The most popular treks from Chamba lead south over the Dhauladhar via the Minkiani or Indrahar pass to Dharamsala. Equipment can be rented and porters and guides hired in Chamba and Brahmour. Mani Mahesh Travels in Chamba organizes and equips treks.
Treks in the Pangi Valley to Lahaul
Few trekkers make it to the spectacular, all but inaccessible Pangi Valley, between the soaring Greater Himalayan Range in the north and the Outer Himalayan Range in the south. Several peaks within it have never been climbed, and onward paths lead to Kashmir, Lahaul and Zanskar. The trek to Lahaul takes nine or ten days from Traila (90km north of Chamba) via Satraundhi (3500m) over the Sach Pass to Killar, Sach Khas, and finishing in Purthi from where you can take a bus via Tindi to Udaipur. Buses run from here to Keylong, capital of Lahaul, for connections northwards to Leh or south over the Rohtang Pass and down to Manali.
Treks from Brahmour
Trekking routes lead north from Brahmour (2130m) over the Pir Panjal Range across passes that are covered with snow for most of the year. The challenging six- to seven-day trek over Kalichho Pass (4990m), “the Abode of Kali”, ends in the village of Triloknath, whose ancient temple to three-faced Shiva is sacred to both Hindus and Buddhists. Buses run from here to Udaipur, and on to Keylong and Manali.
Another demanding five- to six-day route crosses the Kugti Pass (5040m). From Hadsar, an hour by bus from Brahmour, the path follows the River Budhil for 12km to Kugti, then up to Kuddi Got, a vast flower-filled meadow (4000m). The next stage, over the pass, requires crampons and ice axes for an incredibly taxing six-hour climb. Having enjoyed views of the towering peaks of Lahaul and Zanskar from the summit, you plummet once again to the head of a glacier at Khardu, continuing down to Raape, 7km from Shansha, which is linked to Udaipur and Keylong by road.
Finally, a delightful three-day trek to the sacred lake of Manimahesh (4183m) starts from and returns to Hadsar. The awesome Manimahesh Kailash massif, with its permanent glaciers and ice fields, overlooks the lake.