How often have you heard of the monsoon treks, especially in the Himalayas? I guess you’re still thinking!
The Valley of Flowers trek in Uttarakhand, India, is one such trek. It’s best explored during monsoons. The entire valley blossoms with a variety of colourful flowers. It is a 4-day trek.
The Valley of Flowers Trek itinerary has two parts:
- The Valley of Flowers trek itself.
- The Hemkund Sahib trek.
Valley of Flowers Trek, Uttarakhand
The Valley of Flowers Trek is a world heritage site declared by UNESCO in 2005. Englishman Frank Smythe discovered the Valley in 1931.
It’s located in the Chamoli district in Uttrakhand. It is situated in Nanda Devi National Park in the Garhwal region. The trek spreads over 8-10 km and takes about an entire day. You will be mesmerized by the pristine beauty of the valley.
It is considered a botanical flower garden in India and comprises more than 500 flowers. Considering this trek is one of the oldest in India, the aura and beauty are maintained by the Government and by the cooperation of trekkers. It is a no-plastic zone.
Valley of Flowers is a huge valley that expands to infinity. The giant mountains touch the clouds. During rains, the mountain peaks get covered with fog and mist. Hearing the Pushpavati river flow in the middle of the valley gushing through the rocks is a pleasure.
How to reach Valley of Flowers
The nearest city to the trek is Rishikesh. It’s well connected to major cities via train, bus, or flight. Next travel to Govindghat (from where the trek starts) via a vehicle or public transport. Then travel from Govindghat to Phoolna Village for 4 km via vehicle. From Phoolna village to Ghangaria (basecamp) is a trek of 10 km covered within 4-5 hours. At Ghangaria, the path breaks into two treks – one to the Valley of Flowers and the second to Hemkund Sahib trek.
Weather at Valley of Flowers
Ghangharia to the Valley of flowers is a 10 km long monsoon trek. It doesn’t rain very heavily in the valley itself. You may experience a light shower for small parts of the day. The weather is enjoyable with light showers and drizzle.
What to wear for Valley of Flowers Trek
At Ghangaria you might experience a few heavy showers of rain. But as the altitude gets higher, the rains get lesser. We recommend carrying rainwear, a poncho, and a rain cover for your bags. Avoid carrying an umbrella, it adds to extra bag weight. It’s better to be hands-free while trekking with a stick.
Difficulty Level of Valley of Flowers
The Valley of Flowers trek has a moderate difficulty level. It might be hard to trek in the rain. But it’s never canceled due to rains. Generally, trekkers wait hopefully and patiently for the weather to clear up. With better visibility, you get better views.
Enchant your senses with the alluring beauty of blooming flowers in the middle of the vast Valley. There will be a variety of different colorful flowers, from emerging buds to full blossomed flowers to wilted ones. They color the entire Valley making it vibrant.
If you go in late September, you might not get to see the flowers. The peak season for flowers is from July to August. But, you might see the valley better with a clear sky that’s generally covered with clouds and fog during monsoons. The glaciers are the source of the river Padmavati which flows throughout the valley.
The Temperature at Valley of Flowers
- Day 13-18° C
- Evening 7-8° C
- Day 3-5° C
Hemkund Sahib Trek
The second part of the Valley of Flowers is the Hemkund Sahib trek. Trekkers highly underestimate the difficulty level of this trek. Although the distance is just 6 km, the shift in attitude is drastic.
Difficulty Level of Hemkund Sahib Trek
Ghangaria is at 6600 ft and Hemkund is at 14000+ ft. So within 4-6 hours, you trek 6 km with a change in altitude of 4000+ ft. The trail is very steep with relative elevation. It is not a plain trail. If you don’t have basic trek fitness, it will take a toll on your health and might even spoil your trek experience. You may experience mountain sickness.
Feeling of breathlessness is most common for trekkers who haven’t prepared for the trek. As the altitude gets higher, you will be gasping for breath due to a lack of oxygen. Also, legs, hamstrings, and calves might ache which will further lead to exhaustion and spoil your trek. Even the weight of the backpack adds to the weight.
Trek Wear for Hemkund Sahib Trek
- Wear proper trekking shoes for a comfortable and safe trek.
- Carry all trekking gear including trekking stick.
- Physical fitness preparation: walking, jogging, or running along with climbing stairs for a minimum of 30 days.
- Mental preparation: expect rain, and an attitude to handle uncomfortable situations.
The trail will be slightly slippery due to the rain. But that doesn’t dampen the spirits of the trekkers. Lately, a stairway has been prepared for visitors and trekkers. The trail to Hemkund Sahib is mesmerizing. As you trek higher, you’ll witness the entire place with a panoramic view of the Valley of Flowers. It is a breathtaking and spectacular view.
Hemkund Sahib is a sight to behold, a highly revered place for the Sikhs. The atmosphere is pure and divine. It will be cold as it’s surrounded by melting glaciers and a freezing cold lake. Visit the Gurudwara and the Laxman Temple at Hemkund Sahib. The great 10th Sikh Guru Gobind Singh meditated at Hemkund surrounded by seven mountain peaks.
At Tripotude we assure a complete and spiritually fulfilling experience. To know about the Valley of Flowers trek package click here.