Brief Description

Chadar Trek in Ladakh is like no other trek in the Himalayas. Walking on a frozen thick glass like river, with dramatic mountains on both sides, is an experience of a lifetime. At only 11150 ft altitude Chadar Trek almost feels like an expedition to the North Pole, where the temperatures drop down to -30 degrees at night, the ration is transported on sledges, you find refuge in caves and life blossoms on survival instincts, making it an eminently ‘do before you die’ trip. The Chadar trek allows you to get to know the Zankari culture up close through the locals you meet on the trek and experience their hospitality. One of the highlights of the Zanskar frozen river trek is the most magnificent waterfall frozen completely from top to bottom called Nerak waterfall. The best time for Chadar trek is from mid-January to mid-February, that is when the Zanskar river freezes and you get to walk on massive slabs of ice spreading for miles and miles. The landscapes and overall experience will leave their imprints on your hearts forever. When it comes to trekking In India, Chadar is the most glamorous trek. From 2019 onwards, the local administration has made it mandatory for every Chadar Trek participant to undergo a medical examination at SNM Hospital, Leh post which a fitness certificate would be granted. We would provide more information closer to the departure date on this aspect. Continue reading here for all important information like - Chadar Trek Temperature, Route Map, Itinerary, Photos, and Videos. We have some essential blogs linked at the end to help you prepare for Chadar - The best trek in India.

Arrive in Leh ( 9,800 FT, 0 Kms Trek )

The flight to Ladakh is absolutely scenic. Arrive in Leh by 12 PM. You get a birds-eye view of the entire city and the layers of snow-clad mountains will help you understand why it is impossible to reach Ladakh by road in winters. You will feel a drop in the temperature the minute you land at the Leh airport, which is also one of the highest airports in the world. Collect your bags and check in to your assigned hotels. Today’s day is extremely important for acclimatization, so try to stay outdoors as much as possible but try not to exert yourself. Leh is quite in the winters and very few shops and eateries are open for business. You can buy dry fruits from some of the shops at a very reasonable price and some woolen clothes too if you like. Take a stroll through the colorful Leh market during the day, and if possible, try to walk till Leh Palace and Namgyal Monastery. The colorful flags fluttering in the air and the view of the entire city from Namgyal Monastery is not to be missed. Drink plenty of fluids during the day to help you with acclimatization and prepare yourself to start the trek tomorrow

Rest & Acclimatization in Leh

Wake up early and Start journey with healthy Breakfast. We will be riding both on beautiful highway and mountains we will cross Asia’s largest tunnel Chenani Nashri tunnel. Later Reach Srinagar by evening. Explore Srinagar (Dal lake) and beautiful gardens and floating market .Enjoy evening by Dal lake. Enjoy Dinner and overnight stay in 3 star hotel.
Route : Pathankot - Chenani - Nashri Tunnel - Ramban – Banihal – Jawahar Tunnel – Srinagar.
Places to see : Chenani Nashri tunnel - Jawahar tunnel - Dallake - Mugal garden .

Medical Checkup in Leh

Today, you will have to get the mandatory medical checkup at the Tourist Information Center, obtain your NOC from ALTOA and Wildlife Department permit. Overnight stay in a hotel in Leh.

Leh to Shingra Koma via Bakula (10,550 FT, 70 Kms)

