Everest Base Camp Trek
11 Days Everest Base Camp Trek
Manaslu Circuit Trek
Langtang Gosain Kunda Trek
Everest 3 Passes Trek
Kanchanjunga Base Camp Trek
Dhaulagiri Base Camp Trek
10 Days Annapurna Circuit Trek
10 Days Annapurna Base Camp Trek
5 Days Poon Hill Trek
The winter season in Nepal takes place from December to February. High-altitude treks in Nepal are difficult to do during the winter months because of the heavy snowfall. Mountain Passes during winter also tend to get blocked because of the snow. Flights are also often canceled or delayed because of bad weather. Nevertheless, low-altitude treks are still possible to do during the winter months. Temperatures, however, tend to drop below zero at the Himalayan foothills at sundown, and the cold atmosphere makes it harder for trekking at higher elevations.
Key Information for choosing trekking seasons in Nepal
- While the spring and the autumn months are the most suitable for treks, Nepal is open for trekking journeys all year round, even in the winter and the summer.
- It is best to book flights and hotels in advance during the spring and autumn months as the surge of trekkers coming into the country rises during this time, which can make it difficult to get late flights.
- Aside from spring and autumn treks, Nepal presents many options for summer treks as well, like treks in Mustang and Dolpo- both rain-shadow zones where rainfall is almost non-existent.
- While the weather and the climatic condition are best during the spring and the autumn, it is still good to keep in mind that the Himalayan weather is unpredictable and can sometimes show unusual behavior, like rainfall or fogs.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What are some of the best options for winter treks?
Although winter treks are not generally recommended, they can still be done. Low-altitude trekking journeys, like the Poon Hill Trek or the Everest View Trek among others, can still be done during winter.
What are some festivals that can be experienced while spring and autumn trekking?
During May, the Tiji Festival takes place in Mustang. Likewise, various Jatra takes place in the city as well in the spring. The festival of colors- Holi, also takes place in March. Similarly, Nepal’s biggest festivals- Dashain and Tihar, take place in October.
Are there good options for summer treks in Nepal?
The best summer treks in Nepal take place in the rain-shadow zones, like Mustang and Dolpo. The rain-shadow zones present a different landscape from other popular trekking destinations; the terrain is arid and laden with amazing rock formations. Upper Mustang Trek and Dolpo Treks are best for summer.
Nepal is one of the best destinations for treks. It has a wide variety of options for people of all preferences. It presents amazing adventures and unforgettable experiences. It is a county that must be visited at least once in life.