High Altitude expeditions – Born to survive

The Himalayan mountain ranges have challenged mankind for thousands of years now. The reasons why people visit these mountains are varied but one can feel a higher level of energy, a sense of accomplishment, contentment, humility, improved tolerance and loads of health. We know that adventure activities can heal the mind, improve courage, confidence and even trigger the path to self-realization. Further, Nature is the best classroom mankind will ever get and there are no limits to learning from Mother Nature.

Himalayan Vagabond Adventure offers wide variety of programs from low to high intensities and altitudes from 5000 to 21000 feet for students. Locations include the pristine valleys of the Himachal Pradesh and the majestically dry mountain ranges of Ladakh. The intensity and duration of these programs will suit every age group above 10 years. Programs are available for families, large student groups as well as batches as small as 5 members. Further, customization is possible on individual requirements. HVA also offers ice climbing and rock climbing training for durations of 4 ~ 10 days.

We can organize logistical support for all the officially declared trekking peaks including Hanuman Tibba peak, Stok Kangri Peak, Shettidhar Peak, Ladakhi Peak, Manali  Peak, Deo Tibba Peak, Inderasan Peak.

High Altitude Expeditions

5 days and 4 nights
Day 01: Chakki Bank - Dalhousie.

Arrive Chakki Bank Railway station in the morning and transfer to Dalhousie. Overnight stay in hotel in Dalhousie. Afternoon walking tour of Dalhousie visiting Gandhi Chowk and Subhash Chowk and an old church. Overnight stay at Hotel.

Day 02: Dalhousie – Lakarmandi – Khajiar – Lakarmandi - Kalatop.

After breakfast drive to Khajiar to spend time in the famous khajiar meadows. It is beutiful drive through Kalatop-Khajiar wildlife sanctury. One can enjoy Horse riding and zorbing in Khajiar at extra cost. Lunch at Khajiar. After lunch drive back to Lakarmandi to start beautiful walk into Kalatop wildlife sanctuary. Overnight stay in trekking tents.

Kalatop is at an altitude of 2440 meters. This reserve covers an area of 3069 hectares. Its altitude varies from 1185 meters to 2768 meters (3910 ft-9134 ft.) The terrain is steep and typical of the Outer Himalayas. It is drained by several tributaries of the Ravi River which lies just to the north. The temperature varies from -10°C to 35°C. An area that is home to leopard and Himalayan black bear.

Day 03: Kalatop – Dainkund – Chamba Jot

Approximately 6-7 hours walk. A good day of walking along the upper ridges of the Dhaula Dhar, at about 3000m with a background of the Pir Pinjal and Panji Range ranges. While crossing through Dainkund to our south is an expansive view of the Ranjit Sagar Lake opening out in to the plains. Beyond lays the plains of Punjab, with the rivers Ravi, Chenab and Beas flowing through. On a clear night once can also see the lights of Amritsar and through binoculars one can spot the lights of Lahore as well. The walk is lush green and the path manageable. Continuing through Gujjar territory, we trek further along the ridge before descending to a sheltered summer settlement of rough stone huts in the Nauri valley.

Now heading into the realms of the Gaddi shepherd we start to traverse some of the more difficult nomad trails through the most spectacular landscape. A beautiful grazing meadow set below the stark peaks of the Dhaula Dhar range of mountains. After a comparative smooth trek of 5-6 K.M we will reach Chamba Jot.

It is an hour of uphill walk to Dainkund from where we walk on top of Dhauladhar with superb view of the snow clad peaks of Pir Panjal range. Arrive Chamba Jot and camp for overnight stay in Tents.

Day 04: Chamba Jot- Kainthly 3/4 hours walk

It is downhill walk through very dense cedar forest to Kainthly valley where we camp in the middle of the tall cedar forest. Overnight stay in Tents.

Day 05: Kainthly-Chowari-Pathankot

It is three/four hours walk down to Chowari, the road head from where we drive back to Pathankot for overnight train to Delhi.

Chowari Jot (pass) is located almost in the midst of Chamba and Chowari, this Pass (Jot) provides you with the beauty of Kainthli Dhar full of deoder and kail trees. Touching a height of almost 8000 ft it snows heavily in the winter and has a pleasant season in the winter.

11 Days and 10 Nights
Day 01: Delhi to Manali (2000 m) 570 kms. 16 hours

Evening board in the Volvo Bus and drive to Manali. Overnight in Volvo

Day 02: In Manali

Morning arrival at Manali, check in hotel, Visit old Manali, Hadimba temple, Shiva temple and monastery in town are main attraction, afternoon free in town preparation for the trek, equipment check, shopping etc. Over Night in hotel.

