The Snowman Trek is an extension of the beautiful Laya Gasa Trek, and leads from Laya into high altitudes of the Bhutanese Himalayas. It takes tough and enduring trekkers into the Lunana region and further on to Gangkhar Puensum and Bumthang or down to Sephu in Trongsa district, depending on which route you choose.
This is the most difficult trek in Bhutan! The official snowman trek starts in Paro, and leads via Lingshi and Laya to the remote Lunana in northern Bhutan. From there you can either reutn to the lateral road at Nikka Chhu, or continue to Bumthang.
If you start from Paro, then it is about 24 days, including a rest day in Laya. You can cut off a few days by starting in Punakha; then it is minimally 19 days. We took 20 days from Punakha, including a rest day in Laya (better is to rest at Rodenphu), and Thanza. The last night we slept at the road in Nikka Chhu, you could save a day by driving back to Thimphu right away.
The window for good trekking on the Snowman Trek is extremely small: the only time you have a chance of good weather is the first 3 weeks of October. Although the official season extends longer, if you go at any other time, you’ll either get very wet, snowed in, or both. We started on October 1 from Punakha, and had great weather. We even didn’t see any leaches.
The Snowman trek in Bhutan is one of the hardest high altitude treks, but an incredible experience for anyone who wish to take the great challenge. Trekking into the remoter northern Lunana region is to step back to the 7th century when Buddhist had just reached the land. Passing Buddhist monasteries and small villages on the back dropped of Himalayan peak, we will witness a land unchanged for hundreds of years.
What To Pack?
Apart from the necessities, one needs for a successful trekking trip, there is not much that one needs to pack in terms of clothing and such. The weather during the peak season is often quite pleasant and doesn’t require for you to carry the extra burden of clothes which is pretty amazing too.
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