World Expeditions will operate all scheduled treks in the Annapurna and Everest regions of Nepal from September.
The leading Australian Nepal trekking specialist made the announcement yesterday.
The company’s local staff have now completed a thorough review of trail conditions, bridges, its private campsite infrastructure and the general state of community villages, the company reported. The staff have reported they are satisfied with operational safety in the Annapurna, Everest, Mustang, Dolpo and Api regions.
The company’s priority is clients’ safety, World Expeditions chief executive, Sue Badyari, stressed.
“We need to ensure the safety of each trekking region before we declare a trek operable,” Badyari said.
“We’re delighted that the due diligence safety assessments are completed in the major trekking regions and that the results allow the first treks to begin again immediately after the monsoon in September.
“We have close to 140 trips operating from the beginning of September through to the end of 2015 and we are finding travellers are keen to continue with their plans if it is operationally safe to do so.”
Badyari said a further final review wouuld be conducted in the Annapurna and Everest regions after the monsoon and the company did not expect any changes to the current situation.
“We’ve also established that the entry and departure points for our treks, being road access and air strips, are reliable,” Badyari added.
“Our base in Kathmandu, the Radisson Hotel, has received an official green sticker that confirms it is structurally sound and Kathmandu international airport remains fully operational.
“We are fortunate that in the Everest and Annapurna regions, our private campsites are all in good condition, with only minor repairs needed to two of our Everest camps, which will be completed well before the season recommences.
“Otherwise, with our full service camping treks in all other regions, we can continue to be as flexible as we need to be and not reliant on any private accommodation whatsoever.”
Badyari said she expected trekking in other areas to follow, as safety assessments were completed.
Meanwhile, the company’s Nepal Earthquake Appeal has raised AUD 220,000, which is being allocated to relief effort in some of the worst hit areas and to the rebuilding of schools, which were devastated by the earthquakes.
Edited by Peter Needham