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Old 19th March 2016, 09:14   #1
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Default Unforgettable Winter Kedarkantha Trek / Drive to Sankri

This is going to be more of a photologue of my recent trek to Kedarkantha. Being a driving buff, this outing was actually a long drive cum trek all packed into a short vacation.

Had 5 days off work from 27 Feb onwards. Had been planning for a trek for some time but somehow it never materialized. So was determined to do a trek within this short duration no matter what. Read about the Kedarkantha trek on various forums like indiamike, bcmtouring and devilonwheels etc and found out that its doable in 3 days. Also the trek is a round the year trek, with the added advantage of encountering some good amount of snow during this time of the year.

Spoke to a few companies that organize treks in this part of the world. None had any fixed departures planned from 27 Feb onwards. So decided to hire a guide and a porter / cook. Luckily found the contact details of two HIM trained (advanced mountaineering courses done) guides, who are actually brothers based at Sankri. Their contact details are as follows:-
Ramlal Panwar - 9411380818/9456196919
Meghraj Panwar - 9456335633/8979576098
(They have a website as well – www.trekthemountains.in

The Panwar brothers are experienced guides with good knowledge of the area. They can arrange for packaged treks where everything is arranged by them, or can also arrange for guides / cooks / porters / mules / camping & kitchen material on rent etc on a daily chargeable basis.

I chose to opt for the guide / cook option, chargeable on a daily basis. Found the rates to be reasonable (1000 per day for the guide, 700 per day for the cook). Had a tent and sleeping bags of my own. Rented the required kitchen utensils / stove etc.

My brother accompanied me on the trek. So it was the two of us + guide (Meghraj Panwar) and a cook who went up for the trek.


Travel / Drive up to Sankri

I am based at Delhi. Decided to drive up to Sankri, which is the starting point for the threk in my Scorpio. Researched the route and found the following to be the best bet from Delhi:-

Delhi – Panipat – Karnal – Ladwa – Yamunanagar – Paonta Sahib – Vikasnagar – Naugaon – Purola – Mori – Sankri.

From what I had read, I was expecting a 13-14 hours drive upto Sankri from Delhi. Started from Delhi at 0545 hrs on the 27th, and was able to hit Sankri by 1730 hrs. So it was an almost 12 hour drive with breaks for breakfast and lunch.

My 7 year / 95000 km run scorpio performed impeccably as ever. Must comment on the beautiful roads in Uttarakhand as well. Except for the last 25 odd km strech from Mori to Sankri, the roads were a dream to drive. Excellent Tarmac, winding roads and great views.

Upon crossing Mori, river & the forest provide a quintessential Himalayan landscape view.

Unforgettable Winter Kedarkantha Trek / Drive to Sankri-1.jpg

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Stay at Sankri

Stayed at Hotel Wild Orchid Inn at Sankri for the night. A good hotel with clean rooms, beds and bathroom. The hotel had round the clock electricity and running hot water (Solar heated). The charges were reasonable at Rs 800 per day (double bed room). Would recommend the hotel. Though food wasn’t available & had to eat outside in a dhaba.

The contact numbers are 941150044, 9410106868, 8126001666.

Website – www.wildorchidinn.com.


The Trek

Started the trek next day on the morning of 28th Feb at about 0900 hrs. Trek is normally done in 3 days, but is doable in 2 days as well. Due to time crunch I opted for 2 day trek with an overnight stay in base camp above Judi lake(midway).

I would advice to go for 3 day trek if you are not in the best possible physical shape or in case of lack of altitude acclimatization in case of irregular trekkers, as a 2 day trek with both ascent & descent can take a toll on your body.


So the bags are packed & the trek finally begins.

Unforgettable Winter Kedarkantha Trek / Drive to Sankri-01.jpg

Well we are not alone in our journey. The dogs in the village are more than eager to give company to bagpackers. Our guide told us she was a veteran of many a treks, even longer ones (6-7 days) in the surrounding areas.

Unforgettable Winter Kedarkantha Trek / Drive to Sankri-02.jpg


A solitary tree past its prime standing in its full glory.

Unforgettable Winter Kedarkantha Trek / Drive to Sankri-03.jpg

Harsh winter has removed the green cover from the trees.

