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Padum to Manali Trek
 
Highest Altitude: 5,340m
Duration: 9 Days

If one drove to Padum it is advisable to either include a rest day before trekking higher or complete this stage over two days. From Zongkul monastery the trail leads up the true left side of the Mulung Tokpo to a natural rock bridge. Cross the river here and ascend the grassy meadows before the route diverts up a steep ridge to enter a side valley on the true right of the main valley. There follows a tiring stage through an extensive boulder field to a wide glacial valley where a cluster of stone shelters and a small grassy meadow mark the overnight camp (4,490m).

Day 1:
Padum To Zongkul Monastery (Average walking time 6 to 7 hours)

Day 2:
Zongkul Monastery To Base Of Umasi La (Average walking time 6 to 7 hours)

Day 3:
Umasi La Base To High Camp (Average walking time 7 hours)

Day 4:
High Camp To Suncham (3,250m) (Average walking time 8 hours)

Day 5:
Suncham To Marchel (Average walking time 3 hours)

Day 6:
Marchel To Atholi/Gularbagh (Average walking time 8 hours)

Note: Until recently most trekkers would take the bus from Atholi to Kishtwar and the following day catch the bus to Jammu or Srinagar and the Kashmir valley. However, this option is not recommended for the time being. The current political situation in Kishtwar is worse than in the Kashmir Valley with many of the J&K separatist groups active in the region.

Option: The alternative is to continue trekking up the Chenab valley for three stages to the village of Kilar and onward transport to Manali and the Kullu valley.

Day 7:
Atholi/Gularbagh To Shoal (Average walking time 2½ to 3 hours)

Day 8:
Shoal To Istahari (Average walking time 6 to 7 hours)

Day 9:
Istahari To Kilar (Average walking time 6 to 7 hours)

GETTING AWAY
The jeep road to Kilar has a regular bus service to Lahaul and Manali. One can also take a hike in a truck as an alternative and allow at least two days to reach Manali.

 
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