Kafuche Glacier, located in the northeastern part of Kaski, which is claimed to be the lowest in the world, has become a popular tourist destination in recent years.
The area has started gaining popularity after the Trekking Agencies Association of Nepal (TAN) Western Regional Association Pokhara, in cooperation with The Marketing Heaven, formally promoted the trekking route to the lake in December 2074 BS all over social platforms.
Dhan Gurung (Myla), director of Namaste Guest House in Sikles, said that the number of Nepalis wanting to go to Kafuche Glacier has skyrocketed since the lake started to be publicized. He feels that such arrivals have increased after news and pictures in the media and videos related to Kafuche Glacier started being posted on YouTube.
However, the number of tourists visiting the lake has not been kept. Locals said that the trekking route to Kafuche Glacier was not easy. He suggested that government and non-government organizations related to tourism including TAN and ECAP should take initiative to improve the road. The lake is located at an altitude of 2450 meters above sea level. According to Deepak Raj Adhikari, the outgoing chairman of Tan, the lake and the route were promoted at that time as the lake has immense potential for tourism. This route has been promoted while the officer is in charge of Tan.
Kafuche Glacier can be reached after a week’s journey from Armala, Antighar Mauja, Thak, Tara Hill, Sikles and Hugu by starting the trek from the Deep of Pokhara Metropolitan City. But those who have less time for long trekking have started to walk directly from the motor road to Sikles. From Sikles one can reach Hugu Goth in seven hours and then the lake in one hour.
Tan has even prepared a map including the villages, water sources, waterfalls and waterfalls along the footpath. Most of the trekking route falls within the Annapurna Conservation Area. Observing the Gurung culture, the green forest, the view of the long mountain range, the coats, the bird watching, the observation of various wild animals, the lakes in the lowlands and the avalanches that come there are the features of this route. Kafuche Glacier
The Pokhara Western Association has searched for the trail on the occasion of the Silver Jubilee with the support of ECAP and Madi village and the promotion of Nepal Tourism Board. Entrepreneurs have said that there is a plan to extend this post route based on camping and homestay in 10 days from Hugu in Madi village of Kaski to Manang district through Namun Pass via Kori, Thurju and Dudhpokhari.
In recent years, foreign tourists have been able to reach the Kafuche Lake, which some villagers call the Virgin Ice Lake. Locals have also pointed out the need for road maintenance from Kaski’s Thak to Tara Hill section and from Sikles to Kafuche Lake section.
According to Bikas Gurung, a businessman from Thak village, the name of the lake, which is also called Khufuche in Gurung dialect, means ‘Khu’ means snow, ‘Fu’ means falling and ‘Che’ means flat. This lake is also the main reservoir of Madi river. Ram Chandra Adhikari, a member of the then Footpath Search Team, said that the Kafuche Glacier route was developed as an alternative route after the existing footpaths started getting affected by the road.
The Madi Municipality of Kaski has started the promotion of Kafuche Glacier within the municipality. Kafuche Glacier, located at Madi-1 at an altitude of 2,450 meters above sea level, is claimed to be the lowest lake in the world. The village municipality has put forward the plan with the objective of developing the beautiful lake as a tourist destination by promoting it.
It is said that the avalanche coming from between the second and fourth mountains of Annapurna melted and formed a lake. The blue water of the lake spread over an area of 1,200 square meters has attracted a lot of domestic tourists in recent times.
In the local Gurung language, ‘K’ means a lot of snow, ‘Fu’ melts and ‘Che’ is a smooth lake, so the lake formed by melting snow is called ‘Kafuche Glacier’. According to the locals, the lake has melted due to climate change even though it is possible to move from the place where there was a lot of snow till a decade and a half ago.
Stating that infrastructures including roads will be constructed to reach Himatal, which can be a major destination for domestic and foreign tourists, village chief Bed Bahadur Gurung (Shyam) said, “We have considered tourism as the main basis of prosperity of the municipality.” Accordingly, we will make the world’s lowest altitude lake a destination for internal and external tourists through publicity. ”
The village municipality is going to prepare a detailed project report (DPR) for the maintenance of the road from Sikles to Himatal this year. As the first road infrastructure is indispensable for the tourists to reach the destination easily, the village municipality has a plan to build a comfortable footpath up to the lake. Kafuche Glacier , located 51 km from Pokhara, is a five-hour walk from the tourist village of Sikles.
According to Chief Gurung, the 39th meeting of the village executive has been convened for the first time recently for the promotion of the lake. The village municipality is going to take initiative to get the lake listed in the Ramsar list as it is the only lake in the district and it is also in a low place. The village municipality has taken tourism as the main basis of prosperity.
Village government spokesperson Lal Bahadur Gurung said that the Gandaki state government had allocated Rs. 2.5 million for the preparation of DPR last year for the systematic development of natural resources including Kafuche Glacier . He clarified that the integrated development program of the lake will be taken forward with the support of the federal and state governments after the completion of the DPR as it is in the final stage
Where is Kafuche Glacier ?