Join us for the trek to this mysterious lake. Roopkund is a high altitude glacial lake in Uttarakhand state of India. It lies in the lap of Trishul massif and famous due to hundreds of human skeletons found at the edge of the lake. The location is uninhabited and is located in Himalaya at an altitude of about 5,029 metres (16,499 feet). The lake is surrounded by rock-strewn glaciers and snow clad mountains, making it a good trekking destination.
A shallow lake, having a depth of about 2 metres, Roopkund has attracted attention by having human skeletal remains easily visible at its bottom when snow melts. There are many theories and opinions, from purely spiritual to purely scientific ones, which explain the existence of these skeletons, which date back to 9th century CE. Because of these skeletons, the lake is also sometimes called as Skeleton lake in recent times.
Each online purchase entitles one person for this activity. Book quantity more than 1 for the number of people in your group.
We strongly encourage you to carry your own back pack. But if you opt to offload your back pack to a porter please select the option porter required while booking for the trek. The bag offloaded must be just one bag and total weight of the bag must not exceed 15 Kgs
Treks are conducted when there are enough people interested in it (more than 10 people). Please register early at the below link with your contact information so that we can co-ordinate.
Price listed (per person) is for a group of 10 people. As the number of people in the batch increases / decreases the price will vary. Once you have registered for the trek, and we have minimum set of people, we will let you know so that you can pay 25% of the cost upfront. The final payment needs to be done one week before the trek date. We will let you know the remaining amount that needs to be paid (it will vary based on team size).
Permit Cost for Foreign Nationals @Rs.2000 per person extra.
Day 1: Pick up from Kathgodam Railway station at 7.00 am. Drive to Lohajung base camp. Apprx arrival time at Lohajung 6-7 pm.
Day 2: Trek starts. Lohajung to Didina. Homestay at Didina.
Day 3: Didina to Bedni Bugyal (via Ali Bugyal).
Day 4: Bedni Bugyal to Bhagwabhasa.
Day 5: Bhagwabhasa to Roopkund and back to Bedni Bugyal.
Day 6: Bedni Bugyal to Wan via Ghairoli Patal. From Wan drive back to Lohajung.
Day 7: Depart for Kathgodam. Approximate arrival time at Kathgodam: 6-7 pm.
Trek Date – May/June/Mid July/September/October/Mid November 2016. (For details about the fixed dates contact Ayan Brahma [Ph: +91 9591945454])
Physical preparation is mandatory for this trek. Regular Jogging, Stretching Exercises, Cardio Exercises
Suggestion of Essential Clothing & Equipment
Rucksack 60-70 Liters, First Layer – Thermals, Second Layer – Cold protection (Fleece jackets), Third Layer – Water Proof cum Wind Cheater Jacket, For Head & Ears – Balaclava, Long Woolen socks, Trekking Shoes – Forclaz 500/600, Gaiters, Ponchos, Water Proof Gloves, Trekking Poles, Water Bags
Camera, Memory-Cards, Batteries etc (Batteries carry enough spares. You won’t get Electricity on slopes)
Slippers/Sandals (for walking around campsite)
While there are adequate food provided on trek, some do feel very less energetic compared to others. So you can carry few energy bars (dry fruit pouches are better than 5 Star/Munch).
While packing, use bags to compartmentalize things and carry few extra plastic bags for wet clothes.
Carry a personal Leak proof Tiffin Box, a Plate, Spoon and Coffee Mug.
Personal Medicine kit containing
Dolo 650 – 10 Tablets, Avomine – 1 Strip, Avil 25mg – 6 Tablets, Diamox – @ 3 Tablets/day 30 tablets, Combiflam – 5 Tablets, Disprin – 10 Tablets, Norflox TZ- 10 Tablets, Spasmoproxyvon – 6 Tablets, Crepe Bandage – 3 to 5 meters, Band Aid – 10 strips, Zintac 300 – 10 tablets, Gauze cloth – 1 small role, Leukoplast – 1 small roll, Cotton – 1 small roll, ORS – 5 packets, Betadine cream, Aqua pure Tablets – 1 bottle, Moov spray
We strive for the best safety standards. Every trekker must adhere to the instructions issued by the guide.
DOs and Don’ts
- A strict NO to your Denims – they are not suitable for treks, beside it adds weight.
- NO to Snacks, Colas, Alcohol and Personal Food – Don’t overweight yourself with them.
- NO to any Disposable Plastic Bottles, plastic wrapped/packaged items & Non Bio Degradable material.
- While at the trek enjoy the view. Do not litter and leave the place in the same condition for other trekkers and next generation coming after you to enjoy.
- Strict NO to touching or handling of any of the Sketal remains that you may come across.
We carry High Altitude Sleeping Bags with us hence please do not carry yours. We would also be carrying Alpine tents, ice-axes, and other equipment required for such treks.
- Do weigh your Gears post packing. It should not exceed the range of 8-9 kg – preferably on the lighter side. Anything heavier, you need to repeat and remove what is not essential.
- Travel light and carry what is essential. For example, toothpaste should be bought in small size (that can last you 10 days).The list given here are exactly what you need and nothing more.
Some Common advice about Clothing:
To protect you from cold, dressing in layers is the ‘Catch’. Two T-shirts worn one over the other is warmer than a T-shirt that is thick. 3 T-shirts worn one over the other is as good as a full sweater. This is just a suggestion. If you are prone to cold carry an extra sweater.
