Zanskar

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The famous Chadar trek along the Zanskar River in Ladakh, India. January 2007.

The Chardar trek is one of the most spectacular and cold treks that I have done. The trek follows the course of the Zanskar River through a narrow and steep gorge. During the trek you walk on the frozen surface of the river. The name ‘Chadar’ means sheet, which refers to the sheet of ice which covers the surface of the frozen river.

There are number of variations to the trek and I did a nine day version. We started at the village of Chilling and trekked for four days to the village of Lingshed. After spending a day at Lingshed we trekked back along the same route. It is possible to do a longer version where you continue trekking and exit the gorge at the village of Zangla.

I took these photographs using my fully mechanical Nikon FM, 24mm lens and used slide film. I didn’t trust digital camera batteries in the -25c cold.

Trek route

  1. Fly to Leh 3500m
  2. Drive to Chilling and trek to Tilad Do camp 3100m
  3. Trek to Gyalpo camp 3170m
  4. Trek to Dib Cave 3225m
  5. Trek to Nyeraks camp 3390m
  6. Trek to Lingshed
  7. Rest day at Lingshed
  8. Return via same route

Route map