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Bhrigu Lake Trek - 4 Days

Bhrigu Lake Trek
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Bhrigu Lake is a lake located at an elevation of around 4,300 metres (14,100 ft) in Kullu district, Himachal Pradesh, India. It is located to the east of Rohtang Pass and is around 6 kilometres (3.7 mi) from Gulaba village. It can be reached by trekking either from the Vashishth temple, which is famous for its hot water springs, which is close to the town of Manali or from Gulaba village. Actually there is no settlement in Gulaba and is actually an area of the Pir Panjal mountain range. It is named after Maharishi Bhrigu.

Bhrigu Lake in Month of July and Aug.

This easily accessible trek route in the upper Kullu valley and lying east of the famous Rohtang pass offers almost everything which a beginner or an experienced hiker can think of. The trail goes though virgin forests, and lush green meadows, Birds eye views of the surrounding valleys like upper Kullu, Solang and Rohtang are trekkers delight. Snow clad peaks and ranges of Dhauladhar and Pir Panjal are captivating. Hanuman Tibba, Ladakhi, Shetidhar, Friendship, Gyapancho and Chandrabhaga (CB) range, all can be seen in one stretch. The lake itself derived its name from the peak called Bhrigu.

Rola Kholi Campsite

The legend is that, Maharishi (Saint) Bhrigu of Saptarishi fame had meditated on bank of this secluded and pristine lake lying at ~4270m/14000ft above sea level. The shallow lake remains frozen for more than half of the year.Even in summer the approach is filled with the fun of walking on snow. Campsites provide overwhelming feeling of wonder and admiration. The nature is bountiful with her gift of wildlife. This round trek’s start and end point, the village of Vashisht ( Another Rishi of Saptarishi fame extolled here ) has surprises in many folds. A Neatly carved wooden temple, hot spring, surrounding waterfalls, village home-stays, availability of world cuisines make it a compelling destination for newbie hikers.

Bhrigu Lake in Month of May

Best Season to visit

Starting from Mid May, till the month of October, trekking to Bhrigu Lake is absolutely allowed and travelers can plan accordingly. However the ideal time is before the month of June and after August since this is the monsoon time and there remains the probability of landslides in the region. It must also be noted that the temperature of this place during summers hovers around 20-25C in the daytime and falls to 5-7C at night. In winter the temperature gets lower with 10-15C around daytime and nearly 0 to -7C at night. Almost half a year the lake remains frozen, and travelers can enjoy the sight of snow even during the early summer time.

Day 1
Arrive in Manali. Drive to Gulaba (22Kms). Trek to Gulaba Campsite (10,300 ft)

Day 2
Trek from Gulaba (10,300 ft) to Rola Kholi (12,500 ft) (6-7 km / 4-5 hrs)

Day 3
Trek from Rola Khuli (12,500 ft) to Bhrigu Lake (14,000 ft) and back to Rola Khuli (12-14 km / 6-7 hrs)

Day 4
Return Trek from Rola Khuli (12,500 ft) to Gulaba (10,300 ft)And Drive to Manali (6-7 km / 4-5 hrs)

Day 1:  Arrive in Manali. Drive to Gulaba . Trek to Gulaba Campsite 

  • Drive:  22-25 km
  • Altitude: 10,300 ft
  • Time taken:  1 hour drive + 1 hour trek. Pick up from Manali at 12.00 PM
  • Stay: Overnight stay in tents

Gulaba

Report in Manali by 12:00 PM at Main govt. bus stand. Drive from Manali to Gulaba takes close to one hour. However the road can be crowded on weekends as the same road is taken by tourists heading to Rohtang Pass. A short trek of about  an hour brings us to our camping site for the day.

Gulaba Campsite

Day 2: Trek from Gulaba (10,300 ft) to Rola Kholi (12,500 ft)

  • Altitude: 12,500 ft
  • Trek: 6-7 Km / 4-5 Hrs
  • Trek gradient: Easy
  • Water sources: Carry sufficient water from Gulaba as there are very limited/No source (depending on the season)
  • Stay:  Overnight stay in tents

Morning View from Gulaba Campsite

In the morning we hike to the Kothi Peak for the 360 degree view of the surrounding valleys and the great Himalayan range including the peaks like Hanuman Tibba, Deo Tibba, Indrasan, Friendship peak, Sheti Dhar, Ghepan Goh and others.  From the top we get the clear view of Rohtang Pass area, Solang valley and the Pir Panjal range. The climb will take 5 hours. Then we descent halfway and take the trail to our camping ground at Raulikhoi (~3830m/12500ft).  Rola Kholi is a scenic campsite covered from 3 sides with mountains which gives excellent protection from winds. It is an ideal camping spot where the water source is flowing across the camping ground. We camp for the night.

