Category: Trek Essential Read

5 Things To Keep In Mind Before Choosing Your Next Trekking Location

Posted By : Saheb Singh Chadha/ 61 0

Well, you’ve been working for a while now, and you think you need a break, and want to go for a trek. But which trekking location should you head for? Take the following factors into account, and we’re sure you’ll have your answer by the end!

1. Past Experience

How much have you trekked in the past?

If you’re an absolute beginner, something small or easy like Dodi Tal or Chopta-Chandrashila should be perfect.

The route to Tungnath-Chandrashila. Chaukhamba peeks out in the background.

 

If you’ve done a couple of treks, perhaps Har Ki Dun or Dayara Bugyal catches your fancy!

And if you have quite some experience, perhaps you should answer the call of Stok Kangri, Rupin Pass, or Goecha La.

The final trail before ascending Rupin Pass.

2. Fitness Level

How fit are you? Ideally, you should be fit for any trek. Work out a month in advance in order to make sure you’re prepared.

If you’re in good shape, then most treks can be undertaken by you. Even Kuari Pass can be done by trekkers who don’t have that much experience, yet are fit.

The winter trail to Kuari Pass, with Hathi and Ghodi Parbat in the background.

3. Weather and Season

Most Himalayan treks like Hampta Pass and Kashmir’s Great Lakes are doable in May and June, but there are some treks that are known for the particular seasons they thrive in. If you’re going in April, think of Chopta-Chandrashila. The rhododendrons are in full bloom at Chopta and the route to Tungnath, and you might even encounter some ice and snow near Chandrashila top!

The pink rhododendrons aka Buransh, at Chopta.

Come July and August, and the famous Valley of Flowers beckons you. The flowers are in full bloom, and monsoon treks hold a charm of their own.

The carpet of flowers in the Valley vary from month to month.

September, October, and November, though cold, are the best months for catching a view of the snow capped peaks. The skies are at their clearest, so I’d recommend Nag Tibba or Kuari Pass.

Kathian Campsite on the Nag Tibba trek.

 

Come December and January, and we have the classic winter treks, namely Kedarkantha, and the Chadar trek.

4. Number Of Days At Hand

How many days do you have? If it’s a long weekend trip, then something like Kheerganga and Bhrigu Lake may be more up your alley.

Bhrigu Lake in the Kullu Valley is as mesmerising a trek as any.

 

But if you have a good week to 10 days, go for a trek like Roopkund in Uttarakhand, or the Great Lakes in Kashmir.

Kishensar (Sar means Lake), on the Kashmir Great Lakes Trek.

 

For something in between, try Chandrakhani Pass near Manali!

5. Budget

If you’ve got a humble amount saved up, then Piang Neru or Khar Myundari may be just what you’re looking for!

Jhameer Campsite on the Piang Neru trek.

And if money’s not an issue, try Pin Parvati Pass or Pangarchula Peak trek.

Pro tip: The lesser the days, the cheaper it will be.

 

Well, we just offered you a variety of choices, and how to decide them, so are you any closer to making up your mind?

10 Trekking Tips You Can’t Miss Out On

Posted By : Saheb Singh Chadha/ 102 1

If you’re a beginner to trekking, here are 10 trekking tips that should help you prepare for your first trek! And even if you’re experienced, it’s never too late to brush up on some information.

Trekking Tip 1: Double check everything.

Equipment matters. You don’t want to be out on a hike, and when you need something important, you don’t have it. It can be the difference between life and death. Trekking usually takes place in remote locations, where facilities are scarce, so there’s a good chance you won’t find what you’re looking for.

Even if it is available, why would you want to waste money and buy something you already have?

Tosh Valley.

 

Trekking Tip 2: If hit by AMS, descend.

Mountains can be your best friend, but also your worst enemy. Acute Mountain Sickness hits when you don’t acclimatise properly. Presuming you’re past the point of acclimatising and are already facing symptoms of altitude sickness, the best solution is to descend. While Diamox etc. can help curb the symptoms and effects, removing the cause(high altitude) is the most logical solution.

 

Trekking Tip 3: Prepare adequately.

