Deoriatal Chandrashila Trek

The Best Trek For Summit Views
Trek Fee : 9,150 + 5% GST See Inclusions

December dates full? There are other great snow treks in Jan & Feb

Did you know peak winter sets in only in Jan & Feb in India? It forms a thick blanket of snow, and the holiday crowd drops after December. Chandrashila becomes inaccessible, but other treks are open.
Click here to see Jan & Feb treks
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
6 Days
Altitude
Maximum Altitude
12,083 ft
Pickup point
Pickup point
Rishikesh
Required Fitness
Base Camp
Sari
Age
Minimum Age
8
Best time to visit
Best time to visit
Mar-May, Sept-Dec

The Complete Guide to Deoriatal Chandrashila Peak Trek

An in-depth account by the Founder Of Indiahikes, Arjun Majumdar, who has been on this trek thrice! He loves it. And in this account, he will reveal why, by taking you through every detail that you must know about this trek.


Set in the Kedarnath Wildlife Sanctuary in Uttarakhand, the Deoriatal Chandrashila trek is a treat for wildlife lovers. And it is also a great summit climb (12,083 ft)  for those who are beginning to start trekking in the Himalayas.

You see, summit climbs are rewarding, and trudge up a mountain for hours during the wee hours. You reach its highest point like the rays of the sun lighten the sky. Everything is below you — the clouds, the hills, the tiny specks of civilization. On a Himalayan trek, you usually see mountain ranges in the distance.

This is where Deoriatal Chandrashila is special. It is not a section of Himalayan ranges that you see. You see all the major summits of Western and Eastern Uttarakhand from the summit. By all, we mean all.

Deoriatal-Chandrashila-Indiahikes
The 7,000 metre peaks, as seen from the Chandrashila Peak

Use these pointers to navigate through this extensive trek guide:


What I Like And Don’t Like About The Trek

Arjun Majumdar
Founder & CEO
I can’t think of another trek in our country which can match the Deoriatal Chandrashila for flowers, birds and summit views (all three at the same time). Frankly, when I first thought of doing the Deoriatal Chandrashila Trek, I didn’t have much expectation from it.

Much before we started Indiahikes, I had read a couple of trek journals about the trek. I knew it was a pilgrim trail from Chopta until the Tungnath temple, only a 4 km walk.

I had read people would stay overnight at the Tungnath temple premises. In the early morning, they would go to Chandrashila to catch the sunrise.

In my mind Chandrashila was a two kilometer further trek from Tungnath. There were some good views to offer but that was it. And yes, I had heard a lot about the beautiful meadows around Chopta. I didn’t know how this qualified for a trek.

I think my innocent pre-Indiahikes mind didn’t fathom what was written in these journals. Because none of them painted the correct picture of the trek. And none of them talked about the combination of two treks, the Deoriatal and the Chandrashila, and how put together, it creates one of the best treks in our country.

I curse myself and these journals roundly now. I wish I had done this trek earlier, much earlier.

Chopta Chandrashila Winter Photo Gallery Indiahikes

Here’s what I like about the trek

A trail blazing with rhododendrons

I timed the trek for spring the first time I did the Deoriatal Chandrashila trek. The moment I stepped on the trek, I knew I was onto something special. The Deoriatal Chandrashila here was the Goechala trek of the west. Pink, red and scarlet Rhododendrons bloomed in vivid colours all along the trek.

I was a bit stunned at the density of the rhododendrons on the trek.

Near Chopta, at some spots an entire section of the mountain side was red. We ran other great treks in the Himalayas. But none of them came close to the amount of rhodos that I saw on this trek. It was a feast!

Pink Rhododendrons in full bloom along the Chandrashila trail. Picture by Yogesh Shinde

Birdlife on the trek

I still have an old video that I was recording at Deoriatal. We have never published that video. Because in that video you cannot hear me at all. My voice is drowned by the chirping of birds. We tried changing locations for that video, but we gave up soon. The birds were everywhere!

Later, after we talked a lot about the birds on this trek, many of our birder trekkers went on this trek. They have only one thing to say about this trek. This is the trek to see birds.

Other treks have birds. But none of them will come close to what you see on the Deoriatal Chandrashila trek. There are at least 30 – 40 varieties to see on this trek.

I am not a birder, but I have done this trek thrice — in all seasons. Every time, I have seen Monals very close to the trail. For me Monals, the state bird of Uttarakhand, are prettier than the peacock and perhaps even more colourful.

Getting a chance to see Monals would be a good reason for me to do the trek again. I have rarely seen Monals on other treks.

 

I remember the moment. I had just stepped on the edges of Deoriatal.

And there it was right in front, as if rising from the edges of the lake the entire massif of Mt Chaukhamba. I looked around. Everyone’s eyes were fixed on the same sight. No one could take their eyes off Mt Chaukhamba.

You can ask me to do a lot of treks. But the sight of Mt Chaukhamba from the shores of Deoriatal is something I am not willing to exchange for any other views.

A picture of the Chaukhamba Massif taken from the Deoriatal lake. Picture by Milind Tambe

The climb to Chandrashila summit from Tungnath is anything but a walk.

I am not saying it is difficult, but it is a nice thrill to top the summit. It took me a moment to grapple with the sight at the summit.

Right in front of me, at a touching distance, were not one, not two, but all the major summits of our Greater Himalayas.

I ticked them off. Jaunli, Mt Jogin, Mt Thalaysagar, Kedarnath and the Kedar Dome, Sumeru, Bhagirathi I , Mandani Parbat, of course Mt Chaukhamba I, II, III and IV. These were 7,000 meter summits!

When I turned my head to the other side, there she was India’s highest mountain — Mt Nanda Devi right in front. Then, to almost add a cherry on top was our eternal favourite Mt Trishul along with Mt Nanda Ghunti. To the left were Gauri Parbat, Hathi Parbat, Dunagiri.

For a long time I stood transfixed at the spot.

On other treks I had seen great mountain views. But never so many of them, so close and from such a great vantage point.

Arjun himself stands at the Chandrashila summit, transfixed at the mountain views.

What I don’t like about the trek

The trek had better campsites earlier.

When we could camp at Rohini Bugyal and the Deoriatal lake premises. But now, because of government regulations, camping at all our old and great campsites is not allowed.

That’s something I miss about this trek. On the other hand, the new campsite at Syalmi is not bad.

The Baniya Kund campsite on the Deoriatal-Chandrashila trek. Picture by Yashpal

I have mixed feelings about the crowd on the trail.

I’ll be honest, I was expecting the crowd of pilgrims moving towards Tungnath to be a bother. But strangely, it felt nice to be the trekker in this motley group. I would often be asked about the distance and how long it would take to get to Tungnath. Those small conversations made that section of the trek a whole lot of fun.

While I really don’t like crowds on a trail, here, somehow I was ok with it.

Chopta Tungnath Indiahikes
Tungnath Temple, the highest Shiva Temple in the world.

Best Time To Do Deoriatal Chandrashila Peak Trek


Even though Chopta Chandrashila is a high altitude trek, it can be done for almost 6 months in the year. And there are three clear seasons to do this trek starting with spring between March and April. After which the trek opens in autumn and goes until December.

Post December in the peak winter months, the Chopta region receives heavy snowfall. Many times the road to Chopta is cut off due to snow. The roads there are also highly prone to verglas, making driving dangerous.

We strongly recommend against planning to visit Chopta Chandrashila in January and February.


Deoriatal-Chandrashila trek in Winter

Another great time for a snow experience on the Deoriatal Chandrashila trek is the month of December. This is the onset of winter, when it just starts snowing. The snow isn’t too thick to block the trail. It isn’t so thin that it disappears within a few days either.

It’s a wonderful time to camp in snow and trek in snow. Perfect for snowball fights and an experience of snowfall if you’re lucky.

A snowy forest trail in winter on the Deoriatal-Chandrashila trek. Picture by Chandrasekar

Deoriatal-Chandrashila trek in Spring

The biggest highlight of the Spring season are the blooming Rhododendrons. The Deoriatal Chandrashila trek gets decked up under a canopy of flowers. The red Rhododendrons bloom on the trees on day one.

The second and third day is a riot of pink Rhododendrons. Deoriatal Chandrashila trek in Spring is the best trek in our country to experience Rhododendrons.

In March-April you can expect to see snow on the trek, which can start at the Syalmi campsite. The climb to Tungnath and Chandrashila will largely be on snow until the first week of April. The second half of April sees the snow melting away.

A blooming Rhododendron tree on the way from Chopta to Tungnath. The contrast of the white snow and the pink rhododendron is simply stunning. Picture by Yogesh Shinde

Deoriatal-Chandrashila trek in Summer

Summers bring out a green colour palette on this trek, one that you might not witness in any other season.

The forests and meadows look bright and sunny during May-June. Early in June, slopes may receive light summer showers and the flora turns lush.

The trek is at its easiest, and is a great getaway from the summer heat of the plains. It also makes for perfect time to introduce children to the Himalayas during the summer vacations.

The Deoriatal camp is at its greenest best in summer. Picture by Neha Kulkarni

Deoriatal-Chandrashila trek in Autumn

The next best time to do the trek would be in the post-monsoon months of September, October and November. Post monsoon, the sky is washed clean of all the haze.

And it’s a perfect time for the Deoriatal Chandrashila trek which is known for  the stunning views of the Garhwal Himalayas. It is in autumn that you get the clearest views of these mountains.

In autumn, expect the clearest views and the best weather. Picture by Apabrita Ayan Das

At A Glance

March-April May-June Sept-Nov December
This is when you’ll see snow on the trek, but you’ll also see blossoming Himalayan rhododendrons. A bright and sunny season which brings out the bright green colour palette on the trail. Makes for a great Himalayan getaway with children during summer vacations. Post monsoon, the sky is washed clean of all the haze. And it’s a perfect time for the Deoriatal Chandrashila trek which is known for stunning views of the Garhwal Himalayas. The snow isn’t too thick to block the trail. It isn’t so thin that it disappears within a few days either. It’s a wonderful time to camp in snow and trek in snow. Perfect for snowball fights and an experience of snowfall if you’re lucky.


Weather And Temperature On Deoriatal Chandrashila Peak Trek

First, understand there are three clear seasons — spring, autumn and winter — to do this trek. And the weather in each season differs.

So what kind of weather can you expect in these seasons?

Spring (Mid March — Mid April): The winter is receding but hasn’t totally left yet. The snow is still in patches on the ground. On the upper slopes, especially above 10,000 feet, it is still snow bound.

Expect cold nights at your higher camps. Temperature during the night can drop to around zero but generally will hover around 1-5 degrees.

The day temperatures are usually very pleasant on the trek at an average of 15 – 20 degrees. If the sun goes behind the clouds and there is a bout of rain, then the temperature can fall to around 10 degrees.


Autumn (Mid Sep — Mid October): Autumn is generally like Spring, but a few degrees colder. Nights can be nippy at slightly below zero at the highest camp.

As you move towards late November, it is perceptibly colder. Higher camps are 2-3 degrees below zero. Though, at the lower camps the temperature will hang slightly above zero.

While trekking, in autumn, day temperatures are pleasant at around 13 – 18 degrees, but any rain or slight drizzle brings down temperature rapidly to around 8 – 12 degrees. You need to keep a pullover handy with you always.


Winter (December — January): December brings in the snow. Along with it comes the winter chill. Even in lower camps the air is frosty with a sharp bite.

Expect sub zero temperatures even at your base camps in the evening in winter.

During the day when the sun is out, it is quite comfortable to trek. The temperature is a balmy 8 — 12 degrees. If you are on snow, then the snow reflects, which makes it quite warm sometimes!

At the higher camp, temperatures could fall below minus 7 or 8 degrees in the night. As long as you are inside your tent and in your layers, it is absolutely fine.

On your early morning summit climb, expect to start in temperatures well below zero. The day will get progressively warmer as the sun touches the ground, even though you may be on snow. Be prepared to shed off your layers as you climb.


How To Stay Safe On The Deoriatal Chandrashila Peak Trek

The trickiest section on the trek is from Baniyakund to Tungnath-Chandrashila, especially when you are trekking in snow.

