Chirbatiya Weekend Trek

A Short Trek Through Lovely Pine and Rhododendron Forests With Grand Mountain Views

In Collaboration With the Forest Department, Uttarakhand

Chirbatiya is the hub of a Nature Festival hosted by Uttarakhand Government. Dates for this festival are - March 12, 13 and 14. Plan to reach a day in advance (by March 11) if you wish to participate in this festival.
View Schedule
Difficulty
Difficulty
? Easy-Moderate treks have even trails and a gentle gradient. No more than 5-6 days long. They do not go to very high altitudes and have easy exits from most campsites.
Easy-Moderate
Duration
Duration
3 Days
Altitude
Maximum Altitude
8402 feet ft
Pickup point
Pickup point
Hotel Grand Legacy, Dehradun

Chirbatiya Weekend Trek starts either from Chirbatiya or Uroli village. The highlight of this trek is the campsites. They offer a grand panoramic view of the Greater Himalayas, of peaks like Mrigthuni, Trishul, Nanda Devi, Chang-Bang, Dronagiri, Neelkanth, Chaukhamba, Kedarnath. 

Interestingly, this trek also faces the east. This means the trek receives toasty sunlight for the major part of the day, making it pleasant for hiking even during Himalayan winters.

Even though this is a short trek, it has the charm of certain longer Himalayan treks. For example, a break-point you cross enroute the Patangnia meadows will remind you of Bekaltal from Brahmatal trek.

This makes Chirbatiya Weekend trek special. In a short span of time, it packs some good punches. To give you a perspective, they are listed as below:

1. 270-degree Mountain Views

Right from the basecamp, Chirbatiya, you start seeing arresting mountain views. It’s rare to have such a clear view of so many mountains right from the basecamp. And Chirbatiya Weekend trek is one of the few treks that offers this.

As the trek proceeds, and you reach the high point at Patangniya meadows you see great Himalayan Peaks starting from Mrigthuni, Trishul, Nanda Devi, Chang-Bang, Dronagiri, Neelkanth, Chaukhamba, Kedarnath to many more in between. 

View from Chirbatiya Indiahikes

2. Picturesque sunsets and sunrises

The Chirbatiya Weekend trek faces east. This orients it in a direction for some memorable sunrises and sunsets.

The trek also has ridges. In fact, basecamp Chirbatiya is situated on a pass. From here, you can see memorable sunrises as well as sunsets. Even on the trek, a short walk from the Patangniya meadows takes you to a ridge section from where you can witness some beautiful sunrises and sunsets. 

Chirbatiya trek Indiahikes

 

3. Charming forest of pines and rhododendrons

The starting point of this trek is Chirbatiya. Here, ‘Chir’ refers to pines and ‘batiya’ means a path. Literally translated, it means a path through the pine trees. And this trail is crowded with many trees. You notice it due to the sharp scent of pine even as you are driving down from Ghansali valley to Chirbatiya.

But pines are not the only trees you find here. You also have rhododendrons. Together, this combination of pines and rhododendrons make a charming forest to trek in.

4. Paradise for birders

Chirbatiya Weekend trek is a quaint one. Not many have been here. It’s secluded, tucked in a quiet setting in the Tehri district of Uttarakhand, away from the hustle-bustle.

As mentioned earlier, the trail also has great forest cover. This makes it an ideal place for birds. If you’re in this region during spring, watch out for the incessant chirping of birds. 

It is an absolute paradise for birders in spring.

Himalbatiya Trek Indiahikes

5. Perfect for spending a quiet weekend in nature

Chirbatiya Weekend Trek is a great option to trek in the quiet nature. Starting from the basecamp, Chirbatiya does not receive many travellers. It is quiet and peaceful here. So, if you’re looking for a time-out from the fast-paced city life, this is an ideal basecamp to spend time in before you start your trek. 

Go for a walk, sip a cup of tea, enjoy the sunset and breath fresh air of the Himalayas. Perfect place to get away from the hustle of the city.

While you can start the trek from either Chirbatiya or Uroli village, we recommend you do it from Chirbatiya for the following reasons.

How difficult is Chirbatiya Weekend trek

At Indiahikes, while rating a trek difficulty we consider a number of factors. These include, altitude gained every day, length of trek every day, highest altitude, nature of the terrain, weather etc. Base on this we rate a trek as easy or difficult or somewhere in between.

The Chirbatiya Weekend trek is perfect for beginners. If you want to start exploring high-altitude treks, this is a good place to start. 

The trek is easy-moderate. It mostly has level forest walks that can be enjoyed by people from all age groups. 

But like any high-altitude trek, this one too requires preparation in terms of fitness. There is one section on Chirbatiya Weekend trek that will test your endurance and stamina. You come across it while climbing to the Patangniya meadows. 

While trekking to the Patangniya meadows there’s a steep 45 minutes ascent. It leads you to one of the best mountain views on this trek. Training before the trek helps you enjoy this section. Otherwise, you may struggle to make it to one of the best viewpoints of the trek. 

 

 

Quick Itinerary

Dehradun to Chirbatiya Indiahikes

Day 1: Drive from Dehradun to Chirbatiya

Distance: 162 km | Duration: 6-7 hours
Altitude gain: 1221 ft to 7188 ft

Transport will be arranged from Grand Legacy Hotel, Dehradun at 6.30 am. Leave early from Dehradun to make it in time for a spectacular sunset at Chirbatiya.

