Bhrigu Lake Trek

Bhrigu Lake sits snug between two high altitude ridges towards the east of Rohtang Pass. The remarkable thing about this trek is that one can reach an impressive altitude of 14,000 ft and experience snow over just three days of trekking!

  • Trek to a picturesque alpine lake at an altitude of 14,000 feet.
  • Camp at lovely meadows at Rola Kholi.
  • Experience snow with just three days of trekking!

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Photo Courtesy: Nikita Bhatia

The Pandu Ropa Campsite in September

Why This Trek ?

REGION / DIFFICULTY / HIGHEST ALTITUDE:

Himachal Pradesh / Moderate / 14,009 ft

DURATION / AVERAGE TEMPERATURE:

4 days/ Day time temperature: 13-18°C Night time temperature: 0-7°C

Must read about Bhrigu Lake Trek

Trek Fee Per Person
Rs. 6,750

(Includes all costs of the trek from Manali to Manali) Service tax at 9% is payable on the trek fee

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Do the Bhrigu Lake Trek for the meadows

A lot of trekkers do the Bhrigu Lake trek to get to the famous lake. While the Bhrigu lake is definitely worth getting to, this is only one of the reasons for you to do this trek.

It is the meadows on the Bhrigu Lake trek that are a real treat. I am not sure you understand why trekking on them is such a big thing. So let me take a moment to explain.

If you want to see high altitude alpine meadows in our country, chances are that you would have to trek for at least 2-3 days before you can step onto one. This is because most alpine meadows start at around 11,000 feet, when you have just crossed the tree line. This requires 2-3 days of hard trekking to reach. That’s why most people in India go gaga over Europe and Switzerland though such meadows are right here in our backyard.

On most high altitude treks in India you’ll stumble upon meadows from a thick forest, usually of oak. The sudden change in views are startling and beautiful. While most of these meadows are a delight to behold, some are more special than others. The ones on the Bhrigu lake trek are among these.

Trekking through the meadows en-route Bhrigu Lake.

The special meadows stretch far and wide, undulating, almost like an endless carpet. You’ll find horses galloping and sheep grazing. You can walk barefoot feeling the dew under your feet. Everywhere you see it is lush green against the deepest blue sky. But what will take your breath away is the view. Sitting on the grassy knolls you are surrounded by snow peaks that stretch to the horizon. You are sitting in your own garden in the sky.

That’s probably why I loved the Bhrigu Lake trek so much. I have been on a lot of high altitude meadows in our country — the ones at Bedni and Dayara Bugyal really stand out. So do the Dayara meadows on the Buran Ghati trek. When I stepped on the Bhrigu meadows, boy, was I impressed!

The trek is an out and out grassland trek. You step into the meadows within ten minutes of starting out of the fabulous Gulaba base camp. Considering Gulaba is just an hour’s drive from Manali, it makes accessing Bhrigu Lake meadows very easy. Who could ever imagine that such beautiful meadows existed right above Manali?

What I really like about the Bhrigu meadows is the way they change texture, shape and colour but stay with you all along the trek – right until Bhrigu lake. It makes the trek special because getting a chance to be in such alpine meadows all along a trek is a rare opportunity. It feels more pristine when the meadows are covered with snow. Camping on these meadows twice has been a doubly rewarding experience.

At the camp, in the night when everything is quiet, the sky lights up with a display of millions of stars. Our galaxy, the milky way, stretches from one corner of the sky to other. You can see more stars than the sky! You can get this kind of a celestial display only when you step into a vast openness and an altitude of around 11,000 feet. So it’s not a singular experience – it’s something that you would want to keep coming back to!

While I have talked a lot about the meadows of Bhrigu Lake, I must admit, getting to the lake is thrilling too. At almost 14,000 feet, this glacial lake changes colour and shape every week! Sometimes it is totally frozen. At times its water is a royal blue. At other times an emerald green. Just to see what colours the lake is during your week of the trek, it is worth doing the trek.

Many of our trekkers have kept our Deoriatal or Kedarkantha as their first Himalayan trek experience. I think you can add Bhrigu Lake to that list.

The Bhrigu Lake during June.

Difficulty level and Preparation

The Bhrigu Lake trek is classified as a trek of moderate difficulty. You start from an altitude of 8,530 ft at Gulaba and you reach a highest point of 14,009 ft at the lake. This means you gain around 5,480 ft over just two days of trekking. This can make the trek quite demanding and requires you to be physically fit. Click here to learn how to prepare for the trek.

Who is the trek meant for?

