Chadar Trek: Himalayan Winter Adventure

26 Jan – 03 Feb

Quick Overview

Welcome to the ultimate Himalayan winter expedition!

In this 9-day unique journey, you’ll brave extreme cold temperatures (around -25 to -30 deg.C) and walk on a frozen veil of ice over the Zanskar River, a path locals often refer to as Chadar! One that mirrors the vastness of the mountains, the azure sky above, the calmness, the silence and the overwhelming awe surrounding Ladakh’s remotest region.

With highly experienced local guides and a crew as adventurous as you, get ready to conquer yourself during this exhilarating trek deep into the frozen wilderness, a game of shadows that tests your mind and body, as you trudge under the gaze of towering gorges, past rivers and through the incredible Zanskar Canyon.

The Chadar Trek is truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience, a 9-day ticket to breaking away from life’s monotony and chaos, redefining your limits and finding a new you amidst nature’s greatest and wildest creations.
Trip Dates: 26 Jan - 03 Feb
Dates don't work? Customise your departure.
Availability: Yes, 2 spots left
Category: Adventure Trips Mixed Groups

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Trip Highlight

Meet the real heroes who make this trip every year

The locals of Zanskar do this trek not once, but many times during the winter season! They walk the Chadar multiple times to help us with porterage, their only source of income during the harsh winters. Watch this inspiring video on the Chadar, the frozen world and the Zanskari porters. Video Credits: Akshat Jain

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If you’re someone who is looking for a great and safe experience with a highly experienced and reliable team, then this journey is for you. Carefully crafted with Adventure Sinbad (a leading expert in organizing treks across India and in the Himalayas). Here’s how we do it differently:

  • Group Size: Our groups are small, limited to 10-12 members only. 
  • Experienced Ground Team: We’ve a qualified Trip Leader and we’re one of the few partnering with the local Zanskari Guides and Porters (we even have a Kitchen Team). Plus, we have 3-4 walking guides accompanying the group.
  • Porterage: You can hand over a 15 Kg backpack/duffel bag for carrying throughout the trek, which becomes crucial when you’re going on a challenging winter expedition. 
  • Tents: We provide everything for you : Guest Tents( 2 in each tent), Kitchen Tent, Dining Tent and Toilet Tents 
  • Food: just because we’re braving a harsh winter doesn’t mean we compromise on food. You’ll enjoy great food, with 5 course meals throughout the trek. 
  • Safety: We don’t compromise on quality gear and we’re prepared for all emergencies. A comprehensive First Aid Kit will be carried along. Extra men will be on crew to help in case of any setbacks. 
You’ll be staying for 4 nights at a hotel in Leh and camp for 4 nights in comfortable, well-equipped tents during the trek.
All Meals on the trip starting from breakfast on Day 1 and ending with breakfast on Day 9
Road Transportation: All Transfers as mentioned in the itinerary
Airport Transfers and Sightseeing Transportation
Transfers to and from Trek start/end Points
Experienced Trek Crew: Qualified Trip Leader, Local Guide, Cook, Kitchen Helpers and Porters
Porterage: 15 Kg/person. 1 porter between 2 trekkers
Permits and Taxes
ALTOA Fee and wildlife permits
Personal equipment and sleeping bags
Airfares to and out of Leh
Any additional transport or activities apart from the trip itinerary
Travel Insurance
5% GST
Expenses rising through unforeseen conditions like bad weather, natural calamities, flight cancellations, etc
Rescue and evacuation services
Expenses of any personal nature like phone calls, drinks, cigarettes, souvenirs, laundry, etc.
Tips

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Trip Dates

Start date
26 Jan 2019

Start date
03 Feb 2019

Byond Inclusions

Includes 4-star accommodation, expert guides, unique experiences, private transfers, some meals. Flights are not included.

Land Package Price

Launch

₹ 35,160
30% Off
Sold Out!

Early Bird

₹ 49,500

15% Off

3 spots left

Regular

₹ 57,000

2 people travelling

Zero payment upfront. Zero cancellation fees. Block your discounted spot for 2 weeks while you decide.

Different budgets/dates? Customise this trip

All Inclusions & Exclusions

If you’re someone who is looking for a great and safe experience with a highly experienced and reliable team, then this journey is for you. Carefully crafted with Adventure Sinbad (a leading expert in organizing treks across India and in the Himalayas). Here’s how we do it differently:

  • Group Size: Our groups are small, limited to 10-12 members only. 
  • Experienced Ground Team: We’ve a qualified Trip Leader and we’re one of the few partnering with the local Zanskari Guides and Porters (we even have a Kitchen Team). Plus, we have 3-4 walking guides accompanying the group.
  • Porterage: You can hand over a 15 Kg backpack/duffel bag for carrying throughout the trek, which becomes crucial when you’re going on a challenging winter expedition. 
  • Tents: We provide everything for you : Guest Tents( 2 in each tent), Kitchen Tent, Dining Tent and Toilet Tents 
  • Food: just because we’re braving a harsh winter doesn’t mean we compromise on food. You’ll enjoy great food, with 5 course meals throughout the trek. 
  • Safety: We don’t compromise on quality gear and we’re prepared for all emergencies. A comprehensive First Aid Kit will be carried along. Extra men will be on crew to help in case of any setbacks. 
You’ll be staying for 4 nights at a hotel in Leh and camp for 4 nights in comfortable, well-equipped tents during the trek.
All Meals on the trip starting from breakfast on Day 1 and ending with breakfast on Day 9
Road Transportation: All Transfers as mentioned in the itinerary
Airport Transfers and Sightseeing Transportation
Transfers to and from Trek start/end Points
Experienced Trek Crew: Qualified Trip Leader, Local Guide, Cook, Kitchen Helpers and Porters
Porterage: 15 Kg/person. 1 porter between 2 trekkers
Permits and Taxes
ALTOA Fee and wildlife permits
Personal equipment and sleeping bags
Airfares to and out of Leh
Any additional transport or activities apart from the trip itinerary
Travel Insurance
5% GST
Expenses rising through unforeseen conditions like bad weather, natural calamities, flight cancellations, etc
Rescue and evacuation services
Expenses of any personal nature like phone calls, drinks, cigarettes, souvenirs, laundry, etc.
Tips

Zero payment upfront. Zero cancellation fees. Block your discounted spot for 2 weeks while you decide.

