The third highest peak in the world, the majestic Kanchenjunga, also spelt Kangchenjunga, is one of the most stunning mountains. Surrounded by Nepal, Sikkim and Tibet, Mt Kanchenjunga was first scaled in 1955 but since then has been declared sacred. Kanchenjunga' is a Tibetan name which means 'The Five Treasures of the High Snow'. The treasures represent the five repositories of God, namely gold, silver, gems, grain and holy books. There are a lot of trekking routes in and around Kanchenjunga which will take you through woody forests and serene countryside.
Kangchenjunga Mountain near Darjeeling is the third highest peak in the world, with a peak elevation of 8,586 m. In the Kirat religion of Sikkim, the mountain is regarded very sacred and in the local Limbu language, it is also called Sewa Lungma. Out of the five peaks of Kanchenjunga, four can be viewed from many points in Darjeeling and Gangtok. Out of the many points in Darjeeling from where you can have a spectacular view of the peak, Tiger Hill is one of the best. If you're in Gangtok, the Goecha La trek in Sikkim is the standard base camp for trekking up the range.
Rail: New Jalpaiguri serves as the nearest railways station to Yuksom situated about 150 km away.
Road: Yuksom, the base camp for Goecha La is easily accessible via road from several major cities including Siliguri. It is about 140 km away and serves as an entry point for Sikkim as well as its capital city Gangtok.
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Base Camp : Yuksom
Difficulty : Difficult Gradient
Nearest Airport : Bagdogra
Nearest Railhead : 150 km
Region : Sikkim Himalaya, Sikkim
Snow : During the winter months, the park receives heavy snowfall making everything around full of mystery and magic. Heavy showers of rain also commences from May and continue on and off till mid October.
Starting point of trek : Yuksom
Day 1 : Gangtok to Yuksam
Distance: 1780 m , Duration: 6 hours
The drive from Gangtok to Yuksam consists of 6 long tiring hours. However, the ever change of scenery is extremely refreshing and luring. With tea garden, river and bridge comprising the journey, you will reach your final destination of Yuksam with relaxed mind where the trek begins.
Day 2 : Yuksam to Tshoka
Distance: 3050 m , Duration: 7 hours
From Yuksam, begin your trek uphill towards the Rathong River gorge passing through dense forest. You will be accompanied by magnolia, rhododendron, and several varieties of orchids, ferns, bright exotic birds, and monkey peeking around the corner. After a hike of about an hour, you will cross the Paha Khola Bridge (1,733 m). Another two hours of trek and there is a spot for swimming near a waterfall and a stream beneath a bridge, where you can stop for lunch break. After crossing the Prek Chu River, there will be steep ascend for two to three hours which will lead to Bakhim. A Tibetan refugee settlement of Tshoka is just a little above from there where you can settle for the day after a long trek.
Day 3 : Tshoka to Phedang
Distance: 3760 m , Duration: 4 hours
From Tshoka, a steep climb above will lead you to a splendid rhododendron forest. Contnue walking alongside a well defined trail till Phedang. Owing to the rarefied air, the trek on third day comprise of short distance hike of about 4 hours.
Day 4 : Phedang to Dzongri
Distance: 4320 m , Duration: 3 hours
This is yet another day of trekking when you will be covering a short distance as you tread above the 4,000 m mark. Try and set the camp by lunch time and spend the rest of the afternoon getting used to the area and climate. A short climb will take you to beautiful meadows where you are suggested to pitch your tents. The campsite offers some marvelous views of Koktang, Rathong, Kabru, Khangchendzonga, Simvo and Pandim. However, you may choose your campsite according to the availability of water.
Day 5 : Rest and overnight camping
On your fifth day either you can continue with your excursion or explore the raw beauty of the area by climbing the nearby small peaks offering bewitching views. The morning and evening view are the highlight of the panoramic scenic beauty it offers.
Day 6 : Dzongri to Bikhbari
After a full day rest and exploration of Dzongri, itÕs time to continue to the next destination, Bikhbari. Begin with hiking for half an hour through the climbing trails followed by a climb down the hill. Aftre descending for a while, the trail opens up to flat and smooth valleys until you reach Bikhbari. Enjoy the lush green surroundings as you arrive at your destination and rest for the day. This is also your campsite, so pitch your tents.
Day 7 : Bikhbari to Doodh Pokhari, Chaurikhang, Rathong Glacier
Make sure you begin your day early in the morning. Today you will be heading towards the Kangchendzonga Base Camp. The trek in the beginning is slow but steady in pace. As you keep trudging along the trail, you will come across plethora of scenic views but the sight of mystic Frey's peak, Koktang, Kabur and Rathong is awe inspiring. You will be returning back to Bikhbari by the advent of the evening. Every year, some advanced courses in mountaineering are conducted at this campsite by the Himalayan Mountaineering Institute, Darjeeling.
Day 8 : Bikhbari to Dzongri
After you are done with your breakfast, itÕs time to depart the campsite for the next stop of Dzongri. The trail will pass through the Dzongri-La Pass, the place exhibiting the sight of pure beauty. You will begin the trek with a climb up the hill to Dzongri-La, perched at an altitude of 4,500 m. However, for the remaining of the trek, you will be descending down towards Dzongri. As you arrive at the destination, check-in at the trekkerÕs camp and rest for the day while enjoying the wonders of nature all around.
Day 9 : Dzongri to Bakhim
From Dzongri, start with an ascent for about half an hour and then climb down the hill until reached a crossroad. Here, the road to left leads to Zamlingang while the right one comprising of a flat walk throughout will take you to Bakhim. Upon arrival, rest for a while and spend rest of the day at leisure at the campsite.
Day 10 : Bakhim to Yuksom
Have breakfast at the campsite and depart Bakhim for Yuksom. The trail will descend downwards till you reach the Prekchu Lake Bridge, after which you will continue to climb upwards until arrived at Yuksom. This marks the end of this exceptional trek comprising of the myriad of surprise elements.
Day 11 : Departure
It's finally time to depart the town.
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