Chandratal to Baralacha La Trek - 8 Days

An isolated & peaceful trek in Lahaul. Meet Gaddi shepherds in high meadows, Crossing of 7 km long Baralacha la, the source of 2 great Himalayan river – Tsarap & Chenab

  • Overview
  • Itinerary
  • Included
  • Equipment
  • Review

Trip Introduction
Chandra Tal (the Lake of Moon) is situated at an altitude of 4270m in the Himalayan region of Lahaul and Spiti. Situated mostly in the part of Spiti. Chandratal is a popular destination for trekkers and campers. The trail from Kunzum la to Chandratal is more scenic and panoramic overlooking Samudra Tapu glacier, CB peaks, KR group of peak and among all the highest Mulkila peak ( 6517m) standing west of Chandratal. The vast meadows of Lake and its surroundings is favorite summer home for Gaddi Shepherds who graze their flocks in the vicinity of the Lake. The Gaddi shepherds has long held traditional grazing rights in the area. The Lake is also one of the two high altitude wetlands of India which have been designated as Ramsar sites. 
Baralacha la is high mountain pass connecting Lahaul valley of Himachal to Ladakh Zanskar of Jammu Kashmir. Baralacha la is one of four high mountain pass that is on Manali - Leh national highway. Baralacha la is source of three river i.e. Chandra, Bhaga and Tsarap. Chandra Bhaga later becomes Chenab at Tandi. In other way saying Baralacha la is source of Chenab river.
It is high altitude trek surrounded with glaciers and high mountains of Lahaul, so a proper acclimatization is needed before leaving for this trek from Chandratal or Kunzum la.

This trekking program, sets out from the Manali, crossing Rohtang la first camp at Chota Dara. First two days we have set for a proper acclimatization before the actual trek begins at Kunzum la. First day magnificent drive along the Chandra River valley to Chhatru - Chota Dara. Than driving up to Kunzom La pass (4551m) having a view of Spiti valley, 8 kms trek down in large meadows, lake of moon approached. Further the trail crosses the two river crossing of Tokpo Yongma and Tokpo Gongma. Crossing over the boulders and grassy stretches, reach the top of the Baralacha la which is seven km long. The pass joins the Manali-Leh national highway.

Outline itinerary
Day 1
:  Arrive Manali
Day 2:  Manali to Atal Tunnel Rohtang - Chhatru (3,100 m) drive 5 hrs. Acclimatize hike in Chatru.
Day 3:  Chatru to Kunzum (4,551 m) drive 2 hr, Trek Chandra Tal (4,270 m)
Day 4:  Rest, explore and acclimatize
Day 5:  Trek Tokpo Yongma (4,400 m)
Day 6:  Trek Tokpo Gongma (4,700 m)
Day 7:  Trek  Baralacha la (4'890 m). Drive to Patseo (3,750 m) - Atal Tunnel - Manali
Day 8:  Manali to Chandigarh / New Delhi. 

" I must say it was beginner's luck for us doing trekking with amazing team at Potala. We planned for our first ever trek(Chandratal) , and luckily found this trek company. It was straight away a feel-good sensation for us on arrival at their place at Manali. We received the warmth of hospitality.
On our tour which included trekking and camping, there was never a moment that we felt we lacked a thing in the cold desert of Spiti Valley. Every part of the trekking and camping was well organized. Be it the camp site setup, food , tents, sleeping bags etc were all taken care of. All that we were left to, was to enjoy.
A group of 4 great people from Potala, made it so easily-possible for us.
Cheers Potala !!!!
Mr. N. Ranjan

Detailed itinerary
Day 1:  Arrive Manali
Arrive Manali from Chandigarh or Delhi. Rest and relax and explore local market and sights in around Manali by your own.

Day 2:  Manali to Atal Tunnel Rohtang - Chhatru (3,100 m) drive 5 hrs. Acclimatize
An early departure from Manali, we drive 1 hour to Atal Tunnel Rohtang. Which is now a get way to Lahoul & Spiti, Pangi and Zanskar.16 km down to foot of the Rohtang la a small place called Gramphu. A dusty and rugged path leads towards Chhatru. We drive along the left banks of Chandra River an about 14km to Chatru. And afternoon take a acclimatize hike to the Chatru - Hamta trail.

