K2 Trek Day to Day Itinerary
From our Kilimanjaro climb: Alpine Ascents did themselves proud. There are not enough superlatives to express my gratitude and pleasure on how this trip turned out. Eric Murphy, is Alpine Ascents “Super” guide. Eric, along with his team, did an absolutely amazing job. Being a natural leader and expert manager of resources and people, Eric flawlessly executed his mission. He taught without being too pedantic, encouraged without being patronizing, made us all work and feel as a team, and allowed me to be my ornery self. His patience, honesty and integrity were quite evident in his dealings with staff and clients alike. Many a time I felt I was in a Hollywood movie; I just could not believe my fortune and good luck to be on such a well planned and executed adventure.
Depart Home country
Day 3 Arrive Islamabad Airport
Arrive in Islamabad and transfer to the hotel. Usually early am. Mid morning orientation meeting, followed by changing money and lunch. In the afternoon we may enjoy a part day city tour of Islamabad, which includes famous Faisal Mosque, Shakar Parian, Pakistan monument and city view at Damen Koh.
Islamabad is a modern city located in the Pothohar Plateau in the northeastern part of the country, within the Islamabad Capital Territory. The region has historically been a part of the crossroads of Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa with Margalla pass acting as the gateway between the two regions. The city was built during the 1960s to replace Karachi as Pakistan’s capital. Islamabad is a well-organized international city divided into several different sectors and zones. It is regarded as the most developed city in Pakistan and is ranked as a Gamma- world city. The city is home to Faisal Mosque, the largest mosque in South Asia and the fourth largest mosque in the world.
Day 4 Fly from Islamabad to Skardu
Today we take the short but spectacular flight to Skardu 1 hour. Arrive and transfer to hotel. Free day to explore Skardu. Altitude 2,228m Note: If our flight is cancelled due to bad weather, we will start the drive to Chilas via Babusar Pass 4173m 11-12 hours.
Babusar Pass is a high mountain pass at an elevation of 4.173 m (13,691 ft) above the sea level. The pass is the highest point in the Kaghan Valley, Pakistan. The pass connects the Kaghan valley via the Thak Nala with Chilas on the Karakoram Highway. It’s one of the famous hairpin roads in the world.
Day 5 Free day in Skardu
Today we enjoy a free day in Skardu where we can visit the bazaar and Khurpucho Fort, and Skardu Bazaar. Overnight at hotel Note: If our flight cancelled on day 2, we will spend 9-10 hours (290km) driving from Chilas to Skardu along with Indus River. Skardu/Baltistan valley: The rising of Indus stretches down to Baltistan valley from Tibet to Gilgit and down to the Arabian Sea, which cuts the Indian sub-continent from Asia; Baltistan valley is called a little Tibet in the North of Pakistan. Baltistan is situated at the last end of Himalaya, beside Deosai Plain and Satpara Lake. We will complete gear checks in Skardu before driving up to Askole the following day.
Day 6 Drive from Skardu to Askole Village 8-9 Hours
Today we take the spectacular drive by jeeps to Askoli village, one of the highest villages in the region. Overnight in tents, Altitude 3,000m. Askole village is located about 85 kilometers from Skardu, Pakistan and only accessible by rough 4×4 jeep roads. Askole village is one of the last human settlements before trek up to Baltoro Glacier to Concordia.
All Climbing and trekking expeditions stay here for a night and arrange porters. Askole village is famous as the gateway to K2, Broad Peak, Gasherbrum’s, Muztagh Ata, Trango Towers, Uli Biaho Tower, Paiyu Peak, Baintha Brakk and Latok Peaks, and many more.
Approximate mileage on the trek is 126 miles, over 12 days, including 2 rest days. Elevation gain on the trek is approximately 6,300 feet (not including all the trail undulations) with the high point being 16,750 feet at K2 basecamp.
Day 7 Trek from Askole to Jhola or drive partway to Jhola/Trek 9 hrs /11.3 miles
If the road/bridges are passable, we can drive partway to Jhola and then finish by walking. We begin early as these 1st days of the trek can be extremely hot. The walking is straightforward on jeep road with little elevation gain. Jhola is located along the Braldu river at 10,300’.
Day 8 Trek from Jhola to Paiyu 9 hours / 11.5 miles / Altitude 11,000 ft
Trek to Paiyu. Overnight in tents. A tougher day as the trail to Paiyu undulates for most of the day along the river. We start early due to the heat. We enjoy our first distant views of the Cathedral Towers and of G IV with its unmistakable pyramid shape. At Puiyu we enjoy our last real refuge of trees before joining the massive Baltoro Glacier and moraines for the rest of the journey up valley.
