The mesmerizing beauty of Himachal Pradesh is the stuff of poetry and the Pin Valley Trek flagging off from Phulga Village of Kullu and concluding at Mud in Spiti offers the best kind of exposure to the dreamy quality of the state. Classified as moderately challenging, The Pin Parvati trek in the first half will cruise trekkers through apple orchards, unending grasslands of wildflowers and untamed shrubbery, the quaint Parvati Valley upon which silence lay still, and the gurgling Parvati River relentlessly flowing by. Soon, veering beyond the treeline, the yellow ochre topography of Spiti’s deserts will engulf the scenes. The bareness and contrasting colorscape of Spiti is as visually striking as it is enchanting. More interestingly, the transition of landscapes on this trek is matched well with the transition of cultures too, from Hinduism to Buddhism. From a visit to the mythologically entrenched site of natural hot spring at Kheerganga which is said to have healing properties due to the Lord Shiva’s grace, to crossing treacherous rocky bridges and the soaking in the aura of the feisty mountain rivers, there’s just so much on the cards for Pin Parvati Trekkers!
A high mountain pass in Himachal Pradesh, located at a towering height of 17,380 feet, Pin Parvati was discovered by the British in India in search of an alternate route to Spiti Valley. This route connects the green and fertile Parvati Valley on the side of Kullu with the oasis-like verdant Pin Valley on the side of Spiti’s cold desert. The itinerary marks Phulga village at 9498 ft as the beginning point for the first day’s hike and ascends to Kheerganga. Snow-clad mountains surround the route from here as trekkers move further now to the meadows of Tunda Bhuj. Sub-alpine forests of pine, silver birch, and rhododendrons are common around the meadows here where you can find sprinkles of wildflowers at your feet, lots of birds, and exquisite, colorful berries growing in the bushes. Next, the more challenging stretches of boulder crossings and the very treacherous Pandu Pull crossing, calling for all your attention and will. Around day 5, trekkers reach the origin of the Parvati River- quite a wonder in itself, and the amazing visuals continue as trekkers journey further on, fording a handful of gurgling streams the day next and get the first glimpse of the Parvati river glacier. There’s a thrill overloaded camping by the glacier awaiting around day 6, the nights are dreamily starry by getting colder by the night! On reaching Wichkurug Thatch on day 8, trekkers will be sufficiently foraying into the cold deserts of Spiti. From here till our concluding point at Mud is a near level-walk by the river. A word of caution for trekkers: take ample precaution against frostbite and altitude sickness coming on!
The Pin-Parvati Pass is located at 17,380 ft. The trek begins from Phulga village located at 9498 ft and proceeds to 13353 ft at Mantalai Lake, on to Pin Parvati Pass Base Camp at 16, 207 ft, climaxing at the high pass and then descends to 11, 482 ft at Wichkurung Thatch on the other side in Spiti.
The ripest time to snow trek to the high pass are the early months, snow will probably be melting by August. During late June and July, the Kullu-Manali zone remains swept up in the rains and the trek itinerary might be badly affected. During September and October, the nights are going to be bitterly cold, though trekkers can enjoy clear skies in the daytime for sure.
Nearest Airport: The airport nearest to Manali is Bhuntar Airport in Kullu. The airport next nearest is Chandigarh International Airport.
Nearest Railway Station: Joginder Nagar Railway station is the closest railhead to Manali, from where trekkers can be picked up. Other railway stations nearby are - Chandigarh and Pathankot.
By Road: Major cities in North India, like Delhi, Ambala, Chandigarh, Dehradun, Haridwar, Shimla Dharamsala, and Chamba/Dalhousie are connected by road with Manali. You can also find buses run by the Himachal Pradesh Tourism to Manali on these routes.
Are There Any Shops Available On the Pin Parvati Trek?
There are not any utility shops to be found after Pulga village until trekkers reach Mud in Spiti.
Altitude Sickness among the lesser experienced trekkers is a legitimate threat. One can prepare with adequate prior fitness training to ward off its chances, or take a course of Diamox on medial consultation, when starting the journey from sea level. For proper acclimatization, eat healthy, stay active in the day, sleep deeply during nights, and choose itinerary with a trekking company that allows enough acclimatizing time on the trek.
The Pin Parvati Trek being steeply challenging, is not opted for my many people. However, you will find moderate traffic on this route during September-October.