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Parang La Trek

Parang la is the most famous trek route of Spiti from the ancient times and connects people of Spiti to that of Ladakh after crossing the mighty 18600 ft pass. This trek has fantastic view of the mountains and Pare Chu river. This is a photographers paradise as it takes you through the deep gorges and desert environment of Spiti valley to vast landscapes of Ladakh and ending at Tso Moriri Lake. This lake is one of the most beautiful lakes in the world.

This remote trail follows the traditional trade route between the people of Spiti, Changthang and Tibet. It begins in the high altitude meadows of Khibber, the breeding ground of the famous Spiti horses (Chumur) and also homeland of Snow Leopard. The trail descends the Khibber gorge and then climbs over the Parang la (5600 m), the source of the Pare Chu River, the only one of its kind to have its source in India, flow into Tibet and enter the country again in Spiti. Across the pass, the trail follows a broad valley till the confluence of the Pare Chu with the Phirtse Phu at Norbu Sumdo. A river crossing here brings one to an almost incredible change of scenery as we walk towards the Rupshu plains of Changthang, known for the abundance of Kiangs (Tibetan Wild Ass).

Altitude– 5700 meters (18600 feet)

Trail Grade– Steep climbs around the Pass, some river crossings. Challenging is the right word for this trek.

Fitness– Very high

Best Time– Mid July to Sept

 

Itinerary

Day 01: The participants arrive in Manali.

Day 02: Manali – Kaza (3900m)
Duration: 8 hours
The drive to Kaza takes one past Rohtang pass (3970m) and Kunzum La (4551m). From Rohtang, the road descends in to Gramphu, from where the road forks towards Spiti Valley. On the way, are great panaromic views of the biggest glaciers in the Himalayas, Bara Shigri glacier.

Day 03: Acclimatize around Kaza
Soak in Spitian culture with a visit to the ancient monasteries in Dhankar and Tabo. Towards evening, drive upto Khibber, one of the highest motorable villages in the world and the ancient monastery at Kye. Camp for the night in Khibber.

Day 04: Khibber – Dhumle (4260m)
Duration: 2 hours
On the first day of the trek, the trails descends through a gorge and arrives at the last village of the trek, Dhumle. You can see Parang La from here at a distance of about 500m.

Day 05: Dhumle – Thaltak (4560m)
Duration: 5 hours
The trail now turns into a steep climb to take you to the next camp on a meadow at Thaltak.

Day 06: Thaltak – Base of Parang La (5000m)
Duration: 6 hours
The trail takes you down a steep path down to the Parilungbi gorge before ascending to the campsite. The majestic Parilungbi peak stands to the South of Parang La. Look out for sightings of bharal, marmot etc.

Day 07: Base – Karsha Gonma (4930m) via Parang La
Duration: 7 hours
The Parang La at 5600m is one of the highest passes in Western Himalyas and offers some grand views. Descend from the pass to Karsha Gonma which is at the head of the Para Chu valley.

Day 08: Karsha Gonma – Umna (4680m)
Duration: 5 hours
It’s a relaxed walk after the strenous pass. The only challenge is a stream crossing before reaching the campsite.

Day 09: Umna – Rachu Lamo (4470m)
Duration: 5 hours
It’s an easy walk, the trail keeping next to the Para chu river most of the way.

Day 10: Rachu Lamo – Chhumik Shirde (4300m)
Duration: 5 hours
The trail continues next to the Para Chu river. But the campsite is set on the far bank and the day’s challenge is to cross the river.

Day 11: Chhumik Shirde – Kyangdom(4350m)
Duration: 5 hours
The trek continues on the flat ground of the Changthang plateau with some spectacular views along the way.

Day 12: Kyangdom – Tso Moriri (4450m)
Duration: 5 hours
Walking through the Para Chu valley, the valley suddenly opens up and the landscape turns greener as you approach the lake. The valley is famous for the wild life mainly comprising of Kyang (wild ass). Camp midway on the lake’s banks on the way to Karzok.

Day 13: Tso Moriri – Karzok (4267m)
Duration: 8 hours
Walk along the lake right up to the Karzok village. The day might seem never-ending, because though Karzok looks near enough, it takes 8 hours to finally reach the campsite. But the walk is worth it with all the flora and fauna that one gets to see.

Day 14: Karzok – Leh
Duration: 8 hours
A vehicle will pick you up from Korzok and drop you to Leh.

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