Snowman Trek I

Trip Facts

Snowman Trek I
Length : 25 Days - 24 Nights
Start : Paro
Finish : Paro
Trip Style : Trekking Tour
Discounts : Applicable on this trip
Group Size : Maximum 12, Avg 5
Group Leader : Certified Tour Leader from The DBT.
Transport : New Model Toyota Hiace /Coaster bus/Land Cruiser not more than 3 years old.
Trip Rating by Popularity :
Physical Demand Rating :
Can it be Tailored? : Yes

Trip Overview

Extending from the highly prolific sights of Laya-Gasa Trek, one can consider a lifetime opportunity to visit the SnowMan Trek that takes you at the thrilling ascents of Bhutanese Himalayas. At this high altitudes,where air is as condensed as the dark blue junctions of skies with the hills, you may have to endure a tough session into the peripherals of Lunana region. Diverging again to Gankhar Puensum or declining down to Sephu valleys is another remarkable experience that as a trekker enthusiast you will remember all your life. Depending on the travel route (or the trekking alignment) you can also reach to Bumthang or on the slopes of Trongsa district.

The Snowman trek, typical to Himalayan range, has an outstretched area through the most abandoned spectacles of Bhutanese geography. Encompassing areas as high as peaks, high altitudes is a common feature in the entire region. Most trekkers, who make to this high-altiftude, have to make camps at heights not less than 5000 metres above the sea level. Also, as temperature and atmospheric pressures are highly volatile at the peak of this plateau, the camps may encounter several instances of heavy snow-falls. Notwithstanding that, trekking is an adventurous sport here and with a suitable local guide, you can avoid the perils of staying at such exciting places.

You can consider spending some twenty to twenty-five days at this trekking venue. While the mountains are as disruptive as the seasonal variances, the incredible height that this trekking can offer to you is five kilometers above the mean sea level. So get prepared with all your enthusiasm to spend some time in the camps as high as 5,050 metres. But beyond all hazards and risks, mountaineers and trekking lovers have reached even higher and have camped as high as 5,320 metres.

As such, there is no particular season to indulge in adventures. But given the perils of snow-falls and low atmospheric temperatures, it is recommended that you plan your trekking trips anywhere between mid-June to mid-October. That is the most optimal time in the entire year when the risks are minimized and yes, excitement and thrill at its rarest springs.

Beginning from the Gunitsawa village in the Paro Valley, you will like to begin your journey and through various slopes and incredulous ascents, you will finally reach the finish line, that is located in the Sephu village (Trongsa), subject to the choice of your route and the nature of your trekking module.

Outline Iteinerary

Day 1: Gunitsava Village

Beginning with the eloquently marvelous sight of GunitSawa Village (Sharna Zampa), you take a forty-minute route to your next stop. You have to pass the Army post, where your trek permit and other formal documents are verified. In most of the cases, the trek permit is obtained by the tour operator himself, but in case you have different arrangements, you must produce your trekking permit to the competent authority to facilitate the process of documentation, etc.

Once your trek permits are endorsed, you are good to proceed, and move to the campsite that is located on the opposite bank of the river. It is around 80 metres of descent and the camp altitude, varying not very largely, maintains an average of 2050 metres above the MSL (mean sea level).

Day 2: Sharna Zampa Thangthangkha

After Gunitsava Village, you march ahead to Sharna Zampa region. A moderate distance of twenty-two kilometers, it will take you some seven to eight hours to ascend around 770 metres of height. You will then have to take a downward trip of about ten metres so as to settle at a camp. You will reach the camp altitude being 3610 metres through a lot of minor zig-zags in the mountains. During the journey, the route narrows down to a merely walkable path across the river valley. When the weather is appropriate and without snowfalls, your eyesight will permit you to witness the spectacular view of Mount Jomolhari.

Day 3: Thangthangkha- JangoThang

After you are content with the picturesque view of Mount Jomolhari, you will move towards your next venue. Thangthangkha, located in the Jangothang region, is nineteen kilometers away from Sharna Zampa and will take you five to six hours of mountain journey so as to ascend to a further height of 480 metres. For those who missed the arresting sight of Mount Jomolhari, they can still see the exhibition during their movement to the approaching venue.

Continuing your journey through the Paro Chhu valley, your route will widen into some accommodating patches of alpine vegetation range. Since the area covers a good deal of forests and has potentials of wildness in it, you should be meticulous and sincere while crossing the distance, lest some undesired danger befalls on you. You will encounter one or two army check posts, and once you cross them, you can again enjoy the striking mountain ranges and snow-laden high peaks. The sights are as amazing as you can imagine, and while you enjoy the picturesque scenery, you will be pleased to find the native animals, the yaks and their caretaker herder’s homes situated in this valley.