Do you love snow and are you strained for time? Then this trek is the perfect option for you. It gives you the chance to experience snow on just the second day. The base camp, Gulaba is only 24 km from Manali, and the duration of this trek is 3 days, making it the perfect trail near Manali. It is perfect for families too.

Horses at Pandu Ropa PC: Apurva Raj

ATM point and Mobile connectivity

If you wish to withdraw money before the trek, do so at Manali, since this is the last place you will find an ATM. BSNL mobile network is available throughout the trek route.

Places to see

After the trek you can spend time exploring the popular hill station of Manali. Please note that this is a suggestion and Indiahikes does not make any arrangements for the same.

SHORT ITINERARY

Day 1: Pick up from Manali bus stand at 2 pmDrive from Manali to Gulaba and short trek to the campsite.
Day 2: Gulaba (8,530 ft) to Rola Khuli (12,566 ft); 3-4 hours, 7 km
Day 3: Rola Khuli (12,566 ft) to Bhrigu Base (12,500 ft) camp via Bhrigu Lake (14,009 ft); 5-6 hours, 10 km
Day 4: Bhrigu base (12,500 ft) camp to Gulaba (8,530 ft); 5-6 hours, 10 km. Drive to Manali. You are expected to reach Manali by 3.30 pm.

 

Detailed trek itinerary

Day 1: Reach Gulaba from Manali

  • Altitude: 8,530 ft
  • Time taken: 1 hour drive + 1 hour trek. Pick up from Manali at 2:00 PM

Take an overnight bus from Delhi and reach Manali before noon. We will pick you up from Manali at 2 pm to drive to Gulaba. The 22 km route to Gulaba will take you on the Manali-Rohtang Pass road, past Kolang, Palchan and Kothi. You will get fabulous views of pine forests and mountains as soon as you cross Kothi. Once a quiet hamlet, Gulaba is buzzing with tourists in transit to Rohtang Pass. You will find a few road side dhabas here

Bhrigu Lake Day 1 1-15 (2)
On the way to Gulaba. PC – Nikita Bhatia

The Gulaba camp site is a short trek away from the hamlet (14th scissor bend on the right side of the road head). Trek steadily underneath forest cover, passing through open grasslands every now and then. The trail turns steeper after around 20 minutes. Make note of silver oak, cedar and birch trees on the trail here. These are few of the most prominent trees in the Himalayas. There are also a few rivulets that flow by. After around 20 minutes, the trail enters an open meadow where shepherds camp.

Apart from views of the meadows ahead, the Gulaba campsite gives a good break for acclimatization before hitting Rola Khuli at 12,566 ft.

Bhrigu Lake Day 1 1-15 (7)
Camping at Gulaba. PC – Nikita Bhatia

Day 2: Gulaba to Rola Khuli

  • Altitude: 8,530 ft to 12,566 ft
  • Time taken: 3-4 hours, 7 km
  • Trek gradient: Moderate; Initial mix of flat walks and gradual ascents is followed by a steep climb for about 2 hours.
  • Water sources: None on the trail; ensure you carry 2 litres of water from Gulaba

Observe Mt. Hanuman Tibba towering over the meadow in the background. Below Hanuman Tibba are the Seven Sister peaks seated in the Beas Kund Valley. Turn right from the upper ridge of the meadow and head south. The second forested cover begins here.

Bhrigu Lake Day 2 1-21 (4)
The Kolang Nallah. PC – Nikita Bhatia

Ahead, there’s a milky white rivulet flowing down the imposing Kolang Valley. This is Kolang Nallah. Walk straight towards it until you are walking along the banks of the stream. You have to cross over to the other side of the nallah. Look for a wooden makeshift bridge to cross over. The bridge is usually washed away during monsoon. If such is the circumstance, look for suitable logs to hop on and get onto the other side. Here, a trail on the right ascends towards a ridge (from south east). As you climb up the ridge, pause to enjoy brilliant views of Manali and Solang Valley. From here, Rola Khuli is around 2 hours away.

Bhrigu Lake Day 2 1-21 (12)
The Rola Khuli campsite. PC – Nikita Bhatia

Rola Khuli is a scenic grazing ground used by local shepherds. Located at the base of Bhrigu Lake, it makes for an ideal camping spot. You water source here is Chor Nallah, which flows across the camping ground.

Day 3: Rola Khuli to Bhrigu Lake and then to Bhirgu base camp. Excursion to Pandu Ropa

  • Altitude: 12,565 ft to 14,009 ft and then to 12,500 ft
  • Time taken: 5-6 hours, 10 km
  • Trek gradient: Moderate; with climbs through boulders and grass and a few steep descents. Initial ascent for about an hour followed by a descent and level walks.
  • Water sources: Bhrigu lake, streams along the way

Start early as you have a lot of distance to cover today. You have to trek a height of around 1,348 ft to reach Bhrigu Lake.

