For the last two days, we camp in spectacular campsites, one being on the southern edge of the Tso Moriri (4510 m), a high altitude lake 27 km long and nearly 8 km wide. This lake is the breeding ground for the bar-headed geese, black-necked crane and the Brahminy ducks. We also visit one of the Changpa settlements in a bowl-style meadow high above Karzog, where they breed pashmina, one of the trade items over these high passes.
This is a high altitude trip (max. height 5600 m). Please contact us to discuss the implications of this and your own personal fitness. On arrival to India you will be met at the airport. Depending on your personal itinerary you will be transferred to the train station or hotel.
Day 1: Arrive in Delhi - Overnight train to Kiratpur Sahib
Arrive in Delhi airport. Transfer from the airport to the hotel. Spend the afternoon and evening relaxing in your hotel room or taking in the sights of Delhi. Evening transfer to the train station for the overnight sleeper train to Kiratpur Sahib at 23.20. We travel by A/C sleeper train, the best and most comfortable way to travel overland in India.
Day 2: Kiratpur Sahib to Manali (2050 m): 9 hrs
Arrive in Kiratpur Sahib at 05.54 and drive to Manali. We first drive through the Shivalik Mountain ranges and then through Middle Himalayan ranges as we approach Manali. Towards the latter half the drive takes one through the lush Kullu valley famous for apples, peaches and plums. Overnight hotel.
Day 3: Manali to Chhatru (3558 m) 2/3 hrs
Today we continue to gain altitude, the first half of the day is an uphill drive to reach the Rohtang Pass (4000 m). After we cross the pass we descend to the Chandru River. We following the river for the rest of the day until we reach Chattru, a spectacular drive. In the evening we recommend that you go for a short walk along to help with altitude acclimatisation. Overnight camp.
Day 4: Chhatru to Kibber (4120 m): 6/7 hrs
We start early and drive further north into the mountains gaining more height along the way. The drive is a bumpy but beautiful, with plenty of photo opportunities. We stop by the famous Kye Gompa enroute and get the opportunity to drink chai with the monks that live there. Overnight camp / guest house.
Day 5: Kibber to Dumla (4500 m): 2/3 hrs
This is our first day trekking and our first experience of exercising at high altitude. We walk down to a small river and up through the steep gorge bed to reach our camp at the village of Dumla. It is a short day's trek, arriving in time for lunch. We use it to acclimatise to the high altitudes. Overnight camp.
Day 6: Dumla to Thaltak (4900 m): 3/4 hrs
Another short days trek to acclimatise with around 400 m height gain. It is a steep ascent gaining altitude in a fairly short span of time. Camp at Thaltak meadow with great views of the surrounding mountains. We encourage another short hike in the afternoon to help acclimatisation. Overnight Camp.
Day 7: Thaltak to Borochen (5020 m): 7 hrs
This is a long day’s walk: 14 km in total. We gain about 400m in altitude and it allows us to further acclimatise. We reach Borochen by mid afternoon and relax for the evening enjoying the surrounding views and can see the beginning of the trail up to the pass. Overnight Camp.
Day 8: Borochen to Parang La (5600 m) to Dak Karzong (4950 m): 5 hrs
We make an early start to reach the pass. The trail is demanding to start and the last 4 km to the pass are quite steep. Parang La is the pass along an old trade route joining Spiti and Ladakh. It offers great views of the Changthang valleys in Spiti and Parilungi, a distinctive peak ahead and also the first visible Ladakhi peak. After taking in all the views we descend to the source of the Pare Chu River, crossing the glacier on the Ladakhi side of the pass for about an hour. On crossing the pass we experience a change of landscape, from the steep gorges of Spiti to the broad plains of Ladakh. Overnight Camp.
Day 9: Dak Karzong to Datang Yongma (4830 m): 3 hrs
Today our trek follows the course of the Pare Chu River as it winds through a wide valley, with high banks left by the river in flood. There is an abundance of flora on todays walk. We camp at Datang Yongma.
Day 10: Datang Yongma to Racholamo (4600 m): 6/7 hrs
We continue along the riverside trail with similar surroundings as yesterday, reaching Racholamo in mid afternoon. We lose a small amount of height during the day. Overnight camp at Racholamo.
Day 11: Racholamo to Norbu Sumdo to Chumik Shilde (4530 m): 5/6 hrs
We continue on to Chumik Shilde passing through Norbu Sumdo. We cross the Pare Chu River and head in the direction of Tso Moriri Lake. There is a good possibility of meeting yak trains transporting goods in the area. Arrive at our camping spot in the afternoon and enjoy a relaxed evening. Overnight camp.
Day 12: Chumik Shilde to Kiangdom (4540 m): 4 hrs.
Today we walk across the plains to the southern edge of the oval-shaped high-altitude Tso Moriri lake at Kiangdom, named after the kiangs (wild Tibetan asses) that roam freely here. The lake is a breeding ground for many rare migratory birds. It is a short day’s walk and gives a great opportunity to photograph what is one of the most beautiful places of the entire trip. Overnight camp at Kiangdom.
Day 13: Kiangdom to Karzog (4570 m): 7 hrs
We start early and walk along the shores of the salt lake Tso Moriri. The view of the lake with Lungser Kangri (6666 m) in the background is spectacular. We try to arrive in Karzog as early as possible to avoid the strong winds that are common in the afternoon. On arrival to Karzog we can visit the ancient monasteries and relax after a hard trek! Overnight Camp.
Day 14: In Karzog: Rest Day
We visit the Changpas, nomadic herdsmen of the area, with their valuable pashmina goats. These men still only use yak skin huts to take shelter from the harsh conditions. Walk around the town or visit Tso Moriri. Overnight Camp.
Day 15: Drive Karzog to Mahe to Leh (3500 m): 8 hrs
We take the long picturesque drive to Leh, the capital of Ladakh, along the upper section of the Indus river, which India takes its name from. Overnight hotel.
Day 16: In Leh: Sightseeing Day
Today is a leisurely day with opportunities to visit the Tibetan markets and shop for gifts and souvenirs. The surrounding Zanskar mountain range provides a wonderful backdrop to the markets and you may be tempted to return in the future to Climb Stok Kangri (6153 m). Overnight hotel.
Day 17: Fly Leh to Delhi
The final day of our trip includes a one hour flight over the Greater Himalayan Range with fantastic views of K2, at 8611 metres, the second highest mountain on earth. Upon arrival to Delhi transfer from the domestic to international airports in time for your flight home. Trip ends.
Note: Please contact us for sightseeing in Delhi, or a trip to the Taj Mahal at the start or end of this trip. We can also tailor this trip with a rafting expedition or wildlife safari.
Includes airfare from Delhi to Leh
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