Stok Kangri

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Stok Kangri
Stok Kangri western flank.jpg
Stok Kangri as seen from the north west flank
Highest point
Elevation 6,121 m (20,082 ft) [1]
Coordinates 33°59′10″N 77°26′33″E / 33.98611°N 77.44250°E / 33.98611; 77.44250Coordinates: 33°59′10″N 77°26′33″E / 33.98611°N 77.44250°E / 33.98611; 77.44250
Geography
Parent range Stok Range
Climbing
First ascent 1951
StokKangripic.jpg
Stok Kangri (the highest peak) seen from Leh.

Stok Kangri (6,153 metres (20,187 ft)) is the highest mountain in the Stok Range of the Himalayas in the Ladakh region of north-west India. The peak is located in Hemis National Park,[2] 12 km southwest of the trailhead (3,610 metres (11,844 ft)) in the village of Stok and around 15 km southwest of the city of Leh, the capital of Ladakh.

Despite its high altitude, Stok Kangri is a popular trekking peak and is often climbed as an initial non-technical foray into high altitude mountaineering. However, the difficulty of Stok Kangri is often underestimated and the need to acclimatise before and during the ascent makes Stok Kangri an enduring challenge.[3][4][5]

In late July and August, all but the top of the peak may be snow-free. The elevation data was verified by GPS readings from 11 satellites at the Summit during a late July 2007 joint Nepalese-US expedition which encountered snow cover for 85% of the final four-hour, four km, 900 metre climb. Another GPS reading provided a 6136-meter elevation.[6] The shortest route to the peak is along the Stok valley, following the Stok Chu to Stok village.[7] This valley's grazing landscape, especially near the village, was devastated by the 2010 Ladakh floods, the most severe in decades.[8]

Ascent[edit]

Over the last few years, Stok Kangri has become tremendously popular amongst trekkers and novice mountaineers due to its non-technical nature. The peak is considered non-technical from July–August, but becomes quite technical during the height of winter. Even in summer, novices should be well prepared, with appropriate physical fitness and equipment. The climb is exhausting and requires a good amount of stamina, both physically and mentally.[9]

Despite its relative ease, the 6,153 m peak presents the usual challenges of a mountaineering expedition. Acclimatisation in Leh, particularly for those who fly in from Delhi, before attempting the trek/climb and altitude acclimatization during the ascent, is essential. The biggest hurdle at such altitudes is rarefied air, which can cause acute headaches, nausea and other symptoms of altitude sickness even in fit climbers.[3][4][5]

It can take anything from two to five days to reach base camp (4,980 metres (16,339 ft)) from the village of Stok, depending on acclimatisation schedules and fitness levels.[10] The summit day lasts 8–14 hours, ascending over 1,000 metres (3,281 ft) from Stok Kangri's base camp to its summit.[11][12]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Aitken, Bill (2003). Footloose in the Himalaya. Orient Blackswan. p. 188. ISBN 9788178240527. 
  2. ^ "Hemis National Park on Google Maps". Retrieved 2016-10-28. 
  3. ^ a b "Trek up Stok Kangri – one of the world's highest climbable mountains". Retrieved 2015-07-16. 
  4. ^ a b Arjun Majumdar. "Why the Stok Kangri trek in Ladakh is meant for the experienced trekker". indiahikes.com. Retrieved 2016-10-28. 
  5. ^ a b Nick Allen. "Stok Kangri: A Different Kind of Success". www.masteringmountains.org. Retrieved 2016-10-28. 
  6. ^ "Stok Kangri GPS Measured". nalajcie.org/2013/09/23/stok-kangri-trekking/. 23 July 2013. Retrieved 26 January 2018. 
  7. ^ Partha S Banerjee (2016). Ladakh and Zanskar Trekking Map (Map). 1:175,000. Milestone Himalayan Series. Kolkata: Milestone Books. ISBN 978-81-903270-9-1. 
  8. ^ "Ladakh Floods & Climbing Mountains, India – August 2010 | Stephen Cunliffe". www.stevecunliffe.com. Retrieved 2016-10-28. 
  9. ^ "Trekkers Guide for Stok Kangri". www.thefreebird.net. 
  10. ^ "How to Climb Stok Kangri (6,153m), Leh and organise it yourself". Oscar Boyd | Journalist | Fukuoka & Japan. 2017-10-18. Retrieved 2017-10-21. 
  11. ^ "Stok Kangri". himalayadestination.com. 
  12. ^ "Stok Kangri – Itinerary". www.jagged-globe.co.uk. Retrieved 2016-10-28. 

Loram, C., 2004, Trekking in Ladakh (3rd Edition), India Trekking Guides, Trailblazer Publications, 304 p., ISBN 978-1873756751.