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Kashmir Great Lakes Trek

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Available dates:
05-07-2024
19-07-2024
13-09-2024

CUSTOMIZED:
Fees based on the final number of participants. Kindly contact +91-9051055011/ +91-8969336262 for the further detail before proceeding for the payment.

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7 Days
Availability : 05-07-2024, 19-07-2024, 13-09-2024
Sonamarg, Kashmir
Naranaag, Kashmir
Min Age : 12

Glimpse of Kashmir Great Lakes Trek:

Location: Kashmir, India

Duration: 7 Days/ 6 Nights

Trek gradient: Moderate-difficult

Maximum Altitude: 13,750 feet above sea level

Distance: 75 km

Pickup/ Drop Point: Sonamarg/ Naranaag

Base camp: Sonamarg, Kashmir

Best Season: Beginning of July to mid September

TemperatureJuly- mid August: 20°C to 5°C

August end- Mid September: min -3°C

Customized fees:
Fees based on the final number of participants. Kindly contact +91-9051055011/ +91-8969336262 for the further detail before proceeding for the payment.

Overview of Kashmir Great Lakes Trek:

Have you ever wondered what Heaven looks like? How majestic and pristine the scenery must be, with its lush flora and fauna? In Jahangir’s words, Kashmir is the Heaven on Earth! With its everlasting beauty among majestic valleys, placid lakes and diverse natural resources, Kashmir stands as a testimony to Jahangir’s words. And what would you be if you don’t bask in the beauty of Kashmir at least once in your lifetime?

Don’t worry, you can bear witness to the beauty of Kashmir Great Lakes (KGL) too, for KGL treks are frequent over the July – September period when the Great lakes are bathed in sunlight as if wearing the crown they deserve. Kashmir’s Great Lakes, Vishansar Lake, Gangabal Lake and the grand Dal Lake are all alpine lakes and have been picturesque examples of some of the most beautiful tourist spots in the entire world. The Kashmir valley is located in the Northernmost state of Jammu and Kashmir in India. The entire KGL trek programme takes about 10 days, divided into 6 days of trekking, an additional buffer day, and separate entry and exits point. Starting from Shitkari near Soanmarg (80 kms from Srinagar), ending at Naranaag (about 50 kms from Srinagar. Over the seven days of trekking, you will be taken along the seven great lakes, being called 7 lakes in 7 miles. There used to be about 50 lakes in the past, most of which have dried out, leaving behind the seven great lakes.

So what are you waiting for? Let’s dive deeper into the details of the KGL trek that will leave you mesmerised by the beautiful vistas of Kashmir.

Why Kashmir Great Lakes Trek…?:
  • The KGL trek remains faithful to its trekking aspects. Most of the Kashmir terrain is inaccessible by conventional modes of transport. So the extensive trekking experience is most sought after by most travellers.

 

  • The KGL trek is not as congested as other Himalayan treks.

 

  • The trekkers will find themselves in the most authentic natural experience as the terrain is not privy to modern human civilization.

 

  • The unending beauty of the Kashmir Valley spreads beyond to the crystal clear lakes. You can spot fishes, pebbles lying on the bed of the lake. Nights in the Kashmir Valley are sights to cherish. You can easily spot the milky way in the clear Kashmir nights due to lack of pollution. On clear days you can even spot the mythical Nanga Parbat n all its glory.

 

  • If you’re as fascinated by wildlife as us, Kashmir valleys are home to Meerkat families.

 

  • Camping is one of the most unforgettable experiences you can ever have in your life. Lucky for you, the KGL trek will provide you with the experience as camping is the only mode of accommodation in a place so far off from human habitation.

Departure Location

Return Location

Sonamarg, Kashmir

Naranaag, Kashmir

Price Includes

  • Accommodation •Camping accommodation: twin sharing in tent (Sonamarg to Narnaag) •Camping essentials: Tents, Sleeping bags, Mattress, Kitchen tent, Toilet tent (traditional pit style)
  • Food•Meals including Breakfast, Lunch, Evening tea, Dinner (From Dinner of Day 1 to Breakfast of Day 7) •Note: Packed lunch will be provided during the trek
  • Support staff•Guide, Group Porter, Cook, Helper
  • Rescue•1 Stand by mule •Stretcher evacuation
  • Medical•Portable Oxygen cylinder, Pulse oximeter, BP apparatus, Infrared thermometer & Other staffs
  • Permits

Price Excludes

  • Transportation•Drive from Srinagar to Sonamarg & back from Narnaag to Srinagar.
  • Insurance
  • Mule for personal / rescue purpose will be additionally charged
  • In an event of a trekker deciding on discontinuing the trek mid-way due to any circumstance/ evacuation, he/she will be escorted till the nearest road end from where the further expenses of transportation, hotel/ hospital and food shall be managed and borne by that trekker. In such unfortunate event the trekker won’t be eligible for the refund.
  • Personal trekking gears like trekking poles, toiletry and other items mentioned later in things to carry section.
  • Any cost escalation (accommodation, food, transportation) due to unforeseen circumstances like landslides, roadblocks, bad weather, pandemic crisis, sudden government policies or regulations
  • Any expense arising out of itinerary will have to be borne by the trekker.
  • Gratuity/ Tip

