Regd. No: 196582/70/067, Vat No: 10882/77

Makalu base Camp Trek

Duration: 19 Days
  • Destination: Nepal
  • Region: Makalu
  • Maximum Altitude: 5100m
  • Accommodation: Tea House/Camping
  • Activity: Trekking/High Pass
  • Trip Grade: Challenging
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner
  • Activity per day: Approx. 5 to 6 hours walking
  • Trek duration: 16 Nights/17 Days
  • Best Time: September to December and March to May
  • Transportation: Both way Domestic
  • Start/End Point: Tumlingtar to Tumlingtar

Trip Overview

Makalu base Camp Trek -19 Days

“Celebrate the Ecstasy of being into the Wild accompanying Incredible Mountain Panorama”

Popularly known as a remote and less crowded area trekking in Nepal, Makalu Base Camp Trek takes you into a wild and pristine nature where you can celebrate the world-class thrills of adventure with breathtaking mountain panorama being yourself.

It is an adventure trekking that lets you put your footsteps above 5000m high at Makalu Base Camp and also offers you an astonishing view of entire Everest Mountain Panorama, Loatse, Mt. Makalu and numerous other snow-fed summits.

Makalu Base Camp Trekking Trail is protected by Makalu Barun National Park since the trail is based inside the conservation area. Trekkers can experience a diverse species of flora and fauna in the national park.

The deep rhododendron, pine and juniper, the picturesque local settlements, local people’s lifestyle, local food items and the local accommodation are magnificent to enjoy during Makalu Base Camp Trek.

We spend most of the days above 3000m and some of the days above 5000m as well. Makalu Base Camp Trek is still distinct from other trekking trails located in Nepal because the Makalau region has numerous mysteries which are yet to be uncovered.

The Barun Valley and the mighty glaciers, Sherpa and Gurung people, terraced farmland, the view of the 5th tallest mountain peak, Mt. Makalu (8,481m) and pleasant meadows are also equally mesmerizing during the trek.

Things to Celebrate during Makalu Base Camp Trek

  • Immerse yourself into the wild and unspoiled nature
  • Interact and experience people living in the remote areas of Nepal
  • Enjoy observing pleasant terraced farmlands, waterfalls, alpine pastures and deep woods
  • Explore and witness mesmerizing Barun Valley and the Glaciers
  • Experience a diverse species of flora and fauna in Makalu Barun National Park
  • Instill the thrills of adventure ascending up to Swiss Base camp (5150m./16896ft)
  • Witness entire Everest Mountain Panorama, Loatse, Mt. Makalu and numerous other snow-fed summits.

Getting to the Trailhead and Away

Tumlingtar is the trailhead for Makalu Base Camp Trek. It is located in Sankhusawa District of province no. 1. It takes a very long drive almost for 2 days to get Tumlingtar from Kathmandu which is almost impossible.  Therefore, those who are planning their Makalu Base Camp Trek have to use domestic flight from Kathmandu to Tumlingtar. The flight lasts for 35 minutes. It is a scenic flight.  You will end your trek at the place and take another short and scenic flight back to Kathmandu.

Best Weather to Travel

What is the best weather for Maklau Base Camp Trek? This is the most frequent question to be asked by the trekkers who are preparing their Makalu Base Camp Trek. One must venture in the best weather in order to triumph over Makalu Base Camp Trek since it is completely wilderness adventure trekking above 5000m from the sea level. If it is rainy and snowy on the trail, one really cannot triumph over this trek.

The best time to travel to Makalu Base Camp is between Sep-Nov. These months in Nepal not only offer best time for Makalu Base Camp Trek but they also are the finest times of the year for trekking and hiking. The temperature is mild, the region and the trail receives no rain and snowfall and the mountain breathtaking during the months September, October and November.

Similarly, people who are willing/planning to travel to Makalu region can find  the months March, April and May equally beautiful as September, October and November. The flowering rhododendron and the cascading waterfalls in lower Makalu region makes the trail more enchanting during the trek.

