Area: Zanskar (Ladakh Himalaya)
Altitude: 3850 mts/12628 ft
Grade: Moderate to tough
Duration: 13 days
Season: Mid Jan to End Feb
The Chadar Trek (Frozen River) is a freezing escape that embarks upon the blanket of a large icecap on the River Zanskar. The strenuous walk connects us from Ladakh to the snow bound villages of the Zanskar Valley, covering a distance of approximately 90-100 kilometers. The trail all throughout leaves you with clattering teeth and frost dried eyes and during the blanched nights it leads to shiver you to empathize the temperature you never experienced before.
The Frozen River Trek starts from an unholy first night at Chilling, a day before you drive to Tilad Do, where the temperature might rove between 1-3 during the day and falling at minus 10 degrees during the night. Hence you got an ARTIC FEELING ahead even being in the Indian Himalaya. The trail from Tilad Do to Gylapo, which is entirely on the frozen river, will knock you the strenuous route ahead. Well, the porters will guide you like sensors, stimulating their sixth sense as to where exactly to step on the icesheet. At places, it might be necessary to wade through ankle deep water, or climb on the cliffs at the side of the river. Eventually you will get used to walking on the Chadar, which appeared like a cross between gliding and skating. The journey thereafter leads to Tibb Cave, which is approximately 14 kilometers en route the deep ravines, mountain caves and frozen waterfalls. The unique part on this trek is the moss covered rock, which is the only greenery and viewed at the plunge of a miraculous waterfall. After camping for the night inside one of the big caves the trail the next morning heads up to Naerak. The journey is simply breathtaking if you can accept the challenges. Up the clear blue sky, down the snow white slippery boulevard, passing through the snow fed walls and gorges, your FRIGID LAG will obviously take away by the colours of nature. Walking few steps up on the frozen floor it heads up to the mother-of-all frozen waterfalls – a huge instance of suspended animation several feet tall and equally wide.
The return trail down from Naerak to Leh follows the same route, covering a total of 7 amazing and tempting days even in the below freezing point.
Take the morning flight for Leh. Check into the guest house and relax the whole day. This is necessary for getting acclimatised. Overnight at the guesthouse.
On this day you will go a sightseeing trip to some ancient monasteries in this area.
Shey Gompa is about 15 kms from Leh. It used to be the summer palace of the kings of Ladakh. There are lots of Stupas and Gompas built around the palace. Shey palace was built by Deldan Namgyal in the beginning of 17Th century AD. Main attraction in Shey is the 12m Shakyamuni Buddha statue inside the Dresthang Gompa.
Thiksey Gompa, close to Shey is about 17 kms from Leh. The monastery is considered to be one of the most beautiful in Ladakh and belongs to the Gelukspa order.
Hemis, about 45 kms south of Leh it is one of the most famous and largest monastery in Ladakh. It belongs to the Drukpa order and was founded in the early 17Th century. The setting is perfect with the monastery cradled in a lovely valley, surrounded by streams and fronted by long Mani walls. Overnight stay at the guest house.
In the morning drive to chilling along with our porters from Pishu village of Zanskar, visit coppersmith workshops. Dinner and overnight stay at guest house.
We begin our Chadar trek by walking on the frozen Zanskar river from Chilling to Zaribago. The trek is of about 5 hours. Overnight at Camp.
Walk on the frozen Zanskar river for about 4 hours from Zaribago to Deepyokma. Overnight at Camp.
Walk for almost 4 to 5 hours from Deepyokma to reach Nyarakpulu below the Nyarak village. Over night at Camp.
Frozen River (Chadar) Trek Leaving Nyarakpulu it's a one hour walk to the small village of Lingshed. Enjoy the comfort and cozy atmosphere of a private house with central heating.
Spend rest of the day in the warmth of a private home in Lingshed. Explore the nearby monasteries, meet the monks and and hospitable people of the village. Overnight stay at the private home.
Lingshed to Nyarakpulu - a walk of about five hours to the campsite.
Nyarakpulu to Tso Mopoaldar a four hour walk to the campsite.
Frozen River (Chadar) Trek Mopoaldar to Tilatdo - another day of walking about 5 hours.
From Tilatdo walk up to Chilling village from where a Jeep will take you back to the hotel in Leh by evening. Overnight stay at hotel.
Early in the morning transfer to airport and from here catch a flight for Delhi.