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  • Trip introduction

    When the frigid winter hits Ladakh, the Zanskar river freezes over, morphing into a sheet of ice so thick that it brings in throngs of adventure-seekers that trek over what flowed freely just a few weeks back. You, too, will be trekking on the glassy surface of this river, passing waterfalls that are frozen mid-flow, hot springs that bubble up from the earth’s hot core, and sleeping in tents and caves as the sound of the icy river cracking pierces through the dead of the night.

    While you sleep, the Chadar cracks and re-freezes in new patterns, creating different landscapes every day. On relatively bright nights, the moonlight bounces off these frozen landscapes, making the Zanskar river gleam as it slithers through the deep and dark gorges. Watch out for the perfect photo-opp on the Chadar trek – a picture of your boots on a sheet of glass-like ice, with the bubbles of the river frozen in place below, or perhaps a shot of tiny you beneath a gigantic spate of a waterfall frozen in time! It’s going to be an unforgettable experience!

    MEDICAL TEST: If you do not clear the medical test in Leh, you will not be allowed to join the trek. There are no refunds in this case, but the operator will let you stay on in the guest-house in Leh for the duration of the trek. There will be no other inclusions (meals, transport, travel, etc) provided during this time.

    Destination

    The Chadar trek route takes you over the frozen surface of the Zanskar river, during the coldest months of the year. Temperatures can drop as low as -20 degrees during this time. Although the Chadar trek has gained popularity in recent years, it is still an offbeat trek in a place so isolated that you and your group might be the only people as far as your eye can see. Along your route, you'll see frozen waterfalls, spectacular river confluences, all forms and hues of ice, and ancient caves and cliffs.

    Destination highlights

    Trek on glassy sheets of ice of the frozen Zanskar river. | Sleep in tents pitched in caves along the river and wake up to pristine white landscapes. | Take a dip in the freezing water, if you dare! | Earn bragging rights to one of the most epic treks in the world.

    Activity Details

    10700

    11150

    10400

    68 kms

    36 hrs

    11 kms

    Trip details
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  • Cancellation policy

    For cancellations made 15 days or more before the check-in for the Chadar trek: 70% of the total trip cost will be refunded, minus any transaction charges and pre-paid services.

    If you cancel the Chadar trek 0-14 days before the departure date: No refund.

    No show: No refund.

    Rules on trip

    The Chadar trek involves uphill climbing for extended periods of time over a frozen river terrain. Accordingly, travellers should preferably have experience of at least one high-altitude trek in the Himalayas.

    Travellers are required to adhere to instructions of the trek leader during the Chadar trek.

    Consumption of alcohol, drugs, tobacco products and cigarettes is strictly prohibited during the trip.

    Travellers are requested to treat the local culture with respect and avoid littering, defacing property and monuments and causing general disturbance.

    Additional instructions, booking policies, terms and conditions

    Travellers will be sent a format of a medical certificate and a disclaimer form to be completed before beginning the trek.

    Travellers will need to pay for environment and wildlife fee, mandatory adventure insurance, permits, and medical test charges. You will have to pay this in cash on the spot. Please ensure you carry about INR 5000 in cash for the same, per person.

    Travellers are requested to limit the weight in their bags to 8-10 kgs, for ease of carrying during the trek.

    The tour operator takes utmost care to ensure safety of the travellers and shall not be held responsible for any mishap, accident or loss of life during the Chadar trek.

    The tour operator reserves the right to cancel or alter the itinerary of the trek to ensure maximum safety for travellers as well as staff.

    Travellers will be required bear any additional costs arising due to unforeseen circumstances such as bad weather, road blocks etc.

    If you do not clear the medical test in Leh, you will not be allowed to join the trek. There are no refunds in this case, but the operator will let you stay on in the guest-house in Leh for the duration of the trek. There will be no other inclusions (meals, transport, travel, etc) provided during this time.
    • Sheets of ice formed over the Zanskar River in time for the Chadar Trek
  • Includes / Excludes

    Includes

    • Transportation from Leh to road head and back in a shared, private SUV

    • Accommodation at a guesthouse in Leh on twin or triple-sharing basis
    • Accommodation in twin-sharing tents throughout the trek
    • Kitchen/dining tents and toilet tents
    •  Vegetarian meals while on the trek
    • All required trekking and camping equipment 
    • Oxygen cylinders and first-aid kit
    • Experienced guide and support staff 
    • All taxes

    Excludes

    • Travel arrangements from base city to Leh

    • Airport transfers between Leh Airport and Leh guesthouse (can be arranged for INR 500, one-way)
    • Extra charge of INR 5000 per person, for environmental and wildlife fee, permit fee by ALTOA and LAHDC, mandatory adventure insurance, medical test charges. This will have to be paid on the spot in cash, so please do carry enough cash per person.
    • Porters/mules to carry personal luggage (can be arranged for INR 750 per day, per bag of maximum 10 kgs)
    • Any costs arising out of unforeseen circumstances such as bad weather, road blocks etc.
    • Personal expenses such as tips to staff, additional meals and beverages etc.
    • Adventure travel or medical insurance
    • Anything not mentioned in inclusions

    What to Wear

    What to Wear

    • Synthetic track pants
    • Full-sleeved t-shirts, preferably with collars
    • Warm fleece jacket
    • Full-sleeved down jacket
    • Thermal wear (upper and lower)
    • Sports socks and woollen socks
    • Gumboots
    • Woollen monkey cap/balaclava
    • Woollen hand gloves
    • Synthetic waterproof gloves
    • Woollen head-scarf or muffler
    • Not to wear - Expensive gadgets or jewellery
    • Denim jeans and sneakers
    • Hard luggage like suitcases, trolley bags etc.

    What not to Wear

    • Loose clothing that will tangle around you while swimming
    • Restrictive clothing
    • Flip-flops

    Equipment / Gear

    You need to get

    • Rucksack (55 litre+, with rain cover)
    • Day pack (20 litre+, only if hiring a personal porter)
    • ID proof with photocopies (mandatory)
    • Passport-sized photograph (mandatory)
    • Medical and disclaimer certificate (sent after booking confirmation, mandatory)
    • Camera with memory cards and batteries
    • Insulated water bottle
    • Toilet paper
    • Trekking pole (mandatory)
    • Quick-dry towel
    • Sunglasses (polarised, anti-glare)
    • LED Torch (extra batteries)
    • Cold cream and sunscreen lotion (SPF 40+)
    • Lip balm
    • Plastic bags for wet clothes
    • Personal toiletries

    Medical Kit

    • Specific personal or prescribed medication
    • Personal first-aid kit