ST/ 05: 10 Days Goche-la Trek
- Max Elevation: 5000 m
- Grade: Moderate to strenuous
- Period: Apr-May and Oct to Nov
Trek through forests with Himalayan flora to the Alpine Yak meadows of Dzongri. Walk upto Dabla Khang, the peak from where the Sikkimese ruler worshiped, Mount Khangchendzonga. Incredible views of 6000 to 8000 m high peaks of the Khangchendzonga group. Continue along the Praig chu valley to Goche-la pass at 5000 m, for close up views of Khangchendzonga. Upland meadows, yak grazing grounds, lakes and glaciers.
Trek tour can start and end at Bagdogra, Kalimpong, Darjeeling, or Gangtok.
Day 01: Bagdogra to Yoksom, 1785 m
Assistance on arrival at the Bagdogra airport and drive to
Yuksom which takes about 6 hrs. Overnight at Hotel Tashi Gang or similar.
Day 02: Yuksom - Bakhim, 2750 m (12 kms in 6-7 hrs)
After breakfast, Start trekking from Yuksom (1,785 m). Trek through the village and its terraced fields, before entering oak and pine forest high above the Rathong River. The trail is well defined, with many bridges over the side rivers. Just beyond the confluence of the Rathong and Prek rivers, the trail descends steeply to a cross a stream, to ascent steeply 600m up through forests to the small settlement of Bakhim (2750m), offering fine views down the Rathong Gorge to Yuksam. Overnight at Camp.
Day 03 : Bakhim – Dzongri (10kms in 6- 7 hrs)
The trail from Bakhim heads up through grazing meadows, and past the first rhododendron and magnolia trees, to the village of Tsoka (3000 M), from here you have great views of the mountains. Tsoka is a comparatively new village, founded in the early 1960s when the Sikkim government granted this tract of land to Tibetan refugees who had fled over the border in 1959. The village consists of a dozen or so houses, a Gompa (Tibetan Buddhist Temple), and rows of chortens (Buddhist stone monuments) lining the main trail.. From Tsoka, the path climbs steeply, followed by many ups and downs, as it crests several spurs, and then descends only to climb to the next spur. But the going is good as you walks through gentle Rhododendron covered slopes, with good views. Yaks pass you at many a turn, and pheasants are occasionally surprised. As the trail crests the final climb to Dzongri, the great wall of peaks along the crest of the Singalila Ridge come into view . These include Kokthang, 6147 m, Rathong, 6679 m, and Kabru South, 7338 m. On the East Mount Pandim, 6691 m and Juponu, 5936 m, rear their heads to form the eastern bastion of the Prek Chhu Valley. Overnight in Tents at Dzongri.
Day 04: At Dzongri , 4030 m
An easy day for a bit of relaxation after the hard climb and also to savour the great views. Wake up very early morning and trek to nearby Dzongri Peak, about 300m above the camp. This is the best View point for Mount Kangchenjunga and the surrounding peaks, return back to Camp for hot breakfast. Latter relax and stroll around the meadows or take the 3-4 hrs round trek to Dzongri la - a pass leading to the Bikbari valley. Overnight in tents.
Day 05: Dzongri – Thansing. 3800 m (5 kms in 3-4 hrs)
After a breakfast, set off on the trail along the right bank of the Prek Chhu river. After cresting the hill, the path drops into the river valley crosses over a bridge to climb up the far side for an hour to reach Thansing is located below the slopes of Mount Pandim. The camp is set near the Prek Chu river. Overnight in tents.
Day 06: Thansing – Lamune, 4000 m ( 4 kms in 3hrs)
The trail from Thansing climbs gently north, up the valley, along Alpine meadows. There are superb views of the south face of Kanchendzonga and the peaks of Pandim , Tingchinkhang and Juponu hover above the valley. We camp a little below the Samiti Lake at Lamune . After reaching camp, walk up the trail which skirts a series of glacial moraines and meadows to the emerald green lake at Samiti, 4,150 m.. Overnight camp at Lamune.
Day 07 : Lamune, 4000 m – Goecha La Pass, 5002 m – Thangsing, 3800 m 13 Kms in 8 to 9 hrs)
Start very early for the final 4 to 5 hrs climb to Goche la, 5002 m. Skirting the Samiti Lake, the trail begins with a gentle upward gradient for about half an hour, follows the glacial moraine and then drops to a dry lake at Zemathang. A rough scramble over rocks and boulders with a rise of about 400 m gets to the top of the Goche la view point. The walk to the pass takes about half an hour more. The Goecha La pass is formed by a depression between Pandim and the Kabru spurs. It overlooks the Talung Valley and commands a very impressive view of the south face of Kangchendzonga. Trek down back to Thansing . Overnight in Tents.
Day 08: Thangsing - Lampokhri - Kochchuring ( 6 hrs)
From Thangsing, day trek to the Lam Pokhri, a lake; high up in the mountains. Round trek of 06 hrs. Returning to Thangsing continue downhill for about 40 mins to the riverside camp at Kochchuring. Overnight in tents.