Permission is granted only when Gangotri National Park is opened
Preparation Day 1: Arrive Delhi, India. Stay or depart same day to Rishikesh, 6 hrs, 242 kms from New Delhi.
Prep. Day 2: Reach Risikesh, Uttrakkhand, the yoga capital of India.
Prep. Day 3: Depart in morning from Rishikesh to Uttarkashi, by bus or shared taxi or personal taxi, mountain roads, 6 hrs, 170kms, from Rishikesh
Prep. Day 4: For Kedartal, trekking permit is required to be issued from Wild life Range office in Uttarkashi, which they do give it to trekking agency. So I chosed Spider trek in Uttarkashi, for guide only, for 6 days. I was having my 2 man tent & sleeping bag, so they provided gear for guide & alpine gas canisters with utensil.
Having permission,depart to Gangnani, 1hr, 47 kms from Uttarkashi, for dip & stay at Natural hot water spring pools.
Prep. Day 5: Depart in morning to Gangotri (3048m), via Harsil, 52 kms, for stay near Bhagirathi Ganga, picturesque waterfall, GANGA TEMPLE, bath in Ganga & for arranging food stuffs for next 5 days. On trek to Kedartal, Gangotri is last civilization.
Trek Day 1: Start Trekking from Gangotri (3048m) to Bhojkharak (3780m), 8kms, 6-7 hrs
Day begins with trekking steep ascent through Fir forest & traversing Kedar Gorge. Trek is uphill climb with paved way, with only & major concern is to cross spider wall, a narrow path on rocky slope manageable to put your feet & may be slippery if wet. Views of Mighty Thalay sagar peak (6904m) becomes overwhelming
Trek Day 2: Bhoj Kharak (3780m) to Kedartal (4912m) (around 12kms & 10 hrs): A combination of pleasant a day uphill trek upto kedarkharak meadows & laborious part from kedarkharak to finally ridge of kedartal lake, traversing snow, boulders & loose rocks, which one can split into two days by halting at Kedarkharak (4270m). We arrived late with cloud blanket & cold for few evening hours, while night was giving silver glimpse of surrounding snow covered peaks & plenty of stars in the sky.
Trek Day 3: Mesmerizing Morning glory giving views of grand frozen kedartal lake, with melting edges at the base of Mighty & beautiful Thalaysagar (6904m)peak, adjoining Brigupanth (6772m) & Jogin group of peaks. Stay for a time of yours at Kedartal lake, to rest & acclimatize in the solitary.
Trek Day 4: As Kedartal Lake is formed, from melting of kedar glacier, which gives birth to kedar Ganga, Lord Shiva’s contribution to river Bhagirathi, its best to make base camp stay at ridge of Kedartal lake & utilize the day to trek towards base camp of Thaly sagar peak, for pleasant solitary immersion in to Himalayan world & return to base camp at Kedartal. The morning white sun , glory of Thalaysagar & Mighty Kedartal lake at base, coming & going of clouds in backdrop of ink blue sky & coming of dawn is simply wonderful to be explored.
Trek Day 5: Descent from Kedartal to Bhojkharak
Trek Day 6: Descent from Bhojkharak to Gangotri, rest or further permission to go for another 20 kms trek to Gaumukh Glacier from where river Ganga originates. One may go to Tapovan ahead Gaumukh at base of another looming peak Mt Shivling (6543m).
Adjoining is the peak Meru, Jimmy Chin’s documentary on scaling the Shark’s FinMt. Meru (6310m)may be the best climbing movie not only involving climbing but the compassionate friendship.
- Backpack, Down Jacket, Headlamp, Hiking Boots, Sleeping Bag, Stove and Fuel, Sunglasses
Extra batteries for Camera
While from New Delhi to Gangorti, I stayed at budget guest houses. Trek starts from Gangotri to Kedartal & return to Gangotri, for which I used my camping tent. For trekking agency for guide & basic utensils I paid around $200 for 6 days trek from Uttarkashi to Uttarkashi, while additional days to reach Gangotri & amount for transport & food to be kept in mind.