Also, this valley has sheltered human inhabitation for centuries and so you will come across the simplified villages Takethang, Seo and Dangochang as well. You can stay in any of these villages to have a real life experience of how these simple people have managed to stay in this oddly situated villages for their lifetimes.
Moving ahead, when you reach Jangothang, you will but only have to stop to see the most captivating and enticing campsites in the Himalayan range. Mount Jomolhari again comes to your site, and you can relax here, bewildering at nature’s bliss.

DAY 4: JANGOTHANG HALT

Jangothang is an excellent spot for trekking enthusiasts. Providing you with various possibilities to explore the mountain ranges, you can try day hikes and have a scenic advantage of many lakes nearby. Mountains like Jomolhari and Jichu Drake remain capped with snow and the sunshine to invite your attention towards some really cute, blue sheep on the upper edges of the valley’s landscape.

Nature has designed Jangothang with the rarest virtues to facilitate acclimatization and so despite your endurance ability or the pace at which you familiarize yourself with the swiftly changing environment, you can trek here at your personal comfort.

From here, you may digress from your existing trekking route plans as well. You can either prefer going west, along with the mountain range Jomolhari and its extending sister mountains or rather choose to move towards the north, where Jichu Drake is again a good choice for trekking. Alternatively, you may also want to move towards the virgin, unclimbed peaks in the east and explore the possibilities.

DAY 5: JANGOTHANG – LINGSHI

One of the longest days in the entire trekking module, it covers a distance of eighteen kilometers on the rocky mountain range. You will have to speed up a little to cross the gradually ascending trek route through Nyilila pass (4,870 metres above the MSL). Typical to its high altitudes, you are sure to catch sight of many herds of blue sheep grazing and enjoying themselves on the less steep slopes. A total of 840 m of ascent and then 870 metres of downward trekking can call you to a camp that is situated at a height of 4010 metres above MSL.
And the Nyilila pass is even more special, in the sense that standing here, you get to see all the three mountains- Mount Jomulhari, Tsherimgang and Jichu Drake, elevating themselves to a height quite above 7000 metres. You will notice a few camps that have the remarkable presence of tents being made with yak wool.

While you approach down into the famous U-shaped Lingshi basin, you will find an eye-catching sight of Lingshi Dzong provided the days are clear and the weather moderately calm. Don't forget to have a glance at the glaciers of Tserimgang that rise at the northern ends of this valley. Having exquisite views to welcome you, the campsite is close to the Lingshi Dzong, and you can rest for a few hours before you march ahead to Lingshi Chebisa.

DAY 6: LINGSHI – CHEBISA

After five days of rigorous trekking, you might need to have a less tiresome day. Welcome to day 6, which is one of the shortest walking days in the trekking module.Just a few minutes after you begin, you will reach a Chorten, located below the famous Lingshi Dzong. From here, you can take a detour route so as to reach Lingshi Dzong. At a high altitude of 4220 metres, Dzong is under the process of being reconstructed after the tragic aftermath of 2001 earthquake. The earthquake shattered its central building but the remains are no less beautiful than the originally erected spot and, therefore, the sight is as pultichudinous as ever.

Once you cross the beautiful buildings of Lingshi Dzong, you will come across the villages named Goyul and Lingshi. The speciality of Goyul is that unlike the usual inhabitation habits of Bhutan, Goyul accommodates closely located stone houses to form a mini-village.
Nearby the village is a lovely waterfall that you just can't resist watching it for considerable time.

DAY 7: CHEBISA – SHOMUTHANG

On the seventh day of your trekking schedule, you will have to take a high ascent behind the Chebisa village. Passing across the wide pastureland might take you from two to three hours to reach Gobu La Pass, situated at a height of 4,410 metres.

After you cross this pass, you will have to take a downward trip to the valley, only to climb again for a short while before moving down again to Shakshepasa valley. At this point, you will have to climb a bit to reach the next campsite at Shomuthang. This campsite is situated above a tributary of Nochu river, and the scenic beauty that it provides cannot be expressed in words alone.

DAY 8: SHOMUTHANG – ROBLUTHANG

Initiating your erstwhile journey by ascending to the valley, you will come across the majestic Kang Bum Mountain (6,526 m) along with some other outstretches of the mountain range.

You will need to continue climbing and ultimately reach Jhari La (4750 m). It is from here you begin witnessing the glorious Sinche La pass that you will be making acquaintances with the next day.