Even though the route from Rishikesh looks shorter, we suggest you take the route from Dehradun that goes via Tehri. This route is picturesque with Tehri Dam being a major attraction on the route.

While driving down, watch out for the lovely forest cover that begins after you cross Ghansali. The entire section between Ghansali and Chirbatiya goes through pine forest. The sharp scent of pine hits you as soon as you start driving past the Ghansali valley.

Day 2: Trek from Chirbatiya to Patangnia meadows

Trek distance: 7 km | Duration: 4.5 hours
Altitude gain: 7188 ft to 8402 ft

Day 3: Trek from Patangnia meadows to Khalawa Tok. Drive to Chirbatiya. Back to Dehradun.

Trek distance: 3.5 km | Duration: 2 hours
Distance from Khalawa Tok to Chirbatiya: 5 km | Duration: 20 minutes
Altitude loss: 8402 ft to 7188 ft (Patangnia meadows) to 7451 ft 

As you have a trek on the last day, prepare to reach Dehradun a little late, by around 7 pm. It is advisable to keep any travel bookings for late at night to cue in any unforeseen delay.

Day 1: Drive from Dehradun to Chirbatiya

Distance: | Duration: 6-7 hours
Altitude gain: 1221 ft to 7188 ft

Transport will be arranged from Grand Legacy Hotel, Dehradun at 6.30 am. (Rs 10,000 for SUV and Rs 13,500 for Tempo Traveller, to be shared by trekkers travelling in the vehicle)

Leave early from Dehradun to make it in time for a spectacular sunset at Chirbatiya.

Even though the route from Rishikesh looks shorter, we suggest you take the route from Dehradun that goes via Tehri. This route is picturesque with Tehri Dam being a major attraction on the route.

While driving down, watch out for the lovely forest cover that begins after you cross Ghansali. The entire section between Ghansali and Chirbatiya goes through pine forest. The sharp scent of pine hits you as soon as you start driving past the Ghansali valley.

Himalbatiya trek Indiahikes

It will take you around 6-7 hours to reach Chirbatiya. Plan your travel in a way that you reach Chirbatiya by early evening. As Chirbatiya is situated on a pass, it is a great spot for witnessing beautiful sunsets and sunrises.

Day 2: Trek from Chirbatiya to Patangnia Meadows

Trek distance: 7 km | Duration: 4-5 hours
Altitude gain: 7188 ft to 8402 ft

The trek starts from Chirbatiya market, from the Ganesha entrance. It is a prominent landmark, very hard to miss. You are in the Tehri district of Uttarakhand. 

Himalbatiya Trek Indiahikes

Immediately after you begin, the trails starts ascending. Within 10 minutes, you have ascended to a level where you can see the Chirbatiya village, arresting views of the Ghansali valley and forest behind you. 

On the first day, watch out for the forest walk. The trail meanders through a mix of pines, deodars and rhododendrons. Walking through this forest, with sun rays filtering through the leaves is a mesmerising experience. 

On a cloudy day, expect the setting to be mystical. 

Himalbatiya Trek Indiahikes

In about 40 mins you reach the first chhaani on your left. Local villagers do farming here. The chhaani hut is a great location to enjoy the sunset from. 

There’s also a water source to fill your bottles nearby. You have to descend 50 ft for it. 

From the chhaani hut, the trail bends to the right. Keep going on the trail to reach the first clearing. Hold your breath for you are about to get your first view of Himalayan ranges from the Chirbatiya Weekend trek now. This view will stay with you for long. 

The clearing also offers a view of the entire trail. It’s in the shape of a horseshoe. Far away, you can see the landscape dotted with villages. Many people from Chirbatiya have built their house in this village. 

After crossing the clearing, the trail then enters the forest. The ascent is gradual, so you really enjoy walking in the forest here. Take in the sharp scent of pine and observe your surroundings as you trek towards your campsite. 

You will come across a couple of more clearings and two water sources en route. Keep an eye on your GPX file for these. Also, keep some snacks handy.  

As you trek further, you come across a couple of diversions. They lead you to the nearest village – Khalawa Tok.

| Note: On the next day, you will use this route to reach the road head.

This route can also be used as an emergency exit to reach the nearest road head in an hour

The final stretch, after you pass the diversions, test your endurance. But this is a short stretch, lasting just for 15 minutes. It’s a steep ascend

Himalbatiya trek Indiahikes

The ascent leads you to a quiet lake surrounded by trees. This is the campsite. You may use the tight, level ground by the lake as your camping site. For those who have done the Brahmatal trek, this campsite may remind you of Bekaltal

As you start, look for the trail beginning from behind your campsite. It’s immediate ascend for 45 minutes. This is the longest ascent on the Chirbatiya Weekend trek. Your fitness needs to be in place for this section. 

After 45 minutes, the trail suddenly opens up to an expansive clearing. This is the Patangnia clearing. Don’t stop here. Keep walking till you reach the first temple. The view from here will blow your mind. 

Right in front of you is a majestic wall of the mountains. You get a 270 degree view from here. The lesser Himalayas are in the foreground, with valleys filled with haze. Rising from behind them are the Greater Himalayas. The view is so mesmerizing that you can spend hours at this place. 

Spot two temples here. Each has a story behind it. Ask your guide about it. Just to give you a conversation starter – one story is about a festival and the other is dedicated to a local village boy. 

