Bara Bhangal Trek

Trip Details

  • Trip Type: Trekking

  • Region: Kullu and Kangra Valley - Himachal

  • Grade: Moderately Challenging

  • Duration: 10 days

  • Max Altitude: 4800m

  • Batch Dates: Custom Trips only

Bara Bhangal Trek Overview

This trek, also known as the Shepherds trail trek takes you over Kalihani and Thamsar passes and is limited to experienced trekkers in rugged back country and with good know-how of hiking and camping. One of the more challenging routes, it takes one from the lush green Kullu valley to the stark landscapes of Bara Bhangal range. But for the trouble, it is a very fruitful trek that people looking for an isolated, in-tune-with-nature routes.

Trip Cost

This is a custom departure tour and so please write to us for prices and more info on this trek. 

Detailed Itinerary

Day 01: The participants arrive in Manali.

 

Day 02: Manali - Lama Dugh (3017m) 
Duration: 4 hours

The climb is through thick forests but there is no water point after departing from Manali. As one gains height in this steep climb, the distinct views of different faces of Indrasan, Deo Tibba and peaks of Bara Shigri glacier open up. In the last lag, the path turns to the right and one traverses the ridge horizontally and enters the campsite on an alpine plateau studded with a thick growth of alpine flowers.

 

Day 03: Lama Dugh - Riyali Thach (3400m)
Duration: 3 hours

The height gain on this day is approximately 1 km. The trek is through steep a ridge below Khand Pari Tibba (4000m). From this point, one can have a magnificent glimpse of Manali, situated on the left bank of River Beas and the whole upper Kullu valley, which appears swathed in the different colors of the season.

 

Day 04: Riyali Thach - Base of Kalihani Pass (4010m) 
Duration: 6 hours

A longish day. The trail proceeds over open meadows initially followed by a steep descent to a stream. Crossing it, the path continues in a steep climb for about three hours till you arrive at the camp at the base of the Kalihani Pass. Make sure you catch the views of Deo Tibba and Indrasan peaks from the campsite.

 

Day 05: Base of Kalihani - Devi ki Marhi (3850m) via Kalihani Pass (4725m)
Duration: 8 hours

Today will be a long, arduous day with a steep climb to the pass crossing a stretch of scree, a moraine, and the Kalihani glacier. Take time off at the pass to get a splendid 360 degree view of hanging glaciers, the Pir Panjal and Dhauladhar ranges. A steep descent across another glacier and four beautiful glacial lakes will bring you to the camp at the gaddi (shepherd) campsite of Devi ki Marhi.

 

Day 06: Devi Ki Marhi - Dal Marhi (3900m)
Duration: 6 hours

The trail first crosses over the Kalihani Nullah and descends into oak and birch forests. Most of the path then is flat with few ups and downs. Just before the end of day though is a steep climb before you arrive at the Dal Marhi campsite.

 

Day 07: Dal Marhi - Bara Bhangal (2882m)
Duration: 6 hours

The trail now continues down the Ravi river into the deodar forest, to the only large village in the valley, Bara Bhangal.

 

Day 08: Bara Bhangal - Mardh (3830m)
Duration: 5 hours

Today we will start climbing towards the next big pass, Thamsar. The trail winds up through pine, deodar and birch forests with mountain streams to break the monotony. The campsite at Mardh is near the base of the Thamsar glacier.

 

Day 09: Mardh - Plachak (2721m) via Thamsar Pass (4878m)
Duration: 7 hours

Another day of steep ascent over moraine, scree and glacier. The climb is broken by a small lake just below the pass. From on top of Thamsar, you will get your first glimpse of the lush Kangra valley. On the other side of the pass, it's a steep, long descent till you reach the campsite at Plachak, well below the tree line.

 

Day 10: Plachak - Rajgundha (2440m) - Billing (2310m)
Duration: 6 hours

The easiest day of the trek so far. The path is flat and easy, passing through pine forests with many mountain streams. The valley widens and you get great views of the open Kangra valley. A vehicle will pick you up at Billing and drop you to Bir or Dharamshala. Or you can choose to fly from Billing to Bir on a tandem paraglider.

