Travel Tips for Best Journey

Casting loose from civilization and living in the wilds brings you back into the guidance of clear natural rhythms. afternoon shadow prompts the search for shelter; a healthy appetite treads hard on heels of the thirst and hunger;hard physical effort is followed by the need for the replenishment of deep slumber; bird songs and the first ray of sun raise your head in the morning; and as the day progress you seek agreement with whichever of natures mood comes your way. when you travel in a country you are guest, sharing the environment with the locals. its only fair that you do your best to minimize your impact on their land and resources by carefully choosing the path you follow, where you stay, and what you take into or out of your destination. aim to leave a little evidence as possible of your passage through the area and avoid disturbing the natural balance.

What to take

How much you take is a very personal decision. Some trekkers love to travel as light as the locals, while others are happy only when they have countless bit of equipment’s for every possible occasion, most 0f which you will never takes experience to know what you will find useful, if you have hired ponies for your trek, you have still got to get your luggage to Ladakh. You will that you will be much free with a light pack as it allows you to trek easily travel. 

Equipping yourself for a trek can cost a considerable amount of money and if you don’t really know what you are looking for, you can make expensive mistakes. There is no substitute for a knowledgeable mountaineering shop, where all your questions can be answered and here at Snowbird Himalaya Adventure you can please feel free to ask us if you have any concerns regarding your trek. We will be more than happy to help you best as possible.

While trekking you will need a large rucksack (65-80 liters capacity) in which to carry all your needs for the trek. It should have a stiffened back system and be fully adjustable for a perfect fit. While organizing you trek with Snowbird Himalaya Adventures and going on an organized trek a large hold all will do the job just as well as a rucksack when you are trekking. You will also need a day pack for carrying the things you need with you throughout the day, such as your camera, a water bottle, some food, water proofs and a fleece or jumper, a day pack of 30-40 liters should do fine.

The most important thing is to make sure they fit properly, when fitting boots, try lots of different makes and models, and wear the same socks as you would when walking, make sure you have enough room in front f your toes ( so that it don’t keep hitting the end when you descend a steep slope), by pushing your foot forward in the boot before lacing up and checking that you can easily slide a finger down between your heel and the back of the boot. Then slide your foot to the back, once you have bought them, wear them in thoroughly before trekking: this is very important. 

Good quality boots either have a dual density sole or a shock absorbing insert in the heel to reduce the effect of jarring with each step.

The traditional wearing of a thin liner sock under a thicker wool sock is no longer necessary, if you choose a high-quality sock specifically designed for walking. the one with thick spongy pads around the ball and heel of the footwear are particularly comfortable, three pairs are ample.

Pair of sports sandals, invaluable for crossing the countless streams you will come across and are good for lounging around camp. It means you have an alternative to wearing your hiking boots in Delhi and Leh. Light weights trainers are a good substitute. 

Keeping your feet dry and clean is the best way to keep them healthy and blister free, when you stop for lunch, take off your boots and socks and pull the footbeds out of the boots so you can let everything dry in the sun. washing your feet every evening will prevent any nasty fungus growing, so will keeping your socks reasonably clean.


A thin and light wear thermal top, one with long arm and a collar if at possible, T-shirt or light cotton or poly cotton shirt. Mid layer a medium thickness woolen jumper, or a mid-weight fleece top. A down jacket if you feel cold in the evening.

The outer layer must be capable of keeping out the wind, rain and snow. Jackets made from water proof, wind proof, ultra-light wind proof top.

It can be quite chilly at night and at high altitude, so a pair of thermal long johns or thick tights is a pretty much essential, cotton trousers and skirts are easily available in India.poly cotton trousers are even better. A lightweight pair of water proof over trousers can keep you warm as well as dry but isn’t vital.

A sun hart that protects the back as well as the front of you head and a sunglass offer 100 % UV protection are necessary combat.

A warm woolly hat and a pair of warm mittens or gloves are welcome.

A large handkerchief or bandanna. Underwear three pairs.

A good quality sleeping bag is indispensable, temperature plummet at night even in Leh, so your bag should be warm, a three-season bag is fine for July and August, but if trekking before or after this you will find a four-season bag preferable unless you have an excellent circulation. 

Soap, shampoo, tooth brush, tooth paste, loo paper, razor, sanitary towels, good quality after sun and lip balm, a high factor sun screen or sun block is vital.

Ready-made first aid kit for outdoor activities are a sensible investment as they solve the problem, if you want to make up your wo, it should include plaster/band aids for minor cuts: steri- strips for closing large wounds, moleskin, compeed or second skin for blisters, bandages for holding dressing, splints. Various size sterile dressing for wound; adhesive tape; antiseptic wipes; antiseptic cream//liquid.

No water in India can be considered safe to drink unless you have purified it yourself. Water purification chemicals (iodine, chlorine) are rarely available in Leh, so bring enough plus some extra in case of breakage or loss.

Items include a liter water bottle, watch with an alarm, a torch/flash light, head torches are the most convenient, spare batteries and a bulb, boot laces, pen knife, a frisbee is a good way to integrate with the local kids. Ski/ trekking poles can significantly decrease the stress on joint and the spines, writing a diary is the best way to keep memories fresh, pocket games or a pack of cards.

Modern compact camera, bring a spare set of batteries, lens tissues and a brush are vital.