Day 03: Manali to Marsu, Saten (2500 mtrs.) 5 hours. Trek1

After breakfast drive to Prini village, Path leads through the village,Zig-zag trail leads to the valley floor and offers an extensive view. Now easy path leads to the Khangpa village of Saten who were migrated, from Spiti.(From Tibet in ancient time.) (Khangpa community use to move as Nomade in Chang-thang.

Day 04: Marsu, Saten to BaluGyra (3300 mtrs) 5 hours. Trek 2

The trail begins by flat walk through the forest of Mapple, Silver Fir, Pine and Oak, paved by the grass and stone and fields of the wild flowers. Today we will have to cross river couple of times.

Day 05: BaluGyra to Shea Gahru (3700 mtrs.) over Hamta pass (4200 mtrs.) 5 to 6 hours. Trek 3

The trail begins to ascend toward to the mighty Hamta pass, and soon the distant valley of Lahoul/ Spiti comes in to view. From the pass one can enjoy the view of magnificent Himalayan peaks, DeoTibba, IndraAsan, IndraKila. Slowly and gradually landscape starts getting rugged. One hour descend to the meadow of Shea Gahru, beautiful camp site on the foot of the glacier.

Day 06: Shea Gahru to Chhatru (3360 mtrs.) Short day. Trek 4

The trail descends toward the left bank of the “nalla”. Soon the Chandra river is in view. After 3 hours reach at the beautiful campsite.After noon at leisure.

Day 07: Chhatru to ChhotaDara (3440 mtrs.) 5 hours. Trek 5

Easy walk on the dusty and rough road to the opposite of the Chandra river between C.B range and Chhota-Shigri Range.

Day 08: ChhotaDara to Batal (3640 mtrs.) 5 hours. Trek 6

Easy walk, once again on the same dusty road. Right of the trail opposite of the Chandra river the Bara-shigri range offers a magnificent view of the Lalana, Papsura, Dharamsura (White sale ), Shangrila and many other prominent peaks of the range as well as one of the world longest glacier.

Day 9: Batal to Chandra Tal (4200 mtrs.) 5 to 6 hours. Trek 7

One of the most beautiful trail of the trek offers you a wonderful view of the Chandra valley as well as the now carpet mountains of the C.B range and MulKila. Shepherdss from the Kangra valley are with their flocks in the valley. Visit around the valley, meet Theshepherdss, but be careful of the dogs.

Day 10: Drive back to Manali:

After breakfast we board in Rhino/Sumo and drive back to Manali. Evening we go to Vashisht where we take hot spring water bath so that our body get relaxed. Overnight in the Hotel

Day 11: Departure

Half day at leisure in Manali. Evening board in the Volvo and depart for the onward destination…

8 Days and 7 Nights
Day 1: Arrival in Delhi, Train to Haridwar

Haridwar – Himalayan Vagabond Camp (Drive)

Early morning arrive in Delhi. On arrival meet, assist and transfer to New Delhi Railway Station by Himalayan Vagabond Adventures representatives. Board Dehradun Shatabdi at 0650 hrs. Breakfast will be served in train. Arrive at Haridwar Railway Station at 1130 hrs. Board the waiting coach and drive to camp.

Arrive at camp for lunch. Post lunch Camp welcome and orientation briefing followed by allotment of tents. Post lunch, an easy session of rafting on the Ganga.

Evening at leisure playing games like volley ball/cricket etc. Dinner and overnight at HVA Camp.

Day 2: Hiking & Drive to Syalsaur

Post breakfast, we go for a short hike in the surrounding areas. An early lunch at the camp.

Post lunch, we drive for about 5 hours to Syalsaur. Today we drive past the holy towns of Devprayag (813 m) and Rudraprayag (610 m).

At Devprayag, the rivers Alaknanda and Bhagirathi meet to form the River Ganges.

Rudraprayag is a town dotted with temples and it was here that renowned naturalist Jim Corbett shot the man-eating leopard that had claimed 126 human lives in 1928.

Reach Syalsaur in the evening. Campfire and dinner. Overnight in Guest House

Day 3: Syalsaur – Duggalbitta, acclimatization hike

Early morning wake up followed by breakfast. Post breakfast, we drive for about 3 hours to Dogalbitta (2340 M).

Dogalbitta is set amidst the sylvan grandeur of the Himalayan pastureland. You get panoramic views of high Garhwal Himalayan peaks from here. We set up camp on arrival at Dogalbitta followed by a hot lunch.

