Last year, Real Adventure Nepal took a group of five trekkers to Annapurna base camp trekking in December. In the beginning, the trekkers were in a dilemma about whether they should go or not. And then, they wanted us to arrange their treks along with an experienced guide and porter.
It was on early December that they had gone on the Annapurna Base Camp trek. After they returned, we were surprised to see that they were very happy. They said that even it was December, the weather at Annapurna was absolutely great. During some mornings, there was fog covering the views, but as the day progressed, the view came out incredibly beautiful.
“At some parts on the trail, we faced certain difficulties due to cold and snow. However, our guide helped us a lot and he always encouraged us to go further”, one of them said. “The porter was really helpful”, said the other.
The Himalayas looked amazing! The thick piles of snow over the Himalayas was something worth all our hardships. And the cold! We couldn’t have sustained if we hadn’t brought enough clothing, every moment was remarkable, we loved everything there,… It was overwhelming to hear them sharing their wonderful experiences.
Wait! don’t get deceived. There aren’t only the bright sides to things. There are some trekkers who face harsh weather, snow blizzards, and heavy snowfalls while trekking in the trails of Annapurna base camp in December. They should go through struggles to conquer their journey to the Annapurna sanctuary.
So, about Annapurna Base Camp in December, i cannot be 100% sure to say anything. All i can say is, it all depends on your luck. If you are lucky, you will have one of the best journeys of your life while doing ABC trek in December. If not, you will have one of the most thrilling trekking experiences.
Don’t take it too lightly, you must at least have some high altitude trekking experiences before in order to be able to do the Annapurna Base Camp trek in December.
Weather & Temperature at Annapurna Base Camp in December
Let us discuss the weather and temperature in December at ABC for a while. December is a less popular season, it is a winter month. But this doesn’t mean you cannot trek because of worse weather throughout the month. You can trek, all you have to do is start packing the adequate trekking gear.
Since winter, the temperature and weather are drastically different than in other seasons. There’s no doubt that it is cold there. The temperature at lower regions is always greater than the higher ones. With a rise in every 1000 meters altitude, the temperature decreases by nearly 6 degrees.
In late December, even the lower regions can receive snowfalls sometimes. Nights are really cold. Temperatures drop down far below the freezing temperatures at the high altitudes. So, you must gear up yourself with immensely warm clothing.
Now about the weather, some days are bright, some days are cloudy, some days can be best or the worse. Basically, the weather is sometimes the clear weather, sometimes cold like winter, and sometimes harsh like in mid-winter.
You can never be sure what you’ll see there. So, you must prepare to face whatever comes along with grace. This is what a passionate trekker does. Go well loaded and well minded. You’ll have an incredible time trekking in the Annapurna base camp.
Perks of Trekking in December
Every day of the year is special. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a peak season or off-seasons. Trekking to Annapurna Base Camp is a life-transforming experience that offers wonderful experiences.
December is officially a winter month. However, it isn’t as cold as mid-winter. Experience the moments walking under the lightly falling snowflakes at the Annapurna base camp. You will see the Himalayas at their best wearing their flawless snow jackets.
Here are some of the reasons why you should go trekking to Annapurna Base Camp in December. Have a look,
Striking Himalayan Views
So, the most beautiful thing about December is the snow-covered Himalayan ranges. The Annapurna base camp trek blesses the trekkers with unimaginable views of the panoramic Himalayas lining together. You will see the incredible Macchapuchre and Dhaulagiri Himal exhibiting their best views.
The Snow-covered Annapurna Sanctuary
The Annapurna base camp is surrounded by the mesmerizing Himalayas on all the sides. Being bounded by the astonishing Himalayas on all sides, it is also called a ‘sanctuary’. Covered with snow, this sanctuary looks just like a heaven in December. You will see the admirable peaks of gorgeous Annapurna I (8091 m), Annapurna South (7219 m), Machapuchhre (6993 m), and Hiunchuli (6441 m).
A Wonderful Christmas at Annapurna Base Camp
Imagine, you are celebrating Christmas at the base camp of Mt. Annapurna in Nepal with your friends and families. How splendid will it be? If you want this random imagination come to reality, you must come to Nepal and trek to Annapurna Base Camp in December.
Peaceful and Quiet Trails
December is a less popular time to trek in Annapurna Base camp. Thus, there will be fewer trekkers trekking on the Annapurna base camp trekking trails. You will have a beautiful time with nature. Less crowded trails are more peaceful. If you are someone who loves peaceful time with nature, trek to Annapurna base camp in December.