Noting the prolific sight of the northern mountain peak Gangchhenta, you can catch its view from this distance itself and watch the Great Tiger Mountain, as Gangchhenta is popularly called.
In days of clear weather, the top of Jomolhari mountains and the Tserim Kang is quite visible. Moving ahead, you reach to the nearest camp site, situated by the banks of the river valley at Tsheri Jathang. This valley is also a wildlife sanctuary, famously conserving the Bhutan's national animal, takin. Climbing a bit higher, you can reach the campsite at Robluthang.

DAY 9: ROBLUTHANG – LIMITHANG

On the ninth day, you start with a usual ascent of forty to sixty minutes and then approach to a point from what you will have to ascend high for around one and a half hour. After that, there is another one-hour steep ascent, and then you reach Sinche La. Situated at a height of 5,005 metres above the MSL, it is the highest pass you have come so far. In case you want to end your trek, this is also the final pass you are going to stay. However, for ultra-enthusiasts, the Snowman trek awaits for some really exciting adventures.

Descending far off through the other side of the pass, an impressive glacial lake awaits your arrival at the foot of the valley. Passing that, you travel to reach to the Kango Chhu, soon to arrive at Limithang campsite.

DAY 10: LIMITHANG – LAYA

The tenth day is taking you downhills all towards a narrow 340 metres of descent into a winding river valley. Remember the alpine forest range that crossed your route on day 3. Now again is the time to enter a dense forest area. The trail will further take you to the western end of the Laya village where from you can see the two Mountains, viz. Mount Masagang and Mount Gangchhenta. You will then reach to a community school that has basic amenities such as telephone booth and standard health care facilities. You can settle for the nights at this place itself calling a campsite moment.

Day 11: Rest / Acclimatisation day in Laya

This is primarily a day of rest and acclimatization. Whether you initiated your journey from Paro valley or Gasa, Punakha, you would like to spend a day in relaxation and preparing for the rest of trekking days. Laya is a great place to stay, not just due to its spectacular natural scenery but also the extremely friendly inhabitant settled around the place.

Day 12: Laya – Rhoduphu

From Laya, your team will have to go down towards the army camp. From there, you would rather follow the river so as to reach Rhoduphu. Settle down for a while and then restart for the day a climb that takes you through many thorny bushes until you reach your next camp near the Rhodu Chhu.

Day 13: Rhodophu – Narethang

You have already followed the river for too long, just half an hour more and then you can start ascending to the open valley to the Tsomo La (4900m). Tmoso La is a superb place to capture the essential views of Mount Jomolhari, Lunana and Jichu Drake. Situated at one of the highest plateaus of the world, this high open valley is close to the Tibetian Border. Covering a broad area at a height of 5000 metres, here you will find your next campsite, Narethang at the peak of Gangla Karchung 6395m.

Day 14: Narethang – Tarina

Heading high towards the Gangla Karchung La pass, you will have to climb for an hour to catch the picturesque view of the mountain junctions combining the exquisite combination of Tsenda Kang,

Jekangphu Gang and Teri Gang, all at one place. The pass then allows you to move down through a relatively large moraine, thereby crossing the deep glacial lake. Until you reach the campsites situated along the Tang chhu, you will have to keep descending through Tarina valley.

Day 15: Tarina – Woche

Crossing through the inlets of the dense conifer forests, you will follow your trails on the upper edges of Pho Chhu. A few magnificent waterfalls will lie in the way and once you pass them, your day's journey will end to settle at Woche, the first village on your way in the Lunana region.

Day 16: Woche - Lhedi

Maintaining your trekking speed through fir and juniper forest regions, you will have to climb to reach Keche La pass that is again an excellent spot to have a content glance at the surrounding mountain ranges.

The trek route then asks you to come down to the riverside, accompanying the arresting scene of Table Mountain, Lhedi Village. You will be happy to find a school, basic healthcare amenities and of course, the wireless telephone facilities in this village.

Day 17: Lhedi - Thanza
When the weather is calm and does not call for snow falls, you can enjoy the picturesque scenary of Table Mountain (7100 m). Continuing further, you will move to the Chozo village that has one dzong still in working conditions. Reaching Thanza will streamline your journey for the day and will be a diverting point for you to continue either to the camp at Thanza itself or rather going to a camp in Thoencha.

Day 18: Rest day at Thanza

This day is allocated for you to have rest and visit the village so as to have some real time experience in a typically simple Bhutanese village. Now the arrangement of new yaks and other amenities may usually take a day, so you will have to spend the day here itself.

