Why This Trek?
During the winter ,Ladakh, is isolated from the whole country due to heavy snowfall. The only way to Ladakh is by air from Delhi. In winter the temperature goes down to 30 below zero and the mighty Zanskar river freezes.
This seven to eight day trek from Chilling to Naerak over the Zanskar is both challenging as well as an unforgettable experience. The landscape acquires a pristine grandeur in winter as the trail enters into the gorge of the Zanskar.
Destinations Covered during Chadar Trek : Leh, Tilad , Gyalpo, Naerak, Tibb
What’s Included :
- 05 Nights tented accommodation on triple sharing basis while on trek.
- 03 Nights Homestay/Guest House accommodation in Leh on triple/quad sharing basis
- All veg meals from Lunch on Day 3rd Day to Lunch on Day 8th
- Basic First Aid Medical kits with oxygen cylinder .
- Qualified and experienced Trek Guide and support staff.
- Tents, Sleeping bags and Sleeping Mattress
- Transport from Leh Guest House to Tilald do and return as per Itinerary
What’s Not Included :
- Wildlife Fee/Environment Fees
- ALTOA Fees
- Medical expenses (apart from first aid) and insurance of any kind.
- Mineral Water & any kind of beverages
- Airport Transfers / Transportation of any Kind
- Any expenses arising out of unforeseen circumstances like flight delay / cancellation / hike in fare, strike or any other natural calamities or any emergency evacuation expenses.
- Meals in Leh
- Anything not mentioned in above inclusions.
- Cost Escalation due to “Force Majeure” and evacuation charges.
Brief Itinerary Chadar Trek:
Day 01: Reporting day at Leh
Day 02: Acclimatization Day
Day 03: Leh to Tsomo Paldar via Chilling & Tilad do
Day 04: Tsomo Paldar to Tibb Cave
Day 05: Tibb Cave to Nerak
Day 06: Nerak to Tibb Cave
Day 07: Tibb Cave to Gyalpo
Day 08: Gyalpo to Tilad do to Leh
Day 09: Depart from Leh
Detailed Chadar Trek Itinerary
Day 1: Reporting day at Leh
The moment you land at Leh Airport, you will be welcomed by shockingly picturesque Leh Airport. It’s advisable to wear warm clothes and woolen gloves at the time of landing, as you’ll feel the abrupt drop in temperature. You can relax at your guesthouse and explore the Leh market in the evening. It would be easier on the trek if you you get used to the cold temperature in Leh because the temperature will only fall as you reach the frozen Zanskar Valley.
Day 2: Acclimatization Day
As per the regulations and keeping in mind the health problems that trekkers might face (AMS), anyone doing the Chadar Trek should be atleast spend two days in Leh for the body to get fully acclimatized to the weather conditions. It is unalterable and it is essential and is to be strictly followed by every trekker. Trekkers can spend the day by visiting the places around the city.
Day 3: Leh to Tsomo Paldar via Chilling & Tilad do
Today you’ll be directed to the first campsite of the trek, Tsomo Paldar via Chilling & Tilad do. It is one of the most picturesque drives which with some of the top spots in Ladakh like Gurudwara Pathar Sahib, Magnetic Hill and the convergence of the Zanskar and Indus where you can take a pit stop to click pictures. After an hour and a half long drive, you will get you to Chilling. Understanding the ice forms and patterns, slowly you will know which surface is brittle and which is solid. A small and light backpack will help you balance your body weight in an effective way. After an hour and a half long trek, you will reach your first campsite at Tsomo Paldar.
Day 4: Tsomo Paldar to Tibb Cave
After spending a cold night in the tent, have a wholesome breakfast and a hot cup of tea that will reactivate your senses in the morning in such subzero conditions. As you start trekking towards Tibb cave which is our next campsite. This trek route has some of the most attention-grabbing frozen waterfalls that one can encounter. Lunch will be served midway to Tibb cave. After walking for a couple of hours you’ll reach your campsite, you will be camping near the Tibb cave which is encircled by dry sand.
