Pristine lakes nestled between high altitude mountain-passes is what comes to mind when hearing the name of ‘Kashmir Great Lakes.’ No doubt, the beautiful turquoise color lakes are the dominant factor in this trek, but that’s not all, not by a long shot. This trek has many more things to offer that are bound to take your breath away.
Here is a list of five such reasons, apart from the high altitude alpine lakes, to take up ‘Kashmir Great Lakes’ as your next trek:
5 Reasons why Kashmir Great Lakes should be next on your to-do list of treks.
1. Get to Know The Kashmiri Culture:
What’s better than to bond with the locals to know about the history and culture of a place? Enjoy bonding with the local guides- they have a plethora of stories to tell about how Kashmir was ruled by Buddhists followed by Hindus and finally by Mughals, pertaining to its current Mughal influence. Talk to the villagers on the way, and experience the hospitality of local shepherds. I bet the mountain talks will be entirely different than what you will experience while exploring the city.
2. Walk in the Scented Pine Tree Forest:
Are you one of those who finds descents better than ascents? I am, but this one took a toll on my knees and feet. The descent down from Gangbal to Naranag seems like an endless walk, but the view you get while descending down becomes one of the reasons to do Kashmir Great Lakes. I have never experienced such fragranced pine tree forests in any of the other treks. The pine tree fragrance is so rejuvenating and the valley is so peaceful that your mind will be forced to retreat back to the world of its own thoughts. Seldom are things so hard to explain and so indescribable to experience. Trust me, this is one of those.
3. Physically and Mentally Challenging:
Everyone has the notion that Kashmir Great Lakes is a moderate trek. I would say it is a moderate-altitude trek, but it shapes up quite differently when it comes to physical and mental strength. Usually in other treks, you look forward to three to four days of climb and then descent afterward, but Kashmir Great Lakes gives a fight to your mental ability where you have to ascend and descend a great deal of altitude almost every day. It is like you celebrate the pass crossing one day and another day you again are fighting the climb for the next pass. Completing KGL is something you can always be extremely proud of.
4. Spot Five Lakes from Gadsar Pass
Yes, that’s true! Climb a little higher at the Gadsar Pass, and you can spot the Vishansar and Kishansar Lake to the left side of the pass, with three of the Gadsar Lakes toward the right side. Wild flowers against the contrasting background of snow-covered mountains are surely a delight to one’s eyesight, and that’s not it. On the way to Satsar camp site, you will come across many such small lakes. How many you can count? Enjoy your lunch break at Gadsar Lake, right across the glacier.
5. Dal Lake or ‘Srinagar’s Jewel’:
When in Kashmir, visiting Dal Lake is a must-do thing. Reach Srinagar by afternoon on the last day of the trek, and retire back in your boathouse to the colorful sunset hues. Treat yourself to the local delicacies at floating restaurants, try ‘Wazwan,’ the multicourse meal for non-vegetarians, and buy souvenirs from the floating market.
These factors are enough to motivate me, to take up this trek all over again and hopefully are for you guys as well. So now, when you plan your adventure to Kashmir Great Lakes, you know it will actually be much more than that.