How Hard is Climbing Ama Dablam

Our country Nepal is rich in Natural beauties, gift resources, and wonders. There are many places and things of cultural, historical, and religious importance. The most important of all are the mountains. Among them, Climbing Ama Dablam mountain is also the dream of many adventurers. The mountain peaks of Nepal are of incredible height and do possess hypnotic beauty.

Mt. Ama Dablam (6,856m) is one of the most beautiful, stunning, and impressive mountain peaks in the Himalayas. It is located at the heart of Khumbu Region, directly above Tyangboche Monastery, the biggest and oldest monastery of the region. This iconic mountain stands high on the way to Everest Base Camp. Ama Dablam Expedition has been classified as one of the superb technical climbing. The glory of Ama Dablam is highly regarded as the Matterhorn of the Swiss Alps which epitomizes all that is grand about mountains.

Ama Dablam means Mother’s Necklace. The long ridges on each side stand as the arms of the mother (Ama) and the hanging glaciers seem to be Dablam (jewel box). This peak is the third most popular Himalayan Peak. This Peak is also known as Mountaineer’s Mountain. As soon as you step on the top of the peak, you can have an unbelievable number of Peaks. Mt. Everest (8,848m), Mt. Lhotse (8,516m), Mt. Makalu (8,463m), and Mt. Cho Oyu (8,201m) are some of them among others.

Climbing Mount Amadablam

The first successful Expedition to Mt. Ama Dablam was made by the Anglo-American- New Zealand Team in 1961. Thereafter this prestigious peak has been admired by thousands of trekkers and climbers every year.

Here, in this article, I am particularly discussing Climbing Ama Dablam.

Highlights of Climbing Ama Dablam

  • World’s majestic and beautiful mountain: Ama Dablam (6,856m).
  • Trekking is one of the world’s top ten destinations: The Khumbu Trail and Gokyo Lake
  • Rock and ice climbing
  • Stunning views of Everest and thousand mountain peaks.
  • Vibrant mountain culture, geography, and many more.
  • High-quality Organisation, staff, equipment, and services.

Ama Dablam Expedition Difficulty

Though Climbing Ama Dablam Comes amongst the easier trek for the beginners, it is technical and hard level is all around. It has plenty of challenging sections. However, this mountain is never extreme.

Sometimes the mountain can be a challenging one. You must use an ice ax, ropes, crampons, ice screws, and Jumars. The challenges are also because of the altitude. The final steep snow and ice slope requires solid rock climbing and cramponing skills.

Ama Dablam provides easy, moderate, and hard experiences. The difficulty level ranges between moderate to hard. There are several short and steep sections and near-vertical ice and rock on the spectacular ridge between Camp I and Camp- III. The climbing to the high Camp- 1st is easy climbing. The route from High Camp- II is mostly covered with steep rocks, snow, ice glaciers, etc. The final landing on the top is a long and steep climb over the snow and ice glacier. It requires both strength and technique.

Another notable obstacle of climbing Ama Dablam is the severe cold climate and wind. The weather changes dramatically. Basically, one has a significant adaptation problem than in any other mountains of similar heights.

Though it is challenging, there are fixed ropes and a well-defined route which make the climb easier as well.

How long does it take for climbing Ama Dablam?

Climbing Ama Dablam is not an easy job as this mountain stands as a legend of a steep and indomitable peak and is among one of the most technical and challenging climbs. The entire climbing expeditions can be done in about 30 to 35 days. Normally it takes 2 weeks on the mountain plus another week to get to the base camp and about 4 days to get back to Katmandu, depending on flights out of Lukla. On this note, the Ama Dablam Expedition generally takes a minimum of 30 days.

Climbing Mount Everest

Ama Dablam Expedition is one of the Challenging and technically difficult mountain expeditions in Nepal. The trek is difficult also because of the off the beaten, narrow, steep, and rough trails. Besides that, there are high chances of altitude sickness. Due to this you cannot speed up and need to travel slowly. Additionally, you need to climb few peaks in advance. The expeditions will take a few days for acclimatization.

How much does it cost for climbing Ama Dablam?

Climbing Ama Dablam costs can range from 5,000 USD to 10,000 USD depending on how you undertake this adventure. If you do everything yourself, it will cut the highest cost in half or more. The cost includes the cost of transportation, meals, and other facilities like Tents, camping, High altitude Tents, and other services. Mt. Ama Dablam Expedition can be done both in spring and autumn. However, we recommend you to ascend during the spring season.

The Expedition cost varies greatly depending upon the services you choose, the accommodations you stay and the materials you use. It also depends on how you travel, whom you travel and so on. If you travel in a larger group, you would get heavy group discounts.

However, the popular Ama Dablam Expedition Cost for 2021, 2022, and 2023 is set at USD 4500 per person.

Climbing Routes to Ama Dablam

There are altogether eight different routes to the summit of Mount Ama Dablam. However, the most popular route for climbing Ama Dablam is the southwest ridge. This is the most common route for trekkers, guides, and novice climbers. Other routes are used by professional climbers.

The climb is done with the three camps along the ridge. Camp III is established just below and to the right of the hanging glacier. The southwest route is a standard and normal route to the top. It is also considered the safer route because there are hardly any risks from avalanches.

Other Routes

  • The Lowe Route: This route is located on the mountain’s southern face. It was the second route that was successfully climbed after the Southwest Ridge Route, in April 1979.
  • The North Ridge Route: This route was first used in October 1979. This route is regarded as one of the main alternatives to the Southwest Route.
  • East Ridge: This is one of the toughest routes up to the summit of the mountain. This route was first used by the climbers in 1983.
  • The North-east Route: This route is the steepest one. This route was first used for the ascent by the climbers in 1985.
  • The Ariake-Sakashita Route: This route is located on the west face.
  • The Stane Belak Srauf Memorial Route: on the northwest face, which was first climbed in 1996 by Vanja Furlan and Tomaž Humar, earning both of them the coveted Piolet d’Or prize.
  • The north-west Ridge Route: It is among the various noble routes up to the mountain. The only time it has been successfully climbed to the summit came in 2001.

