The good thing about discovering you are wrong about something is that you get a chance for a new start. Prior to my first visit to Sikkim in October 2004, my impression was that it was difficult and costly to climb there. Having now made six visits to the former Himalayan Kingdom in northeast India, I can say with certainty that this need not be the case.
However, despite a long history of mountain exploration, Sikkim lacks a reliable, coherent and up to date record of first ascents. Climbs have been made but not clearly recorded, some ascents have been recorded but may not have been climbed, and some summits have been climbed but not recorded for security reasons. I have even had the strange experience of reading in a Sikkim newspaper about a ‘first’ ascent of a mountain that I had already climbed myself (and that as a third ascent). Given this unusual and somewhat confusing background this article is not an attempt to get the historical record clear and correct, but is a highlight of selected achievements and some of the excellent climbing opportunities that exist in Sikkim (and with apologies in advance for any errors and omissions, for which I will be pleased to be made aware).
My first view of the mountains of Sikkim was in the spring of 2004 during an ascent of Chomolhari on the Tibet-Bhutan border with my wife Julie-Ann Clyma. With the remarkable backdrop of Kangchenjunga, the Sikkim-Tibet border peaks looked interesting and tantalisingly accessible from the Tibetan plateau.
Since that first view, I have discovered that Sikkim has many rock walls, winter icefalls in high forests and mountain valleys, many interesting unclimbed 5000 m and some unclimbed 6000 m peaks, a clutch of virgin 7000 m peaks, and the world’s longest unclimbed high altitude ridge. A very welcome recent addition is State Government regulations for ‘Alpine Peaks’ that allow small teams to easily obtain permission in Sikkim and at relatively modest cost. We had an input into this improvement of access for climbing, which is welcome evidence of a State Government that is open-minded and committed to sustainable development in mountain regions. This example was mentioned as a model of good practice at an annual congress of the Adventure Tour Operators Association of India (ATOAI) held on 16-18 January 2009 in Dehradun, Uttarakhand.
Back in the mist - a ‘golden age’ for alpine-style climbing
The relative ease of crossing passes between Sikkim and Tibet are strategically important. Hence, they became the eastern gateway to the Tibetan plateau and the route taken by Francis Younghusband for the historic ‘Lhasa Mission’ of 1904 and all the early expeditions to the north side of Everest.
Later, during the period of the Sino-Indian border conflicts, these passes closed and became major points of tension between India and China. Hence, both sides of the border became heavily militarised. The military presence remains on the border; however, the Nathu la (4310 m), one of the main mountain passes between Sikkim and Tibet, is now open for limited local trade and may eventually open for tourism.
On the western side of this compact and diverse State is the world’s third highest mountain. In two remarkable journeys in 1848 and 1849, the legendary naturalist Sir Joseph Hooker climbed several 5000 m peaks, attempted some 6000 m peaks, and almost completed a circuit of Kangchenjunga. John Claude White, the Political Officer to Sikkim and later Bhutan (1887-1908), travelled widely. White was a very able administrator and a farsighted conservationist. He introduced protected status to vast areas of Himalayan forest, and created a remarkable personal collection of photographs of his travels on the northeast frontier and in Tibet. In 1899 Douglas Freshfield’s famous expedition around Kangchenjunga included Vittorio Sella, who took some inspirational photographs, including the striking peak of Siniolchu, which became vaunted as the most beautiful mountain in the world.
The most prolific early climber was Dr Alexander Kellas, who made several visits to Sikkim in the period 1907-21. He climbed many peaks, mostly with local companions, and in 1910 made ten ascents including Chomoyummo (6829 m) and Pauhunri (7128 m). Kellas wrote several important papers on the effects of altitude, but sadly, very little about his extensive climbing experiences. Kellas wondered if Everest could be climbed without supplementary oxygen, and because of his experience and knowledge, he was selected as the leader of the first Everest expedition in 1921. Tragically, after crossing from Sikkim to the Tibetan plateau he became seriously unwell and died of a heart attack. He was buried at Kampa Dzong looking towards the mountains of north Sikkim.