Make sure you’re physically and mentally fit to go for a trek. Fitness can make the difference between making a trek really easy to complete, or really difficult to manage. You don’t want to be left lagging behind!

Trekking Tip 4: Climb high, sleep low.

Once over 3000 meters above sea level, climb slowly, sleeping no more than 300 m higher at the end of each day. Going higher during the day is fine as long as you go down to sleep. It’s a good idea to reach your destination for the day and then go for an acclimatisation walk somewhere high around, thereafter returning to camp.

Trekking Tip 5: Start early, reach early.

It’s a rule I follow religiously. Early morning usually makes for glorious weather, with astounding views. Plus, if you start by around 5 or 6 AM, there’s a good chance you’ll be at your intended destination by 12 PM or max, 2, just in time for lunch. Plus, the weather usually gets cloudy and rainy post noon, and it’s never fun to trek in that.

Morning views on the Chopta-Chandrashila trail. 

Trekking Tip 6: Leave nothing but footprints. Take nothing but photos. Kill nothing but time. Keep nothing but memories.

Global warming is consuming our planet at a rapid pace, and the Himalayas have one of the most fragile ecosystems in the world. Add to all this, the throngs of tourists visiting them each year, and you have at hand a disaster waiting to happen.

In light of all these, it is our prerogative that we keep our ecological footprint to a minimum. We leave them as we would like to find them. We do not harm the flora and fauna. We take away nothing but experiences.

A moment of reflection at Kedarkantha.

 

Trekking Tip 7: It’s always further than it looks. It’s always taller than it looks. And it’s always harder than it looks.

This one applies to both trekking and mountaineering. If we keep wasting time thinking about how much further the destination is, we make it mentally tiring for ourselves. So it’s best to concentrate on the next step, on the immediate present, and where to put our foot next.

This one’s for the mountaineers! The West Face of Deo Tibba.

 

Trekking Tip 8: Take care of your feet.

Your legs and feet are your most valuable companion on any trek, and that’s why it’s really important to pay attention to them. Make sure to wear the right socks, and the right number of layers. Break in new shoes before taking them for their first trek. Get comfortable in them. Lace them up to the top to reduce chances twisting your ankle.

Trekking Tip 9: When you reach a destination, set up camp first before anything else.

Before doing anything else, it’s necessary that you pitch your tents first. When you do that, you have a base to function out of, out of which you can organise all other activities like cooking. In the event of unforeseen weather, you have a place to take shelter.

Campsite at Piang Neru.

 

Trekking Tip 10: “Aur kitni aage hai?/How much further?” is always a bad question to ask, and one we hate answering 😛

We all know “Bas thoda aur/just 10 minutes more” is a blatant lie we tell just to keep you satisfied, so why make us say it 😛 ?

First Time Trekking Experiences At Hampta

Posted By : Saheb Singh Chadha/ 151 1

We recently interviewed Kratika Jain, a digital marketer from Ahmedabad. In a candid chat, she tells us about her first time trekking experiences to Hampta Pass in July. Read on!

Q: How did you start trekking?

A: Actually, this was my first time trekking, and it all happened rather quickly. Quite a lot of my friends were doing it, and I couldn’t handle their pictures, it was too beautiful, and I really needed a break from my job as well! The satisfaction of the mountains couldn’t be felt in a city like Ahmedabad, and I really wanted to get away. So I quickly opened up Google and started looking for a trek to do.

Q: How did you end up choosing Hampta Pass?

A: I simply searched which trek was popular during July, and Hampta Pass popped up!

Above Jobra Campsite

Q: What was Hampta Pass like, for you?

A: It was easy to moderate, even though it was my first time trekking, but the last two days were quite difficult(during the pass crossing and descending). Even the day we crossed Hampta Pass, we walked for 12 hours. I thought to myself, “Oh shit I’m killing myself !”, but looking back when we finished it, it was a really nice experience, and at that point, I realised that we(the group) had actually done something exciting in life!

Q: How did it feel when you reached the pass itself?