Day 5: Tibb Cave to Nerak
As you move towards Nerak, the most anticipated campsite of the trek. Today, the route is almost 13km that takes you to the most iconic landmark of the Chadar trek i.e. the frozen waterfall. Hot lunch will be served on your way to the campsite. Considerably, Nerak will be the coldest campsite on the trek where the temperature goes down to -30 degrees during the night. Trekkers are advised to wear proper layers to stay safe from the freezing cold. If we are able to to reach the waterfall on time, there are chances we might visit Nerak Village as well. Camps will be set at a distance of 15-20 minutes from the waterfall.
Back from Nerak:
There are many stories that trekkers might have heard stories of how unpredictable the weather patterns can get on the Chadar trek. There are times where you might find that the formation of Chadar no longer exists and at some places a new layer of Chadar is formed. Even though the route remains unchanged, it’s amazing to see how different it appears while we return.
Day 6: Nerak to Tibb Cave
Today, we start our return trip walk back to Tibb. The route of the return would not be easy as the river can rapidly react to any change in the temperature. By this time the icy river might have taken a completely new form. On our way back, we can admire the beauty of the valley and click pictures.
Day 7: Tibb Cave to Gyalpo
Beginning from Tibb, we trek upwards to Gyalpo today. The high icy walls and mountains rising from either sides of the river almost make it look like an ice castle.
Day 8: Gyalpo to Tilad do to Leh
This is the last day of trekking on the Chadar and the last chance to engage in the pristine beauty of this frozen river. When you reach Tilad Do, it is time to say good-bye to the Zanskar Valley. You stay in a guest house overnight.
Day 9: Depart from Leh
Next day, you will reach Leh approximately by 6:30 in the evening. We recommend trekkers not to book a flight on 8th Day of the trek but on the 9th Day.
Fitness Required for Chadar Trek At high altitude as the air gets thinner oxygen becomes less abundant. The percentage saturation of hemoglobin with oxygen determines the content of oxygen in our blood. After the human body reaches around 2,100 m (7,000 feet) above sea level, the level of oxygen in our hemoglobin begins to plummet. However, the human body has both short-term and long-term adaptations to altitude that allow it to partially compensate for the lack of oxygen.The Chadar Trek is a moderate trek suitable for first time trekker with basic to above average fitness Trekking Experience: Prior trekking experience is helpful for this trek but not necessary. Fitness Required: The Chadar Trek falls in the category of Moderate treks. The trail is fairly laid out path and has very few steep ascends or descends. Water is available through out the trail. But still if you are thinking of your first big Himalayan trekking experience its better to be prepared. Here is the training schedule to prepare for the trek.
Our treks are generally planned in a way that on an average you have to cover around 9 Kms in 6 hours although there may be slight variation depending on the terrain. This works out to roughly 1.5 kms per hour which is equivalent to walking in the plains at 6 kms per hour.
You can train yourself to run 3 kms in 30 minutes as per the schedule given below. Remember always start your training program with stretching and warm up exercises.
Follow this training schedule for trekking fitness required.
Week 1: Start with 10 minute of brisk walk and then jog for 10 minutes and finally 10 minutes of easy walk.
Week 2: 5 minutes of brisk walk 15 minutes of jog 5 minutes of easy walk
Week 3: 5 minutes of brisk walk 15 minutes of jog 5 minutes of easy walk
Week 4: 5 minutes of brisk walk and jog for 25 min and cool down your body
Things to get for CHADAR TREK
Backpack (Min 60 Ltrs) with Rain Cover
Trekking Shoes. (Quechua Forclaz 500 M Wenge Men Hiking Boots (43))
