Rupin Pass trek consists of trails dug out of rock faces and wooden bridges, cut through deep dark folds in the mountain, glaciers and icy slopes, and over snow fields. Along the way there are white Rhododendrons and expanse of green meadows.
Rupin Pass trek is one such experience that all adventure lovers should indulge in. Located at an altitude of around 15250 feet, the mountain pass is in the beautiful state of Himachal Pradesh. The trek is fairly undulating, but it will allow you to be pleasantly surprised by the change in scenery at every other corner. The state itself is known for its pristine natural beauty and the trek to Rupin Pass will take you among some of the best landscapes here. Meandering rivers, dense forests and snow-clad mountain ranges make for a perfect feast for the eyes.
The last phase of the Rupin Pass trekking experience starts when you head towards Sangla. Pay attention to every scenic detail of the lushness surrounding you, so that you can forever cherish this memory. A trekking trip such as this will stay with you for a long period of time. Plan the trip to breathe in the fresh scent of mountain air, infused with sweetness of apples and apricots. A million more reasons including the chance to witness the nature in an absolute un-spoilt form will compel you to take up the challenge of this thrilling vacation.
Day 1 : Drive from Dehradun to Dhaula.
Day 2 : Trek to Aligad via Sewa village.
Day 3 : Sewa to lower Jhaka village via Jiskun.
Day 4 : Jhaka to Udaknal.
Day 5 : Udaknal to Dhanderas Thatch/Lower waterfall camp via Suruwas Thatch.
Day 6 : Lower waterfall to Rati Pheri base camp via upper waterfall.
Day 7 : Rati Pheri to Rupin pass and descent to Ronti Gad.
Day 01 : Drive from Dehradun to Dhaula – 200 Km – 10 hours
Pickup in the morning from Dehradun and reach Dhaula (~ 1550m, 5100 ft) . Distance around 200 Km and can take up to 12 hours with lunch break in between. The road is one of the most scenic in Garhwal region while we go up to the classy hill station of Mussorie at the beginning, turquoise Yamuna river in the middle and conifer forests and meandering Tons river at the later half of the journey. The major points are Mussorie, Yamuna Pool, Damta, Nawgaon, Purola, Mori and Netwar. Mori is the last place where you get a guaranteed mobile network! From Netwar onward we are inside Govind National Park area and at the Forest Check Post entries are made. We cross the Tons River and enter into Rupin valley. Dhaula is a small village with handful of homes and few home-stays for shelter. We camp for the night beside Rupin.
Day 02 : Trek to Aligad via Sewa village – 13 Km – 7 hours – camp on Rupin bed
Our trek starts today. From campsite we take wide trail and cross the Rupin for the first time. (Hence onward we will cross Rupin on few occasions till the base of the Waterfall) . After crossing the bridge Rupin stays for the day on our right side. The walk is gentle along the river valley with very low gradient. Rupin runs in the gorge some 500 ft below. One moderate climb of 30 mins takes us to the village of Datadhar. Then we traverse and encircle the mountains for couple of hours gently along Rupin to reach the village of Sewa (~ 2000m, 6550ft). The village is a small one with a tea shop and a small lodge. Wooden crafted temple in the village depicts the influence of Kinnaur culture. The Distance is 10 Km and may take up to 6 hours. There is a nice camping ground just another kilometer after the village on the bank of Rupin. After crossing a short jungle stretch we descent to the river bed and cross a side stream called Aligad. The bridge marks the boundary of Uttarakhand and Himachal. The campsite of Aligad (~ 1900m/6230 ft) is on the true right of Rupin in the state of Himachal Pradesh. It may take up to 6 ours.
Day 03 : Sewa to lower Jhaka village via Jiskun – 12 Km – 6/7 hours
From campsite we take the trail along the river and then a steady comfortable climb to hit a motor road under construction inside Himachal Pradesh. This area is under Shimla district and the motor able road on the left goes to Rohru over Changshil top. We take the wide and leveled road on our right along the Rupin to walk around an hour to get a diversion on the road. Our road is on the left towards Gosangu. Another 3 or so kilometers walking on almost flat surface and then a climb of around 500 ft takes us to the first house of the village Jiskun. A tea and noodles shop welcomes the trekkers. Skirting the entire village we cross the last stretch (marked by a cozy lodge apple orchards) and descent inside the jungle to cross a over bridge. This is a good spot to have our packed lunch. From now onward a steady climb takes us suddenly to a turn from where Rupin appears deep beneath gorge. The view of the valley is surprisingly beautiful from here and remains green throughout the year. From here we climb for an hour inside the blue pine forest to see the first glimpse of the village Jhaka. The portion of the village seen from here on a steep slope and looks like hanging on the cliff. There are couple of Home-Stays offering bedrolls and food. It may take 6/7 hours. We can either pitch our tents or stay in the Home-stay. It may take 6 to 7 hours to reach lower Jhaka (~ 2650 m/8700 ft).
Day 04 : Jhaka to Udaknal – 6 Km – 4 hours – (May proceed ahead till Buras Kandi (2 hours)
Starting from the camp site at Jhaka, we gradually climb and cross the upper part of the village and enter in to the magnificent conifer forest. Gently we loss altitude while walking through the forest and after an hour we cross the snow bridge on the Rupin river to go to the trail on the other side. We continue our trek on the boulder covered stretch to reach Buras Kandi. This trail is often used by the shepherds for grazing in summer and monsoon. A steep ascent and followed by walking along the river bed takes us to our today’s camp named Suruwas Thach (~ 3400m, 11150ft). Distance is 7 Km and may take 5 hours. Camp for the night.
Day 05 : Udaknal to Dhanderas Thatch/Lower waterfall camp via Suruwas Thatch – 6 km – 4 hours
Today we walk on almost level ground and amidst the meadows while we can see numerous cascading waterfalls feeding Rupin. The trail goes through the lash green pastures to our campsite at Dhanderas Thach/Lower waterfall camp (~3550m, 11650ft). Distance is 6 Km and takes up to 4 hours.
Day 06 : Lower waterfall to Rati Pheri base camp via upper waterfall – 5 Km – 4 hours
A small day’s trek will give us a much needed recuperation on high altitude before crossing the pass. Trail nature differs based upon the time you choose to trek. In the beginning of summer the trail is filled up with ice fields and semi hard frosty snow while in the later half after the monsoon there is hardly any snow. From the base of the water fall the ascend is steep till we reach the top. called Rati Pheri/Upper waterfall camp (~4000m, 13100ft). Distance is 3 Km and may take 2/3 hours. Camp for the night.
Day 07 : Rati Pheri to Rupin pass and descent to Ronti Gad – 8 Km – 7/8 hours (in fall move further toward Sangla Kanda)
We start early in the morning to cross the pass. From Rati Pheri the climb is steep and demanding. After an hour or so we reach the vast stretch of snow field and locate the pass above on the ridge line. We climb up slowly as the oxygen level depletes. The exhilarating climb ends at Rupin Pass (~4650m, 15200ft) and the view is mesmerising. This eternally snowbound pass puts up the snowy mountains of Kinnaur Kailash range on the northern side while the Rupin valley in the south. Spending around half an hour we startthe steep descend towards Sangla side. Again depending on the season the level of snow will be determined. After crossing the snowline the descent is sharper till we reach Ronti Gad at the starting of the green meadows (~4100m, 13450ft). Distance is 12 Km and may take 10/11 hours.
Hire a cab from Delhi to Dehradun, which takes around 4 hours. NH-72A from Chhutmalpur to Dehradun is the best route you may take. The cost of cab ranges from INR 9 to INR 97 per kilometre, depending upon the type of car. Ideal for families and groups.
Take a direct bus from Delhi to Dehradun, which takes around 6 hours. Deluxe, Volvo, semi-deluxe and ordinary Uttarakhand State buses depart every hour from ISBT, Kashmere Gate in New Delhi. There is also an overnight deluxe A/C service run by Uttarakhand Tourism. Dehradun ISBT bus stand is located about 5 km from the centre of the city. Ideal for backpackers and single travellers.
Take a direct Jan Shatabdi train from Delhi NDLS station to Dehradun railway station that takes around 6 hours. Dehradun railway station is located in the city centre. Train is the most comfortable and cost effective mode to travel to Dehradun from Delhi. Ideal for groups and families.