Introduction to Chadar Trek
If you want to experience a strong gush of adrenaline, the Chadar trek is for you.
The Chadar Trek or the Frozen River trek is known to be one of the most difficult treks of the great Himalayan range of mountains.
Starting from the village of Chilling near the city of Leh in Jammu & Kashmir, the Chadar Trek is a winter trek and is undertaken in the months of December to February every year.
The trekkers have to walk on the Zanskar river which freezes over during these winter months as the temperatures drop to as low as minus twenty degrees. It has been rated as a ‘Difficult’ trek and is not recommended for novice trekkers. But do not let this disappoint you.
Let’s have a quick glimpse of why Chadar trek is a trek every adventurist must experience.
Why Should You Go For The Chadar Trek?
The frozen Zanskar River receives hundreds of visitors for the Chadar Trek every year and with good reason. After all, where else in the world would you get to spend so much time in such spellbinding surroundings?
Walking on the frozen river while watching the mesmerizing snow covered mountains is an exciting proposition in itself. You will get a chance to interact with and experience the culture of the local Ladakhi people who reside along the Zanskar River all year round.
Since the trek passes through some of the most solitary locales, you also have a good opportunity for spotting rare wildlife such as the ibex, the local mountain goat and if you are lucky, even a snow leopard or two.
Chadar Trek is also not simply an expedition into the mountains but is, in fact, a very challenging adventure which tests your strength against the harsh climate and steep terrain.
Don’t you want to feel that glow of contentment and rejuvenation as you conquer the impossible? Here are a few tips that will help you prep yourself for the Chadar Trek.
What to carry for the Chadar Trek?
Since you will be travelling in sub-zero temperatures, warm clothing including heavy jackets, caps, gloves and several pairs of socks are necessary. You will also need ice picks and heavy trekking boots for walking on snow.
Apart from this, it is highly recommended to equip yourself with the standard trekking gear such as trekking pole, water bottle, raincoat, sunglasses and the like.
Are permits required?
The Chadar Trek is a part of an ecologically sensitive area and therefore a wildlife/environment protection fee is charged by the government from all trekkers. Generally, the permits are arranged for by the trekking tour operator and included in the package cost. However, if you are taking care of it yourself, then you will have to arrange for the necessary permits in Leh.
How much does the Chadar Trek cost?
Most of the trek operators conducting the Chadar Trek charge somewhere between INR 20K to 25K depending on what all they include in the trek. This cost is only for the actual trek journey and the to and fro tickets from Leh are not included in this.
What is the difficulty level of the Chadar Trek?
Chadar Trek is rated as a ‘Difficult’ high-altitude trek and therefore recommended only for experienced trekkers. Physical fitness is also essential and those suffering from chronic illnesses such as asthma are not allowed on this trek. You will also need a doctor’s certificate to prove your fitness along with proofs of previous treks you have undertaken to become eligible for this.
What is the best time to go on the Chadar Trek?
Chadar Trek is a winter trek and takes place between December and March every year. The best time, however, is mid-January to mid-February as this is the ideal time for the ice sheets on the frozen river to be completely stable.
What are the mandatory documents required for this trek?
You will need to carry your original ID proof along with photocopies of the same. For foreign nationals, carrying their passport is a must. You will also need 4 passport size photographs for putting on permits as required.
Get Set Go
If you want a trek through a thrilling terrain which tests your stamina and survival instincts while treating you to stunning views of the mountain, then the Chadar Trek is what you are looking for.
The Chadar Trek is believed far and wide to be the trek of a lifetime but you need to experience it yourself to believe it. So, what are you waiting for? Get ready to embark on the most amazing trip you have ever undertaken. Book your trek today and start preparing.