Snowman Trek

This Snowman trek trail is one of the top 10 toughest treks in the world. The Snowman Trek is an extension of Jumolhari Trek and then the beautiful Laya Gasa Trek. The Trek route passes through the remote village of Laya and many high mountain passes of the Himalayas. It takes seasoned and experienced trekkers into the remote Lunana region and the base of Gangkhar Puensum.  You can end the trek coming down to Sephu village in Trongsa district or in Bumthang. The Trekkers have to cross 4700 m multiple times and trek above 5,000 m more than once. You often have to camp on snow as you cross Thanza.

Snowman Trek Overview:

Trek duration: 24 days.

Total duration: 28 nights / 29 days.

Highest Camp: 5,120 m.

Max. Elevation: 5,320 m.

Starting Point: Shana, Paro.

End Point: Sephu, Trongsa.

Difficulty Level: Very Difficult.

Snowman Trek Itinerary:

Paro-dzong

Rimpung Dzong.

Day 1: Arrive Paro and Sightseeing:

Meet & Greet at the airport and transfer to the hotel.

After lunch, visit to:

  • Ta dzong, the National Museum of Bhutan.
  • Rinpung Dzong (Paro Dzong) built in 1646 by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal.
  • Visit Kyichu Lhakhang, Bhutan’s oldest and most sacred monastery built in the 7th century

Day 2: Paro Sightseeing Day Hike to Taktsang Monastery – Shana:

After breakfast,

  • Hike to the famous Tiger’s Nest Monastery.
  • Drukgyel Dzong built by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal in 1644.
7-nights-8-days-Bhutan-Tour

Tiger’s Nest (Taktsang) Monastery.

In the evening, drive to Shana (20 km. – 1 hour drive).

Dinner and overnight in camp.

Day 3: Sharna – Thang thanka – Start of Snowman Trek:

We walk through Blue Pine and rhododendron forests and enter Jigme Dorji Wangchuck National Park. Tonight we camp in Thangkthanka (3520 m).

Distance: 22 km, walking distance: 7 to 8 hours.

Day 4: Thangthanka to Jangothang:

We walk along the tree line and head into the high mountains crossing Tengethang, a home of the Yak Herders in winter. We arrive at Jangothang which is at an elevation of 4040 m. You can watch the beautiful sun set on Mt. Jhomolhari (7314 m) and Mt. Jichu Drake (6989 m).

Distance: 19 km, walking distance: 5 to 6 hours.

Day 5: Rest day in Jangothang:

7-Days-Bhutan-Trek

Base of Mt. Jomolhari.

We have many day-hiking options.

  1. Hike to Tshophu, a high-altitude lake about a two hour hike away.
  2. Hike towards the north to see the great views of Jichu Drake.
  3. The Third is to hike towards the direction of Jhomolhari.

Day 6: Jangothang to Lingshi:

The trails leads uphill from Jangothang, we cross the Nyile La pass at 4890 m. We may see herds of blue sheep. We camp at Lingshi (4150 m).

Distance: 20 km – 6 to 7 hours.

Day 7: Lingshi to Chebisa:

In the morning, we visit the Lingshi Dzong built in the 17th century. In ancient times, this Dzong was used to control travel between Tibet and Bhutan.

Today is a short walk to Chebisa at 3850 m. Distance: 14 km – 4 to 5 hours.

Day 8: Chebisa to Shakshepasa:

Jumolhari-Trek-(Round)

Jumolhari-Trek-(Round).

We cross the pass at Gombu La 4350 m we descend into a valley of rhododendron and cross the Yak Herders’ camp to Shakshepasa camp at 3980 m.

Distance: 13 km – 4 hours.

Day 9: Shakshepasa to Robluthang:

We start early today and cross Jhari La pass at 4747 m and decend to Tsharijathang. You can see herds of Takins, the national animal of Bhutan here. We then climb to Robluthang camp at 4160 m.

Distance: 18 km – 7 to 8 hours.

Day 10: Robluthang to Limithang:

Today also we start early with a difficult hike to Shinge La pass (5005 m). We descend to Lemithang and see Mt. Gangchenta (6840 m) and the glacial valley of Gangchhenta. Gangchenta is also called Great Tiger Mountain.

Camp at 4140 m. Walking Distance: 19 km, walking time:  7 to 8 hours.

Day 11: Limithang to Laya:

A trail follows a small valley and cross the forests. You can see some great views of Mt. Gangchhenta and Mt. Masang Gang (7165 m).

Camp at Laya at 3840 m. Distance: 10 km – 4 to 5 hours.

Day 12: Rest day in Laya:

Beautiful-Laya-Gasa-Trek

On the way to Laya.

We explore the Laya village of approximately 700 people with hospital, community school, some shops and archery field.

Day 13: Laya to Rodufu:

From Today, the real Snowman trek begins as we are headed for up reaches of the remote Lunana.

