The Upper Thimphu is a fun small volume run about 30 minutes north of the capital city of Thimphu. The first part above Pangrizampa Lhakang has 2 tough Class IV+ rapids. You can take out just below Pangrizampa Lhakang or continue down the nearly continuous section below here. Both take-outs have driving bridge with river access.

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Trip Highlights

Mile 0: Walk down to the river from a the small village of Kabesa.

Hiking down to the Upper Thimphu Chhu

Hiking down to the Upper Thimphu Chhu

Mile .25: Jessica's Falls (IV+) can be scouted and portaged from the right side.

Jessica Falls on the Upper Thimphu Chhu

Jessica Falls on the Upper Thimphu Chhu

Mile 1: Descent Momo (IV+) is a long rapid with a nice boof at the bottom. You can scout the entrance from the right side and then paddle down to and eddy on the left where you can scout or portage the bottom. The whole rapid can be portaged on the left.

Descent Momo Rapid on the Upper Thimphu Chhu

Descent Momo Rapid on the Upper Thimphu Chhu

Mile 1.8: There is river access above or at one of the bridges at Pangrizampa Lhakang.

Kayaking below Pangrizampa Lhakang

Kayaking below Pangrizampa Lhakang


Below here the river is nearly continuous Class IV with one Class V. There are good eddies between each of the rapids.

Mile 2.1: Big Thinley (V) is a long rapid that can be scouted and portaged on the right.

Thinley running Big Thinley Rapid on the Upper Thimphu Chhu

Thinley running Big Thinley Rapid on the Upper Thimphu Chhu

Mile 2.3: Dechencholing (IV+) is named after the small village you pass on the right while running this rapid.

Mile 3: Take-out at the next driving bridge.

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