One of Uttarakhand’s lesser-traversed trails connects the most accessible glacier in the Kumaon region, the Pindari Glacier, which stretches more than 3km in length and almost 0.5km in width. Passing through pristine high mountain country and a host of tiny Himalayan villages, the trail follows the Pindar River to its source, offering views along the way of the region’s giants, among them Nanda Kot (6861m), Panwali Dwar (6663m) and Maiktoli (6m).
Beginning and ending in Song (1600m), the trail covers about 90km roundtrip and takes six days to complete, crossing over the Dhakuri Pass (2680m) and beyond the final settlement of Khati to reach Zero Point at the edge of the Pindari Glacier (3660m).
The whole trek can be done tea-house style, as basic government lodges dot the trail; near the glacier itself, you can opt to stay with a locally famous Sadhu who goes by the name Baba Ji. However, camping equipment and sleeping bags are highly recommended. Guides and porters are easily arranged in Song, connected to Bageshwar by jeeps (1hr 30min) and buses (2hr). The Pindari Glacier has also caught the attention of mountain bikers: two-wheel tours are run by Mike McLean (w mountainbikekerala.com) in April and October.