Kalap - a village at an altitude of 7,800 ft, forgotten in time.
Trek through virgin pine and deodhar forests and take in the stunning views of the snow-capped Bandarpoonch range.
Swim in enchanting forest pools.
Laze in the open meadows filled with summer flowers.
Enjoy unchanged villages and traditional hospitality.
Raft the exciting Tons river.
Best Time To Go: April to October
Trek, camp, and swim in this beautiful, forgotten part of the Indian Himalaya
The valley of the Tons river is a forgotten bit of the high mountains, situated at the edge of Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh. It is pristine and unspoilt. The gushing river offers some great white water rafting; the valleys and ridges offer treks that give you spectacular views and lose you in the forests of pine and deodar; high mountain streams; open meadows filled with flowers and the early shepherds with their herds; views of the high ranges that form our northern border with Tibet; unchanged villages with their still traditional homes that welcome you with age-old hospitality.
When you trek with MHE, you can be assured that we are backed by many years in the business of providing safe and sustainable adventure trips. The staff you deal with in the office, all the way through to the guides and porters on trek, have years of experience in safe and enjoyable trekking behind them. We can advise you on the right gear, the right training, and no question is too crazy for us to answer.
Our trips are designed for your maximum enjoyment and comfort, taking into consideration the environment and conditions, wherever you are.
We believe in sustainable, ethical and responsible tourism. Our guides are all certified and trained, the porters receive above standard wages, and we do not allow them to carry more than 30kg (the international standard set by IPPG). Our crew are all insured, and provided with suitable clothing and equipment.
We support the local economy wherever possible, and do NOT encourage giving any gifts of sweets, pens etc to the charming local children you meet along the trail. If you are really interested to donate something, please discuss with us first.
Our "all inclusive" trip means that you are not constantly rummaging for money, and you know up front what is included.
Dates: Trip starts from: Dehra Dun, Uttarakhand No. of days of the trip: 10 No. of trekking days: 6 Maximum altitude: 3,800 m, 12,500 ft Trekking Grade: Moderately Challenging All-Inclusive Cost: Please call us for details
DAY 1: ARRIVE AT DEHRA DUN, DRIVE TO TONS VALLEY
Arrive at Dehradun and drive to the Tons River Camp (230 kms, 8 hours, altitude 5000 ft). Our camp lies just off the unused road on the banks of the river. It does not get much better than this.
DAY 2: DAY AT BULL'S RIVER CAMP
A day at the Bull's River Camp, Tons - we will do a short day trek to the waterfall pool for a swim and acclimatization. Return to camp and prepare for our trek.
DAY 3: DRIVE TO MOTWAR, TREK TO KALAP
After an early breakfast, we take a short drive to Motwar up along the Tons river. (20 kms, 40 minutes) and begin our trek to the Kalap Village.
Kalap is a village lying forgotten in time, situated at an altitude of 7,500 ft, the village is nestled among virgin pine and deodar forests, and overlooks the gorge cut open by the roaring River Supin. The trek to Kalap begins with crossing the river and walking up through the pine forests (11 kms, 5 -7 hours). Reach Kalap (8,000 ft) by late afternoon/evening.
A young entrepreneur has helped to convert this tiny, old Garhwali village into traditional homestays.Be enchanted.
Stay overnight in the village with families in traditional Garhwali wooden homes.
DAY 4: TREK TO KARBA TOP
Trek after breakfast. We start our trek to the pastoral settlement of Karba (3.5 kms, 2 hours, 8,500 ft). Views of snow-capped mountains and terraced fields which are used to cultivate potato, wheat and millet. There is also a small temple at Karba.
Camp overnight in tents at Karba Top against the backdrop of Kedarkantha Peak.
DAY 5: TREK TO BANGLA BUGYAL
After breakfast, start off on the nomadic trail used by shepherds. The trail leads to the higher reaches - home to the famous high altitude grasslands called bugyals. Trek to Bangla Bugyal(4 kms, 3-4 hours, 9,500 ft). This is a vast patch of lush grassland. Here you will meet nomadic herdsmen, sit around a campfire, munch on fresh goat cheese and millet bread, and listen to tales of encounters with leopards, bears and a version of the mythical Himalayan creature - the Yeti. Harvested fresh from the forest nearby, you will be served food containing fresh greens and flavourful mushrooms.
Camp overnight in tents.
DAY 6: TREK TO VIJAY TOP
Start early on the hike upwards to the higher bugyals (7 kms, 6-7 hours, upwards of 12,500 ft). Lunch is served enroute. The hike treads through extremely dense pine and deodar forests, interspersed with wild mountain torrents. The bugyal begins where the tree line ends. We pitch tent at Vijay Top on the pristine grassland. Camp overnight in tents.
DAY 7: TREK DOWN TO KALAP
We climb back down to Kalap, (7 hours, 14.5 kms). We will spend the night with our original hosts –the village homestays.
