Trekking through the white world of snow is an enchanting yet thrilling thing to do in the mighty Himalayas. States like Uttarakhand, and Himachal Pradesh host the best winter treks in India. Moreover, when it comes to Jammu and Kashmir, the state never leaves any stone unturned to impress with its serene beauty. The states of North East witness cold as well to host popular winter treks like Goecha la Pass trek. The winter treks offer amazing scenery for you to witness. When trekking during the winters, chances are there that you walk even on a frozen lake that flourishes during the summers. Walking on glaciers, snow fields, rugged terrain, snow ridges, and dense forests with no sign of sunlight is a thrilling experience for the heart of adventurers. Besides the trail, the jaw-dropping temperatures reach below minus degrees celsius to offer an extra level of thrill. Hiking through such conditions is a powerful thing but needs to be cared for. To sustain winter treks, you must carry thermals to keep yourself warm all the time. Moreover, prior training is needed as you need to perform strenuous climbs. Another beautiful thing about winters is that you can catch the beautiful sight of snow beings like Snow Leopards moving around freely.
The best winter treks in India start from various locations in India like Uttrakhand, Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Ladakh, Sikkim, Meghalaya, and many more places. These winter treks happen mostly towards the end of the year or starting of the new year. Trekking trails witness cold temperatures. Some of the treks like the Chadar trek of Ladakh give you an opportunity to walk on the frozen river. Many of these winter treks aim to provide you with the beauty of snow, glaciers, and alpine lakes. There are many popular winter treks in India like Brahmatal Trek. The trek lets you witness the alpine lakes of Brahmatal and Bekatlal at a high altitude. Kedartal Trek is one of the most applauded winter treks that take you through the “Spider Web” trail. Some other popular winter treks are Goecha La Pass Trek, Kedarkantha trek, Tungnath trek and Chandrashila trek, etc.
A classic winter trek, Brahmatal Trek brings you to the alpine Brahmatal Lake at a height of 12,618 feet in the Himalayas. This intermediate-level hike will take you past mountains blanketed with snow and through rich rhododendron forests. You can catch the beautiful sight of the unusual brown Bekatlal Lake. Once you get to the peak, Mt. Trishul and Mt. Nanda Ghunti are visible in the breathtaking views.
The Chadar Lake trek is one of the most unique winter treks in India that lets you walk on the frozen Zanskar River, which is a once-in-a-lifetime event. This is one of the most difficult hikes because of the harsh cold, with nighttime temperatures dropping to -25 to -30 degrees Celsius at an altitude of 11,123 feet. Despite snow-covered peaks, you can witness Nerak's frozen waterfalls.
The Goecha La Trek brings you to a maximum altitude of 16,200 feet in the Sikkim sky to enjoy Mount Kanchenjunga's beauty. The difficult and long walk takes up to 11 days to complete 14 climbs to reach the top. The trek's highlights include Samiti Lake, Kanchenjunga National Park, and the vistas of Mt Pandim.
The picturesque Kedarkantha Trek takes you through the dense pine trees of Govind National Park to a height of 12,500 ft and gets completely coated in a pristine wonderland of snow. Beginning in Sankri Village, the 6-day journey takes you across the lovely alpine lake Juda ka Talab and provides you with stunning views of Mount Bandarpoonch, Mount Kala Naag, Mount Swargarohini, and Mount Ranglana, among other mountains.
Kuari Pass Trek is among the best winter treks in India that takes you to a remarkable elevation of 12,516 feet through dense forests of Conifer, Oak, Birch, and Rhododendrons. The forest trail may provide opportunities for close encounters with Leopard pugs and Himalayan black bears. When you reach the peak, you can see Mount Nanda Devi and the summits of Dronagiri, Chitrakantha, Tali Top, and Chaukhamba.
The spectacular Har Ki Dun Trek takes you up to a height of 11,675 feet above sea level where you can admire the beauty of the Swargarohini peaks. The trekking route is renowned because the Pandavas traveled it to reach heaven. Starting from Sankari Village, you can travel through the vast Deodar Tree forests, lushest meadows, alpine lakes, and rhododendron woods in the 7-day trek.
Nag Tibba is a short two-day and one-night journey to Uttrakhand's highest peak. After ascending 9914 feet into the Himalayan skies over dense forest trails, you may embark on a guided tour of Nag Tibba Village and its surrounding attractions. The spectacular views of Gangotri Peaks and Kedarnath Peak are readily visible from Nag Tibba.