How Difficult Is Deoriatal-Chandrashila Peak Trek?


We rate the Deoriatal-Chandrashila trek as ‘easy-moderate’. This means there are fewer difficult sections but you still would need to follow a fitness routine to train for a high-altitude Himalayan trek.

You will trek a total distance of 27 km over three days. Some days will be longer than others. Click here to know how to get fit for the Deoriatal Chandrashila trek.

On Day 3, you will trek approximately 10 km and on the summit day — the most challenging day of the trek — you will trek 8 km as you climb from Baniyakund (8,562 ft) to Chandrashila peak (12,083 ft).

During this climb, you will encounter a risky section traversing from Tungnath to Chandrashila, where there is a lot of snow on the trail, particularly in the snowy months of December, March and April.

This must be done only with the help of technical safety equipment and a competent technical safety team.

Your summit day from Baniyakund to Chandrashila is steep and gets steeper from the Tungnath temple complex. The entire stretch of 4.5 km is on the snow and there are sections with hard snow that is likely frozen overnight. You will descend down the same route.

And there are certain pointers you need to keep in mind to stay safe on the Deoriatal-Chandrashila trek:

1. Hard snow can be slippery, so wear your microspikes before you step on snow. A small slip can result in injuries like a ligament tear, a sprained ankle or even a fracture. 

2. Always put your foot on footholds made by earlier trekkers. Look out for deep footholds. Do not try to make new paths of your own.  

3. Check for sections with feeble snow that may require ropes.

| Note: If you are trekking with Indiahikes, your Trek Leader will tell you when to wear the microspikes. Indiahikes technical team will lead in this section to make the footholds required for trekkers to step on.


Apart from the tricky section from Baniyakund to Tungnath-Chandrashila, as a high altitude trekker, you must also know about Acute Mountain Sickness, closest exit points and the nearest hospital to the Deoriatal-Chandrashila trek.

• Acute Mountain Sickness

At altitudes above 10,000 ft the chances of being hit by Acute Mountain Sickness are real. Altitude sickness does not distinguish between a first timer and an experienced trekker. Even experienced trekkers can get affected.

Fitness helps in making your trek easier. But do not forget that even a fit person climbing too high too soon runs equal risk of developing AMS.

Some symptoms to watch out for: (a) Persistent headache (b) Feeling fatigue or weak (c) Feel nauseous or vomit (d) Feeling dizzy or lightheaded, often while sitting up or standing suddenly (e) You don’t feel like eating, you have a loss of appetite (f) You don’t sleep very well at night.

The itinerary of Deoriatal-Chandrashila trek allows you to acclimate well. And yet, you must stay alert for any signs of AMS.

Watch the video below to gain clear understanding of Acute Mountain Sickness:


• Exit Point in case of an Emergency

From the first camp – Deoriatal, retrace your steps back to Sari to exit. If you have moved ahead to Syalmi, come back to Sari or Tali village. But if you have moved towards Baniyakund, that itself is a roadhead. So, exit from Baniyakund.


• Closest Hospital

If a medical emergency occurs before or after the summit climb, then Ukhimath is where you would need to go to get to a hospital. Ukhimath is almost an hour’s drive from Baniyakund.

If you have registered for an Indiahikes trek, read the safety and emergency protocols we follow for an High Altitude Trek


How To Reach Deoriatal Chandrashila Trek From Rishikesh

The Deoriatal-Chandrashila trek, is an extension of the popular one day Chopta Chandrashila trek.

The Deoriatal Chandrashila trek begins at a small village called Sari which is 12 kms away from Ukhimath town in Rudraprayag district.

Sari lies about 195 kms away from Rishikesh and the road drive takes about 8 – 9 hours.

Watch this video for a detailed guide on how to reach Deoriatal Chandrashila trek:


Travelling with Indiahikes?Click here for more information

And if you are travelling on your own, your journey will be broken in three segments: 

  1. Rishikesh to Rudraprayag via Devprayag and Srinagar (5 hours)
  2. Rudraprayag to Ukhimath (3 hours)
  3. Ukhimath to Sari (30 minutes)

Note: If you are at Haridwar, take a bus to Rishikesh as quickly as you can. A bus generally leaves every 15 mins from Haridwar to Rishikesh.

From Rishikesh, take the first available bus to Rudraprayag. Buses leave at 6.00 am and 8.00 am. Generally all buses headed in the Badrinath direction pass by Rudraprayag. If you do not get a bus at the government bus stand, try the private bus stand, which is right next to it.

Rudraprayag is about 5 hours by bus from Rishikesh. On the way, the bus passes Devprayag and Srinagar (the Uttarakhand Srinagar, not the Kashmir one).

At Rudraprayag, from the main market buses leave for Ukhimath every two hours. The last bus is at 2.00 pm. You also get shared taxis from the main market, but after 2 pm vehicles are scarce.

It takes about 3 hours to get to Ukhimath. Ukhimath is 15 kms prior to Sari. So it is almost there. From Ukhimath you get the last bus to Sari at 6.00 pm. 

| Tip: While this bus hopping may sound cumbersome, we do it regularly at Indiahikes. They are a fun and a good way to know the real Uttarakhand. You also get to meet very interesting local people. So while no one wants to miss a pick up, don’t be too disheartened if it happens. You may just experience one of your best travel moments!

Route-Map-Rishikesh-Sari-Indiahikes


What To Pack For Deoriatal-Chandrashila Peak Trek

Before you start shopping and packing for the high-altitude Chopta Chandrashila trek, watch this video to get a clear idea about what you need to take along.

Complete Video Playlist: How To Pack For Deoriatal Chandrashila Trek

Mandatory Documents to carry On Deoriatal Chandrashila Trek

Carry an Original and photocopy of government photo identity card. Anything such as a driver’s license, Aadhar card, a passport will do.

You will need to submit your identification to the forest department. Without these, you will not be allowed to trek.

| Tip: Keep important documents in a clear plastic cover and slide them into the inner pocket at the back of your backpack to prevent them from getting wet.

If you have registered with Indiahikes, you also need to carry the Disclaimer Certificate and the Medical Certificate.

For an exhaustive list of things to carry, click here.


Connectivity On Deoriatal-Chandrashila Peak Trek

Last ATM Electricity Service Providers Network Hotspots
You will find it at Rudraprayag/Srinagar Market. If needed, withdraw emergency cash from here. But do not bank upon the last ATM, they too run out of cash. Withdraw cash before you begin your road journey to Sari. Available at base camp Sari and at campsite: Baniya Kund. Airtel (Call & internet), Idea (Call & internet) Sari (All connections available), Baniya Kund (Only Airtel & idea), Chopta (Airtel & idea but sketchy).


Frequently Asked Questions About Deoriatal-Chandrashila Peak Trek

Trekkers often ask us these questions about the Deoriatal-Chandrashila trek:

These questions have been answered by Swathi Chatrapathy, the Chief Editor at Indiahikes, who has been on the Deoriatal-Chandrashila trek.

❖ How can I reach Chandrashila peak?

The Chandrashila Peak is located just above Chopta at a height of 12,083 ft. Chopta is a hill station within the Kedarnath Reserve National Park. You’ll find the location of the Chandrashila peak here.

The Tungnath Temple, one of the famous Panch Kedar temples is also located on the climb from Chopta to Chandrashila. In fact, the Chandrashila Peak is just around 500 ft above the Tungnath Temple.

The best way to reach Chandrashila Peak is to drive towards Chopta, which is the closest road head to the Peak. Chopta is easily accessible from Haridwar, if you take the route from Rishikesh – Devprayag – Srinagar – Rudraprayag – Chopta. From Chopta, climbing to the Chandrashila peak takes just 3-4 hours.

You could also access the Chandrashila Peak from within the forest trails from Deoriatal, Baniya Kund and then to Chopta. This makes the trek longer and more scenic, as it takes you through few of the best forests of Uttarakhand. This is a 4 day itinerary, and we would highly recommend it.

Take a look at the recommended Chandrashila trek itinerary here.

Haridwar to Chandrashila-Google Maps-Indiahikes


❖ How long is Chandrashila trek?

The Chandrashila trek duration depends on the route you choose to take. If you approach it from Sari, which is a more scenic route, with the Deoriatal lake, dense forest trails and beautiful campsites, the duration of the Chandrashila trek is 4 days.

If you approach the trek from Chopta as your starting point, you can do the Chandrashila trek in just a single day and return to Chopta. There is a well-paved trail from Chopta all the way to the Tungnath Temple. Above the temple, the trail gets slightly raw, but is easily navigable.

| Note: There will be snow on the trails from December until the end of April.

Recommended trek route for Deoriatal Chandrashila TrekReccomended trek route for Deoriatal Chandrashila Trek


❖ How difficult is Chandrashila trek?

The Deoriatal Chandrashila trek is an easy-moderate one. It does not have too many steep climbs (except the summit push to Chandrashila). It does not have many long days.

Compared to all our Himalayan treks, this is perhaps the easiest one. It’s a good trek for beginners, families and children.

Having said that, it is still a trek in the Himalayas with difficulties in terrain, temperatures and weather. You must train for at least a month before going on the Deoriatal Chandrashila trek.

What is the best time to do the Deoriatal Chandrashila trek?

The Deoriatal Chandrashila trek is a great trek all year round. But the best time to do the trek is hands-down, the months of March and April. This is when you’ll still see snow on the trek, but you’ll also see blossoming Himalayan rhododendrons.

The next best time to do the trek would be in the post-monsoon months of September, October and November. The Deoriatal Chandrashila trek is known for stunning views of the Garhwal Himalayas, and after monsoon, when the sky is squeaky clean, devoid of any mist / clouds, you get the clearest views of these big mountains.

Another great time for a snow experience on the Deoriatal Chandrashila trek is the month of December. This is the onset of winter, when it just starts snowing. The snow isn’t too thick to block the trail. It isn’t so thin that it disappears within a few days either.

It’s a wonderful time to camp in snow and trek in snow. Perfect for snowball fights and an experience of snowfall if you’re lucky.

❖ Is there snow in Chandrashila?

There is snow on the Chandrashila trek from December to the end of April. The first winter snow falls by mid-December, and the trail usually remains accessible till the end of December.

Between January and February, which are peak winter months, the trails become difficult to access because of very high snow. We wouldn’t suggest the Chandrashila trek in these months.

In the beginning of March, when the snow starts melting slightly, it is one of the best times to do the trek. The best time to do the Deoriatal-Chandrashila trek would be the months of March and April when there is still a lot of snow, lush greenery and flowering rhododendron forests.

Deoriatal Chandrashila Trek


❖ Is Chopta safe?

Chopta is safe for trekkers and tourists. It is quite trekker-friendly, with guests houses and home stays. Since it is in a remote location, expect basic facilities here.

Having said that, trekkers wonder about the safety of Chopta because of the presence of wild animals. Chopta is situated within the Kedarnath Reserve National Park. There have been sightings of foxes and jackals in the past. But they do not usually come in when there is a lot of tourist activity.

At Indiahikes, we have been trekking from Chopta to Chandrashila since 2015 and have not seen any danger to trekkers. Since the road ends at Chopta, it’s quite populated and does not have too many wild animals.

A short itinerary of Deoriatal Chandrashila trek

Day 1: Reach Sari; 7-8 hours drive from Live Free Hostel, Rishikesh. Transport will be organized from Rishikesh at 6:30 am. Cab costs approximately Rs.5,500 per vehicle (shared among 5-6 trekkers)
Day 2: Sari (6,601 ft) to Deoriatal (7,841 ft);  2 hours, 3 km
Day 3: Deoriatal (7,841 ft) to Syalmi(7,710 ft) via Rohini Bugyal; 10 km, 6-7 hours
Day 4: Syalmi (7,710 ft) to Baniya Kund (8,562 ft); 6 km, 4 hours
Day 5: Baniya Kund (8,562 ft) to Tungnath and Chandrashila (12,083 ft) and back to Baniya Kund; 5-6 hours, 8 km
Day 6: Drive from Baniya Kund to Rishikesh. You will reach Rishikesh between 6.00 pm and 7.00 pm. Cab costs will be approximately Rs 6,000 per vehicle on the way back as the drive from Chopta increases the distance by another 20 kms.

