3 - 4
FATMAP difficulty grade
The hike up to Poon Hill from Ghorepani takes about an hour and you should aim to arrive on top at dawn.
As you will no doubt have calculated, this means getting up very early in order to ingest some food and fluids as well as leaving an hour of darkness to do the hike.
No matter how awful getting up in the middle of the night may feel, it is certainly a small price to pay for the views you will see today. Hike west on a well marked trail out of Ghorepani and keep your head down as you plod up for the next 45 minutes - 1 hour.
Provided you’ve got your timing right you should be on the grassy summit of Poon Hill as the first rays of sun hit (amongst many peaks) the 8000 metre behemoth Dhaulagiri.
Those first moments of daylight create a stunning pink light on the distant peaks to which photos rarely do justice.
Soak it in. As the sun rises the pink light gives way to normal daylight conditions, at which point you can head down to Ghorepani safe in the knowledge that you’ve seen one of the most famous sights in the Himalayas.
Grab a second breakfast and then head east on an undulating forest path.
Occasionally some of bigger peaks around here such as Machhapuchhre become visible but consider today a day in the forest with some occasional mountain views rather than a “proper” Himalayan trekking day.
The forests are beautifully peaceful and hiking through them will give you plenty of time to reminisce about your experience on Poon Hill in the morning.
Keep following the trail to the village of Tadapani, which lies just west of the main valley up to the Annapurna Sanctuary.