Exploring the Majestic Triund: A Trekker's Delight

best trek to Triund

Nestled in the lap of the Dhauladhar ranges, Triund is a beautiful Himalayan trek that offers mesmerizing views of the surrounding mountains and valleys. At an altitude of 2,975 meters, Triund trek is the perfect place for both novice and experienced trekkers looking for a moderately difficult trek near McLeod Ganj. The 9 km uphill trek to Triund takes you through dense rhododendron and oak forests, gurgling streams, and verdant meadows. The spectacular scenery and the promise of camping under a starry night sky make Triund an extremely popular trekking destination. Here is a complete guide to help you plan your Triund trek.

Getting to McLeod Ganj

The trek to Triund begins from McLeod Ganj, which is located around 9 km from Dharamshala in Himachal Pradesh. McLeod Ganj is well-connected by road and air. The nearest major airport is Gaggal Airport in Kangra, around 15 km away. Taxis and buses are easily available from the airport to McLeod Ganj. You can also take an overnight bus from Delhi to McLeod Ganj. Many tourists also drive down from cities like Chandigarh, Shimla, and Manali.

top treks to Triund

Once you reach McLeod Ganj, take some time to soak in the quaint Tibetan vibes of the town. Visit sights like the Dalai Lama Temple, Bhagsunag Temple, and Waterfall, and the small cafes dotting the streets. You can also browse through the markets to buy trekking gear and equipment. Spend a night acclimatizing and preparing for the trek. The trail to Triund starts from the Galu Devi temple in Upper Dharamkot, which is around 2 km from McLeod Ganj.

The Ascent to Triund

The trek to Triund is 9 km long one way and usually takes 4-5 hours. Start early in the morning to avoid the harsh sun later. The trail is steep but well-defined, so take your time and enjoy the stunning views. The initial 5 km stretch consists of switchbacks through dense oak and deodar forests. Listen to the soothing sounds of crickets and cicadas as you make your way up. Stop frequently to sip water and munch on snacks to keep your energy levels high.

top trek from Triund

After the first 5 km, the forest opens up to reveal gorgeous rhododendron trees and shrubs. Their bright red blooms in spring are a sight to behold against the blue skies and verdant landscape. You will also pass through two lovely cafes, the Magic View and Snowline Cafe, where you can relax your legs and grab a hot cup of tea. Beyond the cafes, the ascent gets steeper but the paths are lined with pretty wildflowers. The last 1 km is a relentless climb over the rock-strewn trail. But press on determinedly and soon you will reach the top, welcomed by the first glorious views of the snow-capped Dhauladhars.

Revelling in the Splendour of Triund

The sublime Himalayan panoramas make all that effort worthwhile. Find yourself a comfortable perch and just sit back drinking in the sweeping views. To the east, the Indrunag and Deo Tibba peaks dominate the scene. The sharp pyramidal peak of Indrunag rising above the Kamrunag Lake makes for an exquisite frame. To the north is the dramatic ridge-line of the Dhauladhars, capped by snow even in summer. With its stark cliffs, the iconic Hanuman ka Tibba stands tall nestled among the peaks. And below you lies the striking Kangra valley, dotted with villages and criss-crossed by rivers.

best treks from Triund

As the sun goes down, the colours change to burnished gold, infusing the mountains with an otherworldly aura. Wherever you turn, a majestic Himalayan panorama unfolds. The interplay between sunlight and shifting shadows on the mountains is spellbinding. Stargazing on clear nights reveals endless constellations overhead.

trekking to Triund

You can also head to the ridge east of Triund where the views open up even more. Spend a magical night camping under the twinkling stars and wake up to a spectacular pink and orange dawn breaking over the mountains.

The Abode of Snow: A Walk to Laka Got

For the adventurous ones, Triund can be the base camp for an additional steep trek to a higher meadow called Laka Got at 3,500 m. It takes about 1.5 hours to reach Laka Got, which rewards you with even more stunning vistas. Since you are now above the tree line, the path is quite steep over scree and slippery snow.

trekking from Triund

But it is an otherworldly walk as you enter the 'Abode of Snow', surrounded by snow-covered peaks on all sides. Tiny wildflowers like Primulas and Buttercups sprout around you, defying the barren terrain with their colour. Turn around to see Triund now far below you. Finally, you will reach Laka Got, a wind-swept high-altitude meadow dressed in white snow even in May. Spend some time immersed in the magnificent snowscapes before heading back down.

Descending from Triund

After a rejuvenating night of rest and recovery at Triund, it's time to head back down the way you came. Give your knees a break by using the hiking stick on the descent. Stop at the pretty hillside cafes again for sustenance. Once you cross the rhododendron section, it's an easy walk downhill through the shaded forest trail.

