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Roopkund Skeleton Lake Trek

Roopkund, Uttarakhand
Not Rated

7 Nights 8 Days

Tour Type

Specific Tour

Group Size

30 people



About Roopkund Trek

Roopkund(locally known as Mystery Lake or Skeletons Lake) is a high altitude glacial lake and a popular trekking destination in the Uttarakhand state of India. It lies in the lap of  Trishul massif. Located in the Himalayas, the area around the lake is uninhabited and is roughly at an altitude of 16,470 feet (5,020 m), surrounded by rock-strewn glaciers and snow-clad mountains.

With a depth of about two meters, Roopkund is widely known for the hundreds of ancient human skeletons found at the edge of the lake. The human skeletal remains are visible at its bottom when the snow melts. Research generally points to a semi-legendary event where a group of people were killed in a sudden, violent hailstorm in the 9th century. Because of the human remains, the lake has been called Skeleton Lake in recent times.

Region: Uttarakhand

Difficulty level: Easy to Moderate

Best Time: Oct-Mar

Duration: 8 Days

Accommodation Type: Camps/Home Stay

Meals: Veg+Egg

Max Altitude: 16,100 ft

Trekking distance: 55 km approx.

How To Reach Dehradun:

By Train: The nearest best railway station is Dehradun or Kathgodam. You can board Ddn Nzm Ac Express(2205), Nanda Devi Express or Dehradun Express from Delhi. People usually prefer trains overflights because it is more economical. Take a bus or cab to reach Rishikesh.

By Bus: There are regular buses from Delhi to Haridwar/Rishikesh, Delhi (ISBT Kashmiri Gate ).  You can easily rely on government buses as they are also safe.

By Flight: Nearest Airport is Jolly Grant Airport – Dehradun. You can take a bus or local cab to reach Dehradun/Rishikesh. It just takes 30-40 min to reach Rishikesh from Dehradun Airport.

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  • Roopkund lake is nestled amidst panoramic mountain scenery, surrounded by a rock-strewn glacier.
  • Explore the meadows which make the trek unbeatable.
  • Unravel the mystery from the locals behind the famous name - of Skelton lake.
  • Visit the sacred Bedni bund for crystal clear waters.

Day 1:- Kathgodam to Lohajung

Arrive early at Kathgodam railway station and drive to Lohajung which will take approximately 9 to 10 hours. Breakfast and Lunch will be on the way at a roadside inn, exclusive of charges. The route passes through many beautiful hill stations like Bhimtal, Almora and Kausani. You drive alongside local rivers and get views of many peaks like Kamet, Nanda Ghunti, Trishul, and Nanda Devi amongst others. Arrive at your base camp, Lohajung by the evening. It is a small town with very basic facilities available. Dinner and overnight stay at Lohajung.

Day 2:- Lohajung to Didna Village/Tolpani

Start your journey from Lohajung; take the trail that takes you to Raun Bagad. It is a fairly marked trail that descends through mixed forests. It is a moderate trek and you would take around 2-2½ hrs to reach the Ruan Bagad, which is an iron bridge across the famous Neel Ganga River. The climb to Didna starts once you cross the bridge. It is a difficult climb and you may get tired pretty soon. With a relatively tough time in the beginning, you would reach Didna in about an hour and a half’s time. Overnight at Didna/Tolpani.

Day 3:- Didna Village to Khobal Tal via Ali Bugyal

Today from Tolpani, you take a trail that climbs to Tolkaan in the northern direction. The meadow trek goes through a series of switchbacks and grassy oak mountains. From Tolkaan, you take a sharp left towards the south and steer through the ridge to come out of the forest at Ali Bugyal. It takes nearly two and a half hours to reach Ali Bugyal on this route. Overnight stay in tents.

Day 4:- Khobal Tal to Patar Nachauni via Bedni Bugyal

Trek from Khobal Tal to Patharnachuni is an easy trek and follow a straight line ahead of you for about 4 km. On your gradual increase to the slope, the trek brings you to the other side of the ridge. Enjoy the marvellous sight over the ridge. Patharnachuni is a brilliant campsite and offers you great views all around. Overnight at Patharnachuni in tents.

Day 5:- Patar Nachauni to Bhagwabasa via Kalu Vinayak

Start your trek through the steep dash to gain altitude and finally trek in the snow line. The day’s snow trek will bring you to an altitude of 14,500 ft from 12,500 ft. It is a high altitude trekking. You would have to start your day early as you would like to reach Bhagwabasa as early to acclimatize to the weather. Continue to climb to Kalu Vinayak, which is a steep and zigzag way to take you up the mountain. Go through this section carefully and slowly. It takes around one and a half hours to reach Kalu Vinayak. The route from Kalu Vinayak to Bhagwabasa is simple and gradually sloping downwards. Bhagwabasa is 2 km away and you can have a view of the Bhagwabasa huts from here. Overnight in the tents at Bhagwabasa.

