Day 5 began with another lovely morning in the Himalayas at Gadsar. We were given permission to hike farther to Satsar, and on this particular day, we chose to hike the mountains directly in front of us. Continue hiking to the other side of the mountain range. Climbing all the way up is too difficult, so we detoured, and strolling through the meadows was well worth it. This was followed by inclement weather. The cold temperature and heavy rain made our hike quite difficult. We crossed Satsar Lake by going around it, which looked more like a marsh, and eventually arrived at the Satsar campground. After a long day, we enjoyed a wonderful evening close to the creek.
Early in the morning, wake up to see the mist and snow-covered mountain summits. Your campsite is located deep in the valley rather than on a mountain summit. We were stranded at this campground for over two days due to severe rain. We cannot return to the beginning point to abandon this journey because we have already crossed the Gadsar pass; the only option is to walk farther and complete the expedition. Enjoy the stunning dawn photography surrounding the campground and prepare for day 5 of the Kashmir Great Lakes trip.
Previously and how to reach Satsar?
If you have not gone through the previous 4 days of trekking posts then don’t forget to go through these links:
The alternative option is to begin at Naranag, a camp for a day near Harmuk mountain, and then cross the pass around Satsar. Essentially, the trial that I will be discussing over the following two days.
Crossing the dangerous Crevasse
The fifth day of hiking begins with a crossing of an ice patch bridge over a very cold creek. The water force/current was excessively strong, maybe because it had poured for two days straight. We were fortunate to notice the massive crevasse in the show patch bridge, which may be really dangerous. I made it around this massive crevasse and into the opposite side of the creek.
Ops! Wrong turn and trail
This is followed by a difficult hour-long ascent. There is a tiny route, and one false move on a rainy day with a slippery trail can be disastrous. We resumed our trek. There was some debate over whether to go farther up or stay on the same path. We just kept going for another half kilometre before realising it wasn’t the path and having to go back and climb up on a separate track. The incorrect route, on the other hand, was worth the walk because of the scenery we could see from there.
The magnificent view
Beautiful landscape with mountains all around covered in meadows, and in the Himalayan mountain slopes, you will discover many little houses and a few pine trees, with smoke rising out of these huts, making this spot even more attractive. That would have been a fantastic shot for a photographer. Even though it was pouring, I managed to grab a few images. The streams on the opposite side of the mountains resembled waterfalls.
We returned to our original track and proceeded on our journey. On the slopes, you could see a few shepherds with their sheep and goats. We paused for a few minutes at one point, more like a viewpoint. This is when the valley below divided in two, one to the right and one to the left, where we needed to go. The scenery from here was breathtaking; I’d never seen such massive mountain ranges as the Himalayas before.
Stream cuts through the mountain with no exit
After then, it was more of a level trek up the mountain slopes. We went further, and there was another stream where the water entered the mountain, with no idea where the exit is. The water penetrates the mountain more like a train entering a tunnel, but there is no way out. I inquired with locals about the location of the exit, and each had their own storey. I wish I had more time to spend exploring this location. It was pouring severely outside, so I kept my cameras inside.
The enormous Satsar Lake
We pushed on, it continued to rain severely, and we were eager for some form of cover. We ate our packed lunch at an abandoned hut before continuing our journey. The Satsar lake comes next, which is made up of more than five lakes yet looks to be an one enormous lake. We resumed our journey in the rain, using a level path and hiking up and down the massive rocks. Satsar lake may seem better from above, and a drone photo would have been great. Unfortunately, this is a no-fly zone for drones. So, if you’re going on the KGL hike, don’t even think about getting a drone.
After navigating all of these stones, we arrived at a little spot of ground near the Satsar lake and camped close to the stream. On three sides, the campground is surrounded by mountain peaks, and on one side, you can see the depth and the mountains below. This is the most magnificent vista since you can see the peaks hiding in the clouds below. We were seated on top of a flat stone, a bit distant from our campground, with a hot cup of soup. A wonderful spot to unwind and see nature’s splendour.
Wonderful evening spent outside
We were fortunate that the rain stopped and our cameras could be used again. Most of the time, shortly after the rain, you can anticipate a clear sky for a short period of time, and I wanted to take advantage of this. We ate supper early since it was around four degrees outside at night. We spent some time outside our campground, capturing some long exposure night images. In majority of the long exposure images, the moon seemed to be the sun.
Even though it was pouring fiercely, it was another great day. Almost every minute of the Kashmir Great Lakes trek was enjoyable for me. The Great Lakes Trekking is something that everyone should undertake at least once in their lives. It is well-known for its stunning scenery and is an ideal location for professional photography. Consider viewing the video below to get a visual tour of the entire trail as well as the lovely campsites. The next day, we went on a trek from Satsar to Gangbal, which included some breathtaking scenery and a great perspective of the twin lakes.
You may find the complete details on all days of Kashmir Great Lakes here. Hope you enjoyed reading this blog post. Buy me a coffee to support my work or you can go to my store to buy some of my images. Also, do not forget to join my FriendZone by signing up for my newsletter. Consider subscribing to my YouTube channel.