January 17, 2023
“ Island Peak vs Mera Peak ” is quite a common puzzle that runs in the minds of novice climbers. The peaks are really famous in the circle of climbers as the top trekking peaks in Nepal. So which one to pick, Mera Peak or Island Peak? Are you also having the same confusion?
If yes, your mind will have some ease now. This blog explains a clear comparison between Island Peak and Mera Peak. Beneath, you’ll find sections about the peaks, their major highlights, trekking & climbing routes, difficulty levels, expertise levels, and more comparisons.
And after reading all these nicely presented comparisons, you will easily choose your peak. The long battle of thoughts will conclude here, and it will be a start of a new adventure. The adventure could be Mera Peak or Island Peak, or maybe both. It’s all up to you, with whom you want to go. So let’s start the comparisons.
Location: Hinku Valley, Everest Region, Nepal
Parent Range: Mahalangur
First Climb: Mera Central: May 20, 1953, Col J.O.M Roberts and Sen Tenzing.
Route: Mera Glacier
Mera Peak(6,476m) is a peak in the Mahalangur Himalayas of the Everest Region. With a height of 6,476m, Mera Peak Climbing is also famous as the highest trekking peak in Nepal. Mera Peak in Nepal has three main summits: Mera Central(6,461m), Mera North(6,476m), and Mera South(6,065m).
Perched in the Hinku Valley, Mera Peak Nepal is the ultimate peak for beginners. It is a trekking peak, as per NMA(Nepalese Mountaineering Association), which means it is less technical. Newbies looking for their first climbing experience are the right fit for this peak. The route runs via the Hinku Valley of the Everest Region and involves trekking and glacier walking.
Legendary Col. Jimmy Roberts and Sen Tenzing were the first people to climb it in 1953. Since the exploration of the peak in the 50s by specialists Edmund Hillary, Eric Shipton, Tenzing Norgay, and George Low, many have climbed this peak. They explored this peak and ultimately climbed eight-thousanders. Thus, it is even a peak for preparation before the higher mountain expedition.
Location: Khumbu, Everest Region, Nepal
Parent Range: Khumbu Himal
First Climb: Hans Rudolf Von Gunten in 1956.
Route: North Ridge
Island Peak, aka Imja Tse, is a mountain in the Himalayas of the Everest Region. With a staggering elevation of 6,160m, Island Peak Climbing is among the most popular trekking peak. The peak appears like an island in the white sea of snow from a distance, hence named Island Peak. Imja Tse is the actual name of the mountain, but Island Peak is more popular.
Beginners from around the world come to the peak to try their first climb. Not only for beginners, but it is also famous among expert climbers as an acclimatization peak. It is not that technical to climb. The journey rewards stunning mountain views all around and more.
Island Peak’s southwest summit was first scaled by the famous team of a British expedition in 1953. The climb was a part of training and acclimatization for the team. Heroic climbers Tenzing Norgay, Charles Wylie, and Charles Evans were the group members. Yet, the main summit was kissed by Hans-Rudolf Von Gunten in 1956.
The route to Mera Peak begins after arriving in Lukla. From Lukla, it moves through Paiya and Panggom. The walk will happen just by Sherpa villages, green valleys, rivers, and lush vegetation. From Panggom, the trek will take place via Ningsow, Chhetra Khola, Kothe to Thangnag. By this, you will be in the scenic Hinku Valley.
After Thangnag, the walk will continue towards Khare Camp via Dig Glacier and Dig Kharka. The walks completely change here as they involve more glacier and moraine walking. An acclimatization day at Khare Camp and climbing preparation are necessary before the summit climb. The route leads towards Mera Base Camp and Mera High Camp via Mera Glacier.
The actual summit push begins from Mera High Camp. Using fixed ropes, you will climb Mera Peak on non-technical steep sections. And ultimately, you will reach the summit of Mera Peak. Following the summit, the route returns to Lukla via Kothe and Thuli Kharka. The journey of Mera Peak Trek will take around 18 days to complete. Check Mera Peak Climbing 18 Days for the detailed route.
