TREKKING TOURS OF HIMACHAL PARDESH
TREKKING IN HIMACHAL PARDESH
Himachal offers the most amazing and variegated trekking options to the adventurous minded: cold deserts,high mountains, dense forest, alpine pastures . The degree of difficulty can range from moderate to strenuous to extremely difficult, and the elevations from 2000meters to 5500meters.The duration can stretch from 2days to 8days. And,true to its unique claim to being the DEV BHOOMI where the Pandavas roamed in exile,every valley has its own Devta, and every trek is imbued withits own mythological aura,adding a unique facet to one's travels in the remoter areas.The state also has 2 National Parks and 32 wildlife sanctuaries: many trekking routes pass through these protected areas and there is every chance of spotting the unique wildlife of these temperate forests including the highly endangered snow leopard, western tragopan and musk deer.Although every district of the state can lay claim to popular treks,the prime trekking areas lie in Kullu,Kangra,Chamba,Kinnaur,Lahaul and Spiti and upper Shimla.Brief profiles of some of the more enjoyable and interesting treks are given below
chandratal lake to baralacha pass TREK
3days,45kms 14500 to 16500feet
Chandratal is a Glacial lake at 14500feets located between the Rothang and Kunzampasses. It is a full day's drive to the lake from manali.Bring one's own gear and provisions from Manali as there is no habitation along the way.Camp the first night on the shores of the lake which is much bigger(4kms.circumference),and deeper than it looks.The chandra, river flows next to the lake.First day's trek is of 20kms,following the river upstream,past the huge riverine island known as Samudra Tapu which becomes one massive block of ice in the winters.Night camp at Topkogongma, next to a stream.Second day begins by fording the ice-cold stream at 7am.Must reach the next, much bigger stream (Topkoyongma) by noon as after that it is too swollen with glacial melt to cross. Camp on bluff overlooking river, height 15500feet.Third day's trek much more enjoyable and gentle,over pastures,past the unbelievable majestic baralacha glacier on your left(west) which is the source of the chandra river, finally reaching baralacha pass(16500feet) after six hours. This is on the manali-leh road and one can get a vehicle from here back to manali.Wildlife sightings: marmot, pica, birds(horned lark,lammergier vulture, black red start, sandlark, snow pigeons,choughs).
5DAYS.72KMS.2200 TO 3954METERS
The 754.40 square kms. of the Great Himalayan national park ( GHNP) offer some of the most enchanting mountain trekking in the Himalayas.The GHNP has developed trails and camping sites and franchised a local CBO-SAHARA-to organize the men and materials for the trekkers. the Tirthan and sainj are two of the four rivers that flow through the park, and this trek takes one from the valley of the Tirthan,over the supakhani jogni to the Sainj valley. Trek begins from a small village called Gushaini on banks of the Tirthan, one of the last few rivers in Himachal which still have trout.Follow Tirthan upstream for 8kms to Rolla(2100mts.) which has a forest hut.On day two track leaves the Tirthan and climbs to the north-east cresting two ridge lines, Rakhundi top(3622mts.) andGhumtarao(3500mts.)which is a verdant pasture and camping site. Day three is over alpine pastures dotted with juniper and dwarf rhododendron among which one can spot musk deer. Night camp is at Dhela thatch(3737mts.) which has a large trekker's hut,flowing water and magnificent views of the khandedar massif.This is prime monal and western tragopan habitat,On day four one descends through dense forests of spruce, brown oak, fir, cedar and then broad leafs-walnut, jamun, maple and horse chest-nut-to shakti where one crosses the sainj river.Shakti(2200mts) has a fine trekker's camp with toilets and piped water, on the banks of the river in the middle of a thick green grove of sea-buck thorn. final day's trek is the longest-21kms-but almost level along and down the sainj, most of it through the sainj wildlife sanctuary.one can pick up amazing driftwood on the river bank.About five hours to Neulli- the roadhead- where one can get taxis or buses for aut on the main NH 21 to kullu. permission for trekking in the GHNP has to be obtained from the director GHNP at shamshi.
PIN PARBAT TREK
8DAYS.175KMS.2500 TO 5319MTS.