Post lunch, we do a short trek in the surrounding areas. This would help the students and teachers to acclimatize to the higher altitude. Evening at leisure. Dinner and overnight in dome tents at Duggalbitta.

Day 4: Duggalbitta – Mastura – Deoria Tal

Post early breakfast we trek down the trail from Duggalbitta, for about 2 hrs, to the road head to board the coaches and drive to Mastura. We ascend all the way up, via Sari village, for about 2 hours to reach the lake. Lunch at the lake and the students’ pitch up their tents and settle in.

Deoriatal is a beautiful high altitude Himalayan lake in the midst of a dense oak and rhododendron forest. We can see the reflection of Chaukhamba (7138 m) and other high snow covered Himalayan peaks in the lake.

Evening at leisure. Dinner around a campfire. Overnight in dome tents at Deoria Tal

Day 5: Deoria Tal (2134 m) – Meadow near Chopta

Early morning wake up followed by breakfast. After breakfast, we start the trek with a packed lunch. The trek today would take about 7 hours. Initially the trek ascends up to the top of the ridge and then follows along the ridge. The trek all along is through thick forest of Deodars and Rhododendrons. We conclude the trek at a meadow. Arrive by tea time and set up camp for the night.

Evening at leisure followed by dinner. Overnight in dome tents at the meadow.

Day 6: Meadow - Chopta – Tungnath - Chandrashilla

Early morning enjoy the avi fauna of the area. As the area has real thick forests chances of encountering Himalayan Birds and wild life are great here. After breakfast we trek to Chopta (2900 m), approximate time of 2/3 hours, and continue to Tungnath (3680 m). The entire trek today is a gradual ascent through the forest of dwarf rhododendron. One can see the rare "Monal" the most colorful pheasant in the area.

Tungnath is a mountain located in Chamoli, a district of Garhwal, in Uttarakhand, India. The mountain is located between the Mandakini and Alaknanda rivers. The temple, situated on Tungnath at an altitude of 3,680 meters, is the highest Shiva temple. The temple is believed to be 1000 years old and is the 3rd of the Panch Kedars. It is believed that the temple was built by the Pandavas to appease Lord Shiva, who was enraged by the massacre on the battlefield of Kurukshetra during the Mahabharat war. The temple is three kilometers from Chopta and lies about 2 km below Chandrashila Peak (4000 m).

We have a picnic lunch at the temple. Post lunch, we trek up to Chandrashilla peak (3679 m). The students will have to trek through snow to reach the peak.

Chandrashila is the most accessible mini peak situated in the Rudraprayag District of Uttarakhand. This peak is perched at an altitude of 3679 m in Uttaranchal Himalayas. This peak presents a rare panoramic view of innumerable snow clad peaks. Trekking to this mini peak is arranged by Garhwal Mandal Vikas Nigam. This trekking comprises scaling, skiing and trekking through a route of rich flora and fauna, lakes and meadows full of fresh snow in the winter month.

Nanda Devi, Trishul, Kedar and Chaukhamba peaks can be seen from the top of Chandrashila Peak.

After a brief stop we descend down to Tungnath. The students then trek back to the camp-site.

Dinner and overnight in dome tents at Duggalbitta.

Day 7: Duggalbitta – Camp (Approx. 9 hours drive)

After an early wake up, we wind up camp. Post breakfast, we depart for Himalayan Vagabond Adventures camp. Picnic lunch enroute. Arrive at the camp for tea. Evening at leisure at the camp. Dinner around a merry campfire. Overnight in camp.

Day 8: Presentation Ceremony and depart
5 Nights and 6 Days
Day 1: Drive to Jagatsukh (2015m) 7 km away from Manali

Jagatsukh to Tilgan (2430m) 5 to 6 hour trek. Uphill, trail leads through forest and passes small old villages. Great view of green Kullu Valley.

Day 2: Tilgan to Sarotu (3380m) 6 to 7 hours trek

First we have a steep climb through forest, then a gradual walk above the tree line. Nice view, great spot for photographer.

Day 3: Sarotu to Chikka (3300m) 6 hours trek

Downhill, crossing of chilly river.

Day 4: Chikka to Balu-Ka-Gera (3770m) 5 hours trek

Gradual climb along the river through meadows with colorful flowers. At campsite great view of snow covered mountains.

