Cho Oyu Expedition


Cho Oyu stands along the Nepali-Tibetan border about 18 miles west of Everest, tied to it by a long ridge with five summits over 23,000 feet. Cho Oyu is the world's sixth highest peak but has the highest success rate of all the 8000 meter peaks because of the quality of its route, the good conditions typically found there, and its ease of access. This expedition is a joint AAI/Adventure Consultants undertaking.

Cho Oyu from base camp near the Nangpa La.

Cho Oyu from base camp near the Nangpa La. Arthur Collins

Cho Oyu Expedition

Trip Structure and Itinerary

Cho Oyu - Map

The expedition commences in Kathmandu, the capital of the ancient kingdom of Nepal. From here we travel by plane to Lhasa where we are met by staff from the Tibetan Mountaineering Association. There is time for sightseeing in Lhasa and we begin to acclimatise as we are at a height of 3,650m/11,975ft. We then transfer to vehicles for the journey overland to the mountain.

We stop for a few nights along the way to assist acclimatisation, as the vehicles ultimately take us to 4,800m/15,750ft. From the road’s end, it is a 2-day trek with yaks carrying the luggage, leading us to the Base Camp at 5,650m/18,500ft. This is a spectacular spot set
across from the famous Nangpa La Pass.

The route to Camp 1 follows the moraine up the main glacier and turns off to the east up a tributary glacier after a 2-hour hike. After a steep climb up the scree and snow, we are led to the camp at 6,400m/21000ft. We also use a Camp 1.5 at 6,700m/22,000ft.

From Camp 1, the route follows a moderate snow and ice ridge before leading through a small ice serac and out onto a broad plateau. Camp 2 is situated at 7,000m/23,000ft in a ‘football field’ looking up at the summit region. From Camp 2, a 30-degree snow climb leads directly up to Camp 3 at 7,400m/24,300ft.

The summit climb from Camp 3 will take around 12 hours return for most members and involves climbing through a short rock band just above the top camp before heading into an open couloir, which in turn leads to the summit plateau.

A small team of Sherpas will accompany the expedition to provide the real ‘carrying power’ and ensure the high camps are well stocked for the summit climb. The climbing plan involves several trips up the mountain as far as Camp 2 for acclimatisation, punctuated by rest days at Base Camp.

The summit climb will take place at the end of September/early October during the best weather window. Two bottles of oxygen will be available for each member for the summit climb. All members will be accompanied by guides and Sherpas during the summit day.

On the summit of Cho Oyu!

On the summit of Cho Oyu!
Arthur Collins





Cho Oyu Expedition

Cost, Dates and Details

$48,500 - including oxygen

Max Ratio - 5:1 

Capacity - 12 


  • Contact the AAI office at 360-671-1505 (Toll Free: 1-800-424-2249) or email at [email protected] to arrange dates for this expedition.



There is no definite measure for assessing the required skill level to climb Cho Oyu, so we prefer to discuss this on an individual basis. However, there are some broad guidelines that can be applied from the outset.

A successful team member will have been visiting the mountains for at least 3 seasons and made ascents on peaks of 6,000m to 7,000m/20,000ft to 22,966ft.



Expedition members will be required to obtain visas for both Nepal and China.

Cho Oyu Expedition

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