A trek that takes one from the parbati valley in kullu to the pin valley in spiti across the 5319mts pin parbati pass, from the lush temperate forest of the former to the barren, cold desert landscapes of latter.One needs to be extremely fit and very well prepared for this trek as there is absolutely no habitation along its entire length. Trek commences from Gwacha, a tiny hamlet high up the parbati valley, past manikaran.from there the route follows the parbati river upstream for three days with night halts at khir ganga(hot springs),Pandupul(steeped in the pandava mythology) and mantalai,. One passes through amazing forests of betula (bhojpatra) and walnut, make a few risky river crossings on wiresuspended baskets ! only persons you may now meet are the migratory gujjars and gaddis.Treeline is crossed just before pandupul. mantalai is a huge glacial lake at 4116mts. It is the source of the parbati. It is an awesome sight with glaciers flowing down to it from allsides. from here it is another two days of hard climbing to the pin parbati pass.The saddle of the pass is covered with a permanent ice-field and must be crossed with great care as it is criss-crossed with crevasses. fifth day's campsite is far below the pass, on the banks of the infant pin river at 4200mts. it takes two more days to reach the first village on the pin side-mudh. The entire stretch from the pass to mudh is in the pin valley national park which provides a haven for many rare species-snow leopard,spiti wolf, ibex and ghural. A road has now reached mudh, 12kms. beyond which are sagnam/mikkim(3600mts) a twin village located at the confluence of the pin and the paraiho. from here it is a spectacular drive of 35kms. to kaza, and then on to manali over the kunzum and rothangpasses.
SRIKHAND MAHADEV TREK
5DAYS.100KMS.1200 TO 5227MTS.
One of the most revered peaks in himachal. Abounding in mythology of shiva-parvati and the pandavas. situated on the border of shimla and kullu.Alternate routes exist but best to start from sairopa and exit from Baghipul.Base camp is the very comfortable trekker's hostel at sairopa on the banks of the Tirthan in the Banjar valley.Day one covers 18kms along and across the furious palchan khad to phlach(9000fts).Day two is a 22kms trek. first half is a 2000feet climb over a carpet of alpine flowers and grasses to the 3950mts high pattu Burji; second half is a much more strenuous descent over nallahs and ice-bridges to Bhimdwar. camp site is in a lush valley at 3600mts encircled by towering waterfalls. third day's trek most demanding: one has to climb more than 1600mts over 8kms., the last 1300mts over sheer moraine and huge boulders. There are compensations, however, on the way;the majestic but extremely rare brahmkamal flower can be sighted in the dozens, the poignant Nain Sarovar, a glacial lake supposedly born of a teardrop from the eyes of the Goddess parvati, bhim ki bahi- huge stone tablets with hieroglyphic markings on them: they are supposed to be the tablets on which Bhim kept account of the pandavas'travels ! And finally the enormous srikhand peak itself-a black, cracked rock monolith 20mts high- the shivling, surrounded by a permanent snowfield. It is an unforgettable sight. Return to bhimdwar for the night. on the fourth day one returns via a different route, over the appropriately named Danda dhar, down to the deep kurpen khad, and on to the quaint forest house at samatan for the night. The next day it's short walk to the roadhead at baghipul, five hours drive from shimla.
CHANDRAKHANI-MALANA-RASOL 3DAYS. 45KMS 2200 TO 3500MTS.
This trek takes one from the beas valley to the parbati valley, over two passes and through the legendary village of malana.It begins from rumsu 6kms above Naggar on the left bank of the beas.climbing southwards from Rumsu, through dense forests of cedar, spruce and oak , one passes stellag and Dhan karari thatches.The view of the pir panjal to the north is mind-blowing.First day's halt is at chaklani(3300mts.) just below the chandrakhani pass(3500mts.) Chandrakhani is one of the most beautiful passes in the state, with wide snow covered slopes leading up to it and a thick carpet of birch, spruce and bhojpatra extending almost to the top.Beyond the pass is the malana valley, ruled by jamlu devta who inspires total obedience even today. unremitting descent of 6000feet to malana village.Malana has its own unique customs, religion, architecture and form of democracy where the village Panchayat decides everythings.Reputed to be the oldest democracy in the world, its residents descended from the soldiers of Alexander's armies. no rest houses here, so best to camp beyond the malana stream.Third day's trek of about 18kms.Over the Rasol pass (3200mts.)which divides this valley from the parbati valley. Stupendous view of the malana glacier and high alpine pastures to the east.steep descent on other side to Rasol village, then 8kms, to chalal, a much bigger hamlet on right bank of the parbati. Abounds in rest house. pool parlours and cafes serving italian, french and israeli cuisine ! very popular with young Europeans final stretch is a delightful, 2kms walk on the bank up the foaming parbati, cross over a bridge to left bank and arrive at kasol village, the road-head for Bhuntar, kullu and mandi. It has forest rest house, HPTDC hotel and private boarding houses.
HAMTA PASS 3DAYS.50KMS,2650 TO 4227MTS.