Please ensure to carry the following documents:
An identification card (like Driving License, Voters ID card, Passport etc), along with a photocopy, Passport Size Photos, a Medical Certificate and Disclaimer Certificate (Download pdf here).
All mentioned DOCUMENTS are MANDATORY, without which you won’t be allowed to trek.
1. Accommodation. (Camping) and Guest House (Day 1, and Day 6 according to Itinerary)
2. Meals while on trek (Veg.)
3. Trekking equipment
5. First Aid Medical kits and oxygen cylinder
6. Qualified & experienced trek Leader, Guide and Support staff to help trekkers
1. Transport/Food / Meal on the way to / from Lohajung
2. Any kind of personal expenses
4. Porter to carry personal luggage.
5. Anything not specifically mentioned under the head Inclusions
Not suitable for: Heart Patient, paralyzed Patient, pregnant women, Asthmatics or any other medical conditions that limits person from participating in adventure sports
Contact person – Ayan Kumar Brahma
Ph: +91 9591945454
How to reach?
Starting point of the trek is Lohajung, Chamoli, Uttarakhand
Nearest railhead is Kathgodam. You can reach Kathgodam by an overnight journey from Delhi. Ranikhet express leaves Old Delhi station at 10.40 PM to get to Kathgodam by 6.30 AM. Wanderlust’s pick up is lined up with the Ranikhet Express.
Some facts about the trek
Trail type: Circular; returns to base camp.
Altitude: Roopkund: 15,750 feet (4,800 mts). Junargali 16,000 ft (4,878 mts, highest point)
Base Camp: Village Lohajung (Chamoli District, Uttarakhand)
Best Season: May 3rd week to June end; Mid September to October end.
Temperature in May, Jun : Day: 15° to 20°C. Night: 4° to 7°C. Temp at highest camp, Bhagwabasa: Day 5°C to 10°C. Night: 3° to -2°C.
Rains: Rainy season is from the second week of July to mid September. May/June is not the rainy season but afternoon showers are very common in the mountains. These are not the monsoon rains.
Temperature in Sept and Oct : Day: 13° to 20°C. Night: 2° to 7°C. Temp at highest camp, Bhagwabasa: Day 3°C to 10°C. Night: 3° to -4°C.
Snow: High snow in May from Kalu Vinayak onwards. Decreases in June. Comfortable snow during the last half of June. September has little snow. In the first week of October, the first winter snow is likely to fall in the upper reaches. Usually melts in a few days.
Roopkund (locally known as Mystery Lake) is a high altitude glacial lake in Uttarakhand state of India. It lies in the lap of Trisul massif and famous due to hundreds of human skeletons found at the edge of the lake. The location is uninhabited and is located in Himalaya at an altitude of about 5,029 metres (16,499 feet). The lake is surrounded by rock-strewn glaciers and snow clad mountains, making it a good trekking destination.
A shallow lake, having a depth of about 2 metres, Roopkund has attracted attention by having human skeletal remains easily visible at its bottom when snow melts. There are many theories and opinions, from purely spiritual to purely scientific ones, which explain the existence of these skeletons, which date back to 9th century CE. Because of these skeletons, the lake is also sometimes called as Skeleton lake
The Indian and European scientists carried out an exploration project in 2004 and found more information about these skeletons. They found jewelry, skulls, bones and preserved body tissues, which were of great importance. The DNA test revealed that there were mainly two groups of people. One marked by the shorter stature of the skeletons while the other is significantly taller people who were closely related to Kokanastha Brahmins of Maharashtra (as suggested DNA Mutations). Some British explorers to Roopkund and many scholars attribute the bones to General Zorawar Singh of Kashmir, and his men, who are said to have lost their way and perished in the high Himalayas on their return journey after the Battle of Tibet in 1841. Later it was found that these skeletons belonged to 12th – 15th century. The exact whereabouts of these skeletons is still a mystery. Many historians linked the corpses to an unsuccessful attack by Mohammad Tughlak on the Garhwal Himalaya. Still others believed that the remains were of those of victims of an unknown epidemic. Some anthropologists also put forward a theory of ritual suicide.
There are different routes for a trek to Roopkund. Generally, trekkers and adventurers travel to Lohajung or Wan by road. From there, they climb a hillock at Wan and reach Ran ki Dhar. There is some flat area where trekkers can camp for the night. If the sky is clear, one can see Bedni Bugyal and Trisul. The next camping spot is at Bedni Bugyal, which is 12–13 km from Wan. There is a huge grazing ground for mules, horses and sheep. There are two temples and a small lake that add to the beauty of this place. One can see many Himalayan peaks from Bedni Bugyal bridge. Trekkers then go up to Bhaguwabasa, which is 10–11 km from Bedni Bugyal. The climate at Bhaguwabasa is hostile for most of the year. One gets a closer view of Trisul and other peaks higher than 5000 metres. Many waterfalls and landslides are visible on the extreme slopes of the surrounding mountains. From Bhaguwabasa, trekkers either go to Roopkund and come back or they go to Shila Samundra (Ocean of Stones) via Junargalli Col Pass, which is just above the lake, and then proceed with the trek up to Homkund.
Less than 10 days – 0% refund
Between 10 to 14 days – 50% refund
Between 14 to 24 days – 70% refund
More than 24 days – 95%
Activity subject to weather condition
Roopkund: 15,750 feet (4,800 mts). Junargali 16,000 ft (4,878 mts, highest point)
Moderate / Difficult
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