Leh to Shingra Koma via Bakula (10,550 FT, 70 Kms drive to Bakula, 2-3 hrs trek to Shingra Koma) Today, we finally start on our Zanskar frozen river adventure. You drive along the beautiful Indus river and get a chance to see the confluence of the Indus and Zanskar river at Nimmu. We are going to cover a total distance of 70 km by road and you will experience a few jaw-dropping moments as the vehicle makes its way around the narrow hairpin bends. It should take about 3 hours to reach Bakula and as you get closer, the inspiring sight of the frozen Zanskar will get you excited about the trek. Your leaders will soon give you tips on how to walk on Chadar. It takes a while to get the hang of it. We call it the ‘Penguin Walk’. Walk around as much as possible, it will help you get comfortable walking on a glassy ice sheet. You will fall a few times, and that is part of the overall experience. You will also be taught how to get inside your double layered sleeping bags before sundown. Today is an exciting day, as it is your first day of trekking on the frozen Zanskar river. You will get plenty of sunshine during the day, so wear comfortable clothes. The best thing about Chadar trek is that you walk on a flat surface throughout the trek. There are no steep ascents or descents and very little chance of catching AMS since you don’t gain any altitude throughout the trek. If you are comfortable today, you are already acclimatized and you should be able to finish the entire trek without any major issues. Depending on the weather, the Chadar changes its forms. It can be hard and glass like in some patches, or it can have a layer of powder snow on it giving you a better grip, or you could face thin ice in certain areas, so you might have to walk in slush or dodge that entire patch and go over the rocks on the side of the river. Walk together as a team and follow the sledge route. Always follow the sledge route used by the porters as it is the safest route on Chadar. You will get to your next campsite within 3-4 hours, depending on your speed. Your leaders will take you through a few learning modules about being in the mountains. You will have the campsite to yourself to explore and take pictures for the rest of the day. Camp overnight at Shingra Koma

Shingra Koma to Tibb (10,760 FT, 14 Kms)

The biggest challenge from here on will be getting out of your warm sleeping bags and stepping outside your tent in freezing cold weather. The Zanskari people are well known for their hospitality and your staff will wake up way before you to ensure you have a hot cup of tea and a warm meal ready before you leave. Today is going to be a long walking session, you will cover a total 14 km on Chadar and it should take you about 6 to 7 hours to reach your next campsite. Make sure you fill your thermos with warm water before you leave, all liquids tend to freeze in this region given the extreme temperatures, so a thermos is extremely important. You will only get sunshine around 9-10 am, that too in patches as the giant rocky mountains on both sides of the Zanskar river tend to hide the sun. Marvel at the views as you walk in this huge valley with nothing but pure crisp air and huge rocks on both sides of you. The color of the Zanskar river flowing in the middle is vibrant and deep blue and sometimes you will see water flowing right beneath you under the thick ice sheet. You will see a few frozen waterfalls along the way. Your staff will cook you a warm meal mid-way, so fill your bellies and enjoy a hot cup of tea. By 3 pm, you’ll be at Tibb, and the last 200-meter walk is extremely gorgeous. Camp overnight at Tibb

Tibb to Nerak (11,150 FT, 12 KMs Trek)

Today is the most important day on the Chadar trek because you will get a chance to see the-mother-of-all-waterfalls ‘Nerak waterfalls’ after reaching your campsite. It is going to be another long day, so you will start early. Aim to reach Nerak campsite before 3pm, so you get plenty of time at Nerak waterfall. The sun will again be shunned from the Zanskar valley, so keep moving to keep your body warm. The ice in various patches is broken in the middle of the frozen river, forming geometrical structures of various shapes and sizes, which are fascinating to see. You will have lunch inside a cozy cave mid-way, a cave huge enough to fit 12-15 people comfortably. Reach Nerak campsite, have some snacks and make your way to the gigantic Nerak waterfall. It should take you about 30 minutes to get there, and you might see a few domestic Yaks grazing the higher grounds along the way. Right next to the waterfalls is a bridge across the river, which takes you up to Nerak village. It’s fascinating to see the old wooden bridge under the new concrete/steel bridge, giving you a chance to see the age-old constructions. Spend some time marveling at the sight of Nerak waterfall, before heading back to the campsite for your dinner. Camp overnight at Nerak.