DAY 8: TREK AND DRIVE TO TONS
After breakfast, trek back to the road head and drive to the Bull's River Camp, Tons.
DAY 9: MORNING RAFTING AT TONS, AFTERNOON FREE
We have a morning raft run on the Tons, perhaps some climbing and rappelling or cycling in the afternoon. Chill by the river, meditate, read, paint, bird-watch.
DAY 10: DEPART VIA DEHRA DUN
Return to Dehra Dun – fly out.
Our "all inclusive" trip means that you are not constantly rummaging for money, and you know up front what is included.
Nine nights accommodation in expedition camping tents and homestays on twin sharing basis.
9 Breakfasts, 8 Lunches, and 9 Dinners.
All government taxes included.
COSTS DO NOT INCLUDE:
International/Domestic air fare or train fare.
Pick up and drop off from airport/railway stations not included. We can arrange for it however, so let us know if you need to get picked up or dropped off. Nominal charges apply.
Unforeseen expenses that demand a change in itinerary like natural forces, changes in weather, road blockages, flight/train cancellations and illness.
Medical, Travel, or Evacuation insurance.
Expenses of a personal nature - tips, laundry, phone calls, beverages.
When we have groups of 4+ people we supply a comprehensive first aid kit carried by your guide. For individual trekkers and small groups (less than 4 people) we supply a basic first aid kit carried by your guide.
All guides and porters are fully equipped with gear and clothing (snow gear, warm gear, sleeping gear).
Sleeping bag and inner based on the altitude (this is supplied is most of our treks. Do check the inclusions under price details to be doubly sure).
What gear you will need to bring with you:
Sleeping bag and liner – a 3 or 4 season bag is recommended, depending on your trek (if it's not in your inclusions already or if you prfer to use yopur personal one).
Down jacket – need for this depends on the season and where you are going.
Kit / duffel bag – required to pack your gear in (suitcases are not suitable).
Please note: Unless you advise us otherwise we will assume you are bringing these items with you. If you need help to buy or rent them, please just let us know, we’re more than happy to help.
Other items that we recommend you take on trek:
Loose comfortable T-Shirts NOT COTTON or long sleeved shirts for sun protection
Long trousers (for cultural reasons, we request you not to wear tight pants or
shorts. If you really want to wear shorts, please make them loose fitting and long)
A warm jacket / fleece pullover
A thermal layer (shirt and pants)
A water and wind proof layer (jacket and pants)
Woollen or thermal gloves
Sun hat and sun glasses
Woollen or fleece hat
Scarf / stretchy ‘buff’
Socks – depending on the season bring either warm, woollen socks or cool, breathable cotton socks
Comfortable and worn in trekking boots
Sandals or flip flops for camp
A comfortable day pack with adjustable waist and shoulder straps
Personal toiletries - shampoo, soap, shavers, moisturizer, travel towel, etc
Ziplock bags are handy for convenient leak-proof storage
Sun block and lip balm
Dust mask/ scarf / stretchy ‘buff’ for dusty trails
Personal first aid kit + any personal medications you need to take + water treatment tablets/drops
Camera, batteries and charger, music, book
Airtight and waterproof ‘dry bags’ are great for 1) keeping your clothes dry and 2) storing your dirty
laundry separate from clean clothes!
Sleeping bag liner – either silk, cotton or fleece
WATER BOTTLES - please be able to carry 2 litres of water and have bottles that can handle boiling/hot water
HEAD TORCH and spare batteries
Your sense of humour and adventure!
What to take with you in your day pack:
Please carry the following in your day pack, as a minimum:
2 litres of water (please make sure your water bottles will take boiling/hot water)
Sunscreen, sun glasses, sun hat, lip balm, dust mask / scarf / ‘buff’ to help on dusty trails
Warm fleece or thermal layer and gloves
Water proof layer
Any money you want for snacks/drinks along the trail
CRITICAL – take any personal medications you require during the day – you will not see your kit bag until evening.
The rest you can put into your kit bag which will be carried by the porters, whom you won’t see until camp in the evening. It’s a great idea to use dry bags (ie airtight/waterproof) in your kit bag to store your dry clothes in to keep them DRY in case it rains and one to put your dirty laundry in (to keep from making everything else in your bag smell bad!).
Food on trek:
You will probably be surprised by the menu items on an MHE trek. We know how important food is, and we don't stint by giving you 2-minute noodles and Cup a Soup. You'll get real food, home cooked style. And plenty of it!
If you have any special dietary requirements, please advise us when booking your trek so that we can cater for you. Note: sometimes not all dietary requirements are able to be met, but please inform us and we will certainly do our best!
Some tips for staying healthy:
Do NOT drink or brush your teeth with tap water or untreated water!