Marco Pallis, Freddy Spencer Chapman, Paul Bauer, G.O. Dyrenfurth, c.R. Cook, John Hunt, and Eric Shipton were all among the exploratory climbers of what could be called the ‘golden age’ of mountain exploration in Sikkim. This period started with Hooker in 1848, and was arguably at its zenith in the 1930’s on the peaks around the Zemu glacier in northwest Sikkim. Continuing the lightweight alpine-style approach that had been established, in 1936 Bauer, Adi Göttner, Karl Wien and Günther Hep made the first ascent of Siniolchu (6887 m) and Simvo (6812 m). This ‘golden age’ of alpine-style perhaps ended in 1939 with the ascents of Tent Peak (7365 m) and Nepal Peak (7180 m) by the Swiss-German party of E. Grob, H. Paidar and L. Schmaderer. When Himalayan mountaineering resumed after the interruption of the Second World War the spotlight was on a different style of mountaineering and the 8000 m peaks. In the case of Kangchenjunga, the focus moved to the Nepal side of the mountain.
Above the mists - a new milestone for alpine-style
Unlike some of Asia’s highest mountains, Kangchenjunga is easily visible from the lowlands and populated areas. It is an amazing sight from hill towns like Pelling and Darjeeling. Given its dominant shape and size, and magnificent appearance in early morning and evening light, it is hardly surprising that it has long been an object of worship and an inspiration to climbers. The remarkable first ascent in 1955 was from the Nepal side of the mountain. However, the Sikkim side had already seen two determined attempts on the northeast spur in 1929 and ’31 by strong groups led by Paul Bauer. This dangerous and difficult route was eventually completed in 1977 by an Indian Army expedition led by the redoubtable Col Narinder (‘Bull’) Kumar, which was a major achievement, and only the second expedition to succeed in climbing Kangchenjunga.
The ongoing history of climbing on Kangchenjunga has mostly been on the Nepal side of the mountain. This includes the remarkable alpine-style ascent of Kangchenjunga’s south summit by the south ridge (which marks the border between Nepal and Sikkim), which was climbed in 1991 by Andrej Stremfelj and Marko Prezelj. This climb is a major milestone that demonstrates that even the hardest and highest peaks in the world can be climbed in alpine-style.
In 1991 the State Government of Sikkim classified the main, south and west summits of Kangchenjunga as sacred, and banned the scaling of the sacred peaks. This has been taken to mean that all climbing attempts on the Sikkim side of Kangchenjunga are prohibited. However, it may be possible to obtain permission from the Sikkim authorities to climb Kangchenjunga if the sacred peak restriction is respected, and the summits remained untrodden. If so, this would open up the possibility of a traverse of Kangchenjunga’s formidable unclimbed east-southeast ridge, which includes Zemu Peak (7780 m). This is, without doubt, one of the major high altitude mountaineering challenges.
In the West - cowboy country
South along the border from Kangchenjunga is Talung (7349 m) and at least three 7000 m summits in the Kabru group. In 1883 William Woodman Graham made some remarkable ascents in the Himalaya with Joseph Imboden, Emil Boss and Ulrich Kauffmann, all experienced guides from Switzerland. Graham reported an ascent of Kabru, but later this claim was questioned. Graham had criticised the accuracy of the Himalayan maps, and although some felt his Kabru claim was valid (and if so, this would have been the first ascent of a 7000 m peak) others felt he must have been on another mountain. From his climbs in the Alps and Himalaya Graham was a strong mountaineer, as were his companions. But it is hard to fit some of what he reported around the topography of the mountains (see Jopuno below). Apparently Graham went to America and became a cowboy.
Kabru North (7338 m) was climbed in 1935 (c.R. Cooke and G. Schoberth) and Talung from its Nepal side in 1964 (F. Lindner and T Nindra). Kabru Dome (6600 m) and the North and South summits of Kabru are classified as sacred. However, this has not prevented recent ascents by Indian and foreign groups (although it is not clear if the groups concerned had the permission of the authorities in Sikkim).
Further south again is Rathong (6679 m) and Kokthang (6147 m) which offer interesting opportunities for alpine-style first ascents (and which Sagar Rai, Julie-Ann and I explored in autumn 2006 and climbed some adjacent 5000 m summits). According to the Alpine Club’s on-line Himalayan Index, Kokthang has been climbed twice (via the SW face in 1982 and via the NE face and N ridge in 1991), and Rathong has had two ascents (in 1964 and 1987 via the West Rathong glacier and icefall).
Kokthang has a long corniced summit ridge and, according to the great chronicler of Himalayan ascents Harish Kapadia, ’the true high point, lying at the northernmost end, remains to be climbed.’ In 2006, having climbed quite a bit of new ground, we made some progress on the northwest-north ridge of Kokthang, but deep cold snow and unstable cornices stopped us. This route would probably be a more reasonable undertaking in the pre-monsoon spring period.
