Chadar Trek: Hike on the Frozen river of Zanskar in Ladakh

You’ve probably heard of the Chadar trek, but what exactly is it? This hiking experience is different from others because it’s completed on the frozen surface of a river.Other treks in India take you through caves, passes, and ancient forts, but the Chadar trek is different. The trail meanders along the frozen river’s route and is thick enough to walk on. You’ll spend most of your day in the wild, far away from civilization. You’ll drink butter tea every few hours, and you’ll be in remote mountain terrain. Though the trek is only a short one, you’ll enjoy seeing a new side of India.

During the Chadar trek, you’ll encounter many different types of wildlife. And if you’re lucky, you’ll get to see a snow leopard or a blue sheep.

If you’re looking for a more adventurous trek, try the Chadar trek. The Chadar route is both different and similar. The Chadar is a blanket of ice on the Zanskar River, but it’s always changing. The dynamic of the Chadar affects the route, the terrain, and the conditions. It’s worth a look if you’ve never seen this place. It is the perfect way to spend a week in the mountains.

The Zanskar River runs through the mountain range and wends its way to the Indus river. In the winter, it freezes into thick sheets of ice, creating an entirely new path for nature lovers and adventure seekers. It is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. While you’re walking on the frozen water, you will find yourself in awe of the breathtaking beauty of the Chadar region. The Chadar trail will be your ticket to the craziest part of the Zanskar landscape.

Hiring a Professional Guide for the trek

To complete the Chadar trek, you should also hire a professional guide. Despite its challenging nature, the rewards can be tremendous.  We consulted the best agent for the Chadar trek in Ladakh and completed this trek in the second week of January 2021

You can also find locals who are ready to work hard in thisregion and can help you navigate the treacherous terrain. In the past, the people of this area locked themselves in their homes and waited for the winter to pass. But now they hike through the frozen Zanskar river and you can take their help as a guide.

Difficulty Level

Chadar trek difficulty level is moderate to high. The Chadar is also dangerous, and the cold can cause hypothermia. If you don’t have warm clothing and remain in wet clothes, you can suffer from hypothermia. The terrain is slippery and you can sustain a fracture. Also, you should acclimatize for three days before starting the trek to avoid suffering from altitude mountain sickness. So, it’s a good idea to acclimate before you go on your trek.

Although it is beautiful and scenic, the Chadar frozen river is not a place to swim due to the extreme cold temperature. It is mostly a partially frozen river and can be challenging to cross. While some people get bored of the trail, others enjoy the challenge of trying something new. You can learn more about the Chadar Trek in a National Geographic film or watch it on Discovery Channel. For more information, please visit the official website.


When you’re in the mountains, you should be prepared to deal with the cold and snow. You’ll need to carry all the winter gear for the trek. And clothing to stay warm such as heavy woolens because temperatures can dip to minus 30 degrees at any time of the trek. You’ll also need to have proper medical insurance. You’ll need to stay overnight in a cave near the Zanskar River, which is not accessible for everyone.

Although this is a popular trek, it is difficult for many people. You should have a medical certificate or other proof that you’ve already trekked before.

If you’re new to hiking, you should be prepared for extreme temperatures. Wear plenty of woolen clothes and sleeping bags – it’ll be quite chilly! You should also pack a warm jacket if you’re planning on spending the night in the tents. You can buy warm clothing at the base of the mountain. If you’ve never done so before, you should check out the Chadar trek before you embark on your adventure.

Preparing for the Chadar trek

To prepare for the Chadar trek, you must have completed at least two winter Himalayan treks. If you have already completed at least two of these, you’ll need to have some mountaineering experience. You’ll also need to be fit and healthy. Besides, you need to be prepared for the harsh weather conditions. You’ll need to carry heavy woolens and other equipment. You’ll need to bring some food and drinking water.

The Chadar trek is an adventurous, yet rewarding experience. So, despite the high altitude, you’ll be rewarded with bragging rights if you manage to conquer the challenging terrain. Just be prepared to be a good citizen and take care of the environment.

The Chadar trek is not for the faint of heart. It requires a strong physical constitution and a great deal of courage. There are no easy routes, but it’s certainly worth it if you have the stamina for it. You’ll have to be able to walk through steep terrain and be prepared for some snow. Fortunately, there’s no shortage of places to rest, but you’ll need a guide.


The Chadar trek begins from the Chilling area. Then, you’ll reach Tibb cave after staying a night at Gyalpo camp. The final camping site is near the village of Nerak which is a mountain village in the middle of a steep gorge. Your journey lasts for five days, and you’ll need to make sure to pack the necessary items. You’ll need trekking boots, insulated gloves, and a day-size pack.

The Chadar trek includes three major campsites. The first is the Gyalpo camping site. You’ll stay at this campsite for one night before making your way to the next camp. The second is the Tibb Cave. From here, you’ll cross the frozen river Zanskar to the village of Nerak. After this, you’ll spend a few hours at this site. This is a great place to rest and enjoy the sights.


You’ll need to be physically fit to do the Chadar trek. You should consult with your doctor before attempting this high-altitude trek. If you’re not in good health, you should avoid the Chadar trek until you’ve reached a healthy level. This is an extremely strenuous mountaineering experience. You’ll be walking over the ice. The ice on the trail can be slippery and unsuitable for children.