The magnificent Stok Kangri 6153 m. situated on the southern skyline of Leh. Clearly visible from Leh, the capital of Ladakh. Stok Kangri is an ideal peak for those seeking the first 6000m. in Indian Himalaya. Declared an open trekking peak by Indian mountaineering foundations. Anyone physically fit can find this Stok Kangri, like a dream experience come true. From the summit stunning views of Karakoram range, Ladakh range, and Zanskar range. During clear sky, K2 even can be seen at a far distance.
First, two days at Leh set aside for acclimatization, you visit the colourful gompas located along the Indus river. Instead of taking the shortest route, we take the Choksti route from west of Stok Kangri. This approach gives us a little more time to acclimatize. We climb very steeply out of Choksti village. Crossing the Skyangs La (4900m) near Palam peak (5380m) descent to Ganda La (4800m) into Rumbak valley. Rumbak valley is also known as the home of elegant Snow Leopard and across Stok La to base camp. Making Choksti a starting point, the first four days set for pre-summit acclimatisation trek that guaranteed you all reach Stok Kangri summit. Stok Kangri climbing is not technically difficult but straightforward. A steep climb after crossing glacier located on the south ridge to summit with a magnificent view of the Himalayas and the Karakoram mountain range. August September months when most of the snow on mountains of Ladakh melts and rarely used of crampons. Stok Kangri remains one of the most popular trekking peaks in the Indian Himalayas. And most important is that there are many pre-summit acclimatisation trek options.
Day 1: Delhi – Leh flight / Arrive Leh. Leh airport pickup, check into hotel. Rest and acclimatize
Today morning early transfer or drive to domestic airport for the flight to Leh, but spectacular flight over the Himalaya to Leh. The rest of the day is free to relax and acclimatize to the altitude of 3500m as well as visit Leh bazaar. visit the Royal Palace of Leh from the 16th century, continue through the fields of Sankar monastery , which is adjoins the north Leh. Finally end with climb to the Shanti Stupa. Overnight in hotel.
Day 2: Leh – Acclimatize Sight-seeing in around Leh
After breakfast, we drive to visit Shey first, than Thiksey. Thiksey monastery, which is 27 km from Hemis. This monastery is the oldest monastery of Gelugpa School in Ladakh. The great Lama Paldan Shesrap built it in 14th century. Here you can see the big statue of the Future Buddha. Continue to Taktok and Chemdey and return back to visit Hemis monastery which is 45 km far from Leh and it takes 90 minute drive. The great Mahasiddha Staktsang Raspa along with great ancestor Singey Namgyal builds this biggest monastery in 16th century. Continue to Matho than we drive to Stok which is situated opposite of Leh at a distance of 14 kms, At Stok visit of Royal Palace built during 1825 AD and palace has great collections of antiquity. Continue to visit Matho situated 10 kms from Stok, which has 10th century complex. Finally we drive back to Leh
Day 3: Drive Leh – Nimu – Choksti (3210m), Trek to Choksti campsite.
Setting off from Leh, you drive Leh – Srinagar highway along the Indus river to Nimu. Leaving behind highway at Nimu / Nimo / Nimmoo, you enter in awesome Zanskar River valley. Continue drive along the road as far as to Choksti. Easy trek through stunning and exquisite gorges along left bank of downstream Zanskar. Cross motor bridge then turn right and take villager trail that leads to Choksti village. Continue easy ascend few minutes towards the beautiful small village Choksti (few houses). Explore the culture of village by visiting local house. Enjoy the scenic beauty of the valley and surrounding huge spectacular mountains. Overnight camp at Choksti.