Triund trek guide

The beauty of the Dhauladhars stays with you as you make your way back. On the way, you can also visit the Bhagsu Nag waterfall to soothe your tired legs. End your memorable trek on a sweet note with delicious Tibetan tulpas, momos, and pancakes in McLeod Ganj.

The Best Time for Triund Trek

The ideal season for the Triund trek is from February to June and September to November. Winters can be frigid with chances of snowfall. The monsoon months of July-August witnessed landslides and slippery trails. The post-monsoon spring blooms in March-April or pre-winter autumn in October-November are particularly pleasant times for the trek. Prepare accordingly with proper gear, clothing, and essentials! Avoid the midday heat in summer by starting very early.

best treks to Triund

A successful trek requires careful preparation and packing of the essentials. Here is a Triund trekking checklist to ensure you have a safe and comfortable journey:

  • Trekking shoes: high ankle waterproof shoes with good grip and ankle support. Break them in before the trek to avoid blisters.
  • Woollen socks: carry at least 2-3 pairs of warm woollen socks. Avoid cotton socks that absorb sweat.  
  • Trekking pants: lightweight, quick-dry pants are ideal. Denim are not recommended as they get heavy when wet.
  • Quick-dry t-shirts: full-sleeve t-shirts protect from the sun. Avoid cotton shirts that won't dry fast.
  • Fleece jackets: carry at least one thick, warm jacket for the cold nights and early mornings.  
  • Waterproof jackets: it can drizzle unexpectedly in the mountains. A waterproof, breathable jacket will protect you.
  • Woollen caps and gloves: essential for the chilly breeze at high altitudes. Keep your head and hands insulated.
  • Sturdy trekking pole: provides support on steep sections and takes pressure off your knees during descent. Adjust according to your height.
  • LED headlamp: helps navigate the trail in the dark. Handheld flash lights are not convenient.
  • Sunscreen, sunglasses, hat: guard against sunburn and snow blindness at high altitudes.
  • Toilet paper: carry a roll as there are no toilets on the trail. Dispose responsibly away from water sources.
  • Hand sanitizer: Maintain hand hygiene when there is no water available. Also, carry disposable tissues.
  • First aid kit: band-aids, ointment for blisters/cuts, pain relief spray, etc. Know how to use them.
  • Snacks: carry high-energy snacks like dry fruits, protein/granola bars, chocolate, etc.
  • Water: at least 2 litres of water in insulated bottles. You can refill at the cafes midway.  
  • Backpack: a 30-40 litre backpack with hip straps is ideal to distribute the weight.
  • Sleeping bag: essential for spending a night at Triund. Get one rated suitable for sub-zero temps.
  • Mats: provide cushioning from the hard ground and insulation from the cold.
  • Toiletries: toothbrush, toothpaste, toilet paper, sunscreen etc. Carry biodegradable soaps.
  • Extra clothes: comfortable slippers, warm jacket, extra pair of socks and inner wear.
  • Emergency supplies: torch, lighter, Swiss knife, emergency blanket, basic medicines, phone charger, etc.
  • Plastic bags: separate wet clothes and trash in plastic bags to keep the backpack organized.

With the right gear and supplies, your experience will be comfortable and safe. Avoid carrying unnecessary items to reduce weight. Rental shops in McLeod Ganj also provide most items if you want to travel light.

Acclimatization and Altitude Sickness

Since Triund is located at a high altitude of 2,975 m, it is important to acclimatize properly to avoid altitude sickness. Here are some tips for acclimatization:

  • Sleep at a lower altitude like McLeod Ganj the night before your trek. 
  • Ascend slowly and take breaks. 
  • Avoid over-exertion. 
  • Keep yourself well hydrated. 
  • Avoid alcohol or smoking a day before and during the trek. 
  • Have light, protein-rich meals. 
  • Avoid heavy, greasy foods. 
  • Carry Diamox if prescribed by your doctor as it aids acclimatization.

Look out for symptoms of altitude sickness like headaches, nausea, dizziness, and shortness of breath - inform your trek leader immediately if you experience any of these! Descend to lower altitudes and avoid strenuous activity. Seek medical help if symptoms persist or worsen. With proper acclimatization, you can safely enjoy the majestic beauty of Triund.

What about you, have you been trekking to Triund? Feel free to share any tips & advice below!

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We overland. We eat plants and fungi. We live outside as much as possible. We are all connected. A female travel blogger overlanding and writing about ecotourism, ethical and sustainable travel, socially conscious travel and housesitting. An online travel magazine since 2015.


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