Top View of Rola Kholi Campsites

Day 3: Trek from Rola Kholi (12,500 ft) to Bhrigu Lake (14,000 ft) and back to Rola Khuli.

  • Altitude: 14,000 ft
  • Trek: 12-14 Km / 6-7 Hrs
  • Trek gradient: Easy to Moderate
  • Water sources: Carry 2 lts water from Rola Kholi as there are streams along the way.
  • Stay:  Overnight stay in tents

Starting early in the morning is advisable as the approach to bhrigu lake is steep & trek is long. You have to trek a height of around 1,500 ft to reach Bhrigu Lake. You begin with hiking to the first ridge, which is an hour away. In June, the trail is usually covered in snow. In July, as the snow melts on the lower reaches, you see the trail slowly turning from green to brown and white. As you reach the ridge, look for an oval glacial lake in the distance. Depending on the season, the lake is either surrounded by snow or fresh grass, along with alpine flowers.

 

Bhrigu Lake in Month of June

On a clear day, you can catch a stunning panoramic view of Pir Pinjal and Dhauladhar ranges. Also, major peaks such as Indrasen, Deo Tibba and Hanuman Tibba stand majestically before you. The lake is normally enveloped in fog which can make finding the route tricky. It is always advisable to hire a local guide. After spending time at the lake, retrace your way to Rola Khuli.

Day 4: Return Trek from Rola Khuli (12,500 ft) to Gulaba (10,300 ft) And Drive to Manali.

  • Altitude: 10,300 ft
  • Trek: 6-7 Km / 4-5 Hrs
  • Trek gradient: Easy (Mostly descending)
  • Drive:  22-25 km
  • Time taken:  4-5 hour Trek + 1 hour drive. Reach Manali around 2-4 PM
  • Water sources: Carry 2 lts water from Rola Kholi as there are streams along the way.

Today’s trek is an easy one. You get back to Gulaba through the meadows you came up from. The descent can be  a bit steep but is good on your legs given you are always in the meadows. It takes 3-4 hours to reach Gulaba. Gulaba at around 10,300 ft is a better exit for your knees and feet as compared to Vasisht at 7,000 ft. Be driven back to Manali and unwind in guest house for the night.

On Day 4, you’ll reach Manali between 2 pm to 4 pm. You can book your travel any time after 6 pm.

The Trip Cost Includes

  • Food all along the Trek(Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner and a cup of coffee or tea)
  • Car pick up and drop from Manali to Manali.
  • Food as per menu on the trek
  • Forest Permits/Camping Charges , if any
  • Tents, Sleeping bags, mats,Technical equipment
  • Safety Equipments.
  • First Aid Medical Kit(Your Trek Leader will carry the Medical Kit but we also advise to bring yourself for your own use, as far as possible)
  • Trek guide, cook, helpers, porters & mules for carrying common luggage.
  • Services of a Mountaineering qualified & professional Trek Leader.

The Trip Cost Excludes

  • Hotel Stay in Manali.
  • Meals during road Journeys.
  • Porter/Mull to carry personal luggage.
  • Insurance.
  • Any expense of personal nature.
  • Any expense not specified in the inclusion list.

Trekking Gear

  • A rucksack with rain cover
  • A water bottle or a hydration pack
  • A Hand/Head Torch with spare batteries
  • UV Protection Sunglasses
  • A trekking pole

Clothing:

Since it is a high altitude trek, at least 3 layers of clothing is mandatory. A full sleeve shirt, a fleece jacket, and a padded jacket are imperative. An additional layer (Thermal bodywarmers) for the evenings in the high altitude campsites are strongly recommended

  • Quick Dry Warm lower or Track Pants - 2
  • Full sleeves T-shirts - 2
  • Thermal Bodywarmer Upper & Lower - 1
  • Fleece Jacket - 1
  • Padded Jacket -1 (Goose down or feather is preferable)
  • Full sleeves sweater - 1 (Needed if you feel cold at high altitudes despite 4 layers)
  • Rainwear (Jacket & Pants) - 1
  • Thick woolen socks -  1 pair
  • Cotton socks - at least 2-3 pairs
  • Undergarments - 1 for every day of trekking
  • Pair of Warm Gloves - 1
  • Woolen cap - 1

Footwear

  • Hiking shoes (Preferably ankle high) -1
  • Pair of lightweight Slipper/Sandals - 1 pair.

