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Stok Kangri General Info

General Information

This is a short but demanding trek through the Ladakh Mountains.  We follow a rarely walked route through wild high-altitude scenery which culminates in an ascent of Stok Kangri (6,123m) one the easiest 6,000m peaks in the world.

Ladakh often called ‘the land of high passes’ because of its arid moonscape scenery and high Himalayan peaks. It is one of the last bastions of Tibetan culture and religion.

This expedition is based out of the Ladakhi capitol Leh in the North of India. Local Time GMT + 5 hrs 30 mins.

How to get there

Most people fly into Delhi and catch an internal flight to Leh early the following morning. Our services start in Delhi, where you will be met at the airport and taken to a hotel nearby. Our representative will also take you to the airport the following morning to make sure you don’t miss your flight!

The following airlines operate flights between Delhi and Leh:

Indian Airlines www.indian-airlines.nic.in  3 flight each week between Leh and Delhi 
Jet Airways www.jetairways.com 6 flights each week between Leh and Delhi
Kingfisher Airlines www.flykingfisher.com daily flight Between Leh and Delhi

Money and tipping

Banks and ATMs are available in Leh, but there are sometimes long queues and they often run out of money. It’s a good idea to take money with you, rather then rely on an ATM.

It is illegal to import or export Indian Rupees. The easiest way to get your hands on local currency is to change £UK or US$ at Delhi airport. Ask for low denomination notes of 100 Rupees or less as 500 Rupee notes can sometimes be difficult to use out of Delhi.

You can change money back from Rupees into Pounds or Dollars at Delhi airport, but you must produce an exchange receipt showing that you changed money in India.

You will need approximately £200 for meals, entry fees and tipping for the whole trip. Tipping is a tradition in India and you should allow approximately £60 (per trekker) for providing a tip to the guide, assistant, cook and crew.

Visas, passports and Permits

Foreign nationals need a permit to climb any peak in India. These are issued by the Indian Mountaineering Federation. We will apply for the permit, the cost is included in the price of the trip.

Since Ladakh is on India's sensitive north western border, the movement of foreign tourists is restricted. Foreign tourists may not travel beyond one mile north of the Zoji-la-Dras-Bodhkarbu- Khalatse road, except to visit the monasteries of Tia-Tingmosgang, Rizong, Likir and Phyang. Shey, Thikse, Chemrey and Tak-thok. Monasteries lying north of the Leh-Upshi road can also be visited. The Leh-Manali road is also only open upto one mile east of its general alignment. Foreign tourists can visit some newly opened areas in north eastern and northern regions of Ladakh, but only with permission of the Deputy Commissioner Leh.

British passport holders require a visa for India. You must get your Indian visa before departure, it's a simple process.

The India High Commission out-sources visa applications to VF Global. You can submit the application in one of two ways, either by making an appointment and attending a VF service branch in person or by completing the online application and submitting your passport by post. Please visit http://in.vfsglobal.co.uk/ or call 090 5757 0045 for more information.

If submitting in person, it will take 2-3 working days for the application to be processed. By post it will take a minimum of 10 working days.

For the visa application you will need: the printed application form, the appointment letter, two 2 inch x 2 inch photographs and your passport.

The current cost for an Indian visa is about £90. There is also a VFS service charge of £10

Vaccinations and Health

There are no mandatory vaccination requirements for this trip.

Recommended vaccinations for this trip are: Polio, Tetanus, Diphtheria, Typhoid, Hepatitis A.

The risk of malaria on this trip is minimal, but you may wish to consult your GP or travel health clinic for further advice.

Dengue fever is a known risk in parts of India. It is a tropical viral disease spread by daytime biting mosquitoes. There is currently no vaccine or prophylaxis available for Dengue, and therefore the best form of prevention is to avoid being bitten. Take the usual precautions to avoid mosquito bites.

Electricity

230/240 volts AC, 50 Hz. There are recharging facilities at all the hotels, the electricity supply is not 100% reliable but it is usually only off for short periods of time.

Bring a universal plug adaptor.

Baggage and Baggage Allowance

At time of writing the standard weight limit for hold baggage on most international carriers for is 25kg. We recommend packing only one piece of checked baggage.

Internal flights in India are subject to a weight limit of 20kg.

Trekking Season in Himalayas and climatic conditions

Ladakh is one of the driest regions in northern India, the capital Leh experiences only 110 mm of rainfall a year. Because of its location to the north east of the main Himalayan range, it is sheltered from the Indian monsoon.

The best trekking months are July, August and September. During these months, the weather is very stable and most of the snow has melted from the high passes.

In the months of July and August the daytime temperatures at lower elevations in the Ladakh region are typically around the 25C mark. The heat and the intense UV light requires special caution. It’s usually cooler during September.

There are also occasional storms, which can result in snow falling at higher elevations.

Needless to say, night time temperatures at higher elevations fall well below freezing.

weather conditions in Leh

Equipment transportation

We use donkeys to carry group camping equipment and your personal stuff during the trek. Bring a duffel bag to pack your personal equipment so that it to be carried by the mules. There are no ‘load carries’ and you won’t be expected to carry a large pack.

Accommodation

We use double occupancy tents on the trail (bring your own sleeping bag and camping mat). There are no mountain huts in this remote part of the world. We provide all camping equipment and a mess tent for meals, playing cards and general merriment.

When 'off the hill' you will stay in a mid-range hotel in Delhi and Leh.