Rustik Travel

Stok Kangri Summit Climb

  • Stok Kangri Climb
  • Stok Kangri Climb
  • Thiksey Monastery
  • Stok Kangri Trek
  • Stok Kangri Climb
  • Stok Kangri Climb
  • Stok Kangri Climb
  • Stok Kangri Climb

Ladakh is a true representation of India. They say you can’t go 100 meteres in India without seeing a change in its cultural landscape... In Ladakh, you can’t go 100 meters without seeing a change in its natural landscape. And Stok Kangri is a gateway to high-altitude climbing. After all it is higher than any mountain in five continents – Africa, Antarctica, Australia, Europe and North America (almost). So if you want to test your limits and of course get bragging rights while doing so, this is the peak to summit. And once you are on top, its quite a view of the Karakoram ranges incl. the second highest peak K2.

Mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.

Ed Viesturs

Overview

  • Destination: Ladakh
  • Location: Stok Village
  • Departure: Leh
  • Google Map Co-ordinates: 33.9861° N, 77.4425° E
  • Highest Altitude: 6,137 m/20,165 ft.
  • Nearest City (Airport): Leh
  • Dates: 9-17 Jul, On request
  • Months: July – September
  • Level: Strenuous
  • Guide: Available
  • On request

Experience

Stok Kangri is one of the best climbing peaks of Ladakh. A challenging climb in the heart of the valley that goes to a height of over 20,000 ft.. Classified as extreme altitude, testing your endurance limits and giving you bragging rights for the rest of your life to reach a place very very few will ever go.

This is a proper mountaineering expedition. Use of snow boots and technical equipment while negotiating permanent snow and effective acclamatization.

There is a shorter route directly from Leh where acclimatised and experienced mountaineer have summited Stok Kangri in 4-5 days from Leh, we give ourselves more days to summit (incl. mandatory acclimatisation of two days in Leh) and come back to Leh since the inexperienced should tread carefully in extreme altitude and follow the mountaineering and acclimatization guidelines to completely enjoy this experience. During acclimatisation one should cross a 5,000 m pass at least once before attempting Stok Kangri. Therefore, we combine either of the two scenic trek routes of Spituk-Stok Trek or Markha Valley Trek before the summit climb.

The base for this climb is Stok village- about 15 km drive from Leh. We trek to the left of the stream via Mankarmo, en route encounter routes going towards the Markha Valley and Stok La. From Mankarmo we move to the base camp, then to the Advance base camp with acclimatization days in between and finally two days for the summit attempt.

Please note that you need to be very fit to climb the summit.

