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Kedartal Trek

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  • Small groups - (6-12)
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  • Sustainable experiences

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  • 7 days/6 nights
  • Hard
  • 15,500 ft
  • 12 Participants
  • Summer and Autumn
  • Uttarakhand

Kedartal Trek Overview

Kedartal Trek takes you to a breathtaking glacial lake nestled at a staggering 15,500ft among towering mountains. Mt Thalaysagar and Bhrighupanth feed the lake with its melting snow. Renowned for an alluring reflection of Mt Thalaysagar, Kedartal Trek also offers the grandeur of big mountains from a vantage point. 

Kedartal is one of the rare Himalayan treks that unfolds the magical view of big Himalayan peaks from a close distance. The trek offers the grandeur of Mt Thalaysagar, Mt Bhrigupanth, Manda Parvat, Mt Jogin, and Mt Gangotri, towering in the background. 

The trek starts from the holy town of Gangotri, located on the bank of river Bhagirathi and takes 7 days to complete. Gangotri comes to life with hundreds of pilgrims frequenting the Holy town during the Char Dham Yatra season. The place is also the base camp of the Gaumukh Tapovan trek. 

Though it sounds exciting, Kedartal is suitable for trekkers with prior exposure to high-altitude treks. For those prepared to embark on a trek to Kedartal, the trek offers mesmerising landscapes, breathtaking campsites, and towering mountains weaving a perfect canvas of nature. 

 

Inclusions

  • Meals 
    • Breakfast, Lunch and dinners (Day 1 Dinner to Day 7 Breakfast)
  • Accommodation 
    • Tents, Homestays/Dorms
    • Cloakroom charges 
  • Experienced Guides 
    • Trained and Qualified Guides
  • Permits
    • National parks and sanctuaries 
  • Camping Equipment
    • Kitchen tent
    • Toilet tent
    • Dome tents 
    • Sleeping bags
    • Mattresses
  • Technical Equipment
    • Wilderness Medical Kit
    • Climbing Rope 
    • Climbing accessories
    • Oxygen Cylinder
    • BP Meter
    •  Oximeter, thermometer etc.

Exclusions 

  • Travel cost from Pick up point to and from basecamp 
  • Transit Meals
  • 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. 

Kedartal Trek Itinerary

Day 1: Dehradun to Gangotri (10,000 ft)

  • Distance – 242 km
  • Time Taken – 8 to 9 hrs

Kedartal trek begins from Gangotri. A long journey on meandering mountain roads leads you to the base camp. The distance of around 242 km between Dehradun and Gangotri is covered in 8 to 9 hours. 

There are several travel options available to reach Gangotri from Dehradun. You can get on a bus from Dehradun ISBT or shared taxis. The other option is to travel to Uttarkashi and then hire a taxi. Try reaching Uttarkashi in the afternoon as finding shared cabs is challenging in the late afternoon. The distance between Uttarkashi and Gangotri is 99 km. 

Day 2: Gangotri (10,000 ft) to Bhoj Kharak (12,750 ft)

  • Trek Distance – 9 km
  • Time Taken – 5 to 6 hrs

Your trek begins from the holy town of Gangotri. The day starts early, and you will traverse a moderate trail for the first few hours. As the Bhoj Kharak campsite approaches, the trail becomes challenging with rocky patches and steep ascents that will test your physical fitness. 

 You will also encounter the infamous spider wall, a tricky patch of rock before reaching  Bhoj Kharak. After your arrival in the afternoon, you can enjoy a hot meal at the campsite. 

Day 3: Bhoj Kharak (12,750 ft) to Kedar Kharak (14,200 ft)

  • Distance – 4.5 km
  • Time Taken – 3 to 4hrs 

The trail from Bhoj Kharak to Kedar Kharak passes through some rugged terrain. You will navigate a fair share of steep ascents and descents to reach the campsite. 

Bhoj forest presents a serene setting, with its leaves creating a perfect backdrop for photography in the autumn.  If you are lucky, you will catch a glimpse of Himalayan wildlife, including Himalayan Black Bear and Blue Sheep, which many trekkers have spotted on the trail. 

After a tiring walk on a moderate to difficult trail, you will reach the campsite of Kedar Kharak, where you will be greeted by beaming Bhrigupanth in the backdrop. 

 

Day 4: Kedar Kharak (14,200 ft) to Kedartal (15,500 ft)

  • Distance – 5.4 km
  • Time Taken 6 hrs

It’s finally the day to witness the allure of Kedartal. The emerald lake welcomes trekkers while Mt Thalaysagar’s reflection on the lake adds magic to the experience. This moment is when every trekker feels a sense of accomplishment and snow-studded peaks appear surreal right in front. 

The route to Kedartal is strenuous and altitude gain makes the trek an arduous journey. You will traverse rocky terrain, steep ascents and demanding trails, however, the first sight of a lake and big mountains calms your soul and mind.  