Day 6:- Bhagwabasa to Roopkund Summit to Pathar-Nachuni

Start the day as early as 4 AM as the snow is still hard, while later in the day, it would get soft and your feet would start sinking in. Roopkund is a 5 km gradually uphill climb from Bhagwabasa. You will have a steep climb towards the end of the trail to reach Roopkund. It would take about 3 - 3½ hours to reach Roopkund. Once you climb to Roopkund, you must climb up to Junargali. The climb to Junargali is not long. It is around 200 ft and doesn’t take much time. It is hardly a climb of 25 - 30 min. You can start off early to return back to Patar Nachuni via Bhagwabasa.

Day 7:- Pathar-Nachuni to Lohajung via Wan

Enjoy your journey back to Lohajung via Wan. The path is fairly simple and you would not feel any distress throughout. You would cross the oak forest as you go and the scenic beauty is just mesmerizing. You would see the end of the meadows after a few minutes. Get astonished by looking at the Trishul on your way back from Bedni Bugyal to Wan and pass the Rhododendron forest. This will be a steep descent for the Neel Ganga. Faster trekkers reach there in approximately one and a half hours. However, you should take your time and enjoy the beauty as you go by. From the river, it takes about half an hour to climb to the ridge above Wan village. Overall it takes about 6 -7 hours to Wan. Drive back to Lohajung.

Day 8:- Lohajung to Kathgodam End of journey.

Drive from Lohajung to Kathgodam.

  • Food as per menu on the trek.
  • Tents, Sleeping bags, mats.
  • Forest permits and camping fee.
  • Trek guide, cook, and support staff
  • Porters/mules to carry trekking equipment.
  • First aid medical kit, oxygen cylinder and UIAA certified safety equipment.
  • Trek Certificate
  • Experience that you will gain.
  • Any kind of personal expenses on the trek.
  • Transport from Dehradun to Dehradun
  • Meal during road journeys.
  • Mules or porter to carry personal luggage.
  • Any kind of travel insurance.
  • Anything not specified in the inclusion list.
  • Note* If you don't want to carry your backpack 🎒 you can give it to porter/Mules🐴, but you have to inform us in advance and have to pay Rs. 1200/- extra per bag for the whole trek.

8+ Days

Autumn (Oct-Nov)
Summer (May-Jun)

Tour's Location

Roopkund, Uttarakhand

How long we have to trek every day?
The average walking distance is 7- 8 km each day and trekkers complete it in 5-7 hrs. Please refer to the trek itinerary for more details.
What kind of food is provided on the trek?
Vegetarian food will be served throughout the trek. Breakfast varies from bread and butter, semia, poha and cornflakes etc. Lunch mainly comprises roti or puri with sabzi. Dinner is complete with Dal, rice, roti and dessert. A dry ration of biscuits and toffees will be provided as well. You may carry nuts and dry fruits if necessary.

