8 Days 7 Nights
Bali Pass a not so popular trek. Surprisingly, it goes along the famous places of the Himalayas. The first one being Yamunotri, the Dhaam of the Chaar Dhaam yatra. Followed by it is Har ki Doon valley then Ruinsara lake and Osla village. Known for direct spectacles of Swargrohini and Bandarpoonch peaks, this trek is literally a stairway to heaven. Not many know that this pass connects Har ki Doon and Ruinsara valley. As high as 16,207 ft this pass is a difficult trek offering the raw adventures. Not only that summit itself is small that can fit only 20-30 people. The pass offers a 360-degree view of Swargarohini, Banderpooch and Garhwal peaks.
Through this trek, one gets to relish the adventurous part of the religious Yamunotri valley. The path goes through villages that emits extravaganze of old village life. The genuiune beauty of Osla and Ghangad villages gives an insight into ancient yet modern Himalayan lifestyle. Then comes Debshu Bugyal. Just like any alpine meadows, this enhances the beauty of the Bali pass trek. It also completes the trek in all terms. Ruinsara Tal is the cherry on the cake of this trek. It is a magnifying source of beauty that reflects everything around it with a filter of magnificence. The climax is the summit climb to Bali pass which is always snow-packed making no closer to a cake-walk. If ascend is not enough, the descend will blow your mind and satisfy your every crazy nerve.
The first stop before Bali pass trek begins is the base village Sankri. It is a small hamlet of Uttarkashi that lies in Govind Wildlife Sanctuary. The drive from Dehradun to Sankri will take you through scenic places like. Kempty waterfalls, Nainbagh, Mussoorie etc. It is surrounded by peaks of Swargrohini and other Greater Himalayan peaks. By the time you reach Sankri the evening skies rise up forming amazing sceneries. A wonderful kickstart for the upcoming trek. Stay in hotels or homestay here.
Have your breakfast and get started for the early morning drive to Taluka. It is where our actual trekking starts. The driveway of 12 km goes by crossing major streams, bamboo and deodar trees. It like turning over numerous mountain bends. There is camping near Forest Rest house, in many cases, trekkers camp here also.
Start walking from Taluka on a stone-way that descend to down to river bed. Here onwards the path is along with the Supin river. After crossing 2-3 bridges both wooden and cement the path becomes ascending gradually. After about an hour open grounds will be seen on the left. You can find many locals busy in their work around here. They greet with happy faces. Another 2 hours walk and you will find beautiful unseen wooden architectures. That is Ghangad village. Another 20 minutes walk to reach the dhaba and water run mill.
We continue from here for another hour to reach another camping ground that has a building construction in process. You will spot a wooden bridge that goes to Osla village. If you have heard, Osla is a popular tourist place these days due to its unique wooden houses. Now keep walking under forest cover besides Supin river for 60 minutes to reach Seema. Keep eyes wide open in the forests, you can spot Himalayan Monal. Seema is only a camping place, where you can find many trekkers. Stay in tents and relax for the night.
Start fresh to reach our first big spot Debshu Bugyal. Begin by walking along the Supin river, again on the left. The trail ascends today and gets steep as you get close to Debshu Bugyal. Once you arrive in Ruinsara Valley there will be boulders on the route. As you keep climbing look behind to get views of the talked about Oslo village.
Another 30 minutes of flat walk and Debshu Bugyal begins. The Bugyal is huge pastureland of 2km length, you can rest here for a while. Kala Nag and Black Peak can be seen from the meadows.
The path from here suddenly drops until you reach the river bed. The path is filled with stones and is slippery. Again you will cross a bridge here. Observe the wonderful sights around you. To your dismay, the trail has a steep climb from here. The next campsite Rainbasera has only one small hut. Watch the evening sky beside the gushing river. Many trekkers spend the serene moment next to the river bed boulders. Stay in tents.
This is an exciting day because the most awaited Ruinsara Lake will be our next camping ground. The trail will be like somewhat day before's. Keep walking for 3-4 hours until you reach the reflecting water body. You will see glaciers at a distance, cross streams and all kinds of adventures to reach the lake.
The camping place today will be like a dream come true in many terms. It is placed between Supin river and Ruinsara lake, surrounded by meadows with huge snow-capped mountains at the distance. The stunning peaks of Bandarpoonch range like Bandarpoonch, Kala Nag and Dhumdhar Khai and White peak dominate the skies. You can also find Yamontri temple here. Just walk around and explore the area.
Rejoice a lot today as it will be a short day of only 4 km walk. The descends down towards Supin river. The trail goes through forests and river crossing. Before arriving at the next meadows the path gets steep again. From the meadows you can see the higher peaks. This path is like a trailer of what you witnessed in the past few days.
Surprisingly, the vegetation henceforth gets sparse ahead. In a kilometre, you will reach Odari. You can find a rock cave near the camping place. Therefore the name, Odari, which means cave. It is believed that Bali (brother of Lord Krishna) halted in this cave for a night. Swargrohini 1 & 2 can also be seen clearly from here. After lunch, Trek Leader will take some training sessions that will be useful as you move higher.
Even though this day seems shorter, it is not easy. There will steep climb on 60 degrees inclined path. It is like a ridge walk with loose rocks and scree. The trail is also laden with stones making it more difficult. Make sure you take enough rest and drink water. The height gain is significant, therefore, take proper precautions to avoid AMS.
The temperatures at night tend to go below sub-zero degrees. It is recommended to be prepared for the cold. After the strainful, rest in tents.
You can consider this as the summit day. Today you will be crossing the Bali Pass to reach Lower Dhamni. Eat full for sufficient energy for the long day. The trail to Bali pass is steep and has lots of snow. There follow the path broken your guides only. There is no need for roping up but wear microspikes if required.
After a steep climb of 2-3 hours, you will reach the top of the pass. The pass is only 10 feet wide and 30 feet wide. The pass is the high point you will feel like standing on a mountain top. Relish the 360-degree view of Swargarohini, Banderpooch and Garhwal peaks. Enjoy the views of Yamnotri valley on the right. Make the most of the sights and the moment. Hold your breath for the descend, because the actual thrill will begin now.
The climbing down is almost at 90 degrees with a narrow path. Use proper techniques and follow your guide carefully. Even after the leg section, until upper Dhamni the path is extremely tricky so be careful. It may also be strainful due to snow. After this challenging part, rest at Upper Dhamni. The path from leg to Dhamni is confusing, like a maze therefore, make sure to be in a team and follow your guide.
After taking rest, we will resume our trek to Lower Dhamni. The path is a confusing one and therefore it is advised to stay with your trek leader and team. The trail from here will be flat and visible. The path is through the forest and 2-3 km long. Rest in your tents. This will last stay in tents.
The last day of the trek has finally arrived. This will be easiest day filled a lot of descends and mild ascend. The trail is a well-paved cement pathway. There is a slight ascend up to Yamunotri which may take another 1-2 hours. Leave early from the campsite to reach Dehradun.