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climbing Stok Kangri – Indian Himalaya

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Stok Kangri 6154 m (eight,812 ft) is certainly one of our prime 10 trekking peaks on the planet.

Quick access from the vacationer city of Leh, Ladakh.

At a Look

Location: Ladakh, India
Distance: 20 km, a technique
Elevation Achieve: 2,686 m (20,190 ft)
Most Elevation: 6154 m (eight,812 ft)
Mountaineering Time: three – Four days plus at the very least every week to acclimatize.
Greatest occasions to hike: June – September

Highlights

An unbelievable sense of accomplishment
Superb views
Simple to entry (in comparison with different 6000+ m Himalayan Peaks)
Mountaineering abilities not required (except going unguided)
Assembly adventurers from around the globe
Shut encounter with wild blue sheep

Clay in the previous few toes earlier than the summit

Concerns

Elevation: Take time to acclimatize and think about packing acetazolamide (Diamox). Be taught the indicators of Acute Mountain Illness (AMS) and be ready to chop your journey quick or postpone it till you might be acclimatized. AMS can progress into the lethal Excessive-altitude pulmonary edema (HAPE) or Excessive-altitude cerebral edema (HACE). Additionally, keep in mind that the scant oxygen will sluggish you down loads.

Climate: Much less oxygen makes every little thing appear colder and the temperature felt prefer it was round -10 ° C (14° F) on the prime. Don’t be fooled by reviews that Ladakh is a desert. Convey a rain jacket. It may well additionally get extremely popular, so come ready to guard your self from the solar.

Glacier Journey and Steep Terrain: There’s a quick glacier crossing adopted by numerous steep, uncovered terrain. Use rope, crampons, and an ice axe, and both discover ways to use them or rent a information.

Daybreak was welcomed as we method the ridge after a protracted evening of climbing

Darkish: A midnight begin is required to reap the benefits of the glacier whereas it’s laborious and icy. Travelling on the aforementioned terrain at the hours of darkness carries some apparent dangers.

Water: The camps present boiled water, however bringing your personal filter or water remedy tablets/drops will provide you with extra choices.

Logistics

Getting There
To get to Leh (Ladakh’s largest city), both fly or drive overland from Delhi. The most cost effective method is to catch a bus to Manali, then one other bus on the Leh-Manali freeway to Leh. The bus experience from Manali to Leh takes 17 hours and is greatest cut up into two days. A nonstop bus prices Rs 833 (12 USD) and the 2-day journey prices Rs 2900 (40 USD).

In the event you don’t need to sit on a crowded bus as you go over a number of the world’s highest motorable passes, you may rent a personal or shared taxi from Manali for round Rs 20 000 – 30 000 (290-420 USD. Manali is a pleasant city and value just a few days’ go to.

Leh – Menali Freeway

The highway is open in the summertime months and is vulnerable to closures from landslides and flooding. It’s slender, tough, and windy – not for the faint of coronary heart. It additionally accommodates one of many world’s highest motorable passes, and several other extra over 5000 m. Just about everybody I do know (myself included) obtained altitude illness going over the passes. Leh will also be accessed through the Srinagar Leh freeway, however the highway is longer and topic to the identical closures.

Flying is the simplest and cheaper than hiring a personal taxi. A one-way flight from Delhi to Leh shall be round $100 – $200 USD and can take 1 hour 20 minutes. We went overland on the way in which there and flew out.

Getting from Leh to the trailhead at Stok Village is a fast taxi or bus experience.

Meals and Lodging

Lodging and eating places are plentiful in Stok Village and Leh.

There are three camps on the way in which up Stok Kangri: Chang Ma, Mankorma, and Base Camp. All serve meals and have tents accessible for trekkers. The tents all have sleeping pads, however they aren’t very heat or comfy. Convey your personal sleeping bag. Additionally, Chang Ma solely had just a few tents accessible.

Information or No Information?