Hamta is the eastern -most pass on the pir panjal range which divides the valleys of lahaul and kullu.This trek route is the shortest line between the chandra and Beas rivers and was the favoured route before the road over the rothang pass was the favoured route before the road over the Rothang pass was constructed.trek commences at sethan village,8kms above Prini on the left bank of the Beas.Track goes upstream on the left bank of the Alain stream northwards,past kharmdiari(3400mts.)sarotu thatch,jabri,crosses over to the right bank; a gentle ascending walk of an hour ends at the first day's camp site-chhikka(3500mts), a pleasant meadow between high bluffs,just above the tree line: common to see a couple of gujjar encampments there. on day 2 one continues to follow the Alain north-east, the ascent becoming steeper.After two hours one comes to the huge pasture of jaura thatch,carpeted with ferns and alpine flowers,then Balu ka Ghera-a massive, circular depression wherethe Alain forms a lake.Track circles the lake, climbs a 200mts. rockfall and ends at a shelf: this is Ratan thali the camp site (3900mts). To the north are high 6000mts.peaks-dharamsura, papsura-from which hang a myriad glaciers. from one of these the alain is born. on day 3 a stiff one hour climb brings one to the hamta pass.The view to the north-lahaul-is amazing.2000 feet straight below is the Hamta stream, emerging from the Hamta glacier to the east and flowing northwards to the chandra valley.Descent is initially very steep, but then it is a lovely walk of about three hours on the alpine grasslands on right bank of Hamta to the chandra river.Hamta meets the chandra three kms. above the tiny hamlet of chatru, which is on the main highway connecting manali and kaza.
3DAYS,28KMS.2200 TO 4270MTS.
Many beautiful lakes are scattered along the pir panjal range on both flanks of the rothang pass.Bhrigu lake, where the sage Bhrigu rishi is supposed to have meditated, is revered by the local people.Trek starts at whispering Rocks, a few kms. beyond palchan on the manali-rothang road. Gradual ascent out of the beas nallah, over agricultural fields and a succession of "thatches"separated by dense forests of deodar, fir and spruce under which the rare taxus bacatta can also be seen.one crosses khanora thatch and maple thatch, so named because its floor is completely carpeted with the leaves of the numerous maple trees that surround it.A large number of fallen trees here, evidence of the heavy snowfall-3 to 5mts-that occurs here.After four hours the first campsite is reached-siyander thatch(3350mts), named after the stream that flows on its southern flank,encircled by dwarf rhododendron and kharsu oak groves.to the west, across the beas far below, the view is panoramic, encompassing the mighty peaks at the junction of the pir panjal and dhauladhar ranges: Hanuman tibba, patalsu, makarbay, shakarbay, friendship peak. seven sisters, tentu pass. Day two involves a 1000mts. ascent to bhrigu lake, over alpine pastures in a SE direction , then over rock fields left by the retreating glaciers. The lake is tucked away in a bowl and is not visible till you actually reach it -surrounded by snow fields and topped by a 100m. mound on which a holy cairn has been built. The second night is spent in siyander thatch again, and next day one can return the way one came ,or exist to the north, traversing the ridge, crossing the khanora and kothi nallahs and descending to gulaba. we saw nine monal pheasants on this stretch, so it's a route worth taking!
INDERHARA PASS. 4DAYS.60KMS, 2100 TO 4350MTS.
The towering wall of the Dhauladhars behind Dharamshala are cleft with a number of passes providing access to chamba district- Gaj, minkiani, kundli. inderhara pass at 4350mts is one of the most challenging. This trek can be done in four days but one should take one more day to enjoy the sheer majesty of the dhauladhars. trek starts at Galu devi, nine kms above mcleodgang, and follows a broad path through oak and rhododendron forest to the splendid pastures of triund (2975mts.) there is a forest rest house here and good tentinf spaces. Triund is on a spur jutting out of the main massif: at night the lights of Dharamsala are spread out below like a design on a magic carpet. on day two one starts climbing the main range: it is seven kms to illaqa got another two to lahesh cave (3500mts), a large cave where one camps for the night, just below the pass and above the tree line. An early start the next day will get you to inderhara pass in three hours: terrain is rocky and treacherous and caution is advised. A three hour sharp descent brings one to the camp site of chhata parao(3700mts). from here it is 14kms to the village of kwarsi which has a trekker's hut and forest hut. The last day's is a gentel descent of 15kms. through grasslands to choli on the chamba- Holi road.
