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Biafo Glacier Snow Lake Hispar la Trek

Created with Sketch. Skardu, Gilgit Baltistan, Pakistan
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Duration

22 days, 22 nights

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Tour Type

Specific Tour

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Group Size

16 people

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Languages

___

Overview

Traversing a region of immense diversity, Biafo Glacier Snow Lake Hispar la Trek is one of the top five walks on this planet, pass through two regions of Gilgit Baltistan, linking Shigar to Hunza valley and open up a challenging trekking trail to entire Biafo glacier reaching the zenith at Hispar La Pass (5,151m/16,900ft), whilst still preserving the region’s rich heritage.

One of the most scenically spectacular sections of the trail goes through the remote Biafor glacier Snow lake to Hispar glacier. The pristine scenery is characterized by soaring, snowy peaks including Kanjut Sar (7,760m), Distaghil Sar (7885 m.) Makrong Chhish (6,607m), Latok group (Latok I: 7,145m, Latok II: 7,108 m, Latok III: 6,949m, Latok IV: 6,456m) and Baintha Brakk/The Ogre (7,285m), green verdant valleys, dazzling blue glaciers and carpets of wildflowers in the summer months. In addition to the stunning alpine scenery. Most families still own their own cow and goats and make their own cheese and yoghurt. You will certainly enjoy wonderful locally produced and locally cooked food.

At the end of your trek, you will explore more of Hunza’s historic past on a walking tour of the town, Karimabad. Here, you can trace the country’s fascinating history and ethnic influences in the winding streets and atmospheric, crumbling buildings.

With its combination of wild, mountain landscapes, rugged trekking, cultural interest and warm hospitality, this holiday offers a superb introduction to a country that, over time, may well become known as one of the world’s premier trekking destinations.

One of the most scenically spectacular sections of the trail goes through the remote Biafor glacier Snow lake to Hispar glacier. The pristine scenery is characterized by soaring, snowy peaks including Kanjut Sar (7,760m), Distaghil Sar (7885 m.) Makrong Chhish (6,607m), Latok group (Latok I: 7,145m, Latok II: 7,108 m, Latok III: 6,949m, Latok IV: 6,456m) and Baintha Brakk/The Ogre (7,285m), green verdant valleys, dazzling blue glaciers and carpets of wildflowers in the summer months. In addition to the stunning alpine scenery. Most families still own their own cow and goats and make their own cheese and yoghurt. You will certainly enjoy wonderful locally produced and locally cooked food.

At the end of your trek, you will explore more of Hunza’s historic past on a walking tour of the town, Karimabad. Here, you can trace the country’s fascinating history and ethnic influences in the winding streets and atmospheric, crumbling buildings.

With its combination of wild, mountain landscapes, rugged trekking, cultural interest and warm hospitality, this holiday offers a superb introduction to a country that, over time, may well become known as one of the world’s premier trekking destinations.

Departure Dates 

2019 Departures

July :   5th,  10th, 15th,   25th

August : 5th,  10th,  15th,   25th

September : 5th,  10th,  15th

2020 Departures

July :   5th,  10th, 15th,   25th

August : 5th,  10th,  15th,   25th

September : 5th,  10th,  15th

Quick Facts:

Maximum Altitude: 5585 m

Difficulty Level: Difficult

Airport: Skardu, Pakistan

Starting and Ending Point: The trek starts and ends at Skardu.

ATM: Skardu Bazaar has the last ATM point.

Best Time to Biafo Glacier Snow Lake Hispar la Trek

Travelling to these giant base camps has its on-peak and off-peak seasons. For ordinary tourists, the golden season to take Biafo Glacier Snow Lake Hispar la Trek would be in June to  October. At these times of the year, the skies are clearer, with very few days where visibility is even slightly limited.

There is very little rain and snow, and daytime temperatures, while not the hottest in the year, are well above freezing, and quite comfortable for trekking and touring the region. Although, you will still need some warm clothes for the nights, which can still get quite cold.

However, Biafo Glacier Snow Lake Hispar la Trek can be arranged at any time of year, given an individuals’ unique preference. As long as you are not a professional mountaineer with a particular time frame to summit the mountain, Biafo Glacier Snow Lake Hispar la Trek welcomes you whenever you come.

Tips for Biafo Glacier Snow Lake Hispar la Trek

  • Bring enough money: There are no ATMs in valleys, so one is advised to carry enough money with them in case of need for an emergency. And even for buy trekking equipments in Skardu. It is one of the best and cheapest place to buy the same.
  • Mentally prepare yourself:As this is not an easy trek, you should prepare yourself mentally for the task that is ahead of you. This means, be prepared for extreme weather conditions, All accommodation on Biafo Glacier Snow Lake Hispar la Trek is in tents. There are limited options for showers lower down on the trail, if you decide to use them, however, many people keep clean by using baby wipes and a bowl of warm water each day. The toilet situations can be difficult at times, as in the camps they are generally not Western-style toilets, rather just a hole in the ground instead of a toilet bowl.
  • What to Carry: Warm clothes, sun glasses, trekking boots, gloves, trekking stick, woolen caps among other trekking equipments you want to carry. However, the most important thing to bring is a good pair of trekking shoes that you have hiked in previously. Skardu is a great place to buy trekking clothes that are both cheap and of decent quality. If you can bring your own sleeping bag otherwise you can rent one for about 3-4 $ a day.
  • Prepare for extreme weather: If it’s sunny you might be surprised at how warm it can get during the day. Most trekkers wear t-shirts and shorts for the first few days while the elevation is still low. When the sun sets the temperatures drop quick. Wear a warm hat while sleeping and take a Nalgene bottle filled with hot water and keep it in your sleeping bag to stay warm.
  • Stay Hydrated:Make sure to drink plenty of water while on the trek. Do carry extra water bottles with you at all times.
  • Altitude Headaches:A headache can be one of the first signs of altitude problems.  Do carry suitable medications for the same. Small headaches are common and should not stop you from trekking or worry you. However if it persists or increases, it might be advisable to ascend or even trek down.
  • Avoid the Sun:Taking care of your skin and eyes are important. Sunburns happen much quicker at high elevation so make sure to apply sunscreen a few times a day and wear a hat. Sunglasses are a must have and if you wear prescription glasses it’s good to come to Pakistan with a pair of prescription sunglasses or at least clip-ons.
  • Dress in Layers: Layering allows you to easily regulate your body temperature and stay comfortable while trekking.  It’s even better if your layers have zippers so that you have even more control of your body temperature.
  • Bring a camera: This trek is one of the most beautiful Karakorum Treks. So much so, that one would want to stop at every step and take pictures to make memories for life.
  • Bring Extra Batteries/Charging Packs:In the cold, your batteries will die much quicker than they do at home. This holds true for basically every kind of electronic you’ll be using from phones to cameras to kindles. While some of the tea houses allow you to charge things, they all charge you for it (some more than others). An easy way to avoid this is to bring spare batteries and a portable charger.

The preparation before trekking to this area should be adequate. Beside some of the few obligatory items like hiking boots, warm clothes, UV sun-block etc, there are a lot of things that you need to carry on your way ahead. A lot of stuff that you might not have considered taking along are mentioned here; these things may seem unnecessary at first but would enhance your trekking experience once you start your trip.

Read more about  Essential Trekking Kit

WHAT TO EXPECT

This trek has an activity level of maximum, and is designed for serious hikers who are very fit and have experience hiking or trekking at high elevations. During our 14-day trek, we will hike 4 to 10 hours per day on moderate to steep grades, at elevations ranging from 9,318 feet to a maximum of 18,192 feet. Some days will be rest days with optional hikes to properly acclimatize. Your trip leader will set a suitable pace to minimize risk of altitude issues. Porters and pack animals will transport our gear.  This is a strenuous grade trek and need well preparation. Read More about fitness preparation about this trek here.Trekking Fitness

 

Apart from the Ordinary.
10 Great reasons to choose Vertical Explorers Trips:
1. Beautiful Hotels, Properties, and More
We stay in some of finest properties, and where possible, we offer a choice of hotel and room categories. We carefully select prime locations that offer wonderful views, amenities, and proximity to attractions. In remote locales, we revel in knowing that we are enjoying the best accommodations available.
2. The Best Travel Experts
Our legendary Travel Experts carefully watch over the smallest details to ensure that you have a wonderful time. They also draw upon years of established V E relationships to ensure that your journey is seamlessly enjoyable and memorable.
3. Epicurean Choices Abound
We believe travel is made better by experiencing culture you can taste. Our Dine-Around program provides you with the freedom to choose renowned restaurant, an inviting neighborhood eatery, or room service at your hotel its all included.(Subject to Package)
4. Small Group Advantages
Limited to just 10 guests averaging around 7-8 our small group size sets the highest standard in personal service. Our journeys remain intimate and create camaraderie, yet allow for independence, flexibility and discovery. Along the way, we re granted access to exclusive events and stay in one-of-a-kind accommodations not available to larger groups.
5. Experts Offer In-Depth Enrichment
Expert local guides to share their experiences and insights about the cultures and places you explore.
6. The Best Wonders
We visit nook and corner of the country. We travel on aircraft, jeep, horse and legendary trains, Whatever your choice, we likely have something to fit your sense of adventure.
7. Responsible Eco Tourism Policy

Vertical Explorers is committed to adopting a responsible attitude to the areas we visit. We are guests of the communities visited and with some thought and care we can ensure that everyone benefits from the experience. We have developed a Responsible Tourism policy which aims to ensure that V E and its clients act in a way that is socially, environmentally and culturally sound. All areas of our operations are planned with responsible tourism in mind, and we require our business partners to support this vision.
8. Unforgettable Moments
Part of what makes a Vertical Explorers trips so special are the surprises and delights along the way. Unexpected doors open and lead to the kind of authentic cultural experiences that make unforgettable memories.
9. Guaranteed Departure Dates 
Plan with confidence knowing that once your deposit is accepted, your departure date is confirmed. Our journey dates are timed to take advantage of local flavors, special events, natural occurrences or simply the best weather.
10. It’s All – Not about the Money

Our prices are competitive and good value, and we offer quality, service, security and an ethical stance on tourism. We don’t want to be so expensive to run fewer trips and have our staff idle, but on the other hand we believe that running  cheap trips that promote the practice of skimming budgets would result in the porters getting next to nothing, which is something we cannot consider. Additionally we plan treks with sufficient rest days and with achievable daily altitude increases which gives good time to acclimatise. Reducing the number of days may make the price cheaper but the chances of successfully completing the trek also greatly reduce.

Besides the finest accommodations, all meals and sightseeing your escorted Journey includes:
� A professional travel Expert, dedicated and attentive to your needs throughout your journey
� Small group size that allows for personal enrichment, exclusive access and flexibility
� Our unique Dine-Around program
� Unique experiences that allow for a real cultural understanding
� Expert local guides, such as archaeologists and professional naturalists
� All the extra comforts that make sightseeing a personal experience, like a guaranteed window seat and complimentary refreshments along the way
� Itinerary can be customized build your exact dream trip. Customize My Itinerary
� Leaves any day you desire. Lengthen or shorten trip, if you like.
� Best itinerary in terms of acclimatization, enjoyment and safety with options of extensions.
� Lowest Price and best value for money –Save 40-50 % vs. comparable tours of this same quality.
� Group Discounts Available. [ Details ]

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HIGHLIGHTS

  • Trek on one of top five walks circuit straddling the borders of Baltistan with Hunza
  • Enjoy the hospitality of local families experiencing the distinctive Balti and Nagar culture firsthand
  • Have your luggage transferred each day so all you need to carry on trek is a small day sack.
  • Step back in time on a guided walking tour of Hunza,
  • Experience the warmest of welcomes and the generous hospitality of the local shepherds and farmers
  • Enjoy contrasting scenes of stark mountains, icy white glaciers, and beautiful flower-filled meadows
  • Explore a truly remote and stunning area on one of the most beautiful treks in the world
  • Make the exhilarating crossing of the Hispar La 5,151m/16,900ft
  • Dream trip can be.......Itinerary can be customized...
  • Lowest Price and best value of money --Save 40-50 % vs. comparable tours of this same quality.

Itinerary

Day 1: Arrival in Islamabad, Meet and Greet
Day 1:  Arrival in Islamabad, Meet and Greet

Welcome to Islamabad! You will be greeted by an English-speaking assistant at the airport after immigration and custom. The assistant will escort you to your hotel. We will have ample time for sightseeing and shopping in colorful old bazaars of Rawalpindi and new markets of Islamabad. We may also drive to the modern Faisal Mosque in Islamabad.

Drive: 40 minutes
Activities: Cultural exploration , Sightseeing
Accommodation: Hotel

Day 2: Fly to Skardu /Drive to Chilas
Day 2:  Fly to Skardu /Drive to Chilas

We rise early to be at the airport in time for our flight to Skardu. If the weather is good, we’ll be treated to one of the finest views available in the world of aviation, as we thread our way up the largest congregation of mountains of Karakoram, Hindukush, Himalaya and Indus River gorges, third longest in Asia and one of the deepest in the world. To our east is K2 (2nd highest in the world and Nanga Parbat (killer mountain) and countless peaks and glaciers. It is sometime possible to catch a glimpse of K2 in the distant before our dramatic landing at Skardu. On arrival we are met by our local staff with jeeps and make the short transfer to the hotel. SKARDU is the administrative capital of Baltistan and gateway to the high peaks of Northern Pakistan. We have some time to explore the town and enjoy the hustle and bustle in peak season of tourists here. Sightseeing in Skardu and surrounding areas during the day. For those seeking a good overview of Skardu, or a place from which to photograph the sunset, Kharfocho Fort is an ideal spot. If the flight is unable to operate because of bad weather, we will resort to travel by road on Karakoram Highway (KKH) to Chilas. The drive is compensated by the beautiful scenery along the Karakoram highway and Indus gorges. The journey on the Karakoram Highway is most exciting and thrilling. It is a monument to the engineering feast and one of the most spectacular roads and the world’s highest metalled border crossing. It connects Pakistan and China stretching over a distance of 1300km between Islamabad and Kashgar, winding through three mountain ranges and following the ancient Silk route along the Indus Valley to the Chinese border at Khunjerab Pass. We pass through the historical town of Taxila, beautiful hill station of Abbottabad, quake affected lush green towns of Mansehra, Shinkiari and finally meet the great Indus on Thakot Bridge. From there onward the road snails along the bank of the Indus with contrasting landscape after every two kilometers. We pass through Besham, Dassu, Komila and Shatial to arrive at Chilas with many rock carvings and inscriptions along the way left by Chinese pilgrims and ancient travelers of 5th century A.D. Chilas was on the ancient caravan trail over the Babusar Pass into India. The view after crossing the Rai kot Bridge of Nanga Parbat is without any parallel. Standing at around 1,000 m. you see a mountain which rises to above 8,000 m! This is the largest land escarpment in the world. This is also where the three greatest mountain ranges meet; Himalaya, Hindukush and Karakoram.

Flight: 45 Minutes

Drive: 10-12 hrs

Activities: Cultural exploration , Sightseeing, Hiking,Jeep Safari
Accommodation: Hotel

Day 3: Skardu free day /Drive to Skardu
Day 3:  Skardu free day /Drive to Skardu

This day may be needed to complete the KKH road journey from Chilas to Skardu. Alternatively, leaving Skardu today will enable us to enjoy an extra day of trekking.

Drive:(Chilas to Skardu) 10-12 hrs.
Activities: Cultural exploration , Sightseeing, Hiking,Jeep Safari
Meals provided: Breakfast
Accommodation: Hotel

Day 4: Jeep to Askole
Day 4:  Jeep to Askole

Today we rise early and view the beautiful sunrise against the backdrop of the Karakoram. After breakfast drive to Shigar, a history-soaked medieval town. There is also a heritage Palace cum Fort (Fong khar ). Completely renovated by the AKCSP a few years back, the Palace and its suburbs reflects a medieval look. Here we will pay a brief visit to the Garden House, Royal room, museum handicraft shop and The Khanqah Moalla, famous for its uniquely carved wooden windows and meditation cells. Shigar retains a mystical, medieval aura that may leave you feeling like you have stepped through the looking glass.Then an exciting jeep journey takes us through the fields of the Shigar valley before the road narrows to a mountain track leading to the trail head at Askole, the last inhabitancy on our way to the great glaciers. Highest in the region, the stone & timber abodes contain dark & narrow stairwells raven by gloomy, unlit alleys cluster within the embrace of the fertile terraces.

Distance: 135 Km, Drive: 07-08 hrs. Altitude: 3050 M

Activities: Jeep Safari, Cultural Exploration
Accommodation: Mobile Camp

Day 5: Trek to Jula
Day 5:  Trek to Jula

Today we leave the last inhabited village Askole. Porters are assembled to carry our luggage for the next section of the journey. For the remaining portion of our journey we rely on our porters who carry our food and equipment and sustain our expedition. After scrambling over a ridge we come across what legend says an old polo field. Passing through a rock gap we cross the Biafo glacier. The Biafo Glacier is a huge river of ice 63 km long which descends from the central peaks of the Karakoram and flows east into the Braldu valley at a point about 10 km east of Askole. After two and a half hour trek a long and uphill walk over a steep ridge along the Dumordo river. descend at Jula, (wire rope bridge supported by a wooden basket) cross it and camp beside a torrent facing the Bakhordas peak.

Walk: Distance: 19 Km, Ascent: 300 m, Descent:290 m
Time: 06-07 hrs, Grade: Moderate, Altitude: 3120 M
Activities: Trekking
Meals provided: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Mobile Camp

Day 6: Trek to Namla

After breakfast at campsite we start our trek into an incredible wilderness of ice and rocks along the Biafo glacier by an easy route. The Biafo glacier is a huge river of ice, 63 Km long, which descends from the central Karakoram peaks and flows east, into the Braldo valley.

Walk: 06-07 hrs, Grade: moderate, Altitude: 3390 M

Activities: Trekking
Meals provided: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Mobile Camp

Day 7: Trek to Mango

Today our trek follows a series of moraine ridges which run along the centre of the glacier. We trek along 3 or 4 hours until we reach a point where the glacier becomes contorted, at which point the route finding becomes quite tricky as we work our way off the glacier and up to another pleasant meadow in a green ablation valley named Mango, giving us a fantastic views down the valley and where yak herders from Askole live in summer.


Walk: 05-06 hrs, Grade: Strenuous, Altitude: 3626 M
Activities: Trekking
Meals provided: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Mobile Camp

Day 8: Trek to Baintha

We continue along the glacier on a somehow more difficult trail by working our way through a maze of jumbled boulders to reach the central moraines which provide an easier route along the centre of the glacier. Hispar pass can be viewed while walking on trail. We will establish our campsite in a grassy area dotted with bushes, very near the junction of Biafo and Baintha glaciers. May be lucky enough to spot mountain ibex at nearby crags.

Walk: 05-06 hrs, Grade: Strenuous, Altitude: 4020 M

Activities: Trekking
Meals provided: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Mobile Camp

Day 9: Baintha - Free Day

Rest day for acclimatization and contingency preparations. Optionally walk up a ridge behind camp with fine views of Latok group and The Ogre. Look out for Ibex that can often be seen grassy slopes above camp.

Walk: None
Activities: Rest /Training
Meals provided: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Mobile Camp

Day 10: Trek to Napina
Day 10:  Trek to Napina

Today walk through a crevasse d iced field, by roping up to safe-guard against hidden crevasses towards the junction of Biafo and Simgang glaciers to Napina, a grassy campsite in an ablation valley with fresh water and wild flowers.

Walk: 04 -05 hrs, Grade: Moderate, Altitude: 4400 M


Activities: Trekking
Meals provided: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Mobile Camp

Day 11: Trek to Simgang Snow Lake

This is a steady walk on snow covered ice to the Sim Gang Basecamp, closer to Hispar La. Today we get incredible views on our way, most impressive is the Sosbun Brak and Snow Lake, marking out the intersection of Biafo and Hispar glacier. The name snow lake was given in 1892 by W Martin Conway the first foreign visitors. This huge basin of snow and ice (about 9.5 Km) circled with snow-capped granite peaks, offers a breathtaking panorama.

Walk: 04 -05 hrs, Grade: Moderate, Altitude: 4780 M

Activities: Trekking
Meals provided: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Mobile Camp

Day 12: Snow Lake - Free Day

Rest day to explore the snow lake and acclimatization. Snow Lake, a vast basin of ice at 16,000 feet ringed by saw tooth peaks that explorer Martin Conway described as "beyond all comparison the finest view of mountains it has ever been my lot to behold, nor do I believe the world can hold a finer." From here treks lead to Shimshal valley as well.

Activities: Trekking
Meals provided: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Mobile camp

Day 13: Trek to Hispar La

Today we have an early start, climbing steadily towards the vast pass plateau. Today we will use our crampons and ice axe and need to travel roped together to negotiate the central section of the Hispar Glacier, where several giant crevasses exists. Then a fairly gentle climb to the crest of the pass rewards us with one of the most incredible views at campsites with stunning views straight down the Hispar Glacier to the mountains of the Nagar region. Great expanse of the Sim Gang basin and the mighty peak of the Ogre are the mesmerizing views on Shigar side.

Walk: 05 -07 hrs, Grade: Strenuous, Altitude: 5151 M

Activities: Trekking
Meals provided: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 14: CROSS Hispar La to Khani Basa

Today descending to Khanibasa again requires to be roped up from the crest of the pass. After about one hour or two the glacier flattens out and soon we leave the snow and can un-rope. The trail carries on through scree and moraines, flanked with iced-falls to reach our campsite Khani Basa, situated in an ablation valley by the Khani Basa glacier.

Walk: 05 -06 hrs, Grade: Strenuous, Altitude: 4580 M


Activities: Trekking
Meals provided: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Mobile Camp

Day 15: Trek to Jutmal

Today we cross the Khani Basa glacier and get superb views of smooth white dome Kanjut Sar at 7760 m. There are some awkward moraines to cross, and several small streams which are best crossed as early in the morning as possible before the glacial waters begin to flow. Our campsite is at Jutmal, on a flat sheltered field in the ablation valley with running water, with bushes and wild flowers in surrounding.

Walk: 05 -06 hrs, Grade: Moderate, Altitude: 4200 M

Activities: Trekking
Meals provided: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Mobile Camp

Day 16: Trek to Pumari

We cross some ice walls and crevasses along the way to Yutmaru glacier, a tributary of Hispar glacie having views of Kanjut Sar, Pumari Chish and Kunjang Chish after some walk from Yutmaru glacier. Beyond Yutmaru path follows a series of pleasant meadows with streams flowing through them. Water is needed to be filled in bottles as there is no water along the trail.

Walk: 05 -06 hrs, Grade: Moderate, Altitude: 4100 M

Activities: Trekking
Meals provided: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation:Mobile Camp

Day 17: Trek to Dashigan

Today after breakfast trek begins by crossing an awkward moraine, before we reach the confluence of the Hispar and Pumari Chish Glaciers. We cross the glacier on moraines and follow a steep path on the west side of the glacier, finally reaching our campsite at Dashigan.

Walk: 04-05 hrs, Grade: Moderate, Altitude: 3800 M

Activities: Trekking
Meals provided: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Mobile Camp

Day 18: Trek to Hispar village

This is an easy day of walking through pastures crossing a number of streams, whose water swell considerably once the afternoon snow melt has flowed into them. We cross the Kiang Glacier and have a steep climb to join the path which leads through the pastures of Daltanas and Falolingkish. Crossing several deserted dwellings we reach at Hispar Village, highest village of Nagar valley with blossoming orchards and terraced fields

Walk: 05-06 hrs, Grade: Moderate, Altitude: 3250 M

Activities: Trekking/Climbing
Meals provided: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Mobile Camp

Day 19: Drive to Karimabad Hunza valley

After breakfast descend in jeep along a bumpy road for about 2 hours until we reach the Karakoram Highway (KKH). We then turn north and drive along this great road for a while until we come to the town of Karimabad on Karakoram Highway. Towering over the green and fertile oasis of the Hunza valley are the ice ridges and peaks of one of the giants of Karakoram, Rakaposhi (7788m). In the evening we will watch sun set panorama at Duikar. Rest of the day is free to wash up, relax and explore the town.

Time: 03-04 hrs, Altitude: 2430 M

Activities: Trekking
Meals provided: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Hotel

Day 20: Morning Sightseeing in Karimabad, Afternoon drive Naran/Besham

After breakfast morning tour of Hunza including Baltit Fort & Ganesh village.
Karimabad is the delightful old capital of the Hunza Kingdom. From Karimabad, with its souvenir shop, post office and tea shop, you can obtain a magnificent view of the valley laid out below you and of the peaks behind. The Aliabad / Karimabad area is sprinkled with wild flowers and blossoming fruit orchards. We will spend half our day in these two towns enjoying the greenery and delighting in the sound of babbling brooks. We also visit Altit, Baltit and Ganish village.
Baltit fort was the old palace of the Mirs of Hunza and was inhabited until 1960. It is about 400 years old. Baltit is a curious rambling old place, four storey high, sturdily built of stones, sun - dried mud and timber. Baltit is built on a cliff edge; behind it is a ravine and then the Ultar glacier glinting in the sunshine. The architecture here reflects a Tibetan influence. The view from the top of the fort is well worth the climb.
In the afternoon we dive to drive to Riakot on Karakoram Highway as it carves a swathe through the meeting points of world three largest congregation of mountains at Shigarpa before Juglot, is an adventure in itself. Then further drive to either Naran via Babusar pass or on KKH to Besham.

Activities: Sightseeing
Meals provided: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Hotel

Day 21: Drive to Islamabad
Day 21:  Drive to Islamabad

Upon arrival transfer to your hotel in Rawalpindi. Evening sightseeing. If unable to fly on day 18th, this day will be use to transfer from Chilas to Islamabad by road.

Activities: Jeep Safari, Sightseeing
Meals provided: Breakfast
Accommodation: Hotel

Day 22: Transfer to Islamabad International Airport -Onward Flight
Day 22:  Transfer to Islamabad International Airport -Onward Flight

Transfer to Airport for onward flight

Activities: None
Meals provided: Breakfast
Accommodation: None

Included/Exclude

  • Airport/road transfer in four-wheel sightseeing jeep/Car
  • All road transfers by chartered private vehicles.
  • Best tourist class hotels accommodation with ensuite bath (twin sharing basis)
  • Locally sourced fresh meals during trek including tea and coffee.
  • Morning bed tea on trek
  • Some supplementary snacks on trek
  • Evening fill of your water bottle with boiled drinking water.
  • Sleeping tents (twin sharing basis), mattresses, kitchen tents, mess tent with table and chairs.
  • Kitchen equipment, crockery, fuel, cooking, camping, cleaning and related gear.
  • Services of experienced professional English speaking guide, expert cook and low altitude porters.
  • Staff food, insurance and equipment
  • 13 kg of personal baggage during trek.
  • Porterage at airport and hotels, toll taxes and parking fee etc.
  • Central Karakoram National Park Entrance fee
  • Camping sites fee, Bridges crossing fee
  • Insurance of crew; i.e. guide, cook, porters/staff.
  • Safety rope and basic necessary gear.
  • First Aid Kit with necessary medicines
  • International airfare.
  • All meals in hotels.
  • Excess weight.
  • Excess days beyond the itinerary
  • Sleeping bags and personal nature clothing/equipment.
  • Extras at hotels like bottled water, aerated and alcoholic drinks, laundry, phone calls.
  • Satellite phone with solar charger (can hire).
  • Insurance liability and other under force majeure conditions, medical aid and helicopter rescue coverage of members etc.
  • Hire of sleeping bags/gloves and down jackets.
  • Tips.
  • Airport and departure taxes.
  • Hotels- early check-in and late check-out.
  • Charges incurred due to delays beyond control of VE
  • Cost incurred from early leaving the trip.
  • Travel Insurance of member.
  • Visa.
  • Any other service not mentioned above.

Tour's Location

Created with Sketch. Skardu, Gilgit Baltistan, Pakistan

FAQs

How is Gilgit Baltistan as a destination? Which places can we see in winter?
Gilgit Gilgit Baltistan is a beautiful destination. So much so, that one should definitely plan a visit to this cold desert as a bucket list check box. With beautiful lakes and treks to offer, Gilgit Gilgit Baltistan is a must-visit place to go to. In winter, the temperature in Gilgit Gilgit Baltistan drops down severely and becomes even more picturesque. One can visit the frozen lakes, if not the Baltoro trek, one can do the trek on the Shigar, Khaplu valleys, visit Gilgit Gilgit Baltistani festivals that help you interact with the locals as well.
How difficult is it to walk on the frozen Baltoro glacier?
This activity is largely famous among the avid travellers. The beauty of this region attracts a lot of visitors, but its harsh and deserted environment is quite demanding. On a Baltoro trek, you would meet the locals and understand their way of living in one of the most uninhabitable regions in the world. The Baltoro trek is an experience for the brave-hearted and thrill-seekers. The weather and terrain might shake your confidence, but if you can surpass that then the journey to this land will be the most enriching experience of your life.
Can K2 base camp Baltoro be my first Trek?
Once you have acclimatized, you should not have any high altitude related problems on this trek. Next, the trek is not very rigorous. You do not have to be super fit to do this trek. This trek is all about preparing to deal with cold temperatures. If one’s physical stamina is equipped to do long walks and you’re reasonably fit, then you will enjoy the mesmerizing scenery during this trek, if not it can be prove to be a challenge. Keeping all this in mind, yes, Baltoro can be your first trek.
Can trek leader / operator change the itinerary?
We usually love to stick to the regular plan. But we always keep a B-Plan ready! Yes, depending on the prevailing situation we can change the itinerary. However the date of trek completion will always coincide with the original itinerary. We should keep in mind that this trek is happening into the remotest region, where many unforeseen events may contribute to the need for a change in itinerary. In such cases, we or your trek leader will suggest the best alternative similar to your original itinerary.
Do you think i should bring some medicines along with me while on the trek?
Yes, it is always advisable that in any trek carry your own personal medication and basic first aid kit with you. No need to worry!
What about medical facilities and doctor while on trek?
Our trek leaders are expert in first-aid and are aware of high attitude problems. We carry complete first-aid kit, oxygen cylinders, improvised stretchers,necessary medicines (relating to AMS) and extra team members with us may it be any contingency.
Is drinking water safe during the trek?
Glacier water is naturally clean but for safe side we use boiled water and chlorine tablets in our camps, it is requested by all the participants to consult our outdoor team before filling up there water bottles during the trek. Hot water is made available for drinking while on the trek. Travelers should also carry chlorine tablets with them.
Is it possible for me to store extra clothing that i will not need?
Yes, if you have a small bag of extra clothing for when you return from the trek, you will be able to store it safely in Islamabad or Skardu for the duration of the trek.
What type of food is served during the trek? can you accommodate a vegetarian diet?
All of the meals served on Our trips are a combination of the best local and regional fares along with some specialty items. Lentils and rice is a common local dish. There will be a variety of hot and cold options for breakfast (porridge, cereal, eggs and bread). Dinners are a mix of pastas and dumplings, chicken, a variety of vegetables, soups and rice dishes. Lunches are often picnic style and various items for and fruit as well as hot tea are provided. Our cook staff is very accommodating to various dietary needs. Let us know before your trip of any dietary restrictions and we will be happy to accommodate your needs.
How many trekkers will be sleeping in one tent?
We have three men tents but two people will be accommodating in one tent. Also it maintains the temperature required to have a warm and comfortable sleep in the night
I am the solo female in trek, is it safe?
Yes, our first priority is to create a safe environment for all the trekkers, and a girls’safety is the foremost important thing for us. At the time of Rooms/Tents allotment the boys and girls are segregated in different accommodations. We always create a friendly environment between trekker's and other supporting staffs are carefully chosen for your trips keeping all safety measures in mind. But we would also advise you to take care of your own personal belongings.
Which type of shoes should i use?
Trekking shoes is one of the most important things needed in any trek, so you have to be very careful before buying it. Recommended only high-ankle and waterproof shoes which are branded and are specifically designed for trekking purposes.Quechua, Zamberlan, Lafuma, Conquest and The North Face are some high quality brands dealing in High Altitude trekking shoes
Do we need a walking stick on baltoro trek?
The choice is yours if you want a walking stick or not. But it is always more comfortable with a trekking pole. Also a trekking pole will help you make firm steps and help you grip on slippery grounds.
What do i need to bring?
What do i need to bring?
A complete clothing and equipment list specific to your trip will be sent to you in a dossier. Every year, after assessing feedback from our clients and guides, we review and update our lists so they are as complete and up-to-date as possible. Every list has a description of each item, however feel free to call us if you have questions or need help locating any of the items on the list. It is extremely important that you adhere strictly to the equipment list.
Will my trip have an equipment check?
Typically, we don’t have equipment checks for international trips until you are in-country, and you can’t always count on finding an outdoor supplier in Skardu during the days just before a trip begins that has what you need. Therefore, it’s extremely important you follow the equipment list guidelines and bring every item on the list. If you have any questions concerning any of the items mentioned in the equipment list, please contact us.
Can i rent my gear through Vertical Explorers?
We may be able to procure some items in Skardu. Call us for specific information regarding your trip.
How heavy will my pack be?
Your K2 Base Camp Trek will be a fully supported trek with porters and pack animals. You will be carrying a daypack on trekking days, which would contain snacks, camera, water and extra clothing.
What is the average temperature during the trek to k2 base camp?
The trips get progressively warmer from March through May. Day time temperatures can be in the 25 to 30s (Celsius scale) when the weather is calm and clear. Night time temperatures at the higher elevations may be below freezing upto -20 Cs, especially if the weather is windy. You might expect a little bit of snow at the higher elevations and temperatures in the 20s. Temperatures during the fall season are a bit colder and you may see more snow near the trail.
Can i request single accommodations?
All accommodations are based on double or triple occupancy. If you are traveling solo and wish to share accommodations, we will pair you with another traveler of same gender. Singles are available in Skardu. If you request single accommodations or a roommate cannot be assigned, you will be responsible for paying the single supplement fee.
Can we customize trips?
We loves to customize personal trips -- for you, your friends, or organization. Our published land costs are typically based on number of individuals, so the number in your party may affect your land costs. Just give us a call/contact us and let us know what you're interested in, and we'll do our best to Make It Happen.
What if i want to arrive earlier or depart later than the trip dates?
We are happy to help you arrange accommodations before and after your trip. Our area directors can recommend side excursions and restaurants for the extra time.

Who will be picking me up and where?
Our guide or representative will pick you up at the airport on the scheduled arrival date. We can help you arrange accommodations if you arrive earlier, and we are happy to make suggestions for transportation, restaurants and sightseeing.
Who will my guide be?
All of our guides are highly skilled experienced professionals who have been selected based on their careful judgment, local knowledge, understanding of our client's needs, patience and supportive guiding styles, and great personalities. In addition to their impressive personal achievements in the field, our guides bring a wealth of natural history, cultural anthropology and linguistic knowledge for their group's enlightenment. Our international guides and staff surpass the needs of our clientele and make the trip enjoyable beyond expectations.
what if someone on my trip feels sick or wants to stop?
During a trek, if someone becomes ill or feels that they do not wish to go any farther, the guides decide whether the person requires an escort for descent (by a local staff or assistant guide) or if he or she can stay put until the group returns.
Should I tip my guide?
Tipping is always a personal choice, but is greatly appreciated by your guides. Check your departure packet for details.
Will i be able to interact with the locals on the trek?
Absolutely! Our recognizes our trips as physical, scenic, and cultural odysseys into these landlocked regions, and so we encourage you to interact with the locals. Our guides are experienced in the proper cultural courtesies and will be able to advise you along the way regarding these considerations.
Reserving a trip: how quickly do the trips fill up?
There is no way to know how quickly our trips are going to fill up. Many of our trips fill up months in advance. So send in your application and a deposit as soon as you have decided which trip date you want.

How do i sign up for a trip?
You can sign up for the trip directly on our website. To secure your place on this trip, please click on the BOOK NOW button at the side of the page, or the dates tab to the right. You will also need to have the below information to hand:
• Name as per Passport
• Home Address
• Email Address
• Telephone Number
• Date of Birth

Before you embark on your trip, it is essential that we receive your passport, travel insurance, next of kin, medical details and dietary requirements (if applicable). If you have any medical conditions to declare or are over the age of 65, you will be required to complete a medical declaration form, signed and stamped by your GP. If you don’t have all this information to hand, you can still register your place today, and then re-log into the form before you depart by using your email address and the password you create upon registration.
What is the deposit amount to hold my space?
US$300 for scheduled trips. An application alone won’t reserve a space.
What happens if VE has to cancel my trip?
If we cancels a trip due to any reason, you will receive a full refund.
Do i need to purchase trip insurance or evacuation insurance?
We highly recommends the purchasing of trip cancellation, travel insurance and medical evacuation policies. Once we have received your application and have confirmed your spot on a trip, we will send you information about the various types of insurance and insurance companies we would recommend.
How shall I get in shape for my K2 trek?
Being in good cardiovascular shape is the key. We encourage you to walk steps and stairs each day as the best conditioning before you depart. If you work out at a gym, focus on the StairMaster although walking actual stairways is probably more effective for your overall training.

For those of you who are already in great shape – trail runners, marathoners and triathletes – you should know that while you’re in great shape physically, you won’t have much advantage to those in your group who aren’t when it comes to acclimatization. You won’t be able to ascend any faster than the group. Whatever your level of fitness, you should adopt the mantra: Trekking is about the journey not the destination… and remember that we take it slowly to properly acclimatize. Read more about How to get fit for a trek?
What is a typical day like?
A normal day starts with your guide knocking at your door at around 6:00 am in the morning. The breakfast served in the dining tent is usually at 7:00 am allowing you enough time to wash up and pack up. The trek normally begins at 8:00 am. You will be accompanied by your guide and a porter. In average, 3-4 hours of walking is covered before lunch. Lunch will be at a tent en-route. After lunch, normally 3 more hours are covered before reaching the destination of the day. Dinner in the dinning tent is around 7:00 pm before retiring for the night.Acclimatization days are built in along the way where we stay at the same place for an extra night. During this day, you are welcome to explore side hikes.
Who will I be traveling with?
We have taken trekkers ranging in age from 18 to 78 as high as Gondogoro La (5585m). Our trekking groups are limited to a maximum of 12 members to guarantee quality and personalized service. Small group travel fosters intimacy with the local cultures and the land and ensures quality for each trip member. Our guests come from a remarkable cross-section, ranging from full-time students to physicians, business executives, computer programmers, stay-at-home moms (and dads), writers, etc. In addition, your trekking entourage includes a staff which will number approximately 1:6 . Along the way, your trekking staff will introduce you to their family and friends putting you on a first name basis with tea shop owners, traders, porters, farmers, schoolteachers, and curious children.
Is it safe to travel in the Karakorum region?
The incidence of personal violent crime is certainly almost none despite sensational headlines and occasional saber rattling. The Karakorum region is known for centuries of peaceful coexistence.

The incidence of personal violent crime is certainly almost none than in anywhere in the world despite sensational headlines and occasional saber rattling. The Karakorum region is known for centuries of peaceful coexistence.

we have continued to operate trips in the region each year and we are confident that these regions remains one of the most beautiful, compelling and welcoming places on earth.
The major concentrations of troubles are in the western parts of Pakistan and 100s of miles to the Islamabad. Their major concentrations are in areas which have had little or no tourism (investment, hard currency, etc) which is one of the reasons that their message has played well in these very poor districts. By comparison, the K2 Region is a very well and worldly part of Pakistan.
That said, whenever you travel in Pakistan (or anywhere in the world for that matter), you should definitely use personal caution. We avoid any known dangerous situations. We monitor political situations posted by the government Office and ground reports from our staff and network of contacts. As when traveling in any region, make sure to keep an eye on your possessions and take certain common-sense measures to prevent theft or dangerous situations.
The first rule of trekking K2 Base Camp is to step to the wall side when you meet a mule, since otherwise you can be knocked off the edge.
The main danger for most people doing the straight-in, straight-out route is altitude sickness(AKA Acute Mountain Sickness or AMS). For most people, this can be avoided by sleeping no more than 300 metres higher than you did the night before and taking an acclimatisation day every 1000 metres. Serious AMS is more common in folk doing group tours than in independent trekkers.
Other common injuries are twisted ankles and sprains. Rock falls, moraine and glacier crossings add significant risk to longer treks involving crossing high passes such as the Gondogoro-La. As always, it’s unwise to trek solo in case you fall and can’t extricate yourself: Do note, that it is illegal to trek solo.
What happens if I get Mountain Sickness?
Most people report that they have some mild symptoms of Mountain Sickness ranging from headache to sleep apnea to loss of appetite above 12-14,000 feet. While these symptoms are not of great concern, they are monitored closely by the Expedition Manager and staff. If symptoms become more serious, there are two options:

Descend to a lower elevation – possibly resuming the trek once symptoms subside.
or airlift.
Food — What snacks you’d recommend bringing?
For snacks, we recommend chocolate, chocolate bars, dried fruit bars and dried fruit which are readily available in Skardu, but Cliff bars, Power bars and the like are not usually available.
Do you recommend bringing my own sleeping bag and trekking poles?
Sleeping bags can be hired at US$ 3.50 per day basis. However, in terms of hygiene, we recommend the guests to bring their own sleeping bags. Trekking poles can be hired in Skardu, but the cost will be the same as that of buying a new one.
What do you recommend for med evacuation?
Trekkers need to have traveling insurance which covers the comprehensive expenses that might incur due to medical issues or accidents. This includes air ambulance, helicopter rescue, and medical treatment costs. In worst cases, we can evacuate / rescue you via helicopter, but this can be very expensive without travel insurance.
What is the recommended age and denomination of USD bills?
There is no specific age of USD bills, however, we recommend the guests to carry new crisp bills when traveling. All denominations are acceptable, however, it is easier if you have smaller denominations of 5’s, 10’s and 20’s.
Can i drink the tap water ?
Pakistani tap water is not safe to drink. Bring water purifying tablets or a water purifying stickto save money and the environment. Note that at higher elevations during the coldest times of year the water will freeze, so you’ll need to use boiled water.Buy a decent thermos flask or plastic water container, so that you can top up with hot, boiled water at the beginning of the day – starting with hot water will stop it freezing.
Will My Travel Insurance Cover Me for the K2 Base Camp Trek?
Check the terms and conditions of your travel insurance very carefully before embarking on the K2 Base Camp trek – the elevations involved are above 5000m, and many companies simply will not cover you at that level. World Nomads offers cover for trekking up to 6000m on recognised routes like K2 Base Camp and the gondogoro and hispar Passes.
You should also ensure you are covered for helicopter evacuation from the mountains in emergencies, while mountaineers should arrange cover with their specialist mountaineering association at home before they travel.
can I extend my trip ?
Yes – why not stay on and explore more of what Pakistan has to offer! We can request with to change your return date with the airline. Places are limited and all arrangements are subject to availability.
How is VE able to offer such competitive prices?
Our unique style of off the beaten track, face-to-face travel is the only way to really experience a destination, but it also serves to keep the costs down. We spend your money providing an authentic experience, instead of on lavish hotels and expensive western-style meals. We pass these savings on to you with our low prices. Another thing you'll notice are the inclusions. While we don't include everything, we do throw in the major highlights of a destination, the things that everyone goes to see. On every trip page we show you the 'Included Highlights' of your trip, things that many other companies charge locally for. We leave many other activities as options, to provide you the freedom and flexibility to choose what you want to do on a daily basis.

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