Please note that you will be staying at a guest house in Sari and Baniya Kund

It is mandatory for trekkers to carry a copy of their photo id for entry at forest check posts on the trek.

Route Map for Deoriatal Chandrashila

 

Route for Deoriatal Chandrashila trek

Click here to download the KML file

Long Itinerary for the Deoriatal Chandrashila peak trek is as follows:

Day 1: Reach Sari

Sari, the base camp of the Deoriatal-Chandrashila trek, is an 8-hour drive from Rishikesh. The journey is picturesque, as you pass through Devaprayag, the confluence of rivers Alakananda and Bhagirathi to form river Ganga. The entire journey traverses the mountainside, with the river flowing below you. A quick tip: Pick the window seat on the right to enjoy the views! Sari is a small village with around 100 houses. If you reach Sari when the sun is still out, go down to the village and walk around. The paddy fields are so prettily laid out that they almost beckon to you. There is a small school amidst the fields. This school was built in 1947 and is the only school at Sari. The views around the village are gorgeous. This is also where you’ll get your first glimpse of the summit of Chandrashila!

  • Altitude: 6,601 ft (2012 m)
  • Time taken: 7-8 hours drive from Rishikesh. Transport from Rishikesh at 6.30 AM.
Devprayag confluence of Alkananda and Bhagirathi
Devprayag, the confluence of Bhagirati and Alaknanda. Picture by: Vishwas Krishnamurthy

Day 2: Sari to Deoriatal

  • Altitude: 6,601 ft (2012 m) to 7,841 ft (2,390 m)
  • Time taken: 2 hours, 3.5 km
  • Trek gradient: Easy. The day starts from the village with climbging a few stairs, followed by a gradual climb on a well-defined rocky trail. It becomes steeper after the first 20 minutes. A short walk on even terrain after an hour of climbing takes you to the campsite.
  • Water sources: None. Carry around 1 litre of water from Sari.
  • Green Trail Hotspot: You will find a lot of litter around Deoriatal. Keep your Ecobag ready.

The adventure starts at Sari. There is a sign-board indicating the trek route to Deoriatal in the heart of the small market in Sari, next to Hira and Murali Singh Negi Tourist House. The signboard says Devariya Tal, which is an alternative name for the lake.

It’s called so because it’s believed that devis (Goddesses) once came to the lake to take a dip. Alternatively, one can also start the trek from Ukhimath by taking another trekking route over the mountain for an 8 km steep incline trek to Sari. However, if you are short of time, this can be avoided. You can instead proceed to Sari via road.

The picturesque village of Sari. Picture by Samitha Vivek

A well-defined rocky trail is laid here. This trail begins with a gradual climb up the mountain. After approximately 15 minutes, you will come across village houses and an old local temple. Take in the pretty view of vast farmlands from here.

Ten minutes into the hike, the trail starts to become steeper. The forest has been cleared here, so you will get a good view all around. At the valley facing end, you can see the summit of Chandrashila and below it, the holy Tungnath temple. You may need binoculars to spot the temple.

The trail is well-defined all the way to Deoriatal. Ensure that you take the trail towards the left.

From here, you will need to follow the trail that winds up the mountain ridge. After a steady uphill trek for about 20-30 minutes, you will reach the first view-point. The Forest Department has constructed a hawa ghar for the travellers here. This spot is ideally located to relax and feast your eyes with a grand view of the mountains and the valley.

Deoriatal in snow - Indiahikes
The Deoriatal Lake surrounded by snow.

From here, take the trail that goes by a beautiful rhododendron and maple forest. After a steady hike of ten minutes, you will reach the second viewpoint.

Now, at 7,434 feet, Sari is no longer visible. With only a kilometre left, you will find yourself at the backside of the mountain and you will get a view of the Ukhimath side of the valley, though only for a while. You are now nearing your destination.

Another 20 minutes later, you reach a dhaba. Deoriatal is just two minutes away from here.

After a very short downhill trek, your surroundings open up to a grand view of Deoriatal, with Mt. Chaukhambha massifs looming in the background.

A clear night at the Deoriatal campsite. PC: Parimala Dawara

You have almost the entire day to yourself. That’s great because this is a picturesque campsite, a treat for the shutterbugs. You can go around the campsite and explore the trails around. The forests around here are lovely. You’ll be able to see and hear several rare Himalayan birds.

| Photo point: There’s a watchtower close to the lake that gives you grand views of the surrounding mountains.

Camp beside Deoriatal for the night. The beauty of the view generally intensifies in the morning, when the clouds have cleared to offer unreal views of the hills.

Day 3: Deoriatal to Syalmi via Rohini Bugyal

  • Altitude: 7,841 ft (2,390 m) to 7,710 ft (2,350 m)
  • Time taken: 6-7 hours, 10 km
  • Trek gradient: Moderate. Initial 15 minutes of gradual ascent followed by 45 minutes of steep descent, easing off after an hour of ascent to reach Rohini Bugyal. After 10 minutes of graduate ascent, comes the steep descent for 90 minutes to Siyalmi campsite.
  • Water sources: Carry 2 liters of water from Deoriatal. No water sources along the way

Walk along the left side of the lake towards the Forest Guest Lodge. Pass by a watchtower and proceed from behind the Forest Lodge from your right. A lovely forest trail awaits you. Full of rhododendron and maple trees, the trail is a picturesque one. Every now and then, the Kedar Dome and Chaukhamba peaks peek at you through the trees on your left.

The forest section is an absolute visual treat with treetops sprinkled with snow. In early March, rhododendrons are in full bloom. Picture by Yogesh Shinde

After 15 minutes of forest walk from the guest house, look for a small clearing as you exit the forest. In front of you, the Chandrashila peak is visible. Below, towards your right, you can see Sari village again. Observe the open expanse and a view of the forested ridge. This is the logical route of the forest ridge trek to the base of Chandrashila Peak.

Take the ascending trail ahead of you as you get much better views from both sides of the valley. Towards your left, you can see the mountain ridge, from where a trail to Madhmaheshwar and Nandikund trek passes.

| Photo Point: After 15 minutes of climbing the ridge, look out for the highest point of the ridge nearest to you. This hill-top has a flag post. This is Jhandi Dhar (N 30°31.580, E 079 °08.515).

In the month of March and April, the trail is blazing with red and pink flowers of rhododendron. After 15 minutes of following the laid trail, you reach the top of Jhandi Dhar. The ridge has a small flat ground with unobstructed views from all sides. The forest continues to thicken throughout the trek. If you thought the forests until now were dense, you haven’t seen the start of it.

From here, proceed and take the trail that descends rapidly and connects with the forest ridge below. The descent is sharp, but pleasant. After 10-15 minutes, the trail takes an eventful turn as you enter the forest ridge from the left. The flora of the region is stupendous.

Every now and then, you might come across small shrines with bright yellow flags tied to them. These are all made by tourists and locals. You can use them as landmarks to ensure you’re on the right trail. Also, keep an eye out for wild animals such as foxes and leopards.

Keep walking on a leisurely downhill trail inside a generous cover of the forest, which will give you respite from the late morning sun. This is a quiet section of the forest with an abundance of birds. The Himalayan woodpecker and Verditer Flycatcher can easily be spotted here. Walk for another 20 minutes, until you see three trails branching out.

The Verditer Flycatcher can easily be spotted in the forests from Deoriatal to Syalmi. Picture by Bird Watcher Ajit Hota

Take the center trail that ascends gradually. This is the trail to Rohini Bugyal.

After 20 minutes of gradual ascent, you’ll walk on level land for around 10 minutes. From here, the trail opens to small pasture land. You exit the forest even as the view of Chandrashila peak greets you upfront. Just before you, you see the second forest ridge that needs to be traversed.

Take the trail from the right side of the connecting ridge. It passes by a small grassland. The trail ascends sharply as you re-enter the forest once. This part of the forest has some of the oldest oak, maple, and rhododendron trees of the Kedarnath Sanctuary.

Another 20 minutes of trekking will have you reach the next landmark of the day, which is next to a small temple. This is known as Bhagdwal by the locals.

By now, you have trekked approximately 5 km. There are three trails branching out from here. The one towards the right descends sharply and reconnects with Sari Village. The one that descends from the left goes to a local village near Ukhimath. Take the center trail and walk for 15-20 minutes till you reach a small meadow.

From here, you can see Kala Parvat, which is a peak located on the right of Chandrashila peak. Below Kala Parvat is a small glacial lake, called Bisuri Tal. Legend has it, the Pandavas hid their weapons here.

The trail from here is a leisurely walk ahead for about 30 minutes as you pass a small rivulet. The stream is the only source of water and it is advisable to fill your bottles here. Rohini Bugyal is now only a 40 meter climb up from your right side.

| Photo PointRohini Bughyal (N 30°31.026, E 079 °11.702) is a small meadow surrounded by beautiful rhododendron forest and a view of the Kedar dome and the Kala Parvat peaks. The sunset view from here is incomparable!

The Syalmi campsite is across the small valley that’s just in front of the Rohini Bugyal campsite. It takes another 20-30 minutes to reach the campsite.

Day 4: Syalmi to Baniya Kund  6 km

  • Time taken: 4 hours, 6 km
  • Altitude: 7,710 ft (2,350 m) to 8,562 ft (2,610 m)
  • Trek gradient: Easy-moderate, an hour of descending till Akashkamini river, followed by a steep ascent through dense forest. And after an hour of climbing, you will see the first chaniya and from there, it’s a series of ascent and descend till Baniya Kund.
  • Water sources:  Lots of water sources on the way.

Next, you traverse the ridge of Rohini Bughyal to enter the meadows of Bhrujgali. From Rohini Bughyal, proceed towards the connecting forest ridge from your right. Observe a tall rhododendron tree, which is just a five-minute walk from the campsite.

Enter the forest of upper Rohini Bugyal and reconnect with the old trail to Chopta. Follow the trail that ascends gradually all the way to the top of the forested ridge. It takes 30 minutes to reach the ridge top, which is covered in dense forest cover.

The locals call this spot as Tikidi Khal. From here, there are two trails. One goes straight ahead towards Kala Parvat. This trail goes all the way to Bisuri Tal and Nandikund.

| Photo Point: The other trail takes a sharp right turn and descends rapidly all the way to Akash Kamini, a rivulet coming from Chandrashila. Pause here and take some photos by this gurgling stream.

Take the second trail and descend 500 ft to reach the stream crossing. It takes 20-30 minutes to reach the stream. It’s a good idea to refill your water bottles here. There is a small bridge that needs to be crossed.

Baniya Kund in winter is a whole new experience. Picture by Avijit Jamloki.

From here, take the trail that now ascends gradually with a series of three scissor bends. As you climb up, the view of the valley gets better and better. Around 20 minutes of the steady climb will take you to a small meadow.

There is a series of shepherd huts here made of stones. In summer, you will find locals occupying the huts with their livestock. As you enter the meadow, look for a path that diverts towards your right and around 20 minutes of descent through a jungle trail, you would come upon a road head. Walk for about a kilometer to reach the Baniya Kund campsite.

Day 5: Baniya Kund to Chopta by car. Trek to Chandrashila Peak via Tungnath and back to Baniya Kund

  • Altitude: 8,562 ft (2,610 m) to 12,083 ft (3,683 m)
  • Time taken: 5-6 hours, 8 km
  • Trek gradient: Gradual ascent to Tungnath (3 km) followed by a steep climb to Chandrashila for about 60 minutes. The descent on the same path takes around 90 minutes.
  • Water sources: None. Ensure you are well hydrated and carry 2 litres of water while starting from Chopta
  • Green Trail Hotspot: There is a lot of footfall of pilgrims around the Tungnath temple. Be prepared with your Ecobag to pick up litter from this area.

Start the trek early, preferably before sunrise, so that you can treat yourself to a sunrise view from Tungnath and the Chandrashila peak. The trek from Chopta to Tungnath is accessible via a cemented pilgrim trail. From your campsite, take this trail. It ascends sharply via a series of 11 scissor bends. The walk is pleasant but is a very steep climb.

