Chopta Chandrashilla Trek

31 Jul

Chopta Chandrashilla Trek



Chopta Chandrashila Deoriatal is a window into Himalaya’s spring color vibrancy. A well-loved trek for mountain goers of all kinds, this trek flourishes with blossoms, especially rhododendrons red and pink, in summer time while winters are a hazy shade with enough scopes to have a ball in spilling snow. The whole tour covers a swoop to the Chandrashila Peak, passing by the enchanting Deoriatal lake side, and opens up a gallery of stunning snow peaks all the way. This 6-day plan is unmatched in nature’s beauty, exhilarating challenges, time-efficiency and convenience. The highlights of the trek range from awe-inspiring summit views to warmth of the forest greens, piquing up interests in all sorts of mountain lovers. You could be a nature treasurer, bird watching amateur, or a shutterbug with a dream of capturing the drama in the highlands, Chopt-Chandrashila-Deorital is a trek for all and fails none.

The first big stop on the trek comes with Deoriatal. Situated at a good height of 7, 841 feet, the lake is gripped with forests all around. At a short distance ahead, the Chaukhamba massif glistens and the reflection of it is caught in the crystal-like waters of the lake. The effect is striking. The site is steeped in myths. As goes the story, the five pandava brothers from the Mahabharata, once thirsty, had come to the waters of Deoriatal and faced a test of wisdom. Camping here the first night under a stardusted sky makes the mellowest of memories on a trek. Next up on the line of visual ecstasies are the extensive meadows that turn to snow fields along the way to Chopta. As one furthers up the trail, great peaks jump to view—Bandarppoonch, Kedar, and Chaukhamba to name a few. These stellar features of Garhwal Himalayas promise to get more elucidated from the zenith of Chandrashila, so the motivation is never lost and one goes on until the end of the summit stretch at the Tunganath temple.

Whom Is This Trek Meant For?
Chopta-Chandrashila-Deoriatal trek is graded easy in comparison to other Himalayan treks. Beginning trekkers and children are welcome to take this trek and remains equally interesting for advanced trekkers. Special shout out goes to those hunting for striking visual compositions with varying colorscapes.
• Anyone above the age of 9 with normal fitness
• Beginners with proactive understanding of fitness and challenges of the wild
• Anyone who has prepared by our exercise chart for easy treks.

To thorough nature lovers, we will recommend the trek from season to season. The delights of the summer absolutely transforms into something else in the winters, you mustn’t miss!

Brief Itinerary

Day 1: Drive Haridwar-Sari 
Pick Up Point- Haridwar Railway Station
Pick Up Time- 6:00 am
Distance- 190 km
Driving Time- 7 hour
Altitude- 6,600 ft
Network Availability- Available till Sari

Day 2: Trek to Deoriatal 
Distance- 3 km
Trekking Time- 1 hour
Altitude- 7,800 ft.
Water source-None.

Day 3: Deoriatal to Chopta through Rohini Bugyal
Distance- 14 km
Trekking Time- 7-8 hours
Altitude at Chopta-8,700 ft
Water source- A ground water source before entering Rohini Bugyal. Waterfalls on the second half of the trail.

Day 4: Chopta circuit
Trekking Time- 3 hours
Altitude- 8800 ft.
Water source- None
Peaks visible- Mount. Chaukhamba and Kedar peaks

Day 5: Chopta to Tungnath,Chandrashilla Top and back to Chopta
Distance- 8 km
Trekking Time- 7-8 hour
Altitude- 13,100 ft.
Water Source- None
View: Mountains of Garhwal and Kumaon- Nanda Devi, Trishul, Nandaghunti, Kamet, Dronagiri, Chaukhamba, Kedar dome, Thalaysagar, Gangotri ranges, Jahanukut etc.

Day 6: Chopta to Haridwar (Drive 7 hours)
Drop Off Point-Haridwar Railway station
Distance- 210 km
Time- 7 hour; destination to be reached around 6:30 pm

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Drive Haridwar-Sari 
Our tour guides will expect you at Haridwar railway station at 6:30 in the morning today. You can arrange an overnight bus journey from Delhi, reaching Haridwar in the morning or reach a couple of days earlier to the starting day of the trek. Haridwar-Rishikesh by the Ganges is a famous site on the pilgrim trail of Uttarakhand. You can spend your time in Rishikesh immersing in cultural activities and adventure sports in the choppy waters of Ganga. We can pick you up alternatively from Rishikesh as well.
From this point to Sari village is a journey of 7-8 hours. Take in the beautiful vista of lower Garhwal Himalayas as the drive turns uphill. The most picturesquely notable stop on the way will be at Devaprayag- a town marking the gorgeous confluence of Alakananda and Bhagirathi. The river will keep you company throughout, reaching you at Sari by 6:00 in the evening. The village is a pretty picture composed of little houses sketched across a mountain backdrop and lined with green patches of agricultural fields. If you are missing any minor requisite for the journey ahead, visit the market area in Sari, just might find something useful!