Unforgettable Winter Kedarkantha Trek / Drive to Sankri-04.jpg

Juda lake(altitude 2850 m) – also one of the camping sites. We didn’t halt here though.

Unforgettable Winter Kedarkantha Trek / Drive to Sankri-05.jpg

Unforgettable Winter Kedarkantha Trek / Drive to Sankri-06.jpg

Last edited by nvldvr : 19th March 2016 at 13:35. Reason: Merging Posts
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Old 19th March 2016, 10:20   #2
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Default re: Unforgettable Winter Kedarkantha Trek / Drive to Sankri

Campsite for overnight stay. We had carried the tents, but there was a wooden shack built by the villagers where they keep their buffaloes in the summer for grazing. Made sort of bonfire in the small kitchen & it turned out to be much warmer & cosier option than the tents.

Vistas in and around the camp site.

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Next morning we started the ascent towards the peak. A picturesque wooden bridge appeared out of nowhere

Unforgettable Winter Kedarkantha Trek / Drive to Sankri-1.jpg

Snow is getting deeper & need to be careful and firm footed around the slope edges

Unforgettable Winter Kedarkantha Trek / Drive to Sankri-2.jpg

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Majestic peak up close

Unforgettable Winter Kedarkantha Trek / Drive to Sankri-11.jpg

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Finally arrived on top of the peak

Unforgettable Winter Kedarkantha Trek / Drive to Sankri-21.jpg

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Last edited by nvldvr : 19th March 2016 at 14:34. Reason: To merge posts
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Old 20th March 2016, 09:16   #3
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Default re: Unforgettable Winter Kedarkantha Trek / Drive to Sankri

Thread moved out from the Assembly Line (The "Assembly Line" Forum section). Thanks for sharing!

Truly an unforgettable winter! Must have been one amazing trek. In so many snaps, I saw dogs giving you company. For one moment I almost thought if you had taken your pet!

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Old 20th March 2016, 10:15   #4
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Default re: Unforgettable Winter Kedarkantha Trek / Drive to Sankri

Wow that is quite an adventure.

Sorry for hijacking your thread, I'll share a few pics from my Kedarkantha Trek during 15-19th Dec 2015. I guess the same doggie accompanied us as well.
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Old 20th March 2016, 12:57   #5
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Default re: Unforgettable Winter Kedarkantha Trek / Drive to Sankri

Quote:
Originally Posted by //M View Post
Wow that is quite an adventure.

Sorry for hijacking your thread, I'll share a few pics from my Kedarkantha Trek during 15-19th Dec 2015. I guess the same doggie accompanied us as well.
Hi M,

Good that you are sharing pics of your trek. The idea is to let more people know of such places and motivate people on the fringe to explore.

And that was not the same doggie who accompanied us. Although I did meet this fellow at Sankri. Big bulky guy who became my good friend after i fed him some bread and biscuits.

Regards.
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Old 20th March 2016, 23:33   #6
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Default re: Unforgettable Winter Kedarkantha Trek / Drive to Sankri

Quote:
Originally Posted by //M View Post
Wow that is quite an adventure.

Sorry for hijacking your thread, I'll share a few pics from my Kedarkantha Trek during 15-19th Dec 2015. I guess the same doggie accompanied us as well.

Which group did u use for trekking? I did the trek from 23-28 Dec 2015 with Indiahikes..will write a travelogue soon
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Old 21st March 2016, 09:24   #7
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Default Re: Unforgettable Winter Kedarkantha Trek / Drive to Sankri

Quote:
Originally Posted by mentalmaxout View Post
Which group did u use for trekking? I did the trek from 23-28 Dec 2015 with Indiahikes..will write a travelogue soon
We were a bunch of friends who did this on our own. No agency involved. It was basically a reunion with some friends coming in from abroad for a mutual friend's wedding in Delhi. Post the wedding, we just hired a Traveller to Sankri and then did this trek.

We did not involve any agency because one of my friend who was in this group was an ex-trek leader of India Hikes and had done Kedarkantha & Har Ki Dun multiple times. So with him on board, we didn't need any agency's support as he already knew the right people at the right places.

Plus doing a trek on your own adds to the charm and is more fun.
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