Kedartal Trek is a beautiful glacial lake located in the Garhwal Himalayas at 15,550 feet. Gangotri is the base for Kedartal. Gangotri to Kedartal is a distance of 36kms (to & fro). This trek is rated difficult due to its steep climbs, quick & forced ascends, tricky patches (Kedar ganga river crossing, climbing 55 to 60 degrees vertical rock face also termed as the spider-wall) and rapidly gaining altitude in a span of 3 days.
The views from the Kedartal Trek Uttarakhand are simply wonderful. We get up and close to some of the famous mountain peaks as Bhrigupanth (6,775 meters), Mt. Gangotri (6,578 meters), Bhagirathi (6512 meters), Mt. Manda (6,568 meters), Mt. Jogin (6,200 meters) and Mt. Thalaysagar (6,905 meters)Kedartal gets it’s water source from the snowfall over these mighty mountains. Kedartal is also known as Lord Shiva’s lake. It has relevance in the Hindu mythology aswell.
3 Hours Before Flight Time
Wemeet at a Dehradun at 6:30 am and from here we board the vehicle and drive up to Gangotri. This is a long beautiful drive as we enter the upper Bhagirathi valley. We check into a guesthouse/lodge at Gangotri and savor the spectacular surroundings. We visit the Gangotri temple in the evening and the neighboring market.
Today we step out today for an acclimatization walk. We visitGaurikund, Surya Kund, Pandavgufa and explore the local area.
Later in the evening we prepare for our trek.
Our trek route begins once we cross the Bhagirathi river. The route ascends crossing the GMVN lodge along with a few Ashrams on our right. This is a very common route for Bhojkharak. It is steep throughout and is physically challenging.The majestic view of Mt. Thalaysagar is a motivation. We trek through many Bhojpatra trees on the way.
We cross through a couple of steep climbs over the a few steep rock faces. They are as steep as 55 to 60 degrees, hence are termed as “Spider-wall”. Climbing over these patches offers a very narrow trail, and can be negotiated by one person at one time. Our campsite for the day is a 15mins walk from here.
Our trek for today is comparatively less strenuous compared to our previous day. We start with a steep ascend for 1km leaving the tree line, and enter into the meadows. After this, we get gradual ascends that are pretty relaxing. If we are luck, we get to spot Bharals (blue sheep) along with a few Himalayan birds. Our muscles that were sore, will feel relieved by the end of today’s trek as we cross the Kedar Ganga river.We enjoy the sunset this evening and relax well so thatwe are prepared for our next day’s difficult climb.
We prepare ourselves for the tough climb over rocks towards the Kedar Tal. We ensure to carry both the 2 litres of water along and do not miss the dry rations given by the guides/ leads as we will need them on our trek for the day. It is important to start on the time given by the trek guides and leads. The weather at these altitudes along with the surroundings can change instantly. It will take 5 to 6 hours to do this. The route is a steep climb all throughout. On reaching the top, we see the amazing colors of the Kedar Tal. On a clear day, we get the clear reflection of the mighty Mt. Thalaysagar in the Tal. We descend one last time to get to the Tal.
This entire descend is rewarding as we get astounding views of Mt. Gangotri, Bhrigupanth, Bhagirathi, Mt. Manda, Mt. Jogin and Mt. Thalaysagar. We set camp right next to the Tal and enjoy the stunning views of these mighty peaks, so close.
We retrace our steps back the same route. As we had taken this route while coming to Kedarkharak, we have an idea about the route. It would take us roughly 9 hours to get to Gangotri. We loose a little over 3000 feet altitude that has steep descends so we need to ensure to be careful.
On reaching Gangotri we have our closing ceremony.
We drive back to Dehradun from Gangotri after breakfast. We plan to reach Dehradun by 7pm.