 Food and Accommodation on the Trail

Since Makalu Region Trekking Trail is one of the remote and less crowded treks in Nepal, the trekkers who are undertaking this trek will be having a very basic food and accommodation at local teahouses and lodges.  The local lodges and teahouse are run by the local people and they offer only ordinary accommodation because they are very remote from the modern cities. However, the beds you are using will be comfortable and clear enough to spend a single night. If you are wondering about the cost of one accommodation, the cost ranges between Rs.  – 500-1000. During the peak trekking seasons Autumn( Sep-Nov) and Spring ( Mar-May), the cost may rise up to Rs. 1500.

Now, let’s talk about Makalu Base Camp Trek Foods. Again, the food items are presented in the menu by the local teahouses/lodges. Actually, they don’t offer many items of food in their menu and you have to find some of the items from it. You will enjoy Continental, Asian, Indian and Nepali dishes. They, normally, offer Nepali Daal Bhat, Curries, Noodle Soup, French Fires, Tibetan Bread, Dumpling etc. Don’t expect to enjoy your favorite food item of food like you do in modern restaurants in the cities. In fact, you make one local item favorite during the trek. Can’t you? Or Nepali Daal Bhat can be your favorite.

You are suggested to bring some light snacks for the trek so that you don’t go starved on the trail if you even don’t want to have the food items mentioned in the menu.

Vegetarian? Yes, vegetarian will have the options of foods. They will offer you only vegetable items if you don’t want to have meat on the trail. You don’t need to panic about it.

You are allowed to have your own item of snacks or food during the trek at teahouse/lodge.

Makalu Base Camp Trek Elevation Ranges

Once you are in Kathmandu (1400m), you are at 1400m and you will take a short flight from Kathmandu to Tumlingtar which is located at an elevation of 410m.1345ft. Then, you will switch your walk to Num(1560m/5118). Passing through Seduwa(1500m./4921fit)  to Tashi Gaon (2100m/6889ft), we arrive at  Themathang Kharka which is located at an elevation of  3810m. /12500ft. where we have a day for Acclimatization. After this important and required acclimatization, we head for Makalu Base Camp at an elevation of 4870m.15977ft and to visit at Swiss Base Camp (5150m./16896ft). Here, while coming to Swiss Base Camp, we have already gained 4640m altitude. So, starting a trekking trip at 400m and ascending up to 5000m is really challenging.

We follow the same trail all the way back to Tumlingtar via Langmale Kharka (4410m. /14668ft) and end Makalu Base Camp Trek.

Makalu Base Camp Trek Difficulty and Preparations

One must accept the fact that Makalu Base Camp Trek is a challenging trek above 5000m. Simply put, it’s not a joke and an easy task to trek to Makalu Base Camp at an elevation of 4870m.15977ft and to visit at Swiss Base Camp (5150m./16896ft).  However, it doesn’t mean that you can’t do it. It is still doable because hundreds of people accomplish Makalu Base Camp at an elevation of 4870m.15977ft and to visit at Swiss Base Camp (5150m./16896ft) triumphantly.

You need to accompany with right and reliable trekking gear with prior trekking experience. One should have the stamina of trekking at least 7-8 hours a day at higher elevation like above 4000m. If you lack these preparations, don’t dare doing this trek. Also, find the right and the finest weather of the year that is autumn and get ready to encounter the extreme wilderness with basic foods and accommodation on the trail.

Acclimatization and Altitude Sickness

We will have a day acclimatization on the trail beforehand reaching Makalu Base Camp at an elevation of 4870m.15977ft and to visit at Swiss Base Camp (5150m./16896ft).  However, some people also prefer to have two rest days to acclimatize their body with elevation well during Makalu Base Camp Trek. Also, we get the elevation gradually by ascending with the proper pacing. If you ascend quickly while trekking in the mountain, there is high possibility of getting acute altitude sickness. We will have one whole day for acclimatization at Themathang Kharka which is located at an elevation of  3810m. /12500ft.

If you want to add another day for acclimatization, we will set Makalu Base Camp Trek Itinerary accordingly.

Yes, there are some cases of altitude or acute mountain sickness with the trekkers every year. Then, what happen to them? They are evacuated safely or made okay with some first aids taking them to the lower elevation. Acute mountain sickness is sudden so that one has to adopt some important precautions:

  • Get elevation gradually with proper acclimatization
  • Address your health issues if you have beforehand the trek
  • Don’t smoke and drink a lot at higher elevation
  • Avoid having impure water and food during the trek
  • Use right and reliable trekking equipment
  • Have a sound sleep
  • Report immediately to the leader if you have any problem during the trek
  • Carry first-aid kit with some basic medicines

Internet, Phone and Wifi Services on the Trail

You can simply install local Nepali SIM card in your cell phone and take it to the mountain. You can also buy data pack to run internet on the trail. In fact, for some days at higher elevation, it may not work, but, it will help you a lot during the trek. You can buy either NT or NCELL Sim car and install call and internet on your phone. It will take no more than Rs.100 for you to get it.

