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Har Ki Doon Trek - 7 Days

Har Ki Doon Trek
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The Har Ki Dun Trek (Valley of Gods)  offers an individual an outstanding view that provides a variety of nature’s gifts. Ranging from lush greens and alpine meadows to snow infested peaks with various streams finding their way down the valley. Known to locals as the ‘Valley of Gods’, a lot can be seen and experienced in the Har Ki Dun trek. With riveting views of glaciers, Har Ki Dun valley is a historically important site and has deep roots in Hindu mythology with a presence in the well known Mahabharata. The trek into Har Ki Dun offers a very wide range of accomplishments and experiences that can enamor a participant with mesmerizing picture perfect views while having a formidable high altitude journey!

Har ki Dun, which means Valley of Gods, is situated deep inside Govind Pashu National park in North-Western Uttarakhand. Rich in flora and fauna, the trails are quite often covered in different shades of orchids and other wild flowers. In 1937, Doon school master Jack Gibson along with Tenzing Norgay and his colleague John Martyn climbed Bandarpunch. Jack Gibson made several expeditions in the region and trained young Indian mountaineers. This made the flora, fauna and Garhwali culture of Har ki Dun region known to the outside world.

The path winds up alongside the Tons river from Netwar village. The trek is along the Supin river through the scenic Garhwali villages of Taluka, Gangad and Osla. Har ki dun has numerous camping places and one Forest Guest House.

From Har ki Dun one can see the entire North Face of Swargarohini I (6,252 m) peak. This face drops to about 2,000 m in less than 2 km distance and is yet to be climbed. The legends associated with it say that Swargarohini is the path to heaven that was followed by Pandavas of the epic Mahabharata. Though, the same story is also associated with the Swargarohini steps seen from Satopanth Lake, which lies ahead of Badrinath.

Best Time to Visit Har Ki Dun

Summer (April to June) & Post Monsoon (September to December) is an ideal time to do this trek. If you are interested in snow trekking then the best time to visit is winters. Climatic conditions in the high altitudes vary from the plains; take adequate time to get acclimatized to high altitudes.

In Summer:You can expect pleasing weather during the summer season. Usually, there is no fog and sky remains clear most of the time. If you are planning a trek in summer season then don't forget to carry light woolen clothes as temperature remains low during the night.

Sankri: 5°C
Seema: 1 to 2°C
Har Ki Dun: (-1° C) to -2°C

In Monsoon:During the monsoon, the trekking trails remain more prone to landslide. Roads remain blocked, but the scenic beauty is worth all the risk.

In Winter:Serenity and solitude are at its best during winters at Har Ki Dun Valley. The region is blessed with snowfall during winters and the accommodation options also few. If travelling during the winter season then don't forget to carry warm clothes, jackets, raincoats, fleece jackets and thermals.

Sankri: (-1) °C
Seema: (-3) °C
Har Ki Dun: (-15) °C to (-10) °C

Day 1
Dehradun to Sankri (220Kms/ 10 hrs drive approx)

Day 2
Sankri to Taluka (12 kms/ 1hrs drive) Taluka to Pauni Garaat (10 Kms/ 7 hrs Trek)

Day 3
Pauni Garaat to Kalkattiyadhaar (7 kms/ 6 hrs trek)

Day 4
Kalkattiyadhar to Har Ki Dun & back to Kalkattiyadhar (10 kms/ 9 hrs trek)

Day 5
Kalkattiyadhar to Pauni Garaat via Osla (7 Kms/ 5 hrs trek)

Day 6
Pauni Garaat to Taluka (10 Kms/ 5hrs trek) Taluka to Sankri (12 kms/ 1hrs drive)

Day 7
Sankri to Dehradun (220kms/ 10 hrs drive approx)

Day 1 - Dehradun to Sankri

  • Altitude:  1,950m/6,400ft.
  • Drive:  10 hours, 220 km.
  • Time taken:  Expected arrival time at Sankri – 5:00 pm
  • Stay: Check in local Guest House Stay.

Arrive at Dehradun Railway Station between 6am to 7am. You will be greeted by the authorised person of company at Dehradun Railway station and by taxi you will move towads Sankri .The journey from Dehradun to Sankri takes aroun 10-11 hours . We will drive to Sankri, via Mussoorie, alongside the Yamuna and Tons rivers. The drive also passes by beautiful pine forests. On reaching Sankri, we will explore the scenic hamlet to prepare for the trek that lies ahead and overnight stay at Sankri.