Bhrigu Lake Day 3 1-92 (3)
Beginning the ascent to Bhrigu Lake. PC – Nikita Bhatia

Bhrigu Lake rests between two high-altitude ridges. You begin with hiking to the first ridge, which is an hour away. The trail slowly turns from green to brown and white. As you reach the ridge, look for an oval glacial lake in the distance. Depending on the season, the lake is either surrounded by snow or fresh grass, along with alpine flowers.

Bhrigu Lake Day 3 1-92 (8)
The Bhrigu Lake in all its glory. PC – Nikita Bhatia

On a clear day, you can catch a stunning panoramic view of Pir Pinjal and Dhauladhar ranges. Also, major peaks such as Indrasen, Deo Tibba and Hanuman Tibba stand majestically before you. The lake is normally enveloped in fog which can make finding the route tricky. It is always advisable to hire a local guide.

After spending time at the lake, head down the other side towards  Pandu Ropa and Vashisht. The meadows on this side are as grand as the ones you came from. They spread ahead for miles. The campsite – Bhrigu Base is not too far away. A couple of levels down in the meadows where small streams criss-cross is  your campsite of the day.

An evening walk exploring the meadows at Pandu Ropa is not to be missed. It will take a couple of hours in the evening for you to soak in the meadows.

Day 4: Bhrigu Base Camp to Gulaba

  • Altitude: 12,500 ft to 6,791 ft
  • Time taken: 6 hours, 10 km
  • Trek gradient: Easy. Mostly descending.
  • Water sources: Carry sufficient water from the camp site. You can refill your water bottles from streams along the way.

Today’s trek is an easy one. You get back to Gulaba through the meadows you came up from, skipping Rola Khuli campsite totally. The descent can be  a bit steep but is good on your legs given you are always in the meadows. It takes about 5 hours to reach Gulaba. Gulaba at 9,000 ft is a better exit for your knees and feet as compared to Vasisht at 7,000 ft.

How to get fit for the Bhrigu Lake trek

The Bhrigu Lake trek is classified as a trek of moderate difficulty. You start from an altitude of 8,530 ft at Gulaba and you reach a highest point of 14,009 ft at the lake. This means you gain around 5,480 ft over just two days of trekking. This can make the trek quite demanding. Here are the 3 areas that you must work on. Scroll below to see a chart that will help you to get fit in 4 weeks.

Cardiovascular endurance – Target 5 km in 30 minutes before the start of the trek
On the Bhrigu Lake trek, you have to cover 14 km on the third day and 7 km on the other two days. This requires a good amount of endurance. You can begin by jogging everyday. Start slow and increase your pace everyday. Swimming, cycling and stair climbing without too many breaks in between can help too. 

Strength – Target 3 sets of 15 squats in each set before the start of the trek
This is another area you should work on. When you’re climbing from  Rola Kholi to Bhrigu Lake, you’re gaining around 1,500 ft. Although this is a reasonable altitude gain, the terrain is not too friendly. You have to walk through snow and scree. It could be taxing for your legs. For this, strengthening your legs will help. You can do squats to strengthen them. Start with 3 sets of squats, with 8 squats in each set and work towards meeting your target within 3 weeks.

Flexibility
Another aspect that will help you trek comfortably is flexibility. For this, you can do some stretching exercises – stretch your hamstrings, quadriceps, hip flexors, lower back muscles and shoulders regularly. On your trek, it is important that you arrive on the slopes with your muscles relaxed. Carrying a backpack, however light, can become a strain after a while. These exercises will help you to be in good shape before the trek.

Here is a guide to help you get fit for the trek in 4 weeks.

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One month trek fitness routine for moderate treks

Working out indoors
If you can’t go out and jog because of time and space constraints, here’s a video you can use to work out indoors.

What to take on the Bhrigu Lake trek

Bare necessities

  1. Trekking shoes: There will be several slippery patches on the Bhrigu Lake trail, and you will need trekking shoes with good grip. Sports shoes will not be comfortable. You can watch this video to learn to choose the right trekking shoes. You can get Forclaz 600 from Decathlon.
  2. Backpack (40-60 litres): A backpack with sturdy straps and a supporting frame. Rain cover for backpack is essential.

The Bhrigu Lake trek is organised in the months of July and September. Expect light showers during these months. Carrying a poncho will be extremely helpful.