You can also have the access of internet or Wi Fi on the trail at local lodges/teahouses. They may charge you Rs. 200-500 per password or per device. Few years back, there wouldn’t be these facilities on the trail and in the teahouses during Makalu Base Camp Trek.

You can even talk to your family, relatives and the friends from the Makalu Base Camp Trekking Trail very easily and can share your images and the videos instantly these days.

However, you may not have good strength of phone, Wifi and internet in case of cloudy and snowy weathers at higher altitude.

Can Solo traveler do this Trek?

No. Solo independent traveler cannot do Makalu Base Camp Trek on his/her own. No solo traveler is permitted to do trekking in any area in Nepal by the government. But, it doesn’t mean that, single traveler cannot do this trek; one has to hire either a guide or a porter. Also, the group has to be accompanied at least a licensed guide during the trek. It means, without hiring an authorized and licensed guide, the group is not allowed to go on Makalu Base Camp Trekking Trail. This is because of security issue during the trip.

Makalu Base Camp Trek Permits

One who is planning for his/her Makalu Base Camp Trek requires obtaining two different trekking permits. These permits are: TIMS Card and Makalu Barun National Park Entry Permit. TIMS Card cost $10, Makalau Barun National Park Entry Permit costs $ 30.

The trekking or travel company with whom you are planning your Makalu Base Camp Trek will arrange or help you obtaining these permits. Ask them to get them for you beforehand the trek. Optionally, you can visit Nepal Tourism Board office and obtain these permits too.

 Makalu Base Camp Trek Transportation

Road transportation is almost impossible during Makalu Base Camp Trek since the trailhead Tumingtar is quite far from Kathmandu. Actually, it takes almost two days to get Tumlingtar from Kathmandu.  The short and scenic flight from Kahtmanudu to Tumlingtar is the only option of transportation for Makalu Base Camp Trek. The flight lasts for only 35 minutes. You will do the same while you return from the trek back to Kathmandu. This is a domestic flight from Kathmandu to Tumlingtar which is scheduled every day. The flights may get disturbed due to bad weather condition.

Guide and Porters

You have to hire at least one guide/porter for your Makalu Base Camp Trek because one is not allowed to go there without guide/porter by the government of Nepal as it is a rule. So, don’t try to enter the area independently.  You could do it few years back; you cannot do it now.

The guide you are hiring will be highly experienced and professional. If you choose to hire porters, they will be helping you throughout the trek in many ways. The porters will speak just a little English but still they can communicate with the foreign tourists.

The guide and the porters will not leave you alone from the beginning to the end of the trek. The will continuously be helping you by carrying your luggage, serving you foods, arranging your accommodation and helping your accommodate in new culture and environment.

You just have to pay their wages and don’t have to worry about their insurance, food and accommodation during the trek. Normally, the cost of a guide ranges between USD 25-30 and the porter costs between USD 15-25 per day.

 Estimated Budget for Makalu Base Camp Trek

The expenses goes for different titles like Permits, getting Equipment and Clothing, guide and porter, transportation,   food, drinks and tips.

Permits Costs

TIMS Card- USD 10- equivalent to Rs.1000

Manaslu/ Ganesh Himal Protected Area Permit USD 30 – equivalent to Rs. 3000

Transportation Cost

Domestic Flight from Kathmandu to Tumlingtar- USD 280-90

Food and Accommodation Cost

Normally, one accommodation costs between $ 8-15. The accommodation will be on twin sharing basis.

One item of food cost ranges between $5-10.

Extra Costs

  • Donation and Tips
  • Drinks
  • Equipment and Clothing

Makalu Base Camp Trek Past and Present

There is a huge difference between the Makalu Base Camp Trek in the past and at present. In the past, it means few years back, Makalu Base Camp Trek would be camping trek. Trekkers had to hire cooks, porters and guide. The trekking crew had to carry all required equipment and food stuffs by themselves which would be very tough. Trekkers would be spending the night in the tents.  But now, all Makalu Base Camp Treks are teahouse based.