Travellers cheque are the best way to carry your money as its much safer than cash and you will get a better exchange rate in the bank. A credit card can be useful and serve as a great purpose for payments.

Keep your passports with you all the time, please make sure to have some color photocopies with you there are many check points especially on the way to Ladakh. If considering to ride or drive in India please make sure to bring along your international driving license. There are a number of ATMs in larger towns along the way, like Leh, Manali and Shimla. You may find it hard to withdraw or exchange cash in other towns, so it’s best to carry some with you. Foreign cash can be exchanged at the airport or at various exchange bureaus in Delhi – just be wary of scams and check the rates they’re offering. Also, check your notes carefully – this is somewhat tedious, but necessary. Some people will try to slip in dodgy, unusable notes to unwitting tourists – check for anything that’s ripped or worn across the middle fold. Many notes will have writing on them – a bit of scribble is ok, as long as it’s not over Gandhi’s face. 

Best time to visit Ladakh

Ladakh is surrounded by a ring of high mountains and snow covered passes which, before the airport was built at Leh, effectively cut off from the rest of the world for seven or eight months every year. Although the modern visitor can now fly into Leh at any time of the year, trekking is restricted to the five months when the region is free from the grip of winter. The great advantage of Ladakh as a trekking destination is that rainfall is rare. This makes it one of the only Himalayan regions in which it is possible and pleasurable to trek from late June to mid-September, when most other areas are suffering from the constant deluge of the Monsoon.

Ladakh is surrounded by a ring of high mountains and snow covered passes which, before the airport was built at Leh, effectively cut off from the rest of the world for seven or eight months every year. Although the modern visitor can now fly into Leh at any time of the year, trekking is restricted to the five months when the region is free from the grip of winter. The great advantage of Ladakh as a trekking destination is that rainfall is rare. This makes it one of the only Himalayan regions in which it is possible and pleasurable to trek from late June to mid-September, when most other areas are suffering from the constant deluge of the Monsoon.

Ladakh four seasons are not as even in length as those of other countries, the year begin dominated by the long, cold winter, which is separated from the short but hot summer by a brief spring and autumn, in many ways spring and autumn are little more the end and the beginning of winter and can hardly justify being called separate season.

It is still quiet cold during these months and snowfall is not uncommon at the beginning of April but by now the ground in the valleys has begun to thaw and activity has resumed in the villages. Trekking is feasible on low altitude routes such as from Likir to Temisgam and for those with winter walking experience some higher routes can be attempted. The snow still lies deep on the passes but with an early start you should be able to cross most on the firm crust of the frozen snow., but if you leave too late you will be sinking up your chest. The roads into Ladakh is still closed depending on the snowfall, so flying in and out is the only practical option. 

The trekking season begins in June, this is a good time to visit Ladakh and there won’t be many visitors. But you may have to fly into Leh as the roads may not have opened and some passes may prove difficult to trek across if there is still a lot of snow around.

Ladakh is at its busiest from the beginning of July to the end of August, this coincides with the opening of the Manali to Leh road linking Himachal Pradesh to Ladakh, which is guaranteed by the government to be kept open from the first week of July until 15th of September. The weather is good for trekking with hot days and refreshing cool nights, although at lower altitude it can be sometimes too hot to trek in the middle of the day. A decade or so ago you could almost guarantee a completely dry summer but recent changes in the weather patterns of the Himalaya (though by some to be global warming) means that a few days rain is now a distinct possibility, come prepared. 

September is one of the best months to come trekking as the numbers of people both on the trails and in Leh begin to tail off towards the end of August, if you come at the beginning of the month your stay will coincide with the Ladakh Festival. The temperature is pleasantly warm during the day, with our being too hot but you should come prepared for cold nights. Particularly when you are in the mountains. Many of the tea tents in the mountains will be closed from the beginning of September.  The Manali to Leh road is guarantee to be open until September 14th some years it can remain open through out October but you should be prepared to fly if the winter snow comes early.

At the beginning of November, the lasting snows of winter begin to fall and the streams freeze over for five months, the coldest months are January and February when temperatures fall as low as – 40 degree Celsius, transforming the Zanskar River into a frozen trade rout known as the chadar. By march this savage cold has gone, for experienced and well-prepared winter mountaineers and ski tourers the winter can provide some exciting possibilities. Such as the Frozen River trek and the Snow Leopard Trek. 

Despite its remoteness, Ladakh can be reached remarkably quickly from the west and it’s quite possible to fit an exciting and rewarding trekking holiday into two or three weeks.

If you are on a tight schedule and have to be back home by a certain date, you should be aware that buses and plane to and from the region occasionally get cancelled or delay by the weather. You must allow yourself a few days leeway to get back to Delhi from Leh.

 A schedule that works well for those short times is to get up to Ladakh as soon as possible after arriving in India and Leave your exploration of Delhi until the end of your holiday, aim to fly back from Leh about five days before you are due to fly back home, if all goes well, this will give you plenty of time to see Delhi and may be fit in a trip to the Taj Mahal in Agra as well. If on the other hand your flight from Leh is cancelled, you still have plenty of time to make it back to Delhi by road

If you are one of the lucky few who has no need to be back hoe by a set date there’s almost no end to the number of trails that can be walked and discovered in Ladakh.