This expedition is rather challenging due to the extreme cold conditions, but the alpine environment captivates a real sense of adventure; beginning in Leh and ending the trek in Chilling (Karsha extension is possible). The trek enables you to explore the Zanskar area as the route cross over frozen terrains whilst experiencing beautiful erratic colour changes of the Chadar River. The maximum altitude of this trek is 3500 m (11,482 ft.) and you will be accompanied by welcoming porters on your journey. Sightseeing in Leh is also full of exuberance before your departure
Arrival in Delhi
Guests will be received at the airport followed by a transfer to a hotel, where you will be staying overnight.
Domestic flight Delhi – Leh
Altitude: 3500 m / 11,482 ft.
Transferral to a domestic airport where you will fly to Leh. Once reached in Leh, you will then be transferred to your warm-welcoming hotel. In summer Leh town bustles with excitement and tourist activities, until the long winter arrives, when no outdoor work can be done, the local people get busy with agriculture, tourism and festive celebrations.
A Day of Acclimatisation
Leh is located at a high altitude and has a desert climate with hot summers and extreme winters. So it is very important to get acclimatised to avoid altitude sickness. You will spend the day visiting the monastery in town, the Shanti Stupa and Leh’s old fort. Overnight stay in hotel.
Journey from Leh to Chilling
A 3 hour drive will take you west of Leh to Chilling, where our journey begins. Porters will pack all baggage and begin the 2-3 hour walk to our first camp. As we walk upon the ice, we will follow the guide and porters. This being the first day, you will need time to get used to walking on ice. You will learn to keep warm and keep the circulation going. Overnight you will sleep in a cave; a unique experience for many.
Trek 1 – Gyalpo Camp
Trekking Time: 7 hours
Altitude: 3170 m / 10,400 ft.
Your gear will be packed before breakfast, and it is imperative to follow the guide at all times. People often try to climb on the rocks to avoid getting wet, but it’s not always possible. So carry plenty of socks to change.
Trek 2 – Cave
Altitude: 3225 m / 10,580 ft.
The day will consist of ascending uphill on a curving slope of ice, passing a wonderful frozen waterfall. We will have dinner and spend the night in a cave.
Trek 3 – Neraks Camp
Altitude: 3390 m / 11,122 ft.
The day will be spectacular as we enter Zanskar, accompanied by welcoming shouts from the porters. En route you might see some wild life and if you are very, very lucky perhaps a footprint of the elusive snow leopard. Overnight camp outside village.
Trek 4 – Nireq – Dib Gongma
Altitude: 3400 m / 11,154 ft.
With an early departure, we will experience the interesting yet challenging ascent up a steep slope.
Trek 5 – Dib Gongma – Hanumil
Trekking Time: 8 hours
Altitude: 3500 m / 11,482 ft.
The day will be spent trekking over the ice until we exit the gorge. As night approaches, we will stay with villagers and sleep in a room.
Trek 6 – Hanumil – Pishu
Trekking Time: 6 hours
Most of the days trek will be along a dry path (if there’s no snow). Overnight stay in a family home. Note: Walking hours depends on snow conditions.
Trek 7 to 10 – Return to Leh
We follow the same route back as before.
Upon arrival in Leh (Day 15) you will then be transferred to a hotel for an overnight stay.
Optional day in Leh
Just in case there’s bad weather during the trek, this extra day ensures you don't Miss your flight from Leh to New Delhi.
Flight from Leh – Delhi
You will be transferred to the domestic airport for your flight to Delhi. Once reached in Delhi you will then be transported to your hotel where you will be staying overnight. The afternoon can be spent at your own leisure.
Flight Departure: Sightseeing around Delhi
Half a day of sightseeing around Delhi including the Bahai Temple and Qutub Minar. In the evening take an evening stroll in the Connaught Circus, before being transferred to the Indira Gandhi International Airport where you will depart to your onward destination.
Trek 7/8 - Pishu - Karsha
It’s a long walk along a plane (longer if snow is there) to a picturesque monastery perched high on a rock, providing an excellent view of the valley. Join the evening puja in the monastery and stay overnight in the monastery or local house.
Trek 9 to 15 – Return to Leh via Pishu - Chilling
These days will be spent trekking the same route back to Leh. The Chadar River changes its colour and conditions by the minute. The returning journey is quicker due to the descending slope.
Free day in Leh
Just in case there’s bad weather during the trek, this extra day ensures you don't miss your flight from Leh to New Delhi.
Flight from Leh-Delhi
You will be transferred to the domestic airport for your flight to Delhi. Once reached in Delhi you will then be transported to your hotel where you will be staying overnight. You will spend half a day sightseeing in Old and New Delhi, including the Red Fort, Gandhi Memorial and the India Gate. You will also have the opportunity doing some evening shopping, and stroll along Janpath. Overnight stay in hotel.
You will be given the opportunity to visit Old and New Delhi as you will have a full day of sightseeing, including the Bahai Temple and Qutub Minar, before being transferred to the Indira Gandhi International Airport where you will depart to your onward destination.