Last trip (2009) I was shocked at the variety and quality of hiking / climbing gear available to buy or rent in Kathmandu, Nepal.
Mostly knock offs — “North Farce” — but you can get real gear, as well. Full price.
Manaslu Mountain Trail:
There is a minor manufacturing industry here now for outdoor equipment. Much is copied, using quality materials from China or Korea. Several companies make their own items for export. Famously Sherpa Adventure Gear is made in Kathmandu, so fine quality items are made here, if expensive.
On the cheaper side of this, a friend Uday has a small factory nearby and produces a range of equipment that certainly does the job at low cost. Is the quality as high as you can buy at home? Probably not, but it is not bad either …
details – Equipment that you can buy in Kathmandu
Jet your own gear to Kathmandu, if you can.
If you can’t, no worry. You can buy enough gear for a trek and later donate it to the local people. Or buy whatever you need and bring it home with you.
Things have certainly changed since my first visit to Kathmandu in the 1990s. At that time there was only one bank that would accept foreign credit cards. 🙂