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Parang La Trek

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September 16, 2024
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  • Small groups - (6-12)
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  • Sustainable experiences

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  • 11 Days/10 Nights
  • Hard
  • 18370 ft./5599 m
  • 12 Participants
  • August-September
  • Himachal Pradesh

Parang La Trek Overview

Parang La Trek is a challenging Trans – Himalayan trek connecting the highlands of Spiti and Ladakh regions. The trek takes you through the ancient trade route between the Spiti in the Himachal and Ladakh regions. 

An unexplored high-altitude trek, the experience gives you a glimpse of different communities and cultures. As you start your trek from Spiti, the place reverberates with its rich culture. As you cross over to the other side of the pass in Ladakh, there is an instant change in culture and sceneries. The beauty of the high desert of Ladakh and Spiti regions is unparalleled. 

The trek starts from Kaza in Himachal and concludes in Karzok village in Leh. Karzok is a small village on the bank of Tso Moriri Lake and has its charm to captivate you. 

As enticing as it sounds, Parang La is suitable for highly experienced trekkers who are a few high-altitude treks old. As you traverse the highlands and the cold desert, the oxygen level is constantly low, and the trail is challenging. You will tread through the cold desert of Spiti and Ladakh region. The multiple river crossings and the icy cold water are taxing. Walking on the glacier, facing crevasses, and the cold and windy weather demands a certain level of prior experience. 

Discover the enthralling Tso Moriri Lake 

The trek that explores diverse geographical regions culminates at the Tso Moriri lake in Ladakh. The magical lake of Tso Moriri enthrals you, compelling you to freeze the moment as you gaze at the clear blue water of the lake. The team walks alongside the Tso Moriri Lake on the last day and witnesses the beauty of the lake up close.

 The adventurous trek that takes you through diverse geographical regions culminates at the serene Tso Moriri Lake in Ladakh. The enchanting beauty of the lake mesmerises you, and you wish time would stand still as you gaze at its clear blue waters. On the final day of the trek, the team walks alongside the Tso Moriri Lake and witnesses the mystical beauty of the lake up close.

Parang La Trek offers you diverse and intriguing terrain. The walk on the glacier, the challenging trail at an altitude above 4,000 mt on most days, and the beautiful mountain valleys, the trek gives you all. The challenging yet rewarding trek of Parang la encapsulates the diversified landscapes and rich and ancient culture of the Spiti and Ladakh regions. The best part is the exclusiveness of the trek. As the trek remains unexplored by many, you will have the luxury of ultimate solitude on this trek.

Parang La trek brochure

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 

  • Cab charges to Kaza from Manali and to Leh from Karzok – OWLS Basecamps.
  • Transit meals (Day 1 and Day 11)
  • 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. 

Itinerary

Day 1 : Drive from Manali (6,398 ft.) to Kaza (12,500 ft.)

The drive from Manali to Kaza is an adventurous ride. The distance of 202 Kms is covered in around 5- 6 hours. The drive from Manali to Kaza traverses through meandering mountain roads. You will cross the famed Rohtang Pass and Kunjum La.

Start early from Manali and reach Kaza in the evening. Kaza is a small town bustling with tourists and explorers from different corners of the world.

Day 2 : Drive from Kaza (12,500 ft.) to Chicham (14,000 ft.) and acclimatize

Chicham is a small village known for the famous suspension bridge located here. The Chicham bridge is renowned as the highest bridge in Asia. the bridge is built at a height of 13,596 ft. the bridge connects the village of Chicham with Kibber.

We will halt here for a night and acclimatize ourselves. It is advised to rest and acclimatize before you start the trek. The team goes for a short walk around the village to keep the body physically active. However, we suggest our participants not exhaust themselves.

The distance between Kaza and Chicham is around 19 km and is covered in less than an hour.

Day 3 : Chicham (14,000 ft.) to Thaltak Meadows (15,400 ft.)

After a well-rested day at Chicham, the team heads for Thaltak meadows. The distance of 8 km is trekked in 5-6 hours. The trail starts with a gradual walk and the route turns into a challenging trail when you start from Dumla campsite. You will walk on the steep ascent. The campsite at Thaltak meadow is an open clearing with barren mountains gazing at you. You will enjoy the thrilling view of Kanamo peak from Thaltak meadows.

Day 4 : Thaltak Meadows (15,400 ft.) to Borochin (16,400 ft.)