The steep mixed south face of Rathong looks interesting, but has some serac hazards, and the southeast ridge is a technical challenge Julie-Ann and I tried in 2006, but ran out of weather and time. In November 2008, I returned with Owen Samuel for a second attempt. We reached around 6300 m, but were deterred from continuing along the exposed crest of the ridge by very strong winds and low temperatures.
Near the snout of the Rathong glacier is the mountain base camp for the Himalayan Mountaineering Institute in Darjeeling. Groups from HMI Darjeeling train on the glaciers and peaks thereabouts, including the technical Frey Peak (5830 m) which has had numerous ascents with the aid of fixed ropes. This is one of the peaks designated by the Government of Sikkim as an Alpine Peak, and on which other technical climbs would be possible. In 2004 two Spanish climbers (Alain Anders and Garo Azuke) were active in this area and climbed two technical routes on peaks they referred to as Tieng Kg (c. 6000 m) and Phori (5837 m).1
Running parallel and to the east of the above peaks is the route of Sikkim’s most popular trek: a five-day journey from the historic village of Yuksom to the Guicha la (Heaven’s Gate). The other well-known trek in Sikkim is to ‘Green Lake’ on the Zemu glacier in northwest Sikkim. Although not actually green or much of a lake, the views of glaciers and high peaks are spectacular. Of historical note in this area are the journeys of Kekoo Naoroji in 1958. Naoroji, a former president of the Himalayan Club, made an excellent photographic record of his pioneering lightweight treks. Today, there is the enticing challenge of linking the Guicha la and Green Lake treks in a continuous journey via the Zemu Gap, which would be an interesting and adventurous journey around the southeast flank of Kangchenjunga. The crossing of the Zemu Gap developed some notoriety after a visit in 1938 by W.H. Tilman, and was attempted as a south to north crossing in spring 2008 by Adrian O’Connor, Colin Knowles and Jerzy Wieczorek. In March 2011, Anindya Mukherjee,2 Thondup Sherpa and eight young Lepchas made a remarkable exploratory journey from Mangan to the Talung glacier, thus crossing a major ‘blank’ on the map of Sikkim.
Back to the west, as you rise above the dense forests above Yuksom and head towards the Guicha la, you get excellent views of Kangchenjunga, and to the east a group of fine looking alpine-scale peaks. The first of real note is the attractive looking Narsing (5825 m, first ascent Kellas, 1921) which is another sacred peak. North again is a technical looking unnamed peak, then Lamalamani (c. 5700 m), Jopuno (5936 m, first ascent uncertain, see below) and Tingchenkhang (6010 m, first ascent Indo-British Army expedition 1998); the latter two being Alpine Peaks, for which it is easy to obtain permission.
W. W. Graham described an ascent of ‘Jubonu’ in 1883 as ‘incomparably the hardest ascent we had in the Himalaya, owing to the great steepness of the glacier work’ and mentioned the ‘glacier crowned with steep rocks which formed the edge of a noble amphitheatre formed by Jubonu and Nursingh’ (which suggests an approach from the south). Having explored around Jopuno, and climbed a new route on the southwest face (with Julie-Ann Clyma and Hugh Sheehan, November 2009) I find it hard to fit Graham’s description to the features on the mountain. Hence, it may be that what Graham described as Jubonu is not Jopuno. In April 2002 members of the Sikkim Amateur Mountaineering Association made a pioneering ascent of the mountain (which they believed at the time to be the first ascent), but they had no camera and details of their route are unclear. No doubt they reached a summit of Jopuno, but which one is uncertain. Then in spring 2008 an American party of Josh Smith, Jason Halladay, Sam Gardner and Sarah Demay climbed the elegant and technical west ridge. Smith and Halladay reached the summit in bad weather, which they recorded with photographs. But on our climb in November 2009, upon reaching the photographed summit (also in poor visibility), I felt certain that the highest point of the mountain was still some way further along the ridge to the southeast (and which Smith and Halladay may well have reached). Subsequently, a party led by Geoff Cohen tried the west ridge in spring 2010, but decided to retreat at the band of black rock that caps the ridge (they had already climbed a new route on Lamalamani). So, it may be that the summit of Jopuno was climbed in 1883, or it may be that the highest point of the mountain is yet to be reached.