Day 2: Trek to Deoriatal
The trek on the first day is easy with mixed ascent and descent. A well-defined rocky trail will show you to the end, from where the Chandrashila summit is clearly visible and the Tunganath temple is a speck of color. After this point, it’s a steep uphill bend on the ridge back of the mountain. Get ready for an acutely laborious climb, giving you the first taste of challenge. Soon, you will reach the Forest Department built resting stop. Clocked timely by your Trek Leader, you can afford a 20 minutes break here. An excellent view the way of the mountain fall waits here.
Post-rest, the trail will bend through a forest of rhododendrons. Spring treks here in the crimson shadow rhododendron blossoms make it memorable more than ever. We go steadily up. At 7, 434 ft. village localities vanish from sight. Nearly 20 minutes from this point, we will be standing with the waters of Deoriatal glistening down a lurching gentle slope.
A grand vista of Chaukhamba massifs is unveiled in the background of the lake. It will be mid-noon by the time you reach the spot. Wait for the morning when the cloud cover lifts and a diamond-crushed sunlight elucidate the outlines of Chaukhamba, making for the ultimate striking frame. Having the entire day to yourself, explore the deep nooks of the forests lying out around, a paradise for bird-watcher’s and nature lovers. Hot lunch on this day will be served on reaching our lakeside camp in Deorital.

Day 3: Deoriatal to Chopta through Rohini Bugyal 
Today’s trail will familiarize you more with the Chaukhamba massif and Mount Kedar summit, rising closely as you process. Rhododendron and maples eclipse the forest path, spreading a cool and rejuvenating vibe. In these thickets you will find two prominent varieties of rhododendrons—red and pink, the concentration of them thickens as you move pass the first forest stretch.
The trail is sprinkled with little shrines that stand out in the greenness by the red and yellow flags tied on them. After crossing a clearing in the forest lined with scarlet blossoms, we are directly ushered up an ascending path towards Rohgini Bugyal and Chopta. The ascending trail gives way to a level land and some leeway in the rigorous uphill hike. A resplendent view of the Chandrashila awaits on the other side of the forest margin. After the level-land, you will have to re-enter the forest now characterized with old oaks and maple besides the rhododendrons. This forms part of the Kedarnath Sanctuary, and with some luck, trekkers can spot red fox and other small wild things.
More 25 minutes of trekking in the Kedarnath Sanctuary trail and you will reach the Bhagdwal temple. This is a junction point for three trek routes. One connects to Sari village, another towards Ukhimath, and the central one descending to the meadows of Rohini Bugyal. Along this line, Chandrashila and flanked by the adjoining Kala Parvat Peak gain prominence. You can find the way bending from here to Bisuri Tal lake and a small tarn named Nandikund, situated at the base of Kala Parvat. Further down as you progress, a silvery rivulet coming from Chandrashila meets your way. Here, you can fill your water supplies and move on taking a small wooden bridge on the stream.
A little way up, the meadows start. Here, you will find a cluster of huts. Shepards from local villages come here to graze their livestock. Not far from here, you will find a road head at the margin of a jungle trail. In this area in the vicinity of Chopta village, we have our campsite at a clearing in the forests.

Day 4: Chopta circuit
Today, we do not proceed. Reserving this day for rest and wildlife exploration, we set out early morning for a nature walk inside Chopta forests. There’s a big chance of spotting deers fleeting through the woods. Look out for the exquisite musk deer and a bulkier variety of barking deer. Among birdlife, you will find the gorgeous Monal. This is the state bird of Uttarakahnd- known for its color blend of shinning blue and emeralds. You can opt for hot lunch at the camp as well as packed lunch for a little picnic in the woods. Decision will be taken according to consensus among group members.

Day 5: Chopta to Tungnath, Chandrashilla Top and back to Chopta 
We commence the hike today early morning. Starting in the wee hours of dark will let us have a beautiful sunrise experience from Tunganath top. The trek runs on a well-defined concrete-bound trail from Chopta to the temple. Today,the hike will be fraught with steep climbing challenges with sharp turns to cross by. There will be other shrines on the way, of which a particular temple with a flagpole is notable. This one comes after the 10th bend of the road and marks the opening of a splendid view of Chandrashila up ahead. From here, you will also get a clear vision of a connecting peak to Chandrashila. This one is named Ravanshila.
In the winters, you will find snow from here. The 11th bend marks the entryway to Tunganath above which the splendid Chandrashila peak towers at 12, 083 ft. The route to the peak bends from behind the temple complex. Beware of thick snow on this summit stretch after December till the end of April. Crampons and gaiters are highly recommended for the snow climb and your trek lead is expected top make the path through the cover of snow sludge with the help of an ice axe.
At the end of a steep and arduous climb, the summit will be reached with a 360 degree view of the Garhwal and Kumaon mountains welcomingly lying ahead. Notable peaks in this panorama of grandeur are—Nanda Devi, Trishul, Nandaghunti, Dronagiri, Chaukhamba, and Kedar. Glimpses of the Thalaysagar and Gangotri ranges too could be made out at the edges.
The downhill journey is relatively less time consuming and smoother. It will take you about 3 hours to climb down to the Chopta campsite.

Day 6: Chopta to Haridwar 
A ride back from the Chopta road head to Haridwar is scheduled for day 6. After this 7 hour journey full of mellow reminisces of the hills, you will be reaching Haridwar in the evening. An overnight journey to Delhi will hopefully work out best.

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