Stunning Photograph Opportunities
For keen photographers, December is a great time to go trekking in Annapurna base camp. The Himalayas, they dip inside lumps of snow. Trust me, they look exaggerating. Also, sometimes in December when the weather is stable, the surrounding vistas will be as perfect as in peak seasons (autumn and spring).
Note: There are lots of photographers who prefer to go to Annapurna Base Camp in a helicopter.
Discounts at the Teahouses
Because of fewer visitors and lesser crowds on the Annapurna base camp route, the teahouses on the trekking trails of Annapurna offer discounts on accommodation and food to their customers. Also, you can have some of the local dishes that the teahouses serve especially during off-seasons.
Isn’t this a chance? You’re having the best time of your life at the Himalayas and you are getting unexpected discounts and are tasting really amazing local dishes.
Packing list for Annapurna Base Camp trek in December
When you trek with proper trekking equipment and gear, half of your trek difficulties are solved. On top, December is a tricky time. It’s cold and the snow caps begin appearing thicker. So, it is mandatory that you make a proper packing list for Annapurna base camp trek in December.
Here we have prepared a packing list based on our trekking experiences and what we needed for December. Have a look,
- Full sleeved warm shirt and trousers
- A woolen cap or a hat
- A warm woolen scarf
- Warm thermals (both top and bottom)
- Woolen jumper
- A down jacket
- Fleece or woolen trousers
- Warm gloves
- A comfortable pair of hiking boots
- A gaiter for walking on snow
- A pair of teahouse sandals
Hygiene and Toiletries
- Sunscreen with a high SPF
- Moisturizer for face and body
- Lip guard
- Toothpaste and a Toothbrush
- Soap or an anti-bacterial handwash
- Shampoo and conditioner
- Hand sanitizer
- A lightweight Towel
- A toilet roll
- First aid kit box with medicines, bandages, ointments, and medical sprays.
Important Travel Documents
- Your Passport
- Your Nepalese Visa
- Travel Insurance
- Passport Sized Photos
- Map and Guide Book
- Handcash (keep it safe)
- Camera and essentials
- Head torch
- Trekking poles
Trekking to Annapurna Base Camp in December, Is it Difficult?
You might think cold will bother you while doing Annapurna Base Camp trek in December. What you think is fair, after all, winter has begun. But don’t worry, it isn’t as bad as you might be thinking.
December, it is the gateway to winter at Annapurna base camp. Trekking to Annapurna base camp in December is an arrow of splashing excitements and wonders. The trek is excellent, but there’s always a little space for the risks.
So, here are some of the trek difficulties that you might have to face while doing Annapurna Base Camp trek in December:
Would you expect other difficulties than the cold in the first place here? Well, when associated with winter, the major trek difficulties they start with a cold. In years when winter arrives early, it snows and gets so cold at the higher altitudes in December.
The cold can affect your respiration and respiratory system if you lack warm clothing. Having a respiratory threat due to cold at higher altitudes is risky. There is this thing called altitude sickness that you must take account into. You cannot afford any sorts of respiratory flaws due to cold at higher altitudes, 4100 meters max.
It’s not done yet. There are these threats of occasional snowfalls and snowstorms at different places on the trail. At higher altitudes, the trail might get closed if heavy snowfall, worse snow blizzards, and avalanches occur.
The Short Days,
Days are short in December. You see the sunrise, you trek, and then the daylight starts fading. So, one of the targets while trekking to Annapurna base camp in December is to start early and get to your teahouse before sunset. So, you have to manage to cover a long distance in a short span of time.
Closed Teahouses at Some Places,
In early December, it isn’t so cold and the snowfall is also less frequent. However, by mid-December, the weather becomes more complex. If wind blizzards and heavy snowfalls become more frequent, the teahouses might remain closed. As a result, you might have to face difficulties in finding a place to accommodate and eat.
Want to go on Annapurna Base Camp Trek? Here’s the Itinerary:
Day 01: Kathmandu or Pokhara – Nayapul – Ghandruk
We can start the journey from Kathmandu or Pokhara. On the first day, we will drive to Nayapul on a local bus or in a private vehicle. From Nayapul, the trek begins. We will trek to a beautiful Gurung village in Annapurna called the Ghandruk village. Overnight there.
Day 02: Ghandruk – Chhomrong – Sinuwa
On day two, we will begin to trek from Ghandruk. We will walk through the Chhomrung village, a big and beautiful settlement in Annapurna. After having lunch in Chhomrung, we will set off on the trekking trails towards Sinuwa village. Overnight at a teahouse in Sinuwa.