A: Actually, I wasn’t feeling that good, since there was still some portion of the trek remaining. When I reached the pass, I was jubilant, but then thought “Oh shit, abhi aur chalna hai(I still have to walk more!)”.
Then, on the final day, my feelings were the exact opposite and I was thinking “Oh damn, it’s the last day”, and then we felt like it was too short, we wished it was longer. Suddenly all my energy came back that day and we wished we could do it all over again!

Q: Sounds like it was quite a task managing the trek. What inspired you to keep walking?

A: You see so much natural beauty and variations in weather, which you would not get to see in a crowded city like Ahmedabad. The scenery is amazing and beautiful, sometimes it’s flowers, mountains, waterfalls, sometimes it’s rivers. It all inspires you to keep going!

Q: Speaking of rivers, how’d you find the river crossing at Jwara?

A: At first, I felt like not doing it, then I felt a lot of adrenalin during the actual crossing itself, and then I felt like doing it again! It was adventurous, but thankfully I was never scared.

Q: Once you cross Hampta Pass, you come to Spiti and Chandra Tal. How did you like those?

A: It was absolutely beautiful! I had never seen mountainous landscapes, especially since it was my first time trekking. My immediate reaction was “Why don’t they shoot Bollywood movies here? Why do people go abroad to countries like Thailand? Spiti is equally, if not more beautiful”. The truth is, Himachal is really unexplored. That is because of its inaccessibility. But it is this same inaccessibility that allows this region to remain peaceful, calm, and serene. By contrast, we saw Rohtang Pass on the way back, and wahan pe to mela laga hua tha!

Chandra Tal

Q: Being an Indian woman, was there any hurdle you faced while informing your family about going for the trek?

A: I just told my family, don’t wait for me, agar mai waapis nahi aayi! They were asking for a phone number to contact me in case of an emergency, and were shocked to learn ke waahaan pe signal hi nahi aata. They could not comprehend that there are still regions in this country jahaan pe signal nahi aata! All jokes aside, they were mostly fine, they just wanted me to stay in touch, since it was my first time trekking.

Q: Was there any particular event from the trek which stood out for you?

A: The truth is, I wasn’t in a good condition, and desperately wanted a break from my life. I wanted to move out of the city and go to the mountains. So this trek was a big break for me, and genuinely a life changing experience, which I felt I needed. So I would describe the entire trek as an event that stood out for me. To top it all, the Renok staff were really nice and supportive. The group members too were very cooperative. Some of the group members and guides are now friends of mine!

 

Q:Do you have any advice for first time trekkers?

A: What I witnessed on the trek was that people were scared of the altitude, saying “No, mujhse nahi hoga(I will not be able to do it), I can’t do this” etc. If we keep this sort of mindset, we will not be able to concentrate on the trek and enjoy it, enjoy the scenery all around. For those for whom it’s their first time trekking, I have to say this. We should soak in every moment, because every moment is unique, memorable and enjoyable, and we should not forget this in our tiredness!

Q: Finally, has this trek had any lasting effects on you?

A: Apart from being in touch with all the group members, I have realised a lot of things about the mountains.
Trekking is not boring, ever, and it probably won’t be for anyone. Anyone can go for it, people from all walks of life, age, etc., so everyone can disconnect from their individual backgrounds and connect together to the mountains. Trekking also helps you get to know yourself as a person, and nothing can be better than staying with nature.
I felt so much positivity when I returned from Hampta Pass, it’s been life-changing for me. Whenever I’m faced with a negative situation in life, I think of the mountains, and I channel positivity through them into me.
When I returned from Hampta, I kept telling my family and friends the tales of my trek, and now they’ve started to grow bored! Even now, I am in the same mood, dreaming of the mountains. Ab to keeda lag gaya hai(I’m hooked to the mountains now), to trek once or twice during the year.

 

It looks like Kratika had a gala time. Do you think Hampta Pass could be your calling too? Head on over here to find out!

25 Must-Have Songs For Your Travel Playlist

Posted By : Jai Govind Meena/ 57 0

Travelling is an uplifting activity. Be it a road trip with friends, or a solo holiday, listening to the correct music while travelling can make it all the more enjoyable.