You will leave the campsite at Thaltak meadows and start for the next campsite at Borochin overlooking the Parang La. The trail today is a combination of steep descents, followed by a level walk on the river bed, and again steep ascents to reach the barren valley of Borochin. You will face some tricky rocky patches on the trail today. After walking for around 7-8 hours on a challenging trail Borochin welcomes you. The campsite has a small stream flowing nearby. From the campsite, you will see the Parang La Pass.

Day 5 : Borochin (16,400 ft.) to Kharsa Yongma (15,900 ft.) via Parang La (18,300 ft.)

Today, you will cross the highest point of your trek when you will be standing at Parang La. Situated at a staggering altitude of 5580 mt, the Pass offers a beautiful view of the Spiti and Changthang Valleys. Parilungi peak overlooks you from a distance when you stand at the pass.

The total distance of 14 km is covered in 8-10 hours. The trail today will test your physical preparedness. The day begins with a steep climb to the pass. After spending the splendid view from the Pass, you will start descending Parang la glacier. You have to be alert and careful while negotiating your path as there are few crevasses. The continuous descent on the glacier takes you to your next campsite at Kharsa Yongma.

Day 6 : Kharsa Yongma (15,900 ft.) to Kapapuche (15,400 ft.)

You will start your day from Kharsa early in the morning after breakfast. The distance to be covered today is approximately 20 km. You will walk on a mixed trail of some ascents and descents, and along the riverbed Today, you will struggle with the icy cold water as there are a few river crossings today.

Day 7 : Kapapuche (15,400 ft.) to Kitpodansa (14,900 ft.)

The day begins from Kapapuche after breakfast. The team heads to the next campsite at Kitpodansa. The majority of the trail today is along the riverbed. You will reach the campsite in the evening and halt for the night.

Day 8 : Kitpodansa (14,900 ft.) to Chumik Shilde (15,550 ft.)

Today, you will deal with the waist-high water of the Parechu river. The water is icy cold and the strong current makes it taxing to cross the river. The team finds a human shield to cross the Parechu river.

After you cross the river and continue for another few hours, you will be mesmerized by the contrasting change in the landscape. You will be welcomed by lush green meadows at Norbu Sumdo, a place where you enter the Ladakh region.

From Norbu Sumdo, the campsite is around 1 hour away. The campsite today will be amidst a lush green meadow.

Day 9 : Chumik Shilde (15,550 ft.) to Kiangdom Altitude (15,000 ft.)

The lush green valley of Chumik Shilde is left behind, and you start walking on leveled ground. The trail continues and you will get a sneak peek of some of the mountain peaks of the region. The landscape of Ladakh keeps you captivated till you get the first glimpse of Tso Moriri. The trail traverses through the southernmost tip of the pristine lake of Tso Moriri. You will reach the campsite of Kiangdom and rest for the night.

Day 10 : Kiangdom (15,000 ft.) to Karzok Altitude (15,100 ft.)

The pristine lake of Tso Moriri will keep you company most of the trail. The lake will be on your right side throughout, and the clear blue water of the lake keeps changing its color depending on the time of the day.

The trail of around 21 km today is covered in 7-8 hours. You will reach the beautiful village of Karzok on the bank of Tso Moriri in the evening. Karzok village has few houses and homestays and is a place to find ultimate solitude after the trek.

Day 11 : Drive from Karzok (15,100 ft.) to Leh (11,500 ft.)

Your Parangla Experience concludes today and you will bid adieu to this village of Karzok and head to Leh. Leh is around 240 km away from Karzok. If you wish to enjoy the exclusivity of nature, you can stay in the village for one more night and immerse yourself in the serenity all around.

Once you reach Leh, you can explore some of the famous monasteries and indulge in local delicacies in Leh market.

How to reach the basecamp of Parang La trek?

Parang La trek has two starting points – Spiti in Himachal Pradesh and Karzok village in Leh. The OWLS batches start from the Spiti side and cross to the Ladakh region. 

The basecamp of Parang La is Kaza. Kaza is a village in Spiti Valley, located 7-8 hours away from Manali. Perched at an elevation of 12,500 ft, Kaza is in the Trans-Himalayan region, the biggest and most developed town in the Spiti Valley of Eastern Himachal Pradesh. It takes 202 km of drive through the meandering hill roads and vast landscapes of Spiti Valley.

