A perfect guide to your snow peak adventures

A perfect guide to your snow peak adventures

The fascination of getting to the summit of a snow-covered peak is cherished by all trekkers and mountaineers. Climbing a peak has both its pros and cons but mainly the former. Throughout the trek, one has to face both its rewards and challenges and be up for it from time to time.

We’ve often come across trekkers who want to climb higher peaks without any experience of attempting the lower ones. Without any prior experience, it becomes difficult for some trekkers hence there are some who have to abort the trek half way and return back to the base. There is a lot of preparation that goes into the initial stage before going on a trek and trekkers need to do it step by step. There is also a common mistake the trekkers make which is, they think that if a first-timer can summit, say for eg. Stok Kangri all other first-timers can do the same. They need to understand that body mechanism for one trekker will differ from the other and they will react to certain situations differently.

As you cross the 6000m mark it is altogether a different scenario. There are times when trekkers don’t make it to the summit and the ratio falls down to 40-50%. Even in this case, the probability of the trekkers who make it to the summit tends to favour the experienced trekkers. In most of the cases the trekkers who don’t make it to the summit, lose confidence and interest in trekking. Every peak demands a different level of fitness which trekkers should understand before going ahead with their bookings. Trekkers are of a mindset that the treks which are in demand or talked about would be perfect but the best way to choose any Himalayan peak trek is to match your experience and fitness with the demand of the peak.

Our trek leaders have told us stories of how difficult it is for trekkers to sometimes maintain their pace on the trail because they are not physically and mentally fit and prepared for such high altitudes. There are times when trekkers are hit by AMS and it becomes impossible to trek. The main point that we would like to convey is, there is a lot of investment that goes into booking a Peak and when trekkers cannot make it to the summit or complete the trek, it is both disheartening for them as well as our team. Your safety is our topmost priority.

Therefore, what we would rather suggest you is, to start from the lower altitude peaks and gain some confidence and experience which will then help you to climb those high altitude peaks.

We at TTH have shortlisted a few snow peak treks which are classified on the basis of their difficulty level that are as follows:

  1. Kedarkantha Peak Trek (12,500 ft)
  2. Kanamo Peak Trek (19,550 ft)
  3. Yunam Peak Expedition (20,100 ft)
  4. Stok Kangri Peak Expedition (20,180 ft)
  5. Kang Yatse II Peak Expedition (20,500 ft)
  6. Nun Peak Expedition (23,409 ft)

Heart problem, high blood pressure, asthma, and epilepsy cannot be reconciled on this mission. The climber must not have the conditions mentioned above.

Kedarkantha Peak Trek 

Region:- Uttarakhand 
Duration:- 6 Days 
Grade:- Easy To Moderate 
Max Altitude :- 12,500 Ft. 
Approx Trekking Km:- 20 Km

Kedarkantha Peak Trek

A lot has been said and written about this winter wonderland and why not? Kedarkantha is one such marvellous trek that is well-known for its spectacular campsites. A beginners delight, Kedarkantha offers a terrific trek in the virgin snow which attracts trekkers from all over India. Juda-ka-Talab is one of the most famous campsites on this trail with a majestic view of the lake that lies in front of the trees.  With charming and captivating sights of the snow-capped Himalayas, the verdant greenery, lush landscapes, a myriad collection of flora, frozen ponds, to the sights of mesmerizing peaks, this trek has all the delightful marvels that a trekker wishes to experience on his first trek.

Who Can Go:-

  • First timer can apply, should have some interest in trekking and mountaineering
  • The climber must be fit and have sufficient stamina to cover 5 km of distance in 45 minutes without a stress
  • The climber should be able to carry a 10 kg backpack

Read More About The Trek


Kanamo Peak Trek

Region:- Himachal 
Duration:- 7 Days 
Grade:- Moderate 
Max Altitude :- 19,550 Ft. 
Approx Trekking Km:- 27 Km

Kanamo Peak

A trek that offers you some of the stunning views from the Kinnaur, Lahaul and Spiti region from an elevation of more than 19,600 feet should be on a bucket list for every trekker. It offers a different quality of the Himalayas—arid mountain deserts and sparse vegetation with only a touch of snow in the summit stretch. The villages in the Spiti region have some of the most charismatic settings. One such village is Kibber from where the trek commences. The villages on the Kaza to Kibber stretch are famous for growing sweet green peas and the lush green patches of pea fields amidst the mountain desert is a sight to behold!

Although the trek is just 27 kms it requires a good level of fitness and an experience of one Himalayan trek. You will get to experience a mixed ground trail of snow and brown textured mud. Though you are not likely to find deep snow in Kanamo in August until the summit climbing stretch, strong advice goes for carrying crampons and other snow trekking essentials.

Who Can Go:-

  • Experience of any high altitude trek at least 1 trek.
  • The climber must be fit and have sufficient stamina to cover 5 km of distance in 30 minutes without a stress.
  • Climber should be able to carry a 10 to 15 kg expedition bag pack.

Read More About The Trek


Yunam Peak Expedition

Region :- Himanchal 
Duration :- 8 Days 
Grade :- Difficult 
Max Altitude :- 20,100 Ft. 
Approx Trekking Km:- 22 Km

Yunam Peak

One of the rare six-thousander that is equivalent to Stok Kangri peak in Ladakh, the Yunam Peak expedition is not for the faint-hearted trekker.

