Lamayuru to Darcha Trek in Ladakh & Zangskar

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Lamayuru to Darcha Trek in Ladakh & Zangskar

Duration of Trek: 21 Days
Best Time:
June to September 
Highest Point: Shinkunla (5090m)
Focus: Monasteries, Monks, People Villages
Highlight: Zanskar Region, Monasteries and Landscape
Physical Challenge: Challenging overall

Day 01 : Leh to Lamayuru 8 hours
Sightseeing of Liker monastery and the world famous Alchi Choskor shrines on the first day drive till Lamayuru, where overnight stay in camp or guest house is arranged a day before before starting the trek.

Day 02 : Lamayuru to Wanla (3250m) 2-3 hours
The trek begins early with a short walk for about 20 minutes towards east to cross the stream from a point of a Stupa. Another stream leads you southwards and then east up to the Prikiting La (3700 m). After crossing the pass you get down to a river in Shillakung valley. Take the right trail along a Stupa and Mani wall. Cross the river to get the campsite passing through the houses near the second bridge and a tented restaurant.

Day 03 : Wanla to Hanupatta (3970m) 6-7 hrs
After crossing the river and a stream walk along the road eastward. The trail splits into two, one leads towards Alchi village and another to Sumda Chenmo. There is a bridge to cross before walking again along the road for some distance. Soon with crossing another bridge, a difficult trail entering into Hanupatta gorge has to be negotiated with great care, especially challenging for heavily laden ponies. One more bridge to cross (ignore the second one) to get to a stupa, following which, gorge opens up into the valley of Hanupatta.

Day 04 : Hanupatta to Photoksar (4050m) via Sirsirla (4850m) 6-7 hrs.
The day 4 involves crossing streams and walking along these before climbing the Sirsir la (4850m). After crossing the pass a stream leads to the campsite in the Photoksar village.

Day 05 : Photksar to SingayLa base (4300m) 8 hrs
On the walk down the village keep the stream on your left, and you approach a few Pulu (herders’ shelters). Cross the stream to move towards the base of Singay la. The base, which is the campsite for the day, is not a very long walk from the herders’ shelters.

Day 06 : Singayla base to Lingshet (3950m) 5-6 hrs.
Climb up the Singay La pass (5050m), and on the way down a trail leading to left goes to Yulchung Nerags village. Take the right trail to get to Kyukpa la (4430). After crossing Kyukpa la pass take the right trail to the same direction down to a hamlet. Cross the stream and walk upwards to Margo la (4500m). The Lingshet village is reached after the descent of the pass. The campsite is near the school and there is a monastery is above the village on the left hand side.

Day 07 : Lingshet to Snyertse (3800m) 8 hrs.
Walk down the stream through the fields and an easy ascend starts after crossing the stream. At Hanuma la (4800m) has the first and good view of Lingshet valley. Walking down along a stream leads you to the campsite before the village next to a tree.

Day 08 : Snyertse to Hanamur (3450m) 6 hrs.
The day’s journey begins with crossing the stream and leaving it on the left to walk upwards. After a curve start walking up to the stream, cross the bridge and then a steep ascent takes you to Parfi la (3950m). Walking down to the Zanskar River and the trail along it leads to Hanamur, which has herders’ shelters. The campsite is close to the fields along the River.  is near the field and the river. The village Hanamur has only two houses.

Day 09 : Hanamur to Pishu 4-5 hrs. 
Walk along the Zanskar River passing through Pidmo village before getting to the camp.

Day 10 : Pishu to Karsha (3650m) 4 hrs. Continue walking along the Zanskar River towards Karsha passing through Rinam village. The campsite for the day is below the majestic monastery perched on the mountain. Before retiring for the day, visit to this huge monastic heritage with many monks is worthwhile.

Day 11 : Karsha to Padum (3610m) 2 hrs.
The day also has in store for you visits to religious monuments in Pibiting village and in Padum, which is also headquarter of Zanskar region. Check in Hotel Ibex and visit Sani and Stakrimo monasteries after having lunch. Night stay in the hotel with good basic facility is refreshing.

Day 12 : Rest at Padum (3610m)
Day 12 is spared for a complete rest before proceeding further. Visits to historical monasteries of Stakrimo and Sani would be worthwhile during the day before your lunch at your leisure.

Day 13 : Padum to Raru (3800m) 5-6 hrs.
All through the day’s trek is walking on the road in parallel to and upstream the Lungnak River. On the way perched on a hill is the Bardan Gonpa seemingly protruding from the river and then Mune village is reached. The campsite is close to a bridge.

Day 14 : Raru to Pepula (3750m) 5 hrs.
There are many up and down traverse along the river after crossing it to get the Pepu la pass close to a stream. The campsite is near the teashop.

Day 15 : Pepula to Purne (3775m) 4-5 hrs
Cross the stream and walk up to the next bridge near Tantse. Cross the Lungnak River and walk towards north for Purne, where you have to camp

Day 16 : Purne to Phuktal (3900m) to Purne 5 hrs.
Walk towards Phugtal Monastery and walk back to the Camp at Purne. Overnight stay in the Camp.

Day 17 : Purne to Sking (4000m) 6-7 hrs.
Walk towards south and cross the same bridge. Walk southward through a valley to get the camp.

Day 18 : Sking (Hing or Kargyak) to Lhakhang (4450m) 6 hrs.
Walk towards Kargyak and the camp site is just across the bridge. Overnight stay in the camp.

Day 19 : Lhakhang to Ramjak (4300m) via Shinkunla 6-7 hrs.
Again walk along the river and the ascend starts after a few miles walk. Reach Shinkunla (5090m) top and other side of the pass is little bit difficult. Arrive at Ramjak after passing by Chumik Nakpo. The Campsite is near a Mani wall.

Day 20 : Ramjak to Palhamo (3700m) 5-6 hrs.
Walk towards the same direction along the stream and after sometime cross the river to get to a teashop. The campsite is after crossing the bigger stream.

Day 21 : Pal Lhamo to Darcha Sumo (3300m) 3-4 hrs.
Today is the last day with short walk passing through the villages of Chika and Rarik, from where the motor able road starts and it takes you to Darcha Sumdo.

Tour Ends

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Ladakh Trekking India (LTI) did an excellent job for our large group for Markha Valley Trek with special spiritual interests. Mr. Sam accompanied us the whole time and took diligently care of our needs. We became friends, and this is all I would like to say: a great thank you from all my heart.

Mr. Sean Jorge | USA

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