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A guide to exploring Kedarkantha Trek

Kedarkantha Trek

Kedarkantha is a mountain peak of the Himalayas in Uttarakhand, India. Its elevation is 12,500 ft. Kedarkantha is located within Govind Wildlife Sanctuary in Uttarkashi district. The climb to the peak of Kedarkantha starts from a small village called as Sankri.


Why Kedarkantha Trek?

If you’re looking for a winter wonderland not too far from home, Kedarkantha trek is the closest thing to it! And what makes it all the more mesmerizing is the fact that you get to explore this land of awe and magic for yourself on the Kedarkantha trek. With mostly low temperatures, the Kedarkantha weather is also one of the most pleasant and inviting factors of the trek. At the astonishing height of 3,800 m (12,500 feet), the Kedarkantha peak rests in the Sankri range, Uttarkashi district of Uttarakhand. The trek to Kedarkantha takes place in the Govind Wildlife Sanctuary, and stretches over a period of five nights and six days. Thus, it is more than just an uphill journey to the Kedarkantha peak, with a view that will entrap your mind and soul for weeks to come. The sanctuary adds volumes to your experience with the beautiful and rare flora and fauna scattered around you, waiting to be discovered. You will find yourself smiling at the songs of the Himalayan monal and langoor families lounging in the tree-tops. The road to Kedarkantha is both, smooth and clean, making it one of the most pleasant drives to take in the Himalayas. It is the place to be for anyone looking to lose themselves in the midst of a snow-laden dream, with nothing but small lakes and patches of plain field breaking the view. The entire Kedarkantha trek route is studded with maple and pine trees, making it breathtaking to say the least. 

A unique treat of the Kedarkantha trek is the ability to stargaze. At night, when all goes quiet, the sky becomes radiant with stars and pulls you in. Even in the darkness, the snow glistens in moonlight. This is an experience trekkers can bank on having any time between December and April, because snowfall is one of the most reliable facets of this area. The Kedarkantha trek in December is probably the most popularly utilized package for the region, because of the abundance of regular snow. However, its magnificence is not lost on the trekkers even during the summer. The slight advantage of trekking up the Kedarkantha peak in the warmer months is that it is a little more on the easy side, as compared to a snow-covered trail. Either way, the journey uphill is absolutely delightful and once you reach the crest to find the stunning, expansive view of thirteen Himalayan peaks in front of you and the whole world below – you realize it is definitely worth all the effort and time!

 

About Kedarkantha Trek

Kedarkantha roughly translates to the “Throat of Lord Shiva”. It is a mountain 20 kms from Sankri village, standing tall at a height of 12,500 feet. A legend goes back to the Mahabharata era, when the Pandavas went to Lord Shiva to ask for his blessings after the Kurukshetra war. Lord Shiva refused to meet them and guised himself as a buffalo instead. Bheem, one of the Pandavas, noticed something strange among the herd of buffalos and refused to let the disguised buffalo pass. This led to a fight between the two. Bheem is said to have ripped the buffalo apart and the Pandavas are said to have built temples wherever parts of his body fell. Kedarkantha was apparently where his throat fell. It is also believed that Lord Shiva used to meditate at Kedarkantha, but since his deep, serene meditation was often interrupted by the cattle and surrounding fauna. This is why he left for Kedarnath. 

The Kedarkantha trek covers a total distance of 26 kilometres, and takes a period of five nights and six days to cover, making it a beautiful and adventurous way of spending a week away from the hubbub of city life. We cover a host of different places like Sankri village and Juda Ka Talab to even reach the Kedarkantha base camp, thereby creating an upbeat and constantly refreshing experience. If you are looking to get from Delhi to Kedarkantha, the first step is to reach Dehradun. The distance from Delhi to Dehradun is 258.1 km, and can be covered via bus, train, or car easily. From Dehradun, you must reach Sankri village, which is at a distance of almost 200 kilometres from Dehradun. The actual trekking experience begins Sankri onwards. The trekking distance from Sankri to the Kedarkantha peak and back to Sankri is 26 kilometres as a whole. While you don’t have to be a seasoned trekker to be able to cover Kedarkantha trek, a small period of physical exercise is both, beneficial and advised. 

The vegetation goes from dry to lush and coniferous with a rise in elevation. It is important to note that the temperature in Kedarkantha is always on the lower side here. In the summer, it ranges between 20 degrees (day) and 6 degrees (night). In winter time, it can drop as low as -10 or -15 degrees, which is why carrying multiple layers of insulation, and shoes specific to trekking are a necessity. 

Camping on the way to Kedarkantha peak is dreamlike in the lap of the snowy landscape, and a thrilling experience on its own. However, one can embark on many other activities like skiing at Kedarkantha, a relatively new feature of the area, stargazing and landscape photography. 

 

Quick Information

Kedarkantha Height: 3,800 metres (12,500 feet).

Kedarkantha Temperature: Between 6-20 degrees in the summer/Between 4 and -15 degrees during winters.

Closest Airport: Jolly Grant, well-connected airport (225 km away). 

Closest Railway Station: Dehradun Railway Station (208 km away). 

Other places near Kedarkantha: Osla village (19.4 km away), Har Ki Dun (26.7 km away), Sankri range (29.3 km away). 

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