4 Pairs of Full sleeve shirts/T-Shirt and Track Pants (1 should be waterproof/windproof)
4 Pair of cotton socks. 3 pairs of woolen socks.
2 Full Sleeve Sweater (Quechua Forclaz 50 Fleece, Men’s Large (Black))
One Heavy Down Jacket (Quechua Warm Down Ski Jacket, XXL (Black)
Thermal Inner -2 Pair
2 pair water proof hand gloves
2 Pair woolen Gloves
Cold Cream & Sun Screen (SPF 40+)
Water Bottle 1 Lt (Thermos Preferable)
Headlamp or torch with fresh pair of batteries
Personal Toilet Kit and toilet paper
Personal Medicine Kit
Dark Sunglasses (U/V protected)
Walking Stick (At least one)
People who were spectacles- Should avoid contact lenses and use use photo chromatic glasses instead.
What is Chadar Trek?
During winters when the Zanskar River freezes it forms thick sheet of ice which is referred as Chadar and the trek over the frozen Zanskar River is called The Chadar Trek.
When is the best time to go to Chadar Trek ?
The best time for Chadar Trek is from January and February the winters are peak that freezes the Zanskar River.
What is Chadar trek Difficulty Level ?
Chadar Trek Difficulty level is considered as Challenging trek but the weather conditions make a tough nut to crack as the temperature oscillates between minus 30 degree Celsius to 1 degree Celsius. Though the terrain is fairly gradual as you will be trekking over the frozen Zanskar River which will be a flat walk but in case of broken Chadar you will have to climb or get into the icy cold chilling water.
What are the Chadar Trek Temperature during the Chadar trek?
Chadar Trek temperatures will be +5 to -25 degrees and during night they will in the range of -20 to -30 degree. Need not to worry you will not freeze instantly there are villages along the Chadar Trek route and they live there only. It just take initial couple of days to get acclimatized to these temperatures.
How much we have to trek each day?
Normally our trek are designed in such a way that we reach our camp by lunch time and on an average trekking distance is roughly 10 Kms each day and it takes around 7 hours by an average trekker to cover that distance.
Is Dianox advisable ?
Dianox help in acclimatization but we do not advise it please consult your Doctor before taking it.
Who will lead and who all will go along with us ?
All our treks are led by certified & Experienced Trek Leaders and we try and hire from Local people only so that they have good opportunity. Other than a Trek lead we in our team we will have local Guides, Cook, Helpers and Porters.
How big are the groups ?
Normally our is around 15 trekkers only so that the entire group can get very well and have a memorable trek with us.
What is the minimum number of Trekkers required for Fixed Departures ?
Our Fixed departures are guaranteed even if there is a Single trekker we will proceed.
I am the only girl in trek, is it safe ?
Mountains are much safer then city roads and we say it with conviction. Lot of solo female trekkers join us and only female trekkers share the tent with other female trekkers.
What thing we need to carry ?
You can follow the list at Chadar Trek Essentials ?
What are the charges of Porters who carry my backpack ?
When you are in mountains you should be self-sufficient that you should carry your own backpack you never know what situation you will be in and that is the reason we suggest our trekkers to strictly follow the Chadar Trek essentials list. But still you want to hire a porter the charges would be Rs 800 per day per bag and have to make the payment in advance.
Which type of shoes should I buy ?
Good trekking shoes and Gum boots are must for Chadar Trek. Read more at “How to Buy Trekking Shoes”
How many trekkers will be in one tent ?
Due to the extreme temperatures its better to stay more in one tent. We use three person tent and for couples it will be single tent only.
What level of fitness is expected from the trekkers?
Good physical fitness as well as mental fitness is required for Chadar trek. To get a optimum level of fitness you can go through our article How to prepare for the trek.
What is there in Food menu during a trek ?
We server wholesome and nutritious Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner and Evening Snacks normally it’s all veg to keep off wild animals but we do serve eggs.
How to get safe drinking water on the trek ?
We use natural Himalayan spring water and it is consider safe and clean.
What type of vehicles are used for transportation ?
We use Sumo/Xylo/Innova/Tempo for transportation.
What if medical emergency situation arises ?