Clothes

  1. Three warm layers: At the campsites, especially the higher ones – Rola Kholi and Bhrigu Base camp – the temperature after sundown will drop to around 2-6 degrees. You will need at least three warm layers (two lights layers such as fleece and woollen and one padded jacket) for this trek.
  2. Two trek pants: One pair of pants should suffice for this trek. But you can carry one spare pair in case the first one gets wet. Wear one pair and carry one pair. 
  3. Two collared t-shirts: Carry light, full sleeved t-shirts that prevent sun burns on the neck and arms. Again, wear one and carry one.
  4. Thermals (Optional): Those who are more susceptible to cold can carry thermals to wear at night.

Accessories

  1. Sunglasses: Sunglasses are to prevent snow blindness. There might be snow closer to the lake, so carry a pair of sunglasses.
  2. SuncapThe sun feels stronger while walking on the mountain slopes. Carry a suncap to protect your head and neck from the heat, especially if you’re trekking later in the day.
  3. Synthetic hand gloves: One pair of fleece or woolen hand gloves. One pair of water proof/resistant, wind proof gloves.
  4. Balaclava: You may use woolen scarves instead as well.
  5. Socks (2 pairs):  Apart from two sports socks, you can take a pair of woolen socks for the night.
  6. Headlamp/LED torch: Mandatory
  7. Trekking pole: Watch this video to understand why you need a trekking pole.

Others

  1. Daypack (20 litres): If you are offloading your backpack, you will need a smaller backpack to carry water, medical kit and some light snacks.
  2. Toiletries: Sunscreen, moisturiser, light towel, lip balm, toilet paper, toothbrush, toothpaste. If you plan to use wet wipes or sanitary napkins on the trek, make sure you carry a zip lock bag to put used tissues and napkins. Bring this ziplock bag back with you to the city and do not dispose wet tissues and sanitary napkins in the mountains.
  3. Cutlery: Carry a spoon, coffee mug and a lunch box. We insist on trekkers getting their own cutlery for hygiene reasons.
  4. Two water bottles: 1 litre each
  5. Plastic covers: While packing, use plastic bags to compartmentalise things and carry a few extra plastic bags for wet clothes.

Mandatory Personal Medical Kit 

  1. Diamox – 10 tablets (to prevent AMS)
  2. Crocin – 6 tablets (fever)
  3. Avomine – 4 tablets (motion sickness)
  4. Avil 25mg – 4 tablets (allergies)
  5. Combiflam – 4 tablets (Pain killer)
  6. Disprin – 6 tablets (headache)
  7. Norflox TZ & Lomofen– 6 tablets each (diarrhea)
  8. Digene – 10 tablets (acidity)
  9. Omez/ Rantadine – 10 tablets (antacids)
  10. Crepe bandage – 3 to 5 meters
  11. Gauze – 1 small roll
  12. Band aid – 10 strips
  13. Cotton – 1 small roll
  14. ORS – 10 packets
  15. Betadine or any antiseptic cream
  16. Moov spray (aches, & sprains)

Mandatory Documents

Please carry the below documents. Document two and three need to be downloaded (PDF), filled in, signed and handed over to the trek leader at the base camp.
  • Original and photocopy of government photo identity card- (driving license, voters ID, etc.)
  • Medical Certificate (first part to be filled by a doctor and second part by the trekker) – Download PDF
  • Disclaimer form (to be filled by the trekker) – Download PDF

If you’re shopping or packing for the trek, you can download this quick and simple checklist for offline use.

indiahikes-equipment

 

Trek fee: Rs. 6,750/-*

Service tax at 9% is payable on the trek fee.

Inclusions:

  • Accommodation during the trek (camping)
  • Transport charges from Manali to Gulaba and return from Gulaba to Manali
  • All meals – vegetarian
  • Trekking permits and forest camping charges
  • Trekking equipment (tents, sleeping bags, ice axes, ropes, etc.)
  • Safety equipment (first aid, medical kit, oxygen cylinders, stretcher)
  • Services of an expert trek leader (qualified in basic/advanced mountaineering courses)
  • Services of an expert trek team (guides, cooks, helpers, porters/mules)

Exclusions:

  • Backpack offloading charges – Rs 250* per day plus service tax of 9%. Charges for last minute offloading during the trek will be Rs 335 per day plus service tax of 9%. The backpack cannot weigh more than 9 kg. No suitcases/strolleys/duffel bags will be allowed.
  • Personal expenses of any kind
  • Anything apart from the inclusions

Terms & Conditions

1. Cancellation: If a trek is called off at the last moment due to a natural calamity/unforeseen circumstances (like rains, earthquake, landslides, strike, bandh etc), Indiahikes will issue a trek voucher for the full amount. The voucher can be redeemed for the same trek or another trek in the next one year.

