Gomukh Trek - Gomukh Tapovan Trek - Source of Ganges - GIO Adventures

Source of Ganges Trek


DAY 01: Dehradun – Gangotri (3100 m) Drive/255 kms/9-10 hrs 

We will meet at a predesignated point in Dehradun at around 7:00 a.m. and from here we board a vehicle and drive up to Gangotri. This is a long but very beautiful drive specially after Uttarkashi as you enter the upper Bhagirathi valley. We check into a guesthouse/lodge at Gangotri and savour the spectacular surroundings. In the evening visit the mother Ganga (Gangotri) temple and take a stroll in the Gangotri market. You can do your last minute shopping here if you have missed out on carrying any items. Overnight in the lodge.

DAY 02: Gangotri (3100m) – Chirbassa (3600m) Trek /3.5 -4 hrs 

After breakfast, set out on the trek towards Chirbassa. This trek is mostly on even terrain with mild gradient. The views of Sudarshan peak early in the trek is quite nice. Today’s hike is a very pleasing one with interesting sights throughout.  The forest campsite at Chirbasa next to the Ganga river is a fabulous spot and one is going to completey enjoy the camping experience here. The area is surrounded by Pine (Chir) trees from where it gets its name. Overnight in tents.

DAY 03: Chirbassa (3600m) – Bhojwasa (3800m) Trek /2-3 hrs 

After breakfast, we continue ahead to Bhojwassa. The area gets its name from the bhojpatra or bhoj leaves that were used for writing purposes as paper during the ancient times. The walk from Chirbasa to Bhojbasa is a short and delightful one. Today you get very good views of the Bhagirati peaks and the Gaumukh glacier ahead. Bhojbasa is a very small settlement with a couple of ashrams and govt. guesthouses. After a brief rest at the campsite and lunch we suggest that one hike up towards Gaumukh and return to the campsite towards evening. This will assist in acclimatization and give one great opportunity to take pictures. Dinner and overnight in tents.

DAY 04: Bhojwasa (3800m) – Gaumukh (4100m) – Tapovan (4463m) – Bhojwasa Trek /7 -9 hrs 

After an early breakfast we start on our hike to Gaumukh and from there to Tapovan. Today’s trek is a challenging one and gets difficult as the gradient increases after Gaumukh. Getting to Gaumukh will take around an hour or so we will spend some time here and take blessings of the Ganga ma(mother). Sight of the source of Ganges or rather the source of life for many, is a truly spiritual experience. From here we will have to traverse the gigantic Gangotri glacier to cross over to the other side and climb up to tapovan. The route has changed from what it used to be couple of years back and that’s why the distance is more now. All the sweat and hardwork of reaching Tapovan is rewarded manifolds as one this is a spectacular bugyal (high altitude meadow) situated at the base of the Shivling peak and is surely one of the top places to visit across Himalayas. The circle of giant mountains around this meadow with very close views of Bhagirathi peaks, Mt. Meru & Mt.Shivling is a sight to behold. After spending some time exploring the meadow we will trek back to Bhojwasa. It’s a complete downhill till Gaumukh and from here it’s a gradual walk all the way to Bhojwasa. Overnight in tents. 

DAY 05: Bhojwasa –   Gangotri – Uttarkashi  Trek/3-4 hrs Drive/ 

After breakfast we will trek down to Gangotri. We will have hot lunch at Gangotri and after that we will board the vehicles and drive to Uttarkashi. Overnight stay in a hotel.

DAY 06: Uttarkashi  – Dehradun Drive/235 kms/8-9 hrs 

After breakfast drive back to Dehradun. TRIP ENDS HERE. 



  • Professional guide(s) to ensure high safety and more information and personal attention which are necessary to appreciate a trek. All our guides are professionally trained and have many years of relevant experience in guiding treks.
  • Accommodation in a deluxe mountain lodge in Harsil on single/double occupancy basis (www.himalayanecolodges.com/harsil.php). This lodge has an absolutely fantastic location and very good quality facilities and services.
  • High quality Camping arrangements
    We believe that roughing it out necessarily doesn’t mean sleeping in smelly sleeping bags, compromising on safety by using low quality equipment and having unappetising meals. We focus on your safety, basic comforts and the environment while camping. Keeping this is mind, the following equipment is provided on the trek:
    • 3/4 season imported alpine tents
    • Fresh and clean sleeping bags of very good quality
    • Good quality Camping Mattresses
    • Camping stools
    • Mess Tent
    • Toilet tents (2) with portable toilet seats
    • First Aid / Medical kit.
  • All meals starting from dinner on Day 1 till breakfast on Day 6. A lot of emphasis is given to nutritional needs and a menu of vegetarian dishes is prepared accordingly. Tea/coffee will be served throughout.
  • Porter/mule charges for carrying camping equipment & rations
  • Forest entry charges, permits & camping fee (if any)
  • First aid kit (our guides are certified in handling first aid situations)


Do keep in mind that transport is a very critical component of your trek. This aspect is most often not given proper attention and can result in lot of discomfort especially in the mountains. We provide transfers to get you to the starting point and back as comfortably and in as less time as possible for you to enjoy the trip. We only use quality vehicles like Toyota Innova, Mahindra Xylo, Mahindra Scorpio, Tempo Traveller, etc. and no local jeeps or similar vehicles are used except where there are short transfers from the lodge to the trek points, etc. The transport tariff includes all driver charges, fuel, parking, toll and taxes.