Nerak to Tibb (10,760 FT, 12 Kms Trek)

Today, your trace your steps back to Tibb campsite. And if you think you are going to see the same frozen ice sheet again, think again. The frozen Zanskar river reacts to the slightest change in the temperatures, and constantly keeps changing its form. You will not be able to recognize the sights, it all seems so different on the way back. You might walk on a glass-like surface or patches and patches of slush, depending on the weather. Throughout the way, you will see the local porters wearing the traditional woolen robes called ‘Gonchas’, with colourful beads around their neck and their traditional hats. It’s fascinating to see the locals negotiating on the frozen river, as they seem to walk like the wind, absolutely comfortable with the slippery uneven icy surface. They will greet you using the local phrase ‘Julley’ which is the Ladakhi term for hello/welcome. You might also catch a few locals singing traditional Ladakhi songs while pulling their sledges and enjoying the journey. Penguin walk your way to tibb and enjoy the rest of the day. Camp overnight at Tibb.

Tibb to Bakula (10,550 FT, 12.5 KMs trek). Drive to Leh.

Today is the last day of the Chadar trek, and we will hike to Bakula. It will take you about 7 to 8 hours to reach Bakula. From Bakula, we will drive back to Leh and that marks the end of the Chadar - The frozen river trek. Head back to the hotels, do a bit of last minute shopping before the market closes, and prepare to catch your flight as per your schedule. Stay at hotels in Leh.

Departure From Leh

We take our respective flights back home today. You will forever cherish the memories of one of the best treks in India.

Brief Description

The Markha Valley trek is one of the most fascinating treks in Ladakh. The trek takes you on a beautiful journey in the land of fluttering colorful prayer flags, mane walls, high passes, exotic wildlife, and unusual shear canyons. Not to forget the authentic villages you walk past, bringing you closer to the Ladakhi culture. The colourful rock formations found on the trail, along with the views of Stok and Zanskar mountains often leave people awe-struck. The best time to do Markha Valley trek is between the months of June and September. It is a challenging trek, with loads of stream crossings, steep ascents, and descents from two high passes and long day walk and is recommended for experienced trekkers. Gear up for a beautiful and culturally rich experience, and let the serenity of the Markha Valley's landscapes knock the stress out of your life. Scroll till the end for all information on Markha Valley Trek like - Markha Valley Route Map, Weather and temperature charts, photos, videos, and some amazing blogs.

Arrive in Leh. Rest & Acclimatization.

Arrive in Leh by 12 PM. Today is for rest & acclimatization. Being outdoors is recommended as it helps in the acclimatization process. Explore the local market of Leh. Have the local cuisine and enjoy shopping for dry fruits and local handicrafts.

Acclimatization in Leh

Explore the cultural and natural beauty of Leh. This will make you familiar with the town and also help in acclimatize to the weather. Leh is the center point of Ladakh and also a major town from where all expeditions begin. It is also a culturally rich place. There are dozens of monasteries and ancient temples that you can go around. They are located in and around the town. Enjoy the local cuisines which are a major attraction for travellers.

Drive to Zingchen. (1 Hour). Trek to Ganda La base (3-4 hours)

In the early morning hours, we will go by jeep to Zingchen. The drive will begin along an old jeep road into a parched and exposed region, so water and sunscreen are absolutely vital! After plodding through the shattered land we will enter the lush Zingchen Valley, where the Rumbak River flows into the mighty Indus. Today we will enter Hemis National Park where we may be fortunate to glimpse wildlife. The National park homes Snow Leopard, Lynx, Ladakhi Urial (a type of goat), Arghali (great Tibetan sheep), Bharal (blue sheep), Red Fox, Tibetan Wolf, Dhole (wild dog), Marmot and Mountain Hare. After paying the entrance fee, we will climb gradually through a beautiful gorge before reaching the valley leading to the village of Rumbak. Here we will stop at a tented teahouse run by women from the village. After a cup of warm tea, we will continue past the house of Yuruche before reaching camp at the base of Ganda La (4545m). From the campsite, there are spectacular views of Stok Kangri and the whole Stok range.

