Duration: 23 days, 14 days trekking
Accomodations: Camping on trek
Best time: May-November
The Stok Kangri expedition is a suitable objective for fit trekkers, without previous climbing experience, who would like to summit their first Himalayan peak. To help with your acclimatisation for the Stok Kangri climb, we start with a beautiful trek in Ladakh, exploring the high and arid landscape and crossing several high passes. We will see some truly spectacular, rugged country and then continue to base camp for the climb of Stok Kangri (6,153m/20188ft).
Ladakh - the land of high passes – is also known as Little Tibet. It is one of the most remarkable regions of India. Although politically part of India, geographically and culturally Ladakh is actually an extension of western Tibet.
Ladakh has fervently retained the tradition of monastic Buddhism that is being forcefully suppressed within Tibet.
DAY BY DAY ITINERARY
Day 1: ARRIVE DELHI. Upon your arrival at Delhi airport our representative will transfer you to your hotel. Please provide travel plans on booking and we will arrange the pick up and transfer. Overnight hotel.
DAY 2: FLY TO LEH (3,505m/11566ft). Transfer to the airport for an early morning flight to Leh. The rest of the day you can rest and get used to the altitude or start exploring Leh, including Leh palace and old town. Overnight hotel.
DAY 3: SIGHTSEEING AROUND LEH. Leh is the ancient capital of Ladakh and has many hilltop forts and palaces to visit including the Royal Palace which overlooks the town. The town is situated on the old Silk Route and still has a trading tradition- it is well worth wandering around the colourful bazaar. Overnight hotel. View of Leh and surrounding mountains including the Shanti stupa
DAY 4: SIGHTSEEING AROUND LEH. The two most well known monasteries are Shey and Thiksey. Shey gompa was constructed by the first king of Ladakh and was the seat of power for the pre- Tibetan kings. Thiksey gompa is a very impressive monastery containing numerous stupas, statues, thankas, wall paintings and a large pillar engraved with the Buddha's teachings. Overnight hotel.
DAY 5: DRIVE TO LAMARAYU. (3,450m/11385ft) - 6 hours driving. Today we drive along the Indus river to the trek starting point at Lamarayu village. There is a stop en route to visit Alchi village which is home to one of the most beautiful gompas in Ladakh, it is also a World Heritage site. Overnight camping.
DAY 6: TREK TO WANLA. (3,200m/10560ft) (4 hours walking) We start trekking today- after a gentle ascent we go down a valley to the Prinkitla pass at 3,750m which is crossed after another small climb. The village of Shilla is reached after a descent down a narrow gorge. We then cross a river and continue on to Wanla. Overnight camping.
DAY 7: TREK TO HINJU. (3,750m/12375ft) (7 to 8 hours walking) The trail follows the Yapola river to the village of Phanjila, from here we follow a small valley until reaching the camp at Hinju. Overnight camping.
DAY 8: REST DAY AT HINJU. (3,750m/12375ft) A good opportunity to explore the area around Hinju and rest before crossing the Konzke pass tomorrow. Overnight camping.
DAY 9: TREK TO SUMDAH. (3,900m/12870ft) (7 to 8 hours walking) We go up the main valley towards the Konzke pass at 4,900m where, on a clear day, there are superb views of the surrounding peaks. There is a long descent from the pass to the river and our camp at Sumdha. Overnight camping.
DAY 10: TREK TO THE BASE OF DUNDUNCHEN LA. (4,400m/14520ft) (5 hours walking) From Sumdha we continue up the main valley to the base of the Dundunchen la where we camp for the night. Overnight camping.
DAY 11: TREK TO CHILLING. (3,250m/10725ft) (6 hours walking) Today we walk up the Dundunchen La at 4,800m and then descend steeply through a narrow valley to the village of Chilling. Overnight camping.
DAY 12: TREK TO SHINGO. (4,150m/13695ft) (6 hours walking) Today we follow the Zanskar River upstream to the village of Skui where we turn away from the main river and follow a beautiful gorge up to Shingo. Overnight camping.