The trek up to Tungnath temple is approximately 3 km. After you reach the 10th scissor bend, look for a flag and a small open temple towards your right side.

Tungnath temple - the highest abode of Lord Shiva shuts after Diwali
Tungnath temple – the highest abode of Lord Shiva shuts after Diwali

You can now see Chandrashila peak and Tungnath temple complex at the base of the peak. The views from here onwards are incredible. A connecting peak leading to Chandrashila, known as Ravanshila, is visible to your right. Tungnath temple is only half a kilometre away from here.

Towards your left, overlooking the valley is a section of Birch trees (Bhojpatra). This is a haven for birds like Monal and Griffin vulture. Take the 11th and last bend to reach the famous and holy Tungnath temple. The temple is closed in winter and you will find snow here from late December until around April.

| Folklore: Tungnath temple is the third of the Panch Kedars. These are 5 temples believed to have been built by the Pandavas to atone for the sins of killing their kin and Brahmins in the Kurukshetra war in the Mahabharata. Lord Shiva, whose forgiveness they sought, disguised himself as a bull. Parts of this bull appeared in 5 different places, each of these identified as a Panch Kedar. Tungnath is where his hands and chest are said to have appeared. This place has the distinction of being the only temple in the world to be located at such a high altitude (12,083 ft).

Chandrashila peak is 1.5 km above the temple complex. The route to Chandrashila peak is from behind the temple complex. Pass by the local dormitories and take the trail that winds from the right side of the base of Chandrashila peak. A trail goes by from here and takes a series of scissor bends.

During winter, expect this trail to be completely buried in snow. Those planning to do a winter trek here are strongly advised to carry crampons/micro-spikes and an ice-axe. The climb from Tungnath to Chandrashila is a 600 ft ascent and is a very steep climb.

After you negotiate a series of switchbacks, you will reach the upper base of Chandrashila Peak. From here, the summit of Chandrashila is visible. The climb up to the summit takes 30-45 minutes.

The Tungnath temple is beleived to have been built by the Pandavas. Picture by Shradda Tamore.

Once at the top of the peak, you get a 360-degree view of the mountains of Garhwal and Kumaon. Walk past a temple and see some great mountains of Uttarakhand, like Nanda Devi, Trishul, Nandaghunti, Kamet, Dunagiri, Chaukhamba, Kedar dome, Thalaysagar, Gangotri ranges, Jahanukut and more.

| Photo Point: The sunrise view from this spot is the best you will get to see in all of the Himalayas.

At Chandrashila, you find another temple dedicated to Lord Shiva. This is believed to have been built by Rama to atone for the sin of killing Ravana. This temple is open from April to October.

The deity is moved to Ukhimath in winter.

The trek back to Chopta is via the same route taken to reach here. It takes 20-30 minutes to reach Tungnath and another 60 minutes to reach Chopta from Tungnath.

Day 6:  Depart to Rishikesh

Chopta also has a few private guest lodges. Board your jeeps from here for a drive back to Rishikesh. You will reach Rishikesh between 6.00 and 7.00 pm. Cab costs will be approximately Rs 6,000 per vehicle on the way back as the drive from Chopta increases distance by 20 kms.

Banner image by Subhashis Pal

Plan Your Travel Deoriatal Chandrashila Peak Trek

It is great to see you going on the Deoriatal Chandrashila Trek. While it is a great trek to do, you need to get your travel plan worked out perfectly. Here is a step-by-step guide on what to do next. Use this guide and nothing else to plan your travel.  


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

Day 1: Book your air ticket to Delhi or Dehradun. If Dehradun, proceed to Rishikesh. If Delhi, book night train/bus to Haridwar. Click here for more explanation. 

Day 1: Rishikesh to Sari drive. It is an 8-9 hour drive from Rishikesh. Sari is the base camp for your trek. 

We organise transport to Sari from Live Free Hostel, Rishikesh. Our vehicles leave at 6:30 am sharp. It costs Rs 5,500 per vehicle (shared between 5-6 trekkers).

Day 2: Trek Sari (6,600 ft) to Deoriatal (7,840 ft);  2 hours, 3 km

Day 3: Trek Deoriatal (7,840 ft) to Syalmi (8,790 ft) via Rohini Bugyal; 10 km, 6-7 hours

Day 4: Trek Syalmi to Baniya Kund; 6 km, 4 hours

Day 5: Trek Baniya Kund (8,790 ft) to Tungnath and Chandrashila (12,080 ft) and back to Baniya Kund; 7-8 hours, 8 km

Day 6: Drive from Baniya Kund to Rishikesh. Start at 9.00 am for the drive.

Day 7: Book return train ticket to Delhi from Haridwar (Nanda Devi or Mussoorie express). Or book direct air ticket from Dehradun. Do not book plane tickets to your hometown from Delhi on Day 8. Click here for more explanation.  

 

|Note:

  1. While getting to Sari, we recommend you arrive a day earlier and stay at Rishikesh (Day Minus One). Our vehicles can pick you up at Rishikesh as it falls on the way (on Day 1). Staying at Rishikesh gives you a well deserved rest for the night. Plus some bonus sightseeing.
  2. On your return from the trek you can get off at Rishikesh. If you do not want to get off at Rishikesh, the final stop of the vehicle is at Rishikesh. You reach Rishikesh between 6.00 and 7.00 pm. 

It costs Rs 6,000 per vehicle on the way back as the drive from Baniya Kund increases the distance by another 20-25 kms.

Your travel route to the Sari basecamp passes through Rishikesh, Devprayag, Srinagar, Rudraprayag and Ukhimat.


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 Minus One, which is the day before Day 1 on the itinerary. If your trek start day is 25 August, book your air tickets for 24 August to either Delhi/Dehradun. 

There are two options for your flight booking.

Option 1: Fly directly to Dehradun. 

We recommend this. It gives you an added rest day at Rishikesh. 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 Rishikesh by train/bus.

|Tip: Dehradun Airport in Jolly Grant is closer to Rishikesh than Dehradun. It is 20 km from Rishikesh and 35 km from Dehradun.  

The Dehradun airport is somewhat inconvenient when it comes to city connectivity (either to Rishikesh or Dehradun). Airport buses that ply between Rishikesh to Dehradun via airport run every hour. In our experience, the hour can stretch to even 1½ 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 Rishikesh. 

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

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 Rishikesh. 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 Haridwar (Train No: 12401). It is a fully AC train that leaves at 23.45 hrs from Hazrat Nizamuddin and gets to Haridwar at 3.50 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.

For Metro train connectivity from Indira Gandhi International Airport, New Delhi, take a metro to Dhaula Kuan metro station. Get off and walk down to Durgabai Deshmukh South Campus metro station (there are convenient travelater belts over a skywalk). Take a metro to Hazrat Nizamuddin metro station over the pink line. It takes about 45 mins to an hour to get to Hazrat Nizamuddin over metro.

At Rishikesh, wait for Indiahikes pickup 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 Rishikesh, 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 Haridwar by 8.00 pm. Then take an immediate bus to get to Rishikesh by 9.30 pm (bus stand is opposite the railway station). Stay overnight at Rishikesh. Take the Indiahikes pickup the next morning directly from Rishikesh.   

Bus

If in case you do not get a train ticket, there are regular Volvo AC buses from Delhi’s ISBT Kashmiri Gate to Rishikesh. 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 Rishikeshfrom Delhi. AC bus tickets cost about Rs.700.  


3. Planning your return flight/train booking

Next, if your onward flight departs from Delhi, then book flight tickets for Day 8. 

Sometimes trekkers worry if they can book an early morning flight out of Delhi on Day 8. Yes, you can. But book flights that depart only after 8 am. Do not book any flight between 6.00 and 8 am. You may not reach Delhi in time. 

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 Haridwar (12402) that leaves Haridwar slightly past midnight (00.17 hrs) to get to Hazrat Nizamuddin Railway Station at 4.50 in the morning. From Hazrat Nizamuddin you get airport buses from outside the station as well as taxis. For Metro train walk down to the Hazrat Nizamuddin metro station, take a metro to Durgabai Deshmukh South Campus, get off and connect to Dhaula Kuan Airport line metro station (there are convenient travelator belts over a skywalk). From Dhaula Kuan you get metro train to the airport. 

| 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 Rishikesh. It is about 5½ – 6 hrs journey to Delhi. From Rishikesh add another hour to the journey. So if you take a bus that leaves around 9.00 pm, then expect to reach Delhi at around 3.00 am (ISBT Kashmiri Gate). A bus that leaves at 10 pm will reach Delhi around 4.00 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 on Day 7. Most metros are now well connected by Dehradun by flight. 


4. Planning your hotel/stay

Hotel options at Rishikesh

Zostel is a modern backpackers hostel, excellent for women travelling alone. It has basic amenities such as bunk beds, towels, good bathroom. Entire premises is quite hygienic. Bathrooms are shared. Average cost Rs 400 – 800 per bed. Rooms start at about Rs 1,200 https://www.zostel.com/ (for online booking). Location: https://goo.gl/maps/ugqLXUBcbgxnFt638

SK International which is next to Zostel is another good option. It has clean rooms with good amenities. Charges are about Rs 1,000 – Rs 1,200 per night. Phone: 013-524-42943. Location: https://goo.gl/maps/3nWu58ynjFyNn6on8

Shiv Shakti Hostel is another good, decent option at similar price range to Zostel. This is a hostel like Zostel. They also have rooms. Location: https://goo.gl/maps/qLs5wAThyyP8cmfR8

Hotel options at Haridwar

Bedhubs is a good bunk bed stay in Haridwar — which is rare amongst the Dharamshalas and Ashrams of Haridwar. It is quite close to the heart of the action at Haridwar, approximately 500 m from Har Ki Pauri, Ram Ghat. Charges are around Rs 800 -1,000. Phone: 01334 224 567. Location: https://g.page/bedhubs?share

Hotel Radiant near the Haridwar railway station has decent spacious rooms. Room rates are around Rs 750 for a non AC room and Rs 1,050 for an AC room. Contact person – Nitin Sharma – 9557155557. Location: https://goo.gl/maps/1AdiMiTtnAeGfF4Y8

Hotel Rahi, a government owned GMVN property is fairly decent. Spacious but old building. Almost opposite the Haridwar railway station, just past the bus stop. Prices start at around Rs 700 for a room. Phone: +91-135-2431793 Location: https://goo.gl/maps/bH25Zp8Di9SE3p757

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. 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


5.What if you miss the Indiahikes pickup? Getting to Sari on your own.

If you miss the Indiahikes pick up from Rishikesh. Here is how you can get to Sari base camp on your own. 

If you are at Haridwar, take a bus to Rishikesh as quickly as you can. A bus generally leaves every 15 mins from Haridwar to Rishikesh.

From Rishikesh take the first available bus to Rudraprayag. Buses leave at 6.00 am and 8.00 am. Generally all buses headed in the Badrinath direction pass by Rudraprayag. If you do not get a bus at the government bus stand, try the private bus stand, which is right next to it.

Rudraprayag is about 5 hours by bus from Rishikesh. On the way the bus passes Devprayag and Srinagar (the Uttarakhand Srinagar, not the Kashmir one).

At Rudraprayag, from the main market buses leave for Ukhimat every two hours. The last bus is at 2.00 pm. You also get shared taxis from the main market, but after 2 pm vehicles are scarce.

It takes about 3 hours to get to Ukhimat. Ukhimat is 15 kms prior to Sari. So it is almost there. From Ukhimat you get the last bus to Sari at 6.00 pm. 

Tip: While this bus hopping may sound cumbersome, we do it regularly at Indiahikes. They are a fun and a good way to know the real Uttarakhand. You also get to meet very interesting local people. So while no one wants to miss a pick up, don’t be too disheartened if it happens. You may just experience one of your best travel moments!      