Himalbatiya Trek Indiahikes

From the temples, if you walk to the ridge on your left, you see Ghansali valley. 

Day 3: Trek from Patangnia Meadows to Khalawa Tok. Drive to Chirbatiya, then to Dehradun

Trek distance: 3.5 km | Duration: 2 hours
Distance from Khalawa Tok to Chirbatiya: 5 km | Duration: 20 minutes
Altitude gain: 8402 ft to 7188 ft 

Wake up early today to watch the spectacular sunrise from the ridge overlooking the Ghansali valley.

Start early and retrace your route till the diversion for Khalawa Tok village. After around 30-40 minutes of taking the diversion, you reach a road head. Use the road to drive to Chirbatiya which is 5 km from here.

As you have a trek on the last day, prepare to reach Dehradun a little late, by around 7 pm. It is advisable to keep any travel bookings for late at night to cue in any unforeseen delay.

1. Here’s a quick view on how to plan your travel

Day 1: Drive from Dehradun to Chirbatiya

Distance: 162 km | Duration: 6-7 hours
Altitude gain: 1221 ft to 7188 ft

Transport will be arranged from Grand Legacy Hotel, Dehradun at 6.30 am. Leave early from Dehradun to make it in time for a spectacular sunset at Chirbatiya.

Even though the route from Rishikesh looks shorter, we suggest you take the route from Dehradun that goes via Tehri. This route is picturesque with Tehri Dam being a major attraction on the route.

While driving down, watch out for the lovely forest cover that begins after you cross Ghansali. The entire section between Ghansali and Chirbatiya goes through pine forest. The sharp scent of pine hits you as soon as you start driving past the Ghansali valley.

Day 2: Trek from Chirbatiya to Patangnia meadows

Trek distance: 7 km | Duration: 4.5 hours
Altitude gain: 7188 ft to 8402 ft

Day 3: Trek from Patangnia meadows to Khalawa Tok. Drive to Chirbatiya. Back to Dehradun.

Trek distance: 3.5 km | Duration: 2 hours
Distance from Khalawa Tok to Chirbatiya: 5 km | Duration: 20 minutes
Altitude loss: 8402 ft to 7188 ft (Patangnia meadows) to 7451 ft 

2. Planning your onward flight/train booking

If you are travelling from Bengaluru, Chennai, Pune, Mumbai or any other city, book your air tickets for Day Zero, which is the day before Day 1 on the itinerary. 

There are two options.

Option 1: Fly directly to Dehradun

We recommend this. It gives you an added rest day at Dehradun. Most metros are directly connected to Dehradun. However, if the cost of the flight ticket to Dehradun is too high, book to Delhi and connect to Dehradun by train/bus.

Tip: Train is the best option to get to Dehradun. Bus journeys are often delayed by a few hours.  

Taxis are available from the airport (plenty). Prepaid taxis are available (look for the pre-paid taxi counter just out of the conveyor belt at the arrivals). You can also flag down a taxi (bargain a bit) with taxis outside the airport. Airport taxis are exorbitant. They usually charge between Rs 800 to Rs 1,000 to Dehradun

Usually, most passengers take taxis from the airport. Try to hook up with co-passengers on the flight for your taxi ride to Dehradun. 

Pro Tip: If you want to save real money try to catch an auto just outside the airport terminal complex. They usually come there to drop passengers off. Autos are not allowed to enter the airport complex. They charge approximately Rs 300 to Dehradun. 

If autos are not available, walk for further 1.5 km to get to the Rishikesh Dehradun highway. From the highway you can flag down regular town buses or shared autos (shared autos are called Vikrams). Bus fare is about Rs 30 to Dehradun. Shared autos charge about Rs 20. 

Option 2: Flying to Delhi.

Flying to Delhi may be a lot cheaper than getting to Dehradun. Make sure to book a flight that reaches Delhi by 8.00 pm. You must arrive in Delhi on Day Zero and not on Day 1.

Note: If you notice the difference in air ticket prices between Delhi and Dehradun less than Rs 1000 then book directly to Dehradun. The rest and shorter travel time is worth the difference.  

Next, book yourself in the Nanda Devi Express to Dehradun (Train No: 12401). It is a fully AC train that leaves at 23.35 hrs from Hazrat Nizamuddin and gets to Dehradun at 5.40 am in the morning. 

Note: Earlier the Nanda Devi express would depart from New Delhi railway station. From 26 Aug 2019, it leaves from Hazrat Nizamuddin railway station. The train now comes from Kota. So expect about 15 to 30 mins delay in arrival. The train number has changed too from 12206 to 12401.

At Dehradun railway station, wait for Indiahikes pick up at 6.30 am. Contact your driver by 6.00 am. The number of your transport coordinator will be shared with you a week prior to your departure. 

Caution: Do not book on any other train except the Nanda Devi Express. The other option, Mussoorie express, is notorious for its delay. Your pickup vehicle may leave without you. If you do not get tickets on the Nanda Devi Express, take a bus from Delhi to Haridwar, but do not book on the Mussoorie express.

Pro Tip: Take the afternoon Jan Shatabdi express from New Delhi railway station (leaves at 15.20 pm) to arrive at Dehradun by 21:10 in the night. Stay overnight at Dehradun. Take the Indiahikes pickup the next morning directly from Dehradun railway station.   

