Opened as recently as the year 2000, this trail is not much frequented by trekkers and is easily one of the finest treks in the Indian Himalaya. The complete isolation we experience between Chiwabhanjang and Dzongri with magnificent high mountain views all along makes this trek an absolute classic. We also get to interact with Yak herders with their huge herds who spend the months between April and Oct in these grazing grounds. Most of the walk is on the ridge or close to it, the ridge forming the border between India and Nepal. We camp some days in Nepal in the beginning and most days in India. There are sections of narrow paths, ups and downs and some scree walking but for the most part, the trail is good used mainly by yak herders in Sikkim and Nepal. We start from a small, picturesque village of Uttarey and walk through dense forests for 2 days passing some Indian Army Posts till we reach Chiwabhanjang. After that we are mostly above the tree line, walking on the ridge with fantastic views on both sides and the snow mountains towering in the distance. Beyond Parey Megu we pass several pristine high altitude lakes which are revered by the locals. We cross unnamed passes regularly with one of note- DafeyBir which is normally very misty and has a steep descent all the way to the river after it. We hit the most popular trail of West Sikkim, the Yuksom-Dzongri-Goechala trail at Dzongri from where we trek on to Goecha-la (4960m), the highest point on this trail from where we actually have to crane our head to look at Khangchendzonga which is just 9km away as the crow flies. Over the next two days we descend to Yuksom, the erstwhile capital of Sikkim where the first king of Sikkim was enthroned and also has a stone Coronation throne. Easily a classic trek due to the variety in terrain, isolation and for absolutely lovely views of Khangchendzonga, its crowning glory!
A Challenging trek would typically last for about two weeks and will take you to altitudes above 5000m / 16,500ft. A routine day will have over 6 hours of hiking and will involve a great deal of ascending and descending on sparsely tread trails. The terrain will be varied on these treks and you can expect walking on moraines / boulder fields and cross small glaciers. Acclimatisation is a concern, the itineraries are carefully planned and allow everyone to acclimatise to the increasing altitude. Exposure to cold temperatures is quite high on these treks, all participants are expected to have good quality equipment & clothing to enjoy these treks.
A mix of wilderness, altitude, terrain and duration makes these treks challenging.
Suited for people with high fitness levels looking for a challenge and capable of enduring two weeks in the outdoors.