Kedarkantha Trek | One of the Best Winter Treks in India

Kedarkantha Trek is Uttarakhand’s most famous trek, especially during the winters. Situated at a height of 3850m above sea level deep inside the Tons river valley, it offers spectacular 360 degree views of the mighty peaks around. Not only does one get to see the peaks of Uttarakhand, but also of Himachal Pradesh. The trail goes through snow covered landscape dotted with blanketed pine trees. It is a different world in itself during these winter months. We also recommend this trek to those who are planning to trek during the winters for the first time.

 

How to reach Sankri ?

Nearest Airport to Kedarkantha trek – Jolly Grant

Nearest Railway Station to Kedarkantha trek – Dehradun Railway Station

By private Vehicle – You can book a cab from Dehradun/Mussoorie. Prices range between INR 8000-10,000

By public transport – A bus leaves every morning from Dehradun Railway Station for Sankri, the starting point of the trek.

Sankri

 

Where to Stay in Sankri ?

There are few hotel and home-stays in Sankri from which you can choose from. We recommended:

 

When is the best time to do the Kedarkantha Trek?

Kedarkantha trek is open all year round but is essentially categorised as a winter trek.

Best months to visit – November to February

 

What is the Itinerary for Kedarkantha Trek?

Day 1 – Dehradun to Sankri

Day 2 – Sankri to Juda ka Talab

Day 3 – Juda Ka Talab to Kedarkantha Base Camp

Day 4 – Basecamp to Peak and back to Sankri

Day 5 – Sankri to Dehradun

Via eUttaranchal.com

 

Kedarkantha Trek Route

Day 1 – Dehradun to Sankri

The journey from Dehradun to Sankri is a beautiful one. On reaching Mussoorie we gain altitude and from there onwards we are surrounded with forests all over. We cross towns like Purola and Mori before reaching Sankri. The atmosphere of the valley is blessed with sweet pine scent.

Distance  – 190 km

Time – 9-10 hours 

 

Day 2 – Sankri to Juda Ka Talab

We recommend you to start Day 2 early as it involves steep climbing the entire time. After crossing the forest check point at Sankri, you will see a trail, on your right, that leads inside the forest. The trail takes you into the pine forest and starts to climb sharply until you reach a ridge after a while. There is only one trail that leads to Juda Ka Talab so continue on the path till you reach there. It is advisable to not walk on the frozen lake as the ice may crack anytime.

Distance – 4 – 5 kms

Time – 3 hours

 

Day 3 – Juda ka Talab to Basecamp

Day 3 is relatively easier as you only need you reach the Kedarkantha basecamp. Moving past Juda Ka Talab, a trail takes you deeper into the dense pine forests.  On reaching the basecamp, enjoy the rest of the day soaking the sun before the chill sets in.

Distance – 4-5 kms

Time – 2 -3 hours

Night sky on the Kedarkantha trek. Photo by Jyotirmoy Paul via IndiaHikes

 

Day 4 – Basecamp to Summit to Sankri

The journey to the Kedarkantha summit begins as early as 3 am. You will reach the summit by sunrise. From the summit you’ll will get a 360 degree view of Uttarakhand, Chaainsheel Pass and Kailash ranges of Himachal. Peaks like Swargarohini, Bandarpoonch, Black peak, Ranglana among the Yamunotri and Gangotri ranges are clearly visible. From the top, you can also see the Har Ki Dun valley below. After enjoying your time at the summit, start descending towards the Basecamp and from there to Sankri.

Distance – 12-15 kms

Time – 3 hours to summit/ 5 – 6 hours to Sankri

The view from the top

 

Day 5 – Sankri to Dehradun

You will have to take the same picturesque drive back to Dehradun. The landscape slowly changes from pine forests to wider roads as we head back towards Dehradun, finally opening up into the bustling city life.

 

Things to remember for Kedarkantha Trek

As a winter trek, Kedarkantha can be challenging if not prepared for. Here are some of the essentials that are absolutely necessary for this trek:

      • All networks besides BSNL stop working after Purola.
      • Water proof shoes – As you will trek on the snow, waterproof and warm shoes are necessary to keep your feet warm.
      • Windproof jacket – The Kedarkantha Basecamp is know to be quite chilly because it isn’t surrounded by trees. A windproof jacket is essential to protect yourself from the harsh winter wind.
      • Head torch – The summit to the peak begins at 3 am. Head-torch is a must.
      • Sunglasses – If you decide to trek in the winter months, sunglasses are essential to protect the eyes from the harsh sun reflection of the snow.
      • Warm thermals – Temperatures plummet down to -8 degree Celsius at night. Warm thermals are a must during the entire trek.
      • Thick waterproof gloves – Exposure at night and early morning can be quite painful. It is thus necessary to protect your hands at all times.

 

You might also like to check out this video by our community member Abhimanyu Singh Dalal who popularly goes by the name – Outside My Rucksack

 

 

Also check out these Himalayan Trek Guides that we have shared on this website, and don’t forget to Pin this detailed guide about Kedarkantha Trek for future reference.

 

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