Bus

If in case you do not get a train ticket, there are regular Volvo AC buses from Delhi’s ISBT Kashmiri Gate to Dehradun. You also get Non-AC buses. Buses are frequent and not usually crowded. You can get a bus almost every half hour. Buses take 7-8 hours to get to Dehradun from Delhi. AC bus tickets cost about Rs 700. 

3. Planning your return flight/train booking

Booking your return tickets require some thought. First, keep some buffer time in mind before booking tickets. If you are scheduled to reach Dehradun around 8 pm on Day 3, then book your train/bus/flight tickets for Day 4. 

How to get to Delhi on time for an early morning flight

If your flight is early, say between 8.00 and 9.00 am, then there are two options. 

Train: Take the Nanda Devi Express from Dehradun (12402) that leaves at 22:40 hrs to get to Hazrat Nizamuddin Railway Station at 04:50 in the morning. From Hazrat Nizamuddin you get airport buses from outside the station as well as taxis. Metro train is somewhat inconvenient from Hazrat Nizamuddin. 

Note: Earlier Nanda Devi express would arrive at New Delhi railway station. From 26 August 2019, it has been extended up to Kota. It no longer goes to New Delhi railway station. Instead it goes to Hazrat Nizamuddin railway station. The train number has changed from 12206 to 12402.    

Bus: The other option is to take a bus from Dehradun. It is about 6½ – 7 hrs journey to Delhi. So if you take a bus that leaves around 9.00 pm, then expect to reach Delhi at around 04.00 am (ISBT Kashmiri Gate). A bus that leaves at 22:00 pm will reach Delhi around 05.00 am. AC Volvo buses are the fastest, so opt for them. Non AC buses can take up to 7-8 hrs for the journey. 

From Kashmiri Gate ISBT you get Airport buses or taxis.

Note: Metro trains in Delhi do not start before 5.00 am.  

If you are taking a flight out of Dehradun

If you are taking a flight out of Dehradun then book yourself late at night on Day 3. As you have a trek on the last day, prepare to reach Dehradun a little late, by around 7 pm. It is advisable to keep any travel bookings for late at night to cue in any unforeseen delay.

4. Planning your hotel/stay

In Dehradun, look for hotels around the railway station. There are quite a few options available online and it is not difficult to find last minute hotel booking.

Hotel options at Dehradun

Hotel Drona, which is a government property owned by the GMVN is decent. It is an old, but a large and spacious property. It is about 1.5 kms from Dehradun railway station. Rooms start at Rs 750. 

Latest Update: Hotel Drona has been converted into a Covid Centre

Phone: +91-135-2746847.
Book online http://gmvnl.in/newgmvn/online_reservation/ Location: https://goo.gl/maps/sjWSkGhe5LfAN8wDA

MyRoom252 is a new backpackers facility in Dehradun. Modern, colourful and clean. Bunk beds start at Rs 300. Rooms are available too. It is not too far from the Dehradun Railway station. Shared autos (which are called Vikrams) can get you there. For online booking: http://www.myroom252.com/.
Phone: 086308 81083.
Location: https://goo.gl/maps/p5xkbMyUF4X5VHwx9

Nomads House is another new backpackers hostel in Dehradun. The atmosphere is good. The place neat and clean. Indiahikes trek leaders love Nomads House. It is about 10 mins from the Dehradun railway station. Bunk beds start at Rs 400, rooms start at Rs 800. Shared autos are easily available to get to Nomads House.
Phone: 9760596464
Location: https://g.page/NomadsHouse?share

 

How to get fit for this trek

The Chirbatiya Weekend trek is classified as an easy-moderate trek but like any other high altitude trek, it comes as with its challenges. The ascent to Patangnia clearing can be challenging, especially if you are trekking in snow (December, March and early April). You need to keep your body in fairly good condition before you begin the trek.

Cardiovascular endurance
This trek requires a good amount of cardiovascular endurance. You can begin by jogging every day. Start jogging at a slow pace and then keep increasing your pace day by day. In order to be prepared for high altitude trek, you should have a combination of distance and speed targets.

Here’s a fitness routine that works:

  • –>Target completing 5 km in 45 minutes when you begin.
  • –>Gradually increase your pace by running 4 times a week and bring it down to 5 km in less than 40 mins.
  • –>If you are 45 years old and above and are comfortable with long distance walking than jogging, then before you go on the trek, you should be able to walk at least 10 km at a stretch. Target completing this in 90 minutes.
    If jogging is fine for you, your target should be completing 5 km in 50 minutes initially, and 5 km in less than 47 minutes before you go on the trek.
  • –>If you are somebody who prefers cycling over running, your target must be to cover 20 km in 60 minutes.

Strength – Target 3 sets of squats with 15 in each set
This is another area you should work on. Carrying your backpack and ascending will require core body strength and also strong legs. For this, add squats to your routine. Start with 3 sets of squats, with 8 squats in each set and work towards reaching your target in 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. These exercises will help you to be in good shape before the trek.

Here’s a guide to help you get fit for the trek.

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.

Things to get for the Chirbatiya Weekend Trek

Chirbatiya Weekend Trek is a high altitude trek. The trekking gear you need to carry for this trek is different from regular treks. So pay careful attention to this entire section.

First, The Essentials. You cannot do the trek without these.

