Trekking in Himalayas - Trek to Sunderdhunga Glacier

In the southern Himalayas, located at the heart of Kumaon hills, the Pindar valley in Uttarakhand is known for its three glaciers: Pindar, Kafni and Sunderdhunga.

The river Pindari gets its name from the Pindar valley. It originates from the Pindar glacier which is another popular spot for trekkers and tourists. The trek to all three glaciers shares a common route up to Khati.
Maktoli Range, part of the Kumaon Hills
Maktoli Range, part of the Kumaon Hills
The Sunderdhunga glacier proves to be an excellent retreat for trekkers and nature-lovers alike. Situated on the right side of Pindar valley, it is one of the lesser known glaciers of the Bageshwar region. Teeming with mountain flora and fauna, it is

This trek finds oneself navigating through rocky terrain, with stones and boulders of various sizes all around, which is actually where the valley got its name "Sunderdhunga" from. “Sunderdhunga” literally translates to “beautiful stones”.

Indeed the stones and slippery tracks of hardened ice add a bit of challenge to the trek, and paired with the distance, this journey is one for seasoned trekkers.

Although the climb can be a bit challenging, being surrounded by snow-capped peaks of tall Himalayan Mountains, the view is nothing short of breathtaking. The pristine snow on gigantic monolithic mountains provides a picture-perfect scene, invigorating your body right to your very bones. The peace and calm of the valley resonates with your very soul.

Tharkot (6100M), Mrigthuni (6856m), Maikotli (6804m) and Pawali Dwar (6663m) are the main mountain peaks in the area that one ought to keep an eye out for.
Sunderdhunga Valley
Sunderdhunga Valley
TREK ROUTE

The trek starts at Bageshwar, from the base camp at Song.

From Song, one travels to Kharkiya via Loharkhet. (The newly built road that connects the two eliminates the tiring climb to Dhakuri.) from where a short 5km hike leads up to Khati village. While walking from Khati to Jatoli, one crosses the Pindar Bridge. This landmark bridge overlooks the Sunderdhunga river joining the Pindar River as it flows towards Garhwal. The trail then progresses to Kathaliya through a rocky path and one has to face challenging terrain.”Kathali” in local dialect means “mountain goat” and as one reaches Kathaliya it becomes evident why it was named so, because huge herds of goats swarm over the meadows, a patchwork of brown over the underlying green. Moving on to the Maktoli base camp, one encounters lush green meadows from where the Baluni peak is visible.Navigating through the glacial gorges and walking through loose mud zones, one heads for Baluni top which overlooks other peaks like Maiktoli and Tent peak. The return trek follows the same route taken while ascending.
Baluni top as seen from Kathaliya valley
Baluni top as seen from Kathaliya valley
 ACCESSIBILITY
Proper roads connect Bageshwar to all other major cities of Uttarakhand. The nearest train station is Kathgodam (180km) while the nearest airport would be at Pant Nagar (206 km)