In spring 2005, with Sagar Rai and Kunzang Bhutia (friends in the Sikkim Amateur Mountaineering Association who had climbed on Jopuno in 2002) we made the first ascent of the north summit of Lamalamani, then made the 3rd ascent (and first alpine-style ascent) of Tingchenkhang (6010 m). In October 2009, tragedy struck a team from Chakram Hikers when descending from the summit. The party fell from the summit ridge with fatal consequences for Mangesh Deshpande and Sekar Sadashivan. A year later, another team of Chakram Hikers led by Rajesh Gadgil made a noble attempt to recover the bodies, but sadly without success. The incident highlights the absence of rescue facilities across the Himalaya, which is something that could be improved without excessive costs. However, these peaks in West Sikkim offer very good alpine-style ascents of around AD to D standard, and are destined to become classic climbs of the Eastern Himalaya.
Further north again is the dramatic peak of Pandim (6691 m), which attracted the attention of the early explorers, and more recently has had some confusingly reported attempts. Pandim has a superb looking technical west ridge, but is another sacred summit. It is actually a group of summits, so perhaps in the future it may be possible to climb one of the lower peaks.
In West Sikkim, as in other areas of Sikkim, Indian mountaineers have been very active. Instructors from the mountaineering institutes, military groups, and members of the Himalayan Club and Sikkim Amateur Mountaineering Association have all made important climbs. Some ascents have been accurately documented in the Himalayan Journal and elsewhere, others less well recorded, and some not recorded for security reasons. If Sikkim ever has a definitive record of climbs like the Alps, it will have been the outcome of some very diligent research.
Along the border, North and East
North of Kangchenjunga is Jongsang (7459 m, first ascent by its north ridge in 1930 by G.O. Dyrenfurth’s international expedition to Kangchenjunga), which is at the junction of the borders between Nepal, Tibet and Sikkim. The Sikkim-Tibet border runs to the east following the watershed over high peaks and passes to Pauhunri (7125 m, first ascent in 1910 by Kellas) in Sikkim’s northeast corner. Just south of Pauhunri are two virgin 7000 m summits, then a ridge of unnamed 6000 m summits. Further south again, the peaks become lower and lead to the historic passes of Nathu la (4310 m, between Gangtok and Yatung in Tibet) and Jelep la (4374 m, between Kalimpong and Yatung).
Permission to access the peaks and passes along the Sikkim-Tibet border has been extremely limited since the start of the Sino-Indian border conflict of 1962. However, you can pick almost any mountain along the Sikkim-Tibet border and find an interesting climbing objective. In September 2004, a strong team organised by the Indian Mountaineering Foundation (IMF) in New Delhi attempted the border peak of Chomoyummo (6829 m). The leader was the highly respected and hugely experienced Dr P.M. Das, a vice president of the IMF, and included experienced instructors from the Sonam Gyatso Mountaineering Institute in Gangtok. The attempt ended in tragedy when Das and four others were killed in an avalanche. In autumn 2009 an Alpine Club party led by Jeremy Windsor had the objective of the first ascent of Kellas Peak (6680 m). Initially there was confusion about which mountain was Kellas Peak. The team reached Kellas col (6380 m), a snow saddle on the border ridge first reached by Alexander Kellas during one of his unsuccessful attempts to climb Jongsang. Avalanche conditions and difficult crevasses prevented an attempt on Kellas Peak itself.
At some stage access to the peaks on the Sikkim-Tibet border will become easier, which could launch a new ‘golden age’ of first ascents and new routes in this part of the Himalaya. Meanwhile, just away from the border is a ring of peaks that are easier to access, and offer very interesting climbing potential from the valleys of Lachung and Lachen.
Within the border
During the Second World War British climbers were able to take leave in the region of Lachung and Lachen, and members of the Himalayan Club including Trevor Braham explored the area. It is a fascinating journey up from the steep forested slopes of the Lachung valley, to reach open plains typical of the Tibetan plateau around Yume Samdong (4624 m), and then cross the Sebu la (5352 m) down to the open part of the Lachen valley, to then descend back south to steep valleys and forests. Such was the interest in making this journey that the Himalayan Club built huts either side of the Sebu la (both of which are now in ruins).
