20 Days 19 Nights
Mt. Satopanth is the second highest mountain in the Gangotri group of mountains in Uttarakhand. At 7075 M, this peak which in local dialect means “True Path”, is quite a daunting expedition. The route includes a complex glacier approach, high angled snow slopes, and a technical knife-edge ridge, before the final section to the summit. This expedition is meant only for aspiring mountaineers with prior knowledge of the use of ice axes, crampons, roping up procedures and jumar climbing. The extremely unpredictable weather conditions and a challenging terrain encountered while undertaking this expedition demands the aspirant to be extremely physically fit with a high level of mental endurance. Mt. Satopanth serves as a preparatory expedition for many Indian mountaineers who wish to conquer 8000M+ peaks and possibly Mt. Everest. This expedition perfectly transitions a mountaineer from trekking to peaks to climbing summits. The best time to undertake this expedition is in August and September. Mt. Satopanth is the ultimate choice for those mountaineers who have already scaled 6500M+ peaks and are looking to push their limits. Stay on this page to get details on Mt. Satopanth expedition such as itinerary, eligibility criteria for this expedition and FAQs.
Today we will pick you up from Uttarkashi and drive from Uttarkashi to Gangotri. Stay at Gangotri for the night
Rest and acclimatisation at Gangotri.
We start in the morning, after breakfast to trek towards Chirbasa (3600 m). From Gangotri you may move along the beaten track towards Chirbasa, which is on tree line. The entire trek till Chirbasa is along the roaring Bhagirathi River. We can have our pack lunch in Chirbasa. From Chirbasa, we trek further to Bhojwasa today. The trek is going to be moderate for the day. The terrain, after Chirbasa, becomes really desolate and barren. In fact, it has been referred to as Arctic Tundra by many trekkers. Entire trail passes through dense forest till Bhojwasa. There is a small temple and a potential campsite near the river. Good place to camp for the day. Excellent sunset on Bhagirathi group of peaks to delight you in the evening.
Early in the Morning enjoy the panoramic view of Bhagirathi group of peaks. After breakfast trek to Gomukh (3890mt), the source of the Ganges. Gomukh is where the water of Ganga trickles down from the glaciers. The sages called it 'Gomukh', because in the distant past, it probably appeared like a cow's mouth. Explore the area and trek to Tapovan, one of the finest high altitude alpine meadows in the area. The trek from Gomukh to Tapovan is ascent steep, and as we climb, the view of the surrounding peaks becomes clearer. Tapovan known for its beautiful meadows that encircle the base camp of the Shivling peak, Tapovan is a very pleasant surprised spot with a large meadow complete with bubbling streams, wildflowers and campsites. Herds of Bharal (blue mountain goats) are a common sight from here on mountain ridges. On the far side of the glacier the Bhagirathi I, II, III (6454mt), provide an equally impressive backdrop. It is also the little wonder where Sadhus and saints choose this spot for extended meditation during the long summer month. Arrive Tapovan and camp. Dinner and overnight stay in camp.
On this day we start early & head to the great Meru Glacier. After a brief halt to explore Meru Glacier, we trace back to Nandanvan via Gomukh glacier. The route from Tapovan leads from the upper section of the meadow till down and onto the glacier. From Gomukh turn towards Nandanvan (4340m) and steering on right one will be on top of the Gangotri glacier. The glacier runs between two ranges and the landslides make a layer of rocky moraine on the ice which makes the walking easier. The glacier walk is very slippery and a slight lack of concentration would be dangerous. Huge crevasses gaped here and there. After a walking for about a kilometer there is a vertical ascent. Big rocks enroute offer grips and foot - holds but many of them are deceptive too. Dinner and overnight stay in tents.
Morning trek along with Chaturangi Glacier to reach Vasuki Tal, a beautiful base for Mt Satopanth and Mt Vasuki Parbat with a small lake. The trek is steady upward.
Rest and acclimatisation at Vasuki Tal
We walk on a narrow ridge, with the curiously named Chaturangi glacier on the left and Vasuki Parbat on the right. Just at the edge of the ridge, we get a glimpse of the majestic Satopanth. From here we descend to the Sundar glacier, and after a long moraine walk we reach Camp 1.
Rest and acclimatisation at Camp 1
The technical climb starts today. After a short walk on the glacier for about an hour and half, we negotiate a rock band and then an ice gully. From here we traverse a couple of gentle humps to reach camp 1. We would be using ropes for this section and ascenders as well.
Rest and acclimatisation at Camp 2
After a short steep walk, we reach the infamous “knife ridge”. We would have ropes fixed on this part as well. Progress is slow on this section, so work on your calves while you still can. Once we are through with the ridge, we are on the steep icy face of the mountain. We set up camp just above a hanging glacier.
Rest and acclimatisation at Summit Camp
We normally start the summit attempt around midnight so we are up on the summit early enough. It depends a lot on the weather conditions on that day. All climbers will need to be well protected for the cold conditions on the summit night. We normally have fixed ropes only on certain sections on the summit day as the gradient is not very steep on the south face leading to the summit. The summit offers great views of the Garhwal Himalaya on the south and the Tibetan plateau on the north. Sometimes, the summit attempt is also made from C2.
Retrace your route back to Camp 1
Return to Base Camp
Return to Nandanvan
Return to Chirwasa
Return to Gangotri. Drive back to Uttarkashi. Overnight in hotel.
Uttarkashi to Dehradun
Note: – (The Itinerary is flexible and keeps extra days in it, in case the weather changes.)