Duration: 13 Days
A fine trekking peak in Ladakh and an excellent introduction to climbing in the Himalaya
Excellent 13 days itinerary with superb climb, the itinerary gives us opportunity to visit fascinating monasteries in Indus valley and incorporates Spectacular and great monastic Festival at Tak Thok.
Day 1: Arrive Delhi
assistance on arrival and transfer straight to Domestic airport FOR FLIGHT TO LEH.
Day 2: Fly to Leh, the capital of Ladakh.
Early morning fly to Leh, the capital city of Ladakh. The flight takes us over the Greater Himalaya and makes an exciting landing at one of the highest airports in the world. We can hope to get excellent views of Stok Kangri as we fly-in and, on a clear day, the great peaks of the Karakoram are visible to the north. We are met at the airport and taken to the Ladakhi Style hotel. The rest of the day is at leisure. Leh is at an altitude of nearly 11,000ft, and you can expect to feel the effects of the rarefied atmosphere. For the first few hours, you may be a little breathless and perhaps have a slight headache. These symptoms of altitude sickness are mild and usually disappear quite quickly, however, everyone is advised to take it easy for the first day or two. Press-ups and hill sprints are definitely taboo!
Day 3: TAK-THOK
Full Day with pack lunch to witness the spectacular and colourful Takthok Festival. Dinner and overnight in hotel.
Day 4: Leh- Sightseeing to visit Hemis / Thiksey / Shey OR Re-visit Tak-Tok for concluding ceremony.
Leh-Hemis (45 kms.): Full day of sightseeing, visiting the three most important monasteries of Ladakh – Hemis Gompa, Thiksey Gompa and Shey Palace. Hemis is one of the largest and wealthiest monasteries in Ladakh and houses about 150 monks; it also stages the annual Hemis festival. The Gompa, nestled in a gorge and surrounded by dramatic mountain scenery, was built in the 18th century and houses a wide range of beautiful frescoes, thankas, Buddha statues and an excellent library. On the way back to Leh, we visit the superbly situated, 16th century, Thiksey Gompa, which is perched on a hill top. The Gompa houses an important collection of Tibetan-style books, a huge Buddha statue and some excellent works of art. Last stop is the ruined Shey Palace, once the summer palace of the pre-Tibetan kings. The palace monastery houses a large, bronze, blue haired Buddha statue. Back to Leh hotel for dinner and overnight.
Day 5: Leh- Rafting on the Indus.
After breakfast we take a lovely one hour drive to Nemo, starting point of our 3 hours rafting on Indus, we will bob through nice villages and monasteries, after a beach lunch we return back to Leh, evening stroll along the colourful Tibetan Bazaar, or if you feel fit enough we can make a nice ascend/walk to Shanti Stupa peace pogda, from where we have excellent views of the Indus valley. Overnight in hotel.
Day 6: Begin trek up Matho River Valley to Stok Kangri.
Leaving early in the morning, we drive up the Indus Valley to Matho (2 hours), which is the start of our approach to Stok Kangri., we trek up the Matho River Valley and set up camp after several hours’ walk, at a place called Matho Phul (4,480m/14,700ft). After our rest in Leh and with everybody fully acclimatised, everyone should be fit and in good shape for the trek to base camp and climb.
Day 7: Trek to Stok Kangri base camp.
From Matho Phul, we continue up the valley making a steep climb over a pass from which we get more super views of Stok Kangri. Also visible below is base camp and the whole route from base camp to the summit can be pointed out. From here, a steady descent leads to our base camp and home for the next three nights (altitude approx. 5,000m/16,000 ft).
Day 8: – A rest day and time for final preparations.
The expedition leader checks the route, while pax do further acclimatasion and do short walks around the base camp
Day 9: Summit day.
Our summit day begins before dawn, to give us ample time for the climb. It is most likely that we do not need our crampons for the most part as we scramble over scree and boulders, which lead up to the south ridge. The 1,500 ft ridge that stretches up to the summit is exciting and superbly exposed, although never particularly steep and very straightforward. Most of the ridge is like a steep path, so ropes are not usually necessary, although some scrambling is required. At an altitude approaching 20,000 ft it is extremely tiring and anybody who needs a rope will be able to use one. The summit is a superb reward for your effort, giving magnificent views in every direction. The city of Leh is so small that you can barely see it. After taking photographs and perhaps a bite to eat, we set off back down the hill. we return all the way back to base camp,. The evening meal is be accompanied by a wee dram to celebrate the occasion!
Day 10: Trek to Stok from base camp.
From base camp we trek directly down the valley towards the village of Stok. This is a delightful walk, passing several homesteads and numerous ruins of old fortresses. We reach Stok after about seven hours walking, from where transport meets us and take us back to the Hotel in Leh.
Day 11: Fly from Leh to Delhi.
After another spectacular flight, we return to Delhi . Afternoon Guided Tour of Old Delhi, visiting Red Fort, Chandni Chowk ( Silver market). Overnight in hotel.
Day 12: At leisure in Delhi.
Time for last minute shopping and sightseeing. For those with plenty of energy left we can organise a day trip to Agra and the Taj Mahal (this is not included in the price).
Day 13: – Departure:
Early morning departure transfer to the airport for your return flight.