In case, you wish to cancel your trek, please e-mail us at cancel@indiahikes.in. Cancellation requests are not taken over phone.

The cancellation charges are as under.

  • Cancellations prior to 30 days from the start of the trek — full refund.
  • Cancellation between 30 days and 20 days to the start of the trek — 50% refund.
  • Cancellation less than 20 days to the start of the trek — no refund.
Please note: In case of refund, there will be a deduction of 4% (bank charges) from the total fee you have paid. 
2. The trek fee includes all cost from the start of the trek at Manali to the end of the trek at Manali.
3. Pick up: Trekkers are picked up from Manali by 2:00 pm.

Note: In case you do not want the Indiahikes pick up, please let us know at least 20 days in advance.

4. Backpack carrying: Indiahikes expects all trekkers to carry their own backpacks. All common gear will be carried by the support team. If for some reason a trekker is unable to carry his or her backpack, he/she can offload the same by paying an additional charge.

Backpack offloading charge is Rs. 250 per day plus 9% service charge. Partial offloading is not allowed. Charges for last minute on slope offloading will be Rs. 335 per day plus 9% service charge. The backpack cannot weigh more than 9 kg. No suitcases/strolleys/duffel bags will be allowed.

5. Emergency during trek:

During a trek a medical or any other emergency might arise. If for any reason you are sent down from the trek, Indiahikes will make arrangements for your return to the base camp or nearest road head. A staff will accompany you. He may not be a trained personnel.

Evacuation or dealing with emergencies is extremely difficult in the mountains. It is time consuming as well. A normal trek of 2 hours may take 6 hours in an emergency (a sick person is not easy to evacuate). Doctors do not go along with a team. Doctors are not available at the base camp or nearest road head either. Indiahikes trek leaders are trained to administer first aid and know how to deal with issues related to the mountains. However, they are not doctors.

Registering for this trek is an understanding that you have read up on the difficulties of high altitude trekking and understand the risks. You have also understood what AMS, HAPE and HACE are. You have taken efforts to educate yourself and you are in a position to manage your own altitude related emergency.

6. Fitness: A high altitude trek in the Himalayas requires considerable fitness. Your body needs to train itself to process more work with lower levels of oxygen. Cardiovascular training before a trek is critically important. Training must include strength and flexibility workout. We have laid out the eligibility criteria here. Registering for the trek is an understanding that you will undertake the mandated fitness training. Indiahikes has the right to reject candidates who do not meet our eligibility requirement at the base camp.

7. Non-liability: Indiahikes is not responsible for any loss/damage to your gear or equipment or other belongings during the trek.

8. Payment: Payment for the trek can be done online through credit/debit card or net banking. Cheque/draft or cash is not accepted. Payment can be done only after you have received an email confirming your position on the trek. An email containing a link that allows you to make the payment online will be sent to you within 12 hours of your registration.

Note: We do not work on weekends so all registrations done on the weekend is confirmed only by Monday morning.

9. Drinking and smoking during the trek is strictly prohibited. If found flouting the rules, your participation on the trek will be cancelled with immediate effect.

10. Safety Protocols: 

a. While our itineraries are designed to allow for adequate acclimatisation, most treks in the Indian Himalayas climb quickly, which is called forced ascents. Unavailability of camp sites and the Indian Himalayan terrain are the reasons for this. There are chances that you will feel the effects of altitude sickness and oxygen deprivation while on this trek. Please be aware that your trek leader may deem it unsafe for you to continue trekking at any time, and arrange for you to descend to a lower attitude.

b. Our trek leaders will conduct routine health checks at all camps to measure oxygen saturation, pulse and blood pressure. Indiahikes reserves the right to exclude any trekker from climbing higher on the trek without refund if the trekker’s vital readings are below accepted norms for that altitude. These norms are available with Indiahikes trek leaders.

c. This is a high altitude trek with rough, rocky and snowy terrain. It is important that you are a fit and confident walker in mountain terrain, able to manage ascents and descents by yourself within a reasonable time. Indiahikes reserves the right to send a trekker back if, in the opinion of our trek leader, they are unable to complete the itinerary without requiring exclusive assistance. Please realistically self-assess your fitness and suitability for this trek before registering.