We camp at Rodufu at an altitude of 4160 m.

Distance: 19 km, walking distance: 6 to 7 hours.

Day 14: Rodufu to Narethang:

Today is a long trek; we cross Tsimo La pass at 4950 m and descend to Narethang, cross dwarf rhododendron. Then hike through the shadow of Gangla Karchung peak at 6395 m.

Camp at 4900 m. Distance: 16 km, walking time: 8 to 9 hours.

Day 15: Narethang to Tarina:

Today we climb to Karchung La pass (5240 m) and walk down to the glacial lakes. These lakes are fed by the mighty peaks of Jejekangphu Gang (7300 m) and Tsenda Kang (7100 m).

Camp at Tarina, 4020 m. Walking distance 18 km, walking time 5 to 6 hours.

Day 16: Tarina to Woche:

The trail passes through Pine forests, upper source of the Pho Chhu River. We walk down to the village of Woche at 3940 m. We have now in the Remote Lunana region.

Distance: 15km, walking time: 5 to 6 hours.

Day 17: Woche to Lhedi:

Snowman-Trek

Near Lhedi.

The Trail descends down to the Keche La pass at 4580 m and cross the Thega village. We camp at Lhedi village at 3600 m.

Distance: 19 km, time: 7 to 8 hours.

Day 18: Lhedi to Thanza:

We walk following the source of Pho Chhu to Chozo village and reach Thanza village near the foot of 7100 m Zogophu Gamp or the Table Mountain.

We camp at Thanza (4080 m).Distance: 19 km, walking time: 6 to 7 hours.

Day 19: Rest day in Thanza (4080 m) – Acclimatization:

Explore the village of Thanza.

Day 20: Thanza to Danji:

Near-Thorthormi-Glacier-Thanza-Snowman-Trek

Near Thorthormi Glacier, Thanza.

The trail today is a relatively steep and a short difficult climb till Jaze La pass to a campsite at Danji.

We camp is around 4600 m, with good view of the mountains.

Distance: 8km – 4 hours.

Day 21: Danji to Tso Chena:

We summit to Jaze La pass at 5050 m. From here, we walk downhill till the lake of Tso Chena (4800 m).

Distance: 12 km, walking time: 5 hours.

Day 22: Tso Chena – Jichu Dramo:

The trail climbs up and down and we cross the Loju La pass at 4940 m and descend down to Jichu Dramo at 4880 m.

Distance: 14 km, walking time: 4 to 5 hours.

Day 23: Jichu Dramo to Chukarpo:

Distance: 18 km – 5 to 6 hours

We climb Rinchen Zoe La pass at 5290 m, this is highest elevation of the Snowman trek. We walk downhill till Chukarpo just above the tree line at 4950 m.

Day 24: Chukarpo to Thampe Tso:

Thampe-Tso-Snowman-Trek

Thampe Tso.

We walk downhill along the river and climb the Um So Lake at 4230 m. It is believed that Terton Pema Lingpa discovered many religious treasures. We camp near the lake of Thampe Tso (4200 m).

Distance: 18 km, walking time: 5 to 6 hours.

Day 25: Thampe Tsho to Maurothang:

A short and steep walk to the Thampe La Pass at 4580 m. From here, it is all downhill till Maurothang camp at 3550 m.

Distance: 14 km, walking time: 5 hours.

Day 26: Maurothang to Nikachu and drive to Gangtey:

Gangtey

Gangtey Monastery.

A long and the last day of our trek. We walk down to the beautiful Sephu village and end the trek at Nikachu Chazam. Your vehicle will pick you up here and drive to Gangtey. We may also stop at the top of the Pele La pass (3400 m).

Dinner and overnight Hotel.

Distance: 23 km, walking time: 7 to 8 hours.

Day 27. Gangtey – Punakha (75 km. – 2 hour drive):

After breakfast, visit to:

  • Crane Information centre.
  • Gangtey Gompa Monastery built in the 17th

We drive to Punakha.

On the way, visit Chimi Lhakhang, built in 1499 by Lama Drukpa Kuenley, popularly known as “The Divine Madman.

In the evening, visit Punakha Dzong built in 1637 by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal which is situated between Pho Chu and Mo Chu.

Dinner and overnight in Hotel.

Day 28. Punakha – Thimphu (76 km. 2 ½ hour drive):

Dochu-La-Pass-at-3100-m

Dochula Pass at 3100 m.

After breakfast, drive to Thimphu.

  • We stop at the Dochula pass to view Higher Himalayas.

After lunch, visit to:

  • The National Memorial Chorten (1974) built in honour of our late King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck.
  • Tallest Statue of Buddha Dordenma in the world (51.5 m).

In the evening, visit to the Tashichho Dzong, seat of the national government and the Central Monastic Body.

Day 29: Thimphu – Paro (Departure):

After breakfast, drive to the airport and farewell.