Difficulty

Moderate

Maximum altitude

12500 feet

Time taken

4 Days

Trekking distance

28 Kms approx

Best time to visit

Round the year

Region

Himachal

Base village

Shangarh

About the trek

Shumga is truly remote from rest of the world, as it has no network connectivity. It is, therefore, a perfect getaway for adventure seekers. The trek route begins from Shangarh village which is an epicenter of serenity and green meadows. It was also a hunting ground due to the abundance of fauna on the pasture lands. It is known for the tower temples built 100 years ago. From here itself you will start getting views of lush green plateaus surrounded by Cedar forests and endless ranges of mountains in the background. Walking towards the encircled area of the forests, make way on the well-marked trail to Lapah camp. The route from Lapah camp to Sarah Lake has variations. From pine forests to rhododendron to steep ascent, you will be amazed at every point. The nature trail goes through blossomed rhododendrons along the beautiful Saradhar ridge, later to Sarah Lake. Camping beside this lake under glittering stars will revitalize you for the summit day.

The summit trail will again show the variant color of the vegetation from pine trees to rhododendrons. Towards the end of the trail comes Alpine meadows, home of the pheasants like Monal, Tragopan, Koklash etc. The summit point is marked by the shrine of Goddess Jogni or Sati. This point lies on the ridge separating Tirthan and Sainj valleys. Lower Himalayan peaks of Banjar, Thachi, and Mandi are visible on the Southwest side. Towards Northeast, peaks of the Great Himalayan Range are visible. On a clear autumn morning, high peaks of Kinnaur and Spiti regions can also be sighted.

Major peaks seen are Gushu, Pishu in Tirth, Shupakuni, Kingkullen, Snow Peak in Rakti, Vasuki Nag, in Lahulibati.   

Day 1: Shangarh to Lapah camp

Wake up in the morning getting immersed in the wonderful scenery. You would want to relax on the grass and feel the sun rays. But get packed to experience more. The height gain up to the next campsite, Lapah is from 2200 meters to 2700 meters. You will be covering 9 km distance in 5 hours’ trek.

After 1 km walk through the forests, you will arrive at Barshangarh village. The path henceforth is a level walk between Pine trees. During winter these trees are layered with snow forming a perfect winter picture. You will cross the Lapah village to reach the campsite. It will be a steep ascent of 2 km until campsite. Your eyes will be filled with incredible views of Greater Himalayan peaks. Though the peaks are not clearly visible, it is enough to rejuvenate you. If you are lucky you might have an encounter with Black deer, Goral or Musk deer.

Day 2: Lapah Camp to Sara Lake

After peaceful sleep under forests, it is time to encounter how the forests change its colour. The trail starts from Lapah along the Saradhar ridge. The trail starts with a moderate ascent of 2 km, followed by a steep ascent of 2 km. Notice the change in vegetation from thick Pine, Fir and Spruce forests to Rhododendron and Junipers scrubs.

Towards the end of the trail you will come across Raila village. Walking a little ahead you can spot the next camp site besides Sara Lake. The lake is a tiny lake surrounded by Kharsu oak trees on the sides. The lake is dark coloured and mostly covered by leaves. Towards the northeast side you will get views of never-ending Greater Himalayan ranges. You will get enough time to roam around and capture memorable moments with the nature.

Day 3: Sara Lake to Shumga Summit Point

This is one of the easy treks having a summit day covering a total of 8 km. The trail is of moderate type so relax and just engulf the peacefulness. On this trail too you will observe the variation of greenery filled with Rhododendron and Junipers scrubs. Just as you move up the tree line ends and lavish meadows of Shumga incept. Also, you will find alpine scrubs lying everywhere. These scrubs are breeding grounds for pheasants like Monal, Tragopan, Koklash etc. After establishment of National Park Shumga attracts wildlife watchers.

Shumga summit point is obvious by prayer flags and a shrine of Jogni deity. The Goddess is believed to guide and protect the mountains. What makes the summit unique is that it lies on a ridge separating Sainj and Tirthan Valley. A 360 degree theatre opens as soon you reach the summit. Towards southwest lower hills of Banjar, Thachi, and Mandi are visible at a distance. On the other hand, Northeast side has Great Himalayan range peaks. On a clear autumn morning high peaks of Kinnaur and Spiti regions can be noticed. Look towards North for distant mesmerizing views of PirPanjal range. You will also find Beas River meandering through Kullu Valley towards West. Major Peaks seen are Gushu, Pishu in Tirth, Shupakuni, Kingkullen, Snow Peak in Rakti, Vasuki Nag, in Lahulibati. You will be having a tent stay here at night.

Day 4: Shumga to Nihari (12km, 5 hours trek)

Wake up with all the memories fresh in your mind, promising to never forget them. Another chance to relive those is on the return nature trail. The route to Lapah is the same as you came up. This will be the longest route of the entire trek. After 6 km of retracing your steps to Lapah, take a diversion to Nihari.

Another 6 km descend until Sainj river and you will reach a bridge over the river at Baha. Walk the final steps on the bridge and say the end to the Shumga trek.

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