The Bhrigu Lake is marked as a moderate trek. It is moderate because of the altitude gained over just 2 days – 6,500 ft at Manali to 14,000 ft at Bhrigu lake. This is called a forced ascent, where your body does not have enough time to acclimatise. So there is a chance that you might get affected by Acute Mountain Sickness. In order to have a safe trek,here is some information that you must know if you have registered for this trek. At Indiahikes, we believe that as long as you are well-informed and well-prepared, you can survive easily at high altitudes.

What Indiahikes does to ensure your safety

Our philosophy is simple. We ingrain safety aspects in the people we work with, in the processes that we follow, and in the equipment we carry. All our trek leaders are trained repeatedly on safety issues and protocols. Most issues are resolved with their intervention.

Right from the time you decide to register for the trek till the last day of the trek, these safety procedures will be running in the background. We have listed a few of them below:

1. Fitness criteria before registration

Over years of organising high altitude treks, we have found that safety issues thrive amongst those who are unfit and unprepared for the trek. So we have introduced an eligibility criteria for the Bhrigu lake trek. Anyone who wants to register for this trek has to meet the fitness requirements, with the ideal BMI. The BMI and fitness regime will require proof. A high altitude trek is not to be taken casually.

2. Monitoring health on a trek

Any abnormal reading will be paid special attention to and action will be taken immediately

On the Bhrigu lake trek, your Trek Leader will be monitoring two aspects thrice a day.

  •      Oxygen Level
  •      Pulse Rate

Your Blood Pressure levels will be checked once a day.

This will help us ensure that your body is acclimatising as required.

Every trekker will be given a Health Card at the beginning of the trek. The Health Card is issued to monitor the trekker’s daily health, wherein they will be entering details about their health everyday. It also contains details of what symptoms one should look out for and what action should be taken during emergencies. These Health Cards will be collected back at the end of the trek.

3. High Altitude Medical Kit

Your trek leader will be carrying a full-fledged high altitude medical kit. This will include basic medicines and specific medicines catering to altitude sickness – Diamox, Dexamethasone (tablets and injections) and Nifedipine. Your Trek Leader will also be carrying a portable oxygen cylinder throughout the trek. In addition to that, there are oxygen cylinders installed at all high altitude campsites for any emergency situations.

4. High Altitude Trek Equipment

To ensure safe trekking on snowy terrain, Indiahikes will provide you with micro-spikes to attach to your shoes. This will give you good traction on hard snow. To avoid snow from entering your shoes, Indiahikes will provide you with gaiters that you can put on over your shoes. You will have qualified technical guides with you, who will lead the way on difficult terrain.

All our sleeping bags and tents are custom-made for high altitude. If it is cold outside, it will be around 10 degrees warmer inside the tent. The sleeping bags can withstand temperatures up to -10 degree Celsius.

 

5. Being hydrated and well nourished on the trek

You need to drink a minimum of 4 litres of water every day during the trek to ensure that you’re well hydrated. De-hydration on a trek can make you lose energy very quickly and intensify the effects of AMS. Your trek leader will brief you about the amount of water that you need to carry with you at the start of each day as well as water sources on the trail.

We provide trekkers with nutritious meals to ensure that they are energized to complete the trail each day. Apart from this, snacks or packed lunch is provided wherever the trail before a meal break is likely to be long. Make sure that you do not skip any meal as this can lead to serious health emergencies on high altitudes.

With all these processes and equipment in place, you can be rest assured that you will have a safe trek with Indiahikes.

Nevertheless, you will need to be cautious and report the slightest of symptoms to your trek leader as soon as you feel them.

What you compulsorily need to know if you’re going on the Bhrigu Lake trek

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Acute Mountain Sickness:

At altitudes above 10,000 ft the chances of being hit by Acute Mountain Sickness cannot be ruled out. This risk can be avoided by going on a course of Diamox. Even while on Diamox, the risk of AMS still prevails. While AMS can be treated with rest and medicines for the most part, the symptoms must be recognised before it can go to advanced stages – High Altitude Pulmonary Edema (HAPE) and High Altitude Cerebral Edema (HACE).

HAPE and HACE are critical conditions that can be fatal within hours. And they can occur without AMS preceding them. So it’s doubly important to recognise any symptoms and nip them in the bud.

About Diamox:

Diamox is a tablet that is available off the counter. You can start your course one day before the trek. Take half a tablet once in the morning and once at night (after your meal). It reduces chances of AMS by 80%. There are almost no side effects of Diamox, except a tingly feeling at your finger tips. You might also feel the need to urinate more often, which is normal as Diamox makes you drink more water. You can learn more about AMS, its symptoms and treatment here.

