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Harsil to Chitkul
Connecting one of the most beautiful places in the Garhwal region of Uttarakhand, Harsil, to the last village before the Indo-Tibet border, Chitkul, in Himachal Pradesh, the Lamkhaga Pass Trek is unarguably one of the toughest treks in the Himalayas and certainly one of the least frequented ones due to its close proximity to the border. The trek passes via Kyarkoti which is also the base camp of the famous Black Peak Expedition and then crosses over scree, moraine, steep climbs, crevassed glaciers, boulders and finally the 5280 meters high Lamkhaga Pass to enter the enchanting village of Chitkul. Taking you across ever changing landscapes, culture and tradition, the Lamkhaga Pass Trek is meant for experienced trekkers only with prior knowledge of technical trekking. Surrounded by towering peaks and terrifying glaciers, the Lamkhaga Pass Trek witnesses a significant height gain in a very short period of time because of which proper acclimatisation and a good physical fitness is imperative to successfully undertake this epic journey crossing from one state to the other. The best time to do this trek is in the months of May, June, September and October. Stay on this page for more information on the Harsil to Chitkul - Lamkhaga Pass Trek.
Arrive in Harsil
Arrive in Harsil, one of the most beautiful villages located near Gangotri in the Uttarkashi region of Uttarakhand. It is around 230 km from Dehradun. If you opt for transportation from us then we will pick you up from Dehradun ISBT by 9am and drive to Harsil. Overnight in hotel/guesthouse.
Harsil to Kyarkoti (3840 m) - 14 km
Today we will start our trek to Kyarkoti through thick forests and stunning landscapes. You get to see beautiful variety of flora and fauna and cascading waterfalls en route to the campsite for the night. Overnight in tents.
Kyarkoti to Lamkhaga Pass Base Camp (4420 m) - 12 km
We will trek to the base camp of Lamkhaga Pass at an height to 4420 meters. The ascent is steep and difficult due to snow slopes and moraines. Use of technical equipment might be necessary because of the treacherous terrain and narrow valley. Overnight in tents.
Today we will rest and acclimatise to the high altitude and prepare for the next day's pass crossing which is going to be tough and taxing. Overnight in tents.
Lamkhaga Base Camp to Gundar (4415 m) via Lamkhaga Pass (5281 m) - 13 km
Today we will leave the base early to cross the Lamkhaga Pass. Traversing this pass is very tricky due to its steep terrain and near vertical climb which will require the use of equipment and rope. The view from the pass is mesmerising with glaciers and snowfields on either sides flanked by lofty jagged peaks of the Himalayas. We will continue with the descent towards the Gundar campsite using ropes. Overnight in tents.
Gundar to Dumti (4035 m) - 15 km
Leave the campsite early since today is going to be a long trek with sheer descents. Overnight in Dumti.
Dumti to Rani Kanda (3680 m) - 9 km
The trail to Rani Kanda is absolutely fantastic with the valley full of colourful flowers and stunning waterfalls. It is a sight to behold. Overnight in tents.
Rani Kanda to Chitkul (3435 m) - 9 km
Today we reach Chitkul, the last village of the Baspa Valley and the last village before the Indo-Tibet border. Overnight in hotel/guesthouse.
Depart from Chitkul
If you opt for a transportation from us then we will pick you up from your hotel in Chitkul and drive to Shimla. The total journey is for about 250 km. We will drop you at Shimla ISBT by late evening.
Lamkhaga Pass Trek is a difficult level trek i.e. it requires more strength and endurance than easy and moderate level treks. It is a high altitude trek climbing to the height of 5280 meters. Therefore, it is recommended that you first gain experience of trekking to altitudes of 4500 meters, and then move up a notch with Lamkhaga Pass Trek. On Bikat rating scale Lamkhaga Pass trek difficulty level is 6. For details on trek difficulty level, please read on Bikat Rating Scale.
Should have at least 10-15 trek days in the Himalayas in their kitty. For the trek’s achieving more than 5000 meters, a person must have prior experience of trekking at altitudes of 4000-4500 meters.
If you are not meeting these benchmarks, please use the preparation schedule to improve your fitness till you achieve the above benchmarks.
Pre-monsoon months of mid-May to June and Post-monsoon months of September and October is the best time to do the Lamkhaga Pass Trek.
Click here for packing list.
The trek begins from Harsil which is about 230 km from Dehradun. Harsil is very close to the holy pilgrimage site of Gangotri. There are public buses and shared jeeps running between Dehradun and Sankri. Dehradun is easily accessible through road, rail, and air transport.
By Road: There are no direct buses to Harsil from Delhi. There You can take overnight UKRTC buses and Volvos available from ISBT Kashmere Gate, Delhi to Dehradun. The distance from Delhi to Dehradun is about 247 km. You can also hire a taxi or outstation cab from Delhi to Dehradun.
By Rail: The nearest railway station to Harsil is 250 km away in Dehradun. There are a number of trains running between Delhi and Dehradun like Dehradun Express, Mussoorie Express, Nanda Devi Express. It is advisable to make your train bookings a month in advance.
By Air: The nearest airport from Harsil is Jolly Grant airport in Dehradun which is 240 km away from Harsil. You can reach Dehradun from New Delhi by flight.
The trek ends in Chitkul in Himachal Pradesh which is around 250 km from Shimla. There are indirect public busses and shared taxis from Chitkul to Shimla.
No cellular network beyond Harsil.