Like Mera Peak, the Island Peak route also begins from Lukla. From the hills of the Lukla Airport, the road turns down to Phakding. The trail reaches Namche Bazaar by touching the banks of the Dudh Koshi River. And from Namche Bazaar, the path directs toward Tengboche and Dingboche.
Until Dingboche, you will use the standard Everest Base Camp Trek trail. Then, the path will approach Island Peak Base Camp via Chhukung. In the base camp, you will have rest and pre-climbing training. Once you are fine to push, you will follow the trail leading to the High Camp.
The actual climbing starts from Island Peak’s High camp. Using fixed ropes, you will climb the Island Peak summit via glaciers, snow headwalls, and steep sections. And the best part of the climb will be the view from the top. Lhotse, Ama Dablam, Everest, and Makalu look so close and clear.
Following the summit, the route begins to turn around. It retraces via Chhukung, Tengboche, and Monjo to Lukla. Altogether, you will spend 17 days on the road to Island Peak Climbing. For detailed information about the course, check Island Peak Climbing.
Island Peak vs Mera Peak Route happens in the same Khumbu or Everest Region. Both start from Lukla but separate after moving a little ahead. The trails of both routes are pretty alike. You will see similar things on both roads. Thus, the trekking part is almost identical. However, the Mera Peak route, which happens via Mera Glacier, is straightforward, just snow climbing. Island Peak’s path, which runs from the peak’s north ridge, is slightly technical.
Mera Peak is a trekking peak according to classification by the Nepalese Mountaineering Association. The peaks in this category are fewer or no technical sections, perfectly matching the needs of newbies.
As this peak has no technical sections, the climb is pretty basic. Climbers with basic climbing training and a good endurance level can do it. There is no need for prior climbing history for Mera Peak. Comparatively, Mera Peak is less technical than Island Peak. No crevasses, or narrow ridges, just ice trekking & climbing.
Mera Peak Climbing involves trekking for several weeks in the high areas of the region. High altitude, steep hills, rough sections, glacier and snowy paths, long trekking hours, and remote conditions are some of its major challenges.
Island Peak’s difficulty level is slightly more than Mera Peak’s. The peak is a bit trickier than Mera Peak in terms of technicality. Except that both of the climbs are more or less quite similar.
Island Peak in Nepal is also in the same category of trekking peaks as Mera Peak. A trekking peak is a right fit for new and inexperienced climbers. As it is a bit technical, you must have basic climbing skills. There are crevasses, narrow ridges, headwall, and icefall sections. Hence, using gears such as ladders, crampons, axes, ropes, etc., should not be a problem for you. There is no particular need for prior technical experience as well for climbing Island Peak.
High-elevation trekking, long trekking days, steep trails, rugged sections, extreme weather, and snowy sections are significant obstacles. A person with good basic climbing training and physical endurance is the right fit for Island Peak climb.
Twinning Island Peak vs Mera Peak, Island Peak is more technical and difficult. Island Peak has crevasses and snow headwall, where you must use technical climbing skills. At the same time, Mera Peak is a straightforward climb with no technical sections. In this case, Mera Peak is more accessible than Island Peak.
However, if you look at elevation, Mera Peak is higher. Island Peak Height is 6,160m, and Mera Peak Height is 6476m. You can see the clear difference of around 300m. Thus, in the case of elevation, Mera Peak is a bit superior.
Except for these two things, both peaks are more or less equivalent. They involve a similar type of trekking and climbing.
The experience and preparation level for Mera Peak and Island Peak is the same. You do not have to be an experienced climber. There is no need to learn hardcore mountaineering skills. If you do a few things right, you are more than ready for Mera or Island Peak climbing.
Firstly, you have to be in an excellent physical stage. A healthy body is a must. Then you need a good physical endurance level. You can only climb the hills in Island Peak and Mera Peak with a fine physique. Both climbs are high-altitude expeditions that go up to 6,467m. Your body should be in a position to climb all of that.