We carry First aid kit and normal medicines with us and in case of other medical emergencies we rescue the trekker till road and if there is any additional cost involved that will be borne by trekker only. Before the trek it’s your responsibility to get a medical fitness certificate.
Do you think I should bring some medicines with me ?
Yes you have to bring your personal medicine kit which includes your routine medicines and following medicines as well.
Bandage for sprains
Iodine or water filter (optional)
Moleskin/Second skin – for blisters
Antiseptic ointment for cuts
Anti-bacterial throat lozenges (with antiseptic)
Aspirin/paracetamol – general painkiller
Oral rehydration salts
Broad-spectrum antibiotic (norfloxacin or ciprofloxin)
Anti-diarrhea medication (antibiotic)
Diarrhea stopper (Imodium – optional)
Antibiotic for Giardia or similar microbe or bacteria
How do I book a trek with you?
You can book it online (Book Chadar Trek Online) and once made the payment send us the transaction details with trek name, Trek dates, Name, Mobile no. we will send you the confirmation mail.
Can we change the itinerary ?
We reserve the right to change the itinerary depending upon the weather condition and other factors but as per the situation we can alter the itinerary but if any extra cost arises will be borne by trekkers only. Please note that this is a trekking trip into the remotest region & harshest conditions, where many unforeseen events may force us to change the itinerary. In such cases, we or your trek leader will suggest the best alternative similar to your original itinerary.
Can you customize a Chadar Trek ?
Yes Chadar Trek can be customize, if you would like to travel independently, you are invited to choose any of the trips at your convenient time frame for any number of people. Cost for private trip is fixed on the basis of group size, trek area, duration and trek style.
What if trek is cancelled at the last moment due to natural reason ?
We will offer you an alternate trek of equal no. of days depending upon the weather conditions. All the arrangements for the tour are pre-planned and prepaid. In case of not completion of the tour due to any reason whatsoever there will not be any refund for any un utilized services. Any extra expense due any alteration has to be paid extra.
What is your Cancellation Policy
- Up to 60 Days : 95% of the Trek/Tour cost will be refunded.
- Between 60- 45 Days : 70% of the Trek/Tour cost will be refunded.
- Between 45 – 30 Day : 50% of the Trek/Tour cost will be refunded.
- Between 30-15 Days : 20% of the Trek/Tour cost will be refunded.
- Less than 15 Days : No refund
Getting There(Chadar Trek)
Ladakh in winter in is one of the harshest in India and temperatures can fall upto -30 degree Celsius at night. For the adventure junkies this is the best time to go to Ladakh when the temperatures are near the arctic one and very few tourist and almost the entire is deserted but this is the time to undertake the Chadar Trek and frozen Pangong Lake. During winters the main Manali – Leh Highway and Srinagar – Leh gets closed due to the snowfall on high altitude passes and the only way to reach Ladakh in January is by flying directly to Leh.
Reaching Leh by Flights
Leh Airport is situated in Leh. All flights to Leh in the winter are in the morning.
12th January 2019 (Open)
13th January 2019 (Open)
14th January 2019 (Open)
17th January 2019 (Open)
19th January 2019 (Open)
20th January 2019 (Open)
21st January 2019 (Open)
26th January 2019 (Open)
27th January 2019 (Open)
28th January 2019 (Open)
2nd February 2019 (Open)
3rd February 2019 (Open)
4th February 2019 (Open)
Brief Itinerary Chadar Trek:
Day 1: Arrival at Leh
Day 2: Drive to Chilling roadhead and trek to Tilad Do camp (11,710 ft )
Day 3: Trek to Gyalpo camp (11,400 ft)
Day 4: Trek to Dib Cave (10,580 ft)
Day 5: Trek to Naerak Camp (11,122 ft)
Day 6: Trek to Dib Cave(10,580 ft)
Day 7: Trek to Gyalpo (11,400 ft)
Day 8: Drive back to Leh from Tilad Do
Day 9: Take your Flight to Delhi