Experience Required for Climbing Ama Dablam

Barry Finley in his book “Kilimanjaro and Beyond” writes every mountain top is within reach if you keep climbing. This quote explains loudly how important is experience and preparation for a successful climb. Many experienced and professional climbers also prepare adequately before the climb. It is a must to have easy and riskless climbing as well.

Mt. Amadablam seen from Dingboche

Climbing Ama Dablam is a technical adventure activity in Nepal that requires previous trekking experience and technical skills about peak climbing gears to have a successful summit. The trip is very suitable for adventure motivated trekkers who have the ability to walk in snows ridges and adventurous trails. Walking in high altitudes might attract high altitude sickness, slow and steady walk would be the perfect solution. We suggest every trekker who is planning to come to Nepal for trekking and peak climbing adventure to do daily physical workouts (jogging, hiking, cycling, gym, etc.) before a couple of weeks. We recommend undertaking Ama Dablam only if you have undertaken other smaller peaks of the same region. Here is the list of the activities that must be done compulsorily before attempting the Ama Dablam:

  • Go for a run or hike to hills where you have to do ascents and descents.
  • Once a week, do a long walk.
  • Swim and cycle.
  • You can also go up and down the stairs of a tall building.
  • Eat healthy food.
  • Keep on doing yoga. If you can, do more yoga related to breathing.

Best Season for Climbing Ama Dablam

Change in the environment is inevitable. It is the course of Nature. So we don’t have the same season all year round. In our country Nepal, we have four seasons viz. summer, autumn, winter, and spring. The summer season is of course hot. It is excessively hot in the Terai realm. The valleys and the hilly regions are not less hot as well. However, the high mountain region has cool climates. Autumn on the other hand is a mild season. It is neither too hot nor too cold. The winter season starts in November and it is the season of hardships. It is unbearably cold in the valleys and northern parts of the country. The spring season is also like the autumn season. The spring season is also known as the king of the season. It is the season of mild sunshine and no rainfall. From these points also we can understand that the spring and autumn seasons are more suitable for trekking and climbing in Nepal. Here is a short description of Ama Dablam Climbing seasons.

Autumn Season (September- November)

This is the best time to climb Ama Dablam. The weather will be lovely during this season. Moderate temperatures, clear sky with outstanding views will attribute to make your trek a lifetime memory. This is a peak trekking season in Nepal and the tails will be full of trekkers and climbers.

Spring Season (March-May)

This is another best time to visit Nepal. The temperature will still be moderate. It will be warm even at high altitudes. The trekking trails will be decorated with different varieties of wildflowers like Rhododendrons, orchids, etc. This season also affords appealing mountain views.

Winter Season (December- February)

Though winter is counted as the off-season for trekking in Nepal, it is an ideal option for trekkers who don’t like to travel in crowded trails and who can withstand severe cold. There will be snowfall at higher elevations and it gets colder during the night. Days are still warmer with plenty of suns shines and clear blue skies. Winter can be the best time to trek towards Everest Base Camp but climbing Ama Dablam during winter is full of challenges.

Summer Season (June- August)

Nepal experiences summer rainfall. Therefore, trekking will be difficult during summer. The trails will be wet, muddy, and slippery. There will be occasional floods and landslides in some places. However, rain shadow zone like Manang and Mustang may offer perfect traveling experiences even in winter. Climbing Ama Dablam in summer also must be avoided because frequent heavy rainfall may spoil the pleasure of your journey. It is also one of the reasons for difficulty on the trail.

Gears Required for Climbing Ama Dablam

Ama Dablam is a technical peak. It has many faults that may put you at risk. Regarding this, you need to have the following climbing gears and equipment. Moreover, these are not limited ones.

  • Mountaineering boots
  • 65-liter backpack
  • Helmet
  • Harness
  • Ice ax with tether
  • Crampons
  • Ice screws
  • Figure 8
  • Jumar (ascender)
  • Carabiners (locking and gate; plenty of both)
  • Repair kit items
  • Sleeping bag and sleeping pad
  • Sun protection (hat, lip balm, sunscreen, etc.)
  • Cold-weather cap
  • Base-layer tops and bottoms
  • Lightweight fleece bottoms
  • Fleece top
  • Gore-Tex tops and bottoms
  • Additional personal clothing (socks, long-johns, and undergarments)
  • Small backpack
  • Duffle bag(s)
  • Hand sanitizer
  • First aid kit
  • Personal toiletries (toothbrush, toothpaste, toilet paper, etc.)
  • Documentation (passport(s), visa(s))
  • Urine bottle (and funnel kit, if necessary)
  • Waste containment kit

Interested in Climbing Ama Dablam? Then here you go!

Conclusions

Ama Dablam is the third most popular mountain peak in Nepal. This mountain peak is on the choice list of mountaineers and trekkers because it is one of the most beautiful peaks in Nepal. It is not as high as Mount Everest but it inspires respect and is extremely popular with mountaineers and tourists. Climbing Ama Dablam needs a lot of effort and technical skills that is why mountaineers should have some previous climbing experience. The way up is difficult and leads through steep ice and rock South-West Ridge. No matter how beautiful it is, it demands strength and endurance. If you are planning for any such adventure, choose Ama Dablam. I guarantee you, you’d definitely love it.

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