Pin-Parvati Trek

Only accessible from late June to late September/early October, this strenuous but rewarding six- to nine-day wilderness trek crosses the snowbound Pin-Parvati Pass (5319m) from Barshani in the Parvati Valley to Mudh in Spiti's Pin Valley. July and August can be pretty wet so September is the best month. You'll need to be self-sufficient, and using a reputable trekking agency is wise. Organised treks are relatively pricey because pack animals cannot get across the pass so you need porters (often three per person because of the trek's length) and the crew need to be transported back to their starting point.

From Barshani (or Pulga or Kalga), the route ascends through forest and pasture to Khir Ganga hot springs and Thakur Khan. Two more days through a more arid alpine zone takes you via Pandupul rock bridge (which can be tricky when wet) and Mantalai Lake to High (or Plateau) Camp. A challenging tramp over scree and snow, requiring ropes, leads over the pass then down into the Pin Valley. A day or two extra for acclimatisation, rest or shorter stages on the way up is beneficial. The final stage can be shortened by arranging a pick-up as the last 9km to Mudh is now a driveable track.

Some prefer to do the trek in reverse, giving a rapid ascent and more lingering descent, but you'll need to be better acclimatised.

1

Route

Barshani to Khir Ganga

Duration (hr)

3-4

Distance (km)

12

2

Route

Khir Ganga to Thakur Khan

Duration (hr)

6

Distance (km)

15

3

Route

Thakur Khan to Mantalai Lake

Duration (hr)

7

Distance (km)

16

4

Route

Mantalai Lake to High Camp

Duration (hr)

4

Distance (km)

12

5

Route

High Camp to Pin Valley Camp via Pin-Parvati Pass

Duration (hr)

5-6

Distance (km)

12

6

Route

Pin Valley Camp to Mudh

Duration (hr)

8

Distance (km)

20