1. Trekking Shoes:

Chirbatiya Weekend Trek requires trekking shoes that are sturdy, have good grip, have ankle support and can handle snow. Here is a quick video on how to choose your trekking shoes.  

| Buying Tip: The Trek series and MH series are good options by Decathlon. They are tried and tested. There really isn’t any necessity to buy the higher priced models. Here is a list of other budget shoes that trekkers are using.

| Rental: We have the Trek series and the MH series by Decathlon available on rent from the Indiahikes store. They are already broken into and in good condition. Rental shoes are not dirty or unhygienic. This is how they are kept clean.

2. Backpack:

For a trek like Chirbatiya Weekend Trek, you need a 40-50 litre backpack. Make sure your backpack has good hip support, shoulder support and quick access pockets. Here is a guide on how to choose a backpack

| Buying Tip: Wildcraft, Decathlon and Adventure Worx usually make good backpacks. While Wildcraft has more expensive ones, the other two brands have budget-friendly backpacks to choose from.

| Rental: The 48 litre backpack by Adventure Worx is available on rent from the Indiahikes store. They are custom-made for our Himalayan treks. Rent them if you don’t have a backpack.

3. Clothes:

Wearing layers is the mantra in the mountains. Layers give you maximum protection from all elements. And when the weather changes in the mountains (as it happens every few hours), you take take off or put on layers as required. 

Base layer:

3 T-shirts:

Wear one T-shirt and carry two. Carry full sleeve dry-fit T-shirts (preferably collared). These prevent your arms and neck from getting sunburnt. In the rarified air on the trek, especially at high altitudes, UV rays can burn you in no time.
Dry-fit T-shirts quickly dry your sweat, they are easy to wash and in case of a rainy day, they dry quicker. Round neck T-shirts are ok, but collared ones are better.


| Buying tip: You can get dry-fit T-shirts from Decathlon. Also, stores like Reliance Trends, Max have dry-fit T-shirts. They don’t usually cost much.

| Cotton or Synthetic? As Indians, we love cotton. Down in the plains when the heat is a blistering 40°C it makes sense to wear cotton. But it takes a long time to dry when it gets wet. In the mountains, where it is cooler, synthetic is what you wear. They wick sweat rapidly and keep you dry. (But they do tend to smell quickly, so carry a roll-on deodorant with you.)

| Pro Tip: If you are extra susceptible to cold, you could get a set of thermal inners. In our experience, wearing two T-shirts over another works as a better thermal. And they save you weight and space, since you’re already carrying them. 

3 insulation layers:

The highest altitude you reach on this trek is 15,000 ft. At these altitudes it can get freezing cold even in the middle of summer. You will need at least 3 insulation layers for this trek.
You will need 2 light fleece layers, 1 full-sleeve light sweater. Do not get your grandma stitched sweaters, which can be very heavy. You need sweaters and fleece jackets that can fold into compact rolls.

1 Outer layer:

A padded jacket serves the purpose here. You don’t really need a water resistant material. But you need an outer padded jacket that keeps the wind and cold out. Ensure your padded jacket has a hood as well.

| Do you need a down/feather jacket? Not really. A regular padded/shell jacket will do. This video here will help you to learn more about the difference.

Note: Down/feather jackets are really not available these days. Many jackets masquerade as down/feather jackets. They are essentially fine polyester-filled jackets. They mimic the function of a down jacket but are usually expensive.

| Rental: Padded jackets made by Fort Collins are available on rent at the Indiahikes store. They are custom made for Indiahikes and trekkers find them terrific, even in winter.

Two trek pants:

Twopairs of trek pants should suffice for this trek. Wear one pair and carry two  just in case it rains. Trek pants with zippered cut offs at the thighs are very suitable for treks. Also, choose quick-dry pants over cotton. They dry up soon in case of small stream crossings / rain.

| Buying tip: Go for pants with zippered pockets. They come in handy to keep your phone, handkerchief or pocket snacks.

| Track pants or trek pants? Stretchable track pants make a good backup and can double up as your thermal bottoms. But track pants are not trek pants — so don’t use them as your main outerwear. Keep them only as a backup.

Mandatory Accessories, without these too you won’t be able to do the trek. 

These accessories are mandatory. Don’t go to Chirbatiya Weekend Trek without them. Trekkers generally put off purchasing / borrowing the accessories for the last minute. We suggest the opposite. Start gathering these accessories first. 

1. Sunglasses:

Sunglasses are to prevent snow blindness. On a trek like Chirbatiya Weekend Trek, you will find snow all over the trail during winter. Expect to walk on long stretches of snow. A small overexposure to direct sunlight on snow can lead to snow blindness (about a half hour’s exposure). That’s because fallen snow is like thousands of mirrors that reflect direct UV rays. So you need sunglasses with UV protection.

| Tip: Try getting sunglasses that wrap around instead of those that have openings on the side. Even peripheral UV ray exposure is not a good idea.

Wear sunglasses if the trekking day is bright and sunny (on open sections, meadows). On a snowy section you must absolutely never take off your sunglasses until the section has been fully crossed.

| If you wear spectacles: If you wear spectacles, you can get oversized sunglasses that you wear over your regular glasses (available at Decathlon). If that is cumbersome, photochromic lenses work equally well. Here’s a quick guide on managing sunglasses with spectacles.

| Contact lens users: If you use contact lenses, you can use them on the trek too. The lens solution will not freeze. You will also not face any problems in changing your lens in your tent. Just carry enough cleaning solution with you to clean your fingers well. Wear your sunglasses over your contact lens.   