Day 5 : Kedartal (15,500 ft) to Jogin Advanced Base Camp (16,000 ft) to Kedar Kharak (14,200 ft)

The day is long and strenuous, as the altitude increases and the trail becomes demanding. After admiring the surreal beauty of Kedartal Lake, the team heads to Jogin Advanced base camp to be mesmerised by the grandeur of Mt Thalaysagar and Jogin peaks.  

 

Day 6 : Kedar Kharak (14,200 ft) to Gangotri (10,000 ft)

  • Distance – 14 km
  • Time Taken- 8 to 9 hrs

On Day 6, you will descend to the holy town of Gangotri after a fascinating mountain adventure. The day starts early after breakfast, with the trail leading you on a continuous descent to Gangotri,  navigating rocky terrain along the way. 

By evening, you will arrive in Gangotri, where you can visit the Gangotri temple to celebrate the successful completion of your trek. 

Day 7: Drive back to Dehradun (2,150 ft)

After a challenging yet exhilarating experience, the team returns to Dehradun on day 7. The cab starts early from Gangotri and reaches in the evening. Include a buffer day while booking your return tickets. 

 

How to reach the basecamp of Kedartal trek?

✈️Nearest Airport – Jolly Grant International Airport, Dehradun

🚉 Nearest Railway Station – Dehradun Railway Station

The base camp of the Kedartal trek is the holy town of Gangotri. The distance between Dehradun and Gangotri is around 242 km. It takes 10 -12 hours drive to cover the distance. 

The drive to the base camp in Gangotri passes through Chamba, Chinalisour, Uttarkashi, and Harshil. The mountain roads leading to Gangotri have their unmissable charm. The towering pine trees you witness in Chamba. The scenery along the journey only gets beautiful as you move further. You will reach Gangotri by evening and rest for the night. 

Travel Plan to Dehradun

The base camp Gangotri is around 242 km and is a 10- 11 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

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.  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 Jolly Grant 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. 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 offer both economical and 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 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. Board a bus or train arriving in Dehradun on Day 0 evening. 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 Kedartal Trek is 7  days, 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. 

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

Travel to Delhi by train or bus

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 you prefer the second option, 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. Book a flight that departs in the afternoon to avoid rushing. 

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

 

Kedartal Trek FAQ

Where is Kedartal Trek located?

Kedartal Trek is located in Uttarakhand. The trek starts from Gangotri. 

Is the Kedartal trek suitable for beginners?

The trek is suitable for seasoned trekkers with prior experience of high altitude treks. We do not recommend the trek to beginners. 

What is the difficulty level of the Kedartal trek? 

The trek can be categorised as difficult, considering the duration and altitude of Kedartal. It is recommended for seasoned trekkers. 

What will be the temperature on Kedartal trek? 

Autumn months are colder with day temperatures ranging from 18°C to 20°C in Kedartal. During the night, the temperature drops to 3°C to 5°C. The higher campsites also record sub-zero temperatures towards the end of October. 

What is the best time to visit the Kedartal trek?

The best time to visit  Kedartal is during the autumn months. Kedar Trek remains accessible during the summer months. 

May and June are ideal for witnessing lush green trails and snow-covered trails. 

From September to November, you can enjoy clear mountain views, with the reflection of Mt Thalaysagar on the clear water of Kedartal creating a breathtaking experience after the challenging climbs. 

 

The colour of the lake shifts from blue to green, depending on the day’s weather. As you ascend towards the summit, you’ll be surrounded by the vibrant hues of autumn, with the trail transforming into shades of yellow, gold, and brown. Towards the end of October, the higher elevations of the trek may experience early snowfall.

Will there be snow on the trek?

Yes. Kedartal is a high-altitude trek. You will find plentiful snow along the trail if you plan your trek in early summer.  

 

What is the cost of the Kedartal trek?

 The Kedartal trek cost ranges between INR 10,000 to INR 15,000. 

 The trek cost covers your experience from basecamp to basecamp. 

What is the distance of Kedartal Trek?

The total distance of the Kedartal trek is 37 km. You walk an average of 6 to 8 hours daily. 

What is the starting point of Kedartal trek?

Gangotri is the base camp of Kedartal trek.

What is the duration of the Kedartal Trek?

Kedartal Trek spans over 7 days, including the time required for travelling to and from the base camp.

 

What is the altitude of the Kedartal trek?

The trek is at an altitude of 15,500 ft.

Can we do Kedartal trek on our own?

Kedartal trek is challenging with 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 necessary to avoid any unforeseen situation in the wild. 

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.

What document do I need to carry?

Please keep the following documents ready before filling out this form

  1. ID proof
  2. Health form (for all participants of Kashmir and Himachal Pradesh treks) and (for all participants <15 and > 60 years of age)
  3. RTPCR for children <15 years/Vaccination certificate for adults (for Nepal treks)

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 350 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. 

What will be the status of the mobile network on the trek?

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