Frozen river trekking- An experience of a life time


The Zanskar River flows through one of the harshest and most remote landscapes on this planet. The frozen river of Zansar is the most exciting and beautiful, hiking trip, which attracts a large number of hikers from all over the world. The Zansar trail is a major part of the ancient silk route. The people of this region still use the Chadar still as the main route of transport during the winter months, while the other roads through the mountain passes are blocked with snow and ice. Frozen river trekking on Zansar gives you a chance to explore the remote hamlets of Ladakh and get close to the culture, lifestyle along with traditions of the place, which have not changed in centuries.


The frozen river trek on Zansar is done in the month of January and February when the water of the river freezes and forms a thick chadar, which is stable for walking by the third week of January. The trek is known to start from Chiling, which is around 3 hours drive from Leh. The trekking is of nine days, and it is done in such a way that your trek starts and ends in Chiling.


One might hit altitudes of 11000 feet during the trek. If you are familiar with the climate of Leh, then you will not encounter any sort of problem. The temperature here is very cold and may go beyond zero degrees Celsius. One must keep some additional layers of clothing on your body with some amount of good winter wear. Buy some parka jackets for women before you venture to this part of the world as they can keep the winter at bay. Without proper amount of winter wear, it is impossible to survive this trek.


While trekking on the Zansar River, you need to keep in mind that you are walking in your garden. The chadar can vary in thickness in a number of places. You need to keep it slow and check the surface before stepping on it. Keep an eye on the pugmarks on the chadar. You might be in the area of a snow leopard, and if you are lucky enough you might be able to spot it, and if possible take a snap with him.

Various travel agencies provide you packages for frozen river trek, which include pick up from the airport and drop from the hotel. This includes the driving from Leh to Chilling. Cost of mattresses, guide as well as porter fees are included in this. Some tour organizers also give sleeping bags as part of the package itself. With the advent of the internet, locating a tour agency has become an easy task. All one needs to do is a systematic search on any search engine and a host of names will emerge.

So, grab one at the earliest and book your dream trip!

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