Day 9 Trek to Khoburtse 8 hours / 7.5 miles / Altitude 12,750 ft
Another stunning day on our journey to K2 Base Camp, we see Paiyu Peak (6,610m) Uli Biaho (6,417m), Great Trango Tower (6,286m), Lobsang Spire (5,707m) and the Cathedral Towers. After 1.5 hours walking we join the Baltoro glacier with lots of undulating over rocks and across moraines to reach Khoburtse, a relative oasis along the lateral moraine of the Baltoro Glacier. This is one of the harder days due to all the uneven terrain and footing. Overnight in tents.
Day 10 Trek from Khoburtse to Urdukas 3.5 hours / 3.5 miles / Altitude 13,350 ft
An active rest day with a shorter, easier walk along lateral moraine to Urdukas, our last dry land camp before committing to the middle of the Baltoro glacier for the remainder of the journey. We cross 2 small glaciers in route. At Urdukas we have stunning views of the Trango Tower group and enjoy relaxing afternoon. Overnight in tents.
Day 11 Trek from Urdukas to Goro II 7 hours / 6.5 miles / Altitude 14,000 ft
We traverse out to the middle of the Baltoro glacier with incredible views of the giant peaks of the Karakoram. Masherbrum 7821m, Muztagh Tower (7,284m), G-IV (7,925m), Miter Peak (6,025m) and Biarchedi Peak 6,781m. Overnight in tents
Day 12 Trek from Goro II to Concordia 8 hours / 7.5 miles / Altitude 15,000 ft
Trek to Concordia where the Baltoro, Abruzzi and Godwin Austen glaciers meet. The 360-degree panoramic view here is one of the most spectacular sights in the world. Concordia means the joining of the five glaciers. You will be in the heart of the upper Baltoro Glacier, with views of K2, 8611m, Broad Peak 8047m, G-IV 7,925m and to the East Baltoro Kangri, Kondus, Snow Dome, Golden Throne. The evening sunset is not to be missed.
Day 13 Excursion to Broad Peak and K2 Base Camps 13-15 hours / 15 miles round trip
Trek to Broad Peak Base camp (15,750 ft) which offers one of the best views of K2. Afterwards we continue on to K2 Base Camp (16,700 ft) and then return to Concordia for the night. We begin early as this is a very long day round trip from Concordia with most of the walking on an uneven rocky surface along the Goodwin Austen glacier. Some may choose to the shorter option to Broad Peak.
Day 14 Rest/Weather day as needed at Concordia 15,000 ft
A contingency day at Concordia for weather or rest before we begin our descent back down the Baltoro valley.
Day 15 Trek from Concordia to Goro I 8-9 hrs / 10.5 miles / Altitude 13,500 ft
We trek down the middle of the Baltoro glacier past Masherbrum and Mustagh Ata with views down to the Trango group. Overnight in tents on the rocky glacier.
Day 16 Trek from Goro I to Khoburtse 8 hours / 8 miles / Altitude 12,750 ft
We continue down the glacier and then cross lateral moraines to reach the comfort of Khoburtse and it’s waterfall shower.
Day 17 Trek from Khoburtse to Paiyu 8 hours / 7.3 miles / Altitude 11,000 ft
We cross the last dreaded moraines, glacier and uneven terrain to arrive at the river bed of the Braldu and the relative oasis of Paiyu camp just beyond.
Day 18 Trek to Jhola 6-7 hours/ 11.5 miles / Altitude 10,300 ft
Trek down to Jhola camp on much easier walking along the Braldu river. Overnight in tents.
Day 19 Trek to Korophone Jeep to Skardu 1.5 hrs/ 8 hours Jeep ride
Early trek to Korophone at the pulley bridge 1.5 hours and jeep all the way back to Skardu, 8 hours. Overnight at the Concordia motel in Skardu. Showers and clean up Prep for flights or drive back to Islamabad.
Day 20 Fly from Skardu to Islamabad
We fly back to Islamabad. Afternoon is free for exploring. Overnight hotel
Note: If our flight is cancelled due to bad weather, we will start the drive to Islamabad traveling for 8 hours along with Indus River to reach Chilas.
Day 21 Free day in Islamabad
Enjoy a free day in Islamabad for exploring, sightseeing and shopping. Overnight at hotel Note: If our flight on day 20 was cancelled we will spend 11-12 hours driving from Chilas to Islamabad via Babusar Pass 4173m.
Day 22 Fly Back
Transfer to Islamabad airport for international flight.
Day 22 Fly Back
Arrive country of origin.
The quality of the course was amazing. I’ve previously done Baker and Rainier, with also having done intermediate and advanced ice climbing courses, and this was by far the best instruction. Definitely feel prepared for Denali.