You must withstand High altitude walking, long trekking days, vertical climbs, icy trails, rocky terrains, and harsh weather. Hence, prepare your body to be ready for all these challenges. You also need to have a strong mentality. Plus, have some primary mountaineering training. Learn how to use snow ladders, ropes, axes, crampons, etc.
If you can do those things, you are suitable to be on the Mera Peak or Island Peak expedition. Best of Luck!
Mera Peak and Island Peak are trekking or non-technical peaks. With no severe technical sections, both peaks’ success rate is high, i.e., above 90%. Most of the time, the climbers reach the summits according to schedule. However, sometimes due to weather and emergencies, the tops are unobtainable. That rarely happens if you have prepared well, chosen the right time, and are with the right team of guides and groups.
Therefore, choose a trusted and experienced agency for Mera Peak and Island Peak Climbing for optimum success. You can consider our thriving history and quality of service.
Spring(March to May) and Fall(September to November) are the ideal times to plan Island and Mera Peak. Out of all four seasons, Spring and Autumn provide the best conditions for mountaineering in Nepal. These two seasons are also the most delicate times for trekking in Nepal.
Clear skies, stable weather, warm temperature, bright sunlight, low chances of rainfall or snowfall, and colorful landscapes are some of the perks of Autumn and Spring. You do not get these conditions in Winter and Monsoon seasons in Nepal. As you can guess, Monsoon is full of rainfall, and Winter is all about the cold and snowy months. Both seasons are pretty unpredictable and unstable.
Ultimately, Autumn and Spring have favorable conditions for climbing. Hence, they are the best times.
For Island and Mera Peak journeys, you will need some equipment other than trekking gear. You can’t climb a mountain normally with no gear. You will need some gear for the peak expeditions. You can have your equipment, or you can hire in Nepal. We will arrange things for you if you need them.
The list of climbing equipment is as below:
For detailed information about climbing equipment, you can reach us.
Mera and Island Peak are the two most popular trekking peaks in Nepal. Often, there is a massive debate on Mera Peak vs Island Peak topic. Climbers get confused about which one is best and which one to choose. However, these two utterly separate peak expeditions have several similar things.
First, both of the peaks lie in the Everest or Khumbu Region. It means both expeditions start from Lukla, the entrance to the region. Second, Mera Peak(6,461m) and Island Peak(6,189m) do not differ much in elevation. Mera Peak wins by some margin only.
The two peaks enlist in the same category of trekking peaks in Nepal. As per the classification by the Nepalese Mountaineering Association, the mountains in this category do not require technical expertise. Any beginner with basic climbing training and enough physical condition can achieve any climb.
Likewise, the peaks are not too far from each other. The mountains and landscape viewable on both of the journeys are pretty identical. Mt Everest, Lhotse, Ama Dablam, Cho Oyu, and Makalu are observable from the two peaks.
In the debate of Island Peak vs Mera Peak, both trekking peaks have much in common in these several ways. Yet, they both offer unique experiences. Island Peak is Island Peak, and Mera Peak is Mera Peak.
Mera Peak and Island Peak are the two best peak climbing options that you can consider if you looking for easy trekking peaks in Nepal. Both of the expeditions take place in the home sky-rocketing peaks.
Each peak climbing is equally worth doing. Yes, there are some similarities. But you will have invaluable experience and memories in any expedition you choose.
Fairly speaking, Island Peak climbing is the better option if you like to be adventurous. Likewise, Mera Peak climbing is for you if you want a bit of an easy journey. Nevertheless, whichever peak you choose, you will have a fantastic venture.
We hope your inner battle of Island Peak vs Mera Peak ends here. We hope you have already found your match with so much information from this blog.
Life Himalaya Trekking runs expeditions to both of the peaks and many others in Nepal. We could be your match if you are looking for the right agency. Let’s help you climb mountains in Nepal.