Day 2 - Sankri to Pauni Garaat via Taluka

  • Altitude:  8,200ft
  • Drive: Sankri to Taluka (Drive 12 km) (1 hour)
  • Trek: 10-12 km
  • Trek gradient: Easy
  • Water sources:You can refill your water bottles in the river along the trail.
  • Stay: Overnight stay in tents.

The day starts with drive to Taluka from where the actual Trek starts. Drive from Sankri to Taluka is very exciting. An adventuorous Taluka is a very small village with contrasting architecture Start trekking towards Puani Garaat/Osla descending to the river valley of Supin Along the way you will cross the Siyangarh cemented bridge to reach Dhamtir village having a magnificent views of lush green meadows,vegetation,orchids etc…You will reach Puani Garaat/Osla between 5pm to 6pm. Enjoy hot freshly cooked snacks and dinner before going to sleep in the tents.

Day 3 - Pauni Garaat to Kalkattiyadhaar

  • Altitude:  9,800ft
  • Trek: 8 km / 5-6 Hrs
  • Trek gradient: Easy
  • Water sources: You can refill your water bottles in the river along the trail.
  • Stay: Overnight stay in tents.

Today we resume our trek for the day after having our breakfast. Starting from Chillurgad, we walk towards Seema. Its about 1.5 kilometers to Seema and on the entire distance, the village of Osla hovers over you throughout. On Seema, we take some rest as we get set to finally do some climbing on the trek and reach Osla. We leave the route towards Devsu Thatch and Bali Pass, Ruinsara Lake and cross the bridge over Supin river to climb to Osla.

We do not enter Osla and keep it for the return trek. We gain quite some height with this climb and the the trail again gentles up climbing graually. The trail ahead is one of the most picturesque one as it swirls across climbing gently while both the side is a rich pasture land. The shine on the local organic crop talks a lot about how hard working the local villagers are.. Walking further, we visit a small temple of Devi which the villagers consider very pious and respects a lot.

Trekking further bring us to the campsite of Halche from where we get lovely views of Bandarpoonch, White Peak, Black Peak or Kalanag, Ruinsara peaks and  a peek into the opposite valley - the route towards Black Peak, Dhumdarkandi Pass which exits to Gangotri in Harshil and Bali Pass which exits to Yamunotri.

Day 4 - Kalkattiyadhar to Har Ki Doon & back to Kalkattiyadhar

  • Altitude:  11,800ft
  • Trek: 10 km / 8-9 Hrs
  • Trek gradient: Easy to moderate.
  • Water sources: You can refill your water bottles in the river along the trail.
  • Stay: Overnight stay in tents.

From Kalkattiyadhar, the valley divides itself into 2: one way leading towards Har ki dun and other one towards Balli Pass, Yamunotri. Our day would start at 6:00 am with early morning tea followed by breakfast at 8 am. We will start our trek towards Har Ki Dun at 9 am. First 1.5 kms of the trek route is a bit steep and post that route descends for approximately 200 metres over 2 kms through the forests and the last 2.5 kms is a gradual ascent.

The final section of the trek receives comparatively less sunshine, so one can expect a little snow just after winter season. You also might encounter some waterfalls which are completely frozen during winters. After exploring the beauty of Har ki dun, we trek back to Kalkattiyadhar and replenish ourselves with hot dinner.

Day 5 - Kalkattiyadhar to Pauni Garaat via Osla

  • Altitude:  8,200ft
  • Trek: 8 km / 5-6 Hrs
  • Trek gradient: Easy
  • Water sources: You can refill your water bottles in the river along the trail.
  • Stay: Overnight stay in tents.

Today will the easy part of the Har Ki Dun Trek but going downhill is always a tricky one. We will be trekking by the same route so you have an idea about the landscape. After a tiring day of trekking, we will stop at Osla for a sumptuous lunch and then explore the area while you can admire the village again, and take pictures of the beautiful views at Osla.

After that, you head downwards to Pauni Garaat. You’ll camp overnight in tets , put to sleep by the sound of the river.

Day 6 - Pauni Garaat to Sankri via Taluka

  • Altitude:  6,400ft
  • Trek: 10 km / 5-6 Hrs
  • Drive: Drive from Taluka to Sankri - 12 km.(1 hour)
  • Trek gradient: Easy
  • Water sources: You can refill your water bottles in the river along the trail.
  • Stay: Overnight stay in Guest house stay.

