Travel and Leisure

A Complete Travel Guide to Chopta Chandrashila Trek

The rush of excitement from climbing misty routes, learning the legends behind mountain summits, journeying forever, and ultimately seeing the glorious Himalayas. For all of these reasons, trekking in Uttarakhand is one of the most memorable experiences. The  Chopta Chandrashila trek was one of those hikes that left me breathless. Both literally and metaphorically.

The mountains were named after the literal translation of the phrase “Moon Rock.” According to tradition, Chandra (the Moon God) spent some time in penance at these mountain summits, hence the name.

Chopta Chandrashila trek, located approximately 13,000 feet above sea level, provides a clear perspective of peaks such as the Nandadevi, Kedar, and Chaukhamba.

It is located in the heart of Uttarakhand. When I looked around, I noticed that I was surrounded by beautiful villages and distant towns. From that vantage point, I could see melting snow and lakes make their way through fissures and wrinkles, passing through little hamlets. The heart concept combined with this perspective caused me to imagine the flowing streams as a network of veins rejuvenating the settlements surrounding it.

What to know before trekking Chopta Chandrashila trek

I had travelled alone, therefore I had to climb with my extra luggage of trekking equipment. Attempting to ascend the mountains without the necessary equipment would be risky and exhausting.

So make sure you have your trekking poles and comfortable shoes with you.

Bringing along an experienced guide is also highly suggested at this point! Especially if you are new to trekking.

They would enlighten you on the mechanics of the trek, such as the required fitness, flat-footed tactics, consultation on medicinal intakes, and so on, before you summit the mountain.

Without the proper information, you’d already made ten stops before you’d even gotten halfway through.

Wear lightweight clothing that dries rapidly. Track pants are more comfortable for climbing the peak, and avoid wearing jeans or other bodycon clothing. Keep a raincoat on standby in case of unexpected rain.

Mountains are a little too unpredictable, therefore knowing the correct weather and its nature is crucial before you start climbing.

There aren’t many shops or kiosks near the summit, so bring plenty of water with you. It is critical that you keep yourself hydrated.

How to reach Chopta Chandrashila trek

Chandrashila is a popular hiking destination, and the number of people that visit every other day to enjoy the Himalayan grandeur is remarkable.

Sari hamlet serves as the trek’s starting point and is easily accessible from Haridwar. This camp has access to practically every method of transportation.

The nearest rail station is at Haridwar, from where a cab or bus can be taken to Sari hamlet. It is approximately a 7-hour travel from Haridwar to Chopta, which is around 56 kilometres away.

In terms of air travel, the nearest airport is Jolly Grant Airport in Dehradun, which is 180 kilometres from Chopta.

The route map would take you from Haridwar to the base camp Sari and then to the Deoria Tal. Chopta is 60 kilometres away, from where the trip would take a circle via Tungnath-Chandrashila and back to Chopta.

The Kund camp is also used as a starting point from Sari village, but it is less common.

When to visit

This is yet another element of Chandrashila that distinguishes it as one of the top trekking destinations.

It is a year-round journey that is open in all seasons. Autumn and winter excursions are the most popular.

Because of the increased snowfall, winter treks are more difficult to complete. Climbing through the slushy snow, while tiresome, is fascinating and adventurous.

During the monsoon, not only does the trail change from a moderate to a difficult ascent, but there are also concerns associated with the way to Chandrashila.

If you’re walking through Chopta, you should take extra measures because the area is prone to landslides and other disasters.

This isn’t a problem for the average adventurer who is willing to accept the risk of trekking through the rain. Understandably so, as the vista of the mountain ranges with rain dropping like silver threads is well worth the effort required to reach the summit.

Aside from the climate problems, the walk usually lasts roughly 4-5 days.

The Four-day exploration

The uneven terrain covered in fir forests that leads to the summit is a four-day enchantment.