BARA BANGAL VIA THAMSAR PASS 6DAYS.90KMS,2000 TO 5300MTS
A challenging trek to the last major land-locked regon of the state.starts from Billing.8kms. of the main pathankot-mandi highway 30kms from Baijnath.( Billing is famous for an international para gliding event held every october.)first stage is 14kms of pleasant hiking to the forest rest house at Rajagunda(8000feet) in the Uhl valley.day two is 16kms to panahartu(12000feet),situated in an icy, wind swept gorge which has to be crossed over permanent ice-bridges: the river Uhl takes birth here.it is four hours of strenuous climbing to the Thamsar pass next day: on the other side one has to walk and slide across a massive glacier at least a mile wide which feeds three lakes from which springs the Thamsar Nalla. path follows the Nalla down to Merh(1400feet)and then udeg(12000feet) where one can camp.Night are very cold at these heights and there is no wood to burn.on the fourth day one descends for three hours to the Ravi valley and the large twin villages of Bara Bangal.one trekking routes goes NE from here to the kullu valley over the kalihani pass.A day's rest at the lovely forest rest house here is adviseable.No one knows why these people, who are primarily shepherds, settled in this remote, inhospitable valley.one exist westward along the Ravi: the fifth day's trek is the most difficult,32kms over a succession of ridges, on a barely discernible path hundreds of feet above the river in its gorge, past tiny hamlets of khanar,dardi and khurdu.spend the night at a primitive but comfortable guest house at khurdu.next day it is only 8kms on a gently descending track to nayagram, on the left bank of the ravi, from where one can catch a bus for holi Bharmour or chamba.this is a amazing trek but requires a very high degree of physical fitness
CHOTA BANGAL. 2DAYS,30KMS.2000 TO 2400MTS
Chota bangal is the area south of the Thamsar pass, comprising the valleys of the Uhl and lambadug rivers. first day's trek is from Billing to Rajagunda, described above on day 2, instead of going up the Uhl,however, one goes down it, to the south,on the river's right bank, and then eastwards from slater pass.The pretty little hamlets of rowling,kothikod and Baragram-all prime vegetable growing areas-can be seen on the opposite bank.The track drops to 500feet above the river and goes through the large village of mayot 6kms. from slater. it has some splendid houses built only from cedar wood. it is 7kms further to Barot, a lovely walk along the uhl which is shaded by a thick growth of alnus,willow and pine .Barot is an idyllic, tiny village where the mysterious lambadug joins the uhl from the north-east.It is also famous for the first hydel project in north india -shanon HEP, built in the 1930's-and a trout hatchery.It has four rest houses and a couple of guest houses.from Barot one can take a taxi or bus to mandi/pathankot, or if one so wishes, continue the trek up the lambadug and on to the sari pass(3100mts)beyond which is the remote lug valley of kullu district, or over the even higher makori pass to the north-west to Bara Bangal 3days
30KMS,2DAYS 2200 TO 3636MTS.
Also known as Churchandni, this peak is perhaps the most easily accessible from the plains-nohradhar,one of its base points, is only about four hours from kalka on a very good road.However, it is adviseable to start the trek from the chopal side, in upper shimla.Drive upto sarain, 25kms from chopal and spend the night in a heritage forest rest house set amidst pretty orchards.Next day it is a four hour easy climb through dense deodar and blue pine forests to the famous temple on the peak.(actual peak, at 3636mts, is about 100mts above the temple, in a cluster of rocks, cairns and red prayer flags).spend the night here,for one gets an unimaginable 360* view at night-the lights of both chandigarh and shimla are clearly visible.one can stay in the serai, or pitch tents,or even stay in the wooden hut of the temple priest who gave up a cushy teaching job and came here more than 40years ago.it is an easy 18kms, walk the next day through uninterrupted forests,down to Nohradhar, 30kms, from Rajgarh in sirmour district.The entire churdhar range is a wildlife sanctuary.legend has it that it is on these mountains that Hanuman found the "sanjeevani buti" with which he brought laxman back to life.Even to the naked eye the mountain has an abundance of medicinal herbs and plants,Nohradhar has a good pwd rest house and frequent bus connections to solan/kalka/shimla/chandighar.
4DAYS,60KMS 2320 TO 5040MTS.
Connecting Bharmour area of chamba and pattan valley of lahaul. from roadhead at Hadsar, follow the Budhil stream for 12kms, to the twin villages of kugti where one can stay at a small forest rest-house.Day2is 12kms. to kuddi got(4000mts).past the famous keylang or kartik temple, after a not too easy crossing of the Budhil.The walk is over lovely pastures with a spectacular view of the mighty chamba kailash on the right.one can camp at the huge overhang cave at Duggi but it is adviseable to press on to kuddi got to shorten the next day's strenuous climb.The climb to the pass on day 3 is very difficult, over icefields, and extreme caution is advised. if the weather takes a turn for the worse it is sensible to abort the trek and return. It takes five hours to the pass and another 4kms to the camping site at khardu(3550mts):the descent is over glaciated and scree covered terrain, and very steep.The final day covers about 12kms .to Rappe village on the banks of the chandrabhaga river, in the pristine pattan valley with its fields of potato and pea spread out like a colourful quilt. The river is crossed over a bridge to shansha village which is on the road connecting keylong, udaipur and manali.
KINNER KAILASH PARIKRAMA.
4DAYS, 70KMS 2800 TO 5240MTS.
