Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Popular Mountain Passes in the Indian Himalayan Region

The great Indian Himalayan range which dominates the skyline is a marvel of human civilization and a treat to anyone’s eyes. Often many people driven by the desire to conquer the lofty heights of the Himalayan range embark on a trekking tour to the Himalayan ranges, but for lack of proper information regarding the task… only a few among them can achieve. 

It is obvious that trekking in the Indian Himalayan region often enlightens us and fills us with with vigour and zeal but still for some it remains unattainable pipe dream. But the excitement often pulls them to trace the trailing tracks to some easy treks during the peak season.

A perfect trekking expedition in the Indian Himalayan region can be successful only if the route is hurdle free. Well… don’t always expect it to be hurdle free as after reaching a certain altitude you will have to encounter boulder ridden tracks, narrow ridges, moraines and sometimes blizzards. That turns more adventurous. To snake through a mountain we often choose the shortest route to pass and hence it is called a mountain pass. These mountain passes make way through the mountain gap, saddle or col. The passes always offer a rough track making the journey strenuous and dangerous. So… here we come across a list of some of the explored and least explored Indian mountain passes… and I’m talking about those 5thousanders that often attract explorers from all over the world.

The Borasu pass


Uttarakhand has always remained the heart of adventure activities in India. This state holds the Borasu pass, which is considered one of the most popular and best trekking mountain passes in India, at an altitude of 5,450 meters above sea level in the Garhwal vista. Basically it consist of two routes one from Osla via Manandi tal and second one from Sankri covering Seema , Har-ki-Dun valley. It consumes around 7 to 14 days to final destination that ends at Chitkul, Himachal Pradesh.

Dhamdhar kandi pass

If Borasu pass of Gharwal region of Uttarakhand is the best mountain pass for trekking, then the majestic Dhumdhar Kandi pass is considered as one of the challenging treks in the Garhwal region. This pass consists of many topography disorders. This trek starts from Jhala and then following a steep section which runs along the Sian Gaad River to Durai Gaad. This pass is located at 5,300 meters above sea level. The highest point of the pass offers us the panoramic view of the Gangotri mountain ranges and Banderpoonch glacier.

Parang La


At an altitude of 5,500 meters, Parang La, best known for connecting Himachal Pradesh with Leh Ladakh, offers a thrilling trek during the peak summer days in India. It consumes around 10-12 days to complete the trail, which leads off at Karzok via Tso Moriri. Atop the pass one can capture the view of Changthang valley and glimpse of Spiti valley.

Karakoram pass


The silk route of India famous worldwide is located at an elevation of 5,540 meters. This pass has been always remarked as one of the most difficult mountain pass of India. One can find the truth behind its trekking difficulty through the view of scattered skeletons and skulls all over. Apart from the negative aspect, one of the most significant parts of this pass is the prominent trade facility offered to the traders of India and the neighboring country, China. The trekking trails from Sasoma then leads to Tulumputi La and Jhingmoche after the hard rough climb.

Saser La


When India has got silk routes it has got pass of Golden sands as well. Set at an elevation of 5,540 meters Saser La is an ancient summer caravan route from Leh in Ladakh to Yarkand in the Tarim Basin. The trek begins from Nubra valley in Ladakh via Sasoma and stretches for approximately 14 – 15 days. The trekking route is same as of the Karakoram pass.

Phirtse La


Ladakh… as we all know that it is an abode of high mountain passes and with another pass called the Phirtse La, at an altitude of 5,450 meters, the region boost the mind of adventurers from all over the world. The actual trek begins from Darcha village, which is an ideal place for camping and then continues the expedition through Baralacha La, Phirtse La and Padum valley…..gosh the passes gives me a feel of Chinese accent.

Kalindikhal Pass


At an elevation of 5,947 meters, Kalindikhal Pass is the highest trekkable mountain passes in India and the trek commences from Gangotri – Chirbasa – Bhojwassa and moves through the meadows of Tapovan and Nandanvan followed by Khara Pathar, Sweta Glacier and Kalindi Bhamak. The Kalindikhal Pass Trek is one of the difficult treks in the Garhwal region… not because of the altitude but for the fatal risk covering throughout the trek. The journey, after crossing Nandanvan becomes strenuous as it turns and climbs up to the deadly glaciated tracks.

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