DAY 13: TREK TO RUMBAK. (3,800m/12540ft) (7 hours walking) From Shingo Village we follow a long gradual ascent to the Ganda La at 4,850m. We pass through Yurutse and then continue to our camp near the village of Rumbak. Overnight camping.
DAY 14: TREK TO KHILCHAY. (4,200m/13860ft) (5 hours walking) From Rumbak we start the the steep climb to the Stok La at 4,900m, where we have views of the Stok Kangri range. The camp is at Khilchay which is a short descent from the pass. Overnight camping.
DAY 15: TREK TO STOK KANGRI BASE CAMP. (4,800m/15840ft) (5 hours walking) Today we walk to Stok Kangri base camp and in the afternoon prepare for tomorrow’s climb to the summit. Overnight camping.
DAY 16: TREK TO ADVANCE BASE CAMP. (5,300m/17490ft) We use an advanced base camp on the climb because it shortens the summit day and increases everyone’s chance of reaching the summit- this tactic has worked well in the past. The route starts by climbing the moraine above base camp and then descends gently to the glacier beyond. The camp is located at 5,300m near the top of the glacier on the south face.
DAY 17: CLIMB STOK KANGRI SUMMIT. (6,153m/ 20188ft) Our summit day begins before dawn, the route climbs over scree and boulders to reach the south ridge which continues to the summit. The ridge is quite exciting with a certain degree of exposure-it is never too steep, although there is some scrambling in places. The biggest challenge is the altitude with everyone becoming out of breath as we approach the summit. The summit views are superb in every direction with Leh visible way down in the valley below. After the summit celebrations and maybe a bite to eat, we retrace our steps back to base camp. Overnight camping.
DAY 18: SPARE SUMMIT DAY. We have included an extra day in the program in case of bad weather or other reasons. Overnight camping.
DAY 19: TREK TO STOK. (4 to 5 hours walking) We descend to the village of Stok where we meet the jeeps for transport back to Leh. Overnight hotel.
DAY 20: RELAX IN LEH. You will have a chance to relax in the relative luxury of Leh, and do any last sightseeing and exploring. There will no doubt be a chance to have a final celebration with your guide and crew before the flight tomorrow. In the summer there are often polo matches on a Sunday. Overnight in the hotel.
DAY 21: FLY TO DELHI. Our representative will meet you and transfer you to your hotel.
DAY 22: RELAX IN DELHI. International flights usually leave after midnight, so sleep in and relax. Leave for the airport about 10 pm.
DAY 23: FLY HOME.
LAND COST: on request
- All accommodation in Delhi and Leh with breakfast.
- Expedition with expert leader
- Camping accommodation as per the program with all meals during the treks.
- Mule drivers and mules during the trekking.
- All monastery entrance fees, wild life fees and camping fees.
- English-speaking guide in monasteries and while trekking.
- Service of cook and attendants during the trekking.
- All camping equipment including North Face or equivalent sleeping tent, foam mattresses, dining tent and toilet tents
- All transportation from Delhi Airport pick-up to departure.
What’s not included:
- Medical and evacuation insurance
- Miscellaneous expenses and tipping to the staff
- Alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks and food in Leh and Delhi.
- International Air ticket to and from Delhi.
- A single supplement.
- Laundry and other services not mentioned in the package. If you need any arrangement, please let us know.
To join the climbing trek, you will need the following equipment. If there is not much snow or ice then we do not need all the equipment but for sure you will need it in the spring: Ice Axe, Crampons, leather mountaineering boots, rope and a four season sleeping bag.
IMPORTANT TREK NOTES:
Whilst every effort is made to keep to the above itinerary, clients will hopefully appreciate that this is Adventure Travel in a remote mountain region. There will quite likely be changes to the itinerary in terms of anything from on-the-spot choice of campsite to when a rest day is taken. Weather conditions, road conditions, vehicle breakdowns off the beaten track, local availability of horses or yaks, can contribute to the need for changes. The Trek guide will do everything in his power to see that you are inconvenienced as little as possible in such circumstances. Timings are approximate.
© Yama Adventures, 2017.