Cost Includes

  • Camping Tents, Kitchen tents, Sleeping bags (Holofill) and Carry mats.
  • Nutritious, high calorie vegetarian food will be served for the whole trek.
  • Guide, cook and camp helpers.
  • Porters/ Horses to carry loads on  the whole route.
  • Participants are not expected to carry any loads other than a small daypack with camera, some trail layers and some trail food.
  • Two people will be accommodated in one tent.
  • Transport Manali hotel to Road Head and Billing to Dharamshala.
  • Hotel accommodations in Manali for 1 day before the trek and in Dharamshala for one day after the trek.

Cost Excludes

  • All expenses of personal nature like drinks, tips, telephone calls, mineral water etc.
  • Sleeping Bags. (We recommend to get bags which are comfort rated to - 5 to - 8 deg C)
  • Accommodation and food in Manali.
  • Medical and evacuation expenses, we strongly recommend purchasing a suitable insurance cover.

Things you need to get

Pack:
- Backpack 40 - 50 Lts with rain cover.This you will need in case you choose to offload your larger pack onto a horse/porter
- Day Pack 15 - 20 lts - You will use this to carry your camera, water bottle, Trail layers, trail food etc.
Footwear:
-Trekking Shoes: Please do not wear sports shoes as on most treks as we go higher it gets harder to use the sports shoes. We recommend shoes with a good hard sole and also ankle support preferable water proof. While we do not subscribe to any particular brand you can try the Quechua forclaz 100, 500 or 600.
Socks:
- 2 -3 pairs of cotton socks.
- 2 pairs of woolen socks ( these are ideal to sleep in and best to use when in camp. We do not recommend them while trekking).
Clothing:
- Pants: 3 pairs (including the ones you wear) - Ideal are the quick dry light weight synthetic pants. Alternatively track pants are also comfortable to trek in. We do not recommend you get Denims or Jeans as they get hard to trek in.
- Tshirts 3 pairs (including the ones you are wearing) - Preferable cotton t-shirts that are full sleeves. You can also choose to get T-shirts with collars, they offer extra protection for the neck from sun burns.
- Synthetic Fleece Jacket - 1 pair.
- Wind proof/ Water proof Jacket - 1 pair.
- Down filled / Hollow fiber fill insulated Jacket - 1 -pair ( optional - get this if you want to stay extra warm at camps.)
- Thermal liners - 1 pair upper and lower (optional).
Accessories:
- Raincoat/ Poncho - what ever you get make sure it is something that will cover your daypack and camera too.
- Warm Beanie - make sure it is something that covers your ears. You can also use buffs, scarfs etc in addition to your beanie.
- Gloves - Lightweight synthetic gloves made of Fleece or you can also use woollen gloves.
- Sun Cap- 1 no
- Sun Glasses with good UV protection.
Other necessary things that we recommend you get:
- Toiletries - Sunscreen SPF 40+, Moisturizer, Lip balm, Soap, Toilet paper.
- Repair Kit (needle and thread).
- Headlamp/ Torch.
- Camera.
- Water Bottle- Ideally keep two bottle 1 litre each.
- Trekking Pole - Optional.
- Plastic Packing covers. (Please pack all your gear in waterproof plastic bags so that your clothes etc do not get wet while on horses or porters. Also carry extra plastic bags in case you need to pack wet clothes.)

Accommodations

Accommodations will be provided as per the itinerary in budget hotels and camping tents on twin occupancy.

Terms and Conditions

The terms and conditions mentioned below shall apply for all programs undertaken through us. While maximum efforts are made to ensure the safety of the participant. However, Above14000ft their management or employees will not be responsible for injuries of any nature, mental or physical, whether caused directly or indirectly due to any adventures or their allied activities.

