February 8-21, 2015
(13 nights 14 days)
Known throughout the world for its beautiful fur and shy, elusive behavior, the endangered snow leopard (Panthera uncia) is found in the rugged mountains of Central Asia. Snow leopards are perfectly adapted to the cold, barren landscape of their high-altitude home, but human threats have created an uncertain future for the cats. Despite a range of over 2 million km2, there are only between 4,000 and 6,500 snow leopards left in the wild.
On this trip we search for a snow leopard in the highlands of Spiti valley. Rudyard Kipling describes Spiti in "Kim" in these words: "At last they entered a world within a world - a valley of leagues where the high hills were fashioned of the mere rubble and refuse from off the knees of the mountains... Surely the Gods live here. The valleys of Kullu and Lahaul bound Spiti, locally pronounced “Piti”, on its south and west; the region of Ladakh lies to the north and the Kalpa valley lies to the southeast. Geologically and archaeologically, Spiti is a living museum. The mountains are devoid of any vegetation and erosion by wind, sun and snow over thousands of years has laid bare the rocks. The rugged and rocky mountain slopes sweep down to the riverbeds giving the landscape a moon-like appearance.
From Chandigarh, we go via Shimla and Rampur to Kaza- headquarters of Spiti. From here we head out to Kibber, and then into the back-of-the beyond wilder parts of the Spitian Himalayas where we track Snow Leopards.
- Day 1: Chandigarh- Thanedar- 6 hrs Meet at Chandigarh airport/railway station at 1130 hrs. Drive to Thanedar via Barog, Shimla and Narkanda. Reach Thanedar in the evening. Depending on your travel time, you will be able to see either apple blossoms or apples. Evening around bonfire. Night stay in Banjara Retreat.
Thanedar (7700 ft.) is slightly higher than and the road linking the two runs almost near the crest of the mountain with a gradual ascent. One is constantly treated to a bird's-eye view of the different valleys as the
road twists and turns from one spur to another. Below Thanedar, to the north is the Sutlej Valley and beyond it is the snowy massif. Thanedar is where history of apples in India began. Discover the town which is full of apple Orchard everywhere you see.
- Day 2: Thanedar- Kalpa- 6 hrs Leave for Kalpa after breakfast. Drive along River Sutlej for most of the way. Reach Kalpa in the evening. Check into the hotel for the night. Kalpa is famous for its apple and chilgoza plantations and offers an unparalleled view of the Kinner Kailash. Night stay in hotel.
- Day 3: Kalpa- Tabo- 7 hrs We leave early in the morning after breakfast and head to Tabo. Here the landscape changes from lush green to complete barren. Reach Tabo by late afternoon evening. Stay the night in a local homestay.
- Day 4: Tabo - Kibber- 3 hr Post breakfast drive to Kibber.
- Day 5: Kibber Day for acclimatization. Also meet the Nature conservation foundation to gather information on snow leopard. Night stay in a homestay.
- Day 6: Kibber- Tashigang- 6 hrs hike We leave for Tashigang after breakfast. Camp overnight.
- Day 7: Tashigang- Dinam- Rongolon We spend next 6 days tracking snow leopard in Tashigang, Dinam and Rongolon area of Spiti.
- Day 8: Tashigang- Dinam- Rongolon
- Day 9: Tashigang- Dinam- Rongolon
- Day 10: Tashigang- Dinam- Rongolon
- Day 11: Tashigang- Dinam- Rongolon
- Day 12: Rongolon- Kibber- Tabo- 3 hrs hike and 2.5 hrs drive
- Day 13: Tabo- Thanedar- 10-11 hrs
- Day 14: Drop at Kalka/ Chandigarh- 6 hrs
CostCost per person on twin share: INR 72700 per person
Single room supplement: INR 23750 per person
1. Accommodation on twin share as per details below with daily breakfast, lunch and dinner (pure vegetarian).
2. Transport from Chandigarh- Chandigarh.
3. Trekking arrangements for 5 nights 6 days with kitchen and trek support and staff.
4. All applicable taxes.