Most individuals select to rent a information for climbing Stok Kangri. You possibly can rent one at base camp or in Leh, and it’s pretty cheap. Whether or not you rent a information in Leh or base camp, the associated fee shall be roughly the identical for a Four-day trek. Ask round in Leh for present prices of each, as issues can fluctuate from yr to yr. You can even be a part of an expedition full with ponies, cooks, and comfy tent.

Be a part of an Expedition if:

You don’t need to waste time planning.
You don’t need to carry your stuff.
You need to be comfy.

Get a information if:

You don’t have any mountaineering expertise.
You favor being secure.
You haven’t had a lot time to acclimatize (they will help you down in case you get AMS).
The climbing circumstances aren’t nice.

Think about skipping a information if:

You’ve got mountaineering expertise.
You might be assured that you’re effectively acclimatized.
You just like the independence of mountaineering alone.
The circumstances are good.

Gear

Rope, harnesses, crampons, gaiters, and ice axes might be rented in Leh or on the base camp. It’s barely cheaper to lease from Leh, and the gear might be higher, however which means lugging it uphill at excessive altitudes for 2 days. You possibly can lease sleeping baggage too, however I’d advise bringing your personal.

Your boots needs to be ankle excessive with a reasonably stiff sole to allow them to be worn with crampons. Mountaineering boots should not wanted. Additionally, don’t forget your headlamp and additional batteries. You’ll be climbing at the hours of darkness for many of the summit day.

Allow

Get the allow from the Indian Mountaineering Basis (IMF) workplace within the Mentokling restaurant for 50 USD. You have to go proper into the restaurant to seek out the workplace. It’s cheaper on the IMF workplace, however shopping for it at base camp would possibly prevent some cash in case you don’t find yourself climbing. You could find present allow costs right here.

Our Price Breakdown

For two individuals in 2017

Taxi from Leh to Stok Village: Rs 1900 (27 USD)
Tent keep, together with meals: Rs 6000 (87 USD)
Leases of rope, harness, ice axe, and crampons: Rs 1500 (22 USD)

Whole: Rs 8400 (121 USD)

Hiring a information from base camp would have price and extra Rs 8000 (115 USD)

The Route

We had been in Ladakh for practically a month at this level, and had been trekking for many of that point, so we opted to do it in three days. Truly, we had deliberate 4, however dragged ourselves all the way in which again to Stok Village on summit day. Regardless of the quick days, the evening at Mankorma is crucial to acclimatization.

Day 1 – Stok Village to Mankorma camp

Elevation Achieve: 823 m (2,700 ft)
Distance: 9 km (5.6 miles)
Mountaineering Time: Four hours

Chang Ma Camp is at 5.5 km (three.Four miles) and makes a great spot to cease for lunch or tea

Photograph: Pack ponies have been extra frequent than individuals alongside the path.

Day 2 – Mankorma camp to base camp

Elevation Achieve: 610 m (2000 ft)
Distance: Four km (2.5 miles)
Mountaineering Time: 2 hours

Woke as much as blue sheep lingering close to our tent.

We took an acclimatization stroll to the ridge above camp although most individuals opted to go all the way in which to the glacier.

Blue sheep at Mankorma Camp.

Day three – Base camp to summit and again to Stok Village

The view from the highest. We speculated that the bigger peak within the very pack is likely to be K2.

Elevation Achieve: 1,223 m (4012 ft) ascent, 2,629 m (eight,625 ft) descent
Distance: 7 km(Four.three miles) to the summit, 20 km (12.Four miles) return to Stok
Mountaineering Time: 12 hours to summit, 16 hours complete

12:00 AM departure from base camp to cross the glacier earlier than it softens up
We deliberate to remain one other evening, however I used to be having hassle respiration and loitering round all day didn’t appear to be enjoyable.

You could find the entire story of our Stok Kangri climb on Evaluation Outside right here.

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