Performed by both Buddhists and Hindus, a parikrama second only to that of Mt.Kailash. August and september are the best times.Trek begins at Thangi on the right bank of the Tedong, about four hours by road from Reckong peo.It is 10kms to lambar (2950mts), all along the steep charang khad. Day 2 takes one 20kms to the larger village of charang (3400mt), situated just above the confluence of the charang and shurtingting streams.There is a rest house here and a gompa where pilgrims receive blessinds before moving on .Day 3(13kms)involves crossing the highpastures of charang and ascending up a stream to lalanti (4300mts). camping on its left bank.Day 4 (27kms)is the most difficult, ascending more than a thousand mts, over immense rockfails,past the snout of a glacier on the right, and then clawing one's way up a steep, scree slope to the charang pass(5240mts)The view from the top is awesome.from the saddle it is a steep descent of almost 2000mts to chitkul(3400mts). the last village in the sangla valley and the road-head.Across the Baspa river one can see the huge, verdant pastures known as "kandas" which offer infinite trekking and camping possibilities themselves. High above is the rupen pass, guarding the western flanks to the remote Dodra kawar valley. conclude the trek by worshipping at the temple of the chitkul devi and offering thanks .Incidentally ,beyond charang one is prohibited from plucking any wild flowers or shrubs by an edict of the Devi ! one can stay at the rest houses in either chitkul or sangla, 24km down the valley. from there it is a fantastically beautiful drive to karcham, and on to shimla.
dodra-kwar over chanshal pass 3days.55kms.24oomts
Road head/base camp is at larot 2400mts, in the untouched pabbar valley,about 35kms from rohru.There is a good forest house at Larot.first day trek is of 18kms ,eastwards,over the chanshal pass to Dodra village.The western slopes of the chanshal massif are covered withdense forests,tapering off to velvet-smooth pastures on top.There's a small stone temple on top.The other, eastern flank is barren and rock strewn, but after a descent of about 500mts the forest claim the landscape again.Dodra 2400mts, is a fairly large village with a very basic forest hut.it is perched above the Rupin river, and straight across the valley is the village of kwar 2300mts, 8kms. away and the second day's destination.kwar is a much larger village with its own heli-pad and sdm.it also has a very well furnished, three roomed rest house.The temples at Dodra and kwar are worth seeing: their exteriors are covered with the mounted heads of various wild animals,most of them a rarity nowadays.from kwar one has two options;the easier one is to follow the rupin downstream for 28kms in a SE direction, emerging in naitwar in uttaranchal.from here one can get a bus for dehradoon or chopal/shimla.the more interesting,and adventurous,journey however,is to aim for the Rupin pass, beyond which is the sangla valley of kinnaur.continue up the rupin on day3,cross it at jiskoon, and camp at jakha 2600mts,the last village in the valley,now fully converted to the Radhaswamy way of lifeday4is a hard,15km climb to the pastures of saribassa below the pass:there are caves where one can camp. next day one reaches the rupin pass4750mts.over moraine and scree.from there it is downhill all the way to sangla, over the lovely alpine pasturesknown as sangla kanda.
one of the most religious destinations in the state,visited by thousands each years.A motorable roads goes upto hadsar,18kms from the sub-divisional headquarters of bharmour. well defined track from Hadsar, gradual ascent of three hours brings up the flat camping ground of dhancho.one can either camp here or push on to the lake.the climbs gets steeper from through bander ghati ,across gauri nallah, past gaurikund where it is customary for ladies to take a dip .the track has been much improved by the many streams of snow melt cascading down the flanks of the massive range behind.on a clear day one can see mount kailash to the north: the devout consider themselves blessed if they get a sighting of the peak which is usually wrapped in thick clouds. camping here is a special experience, especially if the night is clear.one can return to bharmour in one day.
FIRST AID KIT FOR TREKKING
TREKKING FIRST AID KIT
TAPE (adhesive or paper) 1
SEWING NEEDLE 1
4"X4" GAUZE PADS 10
LARGE STERILE DRESSING 1
BETADENE ANTISEPTIC 1 BOTTEL
ANTACID TABLETS 10
NASAL DECONGESTANT 10
SOLVING PROBLEMS WITH THE FIRST AID KIT
UPPER RESPIRATORY INFECTIONS ( COLDS)
THROAT LOZENGES ( STREPSILS)
BLISTERS OF SKIN INFECTION
ANTTISEPTIC ( BETADINE)
RASH OR INSECT BITES
TABLETS – FLUCONZOLE
ROLLED COTTON BANDAGES
PARACETAMOL / CROCIN
LOW READING THERMOMETER
ACUTE MOUNTAIN SICKNESS ( AMS )
GENERAL MEDICAL PROBLEMS
CONSTIPATION CREMAFFIN LIQUID
URINARY TRACT INFECTION BACTRIM OR AMPICILLIN
VAGINITIS MYCOSTATIN VAGINAL TABLETS
HEMORRHOIDS ANUSOL – HC CREAM OR SUPPOSITORIES
CONJUNCTIVITIS NORFLOXACIN EYE DROP
INTERNAL EAR INFECTION ANDRE EAR/EYE DROP
EAR CANAL INFLECTION GENTAMYCIN EAR DROP
TREKKING AROUND SARAHAN
SARAHAN – WANGTU TREK
This is an easy and pleasant trek of 4 to 5 days along the old Hindustan – Tibet road. According to mrs. Penelope chetwode, it is one of the most beautiful walks in the world ; from sarahan the trail leads through the typical villages of sungra and nechar where a few ancient temples are located. There are several rest houses along the route, some dating back to 1890; they have been providing shelter to travellers and eplorers on their way to Tibet during all these years. One of the main attractions of this trail is the local colour and the traditional way of life of the inhabitants.