Ganda La base - Shingo via Ganda La 6-7 hours

After a light breakfast, we will begin our 2-hour ascent towards Ganda La (4900m). The usual chorten and prayer flags mark the top of the pass, where one may see Blue Sheep, Marmots and Arghali roaming the hills around. Views of the lofty Zanskar Range and the distant Himalaya Range are great as well. After a short rest, we will make a gradual descent to Shingo, where we will set camp for tonight

Shingo – Sara (5 hours)

Today, we will start by descending through a spectacular gorge to Skiu (3300m). Within this idyllic village lies an old monastery and ruins of an old castle, once a rest stop for the Royal family on their way to Srinagar. Following the Markha River, we will hike through the lovely valley on a fairly level path. The trail crosses the river at various points and passes winter settlements that contain Lhatos (religious shrines for local deities) and Mani walls (stones inscribed with Buddhist prayers). We arrive at our campsite by the afternoon.

Sara – Markha (4 hours)

During peak season a number of tented teahouses will be open for refreshment. Markha (3800m) is the largest village in the valley, consisting of around 20 houses, an old monastery, and a ruined fort. We arrive out campsite by afternoon.

Markha - Thachungtse (5-6 hours)

The Markha valley trail continues pass old stone-mills, a ruined castle and the auspicious monastery of Techa, which proudly perches upon a cliff that looms above Markha. The path then intersects the river several times before cutting through the last hamlets in the valley. After leaving the village of Umlung, we will be afforded our first view of mighty Mt. Kang Yatse (6400m), which will stay in sight until we cross Kongmaru La. After we break for lunch in the village of Hangkar (the last one in the valley), we will continue onward to the lovely green pasture of Thachungste (4100m), where we will make camp.

Thachungtse - Nimaling (4 hours)

Today the trail will lead us up to the beautiful plateau of Nimaling, where the people of the Markha Valley bring their herds to graze during the summer months. At 4700m, Nimaling is the highest camp (4600m) on the trek, giving us spectacular views of the huge peak of Kang Yatse to the right.

Nimaling - Shangsumdo via Kongmaru La (7 hours)

After a hearty breakfast, we will cross Kongmaru La (5200m), the highest pass on the trek, and from here we will have a wonderful view of the Indus Valley and Ladakh Range. The descent is quite steep, but will gradually level out as we enter Shang Gorge, with its fascinating rock formations. More river crossings bar our way before we arrive at the sour-spring of Chuskurmo (used in traditional medicine by the Amchi doctors). Camp overnight in Shang Sumdo. Drive from Sumdo to Leh takes about 2 hours. Reach Leh by evening. The trip ends here.

5Night & 6Days Ladakh Tour Plan LEH

  • Total Duration – 5 Nights / 6 Days
  • Maximum Altitude – 5602 mtrs. /18380 ft.
  • Grade – Easy
  • Best Season
  • Accommodation – Hotel/Guesthouse/Homestays; Organized Campsite
  • Food – As per Program
  • Distance – 520 KM

Things to Pack:-

Rucksack, cotton clothes, good trekking shoes, a warm jacket, Gloves, warmer, woolen or monkey cap covering head and ears, UV rays protected sunglasses, raincoat, extra socks, water bottle, torch, cold cream, sunscreen, toilet soap, towel, Medicines that you usually use.

Arriving in Leh

Early morning board flight to Leh. Upon arrival at the Leh Airport, you will be received by our representative and transferred to your hotel. Take Ladakhi Butter Tea and relax. Since you are arriving at 11000 ft, we strongly recommend taking complete rest on the first day where you should not indulge yourself in any strenuous activity. Rest of the day is free to acclimatize to the high altitude of Leh. Overnight at hotel

Sham Valley Trekking ( 3N/4D) Likir - Yangthang across Phobe La

Morning after breakfast you will be driven by taxi to Likir which is just 58 kms. Away. Likir Village (3650 mts.) is the starting point of our trek. Although the distance is short, the route is warm, without any shade or water and we need to traverse two passes. From Likir the route heads west up to Phobe La (3580m) and beyond this lies Sumdo village. The trail goes steadily upwards till you get to Chagatse La (3630m). Across the pass is the village of Yangthang (3630m) where we camp for the night, next to a stream. The Ridzong Monastery lies about an hour south of Yangthang