Toiletries

    • Sunscreen lotion, lip balm, toothbrush, toothpaste, hand sanitizer, toilet roll, cold cream, small towel.
    • Anti-fungal cream: Carry an antifungal cream if you are sensitive to sweating and prone to skin irritations around genitals or groin area due to lack of bathing.
    • For women:
      • Tampons or sanitary napkins,
      • 2-3 zip pouches to dispose off non-biodegradable waste
      • Vaginal wash to avoid any irritation due to lack of bathing.

Miscellaneous

    • Water bottle
    • Camera (optional)
    • Personal medicine kit. Though our trek leaders carry a fully equipped first-aid kit, make sure you consult your doctor before the trek in case you have any special ailment.
    • Dry fruits, energy bars

The Bhrigu Lake trek is classified as a trek of Easy to moderate grade. You start from an altitude of 8,530 ft at Gulaba and you reach a highest point of 14,009 ft at the lake. This means you gain around 5,480 ft over just two days of trekking. You have to make sure your lungs are strong for this.

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. On your trek, it is important that you arrive on the slopes with your muscles relaxed. Carrying a backpack, however light, can become a strain after a while. These exercises will help you to be in good shape before the trek.

Breathing exercises

If you’re trekking to Bhrigu Lake trek, note that the temperature drops to around -3 to 5 degree Celcius at night. During the day, the temperature will be at around 10 to 12 degrees. This extreme temperature could make breathing slightly difficult. Doing breathing exercises before the trek will help. Expand your lungs and learn to breathe deep. This will help you inhale more oxygen and help you breathe comfortably.

Fitness exercises

  • Jog/Run for 5 Kms in 25-30 mins or Walk continuously for 10 km (with 3-4 small breaks) on plain terrain (slight incline is better)
  • Hold your breath for 40 seconds
  • 3 sets of Climbing 30 – 40 steps in one stretch
  • Push Ups – 10
  • Lunges & Squats – 15 X 2 sets

Monitoring health on a trek

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

On the trek, your Trek Leader will be monitoring two aspects a day.

  • Oxygen Level
  • Pulse Rate 

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, DexamethasoneYour Trek Leader will also be carrying a portable oxygen cylinder throughout the trek. In addition to that, there are oxygen cylinders installed at all high campsites for any emergency situations.

Acclimatisation in high  altitude

This is one of the most important aspects of travelling in the high Himalayas and cannot be ignored or set aside. Acclimatisation basically means our body adjusting to lower levels of oxygen (rarefied air) & reduced air pressure as me move up. In case one does not acclimatise properly there are chances of the person facing extreme discomfort and this can be fatal in extreme cases. While there is no set route to getting properly acclimatised there are a general precautions and steps that one can take to initiate good acclimatisation.

The start point for the trek in Gulaba which lies on the way to Rohtang Pass. The only way to reach Gulaba is by hiring a shared jeep or a taxi.

Manali is well connected to Delhi with through road and air. There are no direct trains from Delhi though.

By Road

The road distance from Delhi to Manali is 536 km. There are overnight HPRTC buses and Volvos available from ISBT Kashmere Gate, Delhi for Manali. It is a 14-hour journey by bus. You can book your bus tickets online through hrtchp.com or any other bus services available. You can also hire a private taxi or an outstation cab from Delhi.

By Rail

To reach by train, take a direct train from Delhi to Pathankot. Some of the trains that run on this route are Delhi-Pathankot Express, Jammu Tawi Express, Delhi-Dhauladhar Express. You can then take a bus from Pathankot to Manali. Or you can take a connecting train from Pathankot to Joginder Nagar which is the nearest station to Manali. There are buses running frequently between Joginder Nagar and Manali.

