This is one of the most scenic treks in India, in an area that has been attracting Hindu pilgrims and adventure seekers for centuries. The trek technically starts from the 18th century temple of Gangotri and traverses beyond the source of the Ganges River to the scenic meadow of Tapovan, a favored spot for ascetics meditating in the Himalayas.
Taking a dip in the icy waters at Gaumukh (3,890 meters), the snout of the Gangotri glacier, make this a memorable trek. From passing orchards of coniferous pine trees at Chirbasa and birch at Bhojbasa, to the retreating glacier at Gaumukh, the source of the Bhagirathi, a smorgasbord of sights and experiences await in the shadow of Himalayan giants, the Bhagirathi massif and the majestic Shivling peaks.
From Gaumukh to Tapovan (4,463 meters), which is cradled amongst the mighty peaks of the Garhwal Himalayas, the climb is steep. We will traverse the glacier for the climb to the surreal meadows of Tapovan. The highlight of the trek calls for an early start for a full day trek to Kirti Bamak glacier at 4,800 meters. From here you can see the Kedardome peak, Kedarnath, Bhartekuntha, Thalay Sagar, Bhrigupanth, Meru and to top it all a magnificent view of the Shivling peaks in the east.
Come join us on this awe-inspiring yet spiritual journey.
DAY 0: Arrive in Delhi and take AM flight to Dehradun
DAY 1: Delhi to Camp Kuflon (1,520m) Transfer to Kuflon, near the road head for Dodital, 11 kms from Uttarkashi in the valley of the Assi Ganga (5 hr. drive). Overnight Kuflon.
DAY 2: Camp Kuflon Basics to Chirbasa (3600m) – A 4 hr. drive followed by a 4 hr. walk to reach the holy shrine of Gangotri (3000m). Visit the temple and the start the 4 hr. walk up towards Gaumukh, the source of the river Ganges. The trail meanders along the river and just before Chirbasa (Home of the Pines) one gets the first peek of the Bhagirathi Peaks. Chirbasa at 3600m is now a cluster of shops nestled among pine trees. Walk down from the main trail and camp close to the river.
DAY 3: Chirbasa to Bhojbasa (3,800m) – A relatively relaxed day with only about 3 hrs. of walk. Reach the campsite of Bhojbasa (3800m), home of birch (though this area is quite denuded) and setup camp. An evening walk to one of the high points close by is on the cards for acclimatization. Cameras are a must as a herd of ibex or a beautiful sunset may await you!
DAY 4: Bhojbasa to Tapovan (4,450 m) – A 5/6 hrs. trek with about 2hrs to reach Gaumukh (4,000m), the source of the Ganges. It’s a visual treat to see the power of nature and an experience in itself to watch the Ganga gush out of the snout of the Gangotri glacier. Cross the glacier and start the steep ascent to reach the beautiful meadow of Tapovan (3hrs from Gaumukh).
DAY 5: Tapovan to Kirti Bamak to Tapovan – (7 kms/6 hrs.) An early morning start for a full day trek to Kirti Bamak glacier. From here you can see the Kedardome peak, Kedarnath, Bhartekuntha, Thalay Sagar, Bhrigupanth, Meru and to top it all a magnificent view of the Shivling peaks in the east. After exploring the area return to Tapovan for dinner and an overnight camp.
DAY 6: Rest day at Tapovan (4,450m) a lush green meadow dotted with wildflowers at the foot of the giant Shivling peak. Spend your day engaged in short hikes around Shivling, visiting the sadhus, and just taking in the awe inspiring beauty of the mighty peaks of Bhagirathi, Shivling, and Meru.
DAY 7: Tapovan to Chirbasa (3,600m) – Start the trek back to reach Chirbasa in about 5 hrs. Setup camp.
DAY 8: Chirbasa to Gangotri to Camp Kuflon Basics – Start early on a 2/3 hrs. walk and the 4 hrs. drive after breakfast to reach Gangotri (4hrs) to board the waiting vehicles to Camp Kuflon Basics for the long awaited comforts of a hot shower, barbeque and the campfire.
DAY 9: Rest day at Camp Kuflon and end of trek.
DAY 10: Transfer back to Atali Ganga (optional night stay) & Dehradun