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There are a number of options for short treks in the foothills to the north of Pokhara. Most of these variations will visit Ghandrung and Ghorepani. The former is a large, traditional Gurung village while Ghorepani is the settlement below the famed vantage point of Poon hill, one of the best spots from which to view the Himalaya range of central Nepal.
The various itineraries are all relatively easy and none reach an elevation high enough for AMS to be an issue. Generally between five and six trekking days are sufficient for any of the itinerary options. All enter the ACAP area so an entry permit is required. The permit should be obtained either in Kathmandu or Pokhara prior to starting the trek. Teahouses are plentiful through the foothills but there are a couple of alternative routes that will require the trekker to be self-sufficient if these particular trails are chosen.
The most commonly trekked of the foothill itineraries starts and ends at Naya Pul on the Baglung Highway (not to be confused with the Naya Pul on the Modi Khola beyond Landrung). Traveling by bus or taxi, the journey to Naya Pul takes about 1 to 2 hrs. Cross the Modi Khola at Naya Pul and trek through Birethanti to Syauli Bazaar following the river through cultivated fields and small villages. At Syauli Bazaar, the trail climbs steeply to the large Gurung village of Ghandrung (pronounced Ghandruk by the locals). Here there is a wide selection of teahouses and the community operates handicraft and cultural displays.
From Ghandrung, the main trail passes through Tadapani to the pass at Ghorepani. Above the hill is Poon Hill, a climb of around 300m. The fabulous panoramic view of mountains makes the steep climb at dawn worth the trouble. Some take in the evening view by climbing at dusk. Either way, the views of Dhaulagiri, the Annapurnas and, in the distance, the Manaslu range are astounding.
From Ghorepani there are three choices. The most commonly taken route drops down to the villages of Ulleri and Tirkedhunga to Birethanti, the original starting point of the trek. There is a steep trail and can be quite crowded during peak season. It passes through dense stands of oak and rhododendron until Ulleri is reached after which the landscape is mostly cultivated fields.