Day 03: Sinuwa – Bamboo – Dovan – Himalayan – Deurali
Are you ready for a new day? Well, today we will trek from Sinuwa to Dovan to Himalaya and to Deurali. The trekking trails are amazingly enriched in natural and cultural fascinations. There are several hotels and teahouses in Deurali. Overnight there.
Day 04: Deurali – MBC – Annapurna Base Camp
You might think it’s too early, but yes, today is the day! We will trek from Deurali to the base camp of Macchapuchre Himal, and then to the base camp of Mt. Annapurna. On this day, you will see the enthralling Himalayan vistas surrounding the Annapurna sanctuary on all sides. Overnight at Annapurna Base Camp.
Day 05: Annapurna Base Camp – MBC- Deurali – Himalayan – Dovan -Bamboo
After exploring and enjoying the sunrise view from the base camp, we will trek back to Macchapuhcre base camp to Deurali to Himalaya to Dovan, and finally to Bamboo. It’s quite a long day today. We will stay overnight at a lodge or a teahouse in Bamboo.
Day 06: Bamboo – Sinuwa – Chhomrong – Jhinu – Kyumi
Today is the day when we soak our tired body in the hot water from natural hot water spring in Jhinu. From Bamboo, we will trek to SInuwa, then to Chhomrong, and to Jhinu. After taking a hot water bath at Jhinu, we will trek to Kyumi. Overnight in Kyumi.
Day 07: Kyumi – Siwai – Nayapul – Pokhara or Kathmandu
Today is the last day on the trek. Starting from Kyumi, we will be trekking to Siwai village. From there, we will walk to Nayapul. At Nayapul, you’ll have a vehicle waiting. We will drive from Nayapul to Pokhara or to Kathmandu.
Poon Hill Trek: A feasible side-trip on Annapurna Base Camp Trek
Annapurna Base Camp Trek with Poon Hill Trek
Day 01: Arrival in Kathmandu (1310m)
You will arrive at Tribhuvan International Airport. From there, you’ll transfer to a hotel. Overnight in Kathmandu.
Day 02: Kathmandu to Pokhara (900m)
We will drive from Kathmandu to Pokhara on a tourist bus. It will take us 7 to 8 hours to reach Pokhara.
Day 03: Nayapul to Tikhedunga
From Pokhara, we will drive to Nayapul and trek to Tikhedunga. Overnight there.
Day 04: Trek to Ghorepani
From Tikhedunga, we will trek to the beautiful Ghorepani village. Overnight at the village in teahouses, lodges, or in the homestays.
Day 05: Hike up to Poon Hill (3210m) and trek to Tadapani (2610m)
We’ll hike to Poon Hill early in the morning. We will see the amazing sunrise views from Poon Hill. The view when the sun strikes the Macchapuchre Himal is breathtaking. After spending some wonderful time at Poon Hill, we will trek to Tadapani. Overnight at Tadapani.
Day 06: Trek to Chommrong
From Tadapani, we will trek to Chommrong via beautiful trekking trails. Overnight in Chommrong.
Day 07: Trek to Himalayan Hotel
From Tadapani, we will trek to the Himalayan Hotel. We will stay there overnight.
Day 08: Trek to Annapurna Base Camp (40130m)
Finally, we will reach the Annapurna base camp today. There are few lodges at the base camp where we will be staying overnight.
Day 09: Trek back to Bamboo (24345m)
Early in the morning, we will see the sunrise view over the enthralling Himalayan peaks. Then, we will trek down to Bamboo and will stay overnight there.
Day 10: Trek to Jhinu Hot Spring (1780m)
From Bamboo, we will trek to Jhinu Danda. There is a natural hot spring at Jhinu Danda. We will take a dip into the hot water to relax our tired muscles. Overnight in Jhinu.
Day 11: Trek to Nayapul (1010m) 4.5hrs.Drive to Pokhara -1hrs.
We will walk to Nayapul. From there, we will drive to Pokhara. After arriving in Pokhara, we will go on a guided tour of Barahi Temple. We will also be boating in the mesmerizing Fewa Lake. Overnight in Pokhara.
Day 12: Drive back to Kathmandu (1345m)
On this day, we will drive from Pokhara to Kathmandu on a tourist bus. It will take us 7 to 8 hours to drive from Pokhara to Kathmandu.
Day 13: Final Departure
On this day, you will fly on an international flight to your homeland.
There is no adventure where there is no risk. So, be ready to go trekking to Annapurna Base Camp in December. Trust me, with us, you’ll have the experiences that you have never had before.
We wish to see you on the trek. Have a good time.