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Himalaya Gasa Laya Trek

HIMALAYA GASA LAYA TREK

Day Activity Place to be visited
Day-1 Arrival at International Airport. Drive to Thimphu Paro
Day-2 Drukyel Dzong to Shana Shana
Day-3 Shana To Soi Thangthanka Thangthanka
Day-4 Soi Thangthangka To Jangothang Jangothang
Day-5 Jangothang ,camp Jangothang
Day-6 Jangothang To Lingshi Lingshi
Day-7 Lingshi To Chebisa Chebisa
Day-8 Chebisa to Shomuthang Shomuthang
Day-9 Shomuthang – Rest Day Shomuthang
Day-10 Shakyapasang to Robluthang Robluthang
Day-11 Robluthang to Limithang Limithang
Day-12 Limithang to Laya Laya
Day-13 Rest day at Laya Laya
Day-14 Laya to Koena Koena
Day-15 Koena to Gasa Hot Springs Gasa
Day-16 Gasa Hot Spring Rest Day Gasa
Day-17 Ghasa to Goem Damji/Punakha Punakha
Day-18 Punakha to Paro for departure Paro
Included in this package
Accommodation (3-Star/twin sharing)
Bhutan visa fee
Government royalty & taxes
English speaking tour guide
Transportation
Sightseeing
Daily 3 meals (B/L/D)
Bottled water
Entrance fees
Not included in this package
Flights to and from Bhutan
Personal expense/shopping
Alcoholic Beverages
4 or 5 star accommodation (extra charges will apply)
Travel insurance
Tips for guide and driver

Laya Gasa Trek is one of the most beautiful treks offering incredible views of the pristine and unspoiled landscape of Bhutan. The trek starts from Paro and follows the route of Jhomolhari trek and Snowman trek to Lingshi and Laya respectively before ending the trek in Gasa valley, the valley famous for hot spring.

This trek offers not only a beautiful view of Mt. Jhomolhari, Jichu Drake and Tsherimgang along the way but also surprise you with indigenous animal such as Blue sheep and Takin, the national animal of Bhutan while taking you into a remote tiny village inhabited by Layaps, a distinct segment of Bhutanese society with unique culture, traditions and appearance.

This trek is one of the most difficult treks in Bhutan largely due to high altitude and steeply ascends and descends along the way.

The best seasons to embark on this journey are in April-June and Mid-September-Mid-November

Name of Trek Duration Place & elevation Best Months
Gasa Laya Trek 17nights/18days Paro, Thimphu Punakha & Gasa. Max.5100m April-June & September- November

Itineraries

Day 1 : Arrival at Paro International Airport

Arrival at Paro International Airport by Druk Air or Tashi Air. Upon arrival at Paro International Airport, our representative from Bhutan Yoedzer Travel will receive you and take you to the prearranged hotel, check in and lunch. You will now start the day by visiting the National Museum, housed in the- Dzong, (Once the watchtower for Rinpung Dzong), (Fortress), it was converted into the National Museum in 1968. The museum stands on a promontory overlooking the Paro valley in all its glory. Visit Paro Rinpung Dzong. A flagstone path rises gradually from a beautiful wooden bridge with shingle roofing and buttressed by two guardhouses of the Dzong.

Today, this massive fortress built in 1646 AD gave the best example of the traditional Bhutanese architecture and is the seat of the district administration as well as the home for to a monastic school of pro. The central tower (Utse) of the Dzong, with its superb woodwork, is considered one of the most beautiful in Bhutan.

Day 2 : Drukyel Dzong to Shana

We drive the winding road northwest up the Paro Chu to Drukyel, a ruined Dzong. This fortress, now a burned shell, was once strategic in Bhutan’s defense against Tibetan invasion. Mt. Chomolhari (24,500 feet), the sacred summit, reaches skyward beyond the Dzong. The road ends and the trek begin, following the river gently uphill through a narrowing agricultural valley lined with many farms.

The trail proceeds up a wide valley beneath forest-covered mountains. Bright red chilis dry on the farmhouse rooftops and wheat fields are golden and ready for harvest. The hike today takes us to our first camp in a grove of pines at Shana, which is at the confluence of two valleys. Camp

Day 3 : Shana to Soi Thangthanka

Time: 4 hours for lunch, 3 more hours to camp: We are up early this morning. After having tea and washing water brought to our tents, we deliver an early breakfast and are on the trail by 8:00 a.m. For many this is the most challenging day, due to both the uneven terrain and the length. The track leads us gradually up the river valley, passing farms and re-cutting across the river many times. The track runs up and down quite a routine and the footing is sometimes challenging with many river rocks along the way.

After tea, we climb about 300 feet to a small pass. The trail then levels out above the river and gradually winds down once more to cross a cantilever span. Later the bridge crossing, the trail goes up again and then divides. We take the left hand trail up towards the mountain; the trail to the right (past the chorten) heads to Soi Yaksa.

Our encampment is in a meadow about a stone shelter the government has built for trekkers. If the weather is clear, we should be rewarded with a sensational view of Chomolhari. Camp

Day 5 : Jangothang (Jhomolhari Base Camp) (13,288’)

Group members decide, separately, if today is a trek or “rest” day. There are stupendous day-hikes in three directions. Chomolhari and its subsidiary are directly west, Jichu Drake is to the north, and unclimbed summits and ridges are to the east. For those feeling the altitude or just interested in relaxing, one trek leader suggests sitting in camp and observing the shifting light on Jhomolhari… not a bad way to pass the daylight!

