(13 nights 14 days)
This remote trail follows the traditional trade route between the people of Spiti, Changthang and Tibet. It begins in the high altitude meadows of Kibber, the breeding ground of the famous Spiti horses and also called the Snow Leopard country, climbs over the Parang la (5600 mts), the source of the Pare Chu river, the only one of its kind to have its source in India, flow into Tibet and enter the country again in Spiti, reaching Tso Moriri (15,000 ft), a high altitude lake 27 kms long and nearly 8 kms wide. This lake is also the breeding ground for the bar-headed geese, black-necked crane and the Brahmini ducks.
Parang la connects the Spiti valley to parts of Ladakh. On the Spitian side of this pass, flows the river Parilungbi and the track runs on its side, climbing up the pass towards Ladakh. There is a glacier about three kilometers on the northeast of this pass.
- Day 1: Delhi - Manali Drive To Manali by taxi/ Volvo. Rest of the day at leisure/ sightseeing. Night stay in a retreat.
- Day 2: Manali - Kaza Drive for 7-8 hrs over Rohtang La (3975 M) and Kunzum La (4590 M) to reach Kaza. The landscape changes drastically over a matter of a few hours from lush green forest to meadows to barren moonscape as you move towards cold deserts of Spiti. Overnight stay in the Banjara Retreat at Kaza.
Kaza is the capital 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.
- Day 3: Kaza Visit Langza, Komic & Hikkim villages- includes walks for acclimatization Overnight stay in Kaza.
- Day 4: Kaza - Dumla - 22kms/4hrs Drive Kaza - Kibber (18kms) Drive through Ki to Kibber village at 4205 M. This is one of the highest inhabited settlements in India. The famous Ki gompa falls en route and can be visited before beginning the trek. Kibber to Dumla is an easy walk but take your time, as these Spitian gorges are renowned for being hard-going.
- Day 5: Dumla - Thaltak Meadow (4875M) - 7kms/5hrs Descend to the gorge bed and start the climb towards the pass, a steep walk to Thaltak Meadow where you camp for the night. The scenery is wild and the gorge is deep. Even at this height the sunlight reflected from the walls of the gorge causes the temperature to soar.
- Day 6: Thaltak - Jagtha - Bonrojen (5180M) - 14kms/7hrs This is a long and strenuous day walking to Jagtha – 8kms at 15,700 ft. and then 6kms to Bongrojen at 17,000ft.
- Day 7: Bongrojen - Dak Karzong (4940M) - 10 kms/5hrs Leave early for the pass. The final 4 kms is a steep 2-hour climb to Parang La at 18,300 ft.. The pass lies on the trade route between Ladakh and the Spiti valley. There are some great views of the Spiti and the Changthang valleys from the pass. Parilungi, a conical peak, is the first Ladakhi peak visible from Spiti. From the pass, we descend to the source of the Pare Chu river. After the pass, the landscape changes dramatically from steep gorges to broad plains. Camp at Dak Karzong
- Day 8: Dak Karzong - Datang Yongma (4725M) - 12kms/5hrs The route for the next 3 days is in a fairly open valley with a well-marked trail on the left bank of the Pare Chu. Camp overnight at Datang Yongma.
- Day 9: Datang Yongma - Chumik Shilde - 16kms/5-6 hrs Today we follow the trail to Racholemo (14000 ft.) then Norbu Sumdo (14400 ft.) and across to Chumik Shilde. Start early as the winds can be strong in the afternoons.
- Day 10: Chumik Shilde - Tso Moriri (4510M) - 14kms/5hrs Today we walk across the plains to the southern edge of the oval-shaped Tso Moriri at Kiangdom, named after the kiangs (wild Tibetan asses) which roam here freely. The lake breaks into several channels here to create a vast wetland, the breeding ground of several rare species of birds.
- Day 11: Tso Moriri - Karzog (4527M) - 15 kms/6-7hrs The last day of the trek passes along the shore of Tso Moriri. The view of the lake with Lungser Kangri (6666m/ 21,871ft.) in the background is unforgettable. The walk is longer than it looks and with the afternoon winds you will be tired when you reach Karzog. Visit the ancient monastery in Karzog, where the Changpas roam the pastures with their flocks of pashmina goats and still live in yak-skin yurts.
- Day 12: Karzog - Leh - 213 kms/8-9 hrs Drive to Leh via Mahe Bridge. Overnight in a hotel in Leh.
- Day 13: Leh Rest day in Shey or you could visit Leh bazaar & palace, Shey, Hemis and Thiksey monastery. Spend the evening at Shanti Stupa for great views at sundown. Farewell dinner at the famous Summer Harvest restaurant. Overnight at Leh.
- Day 14: Leh - Delhi - fly back Morning transfer after breakfast to Leh airport, well I time to board your return flight to Delhi.