Alpine Garden Society



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NORTHWEST INDIA 2014 - A TOUR FOR THE ALPINE GARDEN SOCIETY BY GREENTOURS

INTRODUCTION
Codonopsis clematidea Rubbing shoulders with the fabled flower-rich valleys of Kashmir and mysterious arid lands of Ladakh, the Indian State of Himachal Pradesh contains a diverse selection of flora within a leech-free slice of the high Himalaya. It is replete with its own spectacular peaks topping 6000 metres including 6220 metre Indrasan that rears up close to the bustling hill station of Manali. Here there are slopes hosting the elegant emerald spathes of Arisaema jacquemontii and pink Iris milesii, rocks covered with the lovely Roscoea alpina, and higher passes thronging with alpines now the snows have finally receded.

 

This tour will follow a circuit north via the Rohtang Pass where we’ll find the ravishing purple Primula macrophylla var moorcroftiana, Iris kemaonensis whose reddish-purple falls are dotted blue, and tall green-flowered Fritillaria roylei. Above Marhi are ledges festooned with sweet-scented Primula reidii, dwarf pink Primula reptans, the choice and delicate Paraquilegia anemonoides, pure blue Meconopsis aculeata and the amazing woolly ‘balls’ of Saussurea gossypiphora, surely one of the ultimate high alpines. Slightly lower down are cerise Rhododendron lepidotum and the white bells of Cassiope fastigiata, the deep purple pea Thermopsis barbata, and the handsome yellow-flowered Morina coulteriana and pale pink aging to deep pink Morina longifolia. From here we move onto the higher, drier valleys bordering Ladakh towards the breathless 5100m Baralacha La, past stands of Aquilegia fragrans and rocky stream-sides with Geranium regelii and the lovely woolly-leaved pink Waldheimia tomentosa. We’ll also spend time in the Baspa Valley and some superb high passes for Lilium oxypetalum, gorgeous blue-flowered Geranium wallichianum, Cortusa brotheri and tall golden-yellow Pedicularis bicornuta. Here is also the magenta Pedicularis siphonantha another of a range of beautiful louseworts. An extension takes a short trek onto the Nalgan Pass in search of the stunning Corydalis meifolia var. violacea, Saussurea simpsoniana, Primula stuartii and many other choice high alpines.

 

INFORMATION
Saussurea gossypiphora Focus

Himalayan Flowers. Mountain Landscapes, Birds, and a little Culture.

Leaders

Chris Gardner and Basak Gardner

Walking

Usually quite easy with three or four miles a day the norm, a little more on some days such as one of the days on the Rohtang Pass, though always at a relaxed pace, ideally suited to photographers. There are some steep slopes and the ground varies from nice turf to rocky. Having said this many of the plants are roadside. On the Twin Passes Trek much more demanding with three days each with walks of between 800 and 1000 metres (reaching altitudes of 4600m or so) with descents of the same magnitude.  Paths will be steep in places, with some rocks, scree and possibly snow patches.

Included in the Price

All flights. Accommodation, transport, meals and tips in India. Services of your leaders. Please note; items of a personal nature including travel insurance, drinks and Indian Visas are not included.

Group size

Minimum group size is 4 and the maximum is 15.

Accommodation

After a night at the modern Park Hotel in Delhi we’ve three nights near Manali where we’ll stay in the large suite-sized chalets of the Raison Neerlaya. The rooms have very good facilities and the setting by the river is lovely amid large landscaped grounds with good birdwatching. Our base for exploring the Rohtang Pass will be the Tashi Deleg Hotel at Keylong where we’ve three nights. The rooms are large, light and comfortable. Next are two nights at the pleasant Sarai Resort a few kilometres outside Kaza and this is followed by two nights at the Sangla Resort, a colonial style guesthouse set amid apple orchards.  And then back to Delhi for a night at the Park Hotel. Those on the extension have three nights fully-serviced camping on the trek before a night in Sangla and thence to Delhi for the final night in the Park Hotel. All rooms on the main tour have en suite facilities.

Climate

Generally warm and sunny, but above 4000m it cools down quickly and can be cold. We can expect to have rainfall for a time on a number of days.

How to Book

Contact us on 01298 83563 or enquiries@greentours.co.uk to check there is availability for the number of places you require. Download a booking form (or contact us and we will send a booking form or full brochure to you). Complete and send to us. You will receive confirmation of your place and then a detailed information pack will be dispatched to you about twelve weeks before departure. Flower and bird checklists are available.

Flights

UK return flights are from London Heathrow to Delhi. Other indirect routes from regional UK Airports* are available.

*These routes may incur a supplement.

Trip Reports

Call 01298 83563 or visit www.greentours.co.uk for the latest trip report.

Gallery

For a selection of stunning images from Greentours leader and photographer Chris Gardner, visit the Northwest India Gallery on the Greentours website.

 

 

 

TOUR SUMMARY
Mecanopsis aculeata Day 1  

Arrive Delhi

Day 2  

Flight to Chandigarh and then to Manali

Day 3

Jalori Pass

Days 4, 5 & 7

Rohtang La

Day 6

Baralacha La

Day 8

Kunzum La & Spiti Valley

Day 9

Pin Valley & Ki Gompa

Days 10 & 11

Sangla, Chitkul and the Baspa Valley

Day 12  

via Shimla to Chandigarh and flight to Delhi

Day 13

Departure

Cedar view Twin Passes Trek

Day 12

to Rangalti Camp

Day 13

Rupin Pass

Day 14

Nalgan Pass O/N Tents

Day 15

to Sangla

Day 16  

via Shimla to Chandigarh and flight to Delhi

Day 17

Departure

 

For your detailed tour itinerary call 01298 83563 or visit www.greentours.co.uk.

DATES & PRICES
Allium carolinianum 13 days

27th June – 9th July 2014

Price London - London = £3795

Price Delhi - Delhi = £ 3215

Deposit = £250

Single Supplement = £560* 

 

Twin Passes Trek

9th – 13th July 2013

Price = £695

Single Supplement = £110

*does not apply if you are willing to share and a room-mate can be arranged

Waldheimia tomentosa Greentours have been running superb botanical and wildlife tours for two decades. Visit our website for details of this and our other tours. 

Ian Green
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