Best period ; april to june and august 15 to October 15th
1st day ;- sarahan 1920,mts – chora 1638,mts …..16kms
The trail follows the metalled road down to jeori for about 1kms. After a sharp bend in the road, the trail branches off to the right and continues north –east along the Hindustan – Tibet road. The path leads through forests of pine, horse –chestnut, oak and rhododendron. The trail is fairly level to start with but after a few kilometres it descends and crosses two streams; it continues down gently to the chora forest rest house. An ancient temple of hirma devi is located 300mts below the rest house.
2nd day ;- chora – tranda 1800mts ……8kms
Again , this path is a fairly level walk for the first 6kms after which it climbs steeply for 2kms to reach the forest rest house of tranda, situated on the top of a ridge.
3rd day ;- tranda – paunda 1830mts ……….10kms
This is a pleasant walk through thick pine forests.the trail goes along the edge of a precipice as far as solding nala, which is crossed by a bridge. The trail then crosses another stream before climbing gradually to meet a metalled road that links the new Hindustan – Tibet road with the villages of sungra and nechar. The p.w.d. rest house at paunda was built in 1890.
4th day ;- paunda – nechar 1950mts……12kms
Nechar is an easy walk of 12kms the paunda rest house. After 3kms , one comes to the ancient temple of sungra, which is built in pagoda style and stands amidst dense pine forests. The rest house at nechar is 6kms further on . the villages and temple of nechar are situated 3kms beyond the rest house. The temple is dedicated to the goddess ukha or usha
5th day ;- nechar – wangtu 1830mts ……5kms
The trail descends from the temple site for about 4hrs to join the new Hindustan – Tibet road at wangtu 31’ 32n, 78’ 01e . from there one can take a bus and return to Shimla or to sarahan .
WANGTU – PIN PARVATI PASS TREK
AN ADVENTUROUS and almost unexplored trail commences from wangtu, 1830mts, 31’ 32 n, 78’ 01 e ; after crossing shakarof pass 5022mts, and the pin parvati pass 5319mts, it reaches kullu.
Best period; august 1 to September 30
The trail heads northwards from chora 31’ 34 n, 77’51 e , about 10kms further down the valley from wangtu, goes down to the Sutlej river, crosses it by a ropeway and climbs up to the village of bara khamba, situated in the rupi valley. From there the path follows the shorang gad along its left bank for a few kms, climbs steeply away from the river and enters a side valley to the north – east;it reaches the secluded village of kumrang. From there onwards the route is very strenuous. It leads over moraines and small glaciers, crosses the high snow covered kamba khango pass and the kalang setal glacier. The trail then climbs up to the shakarof pass 5022mts and descends to the ghurguru camping ground, situated on the south bank of the pin river, ghurguru stands on the main southwards trail coming from kaza. The route from the camping ground to kullu over pin parvati pass is the same as in the kaza – pin parvati trek.
TREKKING IN SANGLA VALLEY
SANGLA VALLEY TREK
There is regular bus service between karchham and sangla 2680mts. The road winds its way through a narrow valley and round precipitious bends to arrive at sangla, a fairy large village with a forest rest house the old fort of kamru is situated a few kms north of sangla.
The village of rakcham 2900mts is approached after a level walk of 8kms through dense forests, rakcham to chitkul 3450mts is a gradual climb of 18kms via mastrang. Now chitkul is connected by a motorable road with sangla. There is a forest rest house at chitkul. The region beyond chitkul is a land of rock , snow and glaciers . the trail this route lies in prohibited area from chitkul continues to surthi, turns north – east and crosses yumrang pass 5510mts into Tibet. This also was an old trade route, though not as important as that of shipki –la.
Best period ; may, june and august end to October 15th
1 ;- karchham – sangla via shibaling pass 31’ 24 n, 78 ‘ 13 e .
This is an easy trek of 4 to 5 days, which takes you through the beautiful countryside of baspa valley. The trail from karchham climbs steeply towards the south for 8kms to reach sapni village. A temple dedicated to the snakes god is situated here. The surroundings of sapni are heavily wooded. Next day the trail to barua passes through apple orchards and involves many ups and downs. Situated 8kms from sapni, it also has a temple in the centre of the village. From barua, the path decends for 2kms to the barua nala and , after crossing it by a small bridge, goes up and down for another 8kms. From there it is a steep climb to chasu village 3100mts.