So here are 25 songs that you should add to your Travel playlist today!

1. Leaving On A Jetplane – John Denver

“All my bags are packed, I’m ready to go” perfectly defines how all of us feel before setting out on our trips.

2. Khwabon Ke Parindey – Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara

Oho, kya pata, jaayenge kahaan

3. Born To Be Wild – Steppenwolf

Get your motor running, head out on the highway“… what could be more inspiring?

4. Mai Ni Meriye – Mohit Chauhan

Chambe jaana zaroor

5. Kashmire – Led Zeppelin

My Shangri-La beneath the summer moon, I will return again
This song is especially suited for a Kashmir sojourn.
Check out our Kashmir Great Lakes trek here!

6. Sab Bhula Ke – CALL

Sab bhula ke, fir bhi chala mai,
Duniya ki rasme bhula ke
Perfect for them angst-y solitary blues.

7. I Want To Break Free – Queen

God knows, God knows I want to break free

8. Yuhin Chala Chal Rahi – Swades

Kitni hasin hai yeh duniya?

9. Highway To Hell – ACDC

I’m on my way to the promised land, whoo!”

10. Banjarey – Fugly

Rabb hi jaane jo hoga aage.

11. Wanted Dead Or Alive – Bon Jovi

I’m a cowboy, on a steel horse I ride,
I’m wanted, dead or alive

12. Dil Chahta Hai – Title Track

With lyrics like “Dil chahta hai, hum na rahen kabhi yaaro ke bin“, this is the perfect song for a road trip with friends.
If road trips are your thing, check out our Ladakh Jeep Safari!

13. Born To Run – Bruce Springsteen

Tramps like us, baby we were born to run

14. Mast Baharon Ka Mai Aashiq – Mohammad Rafi

Mast baharon ka main aashiq
Main jo chaahe yaar karoon

15. Riders On The Storm – The Doors

Take a long holiday,
Let your children play
It’s a subtle message to all the parents out there 😛
Obviously, this song becomes all the more fun to listen to when it’s actually raining.

16. Hum Jo Chalne Lage – Jab We Met

With lyrics such as “Manzil se behtar lagne lage hai yeh raste“, it’s a reminder that we should enjoy the journey as well, apart from the destination.

17. Boulevard Of Broken Dreams – Green Day

My shadow’s the only one that walks beside me
Another one for them solo trips.

18. Ek Aise Gagan Ke Tale – Kishore Kumar

This song is filled with beautiful lyrics, all of them stand out.

19. I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For – U2

The title explains itself. If you’re searching for something but you don’t know what it is, this is the song to listen to while doing it.

20. Ilahi – Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani

Shaame malang si.

21. Hotel California – The Eagles

You can check out any time you like,
But you can never leave
Once you’re in the mountains, your body may return to the city, but a part of your soul will always be there.

22. Freebird – Lynyrd Skynyrd

Cause I’m as free as a bird now,
And this bird you can not change

23. Mamma I’m Coming Home – Ozzy Osbourne

It hurts so bad, it’s been so long
For when you’re nearing the end of your trip, and home calls.

24. Take Me Home Country Roads – John Denver

Country roads, take me home
To the place I belong

John Denver gets a special second mention, since his songs are just so.. country.

25. Chhaiyyan Chhaiyyan – Dil Se

Yaar misaale os chale,
Paaon ke tale firdaus chale


Well, these were our suggestions.

Let us know in the comments what songs you like having on your Travel playlist!

Top 10 Reasons Why Girls Should Go Solo Trekking in Himalayas

Posted By : Team/ 362

For all the spunky, spirited and carefree girls reading this blog, why girls should go solo trekking and why the Himalayas? Renok brings to you 10 terrific reasons.

Times are changing! And it is all for the best! Venturing into uncharted terrain is no longer just about geography. It is also no longer just a man’s world.  To cite a famous ad for a scooterette, “Why should boys have all the fun?