Note: Diamox is a sulfa-based tablet. If you are allergic to sulfa-based drugs, don’t take the tablet. If you do not know whether you are allergic to sulfa-based drugs, take a Diamox around ten days before your trek and look out for any reactions, If there are none, you can safety take the tablet on the trek.

Take this specific precaution – Go on a preventive course of Diamox

We strongly advise you to go on a preventive course of Diamox. Diamox is a blood thinner and helps you acclimatise much faster and reduces the chance of AMS by around 80%. Take half a tablet twice a day from one day before your trek.

What to do if you have symptoms of AMS?

If you feel any symptoms of AMS on the trek, you must report to the Trek Leader immediately. Do not wait till the end of the day’s trek. Do not try to handle it yourself either. Our Trek Leaders are well-trained and experienced to handle any cases and they will be the decision makers in any such cases.

Watch the below video to understand the symptoms of Acute Mountain Sickness. In this video, Arjun Majumdar, the founder of Indiahikes will also tell you the protocol to follow when you see someone showing symptoms of AMS.

Exit on the Bhrigu Lake trek is easy as the closest road head is Gulaba, which can be reached in around 8 hours latest. Medical expenses, if required, at the medical centre are to be borne by the participant. Closest hospital is in Manali.

Why you should personally know about the risks and precautions of high altitude treks

If ever you find yourself alone at high altitude, either while trekking independently or with another organisation, there are some life -saving steps you can take. Firstly, you should be able to recognise symptoms of altitude sickness. So acquaint yourself with the symptoms.

Secondly, there might be instances when you have to administer medicines to yourself or to a fellow trekker. There are three life-saving medicines that we suggest you always carry on you – Diamox, Dexamethasone and Nifedipine.

If you are trekking with Indiahikes, do not administer these to anyone without consulting your Trek Leader. If you are trekking independently then you need to know when exactly to administer these medicines and in what dosage.

Also ensure that you are well hydrated throughout the trek and do not skip any meal.

You can watch the video below to learn about HAPE and HACE and how to tackle them. In the video, Sandhya UC, partner at Indiahikes, explains in detail about High Altitude Pulmonary and Cerebral Edema, what the symptoms are and how to tackle them.

Acute Mountain Sickness

If you’re of the opinion that fit people don’t get AMS, please get rid of that notion right away. AMS can affect anyone without paying heed to their fitness and prior experience at high altitude! Altitude sickness does not distinguish between a first timer and an experienced trekker.

For more detailed information about Acute Mountain Sickness, you can download and study the manual below.

ams-manual-indiahikes-2-pages

Click on the AMS Manual to open and download

Expert Opinion

Safety and preparation during a trek

Why Trekkers need to take Safety on Treks more Seriously

In the second article of his three-part series on safety, Arjun Majumdar writes about a worrying trend that is spreading in the Indian trekking community.

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Trek With Swathi

Trek with swathi

How to pack your backpack

If you’re off on a high altitude trek and you’re wondering how to stuff ALL the things you need for 7 days, then here’s a video that will help you out! You’ll thank yourself for watching it!

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Trek With Swathi

What is Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS)?

Every high-altitude trekker needs to be aware of Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS). Arjun Majumdar, who has witnessed hundreds of cases of AMS amongst trekkers resolves all doubts about it.

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Trek With Swathi

Trek with swathi

Can you trek during your periods?

If you’re trek dates and periods coincide, don’t worry! It’s alright to trek during your periods. In this episode, Swathi interviews Sandhya UC, a partner at Indiahikes. Sandhya gives you quick and effective tips to manage periods in the mountains.

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Trek With Swathi

Trek with swathi

How to choose the right trekking shoes

You’re off on a trek and don’t know what kind of shoes to buy? It’s not that hard. You can decide which shoe to buy in less than a minute after watching this video!

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Trek With Swathi

trek with swathi

How to keep warm on a high altitude trek

The secret to staying warm in freezing temperatures is the same principle that we follow in cold winters. Layering.
In this video Swathi explains what all you need to stay comfortably warm on your Himalayan trek.

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Trek With Swathi

Why alcohol is a big NO at high altitude

Many people like to drink alcohol at high altitude assuming it keeps them warm. But they cannot be more wrong. Alcohol is the worst thing at high altitude! In this video, Swathi explains the adverse effects of alcohol at high altitude.

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Trek With Swathi

Assess your BMI before choosing a Himalayan trek

High altitude trekking is not the same as vacationing in Manali or Ladakh. Your BMI plays the biggest role in making or breaking your trek. Here, Swathi tells you how to assess your BMI before choosing a trek.