Day 1 :Haridwar to Sari (Altitude – 6,600 feet)

The accommodation changed on occasion, and a proper stay per se was at Haridwar, from whence I had to depart for Sari early in the morning. The base camp is located in the Uttarakhand district of Rudraprayag, approximately a 7-hour drive from Haridwar with few pauses and halts.

There are a variety of campsites, homestays, and cottages available to accommodate hikers.

I arrived at 6 p.m. and had to take a break for the day before beginning the Deoria Tal trip the next day.

Sari is an excellent overnight camping location. With the bonfire and musical evenings with other campers, there would be no dull moments around here.

Day 2 : Deoria Tal Trek (Altitude: 7850 feet)

This was one of the most enjoyable aspects of the journey.

Despite being only 2 kilometres from Sari, the trail is rather uneven, and with an elevation of around 1300 feet, it took me more than 40 minutes to complete.

This was primarily due to my decision to pause at the maple forests and the Hawa Ghar amidst them. Locals have also converted portions of the land for farming purposes. They are a wonderful group of people who provided the trekkers steaming boiling tea.

Walking through the lush expanse of vegetation and leaving towards the emerald lakes seemed like finding a rare gem after a long search. Camping amenities are available here with advance notification. Aside from that, they offer camping spots for individuals who want to bring their own tents.

An overnight stay in the campgrounds, overlooking the gorgeous lake’s night light reflections, is a rite for people who walk to Chopta Chandrashila trek.

Day 3 : Off to Chopta (Altitude: 8800 feet)

After leaving the Deoria Tal camp, the next stop was Chopta. The trip becomes moderately difficult at this point. The elevation is higher, and I would have battled ten times more if I hadn’t had suitable clothing.

The journey can be a little perplexing because it takes us through a large forest and there aren’t many individuals we could see along the way.

If you don’t know where you’re going, it’s like a Hansel and Gretel adventure.

Depending on how frequently you stop at rest breaks, the journey to Chopta would take between 8 and 10 hours.

There are numerous water stops along the way, so make sure to fill up your bottles before departing. Among the pauses are those before the Akash Kamini waterfalls and Rohini Bugyal.

If you’re accompanied by a hiking guide, they’ll direct you to and stop at these spots for refreshment.

There is also a Forest guest lodge along the way where you may stop and unwind before continuing your trip.

The ridges are excellent places to see the sunset. I was almost completely exhausted by the time the sun began to set. The scenery, combined with the Himalayan birds chirping, was a sight for sore eyes.

Trekking trails begin in Sari and travel through the Garhwali people’s poor settlements. There were modest cottages built entirely from scratch not far from Chopta. These were said to be the mountain shepherd’s quarters.

When I arrived in Chopta later in the evening, I set my tent and prepared for the night.

Day 4 :Circuit trek (12100 feet)

On Day 4, I was getting ready to depart the snow-covered mountains of Chopta. The walk from Chopta to Tunganath-Chandrashila and back to Chopta took the form of a circuit.

This is the main journey, and the ascent is more difficult. It takes more than 5 hours to reach the peak, and on the route, you’ll pass the infamous Tungnath temple.

The temple is considered to be the highest Shiva temple in the world, standing at an elevation of 12000 feet. This temple exudes an unmistakable energy. Bells ring against the wind at the gate, colourful buntings flutter, and a welcoming Nandi statue stands before the temple. Holding the pause button on the walk here will not only allow you to rest, but it will also provide you with an excellent meditation experience.

The brick construction is only about 2 kilometres from the Chandrashila mountain. The trek to the upper base from the temple takes 45 minutes. I wish I could have taken a picture of the misty trail, but I was too enthralled to explain how I felt about being there at the time. This was accompanied by a cold breeze smacking my face and complete silence except for the noises of the boot breaking the snow with each stride.

When you reach the pinnacle, you are faced with the problem of not wanting to return. The 360-degree vista of the entire valley beneath the high mountain passes is something you’d want to see every day.

Also Have a Look on : Kedarkantha Trek

This is one of the more difficult and fascinating treks available, and it is unquestionably a rite of passage for the adventurer in you!

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