Day 4: Trek to Choksti dok (4250m), 5-6 hrs
From Choksti it goes slowly but consistently upward in the Stok Range Mountains. A fairly hard first days walking as we climb very steeply out of Choksi. As we ascend the valley narrows and becomes more and more spectacular. Looking back we can see the magnificent rock formations of the Ladakh Mountains. The dramatic mountains in various shades of purples, greens and browns can be seen for miles in every direction. The last trees and shrubs remain, barren, wild high mountain scenery surrounds you, and only along the watercourses thrives vibrant green. With a little luck you can watch the first mountain goats, marmots and Blue Sheep’s today. The tents are on a beautiful green square in the Choktsi dok. Anyone who wants can still take a trip to a lookout point with around 4480 m altitude after tea. Overnight camp
Day 5: Trek to base of Skyangs La (4900m), 6-7 hrs
A short stage leads through fascinating landscapes with colorful rock formations that are so typical of Ladakh. Up to just below the Kang La base (4900), again with extensive views of the five peaks of the Ladakh-group in the north, beyond the Indus Valley. We are not alone up here: marmots, blue sheep, mountain goats and Dzos (crossing yak / cow) keep us company. In the vast alpine meadows to find edelweiss, are our tents in the middle … After lunch is still a trip to a 5056 m high ridge possible, which offers a view from Indus valley with Leh to Stok Kangri. This is one of the most spectacular wild camps with great views across to the Karakoram..
Day 6: Trek to Skyangs La (5040m) – Ganda la (4900m) – Base (4400m), 6-7 hrs
Today is a hard day as we cross our first pass. The climb is a long ascent, which is gradual at first with a last steep rocky section to the top of the Kang La (5,260m). The paths are little used and can be indistinct. From the top of the pass we have the opportunity to walk up Palam Peak (5,380m) for views second only to the view from the summit of Stok Kangri. Ahead we can now see the summit of Stok Kangri and in the distance is Leh. Behind us the Ladakh Range and Himalaya can be seen for miles. From the top we descend a little and then contour round into the next valley. As the trail contours round the top of the valley we have great views across to Stok Kangri. Descending a short way we have another magnificent wild high camp at 4,900m for acclimatisation with views across to Stok Kangri. (Please note that occasionally if the weather is bad or there is no water we cannot camp here and have to continue on and camp below the Ganda La).
Day 7: Trek to Yurutse – Rumbak (4050m) – Base Stok La (4300m), 6-7 hrs
An easy day today after the exertions of yesterday. We contour round the valley and on up to our second pass, the Ganda La (4,800m). This pass provides access into the Markha Valley. Today awaits us, as a reward for the day yesterday, again a shorter trip. From the pass we descend into a beautiful valley and met the picturesque hamlet Yurutse, 4150 m, in the midst of a green oasis is located. Further down we cross the river on a wooden bridge and go to the idyllic village Rumbak, 4000 m, turn a green oasis in the majestic Stok Mountains. You can explore the village and Gompa. Especially impressive is the way of life adapted to the nature of the Ladakhis, who live mainly by agriculture throughout the year. The way on leads out from Rumbak the next camp, with a small stream and overlooking the Stok La pass.
Day 8: Trek to Stok La (4900m) – Mankarmo (4250m), 7-8 hrs
Leaving camp we cross the Stok La (4,900m), our last pass of the trek. At first we trek on a beautiful, gently sloping trail, but then the path becomes steeper and steeper as it zigzags up to the top of the pass. Rock flutes rise all around us, home to the elusive snow leopard. From the top the views are even more spectacular; layer upon layer of multicoloured rock cathedrals are spread before us in every direction. The descent is very steep at first and then we contour round two valleys to the junction with the river coming down from Stok Kangri. Continue along the river to campsite at Mankarmo
Day 9: Trek to Base camp (4975 m), 3-4 hrs
From Munikarmo we climb straight up the moraine which stands above camp. There are few, very small crevasses which are crossed easily. Overnight camping
Day 10: Base camp – Rest day / Training
Today at base camp. Morning some training with shoes & crampons. Afternoon rest and relax.
Day 11: Ascent Stok Kangri (6153 m), 10-11 hrs
Today an early start to climb to summit. This peak does not require any technical mountaineering capability. Our route initially crosses scree and boulder slopes and then leads to easy angled snow slopes which require ice axe, rope and crampons. The route is not difficult but at this altitude it will be strenuous. From the summit of Stok Kangri (6153m), we could see as far as the Karakoram ranges, Lartse peak and Gelup Kangri and of course Leh city. Retrace your step way back to base-camp or all the way to Smankarmo.