The Yunam peak is located to the far side of  Himachal Pradesh where the mountains are rugged and sparse in greenery. The highest motorable road of the state ends in Baralacha La, only a few kilometres from Yunam base camp, where the pathways of Ladakh, Spiti, and Lahaul intersect.

Climbers who are attempting the Yunam peak should have at least done one high altitude Himalayan trek as it is a challenging trail. The expected physical agitation and unpredictable weather conditions at the higher reaches of the trek and have the potential of a deathly challenge. Climbers must put grit against grit and overcome this hurdle with strong will and determination.

Who Can Go:-

  • Experience of high altitude trek, at least 1 trek of more than 4500 mt. or 14,700 ft.
  • The climber must be fit and have sufficient stamina to cover 5 km of distance in 30 minutes without a stress.
  • Climber should be able to carry a 10 to 15 kg expedition bag pack.

Read More About The Trek


Stok Kangri Peak Expedition

Region:- Leh, Ladakh, J & K 
Duration:- 8 Days 
Grade:- Difficult 
Max Altitude :- 20,180 Ft. 
Approx Trekking Km:- 40 Km

Stok Kangri Peak

The highest mountain in the Stok Range of the Himalayas in the Ladakh region of north-west India, Stok Kangri has always attracted trekkers who are into serious trekking. A trek that provides you an entire view of the Zanskar valley with all the snow-capped peaks in the backdrop should definitely be on your bucket list.

Stok Kangri is one such peak that has gain tremendous popularity in the last few years. Illustrating the Himalayan range with a wider perspective, this trek embraces deserted surroundings and offer its trekkers the opportunity to experience the complete peace. The entire trail has incorporated many ridges so you can feel the sudden change in scenery. In winter, the whole landscape attains a perfect magnificence.

Who Can Go:-

  • Experience of high altitude trek at least 2 treks of more than 4500 mt. or 14,700 ft.
  • The climber must be fit and have sufficient stamina to cover 6 km of distance in 35 minutes without a stress.
  • Climber should be able to carry a 10 to 15 kg expedition bag pack.

Read More About The Trek


Kang Yatse II Peak Expedition

Region :- Leh, Ladakh, J & K 
Duration :- 11 Days 
Grade :- Difficult 
Max Altitude :- 20,500 Ft. 
Approx Trekking Km:- 80 Km

Kang Yatse II

The spectacular looking Kang Yatse II is the most important peak in the Markha Valley. It is accessible through the Markha valley from both the sides. The Western summit, Kang Yatse II is at an elevation of 6250m which is a bit less busy compared to its neighbour Stok Kangri. It is one of the most preferred peaks when it comes to climbing the 6000-er but you should be properly acclimatized before attempting this peak. Some fascinating views of Nun Kun & Zanskar range to the west and K2, Broad Peak and Gasherbrum Massif to the far North.

One of the highlights of summiting the Kang Yatse II is without requiring professional mountaineering skills you can be at an elevation of more than 6200 meters. Climbing this peak also can be taken as your introduction to basic mountaineering. The altitude, terrain and gradient throw a lot of challenges to the trekkers which they need to overcome to reach the summit. Kang Yatse II should definitely be on your list if you are a true adventure seeker.

Who Can Go:-

  • Experience of high altitude trek at least 2 treks of more than 4500 mt. or 14,700 ft.
  • The climber must be fit and have sufficient stamina to cover 6 km of distance in 35 minutes without a stress.
  • Climber should be able to carry a 10 to 15 kg expedition bag pack.

Read More About The Trek


Nun Peak Expedition

Region :- Leh, Ladakh, J & K
Duration :- 21 Days
Grade :- Difficult
Max Altitude :- 23,409 ft

Nun Peak

Towering at an elevation of 7135 meters, this peak in Suru Valley watches over the entire Zanskar area. The higher peak in the Nun Kun massif, Mount Nun’s glittering presence could be felt from the moment you set foot in Leh with the twin peaks manifesting brilliantly along the road to Kargil. To mount this peak is a task for darers with true grit. Intensive glacial formations, icefall slopes, thoroughly crevassed surfaces, knife-edge cliffs, vertical ice walls, and unpredictable weather beset the expedition to Nun with thrills of a thousand kinds.

Offering a varying degree of difficulty, this herculean expedition has all aspects of serious technical climbing thrown in—fixed roping, using ice axe in front point climb, climbing with ascender-descender, carabineers, snow stakes or anchors, snow pickets, and other things. Fitness training and psychological preparation will go a long way in this project and it is highly necessary that you have substantial experience in mountain climbing before embarking on this stupendous high altitude journey.

Who Can Go:-

None but the sturdiest of climbers are screened for this expedition. Though we have not set the benchmark for technically experienced climbers only, keeping this expedition option open for non-technical climbing enthusiasts too, here are the fitness criteria one has to match absolutely for conquering Nun with us:

  • Basic mountaineering course or, experience of successfully climbing at least 2 peaks of more than 6000 mt. or 19,700 ft.
  • The climber must be fit and have sufficient stamina to cover 6 km of distance in 35 minutes without a stress.
  • Climber should be able to carry a 10 to 15 kg expedition bag pack.

Read More About The Trek

Written By:-

Annirudha Kulkarni

(TTH official content writer)

 

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