The principal peaks of the western portion of the great Annapurna Himal, including Hiunchuli, Annapurna South, Fang, Annapurna, Ganagapurna, Annapurna 3 and Machapuchhere, are arranged almost precisely in a circle about 10 miles in diameter with a deep glacier-covered amphitheater at the center. From this glacier basin, known as the Annapurna Sanctuary, the Modi Khola knifes its way south in a narrow gorge fully 12,000 ft. deep. Further south, the gorge opens up into a wide and fertile valley, the domain of the Gurungs. The middle and upper portions of Modi Khola offer some of the best short trekking routes in Nepal, and the valley is located so that these treks can be easily combined with treks into the Kali Gandaki region to the west. In spite of the great heights of the surrounding peaks and ice walls, the valley floor between 12,000 and 14,000 ft. can provide comfortable camping spots in good weather. The Annapurna Himal is a vast massif with several peaks above 7000m. Part of the range forms a natural amphitheatre known as the Annapurna Sanctuary, ringed by such giants as Annapurna 1, Glacier Dome, Ganagapurna, Fang and Machapuchhere.
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