Question: Who is this programme for? Do I need to have a 'problem' to attend?
Answer: Programme of the Courage Journey offers an extraordinary and accelerated opportunity to test yourself and your being-ness on the edge. It is for those who want to know themselves better and deeper, and to know their inner drives. No, having a problem is absolutely not a need. We love you perfectly happy and satisfied - be ready to go beyond the trek experience. We do nonetheless expect that people joining the group will be respectful, curious, open, courageous and joining in the activities beyond the walk. Please also see the “Why Join” section of The Courage Journey site for further details.
Question: What is the registration process? Are there any eligibility criteria and prerequisites for this programme?
Answer: You will need to submit an application form online or if you prefer we can also send you an electronic copy to fill in. We will also need a signed waiver form, a completed medical form, and an electronic colour copy of your passport along with four passport size photos (for national park and trekking permits). When you express interest in joining us on the programme, we will send detailed registration guidance.
After registration to the programme you will meet the facilitators (either in person or via skype/G+) to have a conversation about your motivations and expectations. The criteria are good health and a responsible approach to yourself, others, and the programme.
- Participants must be between ages 18-65, and must reach their 18th birthday at the date of registration
- Participants must be medically fit and in a good physical and mental health. Please note that the programme is not recommended for pregnant women and those suffering chronic health and mental problems (epilepsy, heart problems, diabetes, asthma, psychological problems, physical disabilities and obesity). We also ask that all participants have a medical check-up with a qualified physician as part of the registration process
- Depending on your physical condition, regular physical exercise / daily walk (min 5 km) is recommended prior to The Courage Journey programme
- Personal travel, medical and emergency evacuation insurance, including for high altitude
- Commitment to the programme and group
- A valid passport with a minimum validity of 180 days from the last date of the journey
Question: Do I need to have any trekking experience? What level of fitness do I need to have?
Answer: You don’t need to have specific trekking experience; but you need to be healthy, fit and exercise regularly prior to The Courage Journey Himalayas for at least few months. Walking the Annapurna Circuit is a challenging physical activity - we will be walking about 12-20 km a day, in high altitude and steep slopes. You may also want to check your fitness through an ECG stress test.
Question: Do I need to undergo any medical tests? Why is this necessary?
Answer: We ask that you have a medical check-up before going (GP and dentist visit are sufficient, unless you your GP recommends that you undergo any further tests or examinations). The trek is demanding and in high altitude, where the atmospheric air is under low pressure and people may suffer from hypoxia (less oxygen). So you need to check that you have no prior conditions that may put you at risk. We will be walking in remote parts of Himalayas often with no immediate medical service - hence prevention is a must.
Question: I have been to high altitude recently and my stay was uneventful. Do I need a medical check-up?
Answer: Yes, we require that everyone undergoes a basic medical check-up by qualified physician. High altitude may show (or not) differently in different circumstances, so it is advised to have a medical exam every time before going to high altitude.
Question: How do I ensure I do not get altitude sickness and what support will be at hand? Will we have sufficient time to acclimatise during the journey?
Answer: The trek is structured to give us enough time to acclimatise and enable the body to adapt as we gradually ascend; there will also be a rest day at ~3,500 metres. We will be taking care that we acclimatise well and you may be advised to take acetazolamide / Diamox. Our experienced guides will also be able to advise on proper hydration and diet at high altitude.
Question: Do I need to bring any medicines with me?
Answer: We ask that everyone carries a basic medical kit with them at all times. We will provide guidance on what medications to bring after registration. If you take any regular medications we advise you to take sufficient stock to last the entire duration of the trip.
Question: In case of emergencies, what are the steps that will be taken by you?
Answer: Our Nepali guides are trained in first aid and, in case an emergency evacuation becomes necessary, you will be driven / flown back to Pokhara or Kathmandu with the necessary care and precautions required. Participants are responsible for and required to have their own medical and emergency evacuation insurance.
Question: Why a trek in the Himalayas? Have you considered other regions?
Answer: We have experience with this region and the Annapurna Circuit fits perfectly well with the aim and intention of The Courage Journey. We also organise other experential programmes outside of the Himalayas.
Question: What experience do you have with (Himalaya) trekking?
Answer: Everyone in our team has experience with trekking the Annapurna Circuit and other treks in the Himalayas and beyond. Our Nepalese guides have many years of experience guiding treks in the Himalayas region.
Question: How much walking will we do every day?