How to get fit for this trek

The Deoriatal-Chandrashila trek is classified as an easy-moderate trek but like any other high altitude trek, it comes as with its challenges. The ascent to Chandrashila 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 everyday. 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 Deoriatal Chandrashila Trek

Deoriatal Chandrashila 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:

Deoriatal Chandrashila 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 Deoriatal Chandrashila , 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 Deoriatal Chandrashila 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 Deoriatal – Chandrashila, 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 Deoriatal – Chandrashila 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 Deoriatal – Chandrashila 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 Deoriatal – Chandrashila 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 Deoriatal – Chandrashila 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 Deoriatal Chandrashila

| 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:

Deoriatal Chandrashila 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 theDeoriatal Chandrashila 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.  

How safe is the Deoriatal-Chandrashila trek

The Deoriatal-Chandrashila Trek is a moderate one. Frankly, out of all our high altitude treks, Deoriatal-Chandrashila is the safest one. It gains altitude slowly so your body has enough time to acclimatize. We have seldom seen any cases of altitude sickness on this trek. Nevertheless, it is a high altitude trek that climbs up to 12,083 ft. At Indiahikes, we don’t let our guard down at high altitude, no matter what the altitude is.

While we do our bit to ensure a trekker’s life is safe, we also expect any trekker who is enrolling with us to know what could go wrong, and if it does, how to tackle it. 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 Deoriatal trek.

If you want to register for the Deoriatal trek, you have to meet the fitness requirements – the upper limit is 28. Although the ideal BMI is in between 18.5 and 24.5, we have kept a big margin for those who are unfit, giving them room to work on their fitness. You can take a look at the criteria on the registration page.

2. Monitoring health on a trek

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

On the Deoriatal trek, your Trek Leader will be monitoring three aspects everyday.

-Oxygen Level (Thrice a day – Upon reaching the campsite, at night and in the morning)
-Pulse Rate (Thrice a day)
-Blood Pressure (once a day)

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

To keep an eye on these numbers, every trekker will be issued a Health Card at the beginning of the trek. The Health Card is issued to monitor the trekker’s daily health. It also contains details of what symptoms he should look out for and what action he should take during emergencies. These Health Cards will be taken back at the end of the trek.

3. High Altitude Medical Kit

Your trek leader will also be carrying a full-fledged high altitude medical kit. This will include basic medicines and specific medicines catering to altitude sickness – Diamox, Dexamethasone and Nifedipine. Your Trek Leader will also be carrying a portable oxygen cylinder throughout the trek

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, where there might be too much snow.  

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.

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

What you need to know if you’re going on the Deoriatal trek

Slippery terrain

If you’re off on the Deoriatal trek any time between December to mid-April, there will most likely be snow on the trail. There are chances of slipping and falling down. While most times these falls are harmless because there is soft snow, sometimes, you could get injured.

You may notice that even the smallest cut or wound takes longer to heal the higher the altitude. Reasons for this are increasing stress hormones and lower overall oxygen delivery to the tissues. Wounds tend to get infected more easily as well.

Keeping your wounds clean and covered will prevent infection. Often applying a triple antibiotic ointment regularly will keep the wound from overly drying and aid in healing. 

Our trek leaders will always be around to assist you with injuries. Their medical kit will take care of it.

While this is the most likely issue you might face on the Deoriatal trek, you must also be aware of altitude sickness. Even in the rarest of the rare cases exist, you must be prepared to tackle it.

Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS)

AMS occurs when your body isn’t acclimatising to its surroundings. It can accelerate very rapidly, so it is important to identify the symptoms as soon as you see them. Before you read further, watch this video to understand the symptoms of AMS.

Where on the Deoriatal trek is AMS likely to affect you:

On the Deoriatal trek, if at all AMS hits you, it will most likely be at Bhrujgali on the way to Chopta, or beyond it, on the climb to Chandrashila. We haven’t seen such cases, but high altitude is unpredictable.

What to do if you feel symptoms of AMS:

ams-symptoms-indiahikesIf 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.

As a first step, your trek leader will run you through the Triple One Test – One Disprin, One litre of water and One hour of rest. If you’re suffering from dehydration, this will solve the problem and you will be fine in one hour. If the symptoms don’t go away, then he’ll begin to treat you for AMS, perhaps with a course of Diamox. If you’re already on a course of Diamox, your trek leader is likely to increase the dosage.

The increased dosage of Diamox usually takes care of the Acute Mountain Sickness. If it doesn’t then he will make you descent immediately.

Exit points on the Deoriatal trek:

The safest point on a trek where a trekker can descend to and rest is considered an Exit Point. Exiting the trek at any point is very easy. You can descend to either Sari or Chopta within around 4 hours from any point in the trek.

Closest hospital:

Ukhimath, which is around 12 km from Sari and 60 km from Chopta has a dispensary. The closest hospital is in Rudraprayag, which is accessible by road from Sari and Chopta in 1.5 hours and 1 hour respectively. Gopeshwar and Srinagar, which are a few hours away will be your other options for a hospital.

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. You should be able to recognize 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 this video 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

 

The Indiahikes 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. 

Given that, we have one of the most trekker-friendly cancellation policies. 

Take a look at the Indiahikes cancellation policy below. This policy is effective starting January 29th, 2020.

In the event that you cancel your trek, this is the cancellation policy we follow:

– Cancellation 30 days before the starting date of the trek — Get your full trek fee back in an Indiahikes Trek Voucher OR get a monetary refund with 15% cancellation charges.

– Cancellation between 30 days and 20 days before the starting date of the trek — Get 80% of the trek fee in an Indiahikes Trek Voucher OR get a monetary refund with 50% cancellation charges.

– Cancellation less than 20 days before the starting date of the trek — No monetary refund, get 50% of your fees in an Indiahikes Trek Voucher 

 

In the rare event that we cancel your trek, this is the cancellation 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, government orders, unexpected global health issues 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 once it has been paid for. 

If you cancel any rental gear from our store:

  • Cancellation of rental gear 7 days before the starting date of the trek — Get a monetary refund with 4% cancellation charges.
  • Cancellation of rental gear less than 7 days before the starting date of the trek — Get a voucher of the whole amount you have paid for the rental gear. This voucher is applicable on your 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. 

Special Cases That Could Occur:

There are some special cases that could occur when you’re on a trek.

1. You may not be able to complete the trek because of bad weather, high snow conditions, or any natural calamity.

2. You may have to leave your trek abruptly (could be due to altitude sickness, abnormal BP, unpreparedness for the trek, any emergencies at home)

In the above two cases, you’re welcome to come back and repeat the same trek any time in future. You do not have to pay us for this. If you’d like to repeat your trek, get in touch with your Trek Coordinator and they’ll help you. 

Important note: Your offloading and rental fee will not be refunded in the above two cases.

3. You may not be able to report at the base camp at all (could be due to blocked roads / cancelled flights/curfews), we will try to accommodate you in the next day’s team (if we have one). 

In the third case, if we cannot accommodate you in the next day’s trek, we will give you a Trek Voucher of the entire trek fee (including your offloading and rental fee), which you can use on any Indiahikes trek within the next one year.

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 Trek Coordinator. 

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

At Indiahikes, we can’t help but fall in love with a few trekking trails. And we love revisiting them, perhaps in other seasons, when treks take on a totally different hue. In such cases, we do not like the thought of having to pay for it. Our trekkers shouldn’t have to pay either.

So if you have loved a trek that you did with us and want to repeat it, you’re welcome to sign up for the trek. We will not charge you for this. (Many people think this is a rumour, but it’s true.) 

To repeat your trek for free, just get in touch with your Trek Coordinator. We’ll help you sign up with no charges. 

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

Your trek fee includes –

  1. Accommodation – Stay from Day 1 to Day 5 (Sari to Baniya Kund). Sari and Baniya Kund have guest house accommodation. You will camp on the trek (3 per tent).
  2. Meals – All meals from Dinner at Sari on Day 1 to breakfast at Baniya Kund on Day 6 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 Rishikesh and drop you back there from Baniya Kund. This will cost Rs.5,500 per 5-6 seater vehicle on the way to Sari and Rs.6,000 per 5-6 seater vehicle on the way back from Baniya Kund. 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
Cancellation Policy

Cancellation Policy

In case, you wish to cancel your trek, please login to your account and cancel.
Cancellation requests will not be taken over phone or email.

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% (cancellation charges) from the total fee you have paid. Also, if you have opted for a trek insurance, the amount will not be refunded.

If a trek is called off at the last moment due to a natural calamity/unforeseen circumstances (like rains, earthquake, landslides, strike, bandh, unexpected global health issue 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.

Fitness

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. Therefore, on treks, cardiovascular training is critically important. The trek has gradual climbs and steep descents on the summit day. As a measure of your fitness, we require you to be able to run at least 5 km in 40 minutes by the time your trek starts. If you are 45 years or above, try to cover 5 km in 47 minutes. This is a minimum requirement.

If you prefer cycling over running, then try to cover 20 km in 60 minutes.
Unable to do so can make your trek difficult.

In addition, preparation of trek needs to include strength and flexibility training. Registering for the trek is an understanding that you will undertake the mandated fitness training and upload the fitness screenshots on your dashboard. Trekkers who have not adequately prepared may be asked to discontinue the trek at any point.

Indiahikes has the right to reject trekkers who do not meet our eligibility requirement at the base camp.

Backpack Offloading

Backpack Offloading

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 charges – Rs 1,000 plus GST of 5%. Charges for last minute offloading during the trek will be Rs. 375 per day inclusive of tax. You can opt for offloading directly your dashboard after your payment is done for the trek.

Partial offloading is not allowed. The backpack cannot weigh more than 9 kg. No suitcases/strolleys/duffel bags will be allowed.
Online offloading in advance is possible up to three days prior to the trek start date.

Discount Policy

Discount Policy

Discount for a group of 10 and above

If there is a group size of 10 trekkers and above, then we will waive off the trek fee charges for one person.

Note - There is no discount available if the group size is 9 or less than that.

You can register the entire group and send us an email. If the group is registering individually, then the primary participant needs to send an email to the Trek Coordinator with the list of trekkers from the same group.

If you want to make the payment individually, then individual registrations have to be done.

This will be the case for a group of 10 trekkers. So if you have a group of 20 trekkers, then we will waive off the charges for 2 trekkers.

Repeat Trekker Policy

Repeat Trekker Policy

At Indiahikes, we believe that the mountains hold all the aces. The weather could play spoilsport, the altitude could mess with a trekker, the unpredictability of nature itself could turn against him. Whatever the reason might be, it is never nice to turn away from a trek midway.

In the event that a trekker has to come down without completing your trek, they can always head back to the mountain and do the same trek again. If this happens, trekkers don’t have to pay the trek fee. They have to just make the optional payment for the insurance amount.

On another note, it could also happen that you love a trek so much that you want to go back time and again. Trekkers don’t have to pay the trek fee for repeating a trek.

Note – The Repeat Trekker Policy holds good only for Indian Treks.
It is not valid for treks we run in Nepal.

Transport

Transport

Indiahikes organises transport from Rishikesh to Sari on Day 1. It takes about 7-8 hours to reach Sari. The cost is Rs.6,000 per cab.
The Deoriatal-Chandrashila trek ends at Chopta. From here, it takes around 8 hours to drive back to Rishikesh. Indiahikes organises this transport for a fare of Rs.6,000 per cab.
Both the above costs are not included in your trek fee. It is to be shared by trekkers and paid directly to the driver.

Can I keep extra luggage at the base camp of Sari?

Can I keep extra luggage at the base camp of Sari?

Yes, you can keep your extra luggage at Sari.

Once the trek ends, you will be able to collect your bag at Baniya Kund.
Our team will arrange for this. We do not charge you any fee for this.

Ensure you do not keep any valuables at the base.
Laptops, mobile phones, cash or any important items cannot be kept here.

Is there an option to offload my backpack on this trek?

Is there an option to offload my backpack on this trek?

Yes, there is an option to offload your backpack (have a porter carry it for you). This will cost Rs 750 + 5% GST if you book it in advance. If you decide to offload once you reach Sari, the amount will be Rs 350 per day inclusive of tax.

The offloaded bag should not weigh more than 9 kg. Strolleys, duffel bags, suitcases etc. are not allowed.

Online offloading in advance is possible up to five days prior to the trek start date. You can opt for this from your Trek dashboard directly.