Uttarkashi is a beautiful tourist point with many places to see. Visit Vishwanath Temple, the oldest and most sacred temple located on the banks of Bhagirathi River. Kuteti Devi Temple is another highly regarded religious place in town. Manekari Dam is a concrete marvel of Uttarkashi. Experience the village life in Sangem Chhati, a half an hour drive from Uttarkashi district. Nehru Institute of Mountaineering is also located in Uttarkashi. Gangotri is also an ancient town of utmost religious importance to Hindus. Dehradun is located in Uttarakhand which offers a number of places to visit. Robber's cave is a river cave formed in the Himalayas about 8 kilometres from Dehradun. Sahastradhara is a ‘thousand fold spring’ which is famous for its aesthetic beauty. Mindrolling Monastery, the largest Buddhist Vihara of India is another attraction. Lacchiwalla, Malsi Deer Park, Tapkeshwar Temple are a few other to name.
The minimum age limit is 13 years. However, minors aged between 13 to 17 should be accompanied by their parents or guardians. If you are above the age of 60, kindly carry a medical certificate from your doctor that deem you fit for adventure activities like trekking.
Accommodation in Harsil and Chitkul will be in hotel/guesthouse on twin/triple sharing basis. On trekking days, all the trekkers will be accommodated in twin or triple sharing tents. Along with this, there will be also be a toilet tent and a dining tent installed at every campsite as we roll.
We provide 4 seasons tents by Gipfel for higher altitudes which can easily withstand heavy snowfall and storms. They are spacious enough to accomodate 3 people at once with a vestibule to place the backpacks. Our sleeping bags are made up of Heatseeker Pro synthetic insulation that can provide you comfort in -10 degrees celsius. We also use additional fleece liners to have thermal efficiency even in the extreme temperatures of -17 degrees Celsius. If you carry your own sleeping bag, you will get a cashback reward provided that you inform us after you have booked your trek.
Toilet tents will be provided to you on the trek.These are portable toilets tents where a deep pit will be dug. A shovel will be provided inside the tent to cover the waste after you have made your business. You can take a toilet roll inside. Make sure you dig used toilet paper along with the waste. Though water is recommended in place of toilet paper. Please refrain from using wet wipes as they are non-biodegradable. There will be no facility for bathing on the trek. Go through our blog section for tips on how to maintain personal hygiene on treks.
You will be provided with good quality gaiters and microspikes from us depending upon the situation of the snow. Our trek leaders will also be carrying ropes and ice axe.
Vegetarian food will be served throughout the trek. The only non-vegetarian item served on our treks are eggs. Our kitchen staff follows a proper menu for breakfast, lunch and dinner which has been designed in order to fulfil the nutritional requirements of the participants. There will be milk, poha, eggs, muesli/corn flakes, bread and butter served in breakfast. Rice or simple roti sabzi will be packed for lunch. In dinner, you will have dal, egg curry or any other vegetarian dish along with rice, roti, and a dessert item. Packed lunch will be provided to you on the days you are trekking. You are requested to carry your own tiffin box and a mug to consume food. The meals consumed on journey and arrival day are not included in our cost.
You can rent following items from us- Trekking Pole, Trekking Shoes, Fleece Jacket, Rucksack
During the day, the temperature will range from 5-15 degrees Celsius. The nights will get cold dropping the temperature to -2 to -5 degrees Celsius. The higher the altitude you gain, the colder it gets.
On Lamkhaga Pass trek you can expect snows in the first season i.e. May-June. It is difficult to expect snow post monsoons in September when the trek opens again for its second season. October is likely to receive fresh snowfall at higher altitudes if the climate is favorable.
If you want to offload your rucksack, you will have to make a request for offloading a few days prior the trek through an email so that arrangement can be made in advance. You will be charged per day for offloading your rucksack. In case you decide to offload on the spot, you may have to pay a higher price than usual. However offloading your rucksack is not recommended since it is not a safe practice.
A team of participant will be led by a course certified trek leader and a local guide. All participants are requested to abide by what their leader says. There will also be a team of kitchen staff and porters on the trek. We maintain 1:8 ratio of trek leader and participants. All our trek leaders and staff have a certified training in first-aid and rescue operation.
Yes, trekking pole is necessary. If you don’t want to buy one, you can rent it from us on minimal daily basis charges. You can request the renting link from us.
Dehradun has a sufficiently large market. However, do not leave anything for last minute buying as there will be no time for shopping because of immediate journey to Harsil. Harsil on the other hand has a few shops for necessities, however it is recommended to come prepared beforehand.
Yes, it is absolutely safe for solo woman to travel in fix departures. Women on the trek will be sharing tent with each other. In case you are the only woman on the trek, you will be given a separate tent.
Yes, e-certificates will be given at the end of each trek provided that you completed it. It will bear your name, the trek, and the maximum altitude you achieved on the trek.
You will be picked up from Dehradun ISBT by 7am and drive to Harsil. On the last day of the trek you will be dropped at Shimla ISBT.
Expect to reach Shimla by late evening.
ID Proof (Soft Copy to be sent to us in Advance & original to be carried) and Medical Certificate (Soft Copy to be sent to us & original to be carried) are the mandatory documents required for the trek.
Our community is an integral part of us and we take pride in our trekkers and climbers. When you complete at least three days on any trek or expedition with us, you become eligible for our membership and referral programs.
For us, a successful summit is not about reaching the highest point of a mountain but about making it safely back to base.
Cancellations up to 30 days prior to departure date
Between 30 days to 15 days prior to departure
Less than 15 days of departure
No Cash Refund
Cancellations up to 5 days prior to departure date
Cancellations less than 5 days prior to departure