Advisory

  • Always carry a valid original photo ID card with you on this trek as you encounter a lot of army camps on the way.
  • Prepaid sim cards do not work in Kashmir.
  • Trekking is an activity where there are more than 50% chances of facing uncertainty, as you see it’s mentioned “Tentative” itinerary. Weather conditions, wildlife movements, permission changes can often force the trek leader to change the itinerary, distance or place.
  • Throughout the trek, starting from the pick up to the drop, the final decision will be taken by the trek leader and all the trekkers will be expected to abide to the same.
  • All participants are expected to have minimum fitness, stamina and the ability to sustain harsh environments.
  • Every trekker will have to undergo a temperature and other vitals check every day.
  • Do weigh your Gears post packing. It should not exceed the range of 8-10 kg – preferably on the lighter side.
Forms
Booking terms
Confirmation policy
  • Email on booking@meandmountain.com or WhatsApp on +91-9051055011 the following details: Name of the participant(s), Name of the event, Date of the event, Email address (Note: This is not the Enrolment form) and proceed with the online payment either via the payment link shared via WhatsApp or the payment section on the website.
  • Mode of payment: only online
  • The participants will receive the Confirmation email and Ticket via email within 48 hours.
  • Ater the confirmation, you will need to send the dully filled, signed and scanned forms (Enrolment, Medical & Self-declaration) to booking@meandmountain.com, before commencement of the expedition.
  • The forms can be downloaded from the links below or ‘FORMS’ section in the home page.
  • It is mandatory for all the participants to submit all 3 forms before the expedition, in absence of which Me and Mountain shall have a full right to deny the entry of that participant to the particular expedition.
Cancellation policy
  • Cancellation done any time after the booking of the event shall be adjusted in any event later with ‘Me And Mountain Global Adventures Pvt Ltd’ only via Adjustment voucher. The Adjustment voucher will be valid for 1 year from the date of the event cancelled.
  • Refer the section on Cancellation/Refund Policy for the detail cancellation policy.
Discontinuation policy
  • In an event of a participant deciding on discontinuing the event mid-way due to any circumstance other than medical condition requiring emergency evacuation, he/she will require to do so by signing the ‘Discontinuation form’ after which he/she is set to go on own. In such situation the participant will neither be eligible for the Refund or the Adjustment voucher.
Fitness training :
  • Cardiovascular training
  • Jogging/ running
  • Free hand stretching
  • Walk daily at least 2-3km
Diet recommendation :
  • Consume less spicy diet at least 7 days prior to the trek.
Things to carry:
Clothing:
  • 3 dry-fit T-shirts
  • 2-3 pairs of trek pants
  • 1 good insulated jacket- down or synthetic padded to withstand sub-zero temperature
  • 1 wind + waterproof jacket
  • 1 fleece jacket
  • 1 set of body warmer (polyester….avoid cotton fabric)
  • Rain jacket/ poncho
  • 4-5 pairs of socks
  • Insulated gloves
  • Woollen cap/ balaclava
Footwear:
  • Medium range trekking shoes
  • Slippers/floaters
Gears:
  • Backpack- 50-60 litre with rain cover
  • Daypack- 20-30 litre with rain cover
  • Sunglasses with UV protection
  • Cap/ hat
  • Quick dry towel
  • Trekking poles (preferably a pair)
  • Headlamp with extra batteries
  • Water bottle (preferably of 1 litre capacity)
Other essential items:
  • Toilet kit
  • Personal medical kit
  • Tiffin box (mandatory)
  • Snacks for personal consumption
  • Ladies: Menstrual hygiene products with zip lock bags to carry back waste for disposal. Menstrual cups are recommended over tampons /sanitary napkins.
Tentative Itinerary
May change as per the local authority permission & availability of accommodation

Day 1Reach from Srinagar to Shitkari campsite (7,800 ft)

Hire a shared cab to commute from Srinagar to Sonamarg. The road journey from Srinagar to Sonamarg is as beautiful as the trek itself.

                             

Upon reaching the Soanmarg-Shitkari Basecamp, you will be provided with your Camping tents. Clean sleeping bags for comfortable resting will be provided as well. As for food, you can choose between vegetarian and non-vegetarian meals, as per your preference.

                                                              

The first trekking experience of the programme starts here. For beginners, this gives them a warm-up, their first hands-on experience at trekking. The short trek will take you towards the lush and bountiful Thajiwas Glacier, known as the “the Hidden Jewel of Kashmir”. The Thajiwas Glacier is too picturesque with its little wooden bridges and flora. The first day of trekking ends with a mandatory check-up from the health officer.

