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Top 10 Treks of Kumaon Himalayas

The kaleidoscopic Kumaon known for its Herculean maze of mountains, the gentle rivers, vegetation, and the Himalayan wildlife makes the trekking worthwhile in this elusive Himalayan division of Uttarakhand. The region offers several trekking expeditions to those willing to chase the unexpected, from the famous treks to the lesser-known treks of Kumaon Himalayas; you can behold the magic of the Grecian hills that summons for a voyage. To check out some of the best treks of Kumaon that can be easily undertaken by the beginners as well as the experienced trekkers, you go through the detailed info given below.

1. Milam Glacier

 Nishchay Tewari
Milam Glacier

One of the fathomed yet accessible glaciers of Uttarakhand, the Milam Glacier trek is a gateway to the mystique of Uttarakhand. To set your foot on this diverged trekking route, you need to start from Munsiyari which is the base camp for this trek. Situated at the base of Mount Trishuli (7,065 meters), Milam glacier is the largest glacier of Kumaon covering an area of 37 square km. It is perched at an altitude of 3,438 meters and lies 60 km beyond Munsiyari. This 114 km trek can be completed within 11 days. The trail to Milam glacier passes through the thick woodlands, remote villages, waterfalls, icy paths and old wooden bridges that need to be crossed. The glacier offers a spellbinding view of Hardeol (7,151 m), Mangraon (6,568 m), Deo Damla (6,637 m) and Sakram (6,254 m) peaks.

2. Pindari Glacier Trek

 Photo by Andy Rawat (facebook)
view of snow capped mountain peak at Pindari Glacier

Nestled in the Bageshwar district of Uttarakhand, the Pindari glacier seated between the snow-shrouded Nanda Devi and Nanda Kot mountains have lured several mountaineers to throng here since the last century. A brisk 10 days trek starting from Loharkhet will make you conquer the glacier. Situated at an altitude of 3,353 meters above sea level, the Pindari glacier trek traverses along the southern wilderness of the Nanda Devi Sanctuary offering invigorating views of majestic peaks like Panwalu Dwar (6,683 m) and Maiktoli (6,803 m).

3. Kafni Glacier Trek

 Wikipedia : Anuragkjain
Kafni Glacier

The moderate to difficult Kafni glacier trek starts from the tiny hamlet of Loharkhet in Bageshwar district. Tucked away at an altitude of 3,860 meters above sea level, the Kafni Glacier is situated to the right of Pindari glacier. The trek route to Kafni glacier and Pindari glacier is the same until Diwali. While the trail to Kafni Glacier diverts from Dwali. The majestic Kafni glacier is situated 12 km beyond Diwali. It is an exquisite and untouched place situated on the east side of Pindar Valley, in the footsteps of Nanda Kot peak. The region is blessed with exotic flora and fauna. The trek to Kafni glacier is visually appealing and ends up at the foot of Nanda Kot Parbat at 6,860 meters.

4. Sunderdhunga Valley Trek

Sunderdhunga Trek

Nicknamed as 'The Valley of Stones', the Sunderdhunga Valley trek is relatively difficult than Pindari and Kafni Glacier trek. The colossal Sunderdhunga valley lies on the right side of Pindar valley in the Bageshwar district. The eminent glaciers of this valley are Maiktoli and Sukhram. This 104 km moderate trek blesses you with the views of snow-capped Mrigthuni (6,856 m), Maiktoli (6,803 m), Panwalidwar (6,663 m) and Tharkot (6,100 m). The trek to Sunderdhunga goes through Jaitoli, Dudhia Dhaung, and Kathalia. This buoyant trek begins at Loharkhet and can be completed within 8-9 days.

5. Adi Kailash Trek

A replica of Mount Kailash in Tibet, Adi Kailash is also known as 'Chota Kailash' or 'Little Kailash' is situated in the Indian Territory, within the proximity of the Indo-Tibetan border. Perched high at 5,945 meters, Adi Kailash is known for offering an exhilarating trekking expedition to the mountain lovers. The prolong 18 km trek meanders through the dazzling Darma, Bryans, and Chaundans Valley. One can admire the grandeur of the snow-shrouded Annapurna peak, the bubbling Kali River and Narayan Ashram. During this extended trek, you can see your eyes on the gorgeous vista of the glittering Parvati Lake and Gauri Kund adorned at the very foot of Chota Kailash. One can also visit the temple dedicated to Shiva and Parvati which is located at the shoreline.

6. Panchachuli Base Camp Trek

Stunning view of Panchchuli peaks and its beautiful reflection in water.

One of the exciting base camps, the Panchachuli Base Camp Trek stretched out in a 40 km radius starting from Dar to Panchachuli glacier is a thrilling 10 days trek. Cradled in the snuggly lap of the snowbound Himalayan peaks like Panchachuli and Darma Valley in Pithoragarh district, the Panchachuli base camp trek is endowed with utmost scenic grandeur. A pleasant trail will take you through the remote villages of Bongling, Sela, Nagling, Baaling, and Duktu along river Dhauliganga. This easy to moderate trek offers a vivid panorama of the snowy peaks, bubbly streams, carpeted grasslands, and diverse Himalayan flora-fauna. This hasty trek will bless you with the views of Himkhand, Yuli river fringed by the dense forests of Devdaar and Bhoj Patra.

7. Ralam Valley

Ralam Glacier West

A wonderland for the avid trekkers, the Ralam Valley East in the Kumaon region of Uttarakhand is an extended 15 days trek. This piquant trek starts from Munsiyari and snakes its way up to the Gori Ganga River past Rargari, Mapang, and Martoli to Sumdu. From here, the route will take you closer to the snow-clad peaks of Rajrambha, Chaudhara, Chirag We and Suitilla on the eastern side.

8.Darma Valley

 Bharat S Bisht
Flowers in Darma Valley

The strenuous Darma Valley trek is a relatively unexplored trek which is known for offering exquisite views of nature’s munificence. The Darma Valley trek follows the same route as the Panchachuli base camp, the only difference being that the trekkers can peculiarly explore the vicinity of Darma Valley. Trekking to Darma Valley can be a little tedious but the beauty that the trek has to offer is worth the pain. This 60 km trek starts from Sobla, the entry point of Darma Valley and paves its way further to Duktu through Dar, Sela and Baling.

9.Lipulekh Trek

 Asheesh Sambher - eUttaranchal social
On your trek to Liphu Lekh trek, you can witness the majestic glimpse of OM parvat from Navi dhang region.

The virgin Lipulekh is a stirring 13 days trek which requires high altitude trekking. Lipulalekh is a major pass of the Kumaon region situated in the Kali Valley. This is a hard trek which starts from Pangu in Pithoragarh district and crosses Gala, Budhi, Gunji and Nabi Dhang. To set your foot on this 86 km trek, you need to take the permit issued by the district authority of Pithoragarh.

10. Nanda Devi East Base Camp

Situated an impressive altitude of 4,150 metres, the moderate Nanda Devi East Base Camp trek can be completed within 15 days. This high altitude trek starts from Munsiyari, a tiny hamlet which is a home to Johari Tribe. One can behold the spectacular views of the mystic Panchachuli peaks that can be seen from here. The views from Milam Glacier of Trishuli, Hardeol and Rishi Pahar are amazing as well. The highlight of this trek is the enchanting meadows at the Nanda Devi Base Camp and the occasional sightings of the elusive Snow Leopard or the Himalayan Musk Deer.

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