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Great Meadows of India Trek

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  • Safety
  • Small groups - (6-12)
  • Experience nature
  • Sustainable experiences

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  • 7 Days/6 Nights
  • Moderate
  • 14200 ft./4328 m
  • 12 Participants
  • Summer and Autumn
  • Uttarakhand

Great Medaows of India Trek Overview

Amidst the highlands of Uttarakhand lies nature’s hidden treasure: the grand sprawling grasslands or meadows. When summer casts its magic spell, the meadows burst to life as vibrant wildflowers splash a dreamy touch to these verdant grasslands. Uttarakhand is known for its wealth of meadows colloquially called Bugyals, and is home to diverse picturesque meadows or Bugyal treks.

But amidst the plethora of options, there is one trek that weaves together the grandeur of three of Uttarakhand’s most stunning meadows, offering an experience of a lifetime. The Great Meadows of India Trek seamlessly combines the splendour of three popular treks, Dayara Bugyal, Surya Top and Gidara Bugyal. It takes you on a journey of discovering breathtaking vistas. 

The Great Meadows of India is beyond a trek, it’s a journey to a Himalayan Paradise. Imagine traversing the vast expanse of Dayara Bugyal where the lush green carpet sprawls to infinity, wrapped in a myriad of vibrant wildflowers. Add a rewarding ascent to Surya Top. Here, as the sun sets, golden hues dance upon the snow-capped peaks, casting a magical glow. The journey culminates in a dreamy wonder as Gidara Bugyal and its ethereal expanse mesmerize you with sheer magnificence, leaving you breathless. 

As you wander through the lush green carpet, Himalayan peaks keep you company and play hide and seek right from the beginning. Gleaming peaks of Shrikanth, Jaonli, DKD and Bandarpooch appear right in front of you. 

The Great Meadows of India Trek stands out amongst all other Bugyal treks. It’s exclusive and remains off-beat, offering you a secluded trail and serene campsites.

Inclusions 

  • Meals 
    • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinners (Day 1 Dinner to Day 7 Breakfast)
  • Accommodation 
    • Tents, Homestays/Dorms
    • Cloakroom Charges 
  • Highly Experienced Leaders and Guides 
    • Trained and Qualified Guides
    • Certified Outdoor Leaders
  • Permits
    • National Parks and Sanctuaries
    • Forest Permits and Entry fees 
  • Camping Equipment
    • Kitchen Tent
    •  Toilet Tent
    • Dome Tents 
    • Sleeping Bags
    • Mattresses
  • Technical Equipment
    • Wilderness Medical Kit
    • Climbing Rope 
    • Climbing Accessories
    • Ice Axe
    • Microspikes
    • Oxygen Cylinder
    • BP Meter
    •  Oximeter, Thermometer etc.

Exclusions 

  • Travel cost from pick-up point to and from the basecamp (Dehradun to Agoda and Bhangeli to Dehradun cab fare)
  • Meals during transit to Agoda and from Bhangeli – OWLS Basecamps.
  • Personal expenses 
  • Offloading charges 
  • Cost incurred due to change in the itinerary 
  • Additional services  (including mules, assistance, health-related support etc.)
  • Anything not mentioned in the Inclusions list. 

 

Great Meadows of India Trek Itinerary

Day 1 : Dehradun (2,150 ft.) to Agoda (7,381 ft.)

Day 1 is the pick-up day of your seven day long experience. The OWLS team will meet you in the morning at ISBT Dehradun.

Agoda is 160 km from the capital city of Dehradun. You reach Agoda village after a 9-10 hour drive on meandering mountain roads. Agoda, the base camp of Dodital-Dayara is a quaint hamlet, home to roughly 100 families. Agoda village is a perfect place for people who long for solitude amidst nature and wish to immerse themselves in a rural lifestyle.

Day 2 : Agoda (7,381 ft.) to Siyari (9,600 ft.)

Your journey to witness the Great Meadows of India begins today. We leave Agoda village and enter the forest area. You will find yourself lost in the soothing sound of the forest. As you advance on the hike, the majestic Yamuntori and Gangotri ranges keep you company. The last stretch of the trek to Siyari is a ridge walk to the campsite atop a hill.

