Auden’s Col (5400 m), the Holy Grail - Gangotri to Ghuttu
Exploratory trek – very little is known about this trek connecting the pilgrim centers of Gangotri & Kedarnath.The col is situated on the connecting ridge of Gangotri III (6577m) and Jogin I (6465 m) – we approach the col from Rudugaira glacier and descend through the ice falls and the crevassed Khatling glacier.We start our expedition by heading up the Bhagirathi river till the temple shrine at Gangotri. From here we move south towards the Gangotri range, moving up in altitude slowly, and with the required level of acclimatization. We ascend to the top of the Col and then abseil to the mighty Khatling glacier.We descend the Khatling glacier and exit along the Bhilangana river, which surges from the mout of the Khatling. This is one of the most scenic walks in the Himalaya, all the way till Reeh, where the road has moved up the valley.
- Visit Gangotri
- Experience the purity of pristine nature
- Walk through Himalayan forests & Glaciers
- Do high altitude camping in the Himalayas
Day 01: Delhi-Uttarkashi-Kuflon (1550m)
Arrive Haridwar by overnight / day train. Board waiting vehicles to be driven straight to Kuflon Basics in the Assi Ganga valley (7hrs). Breakfast enroute. Overnight Kuflon.
Day 02: Kuflon-Gangotri (3042m)
After breakfast, we depart Kuflon for a 4 hr drive to Gangotri. This small town is centered around a temple of the goddess Ganga, and the impressive falls of the Bhagirathi at Gauri Kund. Gangotri was built by the Nepalese General, Amar Singh Thapa in the early 18th century. The aarti ceremony at the Gangotri is a must – see. Overnight Guest House at Gangotri (3050m).
Day 03 : Acclimatisation day in Gangotri (3050m)
We leave after an early meal and walk on the trail leading to the lake of Kedartal. The trail goes through birch forests and is steep all the way to the small campsite at Bhoj Kharak (3780m). Back to Gangotri late afternoon. Overnight Guest House at Gangotri (3050m).
Day 04: Gangotri – Nalla Camp (3760m)
We have an early morning breakfast and wait for porter’s to arrive and distribute the loads amongst themselves. We set of on the true left of the Bhagirathi river and walk for about half an hour before we turn south towards the Rudragaira Nalla. Looking back we get beautiful views of Chirbas Parbat, Matri, Yogeshwar and the other snow capped mountains. The climb is a gradual uphill through the forests of birch and maple. Nalla Camp is just above the tree line and can get quite chilly during the night.
Overnight Nalla Camp (3760m)
Day 05: Nalla Camp – Rudugaira Base Camp - Gangotri 1 Base Camp (4500m)
The day starts off with a steep climb to a huge meadow followed by a river crossing and another steep climb right up to the Rudragaira Base Camp. After lunch at the grassy campsite we continue over the glacial moraine to the Gangotri 1 Base Camp. Overnight Gangotri 1 Base Camp (4500m)
Day 06: A day to acclimatise
A day to relax and acclimatise, read, relax, or take a short walk near camp, or try and spot some wildlife. Overnight Gangotri 1 Base Camp Camp (4500m)
Day 07: Auden’s Col Base Camp (4800m)
We proceed towards the head of the valley with the Gangotri Range to the north and Jogin group to the south. Auden’s Col is at the head of the valley in the depression between the two massifs. We camp at the foot of the col. Overnight Auden’s Col Base Camp (4800m)
Day 08: Cross the Auden’s Col (5400m) & descend to Khatling Glacier Camp I (5110m)
We leave very early today, to make the climb to the col easier in the firmer morning snow. The climb is steep and can easily take 4-6 hrs depending on the snow conditions. Auden’s Col offers excellent views of the Khatling Glacier, and the mountain peaks of Jaonli, Kedarnath, Jogin & Gangotri. From the col we abseil down near-vertical walls of ice on fixed ropes to the heavily crevassed Khatling Glacier. Overnight Khatling Glacier Camp (5110m)
Day 09: Khatling Glacier Walk, Khatling Glacier Camp II (4210m)
This is one of the best days of the trek we are surrounded by high mountains massifs, with small glaciers feeding the main trunk of the Khatling glacier, as we descend towards the snout of the Khatling, negotiating crevasses along with way. We will be roped up for the overall safety of the group. Overnight Khatling Glacier Camp (4210m)
Day 10: Snout to Khatling Cave / Tambakund (3400m)
Today we descend through moraine to get to the snout of the Khatling Glacier, from the mouth of which emerges the Bhilangana river, a tributary of the Bhagirathi which meets it at the Tehri dam. We continue to camp on true right of the river near a natural cave. Overnight Camp Khatling Cave /Tambakund (3400m)
Day 11: Rest day / Contingency
We have a rest / contingency day to allow for bad weather and to have some flexibility in the itinerary. Overnight Camp
Day 12: Khatling Cave – Kharsoli (2880m)
We walk through dense mixed Himalayan Forests of oak, birch, deodar, fir & rhododendron. The gradient is gradual and this walk in the woods gives a great opportunity to commune with nature. People are allowed to enjoy the walk at their own pace and guides spread out a bit. Kharsoli has a beautiful campsite in a clearing next to a gushing stream. Its hard to resist the temptation of jumping into the stream. We will find plenty of drift wood by the stream to enjoy a big campfire in the evening.
Overnight Kharsoli Camp (2880m).
Day 13: Kharsoli – Gangi (2650m)
The walk continues through dense forest, shepherd hutments and the first signs of civilisation. Overnight Camp / GMVN Guest House at Gangi (2650m).
Day 14: Gangi – Ghuttu (1550m)
During a long day’s walk, we slowly descend to pine forests and go past the village of Reeh to finish the trek at the roadhead, 4kms upstream of Ghuttu. The road has come quite close to the village of Reeh. Overnight Camp / GMVN Guest House at Ghuttu (1550m).
Day 15: Ghuttu – Delhi
Have a relaxed start, pack up, drive from Ghuttu to Haridwar and board the evening Shatabdi Express to be back in Delhi by 10:45pm.
- All travel from Delhi and back to Delhi by road/ rail / air as applicable (by non ac car / 2 or 3 tier ac coach),
- All arrangements for staying and camping while on the trip,
- Accommodation on twin share basis in tents / rest houses / hotels,
- All meals, professional guide fee,
- Sanctuary fee / royalty / permits where applicable,
- All trekking arrangements with India'smost experienced guiding team, camp staff, cook etc.
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