One of the most dramatic crossover treks in India, Pin Bhaba Pass is a coming together of many shades of the land – the Greens from Kinnaur meet the Browns of Spiti at the home of the Whites on the tall, snowy Pass. The trail is sprinkled with a host of rich, vibrant colors as you journey from one world into the other.
While we know beautiful is an adjective used for all corners of the Himalayas and while that’s absolutely legit, Pin Bhaba Pass gives a whole different meaning to the word. This charming trek is a world of light and colour. As the sunlight transforms the color of the land to a thick shade of golden with the light dripping from it like honeydew, the wide assortment of brightly colored wild flowers use the winds to transport their strong scent through the valley. The trail is so thick with colour, you can sniff it in the air – Pin Bhaba Pass trek has such a pleasant yet strong personality. It is so easy to fall in love with that you don’t even have to try! The feeling you get when you experience the breadth of contrasting landscapes makes you wonder if this is what the wild waters see when they tread through these lands. Is this why rivers are so wise?
While we would urge you to experience this phenomenon called Pin Bhaba first-hand, could we interest you in some photographic magic to warm your intentions to visit here?
The prayer flags, the panoramic view with the assault of greens on one side and browns on the other, while you find yourself in knee deep white (snow), is an experience like no other. Is it a wonder, then, that Pin Bhaba Pass trek remains a favourite among all our trek leaders and trekkers alike? The assortment of landscapes and the beauty it offers in all its form and colour remains unparalleled. From stunning campsites which give you the best views no matter the time of day, to the mysteries of the closed forest canopies of Mulling, the wide expanse of the meadows of Kara, the sheer energy of the river, and the open slopes sometimes full of scree and other times snow, Pin Bhaba is a complete trek; it’s got it all!
Rife with poetry and drama, the landscape of Pin Bhaba is much like the beginning of the Renaissance - full of revelation, appreciation of beauty in all its forms, and connecting distinct worlds. That's just the artist and the historian in us talking though!
The Pin Bhaba Pass Trek is not just about the difference in landscape but it also introduces you to two such distinct Himalayan cultures - the livelihoods, structure of houses, lifestyles - so much that can change from one side of the mountain to another at the same altitude. The realisation that communities and cultures are a product of their environment is a sheer revelation you will witness on this trek.
Pin Bhaba is mildly technical. You can sense its intention to make you slightly uncomfortable by throwing different and exciting challenges your way. From getting your feet wet to cross icy rivers to the insurmountable glee of not being able to control your speed as you slide down slopes of snow, the apprehension of walking on glaciers, climbing loose mountains full of scree on a rainy day are only a few on the list. To walk the trail of Pin Bhaba Pass is to experience fear which gets to the level where it’s scary but still exciting and makes you feel ticklish inside.
We will let the pictures do all the talking for this one but we will say this – if the weather’s got you feeling cold, look to the friendly sheep, dogs and horses for some much-needed warmth!
Pin Bhaba Pass Trek is your passage between two distinct worlds - that from the abundant and alive Bhaba valley in Kinnaur to the dry, resilient and almost galactic Pin Valley in Spiti (the cold desert). And the reward for getting to the highest point of the trek – the Pass - at 4,915 M is that you get a look into both the worlds at the same time. The differences in landscape are so stark that it will blow your mind.
If you are looking to experience the breadth of beauty Himachal has to offer, we recommend this 8-day trek which opens up a world of abundance to you in the form of landscapes, cultures, colors and terrains.