From chasu to dumar 3800mts is a continuous ascent of 5kms through birch forests. Dumar is a camping ground where shepherds graze their sheeps and have built a few temporary shelters. Shibaling pass 3980mts is a continuous but gradual climb of 3kms from dumar. From the pass one can enjoy a vista of snow peaks all around. The trail then discends for 6kms to reach sangla kanda. One can bypass sangla kanda and continue to sangla, which is 7kms further on from sangla kanda.
2 ;- sangla – harsil trek via lamkhaga pass 5284mts
From sangla the trail is the same as that for the baspa valley trek as far as surthi. From there the trail for lamkhaga pass turns south and after a strenuous trek of about 14kms, reaches the pass. The last stretch up to the pass is very steep. After that the trail follows the jalandhri gad down to harsil road – head, near gangotri. One can also cross over another 5151mts high pass located to the east of lamkhaga pass.
3;- morang –chitkul trek via charang pass 5266mts
This is a medium trek of 7 to 8 days that follows the north and east sides of the kinner kailash and phawarang massifs. The trail passes through the tirung gad valley and crosses charang pass to reach chitkul in baspa valley.
The trail starts from morang, ehich can be reached by bus from kalpa. There is a provision store and rest house at morang. The trail follows the left bank of the Sutlej river, for a short way until confluence with tirung gad. From there the trail turns south –east and after going through a narrow valley, comes to thangi. The journey from morang to thangi can be done also by jeep. Thangi is a small village where mules can be hired for the trek.
The path leaves thangi and passes through barren mountainscape until it reaches rahtak camping ground. From there the track turns towards the south -west and climbs steeply to charang pass 5266mts . after descending alongside the rock- strewn stream on the other side, the trail terminates at chitkul in baspa valley. From chitkul to karchham is the same as described in the baspa valley trek.
4 ;- rupa valley – spiti valley trek
This is 7 to 8 days trek which starts from shi asu 31’43 n , 78 ‘ 32 e situated on the Hindustan – Tibet road; the village can be reached by bus from kalpa . at shi asu there are a few eating shops, a provision store and a pwd rest house.
Best period ;- august 1 to September 30
The track from shi asu to sangnam heads n.w. and is a gradual climb of 9kms . sangnam is a large village with a few shops and a temple. From there to ropa 2925 mts is another gradual ascent of 6kms through apricot orchards. This is the last village on this route. Essential provisions and kerosene oil is available here. The trail continues up along the ropa gad crosses a stream before rangbar camping ground about 14kms from ropa village. From rangbar, it is a stiff climb of about 4kms to get to panktil 4010 mts , which stands high up overlooking the confluence of the ropa gad and the chuktanjan gad flowing down from n.w. a few shepherds’ huts are also located there. From panktil the trail follows the shepherds’ track northwards, dropping gradually along the course of the ropa gad to reach sumdo thatch 3660,mts; this is a beautiful meadow over looked by the peaks of manirang 6593mts and singikang
The trail then leaves the ropa gad and climbs steeply for 300mts on to a rocky ridge, which it traverses; then it descends to the pamchung camping ground 3960mts. A big overhang can be seen between sumdo thatch and pamchung; it is customary camping site for shepherds during the journey.
The next stage from pamchung to rankali 4420mts is again a stiff climb of about 4kms. Rankali is at the foot of the manirang pass, and from there the trail continues through the centre of a gully . the climb to the manirang pass 5600mts is long and gradual and takes about 8hrs. the manirang peak 6593mts stands to the north – east of the pass. From the pass the trail drops steeply to sapona in spiti valley, then goes on to mane village, situated on the right bank of the spiti river.
A few kms beyond, the trail crosses the spiti river over a bridge between sichling and puh and meets the main road for manali and Shimla. From there one can take a bus either for manali over the kunzam and rothang passes or for Shimla via wangtu and Rampur.
KINNER KAILASH PARIKARAMA CIRCUIT TREK
The following 3 routes are used by the devotees for the kailash parikarama. So the exact heights and distances of stages are different. The kinner kailash has religious significance for a huge ‘ rock lingam ‘ of kailashpati mahadev. The circuit around the whole range attracts many pilgrims every year. The parikarama begins from kalpa via tirung valley and back to kalpa via sangla valley. There is a road upto thangi and the actual trekking begins from here.
– kalpa – thangi 2966mts ………50kms
By bus , school building can be used for night
2 ;- thangi – lambar 2896 mts ………12kms
Slightly going down.
3 ;- lambar – charang 3506mts ……..12kms
The trek is through different terrain.
4 ;- charang- chitkul3450 mts …..14kms
Over charang ghati 5242mts gradual climbing to the pass and then easy descending
5;- chitkul- rakchham 2900mts ……..12kms
Jeepable road in operation during season
6;- rakchham – sangla 2590mts ……….14kms
Along the baspa river in the sangla valley . rest house available
7;- sangla – karchham 1980mts …………17kms
Through the sangla valley with goodview of mountain ranges
8;- karchham – kalpa 2670mts
By bus. Here the route joins the main Hindustan Tibet road.
