Chopta Chandrashila Trek - The perfect introduction to the himalayas

Published 29 Jan 2020 Author Shakinah Hussain

Heavenly views come to those who endure the rigors of the mountain. This is pretty much the rule of law when it comes to the world of trekking.Thankfully, there is one exception to this rule. The Chopta Chandrashila trek.

( Sometimes this is all you will want to do, sit on a rock and swoon over the majestic peaks )

It is an adventure that promises everything that one looks out for, from a Himalayan Trek. You get jaw dropping views of sky-touching peaks. There are walks through the forest amidst Rhododendrons bursting in their pinks and reds. You will witness a sky blanketed by stars in the night. There are meadows that resemble your windows wallpaper. And more than anything, you will summit at sunrise, the golden hour when the sky changes multiple shades in matter of minutes.

( The forest floor littered with Rhododendrons blooming in all their colours )

All of this with the least amount of effort. Sure, it’s no a walk in the park, but even someone of an average fitness can easily make it. No wonder, for many, this trek marks their Himalayan debut.

( On a trek, it’s important to find moments like these, where you just pause and absorb nature’s beauty. )

The maximum altitude that you will ever reach is 13,000 odd feet at the summit, but you will also be descending down the same day. So acclimatization is not much of a worry.

The first campsite on the trek is Deorital Lake, a mere one hour trek from the base Sari. The lake is surrounded by forests with the glistening waters reflecting the mighty Chaukhamba peak. A much coveted shot for the shutterbugs out there. Lush green meadows will be your bed during the day. Descending to Sari the next day takes only 45 minutes.

( When the glistening waters of Deorital mirror the splendor of the Himalayas )

The trail which again starts at Chopta is well laid out till Tungnath, the highest Shiva temple in the world. It’s not flat, but a steady uphill climb.Along the way, Chaukhamba, Neelkanth and Kedarnath peaks jump into view.

The summit day starts early, and when you step out of the tent, you will witness a sea of clouds gliding a hundred feet below you. The trek starts at 4.00 a.m., the aim to reach before sunrise.

The trail is hardly 1.5 kms in length, but at the start, you will be walking in the dark, maintaining a slow and steady pace to reach the top. The summit has a small temple and a series of cairns. Once at the top, the wait begins, for nature’s canvas to unfurl in front of you.

As the sun rises from behind Nandadevi Peak, the sky slowly turns into a riot of colours. The Himalayan peaks are the first ones to receive the warmth of the sun, their peaks illuminated like it’s a blessing from above. The summit also provides a panoramic view of some of the highest peaks in the world, right from Nandadevi and Trishul to Bandarpoonch and Chaukhamba.

( The fruit of your labor – Awe inspiring summit views from Chandrashila Peak )

Standing on the Chandrashila summit witnessing these Himalayan giants is a privilege. And there is no other trek in India which can grant such views with as little effort as this one. Goes without saying, that makes it the perfect trek for a beginner who wants to venture out into the Himalayas.

Author: Shakinah Hussain

A writer, an animal lover, a photographer and a traveller. I strongly believe that every animal deserves a home.

Recognition & Association

Recognised by Ministry of Tourism, Government of India as an Approved Adventure Tour Operator