Yangthang Hemis Shukpachen across Tsermangchen La

Today is an easy walk despite the pass because both the approach and the descent are of gentle gradients. The trail heads north, descending for a bit, crossing a stream before climbing up west again to Tsermangchen La (3750m). After a short rest at the pass we head down to Hemis Shukpachen. The village, named after the grove of cedars, is one of Ladakhs prettiest. There are several sparkling streams surrounded by shady willows and large barley fields that provide a touch of green to the otherwise desolate, Rocky Mountains

Hemis Shukpachen - Ang across Mebtak La

Again this is a fairly easy day. The trail goes upward between two hillocks west of the village upwards until it veers south and climbs steeply up to the Mebtak La (3750m) marked by prayer flags. From the pass we head down the gorge to Ang, a charming village with apricot orchards, where we camp for the night.

Ang - Temisgam and Nurla

Today is the last day and very easy as its downhill all the way on to the main road. From Temisgam there would be a taxi waiting to take back everyone to Leh.

Depart from LEH

After breakfast, Depart to Leh airport to board the flight back for onward journey.

8Night & 9Days Ladakh Tour Plan LEH

  • Total Duration – 8 Nights / 9 Days
  • Maximum Altitude – 6153 m/ 20182 ft.
  • Grade – Challenging
  • Best Season - June to October
  • Accommodation – Hotel/Guesthouse; Organized Campsite
  • Food – On expedition – All meals included
  • Distance – 50 KM

Things to Pack:-

Rucksack, cotton clothes, good trekking shoes, a warm jacket, Gloves, warmer, woolen or monkey cap covering head and ears, UV rays protected sunglasses, raincoat, extra socks, water bottle, torch, cold cream, sunscreen, toilet soap, towel, Medicines that you usually use.

About The Trek

Your trek starts with the arrival in Leh. Spend some time to acclimatize with the beauty and weather. Leh is the place where you get the perfect combination of natural exquisiteness with cultural beauty. Staying here in the tents is a life time opportunity. You will rest here for one complete day and get adequate knowledge about all the possibilities and challenges of the trek from your guide. From here, you will trek to your destination Stok Kangri. Ascend climbing for 9-10 hours and you will reach at the top of the ridge.

This trek offers you the incredible trekking experience. We are the best trekking company in providing the finest customized deals to trekkers worldwide. We develop a schedule as per your requirements and needs. With us, you will experience the best trekking excursion every time. We not only plan your trip, but take care of every issue no matter big or small. Our motto is to create the most excellent trekking experience of your life.

Arriving in Leh

There are numerous options to arrive in Leh. You can come here all the way from New Delhi via road. Alternatively, you may also opt to take flights from New Delhi to Leh, or book trains to Jammu and complete the rest of the journey by road. On arrival in the town, Please provide travel plans on booking and we will arrange the pick up and transfer. Overnight at hotel.

LEH (Acclimatisation)

Day two is for orientation and briefing of the trek and to continue gathering energy for the ensuing Stok Kangri trek, and acclimatise to the cold weather, high altitude and diminishing oxygen levels. You can also utilise your free time to stroll through the town, and learn about its culture. You may see the raw beauty of the Ladakh plateau, shop at local markets or pay visits to numerous Buddhist stupas and monasteries nearby. Evening is free for leisure or individual activites. Enjoy a pleasurable overnight stay.

LEH – Chang - Ma

After breakfast, Reach Stok village after 30 mins drive from Leh. Start trek to Chang-ma (3900 mtrs/12,940 ft). Approximate trek time – 3-4 hours. Overnight Stay at Tents.

Chang - Ma to Mankarmo

After breakfast, Start trek to Mankarmo (4250 mtrs/13,940 ft). Approximate trek time – 4-5 hours. Overnight Stay at Tents.

