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Manali-Dharamsala over Kalihani pass


Manali-Dharamsala over Kalihani pass

Trek Type: Moderate to strenuous

The snowcapped ranges of Pir Panjal and Dhauladhar – common factor between beautiful valleys of Kullu and Kangra, is filled with snow bound passes, glaciers, dense coniferous forests, sparkling streams, cascading waterfalls, blue lakes, meadows strewn with amazing variety of wild alpine flowers and unbelievably remote tribal villages. The fauna here ranges from Himalayan Brown Bear to the elusive Musk Deer and includes a spectacular bird life.

Trek starts from famous tourist town of Manali in Kullu valley, and takes you over mighty mountain passes of Kalihani and Thamsar, through ancient, remote and isolated Village of Bara Bhangal inhabited by legendry Himalayan Shepherds (the Gaddhi’s) who lead a nomadic life. In the summer they lead their vast flocks of sheep and goats to the high mountains and return back to their isolated existence in the autumn. The trek ends at Bir Billing, a tiny village with an extensive view of the lush green Kangra Valley, from here we drive to Dharamsala.


Day 1: Manali

Arrival in Manali. Transfer to Hotel. Spend few hours walking around the town to acclimatize yourself to the surroundings. Visit famous Hadimba temple and walk to interesting Old Manali. O/n Hotel.

Day 2: Manali (1950 mts) – Lamadug (2600 mts), 5 hours

Drive up to Log Huts area of Manali town. Trek begins with a gentle upward slope leading towards Lamadug. This hike of about 5 hours takes you through thick cedar & fir forest which starts clearing up as you keep on following the path which takes you to Lamadug. Excellent views of snowcapped peaks surrounding the upper Kullu valley are obtained, Indrasan (6,220m.) and Deo Tibba (6,001m.) peaks provide a stunning overlook. Overnight camp.

Day 3: Lamadung-Riyali Thach, 6 hours

This walk of about 6 hours is a gradual climb towards the ridge below Thanpari Tibba (4,000m) unleashing lovely aerial view of Manali town down below. Keep moving up till tiny Ranisui Lake for a short break. Follow the trail to reach the campsite at Riyali thach. O/n Camp.

Day 4: Riyali - Shangor (3,800m.), 5 hours

Easy 5 hours walk from Riyali takes you through meadows and alpine shrubs and cross over glacial fed stream, once well above tree line you are greeted with wonderful view of vast expanse of Kullu valley. Reach campsite at Shangor by late afternoon. O/n camp.

Day 5: Shangor - Dhanko thach over KALIHANI PASS (4,640 meters.), 6 – 7 hours

Slow and steady climb of about 3 hours on a rocky path and along a glacier takes you to the foot of the pass. Eventually walk over snow and glacier to reach Kalihani, Standing atop Kalihani pass (4,640m), admire breathtakingly views of peaks of different Himalayan ranges, Dhauladhar, Pir Panjal and of greater Himalayas. Cross the pass, and descend carefully along glacier and glacial fed numerous rivulets and streams to reach the beautiful campsite of Dhan ko thach at about 4100 mts, in about 2 hours.

Day 6: Dhan ko Thach - Lambaparh (3,150 meters.), 6 hours

Gradual descent into the valley for about 2 hours. Cross Kalihani stream by bridge, then follow the track along the stream. Another 4 hours to camp by the stream at Lambaparh which is a long green pasture.

Day 7: Lambaparh - Suni Gote (3,000 meters.), 5 hours

From the camp follow the trail on the right side of Kalihani stream, easy waking but one has to walk over boulders and occasionally on snow and ice patches. You’ll cross number of shepherd camps before reaching campsite at Suni gote.

Day 8: Suni Gote - BARA BANGAHAL (2,540 meters.), 12 Kms (5 hours)

A good route again on right bank to Bara Bangahal village. Bara Bangahal is a mid-point of the trek, a village enclosed by the mountains. Gradual walk down in beautiful surroundings, before Bara Bangahal cross a bridge over Ravi River. Finally reach the tribal village of Bara Bangahal inhabited by GADDIS (Shepherds). The Bara Bhangal area is devoid of any road connectivity. The only way to get to this place is on foot. A significant number of local folks have never put their foot in the outside world. Camp overnight in the village.

Day 9: Bangahal - Marhu (3,850 meters.) Base of THAMSAR PASS, 6-7 hours

Gentle climbing after crossing a bridge near Bara Bangahal. After 2 hours walking through the forest, arrive at the beautiful meadows at the base of Thamsar pass. Camp at Marhu.

Day 10: Base camp - THAMSAR PASS (4,700 meters.) – Panihartu (3,600 M), 14 Km. (5-6 hours)

A little steep, not difficult but slow climb through snow leads to the Thamsar pass, obtain superb view of the high Himalayan peaks and the Ravi valley down below. Another 3 hours to negotiate through patches of glacier and moraines to go down to the next camping place. After descending 5 kms arrive at Panihartu campsite.

Day 11: Panihartu - Rajgunda (2640 meters.), 16 Km (6 hours)

From the camp follow the left bank of Uhl stream for an hour. Then walk through forest and cross bridge near Palachak Deota. Now follow the right side of Uhl, untill you arrive at Rajgunda.

Day 12: Rajgunda - Billing (2350 meters.) and Drive to Dharamsala

Gradual walking down through forest, Billing is the famous for international Gliding sports. 4 hours walking downwards by following a dry stream. Good view all around.

End of trek

Drive through Bir which is inhabited by large number of Tibetan settlements in India, it has a beautiful monastery. Visit Rock temple of Baijnath and Palampur tea gardens en route Dharamsala. Overnight hotel at Dharamsala.

Day 13: Relaxing day at Dharamsala

Whole day to relax in Mcleodgunj. Since 1960, when it became a temporary headquarter of HIS HOLINESS THE DALAI LAMA. Dharamsala has risen to international fame as the little Lhasa in India. Visit the Monastery and explore local market in the evening. O/n Hotel.

Day 14: Dharamsala - New Delhi

Relaxed morning followed by visit to Norbulingka institute of Tibetan Arts in downtown Dharamsala. Board Volvo bus in the evening to Delhi or hire cab for onward/ return journey.

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