The Sunderdhunga Valley Trek is a moderate to difficult 09-day trek in the Kumaon Region of Uttarakhand. Located on the border of the Nandi Devi Sanctum and a part of the Nanda Devi National Park, the trek is as beautiful as it is remote. The trek itself begins from the same point as the Pindari Glacier Trek; Kahrkia and over the course of 07 days you cross remote Himalayan villages, rich biospheres and majestic views of some of the most spectacular Himalayan Peaks. The highest point of the trek is Devikund Lake, a high-altitude lake at 4415 metres.
While on the trek, you’ll be staying in a combination of forest guest houses and tents. At Jatoli and Kathaliya, accommodation will be in the forest guest houses which are basic but clean rooms. After Kathaliya, accommodation will be in tents on a double sharing basis.
The trail starting from Kahrkia begins with a descent to the bottom of the valley and then a climb to the picturesque village of Jatoli. The 03-hour climb to Jatoli is tough and will test your fitness. From Jatoli, we follow the forest trail as it makes its way through the forest, some streams and eventually a gradual descent to the moraine field at the bottom of the valley. We follow this field for a couple of hours before another steep climb to Katheliyan. The next day we head back to a different valley floor to make our way to Sukhram Caves. The climb up to Devikund Lakes begins from Sukhram Caves and is one of the hardest days of trekking. From Devikund Lake, you get up close to Maiktoli, Panwalidwar, Tharkot and Nanda Kot, all 6000-metre peaks in a radius of 10 kilometres from you.
This trek is recommended for individuals with some trekking experience and a good level of fitness. This trek is not for beginners. The significant altitude gain, steep terrain and long days of trekking make it a moderate-difficult trek. This is also what makes it less popular than Pindari Glacier Trek and Kafni Glacier. Thus, if you are looking for a trek away from the crowds with access to stunning views of Maiktoli, Panwalidwar, Nanda Kot and Nada Devi, this is the trek for you.
Read more about the trek here: The Sunderdhunga Valley Trek: The undiscovered valley of Uttarakhand
Best Time : August, September and October
Duration : 09 Days
Max. Altitude : 4415 Metres
Commences At : Kathgodam/Pantnagar
Ends At : Kathgodam/Pantnagar
The Sunderdhunga valley is located in the Kumaun region of Uttarakhand. One has to drive through Nainital, cross Almora and towards the town of Bhageshwar to get to Sunderdhunga valley. Geographically, its situated towards the southern tip of the Nanda Devi sanctuary and towards the west of the famous Pindari glacier. The trek starts from the same place as the Pindari glacier trek, which is the village of Kharkiya . Earlier this trek used to start from the little village of Lohakhet, but now the road has been extended and the road head is Kharkiya . The nearest train station is Kathgodham railway station which is about 155 Km’s from Bhageshwar and the nearest airport is Pant Nagar Airport which is approximately about 185 Km’s . One can also drive from Delhi with an approximate 9 hours of driving time.
The Sunderdhunga valley trek can be categorized as medium-grade difficulty. The maximum altitude we reach on this trek is about 3500 meters to Balooni top. To draw a comparison, the Leh airport is located at 3200 meters and the famous Namche Bazaar on the Everest base camp is located at 3400 meters. A couple of days requires long days of walking and decent height gain and a few days are short and relatively easy. One requires reasonable levels of fitness, read more about the fitness plan in our fitness plan section.
Perched deep in the Kumaon region of Uttrakhand - The Sunderdhunga valley is a less frequented, pristine trekking spot in the Kumaon, you will hardly find any trekkers here and the valley is absolutely virgin and unexplored. “ Sunderdhunga “ – literally meaning beautiful stones is home to several 5000 & 6000 mts Himalayan peaks, most of which aren’t on the commercial climbing map yet. The Sunderdhunga valley starts from 3200 mts and the glacier typically starts upwards of 4800 mts . It's an interesting geographical feature forming a trio of three glaciers – Pindari, Sunderdhunga and Kafni almost adjoining each other. Some of the famous peaks in the Sunderdhunga valley are – Mrigthuni – 6856 Mts , PanwaliDwar – 6663 meters, Maiktoli – 6803 mts , Tharkot – 6100 mts , Bhanoti – 5645 Mts , Durgakot – 5800 mts.
The Sunderdunga valley trek is a complete camping format trek. Adventure Pulse prioritises safety and comfort for all its clients. The camp comprises of good quality weatherproof sleeping tents ( on a double sharing basis ) , a dining tent for meals, separate toilet tents for ladies and gents and a kitchen tent for preparation of meals. Comfortable mattress and sleeping bags are provided on the trek. Single tents are available at an extra cost.
All the meals are healthy and fresh. They are prepared fresh before every meal at the camp kitchen. The meals are mostly Indian, things like eggs and porridge for breakfast, Rice – Dal, vegetables and Roti’s for lunch and similar for dinner. In addition, hot water, tea, coffee and hot chocolate are served regularly with all the meals.
Since the Sunderdhunga valley trek is a little remote, there is no network available on the way.
The best season to do this trek is through March – April – May – June, pretty much the entire summer till the onset of the monsoon. And then post-monsoon in Oct – Nov. The trek can also be done in February as a winter trek to experience snow. The Balooni top flowering season is typically April & May.
Balooni top, located at about 12,500 feet is a beautiful meadow located in the Sunderdunga valley. It’s a 2-day trek from the village of Jatoli and a one day trek from the campsite of Katheliya. Balooni top offers some of the best views of the Sunderdunga valley with mountains like Mrigthuni – 6856 Mts, PanwaliDwar – 6663 meters, Maiktoli – 6803 mts, Tharkot – 6100 mts, Bhanoti – 5645 Mts, Durgakot – 5800 mts easily insight. The trekkers spend a night at this beautiful and unexplored meadow before heading back to Katheliya.
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