Snow Leopard Trek in Ladakh

Extending to an area of 600sq.kms over the Markha and Rumbak valley, the Hemis National Part is located in east of Ladakh with elevation of about 3,000m. Brought into being in 1981, the protected region is intended for preservation and sustenance of exotic flora and fauna. The land surrounding the region is rocky with a coating of thin soil which sustains low vegetation. Along shores of the water bodies is a heavyset of sand. The region experiences sub-arctic to arctic form of climate with low rainfall during the summer months and high snowfall in the winters. The temperature of the area dips below the freezing point. The summers are generally scant and meek. The cold desert is home to many uncommon and in danger of extinction species including: Marmot, Snow Leopart, Blue Sheep, Ibex, Tibetan Hare, Tibetan Antelope and Shapo. The avian families that visit and reside in the region include Golden Oriole, Horned Lark, Snow Partridge, Red Billed Chuff and Snow Cock.

Intensity: Moderate

Snow Leopard Trek Itinerary:

  • Day 1: Delhi to Leh :  Following a slumber-awakening flight to the Himalayas, you reach Leh, the capital of Ladakh perched at 11,500feet. Your arrival is eagerly awaited by our Zanskar Himalayan Exploration family. The blazing landscapes of the mountains topped with a series of snow-crested peaks feasts your senses to bliss. Following your settling in at the hotel, we spend the afternoon resting. Post-lunch, we are joined by the local work group and the members of Snow Leopard Conservancy who initiate us into the lives of Snow Leopard and teach us their ways. After the orientation, we can visit the Leh bazaar. First few days of the trip are reserved for acclimatization to the climate. The dinner is a traditional delectation, shared with the Conservancy group. We spend night at the hotel.
  • Day 2: Leh Market Leisurely Visit : The second day of your trip is set aside to lookup and explore tiny street of the market thrusted with precious antiques and traditional materials. The main aim remains to adapt our bodies to the climate. We spend the night at hotel.
  • Day 3: Walking Trail of Leh : A guide accompanies us on a walk through the town of Leh. We look into the Leh Palace, an ancient mansion and the Victory Peak. After our walk through the gift shop, we visit the LEDeG which is a preservation-house working on conservation of the environment and cultural heritage of Ladakh. We stay at the hotel for the night.
  • Day 4: Let to Zingchen (Trek to the Camp) : Duration: About 5 to 6 hours , Elevation: 12,400 :  A breakfast that ravishes the taste buds is succeeded by ride to Phey Bridge where we begin to walk aside the Indus River to the Zingchen pass. As we resume our trail through the pass, the striking gateway of the Hemis National Park awaits us. Our route is freckled with the vistas of the mountains. We keep an eye out for the territorial markings of the Snow Leopard on the cliffs and rocks. We rest and camp at the Wildlife Work Camp.
  • Day 5 to Day 12: Wildlife Watch : Our days are spent in the fervent sighting of the Snow Leopard and their prey. Hemis National Park is appraised for being home to fauna and flora of various kinds including argali (a great-horned sheep), Tibetan Wolf and blue sheep. Snow Leopard come down to the lower altitudes as the winter begins. This strengthens our chances of spotting them and if our deal with destiny is sealed stiff, we could get to glimpse at the snow leopard resting on the rocks or on the ridgelines. We come back to the camp for warm helpings and cups of hot tea. The discussions of the embellishing of the mountains surround our snacks. We spend the nights at camp.
  • Day 13: Wildlife Watch, Visit to Villages and Home-Stay, Elevation: 13,500 : Based on recent reports, we visit regions in the vicinity where Snow Leopards have been spotted. Home-stay at Rumbak brings us the cordiality and belongingness of home. The members of the home-stay group are dedicated beings trained in hospitality and actively involved in the preservation of the Snow Leopard. We acquaint ourselves with the ways of their lives and dip into their winter hobbies like weaving, telling stories and spinning. The day is spent in tracking of the Snow Leopard and other animals. We stay the night at the home-stay or camp.
  • Day 14: Trek to Zingchen and Return to Leh : Following an endearing farewell to the Hemis National Park marked by our last glimpses at the tracking routes and hosts, Zingchen is reached which awaits us with taxi. Riding to Leh, we rejuvenate our memories and reach the hotel with a healthy quota of sleep on our backs. We spend the night at the hotel.
  • Day 15: Leh to Delhi :An early morning breakfast is followed by our bye-bye’s and we look to your revisit soon. You reach the airport well on time and depart for Delhi.

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