Sophie’s trail, from Thulogaun to Shantibajaar, Nepal


Our ambassador, Sophie Lavaud, may have been thwarted in her attempt on K2 (8’611m) by a huge avalanche in July, but she is still determined to press on with her fundraising efforts for Norlha. At stake, a vital path linking villagers in Thulogaun with their nearest market in Shantibajaar.
K2, the world’s second highest mountain, lived up to its reputation as one of the most dangerous and challenging summits. Sophie spent three days at Camp 2 (6’650m) waiting when the avalanche struck (July 23rd), fortunately some distance from their tents. However it destroyed camp 3 (7’300m) and camp 4 where equipment and food had been stashed, making it impossible to continue.
But please continue to support Sophie. The Geneva-based climber successfully reached the top of Makalu (8’481 m) on May 23th 2016 and, although her dream of two 8’000 m peaks in one season will not be realized this time, she remains fully committed to helping the Himalayan people.

portrait_chemin_sophie_lavaudHere’s her message before her ascent :
Dear friends, I am due to set off on another fundraising challenge departing on April 4th this year. The 2016 Makalu Expedition will again help raise funds for Norlha, for whom I am proud to act as ambassador. The earthquake of April 25th and May 12th, 2015 ravaged a large part of the country. Thulogaun is one of the villages supported by Norlha in Rasuwa district. The trail linking the village to the market in Shantibajaar requires expensive improvements to prevent the many accidents that occur daily. Norlha has decided to launch a campaign called “Sophie’s trail” to rebuild the very steep mountain path stretching 1,500 metres at an estimated cost of CHF 30,000 or CHF 20.- a metre. With every metre that is funded, you will be supporting “Sophie’s trail” !
  – Sophie Lavaud

The project

Thulogaun is located at around 2,000m altitude, inaccessible by vehicle. The nearest village is Shantibajaar around 800m altitude below which is the doorway to the rest of the world for the people of Thulogaun. They make countless trips to Shantibajaar to sell their goods using this one dirt path, barely 30 cm wide and long around 1500 meters. It is narrow and dangerous but remains their one means of access during the rainy season.

The money raised by Sophie will enable Norlha to widen the path, add stone steps and landings and make it safer for villagers as they go about their daily tasks.

A small trail for great services

Donate by bank transfer

You can also make bank transfer, for this just mention the reference : Sophie’s trail in your operation.

Here are the association bank details:

  • Account CCP PostFinance : 17-304328-9
  • IBAN : CH92 0900 0000 1730 4328 9

Support the project

Sophie’s pictures


Only wide enough for one.


Family and children back from Shantibajaar.


The path is very steep.


Women on their daily journey to work.


Thulogaun children.


Support for Norlha at base camp on Makalu.


Climbing Makalu.


Sophie reached the summit of Makalu (8,481m) to help Thulogaun villagers.