When the mighty Himalayas beckon the girl in you to take the trekking challenge, how will you respond? Will you choose the “travel agent-guide-safety in numbers” path or the one “less travelled”, the one that urges you to go solo? Trekking solo, especially in the Himalayas, is not for the faint-hearted (or the weak-kneed). For all the spunky, spirited and carefree girls reading this blog, why girls should go solo trekking and why the Himalayas? Here are 10 terrific reasons:

    1. I go to the hills when my heart feels lonely

From the enticing Ladakh plateau to serene Sikkim, from the magical Valley of Flowers Trek in Uttarakhand to the surreal landscapes of Himachal Pradesh, regions from the Northwest to the Northeast are happily couched in the awe-inspiring Himalayas, waiting to be explored.

      1. I am the master of my fate

Going solo Trekking in himalayas is definitely for the free-spirited, uncompromising, at-my-own-pace kind of gal. Group trekking to the Himalayas has its advantages. However, if you are the kind who prefers to chart out her own itinerary, stop a little longer or skip a spot without feeling guilty about it, solo trekking gives you that wonderful power of choice.

    1. I am responsible

Paradoxical as it may seem, solo trekking in the Himalayas will bring forth the responsible, pro-active side of your nature. There is little room for mistakes. You plan better, you are more adequately stocked, your backups and emergency options are thought-out to perfection. Collective trekkers do well in groups – but rarely pay attention to the itinerary or supplies, and are consequently lost if, Heaven forbid, they are indeed “lost”.

      1. I say ‘Hello stranger!’

The Himalayas are not just about inspiring landscapes, lush valleys and thick blankets of snow. They are also about beautiful people – smiling, hospitable, and spontaneous, from Ladakh to Uttarakhand. Solo trekking is also about reaching out to these beautiful people who “happen” along your route. Some may give you valuable insight into life in the mountain ranges. And it would be easier for you young ladies, since locals would be happy to help without feeling threatened.  Be cautious, tough, and trust your instinct when it comes to befriending a stranger.

      1. I have confidence in me

Again, contrary to what one is normally conditioned to believe, young ladies are moving out of their comfort zones into hitherto unexplored domains.  Going solo trekking to the Himalayas is a brave choice, one that requires heaps of confidence. Nothing is familiar. Deep-rooted fears need to be overcome. Courage will be your ultimate ally in the face of lurking dangers. But, as a wise person put it, “Outside of the comfort zone is where the magic happens”.

      1. I think positive

For the young lady who thinks positively, solo trekking only reinforces the positivity. You have chosen a path that is fraught with uncertainty and possible failure at making it to the destination. This could be due to reasons beyond your powers – altitude sickness, landslides, a broken ankle. However, the mountains, nature, fresh air – they could all be lost on you if you are constantly fearful and full of nerves.  If you choose to trek solo in the Himalayas, you have also chosen to transform yourself into a more positive person, expecting things to work out for you instead of dreading failure.

      1. I learn to pace myself

Solo trekking with no guidance teaches you a valuable life skill – learning to pace yourself. You are no longer “controlled” by gadgets, tutors, parents, competitive exams or the system. You pace yourself, with every step. What a superb lesson the Himalayas can teach you, girl! You know when to pause for breath, when to speed up, how to listen to your body and slow down. This is one skill that girls, forever expected to multitask and juggle different roles as they grow into womanhood, cannot do without.

    1. I choose health

The very act of solo-trekking is a test of your physical and mental health generic for benicar. How healthy are you? If you are the kinda girl who takes loving care of body, mind and soul, the solo-trek up the Himalayas would be the perfect test of your physical and mental strength. And if you are fit and with a body to die for, the Himalayas will help you stay that way.

      1. I now have a great profile

Yes, you can put authentic pictures of you surrounded by the majestic Himalayas, with all your trekking gear on, on your facebook page.  Your penchant for doing things creatively and out-of-the-box could be a great way to boost your CV too – just what the new-age employer is looking for!

      1. I reconnect with myself

Solo, in the Himalayas – there could be no better way for you to reconnect with yourself.  There is no one to impress, no one to judge or be judged by, no room for pretense or unnecessary social niceties.  You can be yourself and love yourself exactly the way you are.