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Bhrigu Lake Trail Map indiahikes
Bhrigu Lake Trail Map

How to get to the basecamp – Gulaba


Delhi → Manali → Gulaba

The Bhrigu Lake trek starts from a tourist destination called Gulaba. To get to Gulaba, you have to drive 24 km from Manali. We organise transport from Manali on Day 1 of the trek. The transport is organised at 2 pm from Rambagh Circle. So please ensure you are in Manali by 1 pm.

Manali is well connected to Delhi. Take an overnight bus from Delhi and you should reach Manali in 12 – 14 hours. Tickets can be booked online at www.redbus.in or www.hrtc.gov.in. Choose government buses such as HPTDC and HRTC as they usually run on schedule. 

Note: Since Delhi-Manali is a long journey, most private buses leave Delhi between 5 pm and 6 pm. The last govt. bus leaves at 8.30 pm from ISBT Kashmere Gate.

Getting back


Gulaba→ Manali → Delhi

The Bhrigu Lake trek ends at Gulaba. The drive back to Manali takes 30 minutes. Like the onward journey, buses leave from Manali for Delhi between 4 and 5 pm. Buses usually reach early in the morning. If you are travelling further from Delhi immediately, do keep enough buffer time in between. 

Here’s what trekkers have to say about trekking with Indiahikes

“The trek was mesmerizing and my most beautiful experience till now.  Our trek leader had the typical spirit of an adventurer. All in all, the trek was amazing!”- Ankit Jain, batch of June 2016

“Being my first trek, it was truly an exhilarating experience. I loved the uncertainty of it. There were so many moments where I had to pinch myself just to believe that I literally was in such a breathtaking place. Drinking water directly from the stream felt magical. And the local staff as well as our trek leader were amazing.  If I can think of any downside, it’s just that right after coming back from such an ethereal place, it is difficult to stop thinking about it. Kudos to the entire staff for their excellent work. I would specially like to mention Kamal Bhaiya and Pohlu Bhaiya who were incredibly kind and supportive.”-Sanskriti, batch of June 2016 

“I loved the trek. I can’t put it any simpler. When I first came in sight with my first snow bound peak (even though it was only along the horizon), my thrill knew no bounds. I enjoyed every day of the trek all the way from the muted meadows to the snowy slopes that lead to the lake. The trek leader was great and the guide, charismatic! And the food, was least expected to be this fantastic.”-Timothy Augustine, batch of June 2016 

SHORT ITINERARY

Day 1: Pick up from Manali bus stand at 2 pm. Drive from Manali to Gulaba and short trek to the campsite.
Day 2: Gulaba (8,530 ft) to Rola Kholi (12,566 ft); 3-4 hours, 7 km
Day 3: Rola Kholi (12,566 ft) to Bhrigu Base camp (12,500 ft) via Bhrigu Lake (14,009 ft); 5-6 hours, 10 km
Day 4: Bhrigu Base camp (12,500 ft) to Gulaba (8,530 ft); 6 hours, 10 km. Drive to Manali. You are expected to reach Manali by 3:30 pm.

Please note that stay on all days of the trek will be in tents (3 per tent).

bhrigu-lake

Click here to view the tra

What Other Trekkers Are Saying About Bhrigu Lake Trek

“The trek was better than what was described on the website. We were lucky to experience all in one trek -from ice cold to super sunny days to rains. The lake was really amazingly peaceful. It was my first trek and it surely fired me up to do more of treks. The trickiest part was walking on slippery ice as I have never walked on ice. It was a lot scarier for me to complete the final part but our guide and team leader helped us a lot in through the ‘ice-walk’.  All the arrangements were great and I am looking forward to another trek with you guys.

-Kunal Vora

“The trek was mesmerizing and my most beautiful experience till now.  Our trek leader had the typical spirit of an adventurer. All in all, the trek was amazing!”

Ankit Jain

“I loved the trek. I can’t put it any simpler. When I first came in sight with my first snow bound peak (even though it was only along the horizon), my thrill knew no bounds. I enjoyed every day of the trek all the way from the muted meadows to the snowy slopes that lead to the lake. The trek leader was great and the guide, charismatic! And the food, was least expected to be this fantastic.”

Timothy Augustine

Whom is this trek for?

Patches of snow on day 2 P.C. Hrishikesh

Do you love snow and are you strained for time? Then this trek is the perfect option for you. It gives you the chance to experience snow on just the second day. The base camp, Gulaba is only 24 km from Manali, and the duration of this trek is 3 days, making it the perfect trail near Manali. It is perfect for families too.

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