 2. Suncap:

A sun cap is mandatory. Trekking without a sun cap can lead to headaches, sun strokes, quick dehydration and a sharp drop in trekking performance.

| Tip: In the mountains, the general rule is to keep your head covered at all times. During the day a sun cap protects you from the harsh rays of the sun (it is doubly stronger with naked UV rays). A sun cap keeps your body temperature in balance. In the evening/early morning, the reverse is true. Your head loses your body heat quickly. A woolen cap prevents heat from dissipating from your head.

| Pro Tip: Sun caps with flaps are a blessing for trekkers. They cut out almost all UV leaks. They prevent sun burns in every possible way. They are a lot more effective than sunscreen lotion. A wide brimmed sports hat also helps to prevent sunburn in a big way. 

  3. Synthetic hand gloves:

On a trek like Chirbatiya Weekend Trek you are going to be handling snow quite a bit during winters. You’ll need gloves to grip something or to steady yourself in snow. You also want the gloves to keep you warm. Get synthetic hand gloves that have waterproofing on the outside and a padded lining on the inside. If you find the combination difficult to get (not likely), wear a tight fitting fleece hand glove inside a synthetic hand glove. Hand gloves are mandatory on this trek.   

4. Woollen cap or Balaclava:

Ensure these cover your ears. In the cold mountains, you lose maximum heat from your head, not from your hands, feet or the rest of your body. Which is why you need to keep your head protected, especially when the sun is down. Early mornings, late evenings, a cold trekking day are when you must use your woollen cap.

Your ears are sensitive too, so a woollen head cap that covers your ears is absolutely essential. A balaclava is a modern version of the woolen cap. It covers your ears, neck and parts of your face as well. Do not get a woollen cap that only covers your head. 

5. Socks (3 pairs):

Apart from two sports socks, take a pair of woollen socks. Sports socks give you cushioning plus warmth. Again the mantra is to wear synthetic socks or at least a synthetic blend. Cotton socks soak in water and sweat. They are very hard to dry. As for woollen socks, they help you to keep warm and snug in the night. If you cannot get woolen socks, wearing two sports socks serves the purpose as well. 

6. Headlamp:

Trekkers are often confused about whether they need to get a headlamp or a handheld torch. You need to get a headlamp because it leaves your hands free to do other activities. On the Chirbatiya Weekend Trek you’ll need your hands free to wash dishes, pitch tents and hold your trek poles.

| Buying tip: Ensure your headlamp covers a wider area and is not too focused as a single beam. On a trek, your headlamp must help you see around you as much as ahead of you. 

7. Trekking pole (a pair):

Trekking poles give you stability and balance. They reduce your energy consumption by almost 40%. On the Chirbatiya Weekend Trek there are gradual ascents and descents and some steep sections too. A pair of trekking poles will make the difference between a comfortable and a strenuous trek. In India we tend to use a single trekking pole. However, two trekking poles give you greater stability and balance. They also increase your walking pace. 

| Rental: Imported side-locking trekking poles are available on rent on the Indiahikes store.  

8. Rainwear:

On a trek, the weather can change quickly. A bright sunny day can turn into a downpour in a matter of minutes. Carry a poncho or a rain jacket to tackle this. A poncho is a big rain cover with openings for your arms and your head. It is extremely effective because it covers both you and your backpack. It is extremely light and weighs next to nothing.

Rain jackets are more streamlined and less cumbersome but weigh more. Rain pants are really not required. Dry fit trek pants dry quickly even if soaking wet.

| Rental: High grade ponchos are available on rent on the Indiahikes store.

9. Rain cover for your backpack:

Backpacks are your life. You carry all your dry clothes, your warm gear in your backpack. It is important that your backpack stays dry at all times. Modern backpacks usually come with built in rain-covers. If your back pack does not have a rain-cover, ensure you get a rain cover by either (a) buying a rain cover (b) or cutting a large plastic sheet to the size of your backpack. You can roll the plastic sheet around your backpack and keep it in place with a string or elastic. 

| Pro tip: It’s good practice to compartmentalise your clothes, accessories and other things in plastic covers inside your backpack. That way, even if it rains and your backpack gets wet, your things are water-proof inside the backpack.

10. Daypack (20-30 ltrs, optional):

Some trekkers opt to offload their bags to a porter on the Chirbatiya Weekend Trek. While we do not encourage this practice, in case you opt for offloading, then carrying a daypack is mandatory. In your daypack you carry essentials like water bottles, rainwear, emergency medicines, headlamp, some snacks and a warm layer. Your main backpack that carries most of your equipment is accessible only at the campsites. 

A day pack is a smaller backpack that is usually of 20-30 ltr capacity. Laptop bags are not day packs. Do not get them.

Other mandatory requirement

1. A toilet kit:

Keep your toilet kit light. Carry just the basics — toothbrush, toothpaste, small soap, toilet tissue roll, a small moisturiser, lip balm, and a roll-on deodorant. You will not be able to have a bath on the trek, so don’t overload on soaps and shampoos.

| Pro tip: Carry miniature-sized items. You will not need more than that. If you’re travelling in a group, share one toothpaste for all.

Avoid getting large toilet rolls. The smallest size roll is more than enough for a trek like Chirbatiya Weekend Trek

| For women: If you are likely to have your periods on your trek date, don’t worry about it. You can use your pads, tampons or menstrual cups on the trek. There will be toilet tents where you can get changed. Make sure you carry ziplock bags to bring back your menstrual waste. Don’t leave behind any waste in the mountains. Watch this video to learn how to dispose your sanitary waste.