As Maya Angelou puts it smartly: ” You alone are enough. You have nothing to prove to anybody”.

 

Go girl, go and live your life in the Himalayas, at least once in your lifetime!

Trekking in Himalayas

10 Must Things to Do When Trekking in Himalayas

Posted By : Jai Govind Meena/ 395

Planning to go for a trek in Himalayas here is the list of 10 must things to do before the trek. No matter whether you are going in an organized trekking in Himalayas or self organized these are the must things to do before the trek.

10 Must Things to Do Before or during Trekking in Himalayas

Planning to go for a trek in Himalayas here is the list of 10 must things to do before the trek. No matter whether you are going in an organized trekking in Himalayas or self organized these are the must things to do before the trek.

1) Thorough Research on your Trek
It’s mandatory that you do your thorough research about the trek. You need to know about the place you will be trekking, weather conditions, the terrain, average trekking distance between camps, Difficulty level, Time etc and plan your trek accordingly.

2) Carry the Right Trekking Equipment
No once can predict the weather on mountains especially when trekking in himalayas. So hope for the best and be prepared for the worst. Hence carry proper gear and trekking equipment’s.

Rainwear, torches, trekking poles, caps, mitten, gloves, sleeping bags or tents being some of the essentials. When trekking in snow do carry proper snow boots & Gaiters.

Trekking in Himalayas
Photo Credit : Kavita Manhas

 

3) Pack Proper Clothing
It’s rightly said that “THERE’S NO SUCH THING AS BAD WEATHER, ONLY BAD CLOTHING”. By wrong clothing, footwear and trekking equipment you are inviting trouble during the trek. These things can lead to injuries so pack as advised. Check our list of Trek Essentials.

4) Carry a first aid kit
A first aid kit must be the first thing you should pack for your trek. Needless to say, you should always carry basic medicines and ointments while trekking. This will avoid you from stopping in the middle of the trek due to some injuries!

A winner is a dreamer who never gives up!

 

5) Pack your backpack correctly
Got all your stuff ready for the trek? Packing your backpack properly can make your trek comfortable, efficient and can even save your life! Read our guide ‘Backpack Infographic’ to know how to pack your trekking backpack in the right manner.

6) Avoid Alcohol & Smoke 
Avoid alcohol and smoke before your trek in himalayas. At 6000 feet above sea level, you exhale and perspire twice as much moisture as you do at sea level and alcohol further dehydrate the body.

 

7) Never plan your trek without a guide when it’s your first time
It’s always better to go with an experienced trek leader. As Himalayan Trekking trails are tricky, it is advisable that you don’t go solo for your first attempt. Choose the right company/ group of people or take a local guide along.

8) Keep yourself Hydrated
Your fluid requirements will increase significantly when trekking in Himalayas because in Himalayas the climate is Cold and Dry. Drink good amount of water before you feel thirsty. During your trek you should have Water stops every 1 hour and try and drink little and always remember “When in mountains never share your water with anyone”. This is the habit to be developed to be self sufficient.

9) Keep it light on stomach 
When you are on trek in Himalayas take extra care because even a good doctor is helpless without his equipment. So avoid eating heavy meals while on the trek. Carry simple and easily digestible foods so that you get instant energy.

10) Know Your Limits
If you don’t have the habit of walking long distances, you can try to cover short distances and take breaks. Fatigue is a common problem that most people usually face while on an excursion. You are the only one who is aware of your physical strength and endurance, so always keep your limitations in consideration.

No matter How hard it was during your trek in the himalayas but once you return you will come to know how enriching experience it was.

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Trek Essentials

Posted By : Jai Govind Meena/ 312 1

Trek Essentials – All you need to carry for your next trek! Do your preparation wisely and look upon what this blue planet has got to offer you..

