The Kedarkantha trek is a trek for 6 days and you go up to the height of 12,500 ft. A lot of people might confuse it with the Kedarnath temple but they are different. This trek is in Uttrakhand in Govind Pashu Vihar National Park. The Kedarkantha trek is moderately difficult but a very popular trek. Once you reach the top you will understand why trekking up till here was all worth it. In the beginning this place was nothing but a grazing ground and had a temple. Over the years it became a popular trekking spot and is a well-known tourist place now.
Best time to visit
The Kedarkantha trek is one of the few treks that can be done almost throughout the year. Except for July and August which is peak rainy season, the trek can be done anytime. During the winter season you will get to see snowfall and the forest will be covered with snow. The temperature would be very low and the weather would be cold. It would be an adventure to reach the summit. The spring season would have residual snow. The forest and meadows would be colorful. In summers, the mornings would be hot but evenings can be cold. The greenery in the summer season would be something to look forward to. In the autumn season you may get some rainfall till the start of september. In all, you can go for the trek anytime of the year except peak rainy season.
How to reach
Gaichawan Gaon is the base camp for this trek. To reach Gaichawan Gaon there are a few options that you can opt from. You can take a bus from Dehradun to Sankri. These buses start at 6 and 7 am in the morning. The price is not very high and the cost per person would be around rupees 400. If you are reaching Dehradun later, then you should take a bus to Purola and from there a cab. Once you reach Sankri, take a sharing cab to reach Gaichawan. Gaichawan is only 4 km from Sankri so you can also walk there.
The first day is when you reach Gaichawan gaon which is the base camp and you will also be spending the night here. Day two you start trekking to Julota, which is approximately a 6 hour trek. There are hardly any water sources so make sure you carry enough water with you. After passing various villages and rivers you will reach Julota, which is the next campsite. On day 3 you start from Julota and trek for about 4 hours and reach Pukhrola. The trek distance is less but it is more steep, so you should be hydrated. After crossing streams you will reach Pukhrola, where you will find an amphitheater-like setting. This is the campsite for day 3. The fourth day is when you actually reach Kedarkantha summit. On the same day you also have to Akhoti Thatch, where the campsite will be situated. You will have to start the trek very early as it would take about 7-8 hours. You can’t stay anywhere near the summit so you have to come to Akhoti Thatch, passing Pukhrola. The second last day is when you return back to Gaichawan Gaon which will take around 6 hours. This is actually the last day of trekking. You spend the night at Gaichawan Gaon and next day return back to Dehradun.
Level of difficulty
The trek is at a moderate level. The trekking days are a bit long and there are steep ascends to climb. You will have to make sure that you train yourselves a little before going for the trek. If you start indulging yourself in physical activities then it will help you on the trek.
What to carry on the trek
When you go for a trek there are a few things that you have to carry, as they will not be available easily on the trek. Also, some things can’t be bought from outside like your essentials. Here is a list of things that you need to carry with you on the trek –
- A strong backpack that can carry upto 50-60 litre
- Trekking shoes that are a proper fit for you and also has a good grip
- Clothes appropriate for the weather, carry extra layers if you feel cold easily
- Sunglasses, cap
- Gloves, socks
- A medical kit with all essential medications apart from general medicines
- Trekking pole and torch
These are a few of the important things that are needed on the trek for sure, so don’t forget to carry them.
This is a very popular and fun trek to do when in Uttrakhand. It can be done anytime during the year, so don’t miss it.