Markha valley trek – A short Popular Trek in Ladakh
The Markha Valley Trek passes through the green oasis of the Markha Valley guarded by Kang Yatse 6400mts from east and Zanskar range from the south west. From any of the high points you can have breath taking views of Saser Kangri, Stok Kangri, Kang Yatse and Nun Kun. This is the best Himalayan scenery that one can witness in the entire Markha Valley Trek.
Sculpted canyons, fantastic rock formations, medieval villages, Buddhist Monasteries and snow filled peaks is what in incorporated in the Markha Valley Trek. In a sence, the Markha Valley Trek is the answer to the likes of the Short Sandakphu Trek in Darjeeling Himalayas.
To put it simply, Markha Valley Trek is one of the most popular trek in Ladakh that gives you the best of Ladakh. Located close to Leh the trek Route runs mostly below 4000 metres with camp sites at around 3500m. This Trek located in the Hemis National Park, there is always an opportunity to spot some rare species of wild animals.
Markha Valley Trek Itinerary
Day 01: Drive from Leh to Skiu village or Leh to Chilling by drive and trek till Skiu
Option 01 – First day we drive from Leh city to Skiu village 2.5 – 3 hours / 80 kms
Option 02 – Drive from Leh to Chilling and then trek till Skiu village approximately 2-3 hours
PS. NOTE : – Sometimes Tourist vehicles are not allowed till or upto Skiu village because it comes under the Hemis National Park.
Day 02: Skiu to Markha 3500 metres (7-8 hours)
Following the Markha River, hiking through the lovely valley on a fairly level path. The trail crosses the river at various points, and passes through winter settlements that has Lhatos (religious shrines for local deities) and Mani walls (Buddhist prayers inscribed on stones). During peak season, a number of tented teahouses will be open, providing hearty refreshment and a chance to interact with the locals. After crossing the river for the last time, we will arrive at Markha, the largest village in the valley, consisting of around 20 houses, an old monastery and a ruined fort
Day 03: Trek Markha to Thachungtse 4200 metres (5-6 hours)
The Markha valley trail continues past old stone-mills, a ruined castle and the auspicious monastery of Techa, which is proudly perched on a towering cliff that looms above Markha, the path then intersects the river several times before cutting through the last hamlet in the valley. After leaving the village of Umlung, we will be sighting our first view of Kang Yatse (6400m), which will be in sight until we cross Kongmaru La. After lunch break in the village of Hangkar (the last village in the valley), we will moving onward to the lovely green pasture of Thachungtse, where we will camp
Day 04: Trek Thachungtse to Nimaling 4700 meters (3-4 hours)
The trail will lead us up to the beautiful plateau of Nimaling, where the people of the Markha Valley bring their herds to graze during the summer months. At 4700m, Nimaling is the highest camp on the trek, giving us spectacular views of Kang Yatse to the right, the Zangskar Range and the Markha Valley below .
Day 05: Nimaling to Chokdo (3905 m) via Kongmaru la 5260 metres (6 hours)
After breakfast, we will cross Kongmaru La, the highest pass on the trek. One can have a wonderful view of the surrounding mountains and valleys. The 2-hour descend is quite steep, but will gradually starts levelling as we approach Shang Gorge, with its strange and unique rock formations More river crossings bar our way before we arrive at the sour-spring of Chuskyurmo (used in traditional medicine by the Amchi/traditional doctors). After a lunch at Chuskyurmo, we will pass through a stream and reach at chokdo. End of Markha Valley Trek. Drive Back to Leh.
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Note: The above itinerary is a sample, intended to give you a general idea of the likely trip schedule. Numerous factors such as weather,road conditions, physical ability of the participants etc. may dictate itinerary changes either before departure or while on the trail. We reserve the right to change this schedule in the interest of the trip participant’s safety, comfort and general well being.
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