Day 3 : Siyari (9,600 ft.) to Devkund (10,500 ft.) via Dayara Bugyal

The first meadow, Dayara Bugyal is along the route. As you head towards the campsite in Devkund, the first meadow of the Great Meadow Treks of India appears. The lush green meadow sprawls to infinity. Tiny wildflowers sprouting in vivid colours add to the beauty of Dayara Bugyal. The team spends refreshing time at Dayara Top before descending to the campsite in Devkund. You will reach the campsite in the evening, and indulge in a hot cup of tea.

Day 4: Devkund (10,500 ft.) to Poultini (12,400 ft.) via Surya Top (13,200 ft.)

It’s a long day ahead as you traverse some challenging trails to summit the Surya Top. A demanding climb to Surya Top is rewarded with breathtaking views of Himalayan peaks. Mt Bandarpoonch, Mt Kalanag and Gangotri Range appear at a close distance. After admiring the mesmerising views from the top, the team descends to the next campsite in Poultini.

Day 5: Poultini (12,400 ft.) to Gidara (13,700 ft.) via Gidara Pass (14,200 ft.)

The journey to witness Gidara Bugyal is challenging and tests your mettle. The day starts early and passes through an enchanting trail. As you continue your journey to the next campsite in Gidara, the sound of nature keeps you company and the snow-studded Himalayan peaks play hide and seek, intriguing you to discover what lies ahead.

Day 6: Gidara (13,700 ft.) to Jungle Camp (9,800 ft.) via Gidara Bugyal

The journey to witness Gidara Bugyal is challenging and tests your mettle. There is a significant altitude gain as you navigate the steep ascents to reach Gidara Bugyal. A ridge floats above the Bugyal. You hop from one end of the meadow to the other on the ridge that extends for a few hours. And while you are immersing yourself in the serenity of the lush green meadows, the splendorous Gangotri ranges bestow you with its gleaming sight. Jaonli, Draupadi Ka Danda, Srikanth and Bandarpooch offer spell binding views from Gidara Top. 

Day 7 : Jungle Camp (9,800 ft.) to Bhangeli (8,000 ft.) and drive back to Dehradun (2,150 ft.)

It’s a long day ahead. The team descends to Bhangeli and continues their journey ahead to Dehradun. You will reach Dehradun in the evening between 7 to 8 pm. Plan you onward journey accordingly.

How to reach the basecamp of Great Meadows of India trek?

✈️Nearest Airport – Jolly Grant International Airport, Dehradun

🚉 Nearest Railway Station – Dehradun Railway Station

The Basecamp of the Great Meadows of India trek is Agoda, a remote village near Uttarkashi. The base camp is around 158km and is roughly 7- 8 hrs drive from Dehradun.  To reach the base camp of Dodital, plan your travel to the nearest airport or the railway station well in advance. 

OWLS arranges pick-up from Dehradun to Agoda for the participants. The pick-up will be available at the Inter-State Bus Stand, Dehradun (ISBT Dehradun).  Reach the pickup location at 6 a.m.

[Note: Fare for a 5-7 seater cab will be Rs. 7,000 per vehicle. The 12-seater Tempo Traveller costs Rs. 11,000. This amount will be split by the participants and paid to the driver.]

Travel Plan to Dehradun

The base camp Agoda is around 158 km and is a 7 -8 hrs drive from Dehradun.  Dehradun is easily accessible by air, train and road. The nearest airport is Jolly Grant International Airport in Dehradun. You can book your tickets well in advance till Dehradun to avail of tickets at cheaper rates. You can choose to travel by air from any metro city to Dehradun. The other option is to reach Delhi by air and travel by train or bus from Delhi onwards. 

Here is a guide on how to plan your travel step by step to reach Dehradun

  • Reach Dehradun directly by air or train on Day 0
  • Fly to Delhi and board a bus or train to reach Dehradun on Day 0
  • OWLS pickup from Dehradun on Day 1 at ISBT, Dehradun 

Travel Plan A – By Air till Dehradun

 If you are reaching Dehradun by air, here are a few options for planning your travel. Dehradun Airport is well connected with all the metro cities. You can book a direct or connecting flight to Dehradun. If you plan to reach Dehradun by air, ensure to land in Dehradun on Day 0. 

Dehradun city is 32 km away from the Jollygrant Airport. It takes 1 hour to reach the city. You can opt to hire a cab/auto directly from the Airport. The other option is to exit the Airport complex and book an auto rickshaw. The charges for prepaid cabs at the airport are exorbitant.  Another low-cost alternative to get to Dehradun city is to travel on a city bus. Walk towards the Dehradun – Rishikesh highway and hop on a shared auto or city bus. You will have to wait for the bus. Regular city buses run between Dehradun and Rishikesh almost every half an hour. 