1;- shong – thangi – ribba 2745mts ……….24kms
School and village for stay.
2;- ribba – thangi 2966mts ………..22kms
It is connected by road. Village and school for stay.
3;- thangi – charang 3506mts …………23kms
Accommodation is available.
4;- charang – lalanti 4421mts ………..18kms
Camping place / hut available
5;- lalanti – chitkul 3450mts ……20kms
Over the charang ghati 5242mts. Rest house available
6;- chitkul – sangla 2590mts ………….26kms
Jeepable road, r.h. available. Sangla is a green and beautiful valley
7;- sangla – karchham 1980mts ………….17kms
Through sangla valley with charming view of mountains r.h. available
8;- karchham – kalpa 2900mts ………27kms by bus
1;- kalpa – thangi 2966mts ………………50kms
By bus. There is a villagewhere one can stay
2;- thangi – kunnu 3375mts ………..20kms
Can stay in aschool building for the night
3;- kunnu – lalanti 4421mts …………..20kms
School or panchayat room can be used for night halt
4;- lalanti – chitkul 3450mts ………….20kms
Rest house is available
5;- chitkul – sangla 2590mts ………20kms
Rest house is available
6;- sangla – kalpa 2900mts ………..20kms
Via mehbar across baspa river
TREKKING ROUTES NEAR KAZA
Some of the trekking routes
1;- langza – hikkim – comic
These three villages situated at heights between 13,500 ft and 14,400 ft above m.s.l
Favourite route for those looking for fossils. Near comic village is famous thangyud monastery. The older structure was near hikkim village. But this dilapidated structure was brought down in an earthquake in 1975. Some ruins still remain . one can go by road small vehicles only from kaza to langza 8.5kms ; then walk to hikkim – thangyud gompa – comic 8kms and finaly walk down to kaza from comic 6kms . alternatively one can walk upto comic from kaza 6kms ; then walk to thangyud gompa - hikkim and back to kaza 9kms
Those wanting to make a make a night halt should carry tents etc. medical worker is available at hikkim village.
2;- kaza – pin parvati trek
It is a strenuous trek of 8 to 9 days through the barren and desolate region of the pin parbati valleys. There is no habitation along the trail for many days. Porters should be hired at manali.
Best period ;- august 1 to September 20
The bus from kaza crosses the spiti river near attargo , 12kms from kaza and just before lingti. From there it is a 13kms rough and dusty journey to guling along the pin river 3kms up stream from guling , a foot trail reaches the parahio nala; this river is crossed with the aid of pulleys and the path continues to sangam 3753mts where a pwd rest house is located. The trail from sangam to mud is again very rough and strenuous, mud is a small village of about 30 houses situated approximately 13kms from sangam . the following days walk leads through beautiful grazing grounds in the upper pin valley. After crossing the larang nala by a boulder – stream track, the trail reaches ghurguru camping ground. From there the trail becomes strenuous and leads over loose stony ground and , after crossing many turbulent streams, reaches the snout of the pin glacier. The trail then climbs steeply over snow fields. Towards the top of the pin- parbati pass the snow becomes very soft and one sinks knee deep into it. The top of the pass is litered with boulders.
The trail continues down from the pass to the parbati glacier, mantalai camping ground 4074mts is situated just, beyond the snout of the parvati glaciers and there ia a large rock shelter that can accommodate more than 30 people. The trail continues downwards and passes through the meadows of kach thatch and bakar bihar thatch to reach pandu bridge 3741mts. One can continue down alongside the parbati river as far as manikaran, 1700mts , 32’ 01 n, 77’ 22 e where boiling hot water springs are a welcome sight. There is hotel parvati at manikaran, also a gurudwara sikh temple where one may stay. Kullu , the capital of kullu valley, is a three hrs 45 kms bus journey from manikaran .
3;- kibber 4205 mts – gete 4270m trek
Situated at about (4270 m )m.s.i gate is the higest permanently inhabited village of spiti .A jeepable road goes there ansd also a walk of about 6 km from kibber through alpine pastures takes you there .alternatively one can walk up from ki – monastery tents/sleeping bags .basic food provisions are available at kibber
4 :- KAZA (3600 m )
Kibber (4205 m ) ….18 km
Kibber (4205 m) highest inhabited village in the world where inspite of vagaries of nature temperature drops below -35 ‘ c people still are surviving and continuously repeating the universal hymn ‘om mani padme hum…
LADARCHA is the name of an open ground beyond kibber village where a traditional trade used to be held in earlier times .then the fair was mare a trade fair where people from ladakh ,Tibet spiti kullu and kinnaur is much reduced instead the fair is an epitome of spitian culture and way oflife .