Trek Essentials

 

 

  • Backpack (Min 55 Ltrs): A good quality backpack from reputed brand and try it before buying we recommend Quechua Forclaz 70
  • Floaters or Sandals: When you are at the camp they help to move freely something like Quechua Arpenaz 50 Sandals, 11 UK (Beige)
  • Trekking Shoes: Always invest in a good quality trekking shoes, we recommend Quechua Forclaz 500
    by Quechua. They are light weight, good grip, sturdy and easily available throughout India. Read How to find best trekking shoes.
  • 2 Pairs of Quick Dry Tees and Track Pants
  • 1 Pair of good Thermals
  • 3 Pair of Socks
  • Full Sleeve Sweater or Quechua Forclaz 50 Fleece
  • One Heavy Jacket like Quechua Warm Navy
  • Gloves
  • Sun Cap
  • One Scarf
  • Light towel
  • Lip Balm
  • Cold Cream & Sun Screen (SPF 40+)
  • Water Bottle 1 Lt
  • Headlamp or Torch with fresh pair of Batteries
  • Personal Toilet Kit and Toilet paper
  • Personal Medicine Kit
  • Dark Sunglasses
  • Gaiters 
  • Trekking Pole (1 is must)  Coleman Trekking Poles
frozen river trek

6 Tips to help you in Chadar Trek – Frozen River Trek

Posted By : Team/ 301

Deep in the valley of Ladakh, tucked away in the ravines, is the wild river Zanskar. Come winter, this lovely river is enveloped by a blanket of ice. And that is what the Chadar Lake refers to – a sheet or a blanket over water.

The Zanskar Frozen River Trek

Deep in the valley of Ladakh, tucked away in the ravines is the wild river Zanskar. Come winter, this lovely river is enveloped by a blanket of ice and trekking over this blanket of ice is what the Chadar Trek refers to. To be specific, Chadar awaits your visit in the months of January and February. Surrounded by the breath taking gorgeousness that Ladakh provides for, walking over the Chadar is nothing less than a surreal experience which will be the stuff, greatest of your memories will be made of.

Considered as one of the toughest treks in the country, the Chadar Trek is often on the bucket list of many trekkers. However, even the most experienced trekkers are sometimes tempted to postpone trekking on Chadar which reaches sub-zero levels in the winters. This trek is all about extreme and insane cold, with temperatures ranging from -1ºC to -20ºC through the day and night. But, fret not.

Here are 6 tips to brace yourself and walk on this breathtaking frozen River Trek ( Chadar Trek) without any glitches.

  1. Prepare Your Mind First

There is no mountain too high and a trek too tough for the mind which has found its resolve and calm. Train your mind to expect and accept the sub-zero level. Do bear in mind that there is life which exists there as well; For centuries Chadar is used as the only way to commute to Leh during winters. Your mental strength will signal your body to withstand the cold clime.

  1. Pack Warm Clothes, Especially Exothermic Pouches

Don’t forget to pack your woolen apparels and accessories – jackets, fleece, thermals,  socks, gloves and mufflers. We especially recommend carrying little heat releasing exothermic pouches or pads as they add an extra layer of warmth. Meant for single usage , these pouches are good to last up to 10 hours and are the real live savers while you are at Chadar Trek – The Frozen River Trek. Slip them in your gloves, boots or jackets and they will keep you warm. You can find them online and exclusive adventure shops in your city. Or, you could even purchase them from the local Leh markets.

  1. Carry Gum Boots and Running Shoes

While you may possess the best quality trekking shoes, nothing can beat the grip and comfort of gum boots while waking across and over the Frozen River Trek (Chadar Trek). And not to mention, gum boots are comparatively cheaper and more reliable too. The only downside to gum boots is that your feet will sweat a lot, leaving your socks damp. You will realize this only once you take them off. Hence, make sure throw in a few extra pair of socks in your trekking bag.

There may be stretches with some knee high water levels which you may need to cross.  Here, your trekking shoes are likely to give you a better grip than the hiking boots. So, you would need to carry both gum boots and trekking shoes.

 

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  1. Take Along Two Sleeping Bags

As it is clear by now, you will be living in very cold temperatures while you are here. Add to that, the wind element which make the nights even colder. You want to be warm and well rested. So make sure that you have a good sleeping bag (with a liner) and an additional sleeping bag, should you need more protection against the cold. As you tuck yourself in, don’t forget to put all your belongings, including metal flask into the sleeping bag as well. Else they will be frozen, if left outside. Though we will provide you the suitable sleeping bags for Chadar Trek but carrying one of your own always helps.

