Karambar Lake Trekking Guide: One of the most amazing scenes that any tourist can find is that of a lush green valley giving way to snow clad mountains which are covered with snow the year round, and in the middle of that amazing valley, a lake which is aquamarine like a jewel glistening in the sun. This description fits the Karambar Lake exactly one hundred percent. This is one of the highest biologically active lakes in the world and it is the second highest lake of Pakistan. The Lake is one of the most amazing sights that tourists can see in Pakistan and many tourists take the time and make the effort to visit this this astounding lake every year.
Karambar Lake’s Geography
Karambar Lake is situated in one of the most beautiful valleys of Pakistan, the Ishkoman Valley. The valley is located in the Ghizer District of Gilgit–Baltistan province. The elevation of the lake is 4,304 meters i.e. 14,121 feet. This makes it the thirty first highest lake in the entire world and the second highest lake in the entire country. The location of the lake is in the Gilgit Baltistan area but is almost 205 kilometers away from the town of Gilgit. The deepest parts of the lake may go to the depths of 55m while the area of the entire lake is almost 2,634,400 meters square.
Best Time To Visit Karambar Lake
The lake is a biologically active lake that means it will not freeze over, but the best time to visit the lake is when the season is open and there is no snow near or on top of the lake. This allows the lake to shine in its full glory. Almost all tours that go to the lake try to plan their stay in such a way that they reach the lake within the time window of 20th of June to 20th of August. However, recently seasons have changed a little bit and snow does not thaw till the end of May. So, it will be better to go to the lake between the first week of July and the first week of September.
Karambar Lake Trekking Guidance
Any trip taken to the lake will be a full hiking tour which may take up to ten days. Given below is the tour plan for a trip which is for medium hikers who can handle some of the difficult hikes, but they are not able to exert themselves as professional hikers who are able to climb mountains like K2. If the trip is of professional hikers they can take out two of the stops.
The trip departs from Chitral and reaches Mastuj where they set up the first camp.
The trip will depart from Mastuj with only light breakfast. They will reach Lush and take brunch here, then depart for Kashmanja where they will camp for the night.
The trip will depart from Kashmanja with full breakfast and they will hike the full day with only a few short stops to catch breathe and rest. By the afternoon they will reach Ishkarwaz and camp here for the night.
The group will travel from Ishkarwaz to Showrsheer and camp there for the night. This will bring them within walking distance from the lake. Expert hikers can take the journey to the lake within one day by only resting at Showrsheer but it is recommended that the group camps here for the night.
The group will trek from Showrsheer and reach the lake in the afternoon.
The trip should stay at the lake for one day in order to enjoy the lake and the scenery around it. A full day is, therefore, recommended for staying at the lake itself.
The group will travel from the Karambar Lake to the town of the Lashker Warz and they will camp there for the night.
The group will travel from Lashker Waz to Chikar BC and camp there for the night. Experienced and professionals can go straight towards Darkot Base but it is recommended that only one journey is undertaken in one day by amateur hikers.
The hikers will trek from Chikar BC and reach Darkot BC where they will camp for the night.
The last stage of the journey is from Darkot BC towards Rawat. This will be done through the amazing Darkot Pass. Hikers will Camp at Rawat, or they may continue to Chitral and hire a jeep from there in order to stay at a hotel.
Karambar Lake Trek Precautions
A hiking trip to the Lake is going to be a full hiking tour, therefore, complete precautions should be taken and all members of the group should know basic survival skills.
- Make sure all group members are in good physical condition. Do not include anyone with injuries as they will be aggravated during the travel
- Make sure all the equipment is in good condition. The equipment must include good weatherproof rucksacks, tents, good fly sheets, food, stoves, batteries, pegs, carrying bags, and day packs. Hikers will need warm clothes, sun protection like creams and hats, good shoes with sturdy grip and weatherproof jackets.
- All members should travel together and try to stay with each other. Do not try to make anyone walk faster than he is going as it may injure a member.
- Make sure all the people in the group hydrate themselves during the trip. This is crucial as dehydration can cause death.
Karambar Lake’s Nature Reserves
While traveling towards the lake, the hikers will be able to see and observe many species of the wildlife that are common to the area like marmots, Marco polo sheep, Markhor and Deer. However, they may also see some special and endangered species like the brown and the black bear, the famous Ladakh Urial and the Himalayan lynx. There are many birds in the area that come for nesting and breeding during the warm months, and so hikers should be careful not to disturb any nests that they may find. Most easy to see will be the warblers and the buntings, as they’re most easy to spot. While the red starts may also be seen, it is only possible if they are nesting nearby.
As the lake is active, there may be fish in the lake which may of various different species.
The trek towards the lake will be full of wild flowers and the small shrubs that grow in the local areas with wither berries or flowers. It is advised not to eat any berries without being sure what they actually are.