Day 5: Balu Ghera to Shia Gauru (Over Hamta Pass) (4268m) 6 hours trek

Steep ascent up to Hamta pass. Later descend on the other side in steep slopes down to the camp site. Mont Deo Tibba and Indrasan are visible along the way. We have a wide view of the Lahaul Valley.

Day 6: Shia Gauru to Chattru (3560m) 4 hours trek downhill

Drive back by bus or Jeep to Manali over Rothang Pass (3980 m). Nice and easy descend down to Chattru. Drive back to Manali.

16 Days
Day 01: Arrival Delhi:

Met on arrival by Himalayan Vagabond Adventures representative and transfer to the hotel.

New Delhi is a bustling metropolis, which successfully combines the ancient with the modern. Along with the fast spiraling skyscrapers, the city is dotted with many historical monuments that stand as silent reminders to the region’s ancient legacy. The first impressions for any visitor traveling in from the airport are of a spacious, garden city with roads lined by trees.

Day 02: Delhi:

Morning at leisure to recover from jetlag. Afternoon half day guided city tour of New Delhi.

The division between New and Old Delhi is the division between the capitals of the British and the Mughals. It also marks the division in life styles. Old Delhi or The Walled City is all tradition where one gets a glimpse of a past life-style in all its facets and colours. New Delhi in contrast is a city trying to live upto the best of 21st century standards.

The tour to Imperial Delhi will include a visit to the Qutab Minar, the tallest stone tower in India. Visit Humayun’s tomb, built by the widow of the second Mughal Emperor, Humayun. The tomb, an outstanding monument in the Indo-Persian style, is said have inspired Emperor Shah Jahan to make the world famous Taj Mahal.

Overnight in Delhi.

Day 03: Delhi - Leh (By Flight):

Early morning transfer to airport to board the flight to Leh. Met on arrival by Himalayan Vagabond Adventures representative at Leh airport and transfer to the hotel.

Rest day at leisure for acclimatization. In the evening, a visit to the Leh Bazaar. Leh is the headquarters of the Ladakh region and an interesting town – colourful, with unusual people and food.

Note: Spending the first afternoon at leisure in the hotel is a must for acclimatization.

Day 04: Leh:

Morning at leisure for better acclimatization. Lunch at the hotel. Post lunch visit to Stok Palace, Matho & Stakna monasteries.

Stok Gompa and Palace is situated 14 km from Leh and is the present residence of the royal family of Ladakh. The palace was built by king- Tsespal Tondup Namgyal in year 1825 after Zorawar Singh'sannexation of Ladakh. The palace has a collection of royal dresses, old Thankas, King's crown etc. that is open for visitors.

Matho Monastery is 25 kms south east of Leh is the only Gompa, which belongs to the Saskya order. Lama Tungpa Dorjay founded it in the 16th century and named the Gompa as Thupstan -Sharling Choskor. In order to introduce the Monastic community, the king offered religious estate in neighboring villages and the Nag-Rang festival was started.

Stakana Monastery was built by great scholar saint chosje Jamyang Palkar in 1580 A.D. during the reign of King Jamyang Namgyal. The monastery is 45 Km south of Leh and is founded on a hill shaped Stakna (Tiger nose).

Day 05: Leh:

Morning after breakfast visit Shey, Thiksey & Hemis Monasteries.

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. In 1655, the same king built the two-storey Shey Gompa adjacent to the palace. The Gompa has a 12m high seated Buddha statue made out of gilded copper sheets and is the only biggest statue in the region made from metal.

Thiksey Gompa is the most picturesquely situated monastery in Ladakh, perched high on a hill above the Indus. Its buildings are arranged at various levels, leading up to the private apartments of the incarnate lamas on the summit. From here one commands a magnificent view of the valley. The gompa possesses a rich and beautiful collection of hundreds of hand-written or painted prayer books.

Hemis Gompa is one of the most important in Ladakh, the largest and also the wealthiest. It was built in 1620 by the architect king- Singe Namgyal, a great patron of Buddhism. He filled Hemis with golden statues, stupas set with precious stones and thangkhas brought from many places, including Tibet. The lamas of Hemis were associated with the Ladakhi royal family. Although only about a dozen lamas actually live here, Hemis has several hundred lamas attached to its subsidiary monasteries

Retune to hotel for lunch. Post lunch walk through the Leh Bazaar up to Shanti Stupa to have a panoramic view of entire Leh town.

Day 06: Leh - Likir – Yangthang (Drive 65 km/ 2 hrs + Trek 5 hrs):

After breakfast, we drive for two hours to Likir and met up with our trekking staff and the ponies that will carry personal luggage and camping equipment.