Day 12: Trek to Stok, 5-6 hrs, drive Leh, 45 minutes
Keeping on the left bank of the Stok Nallah, the trail descends, going past the jagged ruins of the Staklang Kar fort. At its base is a thick grove of willow. The trail is well worn, being used for the summer movement of cattle and sheep to the higher pastures. The small gorge opens on to an alluvial plain. The trail through apricot orchards and barley fields, ending at the village of Stok and the Ladakh Sarai. There should be time to visit Stok Palace and Museum while we wait for our jeep. Then an hour drive to Leh, and overnight stay at hotel.
Day 13: Leh – Delhi flight. Delhi flight back to hometown.
Morning transfer to airport and flight to Delhi.
Mr Holzmann – Stok Kangri Trekking Tour.
Lamayuru – Chilling – Zingchen – Stok Kangri
Duration: 14 Days
Start/End: 16.7. – 29.7
Group: 8 Austrians (Gmunden)
“OVERALL, we were very satisfied with the professional organization of the tour. In perticulara food was excellent* and equipment were above average. The crew was very friendly and helpful. Unexpected circumstances (weather, landslides) were managed professionaly by the guide. * (Variety of tasteful Indian and Nepali food). HIGHLIGHTS: Trek Lanaq – Chilling (wonderful landscape with wonderful stones). Trek: Last day to Stok La BC and Stok Kangri ”
Mr Holzmann & group – Gmunden – AUSTRIA – 29 July
“Thanks Prem and the Potala Adventure team for organizing a fantastic trekking expedition to the summit of Stok Kangri in August this year over a 10 days period.
For our team of 3 from Australia (Ken, Scott and Michael) we encountered near perfect weather and thorough acclimatization through the Ladakh valley which resulted in a successful summit of Stok Kangri. We especially give thanks to our main guide Sherab, our climbing guide Raina, our cook and assistant, the horseman and of course 7 hardworking horses who carried all of the expedition gear and we all had a truly wonderful and exciting time trekking throughout the 10 days period.
Our main guide Sherab had excellent knowledge on all aspects of the region as well as logistics for our team and the climbing guide was also excellent in both knowledge and skill and safety aspects higher up the mountain when we needed it both. Our trek was relaxed and most often humorous and testimony to how we all got on so well as a team.
Our main cook and assistant actually knew a Nepali guide (Netra) we had on a recent trip to Nepal who was our guide on Annapurna circuit a year earlier so in an instance we had a rapport straight away with both of them and shared many jokes together.
The cook produced the most amazing meals each day with great presentation throughout the 10 day period and with such a great variety that we ate different dishes most days, in fact there was so much food that we quite often couldn’t finish on some days. We started each day (on time) with warm washing water and breakfast and the routine was excellent and prepared us well for each day of trekking. Lunches were in the form of sandwiches, fruits, fruit juice and a chocolate bar or sweet on most days in a tight proof container which didn’t spoil the meal – again excellent idea.
A special mention to the horseman (and his team of horses) who prepared his horses each day with no problem and we were amazed how much each morning he had to go and round up the horses who were away from the camps in surrounding valleys etc so to him a job well done.
At all times during the trek we felt safe and had excellent equipment and nothing was a problem for your team, we had a great time and everything was well planned and logistically well organized professionally throughout the trek, and because of this we have walked away with lifelong memories and friends from this trip to the summit of Stok Kangri.
Prem and team well done on a fantastic job and we would not hesitate to recommend Potala Adventures to anyone thinking of trekking in India – we had an amazing experience!! Thank you”
Mr Ken Harrison and group- BRISBANE – AUSTRALIA – 12 October
- Ladakh trekking peak, Pre-summit superb acclimatization trek
- Indus valley sight-seeing
- Rumbak valley the snow leopard home, Hemis high altitude park
- View of Ladakh & Karakoram range