After 1962, apart from military expeditions, this area was closed. Then in 1976 Harish Kapadia and Zerksis Boga obtained permission to do the Green Lake-Thieu la-Lugnak la- Sebu la trek. Twenty years later in 1996, an expedition led by Doug Scott (including Lindsay Griffin, Julian Freeman-Attwood, Skip Novak, Mark Bowen, Paul Crowther, Michael Clark, Col Balwant Sandhu and Suman Dubey) obtained permission for Gurudongmar (6715 m) and Chombu (6362 m).
Gurudongmar and the other peaks in the Kangchengyao group have steep southern aspects; they are approached more easily from the north and have shorter ascents. While returning from the 1936 Everest expedition by crossing the Naku la (5270 m), Shipton, Warren, Kempson and Wigram, in less than perfect weather, made what they thought to be the first ascent of Gurudongmar. Having read their account, it seems that they reached the lower west summit of Gurudongmar (6630 m), which would make the first ascent of the main peak in 1980 (Assam Rifles led by Norbu Sherpa). However, to confuse matters, some Sikkim mountaineers think of the lower west summit as being the main summit (presumably because it was climbed first) and think of the higher summit as Gurudongmar East.
Chombu is described by Doug Scott as ‘the Matterhorn or the Shivling–like peak of Sikkim’. It was explored in the 1940’s and 50’s by members of the Himalayan Club. Apparently, there was an attempt in 1961, but according to Harish Kapadia, ’A definite ascent of this peak is yet to be established.’
A large part of Scott’s article ‘Exploration and Climbs in Northeast Sikkim’ (The Himalayan Journal, 1997, Vol. 53, pages 53-66) is about the difficulty, high cost, and uncertainty they experienced in connection with obtaining permission for the peaks. The team members were enterprising in their explorations, in what was then considered a high security area, but somewhat thwarted by bad weather and heavy snow on their efforts to climb Gurudongmar and Chombu. As an indication of how things have changed since 1996, the expedition’s base camp at Yume Samgong (Samdong?) (4624 m) is now a very popular day trip by jeep from Lachung. While on a trip to the area in October 2007, in one day during a public holiday, 93 tourist jeeps and 1 motorcycle had registered with the last police post to drive up to Yume Samgong (Samdong?) (or ‘Zero Point’ as it is usually called locally).
Above Yumthang in the Lachung valley members of the Sikkim Amateur Mountaineering Association and groups from the Sonam Gyatso Mountaineering Institute have made a number of ascents. In the winter of 2004, the Lachung valley was also the scene of modern icefall climbing. Richard Durnan and friends from Colorado, Canada and Austria climbed many easy to access routes up to 180 m long and up to WI5 and M5 in difficulty (see American Alpine Journal, 2004, Vol. 46, page 384). Durnan reported: ‘There is great potential for further development of ice climbing in this area.’
We first tried to visit North Sikkim in 2006 to attempt Gurudongmar (6715 m), but we could not get all the necessary clearances. However, in the autumn of 2007, we got permission for Brumkhangshe (5635 m), which is one of the two Alpine Peaks in North Sikkim (the other being Lama Wangden (Angden) 5868 m in the Lachen valley). We had such an enjoyable trip climbing three summits and exploring three glaciers, that in autumn 2008 I returned with a larger group.
On both these trips we used a roadside base camp near the police post at Shiv Mandir (marked as 3905 m on the Swiss map ‘Sikkim Himalaya’). In 2007, Julie-Ann and I climbed the north ridge of Brumkhangshe and what we called Brumkhangshe North (c. 5450 m). The former is a very good snow climb with some avalanche considerations; the latter is easier angled with a short mixed step. In 2008, our group (Claire and Simon Humphris, Owen Samuel and Tom Midttun) repeated the north summit, and climbed a rocky summit above the glacier, which we called Ta (horse) Peak (c. 5300 m) because to reach the summit required some ‘a cheval’ technique.
In 2007, Julie-Ann and I explored the Rula Kang glacier and took a close look at Chombu. We found the east face high in objective danger, and the northern aspects under alternating deep snow and hollow sounding hard slab (the north ridge of Chombu could be a good route in the pre-monsoon season, and the west face may offer an interesting challenge from the Lachen valley). Immediately east of Chombu’s northeast ridge is what we called ‘Eagle Peak’ (c. 5540 m), which has a very good mixed southwest ridge and from the summit, there are awesome views of the peaks in the Kangchengyao group. Of the other peaks around the Rula Kang glacier instructors from the Sonam Gyatso Mountaineering Institute have climbed Pheling c. 5500 m (an easy snow climb that we repeated in 2007). This peak is just south along the ridge from Chombu ‘East’ (5745 m) which Doug Scott and team climbed in 1996 (an exposed crux of V).