Different budgets/dates? Customise this trip

Day Wise Itinerary

Welcome to Ladakh

Julley!

Arrive at one of the world’s highest and prettiest airports, perched at 3500m. 

Feel the nip in the air hit your face as you step out of the airplane, with the temperature dropping to -13 to -18 deg.C, the beginning of an unforgettable adventure. 

Then: you’ll be picked and transferred to your hotel room in Leh (20 minutes). 

Spend the rest of the day at leisure, acclimatizing to the fresh, unpolluted air. Do note, it’s crucial to be well rested and not exert yourself with any physical activity during the first 2 days before the trek. Keep yourself hydrated throughout.

Rest Day and Acclimatization

Today’s a rest day as you’re still getting used to the height and acclimatizing. Meanwhile, you can explore nearby sights such as the Shey Palace and Thiksey Monastery. 

The former summer capital of Ladakh, Shey is mostly in ruins now, but was once used as a retreat by Kings in Ladakh. 
Thiksey Monastery houses the huge Chamba (Maitreya)Buddha statue. It is a 2 floor statue and one of the most beautiful and serene statues of the Maitreya around the World.

You can also get your last minute shopping for the trek done at the Leh market.

The Chadar Trek Begins

Get ready for an exhilarating day - it’s time to walk on a frozen river! 

Indulge in an early breakfast and drive for about 3 hours till you reach Shingrak Yogma, a little further to Tilat Sumdo. This is where the Chadar trek begins. Every year the roadhead here extends a little because of the ongoing construction work, thereby reducing the distance walked on the Chadar.

We meet our porters and help them in loading our bags and luggage up the sledges. From here, we head straight to the ice. Frozen waterfalls and mirror-like glassy ice under your feet, with snow around you for as far as you can see- this is an experience that will stay etched in your memory for years to come. 

Get your first feel of the slippery surface and practice the penguin gait, a style of walking that is required for this trail.  Keep walking this way and you’ll soon reach Shingrak Gongma, our first campsite. 

As this is the largest camping site on Chadar and hosts many trekkers and adventure groups, here’s your chance at meeting new people and share interesting stories over cups of hot tea and soup.

Hike to Dib Yongma(6 hrs)

You can expect a long, but not very tiring walk here depending on the weather conditions. 

En route, a little ahead of Shingrak, you’ll pass through another campsite, Tsomo which is usually frequented by a lot of trekkers. A little farther away, you’ll find a waterfall which never freezes even in severe climatic conditions. The water streams and the spectacular scenery that unfolds in front of you every hour will leave you awestruck.. Be prepared for a game of shadow play as you walk under towering mountains, over rocks and clamber your way on the gorge walls if the ice conditions are not stable.

Once you reach your campsite at Dib Yongma, you’ll see tents set up on both sides of the river.

Nyerak Village (6 hrs) + Frozen Waterfall

We have a long and exciting day ahead! 

Start the day early and head to our next campsite at Nyerak Pulu. Behold and see the famous frozen waterfall of Nyerak and the golden bridge, located a little below Nyerak that connects it to Lingshed Village. 

Nyerak, is an extremely remote village in Zanskar Valley and is uniquely situated almost midway through the magnificent Zanskar Gorge. 

To your surprise, you’ll see a few toilets and shelters with tea-stalls built by the locals here at the campsite for trekkers.

Nyerak is known for its late camp-keeper Meme Bullu (‘meme’ in Ladakhi would mean ‘a very old man’) who passed away in 2015.

This old man was the dear companion to a lot of rafting enthusiasts in summers and Chadar trekkers in winters who set up camp for a night at this point. The campsite has a beautiful setting with imposing mountains right ahead and a wide view of the frozen Zanskar from a vantage point a little above. A great place to walk around and take in the sights esp during sunset and sunrise. Also an awesome place for star gazing if you can brave the minus temperatures.

Push yourself to reach Tsomo (6 -7 hrs)

As you are now used to walking 6 hours each day, we step up our pace and walk a little longer up to Tsomo camp. We reach Dib Yongma by lunch and then proceed further to Tsomo campsite which is approximately 4 hours from Dib Yongma. 

Here, we set up tents while our porters camp inside the humongous Tsomo Cave. The caves are homes to Zanskari locals and trekking porters who journey across the frozen river every winter!

Trek to Shingrak Yongma (6 hrs)

We take a short trek to the roadhead (approx. 3- 4 hours) and hop on to our cars and drive to Leh. 

Once in the hotel, your day is at leisure. You can take your first hot shower after so many days in the cold!  Or simply snuggle into your cosy bed and relax, after all the adventure.

Buffer Day

This remains as a buffer day in case we face any road blocks or weather difficulties in navigating our way during the course of the trek.

Note: If no major exigencies are faced and the buffer day is not used, you get an extra day in Leh. Go on a day trip to Pangong or spend time shopping for souvenirs for your loved ones back home. Or you can even try the new winter restaurants that have come up here!

Time To Head Home

After an early breakfast, we drive you to the airport for your onward flight, satisfied with completing this challenging trek and wanting more of the Himalayas. Time to say goodbye (for now) and Julley to Ladakh!

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