Is there a mobile network on this trek? Are there any electricity charging points on this trek?

Is there a mobile network on this trek? Are there any electricity charging points on this trek?

You’ll find Vodafone/Airtel/BSNL network at the basecamp, Sari. There will be an intermittent signal at the first campsite. There’s also network at the view point at Deoriatal. But do not depend on it.

Finish all your important calls before reaching Sari. Please inform anxious family members about limited phone connectivity. There will be no electricity charging points anywhere on the trek.

What is the type of accomodation my trek?

What is the type of accomodation my trek?

You will be staying at a guest house in Sari and at Baniya Kund.
The rest of the nights, you will be camping in tents.
Each tent will be accommodating 3 trekkers

Can you arrange pickup from Rishikesh?

Can you arrange pickup from Rishikesh?

Yes, trekkers will have the option to stay at Rishikesh. The vehicle pick you up at 7.30 at Rishikesh.
The pickup location would be in front of Zostel, Rishikesh.

Will I get snow on this trek?

Will I get snow on this trek?

You should find snow during the winter and summer season, from December to April is when you can expect snow. After this, you will not have snow on this trek.

Here is what trekkers have to say about their experience at Deoriatal Chandrashila Trek

Kalyani Tathe

Batch of
October 2020

It was awesome, I enjoyed a lot; precisely the trails; everything was on time right from Rishikesh to Sari basecamp and from Baniya Kund to Rishikesh; all of us made to the summit which was icing on the cake. 

The trek was amazing, the trail made it more adventurous and breathtaking; I indulge the company of the nature and people; those weren't just teammates or fellow trekkers, it was an extended family; we had  a lot of fun; at the basecamp as well as trekking through the trails. the stops on the trek were amazing; as a team we did really well, Vivek was out trek leader and he organized activities to bolster out teamwork and morale; even our trek guide Pankaj was very supportive; everyone was amiable and kind; those were well invested days; the trek surely impacted me physically, mentally and spiritually like it was already promised 

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Salman Bagwan

Batch of
October 2020

very well.
please continue treks in small batches only

 

good food
co-operative trek leader
precautions taken for Covid
Friendly staff
 

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PRIYANKA KARANWAL

Batch of
October 2020

The Trek was amazing. My experience was really good.

I strongly felt that Indiahikes’s safety is of global standards. Safety Measures have been taken for individuals due to High Altitude Trek and due to covid as well.
 

Very Supportive Trek Leader Vivek and Trek Guide Satish. 

Safety Measures been taken for individuals due to High Altitude Trek and due to covid as well.

 

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Ashish Jain

Batch of
December 2019

It was my first trek. I was very enthusiastic & scared at the same time that how my track will go. But this track provided me one of the greatest moments of my life. The staff was excellent. They helped me a lot in gaining the track experience and also taught me the myths related to that place.

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Divij Tolia

Batch of
December 2019

It was my first trek with Indiahikes and it was really amazing. The food, the morale of the trek leader and the guides, the beauty of nature really kepe me going.

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Divij Jain

Batch of
December 2019

Unity. Damn straight. 
A feeling of togetherness. No matter how difficult the task is when everyone walks hand in hand motivating each other; it feels easy.

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Ashish Jain

Batch of
December 2019

Mountains are like stairs to success. Everyone finds it extremely difficult to climb it but when a person reaches its top the feeling is absolutely fantastic. Moreover, mountains also make people stand courageously even in difficult times.

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Divij Tolia

Batch of
December 2019

The idea of Green Trails that Indiahikes came up with is really cool and innovative. You pick up every plastic waste that you see during the trek and put it inside.

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Shreeya Verma

Batch of
December 2019

Life-changing experience. The mountains give you peace and quiet the way nothing else can.

This trekking expedition wouldn't have been possible without the Indiahikes team. The attention to detail (and safety!), love and care provided by every team member is unsurpassable. 

However, I would like to comment on the living conditions during the trek. They were as minimal as possible! While i eventually came to appreciate the minimalistic living, a little heads up would have been nice :)

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Dhaval Bakshi

Batch of
December 2019

From start at Basecamp, things looked quite out of place for any newcomer, but that's the good part of coming out of the comfort zone. 

No regrets for choosing IH without blinking an eyelid. Thoroughly professional with safety being the top priority, what can anyone ask for more in it.

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Utsavi Parikh

Batch of
December 2019

The trek was really great. The trails for all the days were different and so well thought of. 
The facilities and the food were amazing including the entire staff of IndiaHikes. 

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Nirali Kansara

Batch of
December 2019

The mountains make you realize how small a part you form of this world. Trekking in the mountains has always been a very grounding experience for me, and I enjoy the entire transformation of my emotions right from the base till the summit. It is not just about reaching the top, but the entire journey and what it does to your body and spirit. And the bonds you form on mountains, the hardships you face, the kindness you give and get in return, is something very unique and cannot be found in city lives.

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Dhaval Bakshi

Batch of
December 2019

This trek had given me many life lessons within a short span of 6 days, to name a few;
* Relationships - Building new ones with unknown people and maintaining them through the years to come
* Diversity & Inclusion - There is no status nor divide when it comes to the mountains, all are equal and yet unique 
* Teamwork & Passion - Together we stand tall and divided we can fail. If you have the love for something, you can go for the highest pinnacle without a doubt!
* Self-Belief & Self-love - The mountains are the only place that teaches a person the true aspect of love and belief for oneself. I have never felt so much of love for myself and the belief I have had for my life. Truly giving me total "Unborness" for years to come

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Vishwanatha Bhargava M S

Batch of
December 2019

As a first time trekker, I had an amazing experience. I'm falling short of words to explain my trek. We could see the Chandrashila peak right from the sari base camp. Day 1 from sari to Deoria-Tal was a mild trek, and a stop at rohini bugyal should us almost the whole route we were about to take in the next 3 days. The sunset at Deoria-Tal blew my mind away. The continuous change in the colour of the mountains was just wow. The next day, the first half went easy with gradual ascent and descent, but the 2nd half was the steep descent to syalmi which drained all the energy I had. But the reward was the view of Milkyway galaxy in the clear sky after sunset. Thanks to team Indiahikes on YouTube and on emails, I used 2 trekking poles which were my lifesaver. I can't thank you enough for that suggestion. The next day, route to baniyakund was a steep ascent but I didn't have any problem thanks to the beautiful jungle we passed through.. after relaxing for a bit, we made snowman near or tent and enjoyed. That night was terrific due to the extreme temperatures ever faced. Thanks to Raju Da who trained us to use the microspikes and also boosted our confidence for the next day's summit push. He was very strict regarding the time management and discipline, that we were at the spot 15mins before the stipulated time even in that cold weather.  I literally can't say in words how good the summit climb experience was. Specially after crossing tungnath, I was in the front and was my excitement was at its peak. There were 3 or 4 places where we were redirected to a new route to avoid steep hill climb and take a zigzag pattern, where I literally sank in the snow till my waist.. I just LOVED that experience. Our team was very quick to reach the summit and had 1 full hour to spend on the peak. As soon as I reached the peak, I got so emotional that I cried for 5 mins.  I couldn't believe that "I" made it till there. The view from up there.............................. I don't know what to say. What else do you want to see other than this in your life.. I don't think there is anything better than that in the whole world. I just realized that I wrote so much. I just re-lived the whole trek writing this that I couldn't stop.

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Vishwanatha Bhargava M S

Batch of
December 2019

I realised how fit i can be. 1 Jan 2020(summit day), i call it day of self-realisation for me.
I came out of my introvert zone which was my main focus of this solo travel.
I was reminded once again that we are so small in front of Mother Nature and we do not possess any right to destroy it or dirty it. We don't control her, rather we are being controlled continuously by her.
Getting out of our comfort zone like this once in a while makes us appreciate all the luxury we have back in this city life.

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Murari Garg

Batch of
December 2019

Safely standards are high and great I believe. Although coming to hygiene, usage of the same water for cleaning of tiffins by the trekkers was not hygienic as the same water after repeated usage became dirty with everyone's waste food. Saving water is okay, but for that trekkers can be given a fixed amount of water for each wash. 
Also, The toilets in baniyakund can have some light arrangements as even with our headlamps, it was difficult to locate them at night as they were sort of far from the tents and one can slip or get injured when going alone for the toilet.
 

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NEERAJ GHOLE

Batch of
December 2019

The overall experience was positive. A big shout out to super woman Ayushi, and her guides, Rahul Negi and Kailash Singh. All of them were extremely helpful and supportive of the demands raised by trekkers. I would like to put a good word for Ayushi, and her people management skills were top notch. She was always polite, patient and involved with all the people in the group.

A big thank you to Vivek Sahu at Sari as well for accommodating demands to house a small group together. 

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Veena BP

Batch of
December 2019

The overall experience was very good.
Type of the trail taken was beautiful
Food was pretty amazing please don’t lose the quality or quantity. Keep up the good work
Green trail initiative was impressive 
Knowledgeable trek guides and responsible trek leader
Suggestion: may you can start using solar energy in an effective way at camp sites.

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Sandeep BM

Batch of
December 2019

I think the green trails had left a deep impact. How difficult it is to get rid of plastic trash is a big concern in the Mountains. The initiative by India hikes of using one's own cutlery is something we can implement back here in cities.

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Varun Baghla

Batch of
December 2019

On the day we had to trek to Chandrshila summit, we started to trek at 5:40 AM from Chopta and kept on walking in snow covered in the dark because we knew that if we want to summit Chandrashila peak, we just have to walk and think about nothing else.

On that day i realized that in Life also, if we want to achieve something, we should just concentrate on doing our job to the best of our abilities without thinking about anything else. If we continue to work honestly towards our goals, then we will definitely achieve them.

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Sushmita Chakraborty

Batch of
December 2019

Loved the trek - especially the focus that you guys take w.r.t. safety and care. May it be the details in the briefing, food, support during the trek trails - every little care. The highlight is the trek leader 'syama krishna' who was very friendly and approachable and at the same time very professional in the way he delivered his role as a trek lead. Commendable!

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Prachi Singhal

Batch of
December 2019

I returned to the mountains almost after 3 years and the very first thing that I realized was that no matter where I am in the world, you can never take mountains out of me. Hoping to return to the mountains soon.
This untouched raw beauty of nature and these mountains standing in all there magnanimity always makes you realize how small we are and how important it is to live the life to fullest.
Also, I learned that If I want to continue trekking, I need to up my fitness game. Which I have already started working on :)
 

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Aishwarya Kate

Batch of
December 2019

By far this has been my most beautiful experience of my life. I personally don't think there were any shortcomings in the entire management right from the 1st day till the summit day.
Special mention about our trek Leader Neytra. One gem of a person. My constant motivation throughout the trek!

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Shankar BN

Batch of
December 2019

Absolutely amazing trek mostly thanks to our trek leader.

I am not easily moved. In fact, though I appear outwardly social, I consider myself to be quite skeptical of new people and experiences. However, this note isn't about me. 

This note is about the absolutely spectacular experience I had trekking with Avijit Jamlokhi, our trek leader on the Deoriatal-Chandrashila trek batch of 22nd December. 

Education: Our education started from Day 0. While we were briefed about the trek the night before, Avijit covered all aspects of how to pack our bags, how to wear our shoes and how to interact with each other. Not only did he cover each aspect in specific detail, but he also told us why each point is important and how each of those enhances our experience while trekking. This education got better each day and we were in awe of how much of information he held in his cool and composed head and how open he was to hear our thoughts as well. Specifically, education sessions showing us other peaks as we traversed the difficult terrain gave us tremendous confidence that we shall now carry with us for the rest of our lives. I am absolutely sure I can name all peaks from Chaukhamba all the way down to Kedar peak when you wake me up from a distant slumber year from today. I also know so many things about plastic waste, segregation and waste management in general thanks to him.

Motivation: He motivated every single person whether fast or slow, fit or unfit, young or old with equal aplomb. In fact, he motivated us so much each minute that each of us trekkers was more than willing to motivate each other in the process. There were tough times when we had soaked socks, iced shoes, times when a couple of our trekkers fell ill and a couple had to walk back on summit day. None of this deterred Avijit from looking beyond his own discomfort and encouraging our lot to do our absolute best. I am happy I was fit enough to be walking beside him as much as possible. 

