Over the past month, there has been quite some confusion about trekking in Uttarakhand. Trekkers have a lot of questions in mind.
Are treks running?
Will they get cancelled?
Have the routes changed?
Well, we have good news!
Most trekking trails in Uttarakhand have opened up for trekking again!
This includes Kedarkantha, Har Ki Dun, Dayara Bugyal, Phulara Ridge, Gaumukh Tapovan, Kedartal, Brahmatal and Nag Tibba.
In this post, I hope to clear the air about trekking in Uttarakhand. I’ll answer key questions that trekkers have been asking us and resolve doubts.
Watch a video of our founder, Arjun Majumdar, clarifying details about the situation in Uttarakhand.
1. Are treks running in Uttarakhand? What exactly is the issue?
To answer quickly, yes, treks are running in Uttarakhand.
But what exactly is the issue?
On August 29th, the High Court of Uttarakhand passed an order to ban camping in the alpine meadows of Uttarakhand.
After the order was passed, the forest department clamped down on trekking activities on most Uttarakhand trails, because most of these trails involve camping in alpine meadows.
But over the past week, the forest department has been giving permissions to run treks with some changes — changes in routes, or in the campsite locations.
2. Which treks are running for sure?
Here’s a list of treks that are running for sure. Click on their names to read details about them.
Har Ki Dun
We have obtained written permission for all the above treks..
3. Have trekkers been going on these treks over the past week?
Yes, trekkers have gone to Gaumukh-Tapovan, Kedartal, Rupin Pass and Har Ki Dun. A team of trekkers is leaving to Phulara Ridge today and to Kedarkantha tomorrow.
The trekkers to Har Ki Dun could even make it to Maninda Tal because they were super fit and had good weather!
So everything is running smooth.
We have taken permission for each trekker to be on the trail.
So there’s nothing to worry about.
4. Have the routes or campsite locations changed for any of the treks?
The routes for almost all the treks are the same.
Only the campsite locations vary for a few of them.
I’m putting down the itinerary for each trek below. These may have small changes, but they are more or less the routes you’ll follow:
Dehradun → Sankri → Juda Ka Talab → KK Base → KK Summit → Har Gaon → Sankri → Dehradun
Har Ki Dun:
Dehradun → Sankri → Drive to Taluka and trek to Gangaad → Osla → Simatra → Simatra to HKD and back → Chilurgad → Trek to Taluka and drive to Sankri → Dehradun
Dehradun → Raithal → Gui → Barnala → Dayara Top and back to Barnala → Barsu → Dehradun
Dehradun → Dharali →Chirbasa(via Gangotri) → Bhojbasa → Acclimatisation walk to Gaumukh and back to Bhojbasa → Dharali (via Gangotri) → Dehradun
The routes to Brahmatal, Rupin Pass, Phulara Ridge, Kedartal and Nag Tibba remain the same.
5. Are you missing out on any highlights of these treks?
I understand that many of us were looking to camp in the meadows of Uttarakhand.
Nevertheless, even without that, these treks are beautiful and you aren’t missing out on much.
Even though you don’t get to camp in the meadows, you do visit them spend enough time there. We have made sure that the new itineraries accommodate that time in the meadows.
So be sure that you aren’t missing out on the meadows!
6. Which treks are not running or doubtful?
The Roopkund trek is completely out of the picture. Without being able to camp in the meadows, there will be a huge altitude gain from the previous to the next campsite. We will not be able to do the trek safely, without risking altitude sickness.
So we will not be running the Roopkund trek.
We have opened up fresh dates to Buran Ghati, which makes for a terrific alternative to Roopkund. We have dates in October. So you could go for it.
Kuari Pass is another trek that is on hold. The forest department is trying to decide on a route that they can allow trekkers to go on. So we’ll wait a few more days to hear from them.
7. Are any of the running treks likely to get cancelled?
The forest department, local operators, trekking organisations are all working together to make treks run.
It’s a collective effort to keep trekking alive in Uttarakhand.
So the treks where permissions have come in are not going to get cancelled. You can go ahead and register for these treks.
If you have any questions, just drop in a comment. One of us from Indiahikes will get back to you!