There would be no teahouses on the trail in the past but now trekkers can eat and stay overnight at teahouses. They just have to hire guide and porters on the trail.

Phone calls could hardly make during Makalu Base Camp Trek in the past but now trekkers can easily enjoy phone calls, internet and Wifi on the trail.

Therefore, the Makalu Base Camp Trek is safer now than in the past.

Details Itinerary

You can arrive in Kathmandu via any international flight that people recommend for you. Optionally, you can take a drive if you are using road to enter Nepal. You can use Indian and Chinese border for this. Whatever way you use for arriving in Kathmandu, our representative will receive you and takes you to the hotel. The representative will let you know about the short orientation meeting regarding your Everest-Gokyo Lake Trek. Since we do not have any scheduled activities to do for today, you just rest and relax at the hotel or take a short walk around the city if time favors you.

Today, largely, you will spend your time with astonishing UNESCO World Heritage Sites located in Kathmandu. You will go to explore them one by one after your breakfast. The private vehicle will come to receive you along with a professional and experienced city guide at the hotel where your stay and transfer you to the historical and religious sites which includes Swyombhunath Stupa( Monkey Temple), Patan Durbar Square, Bouddhanath Stupa and Pashupatinath Temple. You end this trip at around between 3-4 pm and prepare well for your Tsum Valley Trekking.

First, we drive to domestic terminal of Kathmandu airport and take short flight to tumlingtar. The flight lasts for 35 minutes.

Once you get to Tumlingtar airport, we drive to Num. On the way to Num village, you pass through local villages, woods and picturesque landscapes. Stay overnight at local teahouse at Num Village.

At the beginning of today’s trek, you will encounter a steep descent. However, you will enjoy the walk through terraced farmlands and deep woods. Next, you will reach Barun River. Cross the river and take a deep ascent which lets you enter the Makalu Barun National Park.

Present your permits to the officials and spend the night at local guesthouse.

We have a ridge to ascend today first. We basically follow the Barun River today. Passing through terraced paddy fields and local settlements, finally, we arrive at Tashi Gaon. One can witness some magnificent views of mountains from Tashi Gaon.

Actually, it is a tough day for us because we are getting 1400m elevation all the way up till we get to Khumba Danda. We pass several forested areas, streams and ridges. The trail gets steeper as you ascent to the higher elevation. You will also pass through pasture lands, stone steps and freshwater lakes in order to get the climax of the ridge. After a short walk from the top of the ridge, you will get to Khumba Danda where you spend the night with magnificent view of Chamlang Mountain and other alluring summits.

First, we head towards Barun River, through the rhododendron and pine forest. You will pass various landscapes and ridges before you get to Themathang Kharka. Finally, you will have a short ascent from Barun River in order to get to Themathang Kharka.

You will stroll around the village and the incredible pasture lands. Walk up to the hills nearby, relax and enjoy hot drinks in order to enhance stamina for the further walk.

Today’s trek is taken as one of the most difficult ascends all the way up passing through steep and strenuous climb for around 2 hours. Next, you will have a very pleasant walk via picturesque pasturelands and the local settlements till you get to Yangri Kharka. Stay overnight at local lodge at Yangri Kharka.

From Yangri Kharka, the trail gains elevation through beautiful meadows and alpine forests. You will also see magnificent mountain views on the trail to Langmale Kharka. Before we get to Langmale Kharka, we reach Yak Kharka where some people stay overnight before heading to Shershong. Yak Kharka is a beautiful high pasture land for cattle and yaks. A further from Yak Kharka for abour an hour, you will reach Langmale Kharka.

Today, we get the elevation of 210m. Today’s trek is, relatively easier. We will walk via incredible pasturelands and forests viewing some astonishing mountain panorama before getting to Shershong which is a 3-4 hours walk. Arrive at Sherhong and stay overnight at local lodge/teahouse.

This is a beautiful day for you because we are stepping at Makalu Base Camp, almost our job is done but still to go to Swiss Base Camp. As we ascend to Makalu Base Camp, we can view majestic The stunning  southern part of Mt. Makalu  other popular mountains like Baruntse, Kali Himal, Chamlang and Makalu II. We stay overnight at Makalu Base Camp at local teahouse.

