Category: Moderate Adventure.
The Markha trek is the most frequently visited trek in Ladakh for many reasons. Endangered and rare Himalayan wildlife, high passes and remote buddhist villages that are still linked to the outside world only by trails. You will get glimpses of traditional, Ladakhi villagelife and be met by hospitability and friendliness along the way, before entering into the rough wilderness that surrounds the two high passes on the trek.
- 50% advance payment confirms your booking.
- We will transport all your belongings for you so that you only have to carry your day pack with camera, water bottle and jacket.
- We serve three meals a day including snacks and drinks. We provide a variety of tasty healthy food including Indian, Chinese and Western meals with lots of vegetables and fruit.
What is included in the tour
- Road transportation from Leh to Leh by car.
- Accommodation in tents on twin share basis during trekking.
- All meals (Day 1 Lunch to Day 18 Lunch)
- All camping gear including tents and sleeping mattress. Kitchen, Dining and toilet tent
- Permits and Entrance fees.
- Good English speaking guide, cooks and porters, mules.
What is NOT included in the tour
- Accommodation and Meals in Leh.
- Personal Insurance.
- All alcoholic beverages and personal expenses.
- Good down sleeping bags can be provided at an additional cost of Rs.200 per day.
- Two high passes above 5000m
- Markha Valley
- Heightest Camping Nimaling at 4700m
- Interaction with locals and insight into their lifestyle
- highest point 5200m
Day 01 :
Leh- Zingchen- Yurutse 4100m (1 hr dive & 4-5 hrs hike)
We drive from Leh to Spituk and continue on a dirt jeep road into a parched and exposed region. After about an hr drive we will enter the Zingchen Valley where the Rumbak River flows into the Indus which makes it way down a canyon. Further into the valley lies a beautiful village of Rumbak, inhabited by 15 families. From Rumbak it’s a short walk to our camp, but very important one in terms of acclimatization, so we will not hurry and take our time to reach the camp.
Camping/all meals. Elevation +620m -20m
Day 02 :
Yurutse – Shingo 4000 m via Ganda La 4900 m (5-6 hours)
A gradual but long ascent will take us to the pass of Ganda La. The Stupas and prayer flags mark the top of the pass, where one may get glimpse of wildlife such as blue sheep, Marmots and Arghali. Views of the lofty Zanskar Range and the distant Himalaya Range are spectacular. A gradual descent will bring us to the tiny village of Shingo, inhabited by only 2 families. This will be our campsite for tonight.
Camping/ all meals. Elevation +800m -900m
Day 03 :
Shingo – Hamurtse 3500 m (5-6 hours)
Shortly after leaving our campsite we enter a narrow gorge will spectacular colors and rock formations. We continue descending in the gorge until it opens onto the green valley of Skiu. In this idyllic village lies an old monastery and ruins of an old castle, once a rest stop for the Royal family on their way to Srinagar. After getting some rest here, we continue to Hamurtse, a green pasture land by the Markha River.
Camping/ all meals. Elevation +50m -550m
Day 04 :
Hamurtse- Umlung 3900 m (4-5 hrs hike)
The trail continues along the Markha River, with some crossings now and then. We pass the remains of old hermitage caves high on the opposite cliffs. Inside are the remains of tiny caves where lamas once sat in meditation, platforms carved in rock. Look also at the Chortens, inside are piles of tiny 'Tsatsas', the remains of ashes of the departed formed into tiny pyramids. After about 4 hours of hike we reach the village of Markha, the largest village in the valley and inhabited by 20 families. After taking a good rest in the village, we continue along the Markha River and soon come across a mountain that seats the auspicious monastery of Techa. It’s a steep half an hour climb to the monastery, but it’s worth visiting. From here, it is a short walk to Umlung.
Camping/ all meals. Elevation +440m -40m
Day 05 :
Umlung - Thachungtse 4200 m (4-5 hours)
The trail continues along the Markha River, past old stone-mills, a ruined castle and the village of Hankar, the last one in the valley. After leaving the village of Umlung, we will get our first view of snowy peaks above Nimaling, which will stay in sight until we cross Kongmaru La. Our campsite for tonight will be the lovely green pasture of Thachungste.
Camping/ all meals. Elevation +380m -80m
Day 06 :
Thachungtse - Nimaling 4600 m (3-4 hours)
Today we will gradually climb our way up to Nimaling, where the people of Markha Valley bring their herds of Yaks and sheep to graze during the summer months. Nimaling is the highest camp on the trek providing us with the spectacular views of the snowy peak of Kangyatse (6400 m) and the endless range of mountains that go as far as the eye can see.
Camping/ all meals. Elevation +400m -0m
Day 07 :
Nimaling- Shang Sumdo 3750m via Kongmaru La 5200m- Leh (5-6 hrs trek & 1 hr drive)
We will gradually ascend towards our second pass, Kongmaru La. The trail is easy and little steep at the last section. Once on the top we will have wonderful view of the Indus Valley and the Ladakh Range. The descent is quite steep, but will gradually level out as we enter Shang Gorge,
with its fascinating rock formations. More river crossings bar our way before we arrive at the sour-spring of Chhukirmo and further to Chogdo. The trail becomes easier and the valley opens up as we get closer to the village of Shang Sumdo. Here will be met by our car, waiting to drive us to Leh.
We will say farewell to our horseman and horses and hop in the car to head back to Leh.
Guesthouse/ breakfast . Elevation +650m -1500m