                               

Day 2Shitkari (7,800 ft) to Nichnai campsite (11,500 ft)

The actual extensive trekking begins from Shitkari campsite to Nichnai meadows. After breakfast at Shitkari, we can finally set out for Shekkdur, known as the “tabletop”, from where you can see Sonamarg to its entirety.

We continue our ascent after an army post check; where original identification documents like Adhaar cards need to be furnished. You can choose to refill your supplies. As for water, plenty of clean streams are present, with clear drinkable water free of pollutant. As we continue our ascent, you’ll be greeted by the majestic Chinar (maple) tree forests.

Chinar (Maple) forest

The Nichai campsite is at a distance of about 12kms from Shitkari. You canget refreshed at the campsite as you wait for snacks and beverages. We can call it a day after the health officer does the mandatory health check, followed by a delicious dinner.

Nichnai campsite

Day 3Nichnai campsite (11,500 ft) to Vishansar campsite (12,139 ft) via Nichnai pass (13,615 ft)

Vishansar campsite

The day starts with a steep ascent. The weather around grows chillier with the ascent, so make sure you have enough insulation. This trek continues for about 16 kms till Vishansar lake and is going to be the final spot before losing cellular coverage. The campsite is almost 1 km from Vishansar lake (named after Lord Vishnu).

Vishansar lake

The Vishansar Lake feeds the Neelum River which joins the Jhelum river in Pakistan. Once the campsite has been set, you can set down for the day, enjoying the breathtaking beauty of Vishansar Lake, with its clear waters full of mountain trouts. If you can acquire a fishing permit from Srinagar fishery department, no one is going to stop you from trying your hand at fishing. As the day goes by, you will be served your dinner for the day after the health checkup.

 

Day 4Vishansar campsite (12,139 ft) to Gadsar campsite (12,500 ft) via Gadsar pass (13,750 ft)

The journey from Vishansar to Gadsar pass stretches to about 15kms. Gadsar (meaning fish) can be reached followed by a descent along intermittent meadows. Soon after you cross Vishansar lake, you will have a glimpse of the snow-fed Krishnasar Lake adjoining Vishansar lake.

The trek will bring you along the Yamsar Lake (devoted to the Lod of Death, Yama), which has its share of spooky stories, appropriating its name.

The Gadsar Lake will greet you with its abundance of flora, rightfully names the “Valley of Flowers” and, meerkats!

The Gadsar campsite will be your destination of the day.

Day 5Gadsar campsite (12,500 ft) to Satsar campsite (12,000 ft)

The trek to Satsar involves a trek across a glacier with almost no ascend or descend. We trek through a range of barren mountains. And if luck has it, the sky will remain clear, providing you with a view of the majestic ‘Nanga Parbat’.

The trek ends at Satsar, a chain of seven lakes of varying sizes, the seven lakes will leave you in awe of the natural beauty, where the horizon unites the lakes with the sky.

At the campsite, you can finally settle down early, spending the rest of the day for picnic and sports.

Day 6Satsar campsite (12,000 ft) to Gangabal campsite (11,500ft) via Zach pass (13,500ft)

The trek to Gangabal Campsite can prove to be tricky and yet exciting at the same time. To reach the two last alpine lakes in the programme, Nundkol Lake and Gangabal Lake, you must navigate your way through a train of boulders and the steep slope of Zach pass.

However, no matter how tricky the trek is, you’ll be rewarded, handsomely. The trek ends at Gangabal Lake, lying at the foothills of Mt. Harmukh (16,870 ft) (believed to be the abode of Shiva). And what better if such a breathtaking scenery is accompanied by Nundkol Lake, two other unnamed lakes and the Pir-Pranjal range!

Zach pass

The campsite is by the Nundkol lake, across a meadow of yellow flowers, ready to keep you company as you prepare for the trek further to Gangabal campsite.

 

Gangabal Lake

Day 7Gangabal campsite(11,500ft) to Naranaag (8,500 ft)

The last day of the trek is as exciting as the rest, fit to be the climactic end to the programme. This descent is strewn with adventures treks and you can feel your adrenaline rush as you continue your descent across wooden logs and rocks on stream beds. An army camp at Naranaag will mark the end of the trek where you need to present your original identification documents once more. As travellers, the army camp welcomes you to share a refreshment of tea and biscuits.

After the army camp, the trek becomes more and more urban, as you find tea stalls and other signs of human habitation crop up along the way. Your cellphone network will have been restored once more by this point.

At Naranaag we shall come to the end of this trek and depart for Srinagar. Trekkers can share cab to commute from Naranaag to Srinagar.

To read our experience from Kashmir Great Lakes Trek 2020 click http://meandmountain.com/kashmir-great-lakes-trek-2020/

Map
Photos