Lamkhaga Pass Trek a Beautiful & Thrilling Journey

Altitude 5326 Meters
Trekking Route : Harsil - Kyarkoti - Sukha tal Pass ke Neeche - Lamkhaga Pass - Nichil Thhat - Dumti Ranikanda - Chitkul
Period : S27-Sep-2013 to 06-Oct-2013
Submitted By : Amit Arora
Restriction : Inner line permit required

The Lamkhaga Pass trek on the Indo-China border at an altitude of 5326 meters is a challenging trek which connects Harshil, the northeastern Garhwal region to Chitkul, last village of Kinnaur valley in Himachal Pradesh. An Inner Line Border Permit is required to carry out the trek. It is a fairly remote trek, which was first crossed by Marco Pallis in 1933. The beautiful route takes you through some of the most remote areas of Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh, like, flourish Jalandhari Gad valley, the lush green meadows, snowcapped peaks and beautiful Baspa valley.

It was a Sunday morning of August 2013, I was holding a cup of hot tea in my hand and with the sip of tea reading newspaper. Suddenly my phone rang; he was my best trekking friend calling me. After having formal talk he purposes me a plan of trek in the last week of September. In recent past; I have successfully completed trek of Tungnath, Madhmaheshwar, Panwali, nearby area of Kothdwar & Haridwar, but it was a special as being in remote area far away from any civilization & thrilling altitude more than 5000 meters. There is no help available in this area; we have to be self-dependent.

There was lot of eagerness & anxiety in my mind. One side of my mind imaging sky touching, snow covered peak of Himalayas, gorgeous bugiyal & dense forest on other side the dread in mind about this adventurous trek. The review of highly experienced team & trust on my best friends prepare me for this hilarious trek.

All team members were highly motivated & eagerly waiting for dawn at their residence in different cities nearby Rishikesh. It was heavily raining in morning & weather was pleasant. We all are getting delayed to start our fabulous journey. Finally a team of seven persons including one doctors assembled in Rishikesh on 27-Sep-2013. Everybody was equipped with latest trekking gears and utility items. The team was also carrying common raw & ready to eat food stuff of 20 persons for almost 12 days, cooking utensils & first aid box.

Without any delay we started our 185 km long road journey to Uttarkashi. It was a trip after a short period when Uttarakhand witnessed flood devastation in the month of June. The roads were badly affected in almost region of the state. I was scared and surprised how driver was driving our cab on such narrow, damaged & treacherous roads. But the stunning view of deep gorge, greenish mountains, fresh & cool air and Scenic drive along the Bagirathi River vitalize me.

The most experienced, our leader Mr. Negi joined us at Chamba a halt on our way to Uttarkashi. 55 years old Mr. Negi has led many rescue operation in Uttarakhand & was nominated for Everest expedition in a joint venture with Indian Army. We reached at Uttarkashi & checked in the hotel.

The extended 08 hours traveling tiredness is pushing me to have deep sleep but time never permit us to relax; meanwhile our leader called a meeting with prearranged team of 08 potters & 01 guide to discuss route plan, formal induction with each other & distribution of material load. Than we come out the hotel for having cocktail dinner & last minute shopping.

28-Sep-2013:- I started my day by visited the famous temple of God Vishwanath one of the major Shiva worship centers for all India. In a day long struggle, the DC has granted us an inner line permit for Lamkhaga Pass Trek. Immediately the team takes out their luggage, boarded to Harshil 75 kms, 4 hours by road. On arrival in Harshil, we checked in small but beautiful hotel cum apple gown down.

29-Sep-2013:- As I wake up in the very chilly morning have a look up out from a window. I was not able to control my exhilaration & steps to come out from hotel. The place is surrounded by sky touching snow capping peaks and apple orchid. The Gangani River was flowing with clean, transparent, cold & fresh colorless water. Harshil is a little-known beautiful hill station & famous for Wilson's Cottage built in 1864.

Now we had actually started our 90 km trek from Harshil to Chitkul via Gangnani Kyarkoti Sukhatal - Lamkhaga Pass -- Nichil Thhat Dumti Ranikanda.

The Trek passes through magnificent view of river, alpine uphill forest, bhojpatra, (the famous "paper tree"), pine, and stately deodar forests, bugyals, spectacular view of the valley, moraines, glaciers and closer views of the snowcapped Himalayan peaks.

There was a 360o view of milky snow covered mountains at Lamkhaga pass looking like haven was the reward for us.

The seasonal ITBP post at Dumti is the first sign of habitation on the other side of the Pass. The ITBP personnel was vigilant and become alert when noticed our movement in valley on binocular. Fortunately they had not opened any fire on us. We were extremely pleased reaching in safe zone. They were quite happy to meet us & offer us water, tea, biscuits as welcome meal.

Chitkul is the highest and last village in the Baspa valley of Kinnaur in Himachal Pradesh. Here we meet with friendly locals and see interesting architectural heritage homes and beautiful temple. Kinnaur valley is well known for their apple orchid & variety of fruits.

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