Dudh Kosi River (river of Mt. Everest) Expedition 2007

River Expedition on the Steepest Himalayan River Dudh Kosi in October 2007.

The aim of the expedition was to make as complete descent of Dudh Kosi River as possible.
In the frame of the expedition the team will make trek to Kalapattar where they will put flags of the countries-participants (Russia, Nepal, New Zeeland).

Expedition Team3rd October: Russian team of participants arrived to Nepal for Dudh Kosi River Expedition. In Kathmandu International Airport they were met by team of expedition organizer “WhiteWater Nepal Pvt. Ltd.”, expedition team member – professional kayaker Shane Quinlivan (New Zeeland) and consular of Russian Federation in Nepal Sergey Nedelko.

6th October: Expedition Team flew to Lukla (2840m.)
From Lukla the team started Everest Base Camp+Kalapathar trek. In Lukla they were met by Tak Man Rai and 10 porters. During the trekking the team looked Dudh kosi river from every point whenever possible to see it and tried to get close to the river in gorges sections for detail scouting and consideration of possible ways to run these sections. Kayakers of the expedition Shane Quinlivan (New Zeeland) and Vasily Chesnokov (Russia) were main attraction on the trail as surprising local people and porters as they were carrying kayaks by themselves all the way up. This is the spirit of a real expedition!

7th October: The team reached Namche Bazar (3440m.).
Acclimatization day: team members devided into 3 groups in order to study and research the gorge section below Namche Bazar from different points. After scouting the river gorge the team would make a decision about possible ways to run it if any.

8th October: The Team scouting 8 km. long River Gorge below Namche Bazzar.
(News provided by Evgeny Kovalevsky from the expedition):
Waterfall1st group was scouting final part of the gorge and possible ways out of the gorge. Making their way through intense jungles they spent 7 hours scouting the river section, making photo and video of the gorge and as a result members of 1st group managed to scout 3km. of final section of the gorge. Summary of scouting: the rapids of the section are very difficult and complex but this section of the river is possible to run.

2nd group went from Namche Bazar up to the middle part of river canyon. Descending to the river they sow 20 meter high and wide waterfall, down part of which is not seen from the height and to get down to the river for scouting big waterfall was not possible. The group managed to get down to the river only with a help of special climbing equipment and 100 meters of rope. Last 20 meter descent to the river is totally vertical walls. The Dudh Kosi gorge at this point turns in a very narrow one (5 meter wide max.). Summery of scouting: 20 meter high waterfall is not possible to run, another smaller waterfall is clearly seen and theoretically possible to run, the gorge has many turnings and the river at this section is not seen from the bank. On the way up from the middle part of the gorge the group sow upper section with some waterfall complex.

River View3rd group was scouting the upper section of the gorge from the upper bridge across the river. Summery: the Dudh Kosi at this part is very- very steep; the water current is very-very fast, rapids are extremely complex and technical, some continuous waterfall sections, 15 meter high waterfall which is theoretically possible to run by kayakers.

Common summery of expedition members about Dudh Kosi Gorge (Below Namche Bazar):
The question about descending Dudh Kosi river gorge (below Namche Bazar) was decided to keep open for now due to extreme difficulty of the section and the decision on this gorge will be taken by the team when the upper part of the Dudh Kosi completed.

9th October: The expedition reached Tengboche Monastery (3860m.). Scouting of the Gorge.
On the way to Tengboche the team could see unranable waterfall complex below Namche Bazar. Scouting of the gorge below Tengboche.

10th October: The expedition is on the way to Pheriche (4240m.)
Results of scouting of Namche Bazar Gorge and Tengboche Gorge: some parts of canyons considered by expedition team as runable, some are theoretically possible to run and some not possible even theoretically. The decision was taken by the expedition team: to run sections which considered runable or theoretically runabale. The team was facing problems with porters but our Guide Tak Man Rai was co-ordinating and arranging supporting part of the expedition. Thanks a lot for Tak Man! Pheriche will be some sort of base camp for the expedition as the expedition will leave lots of river expedition equipment here while they will make their way to Everest Base Camp and Kala Pattar.