2. Cutlery:

Carry a lunch box, a mug and a spoon. Your lunch box must be leak proof. You are expected to wash your own cutlery. Trekkers often expect Indiahikes to wash their cutlery. When you allow Indiahikes to wash your cutlery, your cutlery becomes part of a mass washing system. You immediately invite germs, bacteria to settle on your cutlery. Incidence of stomach disorders rises exponentially.

| Pro tip: Carry stainless steel cutlery. Avoid fancy high grade plastic cutlery. Stainless steel cutlery is infinitely easier to wash in cold water. Grease is easier to remove and hygiene is at the highest. Watch this video on why steel cutlery is better than plastic.

3. Two 1 litre bottles or a 2 litre hydration pack:

Chirbatiya Weekend Trek has a few long walking days. You need to carry two one litre water bottles to keep yourself hydrated over the distance. If you are used to a hydration pack, then that is ok too. If one among the two bottles is a lightweight thermos, then that helps you to store warm water on a really cold day or for late evenings and early mornings.

| Rental: You could rent lightweight thermos flasks from the Indiahikes store

4. Plastic covers:

Carry 3-4 old plastic covers to keep your used clothes. You could use them even for wet clothes. Re-use old plastic bags for this and do not buy new ones.

Useful videos to help you with your gear:

Personal medical kit

Carry these medicines with you, easily accessible at all times. Do not take any medicine unless you have consulted your trek leader

  1. Diamox (1 Strip): Be on a course of a half tablet Diamox starting from Delhi every 12 hours (125 mg). Carry on the medication until you descend down to Barua. Being on a preventive course of Diamox greatly reduces the chances of Acute Mountain Sickness on the Chirbatiya Weekend Trek.    
  2. Dolo 650 (5 tablets): This is a paracetamol. It helps to tackle fever, mild pain
  3. Avomine (4 tablets): Carry this especially if you are prone to motion sickness. Pop one half hour before the start of your road journey.
  4. Combiflam (5 tablets): Take a combiflam if you get a sudden twist of the leg or a muscle strain. It is a pain reliever. It also contains paracetamol. 
  5. Digene (4 tablets): Take it if you feel the food that you’ve taken is undigested. Alert your trek leader immediately. It could be a sign of AMS. 
  6. ORS (6 packs): Consume a pack of ORS water at least once a day, usually mid day when you are in the middle of your trek. It replenishes essential salts lost while trekking.  Tip: It also makes cold water easier to drink.
  7. Knee Brace (optional): Carry this if you are prone to knee injury or have known issues of knee pain.

Our trek leaders carry a high altitude medical kit with them which also consist of Life Saving Drugs. If there is an emergency our trek leaders know how to tackle it. Meanwhile, contact your trek leader before consuming any of these medicines listed here.

| Pro tip: We find that these medicines by trekkers are rarely used. But you cannot do away with them. At the end of the trek please donate unused medicines to your trek leader. Some of these medicines get distributed to villages on the trek and some are added to the Indiahikes medical kit.   

Mandatory Documents to carry

These are documents required for legal purposes by Indiahikes and the forest department. Without any of these, you will not be allowed to trek.

  1. Original and photocopy of government photo identity card. Anything such as a driver’s license, Aadhar card, passport will do. This is required by the forest department for your identification.  
  2. Disclaimer certificate. This is a legal requirement. Download the PDF, read carefully and sign it. This must be handed over to your Trek Leader during registration at the base camp – Download PDF
  3. Medical certificate. There are two sections in this. The first part must be filled by a practising doctor. The second part must be filled by you. Without the medical certificate the forest department will not issue permissions for your trek. It is also a requirement by Indiahikes – Download PDF

| Pro tip: Keep important documents in a clear plastic cover and slide them into the inner pocket at the back of your backpack. This keeps them from getting wet.  

The Indiahikes Special Covid Cancellation Policy 

We understand the pain of cancelling a trek. As trekkers, we always look forward to treks, and after months of training and planning, if we have to cancel our trek, there’s no greater disappointment than that. 

This is why we have one of the most trekker-friendly cancellation policies.

This policy is effective for registrations starting January 5, 2021.

| Face no cancellation charges any time before the trek date

– Cancellation upto 7 days before the start date of the trek — Get a complete cash refund (minus 4% transaction fee). The money is refunded to the same bank account, credit or debit card from where payment was made. 

– Cancellation during the last 6 days before the start date of the trek, and not counting the day of the trek — Full refund with 100% of the trek fee in the form of an Indiahikes Trek Voucher. Valid for 1 year from date of issue. Can be used on any Indiahikes trek. 

– Cancellation on the start day of the trek, or no show on the start day of the trek — Unfortunately, no refund. 

Important note: The Trek Insurance amount is not refundable. 

| In the rare event that we cancel a trek, this is the policy we follow:

We almost never cancel our treks. But in case we cancel a trek because of natural calamities (snowstorms, thunderstorms, floods, landslides, earthquakes) or unexpected political unrest, curfews, local riots, or government orders, Indiahikes will issue a voucher for the full amount of your trek fee (minus the trek insurance). You can redeem the Trek Voucher on any of our treks over the next one year.

Important note: The Trek Insurance amount is not refundable. 

| The Indiahikes “Repeat My Trek” Policy (trekkers love this!)

There are some thoughts and ideologies that we hold close to our hearts.