At Likir the monastery situated on a hill towards the village belongs to the Gelukspa order. It was founded in 1065 A.D by Lama Durwang Chosje during the reign of king Lhachen Gyalpo, which was named 'Klu-Khil-GA-Ladan-Dar-Rgyas-Ling'.

After visiting the monastery, we start the trek through a barley field to cross a small stream and then to village Sumdo. From Sumdo the trek is gradual to village Yangthang (3700 m) which would be our first night halt on this trail. Overnight in tents.

Day 07: Yangthang - Tsermangchan La - Hemis Shukpachan (Trek 12 km/ 5 hrs):

After breakfast, we start the trek to Wulle valley. As we enter the valley there is an ascent of one hour to Tsermangchan La (4000 m) and then a descent towards Hemis Shukpachan (3596 m), the highest village on this route. It’s a big village and is famous for Cedar trees which are found abundance, hence the name of village. In the evening visit the beautiful monastery just outside the village and a family house for some butter tea and Ladakhi chang (the local beer). Overnight in tents.

Day 08: Hemis Shukpachan – Timosgam – Leh (Trek 5-6 hrs + Drive):

After breakfast start the trek through the Apricot rich village of Ang and reach Timosgam, the historical village, where one can visit the monastery and the Palace. This valley has warm weather as compared to Indus valley and hence conducive to thick vegetation. The valley has plenty of apricots, apples and nuts plantations thus making it one of the richest valleys in Ladakh. Since people are rich here, they have beautiful houses with wonderful interiors.

At Timosgam, we board our waiting vehicle and drive back to Leh. Overnight at the hotel.

Day 09: Leh – Stok trekking point – Mankarmo (4200m, Drive 1 hr & trek 4 hrs):

Morning after breakfast drive to Stok village, which is the road head for trekking to Stok Kangri base camp. Start trekking to reach the campsite at the small shepherds’ village of Mankarmo located on the pastures near the steam flowing from Stok Kangri. Overnight in tents.

Day 10: Mankarmo - Base Camp (4900 m, trek 1 ½ hrs):

Morning after breakfast, start the trek on to the left side of the valley to reach the base of Stok Kangri and establish the camp. The camp is in a basin with a lovely view of the massif of Gulep Kangri. Stok Kangri is hidden behind a ridge. Overnight in tents.

Day 11: Stok Kangri Base Camp:

Full day at leisure for acclimatization.

Optional: Trek towards Stok Kangri/ Gulep Kangri for height gain. In the evening return back to the base camp.

In the mountaineering parlance, a trekking peak is the name given to a summit that does not require any technical knowledge for climbing or any equipment for the ascent. But 6,250 m does require fitness and stamina.

Day 12: Summit Stok Kangri Peak (6153 M):

Today a long, arduous walk awaits us. We start our day at 02:00 hrs climbing up and switch backing to the top of the ridge in front of our camp. The ascent to the ridge is tough and takes an hour. Thereafter we follow a narrow trail to reach the moraine coming down from the glacier. We climb up over the moraines for an hour and then cross the glacier to reach a basin in another hour. From here, we now go up the east face over more loose rocks for four and a half hours to reach the East- ridge. At the ridge we stop a while to breathe our self at ease before taking a grueling ninety minutes climb to the summit. At the summit we will get a magical 360 degree view of the whole of Ladakh – the twin peaks of Nun (7,086 M) and Kun (7,132 M) to the east, the Karakorams to the north, the plains of Changthang and the Tibetan plateau to the west and the Zanskar range to the south.

After spending some time at the summit, we descend back to the Base Camp. Overnight in tents.

Day 13: Stok Kangri Base Camp:

Extra day at the base for the summit if incase the weather does not permit us to make the summit or if some people are note well acclimatized. Overnight in tents.

Day 14: Stok Kangri Base Camp – Stok village – Leh (Trek 05 hrs & drive 01 hrs):

Morning after breakfast wind-up Base Camp and trek down to reach Stok. On arrival board the waiting vehicle and drive back to Leh for lunch at the hotel. Overnight at the hotel.

Day 15: Leh:

Day at leisure for independent activity. Optional: Rafting on Indus River (Pheyang to Nimu) or drive to Khardung La - the world highest motorable road at 5600 M.

Day 16: Leh – Delhi (By Flight):

Delhi – Onward destination: Transfer to the airport to board the flight back to Delhi. Transfer to the hotel. Rest day, at leisure. Late evening transfer to the international airport to board the flight for onward destination.

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