  • Porter/mule charges to carry your personal bag
  • Any meals/services not mentioned above
  • Any charges for video cameras, still cameras, etc.
  • Alcohol, soft drinks, beverages, etc.
  • Personal expenses like tips, telephone calls, laundry, etc.
  • Any costs arising out of unforeseen circumstances like landslides, road blocks, bad weather, etc.
  • Insurance
  • Service Tax


  • Charges for a porter/mule to carry personal bag throughout the trek (not more than 10 kgs) per person for the complete trek. If you want us to arrange for portage of your personal luggage you can book the same by selecting the option of Personal Luggage Charges.
  • Personal trekking gear
    You can save on buying expensive trekking equipment for the trek by hiring the same from our gear store. High quality equipment is provided at reasonable rental/sale and you are assured of clean equipment that has been checked for its efficacy.




Windproof, Water resistant Warm jacket (with hood)


Down jacket (for additional warmth)


Lightweight & Warm Fleece pullover


Warm Gloves


Waterproof Trekking boots




Rucksack (60 ltrs)


Waterproof gaiters


Warm high-length woollen socks




Trekking poles


*Cost in INR per day

*Taxes extra


  • All payments for the trip(s), transfer(s), gear(s), porterage, etc. should be made in full before the trip starts.
  • Cancellation Policy:
    • In the event that you need to cancel your booking due to any avoidable or unavoidable circumstances:
      • We must be notified of the same in writing. Cancellation charges will be effective from the date we receive the request in writing.
      • Payment for this trip will not be adjusted towards any future trip(s)
    • Cancellation charges will be as follows:
      • >45 Days: Full refund (after deducting any expenses that have been incurred for hotel bookings, transport, etc.)
      • 30-45 Days: 75% of trip cost will be refunded (after deducting any expenses that have been incurred for hotel bookings, transport, etc.)
      • 15-30 Days: 50% of trip cost will be refunded (after deducting any expenses that have been incurred for hotel bookings, transport, etc.)
      • <15 Days: No refund
    • Please Note:
      • Written cancellation will be accepted on working days (only). Any cancellation sent on a Sunday or any National Holiday(s), will be considered on the next official working day.
      • In the event of any cancellation(s) after trip commencement, there will be no refunds and any costs incurred due to this cancellation will be borne by you.

Irrespective of when a trip is booked, the above condition will hold true.


Transport Options (Delhi – Dehradun – Delhi)

For travel to Dehradun and back one can choose between air, rail & road. For air travel, the closest airport is the Jolly Grant Airport (at Dehradun) and is well connected to Delhi and other parts of the country by Air India, Jet Airways, Kingfisher Airlines & Spice Jet.  Train travel is highly recommended with enough options being there. For train details, you could log on to www.indianrail.gov.in and for online railway ticket bookings you could log on to www.irctc.co.in .

There are frequent Public Transport buses including Volvos available from Delhi to Dehradun that cost about Rs. 200-500 per person. These buses depart from Delhi ISBT every 30 mins. or so and take about 7 hrs to cover the distance. The same is also applicable on the return journey. A private vehicle could also be arranged for if you require the same.

Weather Details

In the initial days of the pre monsoon season (May-Jun) there can be some snow along the trail which generally melts by the end of May. Days are going to be sunny and warm (12-20 °C) while the night temperature at the highest campsite would be in the range of 0-8 °C. In the monsoon months this area generally experiences rain but it is rarely of the torrential variety. In the upper reaches it just drizzles and that too not very occasionally. Temperatures around this time are almost like the previous months. In the post monsoon season (Sep – mid Nov) there is hardly any snow at the start with possibility of snow towards the end of the season, which also melts very fast. The days are sunny with temperatures hovering around (10-18 °C) the evenings start getting cold with the onset of October and nights are comparatively colder (- 2 to 8 °C).

Please keep in mind that the above information is not exact and does not account for sudden changes. Whatever the temperatures and conditions rest assured we will be prepared to handle it with ease as we use equipment of very high specifications.

List of Essentials

It is very important for this adventure trip that you need to be equipped properly and with a bit of back up. Mountain/adventure travel requires one to be adequately equipped with the right kind of personal gear. Since one is travelling in the wilderness there will be hardly any opportunity to buy anything once you hit the trail so we urge you to carefully pack everything into your bags. Also please keep in mind you can rent out or purchase equipment from our Gear Store, if required.

  1. Shirts / T-shirts – 2/3
  2. Warm shirt/light micro fleece pullover/full sleeve T shirt
  3. Trekking Pants (water resistant/repellent & having inside lining for extra warmth) - 2
  4. Windproof/water resistant outer shell (jacket) of good quality (no flimsy wind cheaters please!) with a proper hood
  5. Down jacket with min 600 fill power rating
  6. Thick Fleece / Full-sleeve Woollen sweater
  7. Thermal inner wear (upper & lower)
  8. Woollen cap (Balaclava)
  9. Inner fleece gloves
  10. Outer water proof gloves
  11. Thick woollen socks & regular socks (4 – 5 pairs)
  12. Scarf/muffler (optional)
  13. Comfortable waterproof (Goretex) Trekking/Hiking shoes (shoes with a thick sole and high ankles are recommended)
  14. Camp shoes (these can be easy to slip in sneakers/sport shoes)
  15. Gaiters
  16. Raincoat / