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Ideal duration: 1 day

Best Time: Feb-Sep Read More

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Gaumukh Tourism

One of the holiest lands in Uttarakhand, Gaumukh, or Gomukh, is the source of the holy Bhagirathi River. It is located 18km from Gangotri and is the second-largest glacier in India. It is thronged by devotees mainly for its serenity and pious mythological history. Gaumukh opens only between May to October and remains close for the rest of the year.

The name Gaumukh itself can be broken down to Gau- meaning cow, and Mukh - meaning mouth. The end of the Gangotri glacier is in the shape of a cow's mouth, and hence the name Gaumukh.

The trek route from Gangotri to Gaumukh is Gangotri - Chirbasa - Gila Pahar - Bhujbasa - Gomukh. The 18km trek is usually covered in 2 days. There is no place to stay at Gaumukh. Bhojbasa is the only night-halting place on the way, having some stay options. The best time to visit Gaumukh is Mid August to September. May and October are cold. Avoid Monsoon time between June to July.

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Must Know Before You Visit Gaumukh

  • Gaumukh National Park checkpoint is 2km from Gangotri. The bags are checked here and the items being carried are noted down.
  • Chirbasa pitstop is 7 km from the checkpoint. Maggi, tea, etc available here. There is a camping site near the river in Chirbasa which is a staying point for people doing Tapovan Trek.
  • The first 9km can be covered in 2.5 hours. The next 5km takes around 2-3 hours. And the last leg of the 4 km also takes around 2 hours. 
  • Start the trek early (around 6 AM) to reach Gaumukh the same day. Stay at Bhojbasa on return. If leaving late, then stay at Bhojbasa on the first day and finish the onward journey on the next day
  • To complete the entire trek on the same day, leave Gangotri at 5:15 AM - 5:30 AM
  • Pony is available at Gangotri Forest Checkpoint till Bhojbasa for INR 1800 two-way. It usually goes up to INR 2500 as they charge extra for luggage. 
  • Permit: Only about 150 travellers are allowed and permits have to be obtained in advance from District forest officer, Uttarkashi. The permit slip needs to be stamped at Uttarkashi or Gangotri, a few days before the journey for confirmation. The payment of INR 150 has to be made on reaching the forest office entry gate at Gangotri.
  • Accommodation: Book Garhwal Mandal Guesthouse (GMVN) at Bhojbasa. It has 32 beds in room and has to be booked online. Walk-ins are also available with 16 beds in tents. This costs INR 350/night. Only two toilets are there for the entire facility
  • There is no electricity in Bhojbasa. The GMVN guest house has a generator that is run in the evening for 1.5 hours.
  • Food: Canteen available at  GMVN guest house. However, it is strictly vegetarian. Costs around INR 200 p/p for a meal
  • There is also an ashram in Bhojbasa where you can sleep on the floor with a quilt and mattress. Costs around INR 350/night along with langar food.
  • Guide/Porter: You can take a guide from Gangotri to understand rough patches better. It will cost around INR 2500. Boarding and lodging will also have to be paid for (INR 1000 more). If you want only porter service, it is available at INR 2000 for the return journey. The guides on this route also help as a porter, but it is best to clarify this beforehand.
  • Network: There is no network connectivity after 3km of the trek, including BSNL
  • Things to Carry: Carry warm clothes, raincoat and oxygen cylinder. You can get an oxygen cylinder from Gangotri medical shop by paying INR 600 and if it is not used they will deduct INR 100 or 200 and return the balance money. It is not mandatory but advisable to carry
  • Spend a night in Gangotri for acclimatization

Gaumukh Photos

Gaumukh, Uttarakhand
Gaumukh Trek
Gomukh, Mouth of a Cow, the snout of the glacier along the river
A small shrine at Gaumukh, Gangotri glacier.

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FAQs on Gaumukh

What is the best time to visit Gaumukh?

September - June is the best time to visit Gaumukh. The sacred site of Gaumukh, from where the glacier finally starts melting giving birth to the great river, is best visited from April to June and again from September to November. The winter months are too cold for a visit and rainfall makes transportation difficult during the monsoons, which only leaves the spring, summer and autumn months.

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What is the local food in Gaumukh?

Not many eating out options are available due to the extremely challenging terrain. However, the guest houses at Bhujbhasa on the Gaumukh trek, the Lalbaba Ashram, the Rambaba Ashram, and the GMVN bungalow have some basic meals available, and a lot of dry food you can pack for the rest of the trek as well.
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What are the places near Gaumukh?

The top places near to Gaumukh are Auli which is 64 km from Gaumukh, Valley of flowers which is located 54 km from Gaumukh, Nelong valley which is located 21 km from Gaumukh, Kedarnath which is located 21 km from Gaumukh, Madhyamaheshwar which is located 35 km from Gaumukh

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Popular Questions And Answers on Gaumukh

Q. How many days does the Gaumukh Trek take? Are there any local trek organizers?

Sudhir Gaur

3 years ago
Starting from gangotri its 18kms.. if you want so it can be easily covered in one day but u can also stay in chirbhasa which is 4kms from gangotri(just incase you are coming out of any other trek) .. (Read More). keep your tents and food ready because you wouldn't find any resturants or hotels there.. even your phone will not work.. make sure u know the bitter truths of going into a glaciers.. so be ready for amazing experience.. the beginners may go with NIMS based in Uttarkashi.. they are the best..

Gaumukh Reviews

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Devyani Chandra

3 years ago
- Carry heavy mountaineering shoes, the terrain does not allow for normal sports gear.
- Pack lots of dry foodstuff, or if not a whole lot of it, then at least enough to last you till Bhujwasa, th (Read More)e half trek pitstop.
- Carry water, and your usual medical supplies, especially hydrating solutions like ORS etc. since the trek is short, but very tiring in its own self.
- Travel light, avoid too much clothing or unnecessary baggage, since you have to carry it all along the trek itself.
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