A 5-hour trek to Taluka alongside River Supin will start in the morning after the morning tea; we will be climbing down by the same route. We expect to reach Taluka at 12:30 pm where shared cabs would be waiting for us at the end of the dirt road to drive back to Sankri. Sankri will be reached just in time for tea and snacks.

Day 7 - Sankri to Dehradun

  • Drive:  10 hours, 220 km.
  • Time taken:  you’ll reach Dehradun by 6-7 pm.(Breakfast and lunch excluded.)

Today, we will start our drive early in the morning so that we reach on time at Dehradun Railway station to catch your train or flights for onward journey. Our trek ends here.

The Trip Cost Includes

  • Transport: Dehradun to Sankri and Return.
  • All accommodation during trek. (Home stay, Camping).
  • All meals during trek. (Veg. + Egg).
  • Necessary Permits and first aid medical kits
  • Qualified and experienced mountain guide, and support staff.
  • Oxygen Cylinder and stretcher for emergency case.
  • High altitude rescue expert trek leader.
  • Necessary equipments for climbing, ropes, ice axe and other technical gear for climbing.
  • Mules to carry the central luggage.

The Trip Cost Excludes

  • Fees and permit for Non-Indian residence are excluded
  • Any type of personal expenses
  • Extra snacks and meals during trek from shop.
  • Insurance of the trip
  • Things not mentioned under Inclusions.
  • Mule or porter to carry personal luggage.
  • Personal gear, and equipment

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

Fitness Required for Har Ki Dun Trek

At high altitude as the air gets thinner oxygen becomes less abundant.The percentage saturation of hemoglobin with oxygen determines the content of oxygen in our blood. After the human body reaches around 2,100 m (7,000 feet) above sea level, the level of  oxygen in our hemoglobin begins to plummet. However, the human body has both short-term and long-term adaptations to altitude that allow it to partially compensate for the lack of oxygen.

The Har Ki Dun Trek is a moderate trek suitable for first time trekker with basic to above average fitness

Trekking Experience: Prior trekking experience is helpful for this trek but not necessary.

Fitness Required: The Har Ki Dun Trek falls in the category of Moderate treks. The trail is fairly laid out path and has very few steep ascends or descends. Water is available through out the trail. But still if you are thinking of your first big Himalayan trekking experience its better to be prepared.

Breathing exercises

If you’re trekking to Har Ki Dun Trek , note that the temperature drops to around -5 to 7 degree Celcius at night. During the day, the temperature will be at around 10 to 15 degrees. While going for summit the 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.

Dehradun
Dehradun is the base location for our Har Ki Dun Trek. Our meeting point in Dehradun is the railway station. We will pick you up at 6:00 AM in the morning and start the drive to Sankri. The entire drive from Dehradun to Sankri takes around 8 Hours.

Reaching Dehradun by Flights
Jolly Grant Airport is the Airport in Dehradun and is situated on the outskirts of Dehradun. Taxis are easily available from Jolly Grant Airport to Dehradun.

Reaching by train
Dehradun is well connected by railway network with major destinations of India because it’s a major pilgrim centre.

Following is the list of useful trains to reach dehradun from Delhi:
12017 DEHRADUN SHTBDI
19565 UTTARANCHAL EXPRESS
22659 DEHRADUN EXPRESS
14309 UJJAINI EXPRESS
14317 IND DDN EXPRESS
12055 DDN JANSHTBDI
12687 DEHRADUN EXPRESS
14041 MUSSOORIE EXPRESS
12205 NANDA DEVI EXPRESS

For exact timings & Schedule of trains please check the Indian Railway official site.

Reaching Dehradun by Road (Bus)
Dehradun is well connected with comfortable Volvo buses run by government and private operators. You can catch luxury and normal buses to Dehradun which are available from ISBT Kashmiri Gate and Anand Vihar.

Price From INR11,500 INR10,000/person
10,000
Total 10,000 INR

Trip Facts

  • Uttarakhand
  • 7 days
  • Easy To Moderate
  • 12,000 Ft
  • Day time: 8°C-15°C; Night time: -5°C-3°C
  • 40-45 Km
  • Round the year except monsoon.
  • 10-15 trekkers
  • Dehradun to Dehradun
  • Meals while on trek (Veg + Egg)
  • Guest house, Camping
  • Dehradun, Haridwar & Rishikesh is the nearest rail head to the base camp
  • jolly grant airport Dehradun

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