Swiss Base Camp is located at around 300m higher than Makalu Base Camp. People walk up to the Swiss Base Camp to view mountains in a better way. We celebrate blissful moments of capturing from Swiss Base Camp and walk down to Langmale Kharka via Makalu Base Camp. You will spend around 6 hours for this walk today.

Actually, kharka is a pasture land for cattle and yaks. So, you will pass through pleasant pasture lands with magnificent views and arrive at Mumbuk dropping down to 3540m from 4410m. Arrive at Mumbuk and stay overnight at local teahouse.

Initially, you walk down to Khongma ridge. Next, you will follow the ridge with rhododendron trees. The walk along the ridge takes you to Barun River which finally takes you Tashi Gaon. Enjoy local accommodation at teahouse.

You will basically follow Barun river today. Walk out of Makalu Barun National Park as you leave Seduwa and head for Num. After few hours of walk, you will arrive at Num.

You will drive to Tumlingtar from Num today. It takes around 5-6 hours to get Tumlingtar from Num Village. This drive will offer you some magnificent views of landscapes and local settlements. Arrive at Tumlingtar and wait for another short flight to Kathmandu early in the morning.

Take another short and scenic flight to Kathmandu from Tumlingtar. The flight will last for 35 minutes.

You will be received by private vehicle at Kathmandu airport and transferred to the hotel. Enjoy a beautiful farewell dinner in the evening.

Today, you will leave Kathmandu for your home or for other trips that you are going to undertake. For this, we receive you from the hotel and drop you to the Tribhuvan International Airport and we bid farewell and you will depart. Have a wonderful time ahead.

Cost Exclude/Includes

Question and Answer

Cost & Date

All set dates are guaranteed departures. If the following dates are not suitable for your travel plans then contact us for your custom trip dates. The private trips are available on any date of your selection at any time of the year.