By Air

The nearest airport is Bhuntar Airport which is located 50 km from Manali. There are taxis available at the airport which will take you to Manali. You can also take local buses that keep running from Bhuntar to Manali at a very regular frequency. Buses are decent and very cheap compared to a taxi that can cost you around INR 2000 to 2500 depending upon the season.

Nearby attraction

Manali is the gateway to Solang Valley where you can participate in adventure activities like paragliding, and zorbing in the summer months when the snow melts. This famous tourist hill station has so many places to visit in Manali. Visit the ancient Hadimba Devi Temple which has an interesting mythological tale associated with it. Walk through the charming lanes of Old Manali. Visit the bazaar to buy some souvenirs. Jogini Fall and Vashisht Temple are other famous attractions in Manali. You can also visit Rohtang pass while you are in Manali.

Cellular Connectivity

One can expect cellular connectivity till Gulaba and few kilometers ahead of Gulaba. There might be no signals available by the time you reach Rola Khuli.

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FAQS

What is the Brighu Lake Trek?

Brighu Lake Trek is a easy-moderate high altitude trek done primarily during the pre-monsoon and post monsoon. The trek is situated in the Kullu district of Himachal Pradesh.

What is the best time to do this trek?

June to September are the best months for the Bhrigu Lake trek

What will the temperatures be like June, July and September?

Bhrigu Lake is at an altitude of 14,009 ft. At altitudes as high as these, temperatures go up to 18°C during the day and might fall to -1 to -2°C in the night.

How much we have to trek each day?

Normally our trek are designed in such a way that we reach our camp by lunch time and on an average trekking distance is roughly 6-9 Kms each day and it takes around 6-7 hours by an average trekker to cover that distance.

When will there be snow on this trek?

You are likely to find snow on this trek in May to June. However, this depends on the amount of snowfall that happens in the preceding winter.

What will we do if it rains?

If it starts raining while you’re trekking, we will continue on the trail as planned. Your poncho should protect you from the rain. Carry a backpack cover for extra protection from rain for your belongings. When it rains at the campsite, we usually get together in the dining tent and play games. The tents that you will be staying in, the dining tent, kitchen and toilet tents are all water proof, so you will stay dry inside.

At what time should we reach Manali?

We will arrange for pick up from Manali by 1.00 PM. Be sure to reach Manali latest by 12.00 PM. Gulaba, 22 km from Manali, is your first halt. The drive takes about an hour and your campsite is a short trek from the point where you get dropped off by the vehicle.

When will we get back to Manali on the fourth day of the trek?

On Day 4, you will trek a distance of 5 km from Rola Khuli to Gulaba. This should take 3-4 hours. Gulaba to Manali is an hour’s drive and you are expected to reach Manali around 2 to 3 PM. Buses back to Delhi from Manali are between 4.00 and 5.00 PM. You can either take one of these or stay over at Manali for the night and leave the next day.

Is Diamox advisable ?

Diamox help in acclimatization but we do not advise it. Please consult your Doctor before taking it.

Who will lead and who all will go along with us ?

All our treks are led by certified & Experienced Trek Leaders/Guides. We believe in sustainable adventure eco-tourism which in effect means that our teams are locally sourced. Other than a Trek lead we in our team will have local Guides, Cook, Helpers and Porters.

How big are the trekking groups ?

We make it a point not to have more than 15 people in a trekking group as we believe that the best way to enjoy adventure is in small sustainable groups.

Can I offload my backpack on a mule/porter. What are the charges for the same.

When you are in the mountains you should be self-sufficient and you should carry your own backpack. The charges to offload a backpack of roughly 9 kg or less is about 300 per day.

Can you customize a Brighu Lake Trek?

Yes Brighu Lake Trek can be customised, if you would like to travel independently, you are invited to choose any of the trips at your convenient time for any number of people. The Cost for private customized trip is fixed on the basis of group size, trek area, duration and trek style.

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Price From INR7,200 INR6,500/person
6,500
Total 6,500 INR

Trip Facts

  • Himachal Pradesh
  • 4 days
  • Easy To Moderate
  • 14,000 Ft
  • Day time: 13°C-18°C; Night time: 0°C-7°C
  • 25-30 Kms
  • May to October
  • 10-15 trekkers
  • Manali to Manali
  • Chandigarh or Manali is well connected to Delhi
  • Delhi, Chandigarh, Kullu airport at Bhuntar
  • Meals while on trek (Veg + Egg)
  • Camping

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