About the Trek
- Dubdi Monastery
TREK ITINERARY & POLICIES
Airport/ Railway Station - Yuksom Village
Arrive at Bagdogra Airport and proceed onward journey to Yuksam Village in Western Sikkim, which serves the starting point of the trek in Western Sikkim.
(Option of rest overnight at a closer halt like Rabongla in case the group finds the stretch too long.)
Yuksom (Acclimatization Day)
Breakfast at hotel served between 8:00 – 9:00 am
ETD 9:15 am for morning walk to Dubdi Monastery:
Dubdi is the oldest monastery in Sikkim and was constructed after the coronation of the first Chogyal in 1642. It is located above Yuksom among cardamom fields and low altitude Indian Chestnut and wild fig trees.
After a 1-hour trek through the lush forests you reach the hilltop with its tiny stone monastery. The views of the surrounding farmlands are fantastic. Return back to hotel and explore the quaint farms surrounding the tiny hamlet of Yuksom.
Lunch – 12:00 – 1:00 pm at the hotel
Walk to the original coronation site where the stone throne still exists. Yuksom is a holy town and had been the ancient capital of Sikkim. Yuksom is the place where the first Chogyal (King Who Rules with Righteousness) of Sikkim was consecrated in 1642. The name Yuksom (Yoksum) means three thrones and is actually the place where the three great Buddhist masters, Gyalwa Latsun Chempo Namkha Jigme, Gnadak Sempa Phuntsok, Gyalwa Kuntey Zangpo, met according to prophecy of the ancient scriptures to crown the first Chogyal (Dharma Raja) who would rule Sikkim.
Situated at an elevation of 4,800 ft., Yuksom is famous for offering the best start-off point for high altitude trekking. The term 'Yuksom' literally means 'the meeting place of three Lamas'. Yuksom also embraces the lovely Kartok Lake.
Dinner at the hotel.
Yuksom - Tsokha
7 A.M begin the trek to the High Mountains! Today’s trek route is roughly 18 kms and will take an average of 6-8 hours to complete. The hike starts where the jeepable roads end with a gentle climb along the Rathong Chu [river] gorge, through thick forest, a haven for birdwatchers. The terrain changes from sub-tropical to alpine as it wends its way ever upward.
The first portion is the longest in distance (15 kms) but relatively gentle across three hills. Here the trees are dotted with orchids and the trail passes mountain streams. We will stop for en route for tea and hot noodle soup to prepare us for the inimitable upward ascent of the last 3 kilometres.
The second leg of the trek is a testing steep trail and is hugely satisfying upon completion. The Prek-Chu bridge marks the start of our climb ever upward. Here its not crossing hills but rather gaining altitude. We started at 4,800ft. and we will end at Tsokha at an altitude of 10,000ft. The climb is tough but slow and steady gets us there. Along this trail previous groups have spotted the black-faced langur monkeys as well a vast array of pheasant and other birds. We sleep in a mountain lodge with a view of the mighty Mt. Pandim standing guard over us.
Tsokha - Dzongri
Another early morning start to our day. After a good breakfast we again prepare for the ever-upward march to Dzongri (about 5 hours). Today the walk is shorter than the previous days’ but challenging nonetheless. We start by leaving our little hamlet of Tsokha, past its tiny Buddhist Chapel and join the trek route above, which offers a panoramic view of yesterday’s hike and Yoksum far below. Immediately you can see the change in the trees, less rainforest and more alpine – as well as the route which now follows the ancient yak trails used to carry yak butter and cheese down from the pasture land above to the villages below.
Here previous groups have spotted Red Panda in the wild. The trail is well defined are strikingly beautiful but again today is about gaining altitude so appreciate the small flats and downs you encounter!
We will take a small break for hot tea at Pethang after a hike of about 3 hours and start a small steep upwards push to Menlapsa at equal height (13,800 ft.) to Dzongri. From there Dzongri is not too far or the walk too tough. We have reached the tree line so our giant Rhododendron trees have shrunk back to shrub size and the walk is in full panoramic view of the Singalila Mountain Range forming our western border with Nepal.
We arrive in time for hot noodles and tea to our camp at Dzongri. Time for a well earned afternoon rest because the next day starts at sunrise.
Dzongri (High Altitude Hikes & Exploring the area)
Dablakhang (14,300 ft.) herself is a sacred hill and almost everybody takes the time to say a prayer here amongst the juniper incense and prayer flags blown aloft by the winds. Dabla in Sikkimese translates to ‘guardian angel’ and it’s a beautiful place in time to give a thought for yourself, family, friends, and all those to whom you hold dear.
Drop back down to camp for breakfast and then spend the day exploring the high mountain meadows and hills that surround you. So as a suggestion due to shortage of time we believe it would be best you do a hike to the region of ‘Dzongri-La’. As the name suggests, ‘La’ means pass and this is a good place to hike from your camp for wonderful views of the Mt Khanchendzonga Base camp at the ‘Rathong’ Glacier. Also means that you will be in view of this glacier and be able to see where higher mountainerring expeditions take off from. Dzongri- La is approx. 4-5 hours pf walking in total back and forth from camp. Hence this covers your days walks and explorations.
Return to camp for night and rest.
Dzongri - Tsokha
We normally give our lead guide the choice of choosing return trails and he would best decide on the spot if there are views worth catching on the way to take any small diversions or alternate routes.
You’ll make it back to Tsokha in time for lunch and a leisurely afternoon’s well-earned rest.
Tsokha - Yuksom
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Meals as specified in the itineraries (Veg/Non Veg preferences to be specified while booking)
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