  1. Stop, observe, go

The locals can give you a first hand training of how to cross the lake on your foot. On a closer observation, you would notice that they walk fast and take Penguin like strides on the ice. As you watch them, you will learn their ways of maneuvering around on the ice blanket and learn when is it wiser to wait than to carry on, or the reverse. A few hours of keen observation should teach you a lot!

Zanskar Guide

Our Zanskar Guide – Pic Credit Globalframe.net

 

  1. Keep Your Electronics Warm

Did you know that cold can drain out the charge from your electronics? So make sure you don’t run out of that precious battery when you want to take those breathtaking photographs. Keep them safe by tucking them in your pockets closer to your body it will keep them warm and long lasting. Additionally, carry some extra batteries too.

 

Keep the above mentioned points in mind and you will surely breeze through this trek. As courtesy to Chadar Lake and fellow travelers, make sure that you do not litter and are aware of anything accidentally which may be getting thrown in the terrain. It is, after all our duty to keep this little piece of heaven just that- pristine and clean.

Be safe, be warm. Bon Voyage!

Book Chadar Trek with Renok Adventures 

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Lessons from Trekking

7 Life Lessons you will learn while Trekking in Himalayas

Posted By : Jai Govind Meena/ 422 1

Trek in Himalayas isn’t just a leisure pursuit simply to escape the hustle & bustle of our polluted cities. It is the way we get connected to our motherland.

Trekking in Himalayas isn’t just a leisure pursuit simply to escape the hustle & bustle of our polluted cities. Trekking is a way to get connected with Mother Nature. While this is something many of us may understand, we have a responsibility to pass down the love of nature to future generations. Trekking isn’t just about getting out into the woods, it is about learning how to deal with different situations and adapting to them. Trekking lets us grow as individuals, and the best classroom in the world can be a trekking trail in the Himalayas. In our experience we have seen whoever comes to trek in Himalayas becomes caring, calm and much relaxed person. This is where you should take your children early in their life to teach them some valuable life lessons.

Photo Credit: blmiers2

Lesson#1
During Trekking you will discover that there are better things in world then TV and Video Games

In our fast paced urban life we hardly find any time to go out and play and watching TV and playing video games has become our only past time which is dangerous to our mental as well as physical health. Going on a trekking trip to himalayas gives you fresh air, better smells, better light and no mobile networks makes sure that you are totally connected to yourself.

 Lesson#2
Life is full of crests and troughs and both are equally important

If you ask any trekker they will have great a appreciation for life. Trekking in Himalayas shows the different aspects of life which we normal don’t see in our urban life. Trekking and experiencing nature lets us see the true circle of life.

Lesson#3
We need to Protect the Environment

After your trekking trip to Himalayas you will come to know How fragile our environment is and we need to protect it for our future. Seeing gushing rivers and waterfalls will urge you to save them them.

Lesson#4
Water is Important

Trekking will you the importance of fresh water when you can only drink what you carry in your bottle, one really develop the understanding of importance of water. Selection of camping site highly depends on water source. You need to plan according to the availability of water along the trekking trail. All these things makes you realize the importance of water.

Lesson#5
There are Other ways to Get High !!

Trekkers do drink and do other stuffs to get high but when they are on trekking trip they are already high by the sheer thrills of walking in woods or crossing rivers bare foot and they less likely to demand for any other things to get high.

Lesson#6
You Have To Leave Your Comfort Zone To Get Better Things

Leaving your comfort zone and being uncomfortable for some time is always rewarding. Pushing your body limit to reach at new Lake, Peak or any high altitude pass will give you a feeling which cannot be describe in words.

Lesson#7
Hard Work Usually pay Off

Struggling along a trekking trail for hours at a time can be exhausting and frustrating, but many trekkers get a rush of adrenaline from reaching their destination. Yes, legs might be sore or tired and sweat might be dripping off your face, but completing a goal is a great thing to accomplish.