11th October:
News from the Expedition:
Way to EBCKayakers of the Expedition Team reached Tsholo Lake (Chola) 4555 - the source of Dudh Kosi River!
Next couple of days the expedition team spent researching the area, climbing Kala Pattar (5545m.), the team put flags of the countries - participants of Dudh Kosi River Expedition (Russia-Nepal-New Zeeland).

News from Kathmandu "WhiteWater Nepal Pvt. Ltd.":
Today finally we managed to get Official Government Permit for Our Dudh Kosi River Expedition!
Dudh Kosi river is officially open for runnnig only from Jorsale (2740m).
"WhiteWater Nepal Pvt. Ltd." recieved An Official Government Permit for the River Expedition from Gorak Shep 5140m. to Jorsale 2740m.

Dudhkosi Expedition Map

12th October: The team reached Lobuche (4910m.)

13th October: Kalapathar
The expedition team reached Kala Pattar and enjoyed amazing views of Mt. Everest. From here the expedition team and support team make their way down to Pheriche and prepare expedition water crafts for Dudh Kosi River.

14th October: Tsholo Lake (Chola) 4555 - the source of Dudh Kosi River, paddling down the Chola Khola.
(News provided by Evgeny Kovalevsky from the expedition):
Chola LakeToday is a very important day for our team as this is the starting point of Dudh Kosi river Expedition! We started river expedition from the legendary Chola (Tsholo) Lake as high as 4555m. (N 27 55 15, 84 E 86 47 39, 26.). The Lake is amazing! The water is freezing cold as lake is located on the glacier but kayakers of the expedition starting from here. This is the first day on the water! After paddling on the lake kayakers of the expedition were carrying their kayaks for 30 min. trying to find source of the river around the lake from where river expedition on the land of highest mountains can take its start. Suddenly they sow small stream of water making its way right from under the stones! This small stream is Chola Khola – one of the sources of Dudh Kosi River (the steepest Himalayan River and one of the highest rivers on the planet). That is amazing how water making its way from under huge stones! The symbolic starting point of the expedition is found – river expedition begins! Kayakers start from here and other expedition members and water crafts (bublick, double catamaran) wait in Pheriche as this stream is not enough for big crafts to start. Shane Quinlivan – kayaker of the expedition (professional paddler from New Zeeland) when he sow the stream for the first time was repeating the Kayakingonly word “AMAZING!” Shane together with Vasily Chesnokov (probably the first Siberian kayaker paddling on such high altitudes) put kayaks on the water and gave a start! Huge amount of stones and shallow water made it a difficult task to do. But the most difficult thing is a real lack of the oxygen on such heights – 20% of the norm. It took an hour for these high altitude kayakers to paddle 3 km. up to the place called Pheriche where the rest of the team was waiting for them. From Pheriche Russian invention - water craft bublick and cataraft with other expedition members will join Dudh Kosi river expedition in few days.

15th October: Rest day in Pheriche (4240m.).
ShaneThe day spent by the team in final preparation as the team starts tomorrow from Pheriche by river.

16th October: The team started rafting down from Pheriche.
The Day on Dudh Kosi River!
(Kayak and Double Cataraft)
Kayaker Shane Quinlivan (New Zeeland) started first, followed by double cataraft. All team members experience how difficult is paddling on such an altitude (4200m) with lack of oxygen and in such extreme nearly freezing cold! To add more to this: the Dudh Kosi in Upper section is an unbelievably steep one with a gradient of around 90m\km with lots of stones and shallow water! Even the team scouted the section the day before they looked it through again before running.

ShaneAs soon as the team managed to get out of the river canyon to the nearest village Soymare at 4020m. (N 27 52 038, Е 086 48 259) for overnight stay - a heavy snowfall started!Paddling

Tomorrow the expedition team will continue exploring the river despite of weather conditions....Extremely difficult canyon section of Dudh Kosi river below Pangboche (3930m.) is target for tomorrow......3 km. of the river will take the whole day!

17th October: The Day on Dudh Kosi River.
News of the expedition will be updated without exact reference to dates but with connections to places as the expedition is entering gorge sections and news may come with a delay notice.