Itinerary

STOK KANGRI CLIMBING ITINERARIES

ITINERARY 1 - SPITUK-STOK TREK ROUTE: 9 DAYS
Day 1 / Leh (3,524 metres/11,562 ft)
Arrive in Leh. Explore the place. Visit Shanti Stupa and Leh Palace. Explore the Leh market. Acclimatise and rest.
Day 2 / In & around Leh
Visit the beautiful Thiksey and Hemis monasteries. Explore Leh.
Day 3 / Leh to Spituk to Zingchen (3,400 m/11,161 ft) To Rumbak Camp (3,860 m/12,660 ft): Drive to Zingchen - 1.5 hour. 7 km/3-4 hours trek
Today we start from Leh. Prior acclimatisation (at least two days) is mandatory for anyone to start today.
Day 4 / Rumbak Camp to Mankarmo (4,380 m/14,375 ft) via Stok La Pass (5,000 m/16,404 ft): 11 km/7-8 hours
The path is pretty flat but we will gain altitude gradually. We will cross the quaint Rumbak village and further pass through the serene meadows and grasslands as we reached the Stok La base. (Stok La means mountain pass for Stok. La is the Ladakhi word for pass). We will walk a bit more to 4380 m at Mankarmo campsite.
Day 5 / Mankarmo to Stok Kangri Base Camp (4,900 m/16,352 ft): 3.5 km/3-4 hours
Today will be 3-4 hours trek gradually ascending across the rocky terrain housing the cute Marmots. As we approach the Base camp we will feel the dip in temperature and the thinness of air. The base camp is an uneven flat ground where we might see other climbers camped as well.
Day 6 / Acclimatization in Stok Kangri Base Camp
Today will be the acclimatization day at the base camp. We will wear our gaiters (worn below the knee used while snow walking), snow boots (Koflachs) and crampons (traction devices worn below the boots to walk on the snow). We will practice walking on snow.
Day 7 / Summit Day – Base Camp – Stok Kangri peak (6,137 m/20,165 ft) – Base Camp: 9 km/8-12 hours
We will start around midnight and walk through the glacier and reach the snowline and ascend on the snow all the way to the ridge. And again to the top. It is an arduous climb esp. the air is thinner as we ascend. We will be roped together and walk together to avoid any slips esp. on the ridge. It may take more than 10-15 hours to climb and descend depending on your speed. So be prepared.
Day 8 / Buffer day
We will have one buffer day in case there is bad weather and we would need another day for summit attempt. Else we will proceed to Leh.
Day 9 / Trek to Stok village: 12 km/4-5 hours. Drive to Leh: 30 min
Today, we walk down to Stok Village. From there we would drive down to Leh, which is a 20 min drive.
ITINERARY 2 - MARKHA VALLEY-STOK TREK ROUTE: 14 DAYS
Day 1 / Leh (3,524 metres/11,562 ft)
Arrive in Leh. Explore the place. Visit Shanti Stupa and Leh Palace. Explore the Leh market. Acclimatise and rest.
Day 2 / In & around Leh
Visit the beautiful Thiksey and Hemis monasteries. Explore Leh.
Day 3 / Drive Leh to Chilling (3 hours) and trek Chilling to Skiu (3,400 m/11,155 ft): 2-3 hours
Two days of acclimatisation in Leh is mandatory before starting today. The trek starts at the beautiful village of Chilling, which incidentally is the only village in Ladakh that has provided metal works such as copper, bronze, tin, silver and iron to the Leh market through the centuries. We will finish the day by hiking through a spectacular gorge before pitching camp at Skiu (3300m). Within this idyllic village lies an old monastery and ruins of an old castle (once a rest stop for the Royal family on their way to Srinagar).
Day 4 / Skiu to Markha (3,700 m/12,139 ft) : 7-8 hours
Following the Markha River, we will hike through the lovely valley on a fairly level path. The trail crosses the river at various points, and passes through winter settlements that contain Lhatos (religious shrines for local deities) and Mani walls (stones inscribed with Buddhist prayers). During peak season, a number of tented teahouses will be open, providing hearty refreshment. After cross the river for the last time, we will arrive in Markha, the largest village in the valley, consisting of around 20 houses, an old monastery and a ruined fort.
Day 5 / Markha to Thachungtse (4,150 m/13,615 ft) : 5-6 hours
The Markha valley trail continues past old stone-mills, a ruined castle and the auspicious monastery of Techa, which is proudly perched on a towering cliff that looms above Markha, well worth visiting if we have the energy! The path then intersects the river several times before cutting through the last hamlets in the valley. After leaving the village of Umlung, we will be afforded our first view of Kangyatse (6,400 m/20,997 ft), which will stay in sight until we cross Kongmaru La. After we break for lunch in the village of Hangkar (the last in the valley), we will press onward to the lovely green pasture of Thachungste, where we will camp.
