Bandarpunch typically means “monkey’s tail” in Hindi and is a beautiful mountain region in the Western Garhwal region of Uttarakhand. This belt of mountains consists of three groups of mountains namely Bandarpunch I, Bandarpunch II, and Kalanag at a height of 19,685 ft. Bandarpunch II is also known as the “white peak”. These groups of mountains are called massif. This massif can be viewed from various points in Garhwal. Maj Gen Harrold Williams was the first person to successfully complete this expedition somewhere around 1950 with a group that also consisted of Tenzin Norgay. The Bandar punch trek route map passes through the Hanuman Ganga valley. Tenzin Norgay calls Bandarpunch “Doon school mountain” in his own biography. We will be approaching this massif by the southeast route that was first taken up by Nehru Institute of Mountaineering (NIM) when they took their students to the advanced course of mountaineering during spring. Basecamp for this trek will be starting from Sukhi that is en route to Gangotri.
We will be arriving early morning to Delhi and will be visiting the IMF office (those who live in Delhi can meet us directly at the office). At the office, we will be fulfilling all the paperwork and then meet the Liaison officer. After all the formalities have been fulfilled we will be boarding the Nanda Devi Express leaving Delhi at around 11:55-12:00 am so that we will reach Dehradun at around 5:00-6:00 a.m in the morning.
On reaching Dehradun we will board our vehicles and drive to Uttarkashi. It will be an 8-9 hour-long drive, we will be having our breakfast on our way to Uttarkashi. On reaching Uttarkashi we will be checking in into our guest houses. After having our dinner we will be staying overnight in Uttarkashi in a hotel.
On our 3rd day, we will be starting early and will be driving to Sukhi. The drive is short and will take somewhere around 2.5 hours to 3 hours at max to reach. Sukhi will be the starting of the trek. Sukhi is basically a tiny village at a height of 8,202 ft, it has very few houses meaning very few populations and a large number of apple orchards. September to October is generally the harvest time of apples here and therefore you may see many villagers giving their apples for no cost!! Isn’t this amazing? you might not find this in cities or this may be a very rare case where you might actually find something as generous as the people of this village. From Sukhi we will be climbing very steep to the Khagi pass which is at an altitude of 11,220 ft. After reaching the Khagi pass we will begin our descent downwards to our camp. This place is sure to offer some great sight of the route towards the west and some spectacular view of Gangotri 1,2 & 3 and Jaonli and Srikanth peaks from the south. We will be retiring for the night in our forest camps only to gain more energy and start the day with the same energy.
On our fourth day, we will be having a long hike to the camp. You will first be descending to the meeting point of Son Gad & Chaiyaan Gad rivers and walk beside Chaiyaan gad rivers until we reach our destination-the Base camp. The trek will first begin by going into some dense forests and offering some mesmerizing views of the luscious green meadows and will finally go over the tree line to reach our base camp which is at the end of the Chaiyaan glacier. On our way, we might encounter some shepherds grazing. This is the beauty of trekking in Garhwal especially in Bandarpunch as it offers so many vivid experiences for you to witness and for you to experience on your own. We will be staying overnight at the base campsite.
The fifth day will be our day for acclimatization and to check our climbing tools. After breakfast, we will be going hiking to a point on the trail and will be returning back until late afternoon. We will be staying overnight in our base camps.
We will be climbing to Camp I and will take all our essential climbing gear with us. On our journey back we will leave our gear over there. This will serve as a good acclimatizing activity.
We will be resting for a day at the Base Camp to acclimatize and to rest for a little while longer before beginning with the main adventure.
On our eight-day, we will be climbing back to Camp I which is at an altitude of 14,599 ft. Will stay overnight at Camp I.
We will acclimatize and rest at Camp I on our ninth day before continuing with our journey.
The next morning we will be trekking up to a place at a height of 16,404 ft. and will return back to Camp I at night. Overnight stay at Camp I.
On our eleventh day we will be trekking to our Summit Camp which is at a height of 16,994 ft.
We will not trek on our twelfth day instead we will rest at our Summit Camp and will check our luggage.
The celebration day is today! We will be climbing to our main Summit, that is, the main Bandarpunch peak which is at a height of 20,721 ft and descend down to our camp.
A contingency day to provide you people with the best summit experience.
Finally, on the fifteenth day, we will begin our descent down to base camp from summit camp.
We will have a hearty breakfast. After breakfast, we will continue our descent from Base Camp to Forest Camp.
On our seventeenth day, we will be hiking back to Sukhi from Forest Camp. On reaching Sukhi we will be driving to Uttarkashi which will be 7 hours long.
On our way back to Delhi we will drive from Uttarkashi to Dehradun. On reaching Dehradun we will be taking our overnight train to Delhi from Dehradun.
We will be reporting again at the IMF office before saying our final goodbyes and heading towards our home.