Kedarkantha trek: a scenic haven for a blissful staycation adventure

Kedarkantha trek: a scenic haven for a blissful staycation adventure

Kedarkantha trek: a scenic haven for a blissful staycation adventure

The Kedarkantha trek is one of the most exciting summit treks, which is located near Govind Pashu Vihar Park in Uttarakhand. This is a perfect trek for beginners, located at an elevation of 3810m this trek offers panoramic views of some of the famous Himalayan peaks like Swargarohini, Bandarpoonch, black peak, Ranglana in the Yamunotri and Gangotri ranges. 

You will have to start the trek in the coldest hours before sunrise to reach the top of the summit on time. This is a 20 km long trek which takes almost 5 days to cover. The starting point of this trek is Sankri Village which is a common starting point for many treks in Uttarakhand. On your way, you will pass through a mass of maple and oak trees over several wooden bridges and streams until you reach the base camp which is Juda-ka-Tal, this will be your first campsite.   

The next day you will find steeper slopes as you move forward to the Kedarkantha base camp which is around 4 km away. The trail moves up through the thick oak forests which branch open to various clearings along the way.

There you will be able to witness the rich vegetation and wildlife such as rhododendron trees, chir pine, black eagle, and golden eagle. From the Kedarkantha base camp, you can have a 180-degree view of some of the beautiful snow-capped Himalayan peaks like Bandarpoonch, black peak, Swargarohini, and Ranglana. You can also see snow-covered Kedarkantha Peak which looks brighter than the moon on most nights.

The most difficult part of the Kedarkantha trek is upward climbing, Gusty winds, and bitter-cold temperatures during the winter season. Here we have planned a brief itinerary for your Kedarkantha trek.

Detailed itinerary for Kedarkantha trek  

Day 1: Arrival in Sankri village (1940m) 

Your journey will start from the capital city of Dehradun. Most of the common treks start from Sankri. It is 197 km and 1950m drive away from Dehradun which will take around 9-10 hours to reach. 

The road trip starts off beautifully with a drive-through breathtaking hills of Mussoorie and the large mountain cliffs that hide the majestic Kempty Falls. While driving through long winding roads you will witness the panoramic beauty around you. In many parts, roads run parallel to swift mountain streams. 

The landscapes change from deep gorges to an enchanted shade of blue pine forests after you cross Mussoorie and drive through the winding Yamuna River for some time.  

However, the last 22 km to Sankri steals the scene as you pass through the Govind National Park. this place offers a variety of exotic flora and fauna. The roads can be bumpy and rugged in some parts but the sights of dense cone-bearing evergreen forests, Tons River Valley, and separate apple orchards will compensate for this. 

You will arrive in Sankri around 5 pm. This is a green village with stunning views of Mt. Swargarohini, the views are beautiful, especially at the time of sunset. You will begin to witness snow in Sankri itself during the winter season which starts in December and last till the end of february.  

Today you will stay in the guest house in Sankri. You can have some rest there after checking in before heading out to explore surrounding areas.

Day 2: sankri to juda-ka- tal 

Wake up early in the morning, after having breakfast get ready for the trek which will start at 9 AM. You will have to carry a packed lunch box for use throughout the day.

During the peak winter season, your trek leader will give you spikes and gaiters before you start the trek these things will help climb up the challenging trails easily. They will also train you on how to use them on the snow trail. 

You will take a path that passes through another village named Saud which will take you to the trails of the Kedarkantha trek. En route, you will be crossing multiple bridges. There you will see a thick carpeting of maple leaves all over the floor of forest.

This same path looks like a winter wonderland during the winter season with soft snow covering the floor, branches of trees, and the pleasantly warm sun shining from above.

Another hour or so, you will find a huge fallen trunk lying in a glade just before the forest.

You can then take some rest and eat your packed lunch while sipping from a cup of hot tea. 

After trekking you will reach the campsite, Juda-Ka-Tal which is a small lake situated on the Kedarkantha trek. There you will stay for the day.

Day 3: Juda-Ka-Tal to kedarkantha base camp

Today you will have to trek through the toughest slopes as compared to yesterday as you will be passing through primeval Oak forest. The journey to Kedarkantha base camp will start at 9 AM After having breakfast at the Juda-ka-tal campsite. 

The trail continues to climb on the ridge that takes you deeper into the woods, you will see the lake disappearing gradually. A short hike across a path covered with snow will lead you to the height of one of the peaks of Kedarkantha. 

 After a brief hike, you will reach the Kedarkantha base camp. Eat early and go to sleep as the trek begins at about 3 am in order to catch the beautiful sunrise. 

Day 4: Kedarkantha base camp – summit and trek back to Sankri

Wake up early in the morning and get ready to move toward the summit. The trek will start at 3 am to have a beautiful view of the sunrise. The first trail is easy with a gentle incline and it passes through a thick oak forest for about an hour. 

After about half an hour of trekking through a series of switchbacks, you will reach the final summit of Kedarkantha by the break of dawn. Witness the 360-degree view of some of the famous mountain peaks and ranges in that area. After you’ve spent some time at the summit you will have to reach the Kedarkantha base camp for lunch and then you will head back to Hargaon. 

You will stay at the campsite in Hargaon overnight and then the next day you will trek back to the Sankri village.