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Covid-19 Lockdown: When are we resuming treks in India?

Bikat Adventures

Last updated: 27-06-2020

Bookings for our treks operating from August are now open. Please note that we will be running a limited number of batches for the months of August and September.

 

Many of our trekkers have reached out to us over the last four months wanting to know when we will be reopening treks.

At the beginning of the lockdown, we expected the situation to get better by June. However with no information to back this, we felt we would be placing our community under unnecessary hassle by opening bookings then.

Earlier this month, the Home Ministry of India announced a phased reopening of prohibited activities outside the containment zones in the country. According to the guidelines, lockdown rules will be eased in three phases over the months of June, July and August. By August, we expect the tourism sector will begin operations in a limited capacity, even if not in full swing.

Unlock 1.0, as the first phase has now come to be dubbed, looks different in different states. Most states have relaxed their restrictions on non-tourism based travel. On the tourism front, some regions have begun promoting intra-state tourism while others have allowed inter-state travel with mandatory quarantine after arrival.

 

What does travel during Unlock 1.0 look like in the Himalayan states?

Updates From Himachal:

In the first phase of unlocking that began on the 8th of June 2020, Himachal Pradesh has opened its borders to people visiting the state for non-tourism purposes. Intra and inter-state bus movement are allowed as well and are subject to social distancing norms prevalent at the time of operation. Restaurants and Dhabas have also been allowed to operate at 60% capacity.

Updates from Uttarakahand:

In its Second phase of reopening (from July 1st), the State has opened all the shopping malls, markets, religious places and restaurants for dine-in outside of the containment zones. Tourists visiting from other states will be required to undergo RT-PCR tests from ICMR authorised labs for Covid-19 not earlier than 72 hours from the time of arrival. As per the guidelines, travelers visiting from other parts of the country will be required to upload their test results on to the official web portal of the State. These reports will be veriied by the District Authorities at the border check posts at the time of entry. 

Updates from Jammu and Kashmir:

According to the Unlock 1 guidelines, hotels and restaurants are allowed to resume operation in limited capacity. However inter-state and inter-province movement will not be allowed except for those having valid passes from competent authorities.

Updates from Ladakh:

The tourists spots of Ladakh are currently closed and it is mandatory for outsiders visiting the Union Territory to observe a 7 day quarantine.

Updates from Sikkim:

While hotels and restaurants are now allowed to function at 50% capacity, the State has chosen to keep its borders closed to tourists in the first phase of unlocking.

 

How do trekkers feel about traveling currently?

Fears of contracting the virus have created panic and anxiety everywhere. We conducted a survey recently to understand how trekkers feel about traveling once tourism resumes.

A preliminary analysis of the survey yielded the following results:

A total of 767 trekkers participated in the survey. Out of this, 39.4% of them said they would go on a trek once tourism resumes while 23.6% voted that they are likely to skip travel plans for the rest of this year. 33.8% were unsure and preferred to wait 2-3 months before making a decision. 3.2% chose the ‘others’ option.

 

Covid-19 Lockdown: When are we resuming treks in India?

We are currently going through the responses and sorting the data better to conduct a thorough analysis. We will publish the results once it is ready.

 

What are some precautions we have taken?

We have been working on three areas:

  1. Keeping the local population unexposed to trekkers
  2. Ensuring social distancing between our staff on trails and trekkers.
  3. Social distancing between trekkers at campites.

We will release a detailed list of the precautions we will be enforcing in all the three areas next week.

While making your booking, please note that we have made single tent accommodation available on our trails at a minimal added cost. You can find it under the add-ons section on our itinerary pages. We will be allocating two trekkers in one tent otherwise.

Each trekker will also be alloted their sleeping bag, tent and liner at the start of the trek to ensure there is no mix up. In case you would like to bring your own tent or sleeping bag, you can do so and it will be carried free of cost during the trek. Please ensure that your sleeping bag and tent match the required temperature rating of the trek. In case you aren’t sure if the grade of your gear is suitable for your trek, please call us at +91-85888-78499 and we will assist you with it.

 

What happens if I make my booking and tourism doesn't resume in August?

Based on the announcements and the trends seen both within the country and globally, we expect tourism will resume on a limited scale this August. In case it doesn’t, you will be refunded a full value voucher. The voucher will be valid for the next two years and can be used to rebook the same trek or a different trek.

 

We have opened bookings for the following treks:

List of treks operating in August:

Bhrigu Lake Trek

Deo Tibba Base Camp Trek

Hampta Pass Trek

Kalihani Pass Trek

Kang Yatse II Trek

Kashmir Great Lakes Trek

Manali Khardung La Cycle Expedition

Markha Valley Trek

Pin Bhaba Pass Trek

 

List of treks operating in September:

Bali Pass Trek

Bhrigu Lake Trek

Black Peak (Kalanag) Expedition

Buran Ghati Trek

Deo Tibba Base Camp Trek

Mt. Deo Tibba Expedition

Friendship Peak Expedition

Goechala Trek

Hampta Pass Trek

Har ki Dun Trek

Kalihani Pass Trek

Kalindi Khal Expedition

Kang Yatse II Trek

Kashmir Great Lakes Trek

Manali Khardung La Cycle Expedition

Markha Valley Trek

Nag Tibba Summer Hike

Pin Bhaba Pass Trek

Rupin Pass Trek

 

List of treks operating in October

Bali Pass Trek

Bhrigu Lake Trek

Buran Ghati Trek

Deo Tibba Base Camp Trek

Mt. Deo Tibba Expedition

Friendship Peak Expedition

Goechala Trek

Hampta Pass Trek

Har ki Dun Trek

Kalihani Pass Trek

Kang Yatse II Trek

Kashmir Great Lakes Trek

Nag Tibba Summer Hike

Rupin Pass Trek


If you have queries or would like assistance with something, please write to us at info@bikatadventures.com or call/whatsapp us on +91-7838148127.

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