1. All participants are requested to download the risk form sign it and get it with them on their respective trips. You can download you risk forms here

2. Payment terms will be 100% in advance along with program confirmation. We accept online bank tranfers.

3. Refund and cancellation:

- If you cancel 45 before the trip begins, Above 14000ft will retain 30% of the trip cost.
- If you cancel 30 days before the trip begins, Above 14000ft will retain 50 % of the trip cost.
- If you cancel less than 30 days before the trip begins, or, are not present when the trip begins, there will be no refund.

4. Above14000ft will take every care to ensure that itineraries are followed to the letter but circumstances beyond control may necessitate changes. In case of changes routes and properties, Above14000ft will accept no liability but make arrangements for substitution of equal.

5. Above14000ft will accept no liability for any damage, losses and expenses suffered by any client as a result of sickness, quarantine, weather conditions, war, strikes, riots or any other cause outside our control.

6. Any damage, other than that attributable to fair wear and tear, to the equipments by the participants will be billed to you. Our decision on all such matters will be final and binding.

7. In the event of any dispute, all matters will be subject to the sole jurisdiction of the courts of Himachal and the prevailing law of India shall prevail. Recourse to the courts of any other country will not be applicable.

 

Risk Management

We feel that it is an ethical obligation for us to educate our guests to the potential risks and hazards inherent in all outdoor programs and activities. We believe that it is our responsibility to provide quality curricula, skilled staff and sound risk management plans and procedures.

Our guests and our reputation are extremely valuable to us. We are honored to work with quality people and maintain an excellent reputation. Toward that end, risk management and safety is of paramount importance at Above 14000ft. Our safety record is excellent.

Staff competence and sound operational procedures are the core of our risk management system at Above 14000ft. We are proud of the overall quality of our staff screening, training, evaluation, operating, emergency response and evacuation procedures. Consistent emphasis is placed on accident prevention, judgment and decision-making that occur during planning of our programs. Our risk management procedures and practices meet or exceed industry standards and are constantly re-evaluated and improved as needed.

All outdoor programs contain inherent risks to participants with the potential to cause personal property loss or damage, illness, injury and even death. While Above 1400ft provides professional staff and quality risk management, we cannot completely eradicate all risks or hazards. No matter how well-managed, all outdoor activities involve unforeseen hazards (rockfall, sudden illness, being bitten or stung by a wild animal or insect, cold air and water temperatures, even other participants) that can present risks to participants and even to skilled instructors. Life is unpredictable so is Mother nature.

The community of Above 14000ft instructors is comprised of experienced outdoor educators and professional mountaineers that are informed of our emergency response procedures. In addition, all have current first aid certification.

It is a standard practice on every Above 14000ft program for guides to cover applicable risk management issues and rules designed to prevent accidents; for guests adherence to the rules and a positive mental attitude are essential.

Above 14000ft conducts a reconnaissance of each program area prior to bringing guests. This means that someone from Above 14000ft has been to the program site to look at the facilities, talk with the locals, check travel distances / times, locate the nearest medical facilities, and generally get an overview of the challenge level of the area.

Minor medical incidents (e.g. minor allergies, upset stomach, diarrhea, minor sprains, bruises, and blisters) may be treated in the field by basic first aid, over-the-counter remedies, medications or rest. More serious injuries and illnesses (e.g. fractures, severe allergic reactions etc) will require evacuation of the patient to the nearest medical facility, in which case we attempt to contact client administrators and parents.

The remoteness of some of the areas in which we travel combines a good news-bad news situation: they are among the most beautiful places on the planet and they can create complex evacuation and communication problems in the event of an emergency. While we carry a communication device (radio or cell phones) on all of our courses for emergencies, this does not guarantee reliable communication to support teams or rescue. Radios and cell phone reliability is effected by atmospheric and rugged terrain conditions. Sometimes groups may be separated from the radio or phone for several hours or more than a day.

While Above1 4000ft provides professional staff and practices quality risk management techniques we make no claim to completely eradicate all risks. If we did, we could not call our programs "adventure", nor would the benefits be as great, because after all, risk is an integral part of adventure. In the best sense, to participate in an adventure is to engage in an exciting or remarkable undertaking, in which risks are encountered, dealt with, and successfully negotiated.