Day 19: Thanza – Danji

After a day's rest, your trekking enthusiasm seems to be revitalized. So, prepared as you are, you climb to the cliffs that provide you with a clearer and broader view of Thanza, Choso and Toencha villages. You will love to see the blue sheep all around, grazing and having their time on the high-altitudes of Bhutan. Further, you can settle down at a campsite or rather move to Gangkhar Puensum base camp and even as far as Sephu (Trongsa).

Day 20: Danji – Tshochena

Moving five to six hours on the twentieth day will take you towards Sephu and after a long session of trekking when you climb up, you reach the Jaze La, situated at 5150m, The panoramic mountain site will guide you to descend below the snow-capped peaks and a few glacial lakes to the next camp site. Near the shore of Tshochena Lake, you can settle for the coming night.

Day 21: Tshochena – Jichu Dramo

On the twenty-first day of your trekking adventures, you will pass through crystal-clear blue-green lakes to approach a ridge at 5100m. Going through a continuum of vertical zig-zags, you will affront a glacial lake. From here, the route will go down first but only to climb again so as to reach the 5140m high Luju La. Eventually, you will pass through a small saddle after which you will arrive at a glacial valley to finally settle at a campsite near the Jichu Dramo.

Day 22: Jichu Dramo – Chukarpo

After leaving the camp site at Jichu Dramo, you begin moving upwards to Rinchen Zoe La. And your efforts are worth it because on this trek route, you will now get a chance to experience the bliss of standing as high as 5320 metres above the sea level, and see the Gangkhas Puensum, the highest pass on this journey.

Getting down from the pass, you will cross several lakes in the valley only to approach to Thamphe Chhu. Typical to the low valleys, the vegetation is denser, and the good trees have inhabitated the rocky foothills of the mountain. Moving head for a few hours, you can finally arrive at the campsite at Chukarpo.

Day 23: Chukarpo – Thampe Tsho

Continue travelling down for five to six hours and you will reach the noticable huts at Gala Pang Chhu. There is a sheer descent down this point that takes you to the clear and picturesque lake, Thampe Tsho. Your next campsite is close to it.

Day 24: Thampe Tsho – Maurothang

After the Thampe Tsho campsite, you will need to climb to reach the only remaining pass during this trekking module. Thampe La is situated at a height of 4600 metres above the ground and is surrounded by eloquent weather and water bodies such as lakes and waterfalls. Taking the path through these curvy trek routes, you finally reach to Nikka Chhu, thereby admitting yourself to a sort of mixed forest that takes you to the yak herders' huts at Maurothang.

Day 25: Maurothang-Sephu

So finally we are there! The last day of your trekking experience, you will have to change your yaks and mount on horses as the yaks are quite reluctant to take you down to the lower areas of the plateau. On the horse you take a path that brings you to the Sephu village.

Ultimately finding a road at Nikka Chhu bridge, you will find many shops and stores that offer saleable items. Also, a few small hotels and restaurants may also be found close by.

Date and Departure Information

Fix Departure Dates are yet to be announced. If you are interested for this trip, please click the button below for the further inquiry

Price Details

The Tourism Council of Bhutan (TCB), Tourism Business regulating agency of the Royal Government of Bhutan, fixes the Tourist Tariff rate. This rate is valid for all the inclusive tour packages. The tariffs for tourists visiting in a group of 3 persons or more are as follows:

Peak Season Rate: (March, April, May, September, October and November) Cultural Tour /Trekking – US$ 250/per person per night halt.

Low Season Rate:(January, February, June, July, August and December) Cultural Tour /Trekking- US$ 200/per person per night halt.

Price Inclusions

  • Bhutan Royalty ($65 per person per day).
  • Visa Fees ($40 per person).
  • All necessary permit fees.
  • All transfers and sightseeing with entrance fees.
  • All meals including evening tea.
  • All accommodation in our partner hotels, which are some of the best in the country on twin sharing basis.
  • All trekking equipments and logistics including cooks, camp personnel, horsemen and ponies.
  • English-speaking tour leader, guide and driver.
  • Trekking Insurance (Our value-added service).
  • Cultural Performance (our value-added service).

Price Exclusion

  • Airfare for flights into and out of Bhutan.
  • All personal expenses like laundry, telephone, tips, shopping expenses.
  • Meals and Beverages other than the ones mentioned above (see inclusions).
  • Spa Charges.
  • Travel and Medical insurance.

Route map

Snowman Trek I
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Buffalo, New York



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