Will there be water sources on the way? Will two liters of water be enough?
Our campsites are pitched near water sources. For your day’s trek, two liters of water should be enough. You will find water sources on the trek to refill your water bottles. Your trek leader will brief you about these before starting the day’s trek.
What is the washroom/toilet facilities like on the trek?
During the trek, toilet tents will be set up along each campsite. A toilet tent will have a deep pit, where one can answer nature’s call. There will be a mound of soil and a shovel to cover it up. These are dry toilets, where you’ll have to use toilet paper. This is the most hygienic and convenient way to answer nature’s call in the wild. Please use plain toilet paper and refrain from using wet wipes since these are not biodegradable.
What will be the accommodation?
Roopkund Trek is an 8-day trek. The stay on Day 1 and Day7, at Lohajung, will be in a guest house, where you will share rooms with fellow trekkers. Stay on all other days of the trek will be in tents. Each tent will be shared among 2 trekkers. Toilet tents will be set up for the convenience of trekkers.
Do you provide tents and sleeping bags?
Yes, you will be provided with tents and high-altitude sleeping bags that can withstand temperatures as low as -10 ºC.
Which are the best seasons for the Roopkund Trek?
Roopkund Trek is best done between Apr to Jun and Sept-Nov
What is the best time to see snow?
You are likely to find snow near Roopkund Lake from Mid Dec - Mid June.
What if it rains while trekking?
If it starts raining while you’re trekking, we will continue on the trail as planned. Your poncho should protect you from the rain. Carry a backpack cover for extra protection from rain for your belongings.
What will be the temperature on the trek?
During the daytime, the sunlight is good and the weather is clear but you have to dress in layers at the night. The temperature will be between 10 to -7 degrees. Please carry all your layers as mentioned in the 'things to carry' section. It really gets cold in the night as the temperature dips to minus degrees.
When it gets really cold can I consume alcohol?
Alcohol is dangerous in extreme cold, especially at high altitudes. Contrary to what people believe, alcohol does not make you warmer. Instead, it opens your pores, making your body colder. Moreover, it dehydrates you very quickly. Hence consumption of alcohol is absolutely prohibited on all Nomad Adventures treks. Anyone found with alcohol is quickly removed from the trek. Smoking, similarly, is not allowed on Nomad Adventures treks.
What all do I need to carry on the trek?
Please visit the 'Things to Carry' tab to check the essentials required for the trek.
Are trek poles, jackets and other equipment available for rent from Nomad Adventures?
No, but there are shops on the base camp from where you can rent shoes, jackets and trek poles, headlights etc.
Do I need special snow shoes on this trek?
You don’t need special snowshoes. A good waterproof trekking shoe is sufficient for the trek. When there is snow, we provide micro spikes and gaiters.
Why is the trekking pole necessary?
A trekking pole gives you stability and balance and helps reduce fatigue.
What is the age limit?
The minimum age limit is 8 years. However, minors aged between 8 to 17 should be accompanied by their parents or guardians. The maximum age is 65 but please follow the fitness regime before coming on the trek.
Can I take my child along on this trek?
Roopkund Trek is a moderate to difficult trek and requires trekkers to be physically fit. The minimum age eligibility is 8 years. As a parent or guardian, if you feel that your child can adapt to the conditions of the mountains and would be able to walk every day as required, then certainly, yes!. It is recommended to maintain good physical stamina before coming on the trek.
At what time should we reach Kathgodam?
It is advisable to reach Kathgodam railway station by 8.30 am. Nomad Adventures pick up is lined up at that time. From there 9-11 hr journey takes us to Lohajung (trek starting point).
What kind of vehicle will be there?
Tata Sumo/ Bolero/Max kind of vehicles we arrange and accommodate 6-7 People in a vehicle.
Is this a good trek for a first timer?
Roopkund Trek is graded as a moderate to difficult trek. Beginners can attempt this trek provided they stick to a good fitness schedule and meet the health requirements. As in all treks, physical preparation is mandatory.
Is there a mobile network on this trek? And, what about charging points?
The last electricity charging point would be in Lohajung. You’ll get a full network in Lohajung and intermittent signals around the campsites. However, come prepared for the possibility of power cuts. It is good to carry your power banks and extra batteries for your camera.
Who will be there with us on the trek from Nomad Adventures?
Nomad Adventures team consisting of a qualified Trek leader, trek guides, porters and cooks will be with you throughout the trek.
What places I can visit before or after the trek?
You can spend time exploring tourist attractions around Manali like visiting old Manali, Hadimba temple, Manu temples, Vashist hot water springs, Jogini waterfall and Rohtang valley. Please note that these are suggestions and Nomad Adventures does not make any arrangements for visiting them.
I am solo female trekker. Do I need to share a tent with a male?
No, Female Trekkers share Room/Tent with female co-trekkers and the same applies to others.
Is it safe to trek with Nomad Adventures?
All high-altitude treks come with their share of risks. We pay utmost importance to the safety of trekkers. While we do our bit to ensure a trekker is safe, we also expect any trekker who is enrolling with us to know what could go wrong, and if it does, how to tackle it.
Can I leave my extra luggage behind and collect after the trek?
Since you will be starting and returning to the same base camp in Lohajung, it is possible for you to leave excess luggage behind. However, make sure you do not leave any valuables. Nomad Adventures is not responsible for loss or damage to any belongings.
How many members will be joining the batch?
Minimum 6 people and maximum 20 we take in one batch. We need a minimum of 6 people to run a fixed departure but for the customized trip group size doesn’t matter.
Is Diamox advisable?
No, but in case you are having so please consult your doctor because there are lots of myths about Diamox.
Is there any chance of offloading the backpack?
If you want to offload your rucksack, you will have to inform us in advance so that the necessary arrangements are made. You will be charged per day for offloading your rucksack. If you decide on the spot then the charges are higher than usual.
What are the mandatory documents required for the trek?
Carry Adhar ID proof, medical certificate and Covid vaccine certificate.


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