Kalindikhal Pass Trek

By Venkat Gandikota gandikota.v@gmail.com | 2011

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You see large glacial lake in Sweta glacier; and Mt. Satopanth at top ie about half way thru the trek. The Kalindikhal Trek takes you half way round Garwhal from the Bhagirathi to the Alaknanda Valley.

The trek starts from Gangotri and takes you through Nandavan, the base of the Bhagirathi peaks, a place that offers an unparalled view of the Shivling peak. You see river Bhagirathi at camp Chidbasa on way to Bhojbasa.

You see Bhagirathi river, trekking trail along the river. After gaining suitable acclimatization we ascend to Vasukital Lake, a stunning place to camp surrounded by towering snow-covered peaks.

You see Bhagirathi peaks 1,2,3. From Vasukital Lake climb on to Sweta Glacier and begin the challenging crossing of the Kalindikhal Pass.

You see David Gallabhar at Tapovan (4460 metres). A tough climb from where you feel that there is little else left to be see. It is as if you are part of this majestic setting of snow peaks.

You see me (extreme left ) and group members at Nandanvan (4337 mtres). From the Kalindikhal Pass the trail then descends to Arwatal (3920 mtres) and to Mana (3133 mtres) last village on the Tibetan frontier.

You see crevices in the Vasukhi glacier. The trek fittingly ends at Badrinath with a visit to the holy temple and then travel via Rishikesh to Delhi.

Deep crevices and ice slides in the Vasuki glacier. Visit the hot water springs at Badrinath and recharge yourself.

You see Vasuki Tal (lake) and camp. In short route is Gangotri, Nandavan, climb Vasukital Lake, climb Sweta glacier, cross Kalindhikhal Pass, descend Arawatal, Mana and Badrinath.

You see Vasuki Parbat (peak). Vasuki Tal is the source of the Vasuki Ganga that drains into the Mandakini.

Camp Khada Pathar 5,456 metres. Heavy snowfall. Trek duration is about 15 days ex Haridwar.

Vasuki Parbat and camp Khada Pathar. Max altitude during trek is 19500 feet.

Mt Satopanth-highest in the region-center background & glacier. Best time to go for trek end June to early September.

Sveta Glacier, massive upheavels. You need a inner line permit to tour the region.

Sveta Glacier 5520 mtres

Sveta camp on moraine

On the way to Kalindikhal; on the glacier

Step` glacier; rather uncommon and beautiful.

Onward to Kalindikhal Pass

On the way to Kalindikhal Pass. On 23/7/1963 Ms Bhakti Biswas became the first Indian women to do the Kalindhikal Trek. Her team was led by Swami Sundaranand and included, among others, her husband Dr. Mani Biswas and Umaprsad Mukhopadhyay

Another large glacier; on way to Kalindikhal Pass; note ridge also covered by deep snow

On the way to Kalindikhal Pass

On the way to Kalindikhal Pass

Lovely scene - On the way to Kalindikhal Pass

To Kalindikhal Pass

Kalindikhal base camp; having hot cuppa of chai - tea

Kalindi Base Camp 5570 mtres & glacier behind

Base camp to Kalindikhal Pass, see massive glacier top right.

To Kalindikhal Pass. Note the pass is a gap between Avalanche Peak and Kalindhi Peak.

To Kalindikhal Pass.

You see Kalindikhal Pass left and Avalanche Peak on right

Lovely scene on the way.

On the way, Pass is round the bend.

Avalanche Peak, the pass is on the left

To the Pass, u see Avalanche Peak

Almost on the Pass.

On the Pass.

Steep slope to the Pass.

On the Pass.

Venkat & David on the Pass, Kalindhi Peak (6,080 mtres) behind

On the Pass, Kalindhi Peak (5970 mtres) behind.

Descent from the Pass.

Descent from the Pass.

Descent from the Pass, left is Mana Peak, right is Kalindhi Peak

Descent from the Pass.

Descent from the Pass.

Descent from Pass, 80 mtr slop down, very steep.

Descent from Pass. To read personal experience of trek Click here.

Descent from Pass, Kalindhi to Raj Parao (4920 mtres)

Descent from Pass, Kalindhi to Raj Parao. Narrations borrowed from various sites and trekkers. Thanks to them.

Walking in the snow thru bad weather. Sometimes weather is so bad cannot see beyond a few feet. Editor - after seeing these pictures I hope to do the trek some day.

Another super picture of group members walking in the snow. My heart goes for the porters carry bags in high altitudes. Cheers to the boys.

Inside the tent it was comfortable as you can see.

You see us crossing fast moving river. Kalindikhal trek is truly a trekker’s paradise – lofty snow peaks, lush green valleys, fast flowing rivers, enchanting mountains, rough glaciers, rocky screens, & crevassed snowfields.

Mana Peak ie close to Badrinath. Let us resolve to protect the Himalayas and nature overall. We must preserve water and use less plastic.

David somewhere during the trek, lovely view.

See the reflection of the snow clad peak in water.

You see our tents on a clear day against the background of the rising sun.

This picture is representative of the trip, snowing in the mountains and enjoying it.

You see Dev Prayag. It is situated on the confluence point of two holy rivers Bhagirathi and Alakananda. It is the point where these two rivers join to form the Holy Ganga. The town is the seat of the pandits of Badrinath. Height is 2,265 mtres. My pranam to Ganga Maiya.

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