Backpack to Chandratal Lake

Rate this Adventure India Jagatsukh Village

  • Activities:

    Camping, Backpacking, Hiking

  • Skill Level:


  • Season:

    Spring, Summer, Autumn

  • Trail Type:


  • RT Distance:

    42.3 Miles

  • Elevation Gain:

    7611.5 Feet


This is a tough, but beautiful 4 day hike to a stunning alpine lake in the Himachal Pradesh region of the Himalayas. You'll pass through beautiful forests, across a lush meadow, and witness the majesty of mountains higher than 6,000m.

Day 1: Jagatsukh Village to Seri: 15km: 6-8 hours

The trailhead starts in Jagatsukh Village so if you're staying in the town of Manali you'll either need to take a bus to the village or rent a motorbike. There is only one large bus terminal in Manali so it's fairly easy to catch a bus. From the trailhead you will follow a steep trail that follows the river through a beautiful forest to Khanul. When you reach Khanul you can see the Manali Valley below and Deo Tibba's peak to the left (6,000km/19,685ft). From Khanul you will continue increasing in elevation until you reach Chikka, a little mountain village. Chikka is a great stopping point if you're not as advanced or if you got a late start to the day. We decided to push on another 5km to Seri and made camp here. Seri used to be a glacial lake, but now it's a lush meadow with a variety of vegetation and small ponds and streams crossing the land.

Day 2: Seri to Chandratal Lake: 19km: 7-9 hours

From Seri you will start your day crossing the meadow and climbing up a steep snow and ice face. Having ice trekkers makes the climb infinitely easier, but it can be accomplished in snow boots or snowshoes. Once you make it over the incline you'll come to a plateau where you can see the entire Seri valley below. Make sure to take a break and soak in the beauty here. Continue pushing on along the trail where you will pass by alpine lakes until you reach a fork in the trail. This is a pretty long portion of the backpack so you won't reach the fork until closer to the end of the day, but once you do make sure you head to the right, this will lead you to Chandratal Lake. If you head to the left it will take you to a plateau overlooking the lake. Make camp at Chandratal Lake and don't forget to set alarms for a beautiful sunrise.

Day 3: Chandratal Lake to Seri: 19km: 7-9 hours

Day three starts your trek back towards your beginning point. You get to relive the beautiful scenery and make sure to be careful with the steep drop back down into the Seri valley. We pulled out our rain jackets and used them as sleds to slide down. Though this is not advised if you're uncomfortable with rather high downhill speeds! Set camp at Seri.

Day 4: Seri to Jagatsukh Village: 15km: 5-7 hours

Going down can be faster, but the decline is a very long trail that can be rough on the knees. Make sure to pace yourself as to avoid injury. It can still be a beautiful hike on the way down, take your time!

Pack List

  • Backpack
  • Tent
  • Sleeping pad
  • Sleeping bag
  • Ice Trekkers/ Snow Boots
  • Food for 4 days
  • Water bottle
  • Water purifier tabs
  • Cooking stove
  • Camera
  • Clothes for 4 days
  • Lots of socks
  • Sunglasses
  • Sunscreen
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Korey TaylorExplorer

The very basic core of a man's living spirit is his passion for adventure. The joy of life comes from our encounters with new experiences, and hence there is no greater joy than to have an endlessly changing horizon, for each day to have a new and different sun.

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