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Trekking

 
The main hindrance in trekking in this region is due to cold waves and snow i.e. extreme wintry conditions. For trekking in Ladakh, one has to be physically fit and prepared to face the rigors of back country travel as well. The fluctuations in the day and night temperature takes its toll. The best season to go on trekking expeditions in this region is between July and September.

Trekking possibilities include short, day-long walks or long mountain treks involving weeks of walking and camping in the wilderness. Depending upon the time and budget, tourist offices at Leh, Kargil or Padum can design trekking programmes for you. But the easiest way to go on trek is through a travel agency, which will take care of all arrangements including camping gear, provisions, porter age, staff and all other matters. Making your own arrangements is not recommended. The Ladakh environment is inhospitable and ecologically very fragile, it is advisable to take as much provision and fuel as possible from the base camp.

While the days are pretty warm, even hot due to the desert effect of the barren landscape, evenings can become chilly. It is advisable to keep a pullover handy. A sturdy pair of shoes with strong rubber or synthetic soles, thick cotton socks & a good sleeping bag together with an insulated ground pad are essential gear for going on a trek. A water-proof tent along with all provisions & cooking gear, all backpacked in a rucksack are must for longer treks. Additional requirements are a balacava, wollen undergarments, wind parkas, toiletries & first-aid including lip-salve, moisturizers & sun cream, water-purifying tablets, medicines for high-altitude sickness, etc. A good quality canteen to carry drinking water is most essential in the arid conditions. Do not forget to carry a flashlight with sufficient batteries, a sun-hat & a pair of sunglasses with UV-filter.

Some Trekking routes :

The trek from Lamayuru in the Indus valley to Darcha in Lahoul across Zanskar takes nearly three weeks. The 10 day Markha Valley trek and the 11 day Lamayuru-Padum traverse and the Stok-Khangiri round trek are the most popular treks. In the late autumn season treks like Hemis-Markha-Padum, a 13 day trek becomes operational. This trek is not suitable for the summers.