Trekking in Ladakh Itinerary
Day 1: Depart USA
Day 2: Transit via Europe or Asia
Day 3: Arrive Delhi. You will be met outside the arrival hall and transferred to Oberoi Hotel (or similar)
Day 4: Half day sight seeing of Delhi. Depart for a tour of India’s capital. Sightseeing of Old Delhi includes a visit to the Red Fort, built in 1648 during the reign of Shah Jehan in red sandstone, which gave the fort its name. Jama Masjid is India’s largest mosque, built of red sandstone and white marble in the middle of the 17th century. Chandni Chowk (Silver Street), once the imperial avenue down which Shah Jehan rode at the head of lavish cavalcades, is today bustling with shops, stalls and silversmiths’ ateliers. Also visit Raj Ghat where Mahatma Gandhi was cremated. Overnight at Hotel Oberoi or similar. Additional areas such as Humayan’s Tomb may be visited time permitting.
Day 5: Fly Delhi to Leh (capital of Ladakh) : Early morning departure from Delhi on the spectacular flight to Leh. The flight takes us over the Greater Himalaya and makes an exciting landing at one of the highest airports in the world. We hope to get excellent views of Stok Kangri as we fly-in and, on a clear day, the great peaks of the Karakoram are visible to the north. Leh is at an altitude of nearly 11,000ft, and you can expect to feel the effects of the rarefied atmosphere. For the first few hours, you may be a little breathless and perhaps have a slight headache. These symptoms of altitude sickness are mild and usually disappear quite quickly, Rest of the day at leisure to enjoy Leh in an informal tour and acclimatize.
Day 6: Visit Leh, a fascinating labyrinth of winding streets and quaint bazaars. The main street is open and airy, with rows of shops on either side. On either side of the market are seen a long line of Ladakhi women in traditional dress and colorful jewelry of coral and turquoise, seated behind enormous baskets, selling vegetables. The spectacular eight-storey Leh Palace looming above, overlooking the town, was built in the 16th century, about the same time as the Patola in Lhasa. The stroll through the town is followed by a visit to Sankar gompa, about 2 km from the market. It has a number of pure gold icons and richly painted walls, its pictures depicting different stories, including some from the Buddhist books the Panchtantra.
Day 7: Tour of Ladakh Ancient Gompas (monastaries): After driving for short distance, we visit the Shey Palace was built in 1645 by Deldan Namgyal as a summer residence for the kings of Ladakh. It is the oldest palace in Ladakh and above the palace is an even older ruined fortress. Return to the Ladakh Sarai for dinner and overnight stay. [For more on the Gompas of Ladakh]
Day 8: Drive to Tsogotsi. (45 KMS/ 3hours). Upon arrival we meet our porters and trekking team and begin our trek from the left bank of the river Zanskar to the village of Tsogsti. This is small settlement of two houses. From the village it is steep climb through the Tsogsti gorge, which leads you to the summer pasture of Tsogsiphu. After the village, it is a fairly steep climb to our camp or little further up to Pasture Camp at 14,000 ft.
Day 9: Pasture Camp to Kandhalha: We walk up hill towards the Tsogsti Pass while passing herds lots of Yaks, Dzo and domestic cattle. The trail is long and uphill but gradual to the pass which is 17000 ft. From here one could get a beautiful view of Ladakh range Karakoram with the Leh & Zanskar region on the right. We travel downhill to get you to our campsite which will be set on the base of Kandhalha Peak.Day 10: Base of Kandhalha to Rumbak: Again the day will start with uphill climb until you reach Kandhalha which is 16000 ft. Once you get to the pass it is down hill all the way to Rumbak Nala. On the base of the pass you will come across a small tented tea shop, where one could get purchase drinks and you will pass through a Yurutsewhich has a settlement of only one house. Walk along the Yrutse Nala where turn right to reach Rumbak village. Camp will set up and if time permits, visit the village of Rumbak.
Day 11: Rumbak to Base of Chortenchan: We climb to Stok Lha which is 15840 ft. (3 hours). Here one could see the upper part of Indus valley and Stok Gorge with beautiful rock formations below. Climb down to Khilchay which is a summer pasture of Stok Village. Climb over two small humps and get down to Stok Allah, then walk uphill on the left bank of Stok Nallah and for 20 min. get into another summer pasture called Chortenchan. This is one of the few areas in the world known for snow leopards.
Day 12: Chortenchan to Base Camp of Stok Kangri: Climb for about three hours takes you to the base camp of Stok Kangri Mountain . Next two nights (altitude approx. 5,000m/16,000 ft). Overnight in tents at Base Camp.
Day 13: Stok Kangri Base Camp: A rest day and time for final preparations. In order to make our climbing day shorter , we locate site for the advance Basecamp few hours from the base camp. It is situated on the glacier, nestled on the lower slope of the mountain.
Day 14: Advance Base Camp: We climb up the moraine from the base camp, right following a gnarl ascent which leads to the glacier. Depending upon the snow conditions , crampons maybe required to walk (no prior experience needed) on the glacier. At times, the surface of the glaciers is uneven by the melting of the snow. Small crevasses need to be negotiated, though the crossing is not be technical or difficult. We climb up on to the south face, from the top of the glacier, were camp will be established at the altitude of 17,400ft.
Day 15 - 16: Summit and extra day. We start our final ascent before dawn. (Generally we do not use crampons for most section of the climb, as we climb through scree and boulders, that leads the way to the south ridge). The 1,500 ft ridge stretches up to the summit is an exciting climb with some scrambling. At an altitude approaching 20,000 ft it is extremely tiring and anybody who needs a rope will be able to use one. The summit is a superb reward for your effort, giving magnificent views in every direction. After taking photographs, we descend back down the hill . On reaching the glacier, we return all the way back to base camp where our staff awaits.
Day 17: Trek to Stok and drive to Leh. From base camp we trek directly down the valley towards the village of Stok. This is a delightful walk, passing several homesteads and numerous ruins of old fortresses. We reach Stok after about six hours walking, from where transport meets us and take us back to the City Hotel .
Day 18: Visit the famed monasteries of Ladakh such has Hemis and Lamarayu Gompa (temple) Time permitting we can 1-2 gompas.
Day 19: Fly from Leh to Delhi: After another spectacular flight, we return to Hotel Oberoi .
Day 20: At leisure in DELHI: Time for last minute shopping and sightseeing. Spare day incase of flight cancellation due to the weather condition.
Overnight at Hotel Oberoi or similar. Climbers may also fly out late on late night on this day.
Day 21: Depart Delhi early morning return to home country
Travelers note: Each day we will try to have some free time so one is not always on guided tour. While we often eat meals together, they will not be pre-arranged which will allow us the flexibility to eat at local establishments or at more preferred hours. Hotels are subject to change.Return to Top of Page