What happened on the summit day literally brought me to tears. This man, all of 23 years was such an amazing leader that he held the Indian flag high up, obscuring himself from view but ensuring the flag is high and mighty. His impeccable behavior and respect for the mountains brought me to tears. Did I tell you I am not easily moved?

Entertainment: Along with what I consider the above as the perfect package for a trek leader, he has so many hidden talents of mimicry and comedy that he had us in splits. I told you I was fit enough but there were times I was out of breath because my lungs couldn't take any more of my laughing for this man's jokes. Why he does trekking and not stand up comedy is a shock to me.

All these things separately may mean he is just doing a good job but the very fact that he did all of them impeccably well while ensuring that our hearts were in it whether it was related to fitness, trekking, camaraderie, motivation or environment; it was a treat to watch and learn from this true lead

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alefiya raja

Batch of
December 2019

I loved loved loved the trek! This was my first indiahikes trek and I have some acquaintances who have trekked with IH before, they told me I would love it and never trek with any other company again and they were absolutely right! 
Ever since I've come back I'm planning for my next trek with IH. The management, the food, the stay in tents, the activities, the information, the time management, the hydration breaks, our trek leader, Avijit, everything was perfect and splendidly planned. Not only did we have an actual trek experience, but we also had so much fun, made so many friends, danced when we had popcorn as a snack at 10000ft.! The green trails initiative by IH made us aware of the dirt and littering in our mountains and all of us took it as our duty to pick up the litter as we see it. I don't have any suggestions about any changes that should be made because right from our booking confirmation till after our trek, IH has been very very hospitable.

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rohit patil

Batch of
December 2019

This trek has been an amazing experience for me personally. I loved the way it was executed. Our trek leader Mr. Avijit was of superb guidance and hell of an entertainer. It was a great time with him as I got to learn a lot about the Himalayas. Also, I made some friends which I definitely know will stay lifelong. 
 
I also learned a lot and got motivated to keep the environment clean. Great initiative by India hikes to collect the garbage from our mountains, segregate it in different forms and dispose it in the very right ways. I will definitely follow the same in my city life.

One thing that can be improved can be the rental stuff that is provided could be given in a cleaner and much better condition. 

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Ravikumar Alampally

Batch of
December 2019

This is the first Himalayan trek, first north trek and first trek with India Hikes for me. I cannot forget the memories, knowledge, courage, and happiness that I received from this. Trek leader Avijit and assistants were of awesome knowledge, perspective to the Himalayas and the path we choose to reach the summit. The courage they give and feed to fellow trekkers gives more energy in order not to feel any kind of dizziness and tiredness. The food was amazing and was available on time every day and was served very hot. Really hats off for the cooks who helped this to happen. On the final day, we had "Raju da" along with us in order to support reaching summit. Their timing sense and guidance really make everyone to reach the summit on time and safe.
Amazingly the whole fellow trekkers were so fantastic that it was not like an unknown member, were in every one supported every other as a family and the whole journey of mine made an awesome era of my life.

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Ashish Panda

Batch of
December 2019

I had an awesome trek and writing to share my feelings and feedback.

You have a very motivated field team. It was my first winter snow trek and would like to cherish the memories forever thanks to the indiahikes team.

Ayushi was our trek leader and she managed the whole trek in a mature and professional manner.
I was surprised when I learned she is only 21. I do not know from where she gets so much energy and enthusiasm.
Probably she wakes ahead of us, finishes medical tests, kitchen related stuff, gets ready ahead of us, does the trek with us carrying heavy oxygen cylinders and still has energy post-trek to tell stories, manage kitchen (snacks, dinner), etc.
As per her, she does all this as the whole team is like a family for her. That's a big statement.
I felt she is the glue that holds everyone together on the field. Very passionate about her work, great communication skills, very confident and authoritative when needed.
She is a true gem and an asset to Indiahikes and I am sure she has a great future ahead beyond the field.

About our technical guides Sunil, Manoj (Mamaji) and Raju da. They were the best ones with years of experience to guide us through jungle trails, fresh soft snow where there was no trail left.
The last day was a different experience with hard slippery snow. Raju da's perfect instructions and guidance meant that we made the summit and back with great stories to tell.
Also thanks to those unseen faces in the kitchen who fed us lip-smacking meals and kept our morale high.

For a trekker, indiahikes mean these great individuals on field. They make or break the overall experience.
With my trek experience, I can tell you that your organization is in safe hands.

I will come back to the mountains again to repeat the awesome experience and make some more new memories.

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Naveen MV

Batch of
December 2019

it's really a lot of life lessons I am taking back from the mountains, I'll list out a few
1.how to be self-prepared and self-responsible.
2.How to be with a group of new ppl around you
3.how to take care of myself and my stuff
4.forest and mountains are sacred places, we should respect it and anything can change in a moment.
5.how to listen and adhere to the trek leader and trek guides suggestions when you are along with a group of ppl.
 

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Sujoy Mahato

Batch of
December 2019

The trek went quite well. We also got a great amount of snow as well as snowfall. One thing that we missed is going to the Chandrashila summit. Maybe there was quite a big amount of snow and the trail was not visible. Still, maybe there was the possibility to push to the summit with some really fit trekkers. But it's not that important, we were happy with the overall experience.

Another thing I want to point out is on the fourth day of the trek we needed to descend down the same 4  km that we ascended the previous day to reach the camp and then take a usual road to reach Baniya Kund. I don't know the usual trail was blocked due to snow, but maybe Indiahikes can try to find some alternative trail that will give the trekkers more diversity than traversing the same path twice

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Shweta Rani

Batch of
December 2019

The trek was an amazing experience for me. It was my first experience and thoroughly loved it. From the India hikes team to my trek team, all of them were very kind and cooperative.

The food and the way in which they celebrated my birthday touched my heart in many ways.

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Veena Naidu

Batch of
December 2019

I loved the trek every inch. The Trekeader Avijit knitted the group together very well. We all were bonded soon and felt like a family. Avijit told us innumerable mythological stories along the way and kept us all motivated all the time. The strain of trekking was not felt much. Every day was a different excellent achievement and felt we could do more. The food was too very good and inviting and served hot. Excellent arrangements you have.
We heard a lot about how Indiahikes stared the winter treks and how new treks are initiated.
I am very happy about how you educate the trekkers on minimal wastages and how to manage the waste and keep your environment clean and healthy. Punctuality is one more great lesson I learned along the trek.

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Anchal Bansal

Batch of
December 2019

This was my first trek and the third for my dad (first with Indiahikes). Though we had to return back home the second day only,  owing to high BP of my dad, we were really impressed with the seriousness with which the health protocol is followed and not just spoken about. Food was excellent- simple and nutritious. Overall 2 days were good with the Indiahikes team especially our trek leader Ayushi, always there for us. Keep at it guys! 

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Anjali Thomas

Batch of
December 2019

It was a beautiful experience.
Everything was almost perfect, right from the logistical arrangements to the way the team was led. Ayushi did a great job of handling the team. I loved the fact that she tried to bring in some different experience by way of tree-hugging, and asking people to close eye and absorb the stillness at a spot near a small waterfall.
The kitchen staff and guide were very sweet and helpful.

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Noah Croushore

Batch of
December 2019

The journey was incredible!! The whole trek was super amazing and I look forward to hiking again. The trek leader, avijit, and ayushi were fantastic. I especially loved their passion and love for the mountains. Avijit especially knew all the local words and stories, he was incredibly patient too. 

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Rinku Patel

Batch of
December 2019

Being the first trek, I was anxious about everything. from my health, my stamina to the company I have selected for this trek. I am glad to say that I made the right choice. Starting from pick up to base camp, all the experience was smooth enough to make you comfortable. 
Base camp transfers: Vehicle was in good condition and spacious enough for comfortable seating
Welcome: The entire staff came to welcome the group. The introduction session was conducted by the leaders. Expectation setting was completed professionally
Ascend and Descend: Trek leaders age group was 21-25 years. They were the most active and healthiest in the lot :) Strong enough to be reliable with any injury or weight. Motivated enough to not let you give up at all. Patient enough for a slow pacer like me. Special mention to Avijit - Trek Leader who was adamant that he would not let me give up, Aayushi - Asst. Trek leader who would not stop motivating me and was with me all the time and Yashpal - Helper / Assistant on the summit day - Without him, it would have been difficult to complete the trek. All 3 of them did not show a sign of frown and were more than happy to be able to help the entire team achieve the summit
Facilities: Eco toilets, clean tents, clean sleeping bags, and rented equipment. All are in good and hygienic conditions. Safe to use... 
Food: Super yummy food. In the price they charge, variety and quality of food are least expected. However, food is one reason, that would make me do another trek. Hot breakfast, lunch, and dinner unless you have a long day and have a packed lunch or snack. Unlimited food so no restriction. Dal, roti, sabzi, salad, papad and sweet. Super cold weather and soup is served :) 

Hence, I said, A-Z, Indiahikes is perfect and professional. 

Changes / Suggestion:
1) We were informed during Day 1 of the briefing that if oxy levels are low or BP is high, a person can be sent back anytime. I did not read this anywhere on your site. It must be there somewhere. However, I would suggest you mention this as a Warning especially people who suffer from high BP are mentally prepared. 

2) Security deposit: We have rented the gear but did not remember reading anything about a security deposit. Ignore if this is mentioned in the rental section. If not, I would advise you to add it so people carry extra cash...

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HARIHARAN SHANKARANARAYANAN

Batch of
December 2019

Safety is very important for all of us.

I was in for a surprise when the TL ordered us to maintain our health cards and asked us to get the card to him thrice a day. But soon realized that it helps us directly. The BP measurement and Oxy-meter were wonder equipments on high altitudes.
The micro-spikes on the summit day was a life savior. Wearing them increased our confidence multi-fold and overcome our fear of walking on ice-sheets :)

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Rupali Shah

Batch of
November 2019

I loved everything about the trek. The trek leader Jaya was very supportive and a pure combination of teacher and friend. I liked how our first trek day was a warm-up and not too heavy so that everyone got charged up for the rest of the days. The food was just amazing. It's quality, simplicity and taste. The entire trail was beautiful and the summit day was just mesmerizing. The guide and co-guide, Manoj and Manish were very approachable and knowledgeable. The places of stay were very clean. I am looking forward to come for more treks with Indiahikes. Thank you for such an incredible experience.

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Saurabh Dasgupta

Batch of
November 2019

My 4th trek with Indiahikes confirms my trust with the trekking community. Its wonderful philosophy of giving back to mother nature is very appreciable. Fitness is given high priority. The local staff is very dedicated to the hospitality of the trekkers. Awesome food and interactive activities make it even better.

Green trails is a unique initiative in today's world. The trekkers making an effort to clean the environment are a great realization for the passer-by and locals. Each hand makes an effort to make the environment cleaner and greener.

Overall, Thank you IH for the extraordinary experience once again!

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Gayatri Hegde

Batch of
October 2019

This is so true. As working adults living in cities, there is an abrasion of the deep values that connect us to nature and our own selves. It has been a few years since I really tried to achieve something that seems impossible at first. DC was one such challenge, and I felt so refreshed to work up the dormant determination and actually stretch to achieve something (reaching the peak!!). 
I also realized that we need very few material things if we can find other natural ways of fulfillment (or pass time). I didn't use half of the things carried in my bag, and the phone was switched off for 6 days. It was really a different way to live. Seeing the simple and yet difficult lives of the local villagers were also eye-opening - how they walk long distances, work hard to maintain their land and crops, and live in harmony with nature. 

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Kamalakshi Sithanandan

Batch of
October 2019

I had a very great time and the over experience was mind-blowing.  I was a person who was obsessed with cleanliness and hygiene. The trek did bring a huge change in me. I would definitely tell that I am trying to be a better human being. Also, this trek experience did show me where I stand in fitness and how much harder I need to work to stay healthy.