Drink only properly boiled water or use water purification tablets, such as iodine. Bottled water is available, but as the plastic cannot be recycled we request you to consider the waste impact of your bottles – we recommend you drink boiled water or use iodine.
Your hands are perhaps your biggest enemy in terms of your health as they get very dirty during the day. Wash your hands before every meal or snack. People often think they get sick from the food, but it’s far more likely they forgot to wash their hands!
During the trek DO NOT try to test your fitness and walk too high, too quickly! Listen to your guide and take their advice as they are trained to look after your safety. Altitude sickness is a killer and you MUST take it seriously.
It is recommended that your personal medical kit includes not only your preferred painkillers, but also throat lozenges, plasters, strapping tape for blisters, etc. If you are taking regular medication you MUST bring those medicines with you PLUS an extra supply in case one pack is lost.
If you have any allergies and/or take any medications, you MUST advise us when booking your trek!
Trekking trails vary from wide, road-like avenues to narrow, slippery paths built out over enormous drops. In many places, a fall from the trail would be fatal. One must pay attention at all times to where you are placing your feet. Be especially careful not to move while looking through the view finder of your camera!
Be prepared for the weather:
Each altitude has its own weather, from tropical heat to arctic cold. In the main trekking seasons in the spring and autumn, the weather is generally stable and even the high passes may be free of snow and relatively easy to traverse at times.
Some trekkers who have encountered an easy day at altitude may spread the word that boots and warm clothing are not required. This is a mistake. Sudden storms occur at any time, dumping snow on the passes without warning. At that point, anyone poorly equipped will not be able to proceed and may even be stranded for a number of days risking their life and the lives of others.
You are heading into the worlds highest mountain range. Be prepared for changes in temperature and weather!!
Altitude and preventing Altitude Sickness
Being in a hurry in the mountains can be deadly. Acclimatization is the word used to describe the adjustments your body makes as it ascends to higher altitudes.
Ascending slowly, with appropriate rest days and drinking plenty of water is one of the best ways not to get Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS). Data indicates that drinking 3-4 litres of fluids (water, soup etc) per day to avoid dehydration helps in the acclimatization process.
You should not plan to go to high altitude if you have heart disease, difficulty breathing at sea level or are pregnant. You should consult your doctor about any known medical conditions if you are considering trekking in high altitude (over 2500m).
Avoid sleeping pills, alcohol and smoking while at altitude as they tend to decrease breathing and lead to AMS.
The first aid kit carried by your guide includes Diamox and other altitude medications and he/she is trained in the identification of AMS symptoms and their treatment. You MUST take their advice. If anything happens to your guide the first aid kit has a Wilderness Medicine handbook with comprehensive information about altitude sickness and other ailments.
When relevant, your pre-trek briefing will include information about what to expect and what to do to avoid AMS before embarking on your trek.
While all main meals are provided on trek, do not forget to bring some money for drinks or snacks that you might purchase on the way. You will be surprised by what is available on the popular trekking routes.
The amount to carry on the trekking routes depends on the area you are going to trek in, so please ask your guide for advice. Tipping is now common but there is no strict rule about how much the tip should be. Needless to say, you should only tip if you are satisfied with the service.
Photographing and interacting with local people:
During your trek you will have many opportunities to photograph local people and the amazing scenery and you will use tons of film/memory space! When you want to take a photo of a person, please ask them first and respect their right to refuse – you will be surprised how easy it is to convey the request to take someone’s photo even when you don’t share a common language!
If you have a digital camera it is considerate (and fun!) to show them their photo and if it’s possible to arrange to have copies printed and sent to them this is an amazing gift! However do not promise to do so if you are not sure you can deliver on the promise, so please talk to your guide about this! Photos can be a brilliant way to establish a connection with local people, but please respect their right to privacy.
Refrain from giving money or food to children. There are many good organisations working to help these children and we recommend you support them instead of encouraging them to beg. One other way is to collect books, pencils and other such articles and donate them to village schools you will find on your way.
Considering the Environment: There are many ways you can help to conserve the environment of the area in which you trek. Here are some simple tips.
While trekking you have to be careful not to destroy the very environment you are enjoying so much. It is not only for your enjoyment - people and wildlife rely on this environment for their drinking water and food supply and many places are of enormous religious significance to local people.
Pick up any litter along the trail.
Burn all your toilet paper and bury your faeces when not in camp, make sure you go at least 50m away from any water source.
Try and avoid making a campfire - if you must, be sure to use only fallen wood. Do not consume food cooked on wood fires.
Drink boiled/treated water instead of mineral water as the plastic bottles are a problem.
Stick to the trails to prevent erosion and damage to fragile alpine flora.
Ensure all rubbish is packed out (or burnt/buried if appropriate).
All tour participants should obtain their own personal insurance which covers medical and emergency evacuation at a minimum. You will of course also want cover for loss or damage to personal effects, flight or trip cancellation etc.