In 2008, we turned our attentions to the western branch of the Rula Kang glacier. Samuel and Midttun made the first ascent of a rocky peak we called Changma (bride) Peak, c. 5000 m just above our camp. Then next day (with c. and S. Humphris and me) made the first ascent of Marpo (red) Peak c. 5400 m – which is a shapely peak of red rock to the southeast of Chombu.
Into the light
There is a growing realisation in India that the considerable potential for adventure travel and mountain tourism is being restrained by outdated regulations and bureaucracy. I hope that the interested organisations and government departments can work together and make better use of the potential for adventure tourism to support sustainable development in rural areas, to learn from experience and best practice in mountain regions like the European Alps and the National Parks of North America, and remove unnecessary obstacles to responsible adventure activities and mountain tourism. After so many years of restrictions and permits, it will not be easy to achieve this, but there are grounds to hope that change will come. How wonderful it would be to freely explore and climb the mountains in Sikkim, as pioneers like Kellas did 100 years ago, and as anyone can do today in most mountain ranges outside of high Asia.
Meanwhile, the future for mountaineering and climbing in Sikkim looks promising. The State Government has made it easier for foreign visitors to get access to some interesting peaks that are away from the borders. Also, there are indications that the border areas have become less sensitive, and hopefully in the future tourism and mountain recreation can flourish. The tourism service providers in Gangtok are very friendly and reliable, and work together through the Trekking Agents Association of Sikkim (TAAS); and climbing and mountaineering are developing through the Sikkim Amateur Mountaineering Association (SAMA). Both these organisations have been supported in their capacity building efforts by the Ministry of Tourism. The interested parties in Sikkim are working together to improve services to international tourists and mountain recreationists, while at the same time promoting sustainable development in mountain regions with new opportunities to local people.
Looking at the past, Sikkim has been enveloped in the mists of border tensions and access restrictions. Happily, the sublime mountains of Sikkim are now very definitely emerging from those mists, and the future will be bright.
The Alpine Peaks of Sikkim are:
In West Sikkim
Frey Peak 5830 m (Chaunrikiang valley)
Tingchenkhang 6010 m (Thansing valley)
Jopuno 5936 m (Thansing valley)
In North Sikkim
Lama Wangden 5868 m (Lachen)
Brumkhangse 5635 m (Yumthang)
The regulations for the Alpine Peaks of Sikkim are published in the Sikkim Government Gazetteer, No 83, 29 March 2006 (go to gaz2006.pdf and scroll to page 90).
Reports of Julie-Ann Clyma’s and Roger Payne’s trips to Sikkim can be found at http://www.rogerpayne.info/climbing.htm
Bajpai, GS (1999). China’s Shadow over Sikkim. Lancer Publishers, New Delhi
Chapman, F Spencer (1945). Memoirs of a Mountaineer. The Reprint Society, London
Data-Ray, Sunanda K (1984). Smash and Grab. Vikas Publishing, New Delhi
Freshfield, Douglas W (1903). Round Kangchenjunga. 2000 edition by Pilgrims Book House, New Delhi
Kapadia, Harish (2001). Across Peaks & Passes in Darjeeling and Sikkim. Indus Publishing Co, New Delhi
Meyer, K and PD (2005). In the Shadow of the Himalayas, a Photographic Record by John Claude White 1882-1908. Mapin Publishing, Ahmedabad
Naoroji, Kekoo (2003). Himalayan Vignettes, the Garhwal and Sikkim Treks. Mapin Publishing, Ahmedabad
Pierse, Simon (2005). Kangchenjunga, Imaging a Himalayan Mountain. University of Wales, Aberystwyth
Shan, Zheng (2001). A History of Development of Tibet. Foreign Language Press, Beijing
Wangchuk, P and Zulca, M (2007). Khangchendzonga, Sacred Summit. Little Kingdom, Gangtok
White, J Claude (1909). Sikhim and Bhutan, Twenty-One Years on the Northeast Frontier 1887-1908. 2005 edition by Pilgrims Book House, New Delhi
Younghusband, Francis (1910). India & Tibet. 1998 edition by Book Faith India, New Delhi
An overview of climbs in the past and future potential of the peaks in Sikkim.