Kashmir Great Lakes Trek, let’s us admit, is versatile. In the entire trekking in Kashmir, this trek is scenic and has variations in natural beauty. This trek offers not only mountains but meadows and lakes too. The meadows are both wavy and flat. It holds Kashmir’s largest alpine lake – Gangbal Lake. It has breathtaking snow-clad mountains and en route gives a view of some of the best peaks of Kashmir. This trek is a must when one thinks of trekking in India.
One of the best features of Kashmir Great Lakes Trek is that it is a combination of different valleys. In other words Kashmir Great Lakes Trek means traversing through different scenic valleys of Kashmir.
Here are the valleys and passes that make Kashmir Great Lakes Trek.
Kishansar/Vishansar Valley: This valley holds two beautiful alpine lakes of Kashmir Himalayas: Kishansar and Vishansar Lakes. The twin lakes rest at the hem of Kishansar and Vishansar peaks. The lakes have swarms of fish and the water drains towards Gurez valley. This valley has a route that takes to Gurez valley. One can see trout fish jumping in the streams. However angling is prohibited in these lakes and needs a permission from authorities if one intends to go for angling.
Main Attractions: Kishansar and Vishansar Lakes, Mount Vishu etc.
Gadsar Valley: After crossing over the Gadsar Pass, one descends into the Gadsar Valley. The trekker beholds a long lush meadows lined by mountain range. Along this mountain range rests Gadsar Lake – a pristine lake that is deep and serene. It is beleived by the people living in surrounding nearest villages that the water of Gadsar Lake has healing powers, but there are also myths surrounding this lake that make most of the trekkers averse towards getting closer to it.
Main Attractions: Gadsar Lake, Gadsar Meadow, Gadsar Peak, Yemsar Lake, Wild Flowers etc.
Satsar Valley: To reach this valley the trekkers don’t pass over any mountain pass but walk beside the hems of a chain of mountains and in a roundabout way traverse all day. It has lush green meadows that have both ascends and descends. This trail is easy to tread. It has no steep ascend or descend. For beginners, this day of the trek is relaxing and quite easy.
Main Attractions: Doobta Paani, Zajibal Pass, Meangan Doab Camp Site, Himalayan Animals like Marmots.
Gangbal Valley: From Satsar Valley, one crosses over the Zajibal Pass to reach Gangbal Valley. Among other lakes, Gangbal Valley holds two beautiful lakes- Gangbal lake and Nundkol Lake. This valley is famous for Mount Harmukh – a mighty mountain that feeds the two lakes. The mountain has religious significance and is visited by Kashmiri Pandit devotees once a year for blessings.
Main Attractions:Shoqsar Lake, Atmas Lake, Kaalsar Lake, Kulsar Lake, Gangbal Lake, Nundkol Lake, Mount Harmukh, Trunkhol Meadow.