From the diary of expedition leader Evgeny Kovalevsky:
“…… The section which we did today hardly can be described as river for rafting…huge amount of stones, waterfalls, small falls, rocks…….We faced some critical situations when cata was pushed by powerful current on the rocks which were blocking the only line of the river…. “

Upper Dudh Kosi completed!
Just now we received info from the expedition that they completed upper Dudh Kosi (up to the confluence with Imju Khola). Jumped some waterfalls… Expedition team in on the way to Namche Bazar.
Kayak WaterfallDuring the whole day yesterday the team manged to run only 1km. of the river starting from the confluence of Dudh Kosi and Bhote Kosi. The section is non stop cascade of class 5+ rapids……Finished the expedition day before 5 meter high waterfall. The team is planning to start the next with this waterfall….

The Expedition is below Namche Bazar:
After Namche Bazar river becomes more powerful and complex. It took 2 days for the expedition team to complete 4 km. of Dudh Kosi Gorge below Namche Bazar. Average grade of the obstacles is very high….. Sections of gradient rapids often end with waterfalls of over 5-6 meters…

Middle part of the Dudh Kosi completed!
Expedition kayaker Shane jumped tough 2 meter high waterfall. The section consist of cascades of complex rapids. There was extremely complex rapid section near village Ghat (difficult line, gradient current, huge drops).
Time of Bublick action started! Bublick passed huge rapids and jumped waterfalls. River action finished for today before crazy Lukla Gorge (waterfall cascades with height range from 8 to 25 meters). Lukla Gorge is unrunable in its middle part but expedition team will make an attamp to run ending section of the Gorge.

28th October:
BublickNews from the expedition:
The Expedition team is scouting last gorges. The scouting will make it clear if the team tries descending these parts of the Dudh Kosi.
Summery of the scouting: The team will run the gorges!

30th October:
News from the Expedition:
The team took the decision to start the gorge below Jubing from tomorrow. The crafts which will be used for the gorge: Bublick and 2 kayaks.

31st October:
News from the Expedition:
The team run couple of extremely difficult rapids of the river gorge below Jubing. In one of such rapids Expedition member, Russian kayaker Vasily Chesnokov, was surfing in the massive hall for quite a while, his kayak was stuck between 2 rocks under the water, finally Vasya took a decision to open the skirt……he passed 2 next big rapids and after that managed to get to the bank….kayak was pushed by powerful river current down the gorge (till now it has not been found…..)
The team continued exploring the river by special craft bublick till it reached unrunable obstacle blocking the river…..The only way out was to carry the huge bublick by the bank: 600 m. up to the path and after 200 meters down to the river again…. There are massive vertical walls in canyon which was possible to climb only with a help of special climbing equipment….

Cata3rd November 2007:
News from the expedition:
The team managed to run extremely difficult river gorge below Jubing. 10 km of river took 6 days of exploration. The team reached village Tari from where another canyon starts. The leader of the expedition Evgeny Kovalevsky run this canyon in 2003 but at that time there was not such difficult obstacles…this canoyon of the Dudh Kosi has been changed a lot since that! That happened probably due to landslides and monsoons and as a result: new and difficult river obstacles have appeared in the canyon and the team considers some of them even more difficult than in previous canyon.

4th November 2007:
News from the expedition:
The Team successfully run 10 km. river canyon below Tari with couple of over 5meter high waterfalls. It was difficult to make pictures and videos from the banks as banks are totally vertical walls! The gorge was run by special Russian water craft bublick. This canyon is probably the last one on this expedition as Dudh Kosi gorge slowly turns into valley. Nevertheless the river at this point is still very technical and gradient with lots of rapids……There are 60 km. of river running ahead till the ending point of the expedition.

Cata11th November 2007:
News from Kathmandu:
Our expedition team just arrived to Kathmandu! All are healthy and happy!!!!
Dudh Kosi River Expedition 2007 is successfully completed!!!!!
Congratulations to all our team members!!!! You did a great thing of a lifetime!!!!




Dudh Kosi River Expedition:
During Autumn 2009 Our Company will run another Expedition on Dudh Kosi River (upper and middle section).