It is a beautiful spire peak, like the Matterhorn or Ama Dablam, but is almost completely snow-covered with spectacular hanging glaciers and huge series ready to come dashing downward. Camp

Day 6 : Jangothang to Lingshi

Time: 5 – 6 hours: Wide yak pastures line the path up and down the strait and, depending on the atmospheric condition, some yak herders may still be in their tents. Great views of Lingshi Dzong present themselves every bit we get down into the Lingshi basin. Tserim Kang and its descending glaciers are at the north end of the vale.
Today is the first day that we use yaks instead of ponies. (By keeping the yaks at the higher elevations, the yaks are able to remain better acclimated.) Since the yaks are slower than the ponies, we may get into camp before the yaks. Although there is a stone shelter with an indoor fire pit, it has no chimney and gets too smoky for most people… so we should be trusted to experience some warm clothes in our Daypacks for our arrival in Lingshi. Camp

Day 7 : Lingshi to Chebisa

Time taken: 3 – 4 hours. Today is a relatively easy day beginning with a visit to the Lingshi Dzong (if license is granted). On the path to the village of Chebisa, we’ll look out for more herds of the beautiful Blue Sheep. During the autumn, we’ll witness many villagers busily harvesting their fields and preparing for winter. The village of Chebisa is located in a truly picturesque scene. Beyond the grouping of stone and wood farmhouse, a dramatic rock rises at the far end of the valley; there is likewise a large cascading waterfall from the summit of the drop. Camp

Day 8 : Chebisa to Shomuthang

Time: 5 – 6 hours. A steep climb with breathtaking views takes us to the Gombu La (14,400′) where we should arrive just about lunchtime. The trail steeply descends for the first half-hour after arriving at the crack and then begins to flush out. We will fix up camp at the principal of the Shomuthang Valley. Camp

Day 9 : Shomuthang – Rest Day (13,035 Feet)

We will spend the day in Shomuthang. The day can be used to relax, catch up with laundry, or explore the environs of Shomuthang valley where numerous day hikes are possible. Camp

Day 10 : Shakyapasang to Robluthang

Time: 7 – 8 hours: An early start is critical today as we begin with the upgrade to the Jare La (15,565 feet). The track receives a steep initial climb for about an hour out of bivouac and then delivers a hard gradual climb to the toes. We will have lunch once we are over the pass and before our steep descent through a wood in the Tsharijathang Valley. It is here that herds of blue sheep are quite common and sightings of the rare takin are possible.  We will pass over two streams (over which there were log bridges in 1995… and they may still be in that location when we fall through) before our final ascent of approximately 45 minutes to our campsite at Robluthang. Camp

Day 11 : Robluthang to Limithang

Time: 6 – 7 hours. Another flip, the Sinche La (16,445 bases), pops out the day. A little walk on the ridge from our camp takes us to a steep climb to the top ledge of a moraine. We then gradually move up to the pedestal of the crack and then we hold a steep climb of approximately 1,500 feet that brings us to the Sinche La. The path is a series of yak trails that crisscross one another, so there is no “one” way. It is vital for trekkers to occasionally look ahead to find out where others are failing. If the weather is clear, we will have great vistas of Mount Gangcheta (22,300 bases). Later we get to the pass, we head down a steep route, cross another log bridge spanning a little river and walk a bit farther to our camp at Limithang. Camp

Day 12 : Limithang to Laya

Time: 4 – 5 hours. The trail meanders upward and downwards along the river until we go, up up to Laya, one of the most typical villages in Bhutan, located along a shelf. As with most villages in the high Himalaya, cultivation is difficult. The villagers are semi-nomadic and rely on yak herding for a living. They spend most of the year in black tents woven from yak hair, but also build Drystone-walled homes, which dish up as a shelter during the coldest months and as storehouses for the commodities and grains that they barter with the central valleys.

The women of Laya wear unusual conical bamboo hats, aqua and coral jewelry and (unlike most women in Bhutan) long hair. Most villagers are busy in the fall cultivating or harvesting crops of turnips, mustard and barley. Camp

Day 13 : Rest day at Laya

Rest day at Laya

Day 14 : Laya to Koena

Time: 5-6 hours. Descending from Taksimakhang through the craggy peak-lined valley, the rocky trail follows the Mo Chu (river) through a heavily forested area to Koena. There is a wooden hut with a fire pit which we can use. Camp

Day 15 : Koena to Gasa Hot Springs

Time: 7-8 hours. The day begins with a long climb to the Bale La (13,050’) and then continues up and down until we reach Gasa. Nearly an hour of walking down the steep trail brings us to a hot springs, where you can enjoy a long-anticipated soak. (Be forewarned that this day can be very muddy if it is raining.) Camp

Day 16 : Gasa Hot Spring Rest Day

Gasa Hot Spring Rest Day

Day 17 : Ghasa to Gem Damji/Punakha

Time: 5-6 hours. A morning soak (for those who get up early!) before we rise out of the valley and onward over an up-and-down track. Although our address is lower than our beginning spot, the day entails a fair quantity of climbing. Depending on the season, this arena is usually where leeches are encountered. Then drive to Punakha for 2 hours. Hotel Overnight.

Day 18 : Departure

Our representative will contact you to Paro International Air Port

Accommodation

There are many hotels in Bhutan general clean and up to the standard of tourists. Hotels in Bhutan are being rated by the Hotel Rating System like other countries.

Bhutan Yeodzer Tour, Treks and Travel puts you up within the best offered hotels in Bhutan

Pema Wangchuk,
General Manager
Bhutan Yeodzer Tour, Treks and Travel, Paro , Bhutan
Post Box No:1202
Email:pemasedi@gmail.com
Office # + (975) 08270243, Mobile # + (975) 17722329