Day 3:  Chatru to Kunzum (4,551 m) drive 2hr, Trek Chandra Tal (4,270 m), 5-6 hrs
We drive along the right bank of the Chandra River. Along the trail one could see huge granite walls, which are increasingly popular among rock climbers. The color of these rocks is differs to each other. Far across Chandra River, view of Chota Shigri glacier and some wonderful peaks are mind-blowing. Some small teashops mark the arrival at Chota Dara. Leaving Chota Dara behind we continue along the right bank of Chandra River. Good view of Bara Shigri glacier on the left side. All above the glacier which is 12 km in length longest in Himachal, impressive view of Papsura (6451m), Dharamsura (6446) and numbers of peaks towers above Bara Shigri glacier. Crossing bridge soon after Batal, we climb towards Kunzum la following small stream, which originated above pass. Arriving at pass has a glimpse of Spiti valley, which runs 170 kms towards south. Take a path, which goes to Lake 8 km; approach large meadows - a favorite area with a multitude of shepherd’s huts. Passing and crossing a long stretch of stony ground and small stream arrive at the lake. Across Chandra River most fascinating sight of Samudra Tapu glacier, North Dakka glacier, South Dakka glacier and Silver glacier. Above the glaciers towering mighty peaks of Moulkila (6517m) and C.B. peaks. Leaving Kunzum we trek to Chandratal which is 8 kms long and has a wide panoramic view of Chandra Bhaga peaks all around. Camp after Chandratal.

Day 4: Rest, explore and acclimatize at Chandratal
Today a day for leisure and walk around the lake, or explore surroundings, the further 3 days will be at high altitude, so proper acclimatization must before leaving Chandratal to Baralacha la.

Day 5:  Chandratal to Tokpo Yongma (4,400 m), 7 hrs
A long exhausted trek but well worth, because occasionally trekkers encounters patches of green pastureland. This stretch is about 14 to 16 km. The trail starts with a series of ups and downs through steep ravine and boulders - stream fields. As you progress, a flat grassy land, which slopes up to snow, clad ridge. Snow cock can be heard has heard and even sighted, if you are lucky. After 3 hrs the trail winds down a knoll, which has a steep precipice to the river far down to the left. Cross the stream if the water is low or find Snow Bridge up near the source. Or camp and cross next morning as earliest.

Day 6:  Tokpo Yongma to Tokpo Gongma (4,700 m), 6-7 hrs
Trek through a narrow valley flanked on both sides by snow-capped mountains. Star walk early as possible, since this stream to be cross, while the flow of the water is less early in the day. A short walk after crossing the river, here the valley opens out on a broad plateau where camp is set on a delightful grassy patch

Day 7:  Tokpo Gongma to Baralacha la (4'890 m) trek 5 hrs. Drive to Patseo (3,750 m)  - Keylong - Atal Tunnel - Manali, 6 Hrs.
Today early departure from camp towards Baralacha la pass, which is 7 km long, gives the source of three rivers - Chandra through South, Bhaga through upper Lahoul and Yunam towards Zanskar. A splendid view of M-4, which is the highest in the Moulkila range, can be seen from the trail as well as of Keorang range of Great Himalayas. On the pass, join the Manali - Leh highway and drive to Patseo and along the Bhaga river to Darcha - Jispa - Keylong. After Tandi along the Chandra River to Sissu and through Atal Tunnel Rohtang to Manali.

Day 8:  Manali to Chandigarh / New Delhi. 
Departure from Manali to Chandigarh / New Delhi.

What is included in the Price

  • All ground transportation to & fro as per the itinerary Manali to Manali.
  • All camping facilities.  3 men spacious 4 season tents for 2,  sleeping bags, foam mattresses, dining tent, trekking poles & safety gears. 
  • All meal during trek - starts with bed tea to breakfast, lunch, 3 course dinner, tea /coffee, snacks. from Indian, Tibetan, Chinese to continental cuisine. 
  • Support staff: Qualified trekking guide, cook & camp crew. 
  • Trekking mules/horses for porterage of your luggage and trekking gear. 
  • Camping fee,  trekking permits. 
  • Goods and services tax.  First aid medical kit.

What is not included in the Price
×     Domestic flight. Leh - Delhi. (Delhi airport transfer on request)
×     Delhi Manali transfer.
×     Hotel in Manali.
×     Travel insurance.
×     Soft or hard drinks.
×     Entrance fee at monasteries
×     Personal tipping to staff: Guide, cook, camp crew, horsemen, porters, driver.
×     Any unforeseen cost arises by natural hazards rain, snow, road block which cost extra lodging & boarding beyond trip Schedule.