The Tungnath- Chandrashila Trek is one of the religious winter treks in India that leads you to the world's highest Shiva temples over a breathtaking journey of forests, meadows, and snow fields. The route climbs past Rohini Bugyal Village and the Kedarnath Wildlife Sanctuary. After seeking the blessings from the temple, you can take a 1.5 km ascent to Chandrashila Peak. The high-altitude mountain offers stunning views of Mount Nanda Devi, Mount Trishul, and Mount Chaukhamba.
The Dayara Bugyal Trek is all about reaching the 12,000-foot alpine meadow and admiring the beauty of Himalayan peaks such as Bandarpoonch, Kala Naag, Srikhand Mahadev, and Gangotri. It is an amazing weekend hike that begins in Barsu and covers a distance of 29 kilometers. The trail winds through steep valleys blanketed with snow.
The Sandakphu Trek is a long hike that takes you to witness the "Sleeping Buddha" mountain group. This is popularly known as "Trekker's Wonderland" in the hiking world as it brings you to a height of 11,930 feet to witness panoramic views. The hike takes you to Singalila National Park and the lush forests of Rhododendrons in bloom. The picturesque walk leads you to a high-altitude pond known as "Kalapokhri."
The main goal of the Prashar Lake Trek is to explore the best parts of the Dhauladhar Range. Counted among the best winter treks in India, the two-day journey begins at Jwalapur Village and travels along a picturesque path lined with lush vegetation, flowing rivers, and waterfalls. On the banks of the captivating river, you can see the Pagoda-style Prashar Rishi Temple. At the elevation of 8,956 feet near the lake, you can see the Pir Panjal and Kinnaur Mountain Ranges.
The Snow Leopard trek in Ladakh is about witnessing the Snow Leopards, who live 9,842 feet above the ground in the highlands of Leh. The 8-day adventure takes you to the Markha and Rumbak Valleys. In these valleys, you can drink tea with the inhabitants and discuss snow creature folklore. You get closer to Hemis National Park, which is home to the majority of snow leopards.
The 5-day Auli Trek starts from Haridwar through the coniferous, and oak forests along the Alaknanda Valley. You can take a cable car ride and watch the beautiful sight of Gorson and Auli Meadow. During your trek, you can explore the Parsari Village and get to know the mountain culture. Upon reaching the Auli Summit, you can witness the delightful vistas of Mount Nanda Devi.
Malana Trek is listed among the easy winter treks in India that let you explore the Malana Village and Chandrakhani Pass. The 6-day trek lets you take a guided tour of the main attractions of Malana like Gowrishankar Temple, Art Gallery, Tripura Sundari, and many more places. The beautiful views of Mount Deo Tibba, Friendship Peak, and Ali Ratna are visible from the village.
Panwali Kantha is the greenest meadow of the Garhwal Range nestled at a height of 11,500 ft. This trek starts from Rishikesh and Guttu is the base camp. From Guttu, you trek through one of the most beautiful trails to Gourmande. The next day's trail is a combination of snow and greenery to reach the Panwali Kantha meadow. After enjoying the beauty of rare Char Dhaam ranges, you can end your 4-day short trek.
Which are the best winter treks in India?
Brahmatal Trek: A classic winter trek, Brahmatal TrekF brings you to the alpine Brahmatal Lake at a height of 12,618 feet in the Himalayas. You get to witness brown lake Bekatlal, rhododendron forests, and the beauty of snow-covered Mount Nanda Ghunti and Mount Trishul from the top.
Chadar Trek: The Chadar Lake trek is the perfect snow trek in India that lets you walk on the frozen Zanskar River. This is one of the most difficult hikes because of the harsh cold weather, with nighttime temperatures dropping to -25 to -30 degrees Celsius at an altitude of 11,123 feet.
Panpatia Col Trek: The panpatia col trek takes you to a whopping altitude of 17,257 ft to witness the Panpatia Col glacier through snow fields and moraines. At the endpoint of the trek, you reach the Panpatia high pass that connects Badrinath and Kedarnath. You can witness the beauty of the mighty mountains of Nanda Devi, Nilakantha, Kunaling, Balakun, and Chaukhamba from Panpatia Col .
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What are the offbeat treks to do in Winter?
What are the things to consider while planning winter treks in India?