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12 days trekking tour from Spiti Valley to Ladakh

Tsomoriri See

Lake Tsomoriri

A few days ago I returned to Manali safe and healthy from my longest and highest trek yet!
It was a unique experience and I had become very accustomed to the seclusion and solitude of trekking! I enjoyed that for almost two weeks nothing else was important but to walk, eat, sleep and only be in contact with the other trekkers!
The twelve-day trek from the village of Kibber in Spiti to Lake Tso Kar in Ladakh is at an altitude of over 4000 meters all the time. For days we were above 4700 meters. We crossed a total of 8 passes in three weeks, three of them by car (Rothang, Kunzum and Tanglang), the five others on foot, the highest of them was the 5578 meter high Parang La! For this trek, therefore, a good acclimatization to the height was a prerequisite!
But now from the beginning:
Our tour started in Manali. From here we took the jeep across the poorly developed and adventurous road into the Spiti valley. We stayed in Spiti for four days. Both to visit the well-known ancient Buddhist monasteries and to adapt to the altitude on acclimatization tours. For two nights we lived in a homestay in the 4200 meter high village of Kibber.

Im Dorf Kibber in Spiti auf 4200 m

In the village of Kibber in Spiti at 4200 m

From here our trek started. Our group consisted of six Australians between the ages of 50 and 60, 11 load horses, two horsemen, a cook, a helper, a guide and me!
The first three days up to Parang La Pass were the most strenuous! On the first day we went up to 4700 m, on the second to the base camp at 5100 m and on the third we crossed the 5578 m high pass. During the three-day ascent, we went down again and again for a few hundred meters in deep gorges, from which we had to climb up  again!
The greater was the happiness of having climbed the pass. On all our pass days, the weather always showed itself from all sides: sunshine, alternated with rain and even snow, often accompanied by strong winds! Up here we became aware of the power and arbitrariness of nature!
The descent from the pass over the glacier was a real experience!

Es geht über Gletscher Eis

It goes over glacier ice

For the next three days, the trek became much easier. Most of the time the route was always along the Pare Chu River. We have to cross it and some of it’s side arms a few times until we turned  into the green side valley of the Norbu Sumdo area. Here we enjoyed a rich wildlife! Countless birds, wild horses and small marmots met us.
Then we finally reached the indescribably beautiful azure Tsomoriri lake, where we had a day of rest! We bathed, enjoyed the peace and the good food prepared by our chef!
After the rest day, the next day of trekking was difficult for us. Although it was just off along the 24 km long lake, the heat and the sand made it very difficult. All the happier we were, when we reached the village of Korzak. For many other trekking groups, the tour normally ends here. Not so for us!

Unsere Trekker am fünften Tag!

Our trekkers on the fifth day!

After exploring the small village, the next day we set off for another 5400 metre pass, the Yalungnyaula. A great climb with great views of Lake Tsomoriri.
The next three days were constantly ups and downs! Until we reached the small salt lake Tso Kar, we crossed three more passes, all around 5000 meters high!
However, not the passes, but the acquaintance to the nomads who live here, made these three days so eventful! We met shepherds who introduced us to the art of stone slinging, women who milked their yaks, and old men who showed us their comfortably furnished tented accommodations!
Finally at Lake Tsokar after 12 days of trekking, we went by jeep to Leh! On the way we visited the great Thikse monastery.
In Leh we all took a shower, enjoyed Tibetan and Indian food and went on a shopping tour!
An all-round great tour, full of culture, nature, movement and great encounters! Thank you for that!