Trekking Gear

What we provide
We provide all the GROUP GEAR included in the following list:

3-4 Person roomy 4 season tents for 2 - 3 people and individual as well, dining tent, toilet tent and other camping accessories.
Sleeping bags and comfortable foam mattresses.
Kitchen tent, Stoves, fuel, cookware etc.
Bed tea, nutritious breakfast, three course meal (dinner), packed lunch, post trek snacks, tea and coffee.
Trekking poles and Duffel bags for your luggage's.
Basic first aid box and mini oxygen bottles

What you may need - Your personal gear recommended in List :-
Day pack: A bit of bigger size 30 - 40 liters in order to keep fleece, jacket, water bottle, camera, packed lunch

Foot wear :-
Good condition trekking boots – not new used before in your country side for best fit for trekking, water proof.
Camp shoes, light and comfortable as running shoes or sandal ( like Teva ) for river crossing. Its necessity for you to bring sandals for river crossing.
Socks both Woolen and cotton as desire.

Clothing :-
Gore tex jacket or similar.
Down jacket/vest is good for cool evenings.
Wind/Rain jacket: (i.e. gore-tex, northface or similar) waterproof and breathable. Its necessity to have jacket while crossing passes.
Trekking pants, light, comfortable, water proof /breathable.
Long sleeve shirt Light weight dry-fast (for sun/insect protection).
Thermal innerwear winter thermal innerwear.
T-shirts for day time.
One mid weight/heavyweight fleece (long sleeve) jacket or warm pullover.
Short pants, underwear.
Sun Hat: cowboy style or baseball style to protect skin from direct sunlight.
Woolen cap for high altitude or while crossing pass or during evenings in camp.
One fleece or sweatpants for cold evenings during dining.
A pair of Hand gloves or woolen gloves.
Scarf to protect from dust or sunlight around neck. This is available in local markets with variety of colors.

Accessories :- 
Sun glasses with UV protection. An extra sun glass in case to replace.
Sun screen and lip protection.
Moisturizer cream: In Ladakh the air is dry and sun is harsh and strong during day. There are local moisturizer cream available in market. To avoid somehow skin allergy bring your personal cream.
Water bottle. Minimum I - 2 liter.
Trekking poles or sticks. If you have your own folded poles. 
Torch or one head lamp with extra batteries. Petzl or similar.
One toiletries kit, small towel.
Reading and writing materials.
Digital Camera or digital video recorder / solar charger.
Water purification tablets.
Nylon or water proof plastic bags to storage clothes and stuff.
One pocket knife light.

Others :- 
Gaiter / personal  climbing gear. (Can rent at Manali or Leh or Uttarkashi).
Water purification/filter: we boil water for you in the camp, what its essential you to have a water purification tablets or filter during the day of trekking.
Mosquito repellent cream.
Small Binocular.
First aid kit: We carry basic first aid kit with diamox, aspirin, paracetamol, antibiotics for diarrhea, antiseptic, bandage and band aids, Please you bring your personal first aid kit with medicine you think to need necessity for you.
Vitamin tablets or similar. 
Extra passport photos.

" I must say it was beginner's luck for us doing trekking with amazing team at Potala. We planned for our first ever trek(Chandratal) , and luckily found this trek company. It was straight away a feel-good sensation for us on arrival at their place at Manali. We received the warmth of hospitality.
On our tour which included trekking and camping, there was never a moment that we felt we lacked a thing in the cold desert of Spiti Valley. Every part of the trekking and camping was well organized. Be it the camp site setup, food , tents, sleeping bags etc were all taken care of. All that we were left to, was to enjoy.
A group of 4 great people from Potala, made it so easily-possible for us.
Cheers Potala !!!!
Mr. N. Ranjan

Price on Request

Ask for a group discount.

Call / Whatsapp 078071 98706

Trip Facts 
Activity
– Trekking & hiking
Region: Lahaul – Spiti, Himachal
Difficulty level – Moderate
Max Altitude – 4900 meters
Max sleeping altitude – 4700 meters
Lowest trek altitude – 3000 meters
Trip Length – 9 days Delhi to Delhi
7 days Manali to Manali
6 days trekking, 5 nights camping
Best time – June end to mid Oct