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Ramesh Krishnamurthy

Batch of
October 2019

Trek went very well. Starting out with a low bar for a 4-day trek, I was able to go through the four days of enjoyable treks and with a lot of support, encouragement and best-of-class company with the gung-ho youngsters, I achieved way more than my own expectations. Logistics and arrangements were well taken care of, setting the right expectations about the convenience and comfort at the campsites. Healthy, well-planned meals - even though 4 of them a day felt an overkill, and timely setup and close-downs were very well done. Preparedness for rain and adverse climate were communicated early enough that we were neither surprised nor inconvenienced. Pleasant and helpful trek lead (Adi is a phenomenon, by the way) and the guides (Manoj and Mayank) were always in the thick of things and made me feel I could climb Mt Everest...

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Deoriatal and Chandrashila Trek with IndiaHikes

Thorough preparation is required for any trek. This blog begins on Day 0. Read on to know how Mayank and his daughter's Deoriatal Chandrashila Trek went.

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Drawn to Scale – Deoriatal Chandrashila Trek

Anakan writes about his first trek experience on the Deoriatal Chandrashila trek. He writes about what he calls "the mystery of the mountains." Read on to unravel this mystery.

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Available dates

No cancellation charges for trek bookings from July 1st until Dec 31st

(choose a trek any time in future)

In light of COVID-19, since travel and treks are uncertain, Indiahikes has waived off all cancellation charges if you register for a trek before Dec 31. Which means, for all registrations before Dec 31, even if the trek is in December or later, apart from the basic 4% transaction charges, there are no cancellation charges from Indiahikes.

This helps you to register for a trek with peace of mind, knowing you can cancel your trek even until the last moment. Trekkers have started registering for treks, and we'd like you to do so with full confidence. We don't want you to worry about losing out through cancellations.

Nov December 2020 Jan
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  • What the colours mean
  • Available
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  • Waitlist
    The group is full, but cancellations are likely to happen. We have 5 waitlist slots for every group. You may register for the group. Waitlist slots confirmation chances are high if booked more than 30 days in advance.
  • Last 'x' slots
    Indicates the number of slots available in a batch.
  • Full
    Indicates the group is full. No further slots are likely.

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51 thoughts on “Deoriatal Chandrashila Trek

    1. If you’re running half marathons, then you’re not too old for any trek. 🙂 That’s fantastic fitness. You’re welcome to join us on the trek. 🙂

    1. Absolutely! It’s a very good trek for first timers, and you’ll meet many other beginners on the trek too. 🙂

    1. Hi Nimisha, the Chandrashila slope sees way too much snow in these months, which blocks large sections of the trail. This is why we won’t be running it in January and February. We reopen it in March, when there’s still snow, but not so much to block the trail.

    1. Hi Jayesh, December is not really a good time to see flowers. The flowers at Deoriatal bloom in March and April — those are rhododendrons, that grow in a few forests in the Himalayas. It’s a good time to see birds though. Birds are out in October, November and early December, and then in March and April.

    1. Hi Sravan, if you’re trekking on your own, then yes, you’ll surely need microspikes (not crampons) to trek on snow. You’ll also need an ice axe to cut steps to the summit if you’re going at a time when there are no other teams around. If you are trekking with Indiahikes, we’ll be providing you with microspikes and gaiters. We’ll have a technical team that will clear out a route to the summit in heavy snow.

  1. Hi, we are a group of 3 people we were planning to book on dates 24 December we are students(22yrs) and we wanted to know about how to build up our fitness in 1 month
    And can we book for the same dates around 20th December.

    1. Hi Priyanka, Deoriatal is one of the easiest treks out of all our Himalayan treks. You should be able to get fit in a month without issues. If you’re looking to sign up for 24th December, you should do it soon. I don’t think we have too many slots left!

  2. Hi Swathi,

    First of all, I’d like to thank you from the bottom of my heart to see my trek blog live on the page. My trek was absolutely phenomenal in March with the correct mix of rhododendrons and snow ( although it might be a bit risky) , but that’s thrill. Thanks to Kunal for accompanying us all thorough to the peak and all my fellow trekmates!!

    Lastly, hats off to the entire team there at IH for helping us create such unbelievable memories

  3. Hi Swathi,
    I like to join the group on the 24th Nov.
    I am from Sri Lanka. Can you please let me know the best way to get to Haridwar/Rishikesh.
    Thank you

    1. Hi Don, good to see you travelling to the Himalayas all the way from Sri Lanka! 🙂 To get to Haridwar, your best option would be to fly to Delhi and take an overnight train to Haridwar. You could take the Nanda Devi Express (overnight train) or the Shatabdi (day train). I would choose the overnight train if I were you. That’s the fastest, simplest option.

  4. What will be the range of temperatures we will face in March based on the past history?
    We are planning to go in March 2020.

    1. Hi Sachin,

      March is one of the best months to do the Deoriatal-Chandrashila trek. You’ll see rhododendrons in full bloom, and Deoriatal is our best rhododendron trek, hands down. So good choice of a trek! 🙂

      As for the temperatures, during the day, the temperature will be in the range of 10C to 18C degrees. At night you can expect temperatures to fall upto -4C degrees. There will be snow as well. Please carry at least 3 warm layers for this trek.

  5. Hi Swathi,
    What is the temperature and weather condition like in late March and early April ? Is there a lot of snow on the trails during these months ?

    1. Hi Gunjan, March and early April still have snow. The temperature during the day is quite pleasant. You can trek wearing just one jacket. After sundown, it does get cold. Drops to zero as well. You’ll need at least 3 warm layers for any treks in March / April.

  6. Hi Swati, can two nearby located treks be done together, with one or two days break inbetween ? Like chandrashila with brahmatal or may be doing Pangarchulla base(khulara) and than chandrashila in return ? The reason for this is getting chance to leave once in a year, from long distance @1300 km from dehradun.. what your view ? Pl guide

    1. Hi Mallu, it’s not a bad idea to do two treks back to back, as long as you have at least 2 days of rest in between. Kedarkantha and Har Ki Dun are good treks to do back to back. You could also combine Phulara Ridge and Har Ki Dun. They have the same base camp and won’t involve a strenuous travel in between. Even Dayara Bugyal and Mukta Top are good treks to do back to back. Again they both have base camps very close to each other.

      (Deoriatal and Brahmatal are not close to each other and will involve travel from one base to another. If you’re alright with that day’s travel, then you can do these back to back. As for Pangarchulla, we are currently not running it.)

    1. Hi Chandana,
      For Deoriatal Chandrashila, our only pickup point in Haridwar is the Railway station where you’d meet your fellow trekmates. In case you are travelling by bus, I would suggest reaching the city early and making the short commute to the pickup point 🙂

  7. Hi Swathi, I’d like to go on a trek if there are slots available immediately after 27th Nov 2019. I’m a beginner but I’d like to think I’m fit for a moderate to difficult trek. Hope to see some snow and forest trails. Are there any option other than the Chandrashila trek?
    Thanks in Advance,
    Deepak

  8. Hi Swathi,

    Could you pls let me know whether intermittent cellular network in available during the trek? Also, I wear specs so whether is it absolutely necessary to wear clip-on polarizers because I get headaches from them?

    1. Hi Onkar, if there’s snow on the trek, then it’s mandatory to wear sunglasses. If the clip-on polarizers hurt you, you could try some other options from here – https://www.indiahikes.com/sunglasses-spectacles-trekkers/
      Without sunglasses, you could get snow blindness as snow is a very reflective surface, and the sun is harsh at high altitude. So there’s no way out of it.

      As for network, there’s network at a watchtower in Deoriatal. AFter that, you get very intermittent network at Chopta. Not anywhere else on the trek.

    1. Hi Anurag, we have seen that the trail from Chopta to Chandrashila usually get blocked with too much snow in Jan and Feb, which is why we don’t run the trek in these months. We have the Dayara Bugyal and Brahmatal treks running in January though. So you should go for them. You’ll find all our January treks here – https://www.indiahikes.com/month/january

    1. Hi Himanshu, there are quite a few home stays at Sari and Chopta. So you can easily do the trek on your own. You can go there and then book your stay.

  9. Hi, we are planning to do the deoriatal chandrashila trek with a group of six school children who are of 11 to 15 years of ages. Two adults would come along. As we initiated this from our school, it’s taking a while for the parents to consent. Our school vacation starts from Dec 20th. We can start after that. We have come from amalapuram, andhrapradesh. It takes about fourty hours to reach haridwar.
    So what dates could you suggest for us?
    Also what would be the pricing for us?
    Thanks
    Rajesh

    1. Hi Rajesh, it’s wonderful that you’re planning to take students on a trek. Amongst us, we think that’s the best way to spend holidays and to learn from the outdoors at the same time. If you’re planning to go post December 20th, you should be booking your trek right away and planning your travel. We have enough slots available in the December 25-30 batch for your team. All other dates before that have very few slots left, not enough to accommodate your whole team.

      As for the trek fee, we have a discount for groups of 10. If you’re a group of 10, one person can trek for free.
      On the other hand, we have a 50% scholarship available for a maximum of 3 children per batch, for students between the age of 8 and 12.
      As of now, there are no other children in the December 25-30 batch, so three of your students between the age of 8 and 12 will be eligible for this scholarship.

      If you need help, and if you’re more comfortable talking to us on the phone, please give us a call on 080-468-01269. We’ll be available at any time of the day.

  10. Hey Swathi,
    I am a 19 y/o travelling from the South and I have never travelled solo before, do you arrange pick up from any of the Main cities like Bangalore, Pune or Mumbai?
    Travelling solo to Haridwar seems like the only problem.
    Thank you.

    1. Hi Mrunmayee,
      We arrange pickup for Deoriatal from the Haridwar railway station where you’ll also meet your trekmates.
      Our treks have a lot of solo females who travel to the pickup locations on their own. You can check if someone from the batch is travelling from the same region and coordinate with them to travel together 🙂

    1. Hi Ali, Deoriatal-Chandrashila is actually a very good trek for a beginner. It was my first trek too. It has the right amount of adventure and the right amount of rest time. Go ahead and do the trek. Make sure you work on your fitness before heading out 🙂

  11. Is this trek conducted in February?
    We are four planning for this trek at the end of the February. Can we experience snowfall at this time?

    1. Hi Sirshendu, we don’t organise this trek in Jan and FEb because there’s a lot of snow, which usually blocks the trail. The summit becomes inaccessible. The best time to experience winter on this trail would be in December and also the beginning of March. March will have rhododendrons too, if you go around mid-March. I’d highly recommend that experience 🙂 ‘

      This is how the trek will look at that time – https://indiahikes.com/deoriatal-chandrashila-trek-stunning-rhododendrons-from-march-to-april/#gref

  12. As per recent news from Uttarakhand dated September 17, duration of visit of 3-4 days does not require RTPCR test. Do we need to carry certificate as of yet if I book for December?

    1. Hi Purvi, can you share where you read this report? We haven’t read such a report, so it would help. Also, all our treks are 6 days long at least. So trekkers will surely need the RT-PCR test done. It is a lot safer to go ahead with your travel, knowing that you are COVID negative as well.

    1. Hi Rahul, that would be a little too early for this trek. The trails are likely going to be blocked with winter snow. That’s why we have opened up the trek only from MArch 14th. Join us then, it’s a wonderful trek from mid March onwards 🙂

  13. Hi,
    I am planning to sign up for Deoriatal Chandrashila trek primarily to see the Rhododendrons during the suggested March-April (2021) period. I’ll most likely do it in March. What I would like to know which part of March ( beginning, middle or end) has the best view of the Rhododendrons? If it happens to be in April, I’ll go in April then. I have done 3 treks with Indiahikes already, so I have no other queries .
    Thanks,
    Ujjwal Mukherjee

  14. Hi first of all loved this trekk seriously just want to wake up tomorrow seeing that view from top.Just had a question that will be fine that i will come solo for this trek as none of my friends or family members are interested in adventure. Is it easy to gel with people their as they already have their groups

    1. Hi Shyam, lots of trekkers come solo with us. It’s a wonderful experience to meet like minded trekkers and travellers. Most of them go back with really strong bonds with their trek team. So don’t hesitate at all. Just join any team, you’ll have a good trek with great company. 🙂