Duration of Trek: 8 nights/9 days
Focus: Leh/Upshi/Hamya/Chumathang/Puga Sumdo/Korzok/Tsokar/Debring/Leh
Day 01: Leh - Upshi - Hamya
After an early breakfast we ride 47 Kms south east towards the small post at Upshi on the Manali Leh Highway. From here leaving the highway we continue due east towards the small village of Hyamnya about 35 Kms where we camp for the night.
Day 02: Hamya - Chumathang
After an early breakfast we start our almost 60 Kms level ride to the village of Chumathang at 3965 mts/13005 ft. Chumathang is famous all over Ladakh and Zanskar for its medicinal hot springs that are reputed to heal all kinds of body pain. We set up camp near this village for the night.
Day 03: Chumathang - Puga Sumdo
The ride today goes through a spectacular landscape so typical Ladakh till we reach the Mahe Bridge 23 Kms away. From here we cross over and ride 14 Km through a narrow green gorge to the village of Sumdo. We camp near the village. In the evening we explore the small Gompa that houses several well preserved paintings and images.
Day 04: Puga Sumdo - Korzok
After breakfast we leave for the village of Korzok at the northern end of the spectacular Tsomoriri Lake.The 43 Km ride goes through vast shrub land surrounded by rolling hills that acquire fantastic hues and colours ranging from deep purple to crimson and desert brown with the traverse of the sun. We also pass a small turquoise lake - the Tazang Tso.From here riding through shrub land populated with colonies of Marmots (Phya in Ladakhi) we reach the village of Karzok at 4572m / 14,996ft on the northern lakeshore. We set up camp near the village on the shores of this fascinating lake.
Day 05: Karzok
A relaxed day at the lake where we get to walk around this beautiful lake 24 Km long lake at an altitude of 4242 mts/13786 ft. During this season we get to see thousands of migratory birds gliding on the lake which include geese, duck while around the lake you can spot the resident species of white-winged redstart, robin accentor, Asian martin, white-throated dipper and finches.
Day 06: Karzok - Tsokar
After an early breakfast we head towards another breathtaking lake at 4485 mts/14711 ft, the Tsokaror salt lake. We head back to the small village of Puga where we turn west to cross the Pologongka la at 4940 mts/16203 ft emerging into a vast plateau of stunted grass and shrubs. This vast plain sustains an amazing variety of wild life including the Kyang (Tibetan Wild Ass), the Woolly Hare, Tibetan Wolf, Red Fox, colonies of Marmots and Pica and the rarely spotted subtle Snow leopard. The bird life includes a number of resident species like the Himalayan Snow Cock, Common and Fork Tailed Swift, Sand and Eurasian Crag Martin and a host of others. The other very visible birds are the large lammergeyer and the Himalayan Griffon circling in the thermal currents high above.
Day 07: Tsokar - Debring
We ride through the vast pasture lands of the More Plainsto reach Debring 4800 mts/15744 fton the main Manali - Leh highway.The More plains is also the summer home of the nomadic Changpa shepherds whom you can spot with their large herds of sheep and goats in this plateau living out of their black yak skin tents. Debring lies below the Tanglang la and we camp here for the night.
Day 08: Debring - Upshi
We begin our ascent to the Tanglang La at 5303 mts/17393 ftthe world's third highest motorable pass. From here the switchback road winds far down into the Indus Valley and 56 Kms later we reach the small village of Upshi. We camp in the oases like Gya campsite set amidst a yawning canyon
Day 09: Upshi - Leh
Today after breakfast we begin our 60 Km rides through the spread out Indus Valley along the Indus River till we reach Leh by lunchtime.
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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.