The trail to the base of India’s second highest peak, Nanda Devi that looms at an imposing height of 7,816 meters, is a grapevine to every trekker from different parts of the world.
After the closure of the Nanda Devi Inner Sanctuary region, the Nanda Devi East Base Camp Trek became the sole route to trekkers to attest the beauty of the twin peaks –Nanda Devi and Nanda Devi East.
Though the first attempt to climb the Nanda Devi massif resulted in a failure, it was done in the year 1930 and again in the year 1934. Later in 1936 a British team with three Sherpa as companions climbed the mountain successfully and was followed by several other mountaineers in the succeeding years. On the other hand, Nanda Devi East massif was first climbed in the year 1939 and later in 1951 a French group tried an attempt but lost two members. According to Tenzing Norgay, who went for an expedition to look for those two French mountaineers, the Nanda Devi East massif is one of the most difficult summits he climbed.
The route to the massif passes through the beautiful Milam Valley and through several ancient villages, alpine meadows and glaciated tracks. The trek to Nanda Devi East Base Camp leads off at an altitude of approximately 4,200 meters en route to Milam Glacier. The journey undertaken once remains framed forever with the magnificent view of Rishi Parvat at 6,692 meters, Hardeol at 7,151 meters and Trishul I at 7,074 meters.
Being one of the most difficult treks in the Indian Himalayan region the journey requires several acclimatization bases. The actual trek to Nanda Devi East Base Camp commences from Lilam, which is approximately 17 – 18 kilometers from Munsiyari. From Lilam the trail heads to Bugdiar at an altitude of 2,700 meters passing through a thick forest of bamboo and a few Shepherd villages. From Bugdiar the trek uphill goes through the beautiful valley of Gori Ganga cutting through several gorges and alpine meadows dotted with Bhojpatra trees to Martoli at 3,430 meters. From Martoli you can capture the first glimpse of the Nanda Devi massif and the clear view of the Hardeol and Martoli peaks. The journey thereafter leads to Milam village, which lies at an elevation of 3,456 meters and thence it heads to Milam Glacier. From Milam after a day or two of acclimatization the trail commences to Lwani and thereafter to the Nanda Devi East Base Camp at 4,150 meters. One can explore the vicinity and capture the changing colours of the massif throughout the day and camp overnight. From the base camp the trail downhill follows the same route to Munsiyari.
|Altitude||4150 mts/13612 ft|
|Season||April – June & Sept – Oct|