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Field visit

Research expedition to Rikha Samba Glacier, Nepal


Rikha Samba Glacier, Lower Mustang, Nepal

Date & Time

18 November 2020 to 01 December 2020


Tika Ram Gurung & Sharad Joshi


A small team of researchers from ICIMOD are currently on a research expedition to Rikha Samba Glacier in the Hidden Valley of Mustang, Nepal, to collect annual glacier data and carry out routine maintenance work on automatic weather stations. Rikha Samba Glacier, one of the largest clean ice glaciers in Nepal, ranges from an elevation of 6,515–5,416 masl, and encompasses an area of 5.32 km2. Considering the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the team is strictly following safety protocols.

The field research expedition is part of the regular data collection activities under the Cryosphere Initiative, Regional Programme on River Basins and Cryosphere, ICIMOD. The initiative is supported by the Government of Norway and the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC).

  • Conduct annual glacier mass balance measurement of Rikha Samba Glacier
  • Carry out routine maintenance work and download data from two automatic weather stations (AWS) located nearby the glacier terminus and on the Glacier at accumulation zone


Carrying out dGPS survey of Rikha Samba Glacier
Carrying out dGPS survey of Rikha Samba Glacier, November 2019 (Photo: Tenzing Sherpa/ICIMOD)