Day 6 / Thachungtse to Nimaling (4,720 m/15,486 ft) : 4 hours
Today the trail will lead us up to the beautiful plateau of Nimaling, where the people of the Markha Valley bring their herds to graze during the summer months. At 4720m, Nimaling is the highest camp on the trek, giving us spectacular views of Kang Yatse to the right, the Zangskar Range and the Markha Valley below.
Day 7 / Nimaling to Shangsumdo (3,660 m/12,008 ft) via Kongmaru La (5,130 m/16,830 ft) : 7 hours
After breakfast, we will cross Kongmaru La, the highest pass on the trek. Here we have a wonderful view of the surrounding mountains and valleys. The 2-hour descend is quite steep, but will gradually level as we enter Shang Gorge, with its strange and otherworldly rock formations. More river crossings bar our way before we arrive at the sour-spring of Chuskurmo (used in traditional medicine by the Amchi doctors). After a break, we will pass through a couple of villages before reaching Shangsumdo.
Day 8 / Shangsumdo to Stok Village via Martselang : 2 hours trek, 1-1.5 hour drive
We will have a pleasant 2-hr walk along a jeep road to Martselang, where the jeep will pick us up. On the way to Stok village where we will camp for the night, it might be possible to visit some of the great monasteries of Ladakh such as Thikse, Hemis and Shey.
Day 9 / Stok village (3600 m/ 11,800 ft) - Mankarmo (4,380 m/14,375 ft): 4-5 hours
We hike up from Stok village to Mankarmo.
Day 10 / Mankarmo to Stok Kangri Base Camp (4,900 m/16,352 ft): 3-4 hours
Today will be 3-4 hour trek gradually ascending across the rocky terrain housing the cute Marmots. As we approach the Base camp we will feel the dip in temperature and the thinness of air. The base camp is an uneven flat ground where we might see other climbers camped as well.
Day 11 / Acclimatization in Stok Kangri Base Camp
Today will be the acclimatization day at the base camp. We will wear our gaiters (worn below the knee used while snow walking), snow boots (Koflachs) and crampons (traction devices worn below the boots to walk on the snow). We will practice walking on snow.
Day 12 / Summit Day – Base Camp – Stok Kangri peak (6,137 m/20,165 ft) – Base Camp: 9 km/8-12 hours
We will start around midnight and walk through the glacier and reach the snowline and ascend on the snow all the way to the ridge. And again to the top. It is an arduous climb esp. the air is thinner as we ascend. We will be roped together and walk together to avoid any slips esp. on the ridge. It may take more than 10-15 hours to climb and descend depending on your speed. So be prepared.
Day 13 / Buffer day
We will have one buffer day in case there is bad weather and we would need another day for summit attempt. Else we will proceed to Leh.
Day 14 / Trek to Stok village: 12 km/4-5 hours. Drive to Leh: 30 min
Today, we walk down to Stok Village. From there we would drive down to Leh, which is a 20 min drive.
Please Note:
(1) Proper acclimatisation is key to successful Stok Kangri summit climb. Therefore, you are requested to have at least two days of acclimatisation in Leh or at a similar altitude just before starting this trek. In fact it is mandatory. (2) It is also important to have a proper diet and you should be hydrated well during this trek. (3) Please do not try to attempt this peak in 3-4 days without proper facilities, equipment and guidance from experienced guides and porters. If somebody promises you this, please do not go ahead with them. It might be dangerous. (4) Enjoy the trek and have a safe climb. Do not compromise on necessary comforts and safety.

Inclusions

Inclusions

  • Camping & Trekking equipments including tents, carry mat, dining tent, toilet tent, hot water bottles, gas heater (when needed).
  • Personally trained professional guides, cook, porter/ponies to carry equipment as well as personal luggage.
  • Forest entry and permits wherever needed.
  • Ground support from an experienced team of adventurers and guides.
  • High comfort/luxury trek facilities.
  • Food & Beverages: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Tea etc. (Multi cuisine veg/non-veg prepared by well trained cooks).

Exclusions

  • Any medical expenses, evacuation etc.
  • Personal clothing - incl. jackets etc., Sleeping bags (could be arranged on request).
  • Any kind of Insurance.
  • Any cost of personal nature.
  • Additional taxes.
  • Accommodation in Leh. Could be arranged on request.

Map

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