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Manali – Shingo La – Padum (Zanskar)

Months: End June to end September
Number of Days: 11 Days
Grade: Moderate to Strenuous


Day 1: Manali - Darcha
Drive from Manali to Darcha, crossing over the Rohtang Pass, a scenic winding highway over the Pir Panjal range. Descend into the Lahaul valley and continue onto camp at Darcha.

Day 2: Darcha –Palamo (4-5 hours)
From Darcha we follow the track until the last hamlet. Pass a spectacular gorge. Continue along the left bank, then cross a stream. We camp in a grove of poplars.

Day 3: Palamo - Ramjak (6-7 hours) Continue on the left bank until reaching a second (major) ford, and then go up the right hand valley. There are good paths on both sides of the stream, but both are hard going. Good camp at Ramjak in small meadow, spring.

Day 4: Ramjak –over the Shingo La - Camp below the Gumburanjon peak (8-9 Hours)
From the camp the trail climbs moderately to the foot of the pass. We cross several easy streams
till the ground flattens out and the path zigzags through moraine as far as the Shingo-la - 5090m. The descent is steep till we cross and reach the first meadows of Zanskar. Cross several easy streams, then go down an escarpment towards a small plateau. Nice view of the Gumburanjon. There is an extremely good campsite between two streams.

Day 5: Gumburanjon - Tabley (6 Hours).
The trail goes down an accumulation of fallen rocks after which we cross several streams. One hour later we by pass the dominating Gumburanjon peak and an easy descent takes us to the village of Kargyak at 4100m on the right bank. Two hours after Kargyak we reach Tabley and settle into our camp for the night.

Day 6: Tabley - Purne (6 Hours)
Leaving Tabley we continue on the Right Bank along an easy path for about half an hour. Crossing in front of a narrow gorge which is also the point where the treks from Darcha - Padum by the Baralacha-la and Phirtsela meet. Tanze is a small village with its gompa in ruins a bit higher up. A short distance beyond Tanze, there is a bridge across to the left bank. Walk across a rocky terrain till the trail ascends slightly leading to Kuru, a major village of livestock breeders. From here a gentle 3 ½ hour descent leads to the beautiful village of Teta The trail continues downward to the river on the left bank then climbs gently up to Jal after which a steep descent goes towards a large bridge which you cross to get to Purne. Camp at Purne.

Day 7: Purne - Ichar (5-6 Hours)
From Purne we descend to cross a bridge, then go up the left bank. The trail that overhangs the Tsarapchu is sometimes a bit strenuous. We cross a few canyons and pass a bit above a hanging bridge that leads to the village of Cha ( from Cha it is possible to go to Phuktal Gompa – an ancient monastery built within a cave. This will entail an extra day with our base at Purne ). We continue walking passing the small village of Keydang and the teashop at Harsani The trail has a few difficult stretches till we cross a large bridge, leading to Ichar. We set up our camp a bit outside the village.

Day 8: Ichar - Mune (5 Hours)
Cross back over to the left bank, then we take a gradual climb before coming to a tributary where we cross a bridge. Then a gradual descent leads down towards Reru and a beautiful plain (covered with flowers in July) as far as Mune. We camp opposite the monastery.

Day 9: Mune - Padum (5 Hours)
From the monastery we go down a steep incline to the main trail. After two hours, we arrive at Bardan Gompa, a monastery famous for its massive prayer wheel (180 cm high) and its extensive views of the high plains. From Bardan, a dusty road suitable for Jeeps leads to Padum though we walk. Camp outside Padum village.

Day 10 : Padum – Kargil - Take the Jeep that awaits you at Padum to the small town of Kargil and check into a comfortable hotel for the night. In the evening you may have time to explore the interesting bazaar that still seems to exist in the medieval period.

Day 11: Kargil – Leh - We leave early and by passing the ancient Lamayuru monastery we reach Leh by evening. Check into your hotel till the date for your onward flight to New Delhi.

Other Treks around Himachal
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Manali – Bhaba Pass – Kinnaur Valley Trek


The Manali- Miyar Valley Trail into Zanskar


Manali –Shimla Trek via Jalori Pass

4. Manali Chandratal Lake 11
5. Manali – Baralacha La – Phirtsela pass – Padum 12
6. The Pin Parvati Trail 14
7. Manali Bara Banghal Trek 15
8. Manali - Kaza - Parang La – Tso Moriri – Leh Trail 18
9. Manali – Shingo La – Padum – Lamayuru 24


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