To reach Kaza, OWLS organises the transport from Manali at 6:00 AM from the Main Bus Stand, Rambagh Circle, Manali.

Here is a travel plan you can follow to reach Manali for OWLS pick-up

Travel Plan A – By Air to Chandigarh, followed by Road Journey to Manali

Day 0: Arrive in Chandigarh on Day 0 (refer to the itinerary) and take a bus to Manali from Sector 43. Look for a suitable hotel/hostel and stay overnight in Manali. 

Chandigarh to Manali distance is 307 km, and it takes 7 to 8 hours to cover the distance. 

Upon arriving at Chandigarh airport in the evening, you can catch one bus departing from the airport at 7:50 PM. Alternatively, you can head to Sector 43 and board a bus from there. If you prefer travelling by HRCT buses, two buses depart during the first half of the day. Additionally, evening buses are scheduled to leave around 6 PM and 8 PM.

If you want to travel by privately run buses, check out Red Bus or MakeMyTrip. Chandigarh to Manali bus fare ranges between Rs 500 to 1000. 

The fare for a 5-7 seater cab will be Rs. 15,000 per vehicle. The amount will be divided among the participants and paid directly to the driver.

Travel Plan B – By Air to Delhi followed by Road Journey to Manali

Day 0: If you fly to Delhi instead of Chandigarh, you can book an overnight bus to Manali from Delhi. New Delhi to Manali distance is approximately 600km, and it takes 12h to 14 hours to cover the distance. 

Remember to board a bus that arrives in Manali before 5:30 AM on Day 1 as the cab leaves the OWLS pick-up point at 6:00 AM. The second option is to arrive in Manali on Day 0 and stay here for a night. 

HRTC buses ply between Delhi and Manali every day from ISBT, Kashmiri Gate. Delhi to Manali bus will cost you anywhere between Rs.1000 – Rs.1600. The Volvo buses are on the higher side and comfortable for overnight journeys. Ordinary buses will cost you around Rs 800. 

Note – We recommend buses over different travel options at any time based on availability, time and cost.

 

Parang La Trek Map

Parang La Trek FAQ

How long is Parang La Trek

The total distance of the Parang La trek is 128 km. You walk an average of 7 – 8 hours daily. 

Is Parang La trek suitable for beginners?

Parang La is suitable for trekkers with prior trekking experience. If you are an absolute beginner and meet the physical fitness criteria, you can consider consulting our Outdoor Leader before booking the Parang La trek. 

How difficult is Parang La Trek?

The trek is categorised as challenging, considering the duration and altitude of Parang La.  

What will be the temperature in Parang La trek?

Parang La’s temperature ranges between 5 °C to 15 °C during the daytime in peak trekking season. 

You will deal with temperatures as low as -15°C to -20°C at night at higher altitudes in Parang La. 

Read more about Parang La temperature here

What is the best time to visit Parang La Trek?

The best time to visit Parang La trek is summer. Parang La remains accessible from June to September. 

Read more about the best time to visit Parang La trek. 

Will there be snow on Parang La trek?

Yes!

Yes. Parang La is a cross-over trek traversing the highlands of two Himalayan regions.  You will find snow in patches at the higher campsites.

What is the cost of Parang La trek?

 The Parang La  trek cost is Rs 35,499/-

 The trek cost covers your experience from basecamp to basecamp. 

What is the duration of the Parang La Trek?

It takes 10 days to complete the Parang La trek, including travel to and from the base camp.

What is the altitude of the Parang La trek?

The trek is at an altitude of 17,100ft. 

Where is Parang La Trek located?

Parang La Trek is a cross-over trek connecting the highlands of Spiti and Leh.

Where is Parang La Trek located?

Parang La Trek is a cross-over trek connecting the highlands of Spiti and Leh.

Where is the base camp of the Parang La trek?

The trek has two starting points. The trek can be attempted from Spiti in Himachal or Karzok village in Leh. The OWLS team starts from the Spiti side and crosses over to Ladakh.

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 Spiti. 

Will there be hot water facilities?

It is recommended to drink water from natural sources when acclimatizing to the temperature of the mountains. Since resources are limited at high altitudes, we do not provide hot water. However, during the winter months, when natural water sources freeze, we do provide water to our participants. Another reason for avoiding hot water on our trek is to prevent health issues such as diarrhoea.

Are there any ATMs at the base camp?

The last ATM will be in Leh/ Spiti. 

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.