Answer: Out of the 16 days of the programme in Nepal we will be walking the Annapurna Circuit for 9 days. The distance we walk each day will vary, but we will walk between 12-20 km/ day. Please be aware that a km in the high altitude and steep slopes of the Himalayas is not the same as a km somewhere else!
Question: What is the programme? What activities will there be to help stimulate my personal development?
Answer: The programme of The Courage Journey Himalayas is carefully designed to stimulate and facilitate transformation to happen. We meet/ speak with every participant beforehand and thus answer all necessary questions, concerns and share a more detailed outline of the programme. Please also see the “Programme” section of The Courage Journey Himalayas site for further details. As this is The Courage Journey, there are daily practices and activities which will be revealed on the way - to give you an opportunity to experience authentic shifts.
Question: What happens after the programme? What is the follow-up?
Answer: All participants will be invited to a sharing platform for The Courage Journey, where we will share memories, experiences, photos, videos and through which we can stay in touch. Follow up meetings (group and individual) can be organised depending on the interest of individual members and participants of The Courage Journey.
Question: Will the programme be personalised and tailored to individual needs?
Answer: We will have an individual conversation with each participant about their motivations and expectations for the journey. The programme of the journey has been designed to both support each individual’s personal journey and to create a space where personal boundaries will be challenged – to enable higher awareness and more conscious and courageous choices in life.
Question: What experience do you have supporting personal development and coaching?
Answer: At Continuum Partners we have been helping senior executives, leaders and talented people expand their capabilities and impact in the context of change and transformation in a variety of forms since 2000. We have worked with hundreds of successful leaders, executives, boards and teams across all continents. Our clients appreciate our combination of profound practical experience, high level academic education and deep human touch and understanding. For detailed information please visit our website at www.continuum-partners.com or our profiles in the “Our Team” section.
Question: How big will the group be?
Answer: The group will have a maximum 6-8 participants. The programme is very individual focused and all participants will receive significant personal care and attention.
Question: Why 3-months for the whole programme? And why 16 days in Nepal? Could I come later / leave earlier?
Answer: Change and transformation take time to happen, in our experience 3 months gives sufficient time to start a change, have an intense transformative experience, and integrate it into everyday life. The trek itself has a certain length and cannot be walked considerably faster. Moreover The Courage Journey Himalayas is not a touristic trek, it is designed to allow the experience to settle and transcend. It is not possible to join earlier or later because we start the programme together as a group on the first day, and once we are on the trek there is no other way to travel but walk.
Question: What are the arrangements for communication en route?
Answer: Our team will be equipped with local phones (for connection and emergency). You will also be able to purchase local SIMs in the first few days in Kathmandu. Be aware that many parts of Himalaya region are not well covered with signal from foreign operators and hence are without internet or telephone connection.
Question: What will the accommodation be like? What conveniences will be provided? Will it be possible to have single room accommodation?
Answer: Accommodation in cities (Kathmandu and Pokhara) is in 3-4 star hotels on a twin-sharing basis. Single room accommodation available on request and at additional cost. When on the trek we will be staying in 2-3 bed rooms in local lodges/ tea houses. Local (often wooden) lodges are very simple, usually with only basic equipment and conveniences (sometimes this will involve an outdoor toilet adventure or a cold bucket shower), and quality of accommodation tends to vary from one place to another. However, rest assured that we will be providing the best of what each place has to offer and will be there to support you.
Question: What will the temperature and the weather be like?
Answer: The temperature on the trek varies from very warm (tropical) and some rainy weather, with lots of greenery at the start of journey (we will start walking at the time when rain season finishes); to high altitude environment above 4,000 meters with rocky, moon-like, rough landscape and cold nights and mornings.
Question: What clothes and equipment will I need? Can you provide recommendations on what and where to buy? Will you be providing any equipment?
Answer: We will provide more detailed guidance on the equipment and clothes that you will need after registration. We will be providing sleeping bags for the trek.
Question: Will there be time to go shopping in Kathmandu?
Answer: We will have two days in Kathmandu before leaving for the Annapurna Circuit. There will be common programme for some of the time, but we will also leave some free time in the afternoons for personal shopping, sight-seeing and relaxation. We can give you tips for where to stop and shop in Kathmandu, but would advise to bring the trip essentials already with you.
Question: How do I get a visa for Nepal?
Answer: Citizens of most countries can obtain Nepalese visa on arrival at the airport. You will require a valid passport (with minimum validity period of 180 days), two passport sized photographs, and money for the visa fee (15 days tourist visa costs $25 and 30 days $40).