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Client Reviews

Based on 58 reviews.
Alfie Duchars
Alfie Duchars
We arrived at Kathmandu airport with only the plan that we wanted to do the 3 passes trek, we hadn’t actually organised anything, and were even thinking we would only need a guide for parts of the trek. Milan met us at the airport by chance, rode with us in our taxi to our hotel and said he’d be happy to help us with the whole trek, but without forcing us to use his company. We don’t regret a thing - we paid one very good price which included a guide from Kathmandu for the whole trek, the flights to and from Lukla, accomodation in lodges and teahouses and 3 meals a day. Milan even included paragliding, bunjee jumping and white water rafting in this same price. The trek was stunning, lucky enough to have perfect weather for the most part. We also couldn’t have asked for a better guide, Rajan was perfect for us, took us at our pace and taught us so much about Nepal and the culture that we never would’ve been able to learn without him. He became not only a brilliant companion but a good friend who we hope to see again. Once we arrived back in Kathmandu after the trek he even took us to his sister’s home and we were given a perfect home cooked Dhal bhat - a real treat after all the mountain food we’d been having. Overall, Himalayan Spirit Adventure has turned out to be a very good find, and Milan an excellent organiser and very fair businessman. He’s even taking us out to dinner tonight! We are very pleased and happy that our 2months in Nepal has started so well. Thank you Milan and the team!
Nans Bouissou
Nans Bouissou
Nice tour very Well organised from Kathmandu I spent 11 days in Langtang which was beautiful going two times over 4000 meters !! The guide was very kind and professionnal and helped me to go through that challenge. Im very thankful to him for that. After I saw beautiful mountain from Nagakrot and had the chance to chill 3 days in Pokhara. The company is very arranging as they accept to change my hotel for a better one in the center. You can trust them for your next trip Nepal if you want to be well accompanied ;)
Bianka Hermanski
Bianka Hermanski
We really liked the trip Milan organized for us. We met him at the airport and we discussed our wishes at his office in Kathmandu. We did a nice hiking tour from Pokhara to Australian Basecamp in the Annapurna highlands. After that we did a nice rafting tour and a safari near Chitwan. Milan was always available for questions and we didn't need to be worry about anything. I can recommend him very much.
Gerrard Ould
Gerrard Ould
Our trek to Everest Base Camp with Himalayan Spirit Adventure Treks and Expeditions was exceptional! We were lucky to have one of Nepal’s greatest and best known guides - Jagat (“Kaji”). He knew Everest like the back of his hand, having been a guide and Sherpa for over 50 years. Everyone along the trek knew him well and we were warmly welcomed by his colleagues and friends everywhere we went. He was so respected and known that he was able to use his connections to achieve what we simply couldn’t do ourselves (eg. Getting us on return flights from Lukla on a different airline at no cost, when there was no availability with the company we had tickets to). He spoke some English and was able to tailor our trip to our needs. He is an incredibly kind, giving and caring person. Whilst he was much older than us, and we consider ourselves fairly active and fit, he set a comfortable pace and we felt so incredibly lucky to have experienced the Everest trek with him. DB (family to Kaji), organised everything before our trip, including flights and pick up. He set out our itinerary and made sure it was what we needed, and that nothing was left out. He even contacted us periodically through our trek to ensure we were well and didn’t need anything. This company is a LOCAL company, employing LOCAL people, ensuring the money returns to the LOCAL community. Whilst you may be tempted to trek with a big foreign company for peace of mind, I can assure you, you won’t be disappointed by this company as it’s fantastic and the people are genuine and wonderful. Thank you especially to Kaji. We would love to see you soon.
Lucilla Patrizi
Lucilla Patrizi
Through our accommodation in Thamel, we were introduced to manager Dh, who immediately informed us about the different trekking options. We went for a drink to discuss the routes again and he told us about the career of the agency. We finally decided on the Manaslu trek, which we unfortunately had to postpone for 2 days due to an illness. Dh was helpful and understanding, so it was no problem to postpone the tour at very short notice. The Manaslu Circuit Tour would have been unimaginable without Madhu, our guide. He organized spontaneously and reliably the accommodations and the daily stages and was always a good companion. Madhu knew the area and the people of the surroundings very well, so he did not have a map with him. If you value getting an overview of the route, you should carry one yourself. On the whole, a good price-performance ratio, a helpful crew who knows their business!
Tomás González
Tomás González
We arrived to Nepal thinking about doing this trek on our own, but in the end we thought the piece of mind of having everything arranged for us (route, sleeping places, etc.) would make the trip more worth it. We were right! Milan and his team made sure we had all perfectly planned, but also had space to make adjustments based on our adaptation to the altitude and spontaneous decisions based on our interests (I'm a photographer so I took my time on each place.) Our guide/porter made sure we achieved our goal of reaching the Everest Base Camp safely. When I had complications adapting to the altitude of over 5000 meters, he reacted promptly, knowing exactly what to do. As I plan to come back to Nepal in a few years (this time to do a summit), I would trust on this company again and I recommend it whether you want to do a short trek or one of +2 weeks.
Jamie McClenaghan
Jamie McClenaghan
Such an unforgettable experience. I arrived to Nepal on a whim with no real plan on what i wanted to get out of the trip. I was introduced to Milan and his team who created a unique and thrilling experience for me which would last the duration of my trip. I paid a single fee and EVERYTHING else was taken care of by Milan and his team. Milan and the team were very flexible and helped me in any way they could with information about Kathmandu, local deals and even arranged my PCR tests. Literally everything was taken care of by Milans team. It was fantastic. I will most certainly come back to Nepal and will 100% be with Himalayan Spirit Adventure Treks & Expeditions again. Though this time i will arrive as a friend rather than a customer. Thank you once again Milan!
Cassidy Newman
Cassidy Newman
Milan and his team made our trip to Kathmandu unforgettable. My travel partner and I got to the country having no idea what to do and how we would navigate the city until Milan came in and saved the day. His team went above and beyond to make sure we didn't have to do any logistics and could just enjoy our vacation. With knowledgeable tour guides and the best hospitality in the city, Milan gave us an insider's view of Nepal with an experience that left us feeling like family.

Cassidy Newman

Milan and his team made our trip to Kathmandu unforgettable. My travel partner and I got to the country having no idea what to do and how we would navigate the city until Milan came in and saved the day. His team went above and beyond to make sure we didn’t have to do any logistics and could just enjoy our vacation. With knowledgeable tour guides and the best hospitality in the city, Milan gave us an insider’s view of Nepal with an experience that left us feeling like family.

Couly Jouce

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