One of the best treks in India Kedarkantha is a fun winter trek that takes the seriousness out of trekking. It is almost like going on a 5-day active vacation. The trek is recommended for all adventure souls who like snow and high mountains, irrespective of the prior experience. Beginners are more than welcome. Kedarkantha Trek starts from Sankri in Uttarakhand which is one of the best trekking places in India. The highlights of Kedarkantha trek are the beautiful campsites, snow-covered pine forests, 360-degree view of the mountains and the chance to stand on top of one of the easiest trekkable peaks in the Himalayas. The total Kedarkantha trek distance is 23 Kms. The height of the Kedarkantha peak is 12,500 ft. You will get to see Godly peaks like Swargarohini, Black Peak, and Bandarpoonch during Kedarkantha and come back absolutely thrilled and refreshed.
Day 1: Dehradun to Sankri (6,500 ft) by drive.
Arrive in Sankari by your own or If you opt for transportation from us then we will assemble early morning (7 AM) in Dehradun ISBT and drive towards Sankri. Overnight in a guest house/hotel in Sankri. Sankri is a small village in Uttarakhand located at a distance of 210 km from Dehradun. Sankri is quite a popular trailhead as a lot of treks start from here like - Har Ki Dun, Bali pass, Borasu Pass, Ruinsara Tal, Baraadsar lake.
On this day, begin your trek from Sankri to Juda Ka talab. Your trek leaders will provide you with spikes and gaiters before you start and give you a demonstration of how to wear them. You will have to cover a total of 4 km of distance today. The trail starts in a beautiful pine forest, just a short 10 minutes walk away from the village. The gradient of the trail is easy, ascending all the way to Juda Ka Tal campsite. You will make your ascent gradually, walking at a steady pace in a zigzag manner. It’s hard to come across wildlife on this trek during winters, but as you walk along the pine trees, keep an eye out for woodpeckers. They are quite common in this region. Mid-way the forest clears up to a large meadow, where you’ll see two small tea huts that serve omelets, Maggie, and hot beverages. You can have your packed lunch here. The campsite is just an hour away from this point, and as you gain altitude, you’ll start seeing the beautiful Himalayan ranges in the background. The most prominent peaks that you’ll see throughout the trek is Swargarohini, try to spot it along the way. By early afternoon you’ll be at the first campsite of Kedarkantha trek. Camp overnight at Juda Ka talab.
The gradient of the trail today is a bit steeper than yesterdays. You continue to walk in a pine forest which opens up to a beautiful meadow an hour later. Sometimes your trek leaders take up the opportunity to teach you ascending and descending techniques on the snow slopes here. It should take you about 2-3 hours to reach your next campsite, which is absolutely stunning. At night, the snow-clad mountain peaks shine brightly as the moon, and you will clearly see Kedarkantha Peak from your campsite. After an early dinner, try to get a good night’s sleep as you have to start early before sunrise. Pack your daypack with the necessary items like waterproof gloves, water bottle, snacks, and your camera before you sleep. You can leave your backpacks inside your tent and collect them after returning from the Kedarkantha summit. Camp overnight at Kedarkantha base camp.
The fourth day of the trek is for the summit to Kedarkantha Peak. You need to hike an elevation of 1,250 ft. The schedule of the day includes hiking to Kedarkantha peak and then again descending back till Hargaon camp which is based at 8900 feet. It is a long day but the excitement of the journey and conquering the peak would be far greater and much more worthy in comparison to the challenges that lay ahead for the visitors. The day will be starting earlier than usual. You must start before sunrise so that snow is cold and hard enough to not get tangled in it. But this is not the only reason why you should start before the sun is out. As you climb towards the summit, the sun will be coming out creating a magical scenario. The final climb to the summit of Kedarkantha can be a bit demanding but the views and the excitement of summiting a Himalayan peak can make you overcome all the obstacles and motivate you to keep going and going till you are not on the top. The view of the Kedarkantha peak while climbing up from meadows at base camp is truly a divine and pure experience. At the top of the peak there is a beautiful yet small temple dedicated to Lord Shiva and goddess Parvati. There is a small shrine of Lord Ganesh too. The arresting 360 view of the snow clad peaks of Uttarakhand is intoxicating and beyond words to be penned down. One can relax at the top for some time and enjoy the magical beauty of nature and then descend towards base camp by noon time. After reaching the camp take a break for lunch and refreshments. Once relaxed, set out for descending furthermore to Hargaon camp. Overnight stay in Hargaon campsite.
The day has come when you must say goodbye to the majestic Himalayan wilderness and head back to Sankri, leaving behind the adventure, thrill, and serendipity of being among mountains. Today you will have to cover around 6 km before you can reach Sankri village.
Sankri is just like any mountain village with a temple, old wooden house with corrugated roof and lads messing around or playing cricket nearby temple. Sidri has one unique feature in feathers, it is located between two roads, each on either side of the village. The lower road connects to the Sankri but the upper road connects to both Sankri and Khotghoan.
The last day of the trip is the departure day where you need to travel back to Dehradun. The distance takes about 10 hours to reach excluding the break times so the earlier one starts it's always the better.
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