Mt. Namchak Bawa
Mt. Namchak Bawa Travel Guide, Tibet
"Namchak Bawa" means "the flaming thunderbolts" or "the spear stabbing straightforward to the sky" in Tibetan. The main peak is 7,782m and famed as “the father of icebergs”. The foot of the peak abounds with a host of hot springs and exuberant vegetation, which is an ideal resort for leisure and exploration.
The 7,782m Namchak Bawa Peak is the 15th highest in this planet and the No. 1 of all the peaks below 8,000m. The colossal triangle body is covered with deep snow and mists all year around which makes it hard to see its real face. It was not until 1992 that the Sino-Japan Mountaineer Team conquered Nanjiabawa. Today it has become a very hot and challenging destination for professional mountaineers.
The west slope of the peak is a bluff that goes down to the bottom of the valley. A long mountain ridge, which consists of several peaks over 7,000m, winds its way northwestwards. Between Namchak Bawa and the Peak of Naipeng in the south three colossal glaciers grow downwards and finally disappear in the lush green forest. The 7,234m Lajiabailei Peak in the north, shaped like a horse saddle, is also permanently mantled with fog and snow.
Due to the complex geographical structure of the Yarlong Tsangpo Canyon where the peak is located, earthquakes and snow slides always haunt Namchak Bawa.
Best time to go
in the autumn when the sky is clear
Though the Peak can be seen from Pailong, Lulang or Pai, we recomend view it at Pai, which is closer and less commercialized. Unless you plan a trek to Metok, the Namcha Bawa can be seen along the route.
Lhasa to Bayi- buses available at east station and long-distance station of Lhasa, starting from 8:00am onward, Y155 /8hrs/470km, along one of the best road in Tibet.
Bomi to Bayi - buses and jeeps available at the Bomi square, Y70/head for bus, Y100/head for jeep
Bayi to Pai[派乡] Trafer Station - direct daily bus from Bayi to Pai starts from the Post Hotel square in Bayi at about 10am, Y50/130km/5~6hrs. Chartering a jeep to Pai costs around Y800.
From Pai to Bayi leaves at 9am every day, which means that one will have to spend at least one night in Pai to explore the sceneries.
There is a checkpoint on the way to Pai. It will be a problem for those who don't have an access permit.
Pai Transfer Station-> Menba/门巴 -> View Point （Guanjingtai/观景台）-> Gega/格嘎-> Zhibai/直白 , you can either trek on foot and stay overnight at one of the villages on route, or, charter a tractor from Pai for around Y100/trip.
Though almost all guide books and websites claim that Zhibai is the best location to view the Peak, in fact it's not correct. From here, you can't even see the whole range! The best location is the View Point on the way after Menba village, a GPS will show you that it's only 14km from here to the Peak.
A return trekking takes 2 days: Pai to Menba: 1.5hrs; Menba to View Point: 4hrs; View Point to Gega: 1.5hrs. Zhibai is just 2 bridges distance away. Lodging at Gega or Zhibai villagers' home(Y10~15). For returning to Pai, you may hitchhike at Gega Bridge or walk along the same way as you come in. There is a hot spring nearby Gega, where you can have a good stretch before leaving.
Bayi - Numerous choices of hotels and restaurant, but most of the guesthouses are without shower.
Pai - small hostels in the village offering beds from Y10 up,without toilet and shower. Brother's Hostel is recommended. Meals are more expensive than that of in Bayi, counting Y10 for vegetable dish, Y18 for meat.