How not to trek to Indrahar Pass

Jitaditya Narzary

Is a traveller disillusioned by the familiar and fascinated with the unknown... and of course the founder of this blog.


Among all the things I have failed at in my life, the failed trips have hurt me the most. This time, I had a long weekend and the plan was firmly in place. For the first time I was also travelling with a large group of people as a part of my nascent business. But the signs were ominous right from the beginning. I had been working in the previous two weekends and had absolutely no time to prepare and also had high fever the previous night. Nevertheless, I decided to go anyways.

Bhagsu to Triund:

We reached Bhagsum slightly ahead of Dharamshala, the next morning. I was already washed up and was thinking of giving up. Nevertheless, I finally decided to proceed but it turned out to be the most tiresome trek of my life. I’d trekked to Triund last year too and that was a good experience. But this time round, everything was going wrong. It was dark by the time I reached and as it turned out, I was out of warm clothes too. Nevertheless, the sleeping bag saved the night.


The comatose camera:

My feelings towards my camera are rivalled by only those towards my hard disk. I have used it roughly and it has delivered results for more than three years consistently. But on that cold morning atop Triund, it showed the first signs of ageing. The shutter refused to close fully and basically I was getting only 60% of the images with a large black strip at the top. The images you see below are results of significant cropping and some of them look awkward for the same reason.

Reaching the snowline:

Those who were still in good shape in our group, decided to move towards the Lahesh Caves and climb up the Indrahar Pass the next day. But a few of us finally decided to give up. Physical exhaustion as well as the malfunctioning camera was enough for me to give consider this ignominious exit. Nevertheless, we still went up to the snowline, the last point en route to the Indrahar Pass where you can find food and shelter in a place obviously called the Snowline Cafe. It overlooks the Laqa got and the great Dhauladhars that tower over it. The café owner allowed us to spend the night there and the place was well stocked to provide us rice, maggi and cigarettes as required.



Laqa got








Snowline cafe

Snowline cafe


The Descent:

The next morning we descended back to McLeodganj. For me the most memorable point in this failed trek was the howling sound of the mountain gale, something very aptly illustrated decades ago by Herge in his masterpiece, Tintin in Tibet. This prompted me to by what the strange man on the left side is wearing once I was back at McLeodganj.


So, just to wind up this half-baked post, here is what you must do to ensure a failed Indrahar Pass Trek,
1. Assign 3 instead of 4 days and hope that you can just sprint through the entire trek
2. Take too many unnecessary things to make your backpack heavier that yourself
3. Start the trek at Bhagsu and tire yourself even before you reach Dharamkot when you can easily get an auto rickshaw to the same place.
Nevertheless, I must now plan something better to recover from this. Hope to share some good news soon.


  • 2013/10/20 - 6:51 pm | Permalink

    Failed trips and treks are indeed hard to make peace with. But whats commendable are the insights you have shared with us from the experience
    Its great to see people leverage their experience to build knowledge!
    Me thoroughly liked reading every bit of the post.
    All the best on your next expedition!

  • 2013/10/20 - 7:33 pm | Permalink

    Inspite of your failed shutter, the images have come out great. I loved how the images have come out. I guess you have adjusted colours and contrast here and there. Great work. Hope you recover from this failed trek 😀

  • 2013/10/20 - 8:50 pm | Permalink

    Stunner photo series !

  • 2013/11/02 - 5:34 am | Permalink

    Now I know what you meant when you said you got your camera fixed. :)

    I know how disappointing it is to return from a great place and not have pictures of it. As for the trek — you can do it again. Looking forward to the new set of pics. 😉

  • 2013/11/29 - 2:57 am | Permalink

    Wow, impressive photos! This is a part of the world I’ve never been to. Always love mountains and mountain hikes.
    Frank (bbqboy)

  • 2016/04/11 - 4:08 pm | Permalink

    Hey, you have an awesome blog. We are also planning the Indrahara Pass trek this weekend. I need some important information regarding the trek. As we are planning to trek without taking any company package, can we get tents and sleeping bags on rent from mcleodganj or dharamshala. Where we can hire a guide at economical rates and what about food availabilty at mountains such as Triund, Lahesh Caves, etc.

    • 2016/04/13 - 10:27 am | Permalink

      You will easily get what you need in McLo…. just ask around… the last place you get food is the snowline cafe, as mentioned in the post… for Lahesh etc you will have to carry food…

  • nandini
    2016/05/02 - 12:44 pm | Permalink

    thanks for the post, It is good, pics are good too.
    I am planning my trek to Indrahar this month,this is going to be my first trek, I am physically fit, but read many blogs saying this is steep and I wonder now if I can make it.although I am very much enthu to complete it, any tips from you please.

    • 2016/05/02 - 1:16 pm | Permalink

      Hi Nandini,

      It is not impossible but you should be careful if it is your first ever trek… because genuine trekking is a far different experience compared to working out in a gym…

      Also, beyond snowline, you will have to carry your supplies and stay at a cave at Lahesh… keep these aspects in mind…

  • Girish
    2016/09/27 - 11:35 am | Permalink

    Hello, Me and my two friends have planned for Shimla and Dharamsala plus McleodGanj, Dalhousie within 5 days. And I want to trek Triund Hills, Indrahar Pass and Lahesh caves. I know these are a lot of places for 5 days. I think If we should skip shimla now and visit that next time.
    I want to trek the Triund Hills, Indrahar Pass and Lahesh caves
    What do you suggest which place I must skip and visit next time?
    And Thanks for this post and these amazing pics.

    • 2016/09/27 - 1:55 pm | Permalink


      Shimla and Dharamshala are on completely opposite sides. So, skip Shimla or the time being…

  • Girish
    2016/09/27 - 11:37 am | Permalink

    We’ll leave Delhi on the night of 30 Sept or 1st Oct .

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