If you land in Dehradun on day 0, book a hotel or dorm near ISBT, Dehradun.  Garhwal Mandal Vikas Nigam’s hotel is 10 minutes away from ISBT and offers rooms at reasonable rates. They have economical as well as deluxe rooms. 

OWLS pick-up will be available on Day 1 at ISBT Dehradun at 6. a.m. 

Travel Plan B by train/ bus from Delhi

This option will be economical for you. Flight to Dehradun will be slightly priced higher than flight to Delhi. To cut down your travel budget, fly to Delhi, then get on a bus or train from Delhi to Dehradun. 

You can book and find bus options at UTC Online or Redbus. Another option is to go to Kashmere Gate and book a bus offline. Try to board a bus or train which will arrive in Dehradun on the evening of Day 0. Reaching Dehradun on Day 0 helps you to rest before your trek starts on Day 1. 

If you want to travel overnight, Nanda Devi Express runs daily and departs from H. Nizamuddin at 11.35 p.m. and arrives at Dehradun early at 5.40 a.m. Overnight Volvo AC buses also run frequently between Delhi and Dehradun. It takes 6-7 hours to get to Dehradun from Delhi. 

How to plan your return flight/train to Delhi 

Your Trek is 7 days long, including travel to and from the base camp. The team will be back in Dehradun on Day 3. You reach Dehradun in the evening, between 7 to 8 pm. 

While returning, you can fly directly out of Dehradun to your city. The second option is to travel by bus or train to Delhi. 

[Note: Bhangeli to Dehradun fare for a 5-7 seater cab will be Rs. 8,000 per vehicle. The 12-seater Tempo Traveller costs Rs. 12,000. This amount will be split by the participants and paid to the driver.]

If you go with the first option, you can book a direct flight from Dehradun to your city on Day 4. 

The second option requires you to travel to Delhi by train or bus.  Once you reach Dehradun in the evening, you can head to ISBT Dehradun and book an AC Volvo bus to Delhi and travel comfortably. The other option to reach Delhi from Dehradun is to book a train. 

If the second option suits you better, book a flight that departs late morning or early afternoon of Day 5. The overnight buses from Dehradun arrive in Delhi in the wee hours. It is advisable to book an afternoon flight to avoid rushing.

Some trekkers prefer to stay back for a day and use the buffer day to explore Rishikesh or Mussorie. You can either stay for a night and explore Dehradun city or proceed home the same evening if flying out of Delhi. 

Great Meadows of India Trek Map

Great Meadow of India Trek FAQ

Where is Great Meadows of India Trek located?

Great Meadows of India Trek is in Uttarakhand. The trek starts from a sleepy village called Agoda in Uttarkashi district.

Where is the base camp of the Great Meadows of India trek?

Agoda village in Uttarkashi is the basecamp of Great Meadows of India trek.

What is the distance of the Great Meadows of India Trek?

The total distance of the Great Meadows of India trek is around 50 km. You walk an average of 5 – 6 hours daily.

What is the duration of the Great Meadows of India Trek?

It takes 7 days to complete the Great Meadows of India trek, including travel to and from the base camp.

What is the altitude of the Great Meadows of India trek?

The trek is at an altitude of 14,200ft.

What is the best time to visit the Great Meadows of India trek?

The best time to visit the Great Meadows of India trek is summer and autumn.

What will be the temperature in Great Meadows of India ? 

The temperature ranges between 13°C and 17°C  during the day. Night temperature dips to zero to -4°C to -6°C at higher altitudes.

Who can participate in the Great Meadows of India trek?

The trek is classified as moderate to difficult. If you have explored a few easy Himalayan treks, you can navigate the Great Meadows of India Trek comfortably. If you are a beginner with adequate fitness requirements, you can consider the trek after discussing it with our Outdoor Leaders.

What is the difficulty level of the Great Meadows of India trek? 

The trek can be categorised as moderate to difficult, considering the duration and altitude.

Do we need prior experience for the trek?

If you maintain a regular fitness routine, you can comfortably complete the Great Meadows of India trek. Prior experience of a high-altitude trek is preferred.