Mankarmo - Stok Kangri (Base Camp)

After breakfast, trek to Stok Kangri Base Camp (5000 mtrs/16,400 ft). Approximate trek time – 2-3 hours. It will be a difficult ascent as the continuous gain in altitude will result in lessening levels of Oxygen. All along the hike, you will wind along rocky and narrow mountainous trails. Though you will face difficulty in climbing and breathing, the divine scenery will compensate generously for it, and make it a wonderful excursion. After you cross a hissing river, the trail will become wider and smoother, but will keep ascending. Along the way, you will see numerous alpine lakes, and their tiny ripples and waves will seem white due to the sunlight falling on them and illuminating them. You will also travel across mountainous meadows, where you may be able to see sheep grazing on lush grass.

On reaching the base camp, enjoy lunch and spend the rest of the day at leisure. There are a few smaller peaks here, which you may climb as a means of preparing yourself for the toll-taking ascent, which you will encounter later in your expedition. Relish dinner in the evening, and then retire for the night in the tents provided to you.

Rest, Acclimatisation and Training

This day is an easy day for trekkers. You would enjoy the time for going around and knowing the place to a much better extent. It is essentially a day to train for the upcoming trek and know the possibilities and challenges that are involved in it. Your trek leader and guide would let you know about all the different changes in the terrain.

Acclimatization walk (5,400 mtrs/17,700 ft) and back to Base Camp. Preparation for summit for the remaining day. The rest has been provided so that you are able to further acclimatise to the weather and topographical conditions, and also get the necessary information needed for scaling the summit. Post the briefing, explore the area, click pictures. Later after early dinner, sleep for 4-5 Hours at the Camp.

Base Camp (16400 ft.) To Stok Kangri (20182 ft.) Back to Base Camp

You should wakeup very early to start the climb. The route goes through glaciers and then comes to steep slopes to the summit ridge. This is a long climb, so you should be mentally strong and prepared psychologically. It would take somewhere between 9 to 10 hours for average climbers. Slow climbers may take another 2 to 3 hours in addition.

You reach the glacier after a gruelling hike of approximately three hours from the base camp. The real climb to the summit of Mount Stok Kangri begins here. To reach the top, you will climb for about two hours more along the southern face of the mountain. Remember to climb carefully as one little mistake can be dangerous.

From here, you will get a clear view of the summit and colourful Buddhist prayer flags decorating it. On reaching the top, look around and see the Karakoram Range in the north and the Zanskar Mountains in the south. Post enjoying your success and clicking photos, retrace the track back to the base camp. On arriving at the base camp, relax and enjoy your overnight stay.

Base Camp - Leh

The last phase of your Stok Kangri trek will make you travel for 12 km till you reach the village of Stok. On arrival in the village, board a vehicle and drive back to Leh. After you reach the town, transfer to your lodging and rest for the night.

Leh - Departure

In the morning, travel to the airport to board your onward flight, or drive to New Delhi by road via Manali or Srinagar.

Inclusions
  • Transport required in the trek
  • Highly advanced & certified mountaineering guide from Ladakh Hikes
  • Skilled Guide who has ample knowledge of the route.
  • Vegetarian meals on the trek (Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner)
  • Accommodation at Leh on Room only basis.
  • Cooks/Helper and other requisite staff.
  • Porters/mules for carrying common equipments (like rations/tents/utensils/)
  • Equipments – Tents on sharing basis / Sleeping bags / Sleeping Mats
  • Basic First aid Kit.
  • Forest Permits and camping charges
Excludes
  • Personal Porters for carrying trekker’s backpacks
  • Personal trekking equipments – like trekking poles or sleeping bag liners
  • Personal insurance or cost of emergency evacuation
  • Purchases of personal natures (like mineral water bottles/bottled or canned beverages/chocolates/dry fruits etc)
  • Food to/from the trail head
  • Forest Permits, IMF, wildlife, environmental.

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