1. As trekkers, there are times when we have to let go of a trek midway. Sometimes we fall ill, or get hit by AMS or at times simply fatigue pulls us down. At other times bad weather plays spoilsport, or the trail is blocked. It can happen that your Trek Leader sends you down due to a safety or health issue.

At Indiahikes we feel terrible when such an event happens.

Should such a situation occur that you have to drop out from this trek, we want you to know that we feel as bad as you do. You can always come back another time and finish your adventure. For this you do not have to pay Indiahikes any money.

2. On the other hand, there are times when you fall in love with a trek. So much so that you want to do it again, perhaps see it in another season. If you ever desire to do a trek again, please do so. You don’t have to pay Indiahikes any money for repeating this trek. Just inform your Experience Coordinator who will guide you through a special internal process. 

Our only request: Just register for your trek in advance – you know how it is with our groups – they get booked in advance.

Note: The Indiahikes “Repeat My Trek” policy does not apply to our international treks.

If you cancel any rental gear from our store:

  • Cancellation of rental gear 7 days before the start date of the trek — Get a full refund minus 4% transaction charges.
  • Cancellation of rental gear less than 7 days before the start date of the trek — Get a voucher for the whole amount. This voucher is applicable on all our future treks.

If you cancel the offloading of your backpack:  

The offloading fee will be refunded to your account with a 4% transaction charge. 

If you choose to cancel your backpack offloading AFTER reaching the base camp, you will get a voucher of the offloading fee. 

| How to cancel your trek: 

In case, you wish to cancel your trek, follow these steps. 

  1. Login to your Indiahikes Trek Dashboard using this link
  2. Find your upcoming trek on your home page. 
  3. Click on “Cancel Trek” 
  4. Mention why you’re cancelling your trek on the form that appears.
  5. Choose either a voucher or a refund (where applicable). 
  6. Click on “Cancel Booking” 

How long does the refund process take?

After you have cancelled your trek, if you have opted for a refund, the refund amount will land in the same account that you have made the payment from. It will take 4-5 working days.

If you have chosen a trek voucher, it will land in your inbox within an hour. You will also be able to see it on your Trek Dashboard.

What is a Trek Voucher?

Trek Vouchers are credit amounts added to your Indiahikes account. You can redeem these on any of your future treks with Indiahikes. Every Trek Voucher has a validity of one year.

Important note: Indiahikes Trek Vouchers are non-refundable, not transferable to others or extendable. 

How to use an Indiahikes Trek Voucher?

If you have received an Indiahikes Trek Voucher, you will automatically see it when you are making a payment for your next trek. 

Once you click on the voucher and apply it, the system will deduct the voucher amount from your payable amount. 

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to get in touch with your Experience Coordinator. 

Your trek fee includes –

  1. Accommodation – Stay on Day 1and Day 2. You will camp on the trek on Day 2.
  2. Meals – All meals from Dinner at Chirbatiya on Day 1 to breakfast on Day 3 are included. We provide simple, nutritious vegetarian food on all days of the trek.
  3. Camping charges – All trekking permits and forest camping charges are included.
  4. Trekking equipment – High-quality tents, sleeping bags, ice axes, roped, microspikes, gaiters, etc. as required.
  5. Safety equipment – First aid, medical kit, oxygen cylinders, stretchers, etc. will be available at all campsites to deal with emergencies.

Your trek fee does not include –

  1. Transport to and from the base camp – We will arrange shared taxis for trekkers to pick you up from Dehradun and drop you back there from Chirbatiya. Return Journey will cost Rs.10,000 per 5-6 seater vehicle and Rs.13,500 per 5-6 Tempo Traveller. You will have to share this cost with the other trekkers
  2. Food during transit to and from the base camp
  3. Backpack offloading charges – Rs 750 for the full trek + 5% GST. The backpack cannot weigh more than 9 kgs. Suitcases/strolleys/duffel bags will not be allowed. Please note that charges will vary for last minute offloading in case you decide to offload your bag after reaching Raithal.
  4. Anything apart from inclusions

Available dates

Face no cancellation charges any time before the trek date

At Indiahikes we follow a 31-Point Safety Protocol to ensure that you remain safe even as you trek during the Covid times.

Having said that, we are also aware that travel rules are dynamic and lockdowns are not always predictable.

To address this, we have a very trekker-friendly Cancellation Policy. This cancellation policy allows you to cancel or reschedule your trek till the last day without losing any money.

Read the Detailed Cancellation Policy Here

We will open up dates shortly. Click here to see other similar treks that might have dates.

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3 thoughts on “Chirbatiya Weekend Trek

  1. To promote #ecotourism in my local region, there is unexplored trek to get the most fantastic view of Kumaon mountains. – Buddha Pinnath
    Please Indiahikes, add this beautiful trek to your DIY treks. This helps our local vendors near this trekking spots along with our trekkers.
    Please let me know for more information
    about this trek and i am very happy to help to document this trek with you.

  2. Am really impfessed with the explorations
    Of the Indiahimes and amazing while the Forest authorities shun trekkers and tourists,they invite the Indiahikes to explore routes.
    The hike to Chirbatiya,as the detailed description,analysis and pix would indicate would suit all.The 45 mts ascent could be managed even by Budhas like me to reach the point to have a panaromic view of some of the major Himalayan peaks.
    Deeply appreciate the professionalism of the Indiahikes and more by the lositive attitude to share info.