Yes, it is a challenging trek. You need prior experience of at least one high-altitude trek.

Is the Great Meadows of India trek suitable for beginners?

Yes, if you are a beginner with good physical fitness, you can consider the trek after consulting our Outdoor Leader.

Can we do the Trek on our own?

It is challenging and has long hiking hours. The trek requires experienced guides to help you navigate the difficult terrain. If you plan to go solo on this trek, hiring a guide is a must to avoid any unforeseen situation.

Will there be snow on the trek?

Yes. Great Meadows of India experience snowfall in abundance in winter. You will find snow in abundance between December and March.

What is the cost of the Great Meadows of India trek?

The Great Meadows of India trek cost is Rs 21,500 per person

The trek cost covers your experience from basecamp to basecamp.

Will there be a network in Great Meadows of India Trek?

The last place with a mobile network will be the base camp in Agoda.

What document do I need to carry for the Great Meadows of India trek?

Please keep the following documents ready for your trek –

  • ID proof – Adhar
  • Health form

FAQ

How should I prepare to avoid AMS?

The most important thing to do on a trek to avoid AMS is to drink water, more than your daily intake. Water is an excellent way to avoid AMS. Along with this, you should also have all the nutritious meals we provide on the trek. If you still are sceptical about getting AMS, we would advise you to carry Diamox tablets with you. However, according to the situation your Outdoor leader will advise whether or not you should take it.

I have a medical condition. Can I join the trek?

We encourage everyone to trek, even if or not they have a medical condition. We have an in-house doctor at OWLS with whom you can discuss your medical condition and accordingly, we can help you better prepare you for the trek.

Should I bring snacks to eat on the trek?

Although we provide filling breakfast, lunch, and dinner along with morning tea and evening snacks, you can carry some light snacks for munching on the trail. You can carry protein bars, dry fruits, and homemade snacks like Shakkarpara to help you give that extra energy on the trek. 

Who will be leading my trek?

All our Outdoor Leaders are trained and experienced leaders. They have completed basic Mountaineering Course, and are equipped with basic first-aid knowledge. Our leaders are certified Wilderness First Responder course

Do I need to get my medical kit for the trek?

You don’t need to carry your medical kit. If you have your prescribed medications, you need to carry them on the trek

What kind of arrangement is available for accommodation on the trek?

The accommodation will be on twin sharing basis. One tent will be shared by two trekkers. 

Is there any arrangement for offloading on the trek?

Yes. Communicate your requirement to the trek leaders beforehand, as it will be difficult to arrange to offload at the last minute. The offloading charges will be Rs 500 per bag, and your bag should not weigh more than 9 kg. 

Note: At OWLs, we suggest our participants carry their backpacks and avoid offloading. However, in case of pressing circumstances, you can opt for offloading.

Is there any option to keep our luggage at the base camp?

Yes, you can leave the extra luggage at the base camp. However, do not leave valuables like laptops, jewellery, or any other expensive items in the base camp. 

What will be the toilet facilities on the trek?

The OWLS team will set up a toilet tent near the campsites. The toilets will be dry toilets and you will have to use toilet paper. There will be a pit dug by the team and you will have to cover your nature’s call with dry soil. Avoid using wet wipes, as they are not biodegradable. At OWLS, we thrive to leave no trace in the mountains. 

At the base camp, you will have regular concrete toilets.

What will be the food arrangement on the trek?

The food offered will be as per the nutritional requirements. As you will be walking every day for 4-6 hours, you will be burning a good amount of calories. The team makes sure that the food you will be offered is healthy and helps you sustain through the day. The regular meal comprises eggs, locally grown vegetables, rice, roti, and pulses. The menu changes from day to day. 

Are there any ATMs at the base camp?

The last ATM will be in Uttarkashi. 

Carry a sufficient amount of cash with them. Since the base camp is situated away from the cities and lacks basic facilities like ATMs and digital payment options, it is always better to be prepared. 

You can carry the cash for cab fare and food to and from the base camp. We suggest carrying a minimum of 5-6k to ensure you have enough funds for your journey.

Will there be hot water facilities?

We recommend our trekkers drink water from natural sources when acclimatising to the mountain temperature and altitude. Since resources are limited at high altitudes, we do not provide hot water. However, during the winter months, when natural water sources freeze, we arrange hot water for participants. Another reason to avoid hot water on our trek is to prevent health issues like diarrhoea.