Lamayuru to Darcha trek is the most popular trail into Zangskar valley via Shingo La. Lamayuru – Darcha trek starts from famous and ancient buddhist monastery of Lamayuru and proceeds into Zangskar though most isolated villages of Lingshet, Photoksar and then the headquarter of Zangskar called Padum. Further this trek leads you to Darcha in Himachal Pradesh via Phuktal and Bardan monasteries.
Duration : 21 days
Best Time : June to October
Highest Point: Shinkhul La (5080m)
Highlight : People, Village, Wildlife and High Passes.
Physical Challenge : Moderate
Day 1 :- Leh to Lamayuru 0800hr
Drive to Lamayuru en route visit Liker and Alchi Monastery. Reach Leh by afternoon. Overnight in camp /Guest House.
Day 2 :- Lamayuru to Wanla (3250m) 2-3hr
Walk down along the stream towards east and then after 20 minutes cross the stream near the Chorten. Walk along another stream towards southward and then east up to the Prikiting La (3700m). After the pass you reach down the river in the Shillakung valley.
The trail to the right also leads to Zangskar via Snigutse La. Take the right trail with chorten and Mani wall. Cross the river and the campsite is reached passing through the houses near the second bridge and tented restaurant.
Day 3 :- Wanla to Hanupatta (3970m) 6-7hr
Cross the river and the stream and walk along the road eastward. The trail splits into two, one going to the left leading towards Alchi and Sumda Chanmo. Cross the bridge and walk along the road for sometimes.
After crossing another bridge, the trail enters into a Hanupatta gorge, which is very dangerous for ponies. Cross the first bridge and walk ignoring the second bridge, passing through a stupa the gorge turns into a narrow valley. The Hanupatta is reached after an easy ascent.
Day 4 :- Hanupatta to Photoksar (4050m) via Sirsirla (4850m) 6-7hr
Walk along the stream crossing the tributaries and then stream to the left. Walk up to Sirirla (4850m). Walk along the stream leading to the Photoksar village. The campsite is just before the village across the stream.
Day 5 :- Photksar to SingayLa base (4300m) – 8hr
Walk down leaving the village and the stream on your left side. On the way comes a few Pulu (harders shelter), after crossing the stream the trail starts going up to the base of Singayla. Pitch the tent after a few minutes walk from the herders shelter.
Day 6 :- Singayla base to Lingshet (3950m) 5-6hr
Start walking up to Singay La (5050m). Walking down the pass the trail goes to your left, which goes to Yulchung Nerags. Take the right trail to the same direction and you are reached Kyukpa la (4430).
Leaving Kyukpala again take the right trail to the same direction down to a hamlet. Cross the stream and walk upwardsto Margola (4500m). The Lingshet village is reached after the descent of the pass. The Campsite near the School. The monastery is above the village on the left hand side.
Day 7 :- Lingshet to Snyertse (3800m) 8hr
Walk down the stream through the fields and an easy ascent starts after crossing the stream. Reach Hanumala (4800m) from where you can have the view of Lingshet. Walk down along the stream and the Campsite is near the tree.
Day 8 :- Snyertse to Hanamur (3450m) 6hr
Cross the stream and walk upward for sometimes leaving the stream to your left. After a curve start walking up to the stream, crossing the bridge, the steep ascent takes you to Parfila (3950m). Walk down to the Zangskar River and the trail leads along the river till Hanamur, which has herder shelters. The camp is near the field and the river. Hanamur has only two houses.
Day 9 :- Hanamur to Pishu 4-5hr
Walk along the Zanskar River passing through Pidmo. Overnight in the camp.
Day 10 :- Pishu to Karsha (3650m) 4hr
Walk along the Zanskar river towards Karsha passing through Rinam village. Camp near the stream near the monastery. Visit Karsha monastery and overnight in the tent.
Day 11 :- Karsha to Padum (3610m) 2hr
Walk towards Padum crossing the river and Padum is reached after passing through Pibiting village adjacent to Padum. Check in Hotel Ibex and visit Sani and Stakrimo monastery. After the Hot Lunch Overnight in the hotel.
Day 12 :- Rest at Padum (3610m)
Today is the rest day and you can visit monasteries of Sani and Staskrimo. After the Lunch at your leisure. Overnight in the hotel.
Day 13 :- Padum to Raru (3800m) 5-6hr
Walk along the rough road along the Lungnak River. Passing through Bardan Gonpa and Mune village. The campsite is near the bridge.
Day 14 :- Raru to Pepula (3750m) 5hr
Cross the river and along the river with many ups and downs. And the Pepula is reached near the stream. Campsite is near the teashop.
Day 15 :- Pepula to Purne (3775m) 4-5 hrs
Cross the stream and walk up to the next bridge near Tantse. Cross the Lungnak river and walk to wards north for Purne, where you have to camp.
Day 16 :- Purne to Phuktal (3900m) to Purne 5hr
Walk towards Phugtal Monastery and walk back to the Camp at Purne. Overnight in the Camp.
Day 17 :- Purne to Sking (4000m) 6-7hr
Walk towards south and cross the same bridge. Walk southward passing through yal. Overnight in the Camp.
Day 18 :- Sking (Hing or Kargyak) to Lhakhang (4450m) 6hr
Walk towards Kargyak and the camp site is just across the bridge. Overnight in the camp.
Day 19 :- Lhakhang to Ramjak (4300m) via Shinkunla 6-7hr
Again walk along the river and the ascent starts after a few miles walk. Reach Shinkunla (5090m) top and other side of the pass is little bit difficult. Arrive Ramjak passing through Chumik Nakpo. The Campsite is near a Mani wall. Overnight in the Camp.
Day 20 :- Ramjak to Palhamo (3700m) 5-6hr
Walk towards the same direction along the stream and after sometimes cross the river, and you are reached near a teashop. The campsite is after crossing the bigger stream. Overnight in the Camp.
Day 21 :- Pal Lhamo to Darcha Sumo (3300m) 3-4hr
Today is the last day with short walk passing through the villages of Chika and Rarik villages. From where the motor able road starts and it takes you to Darcha Sumdo.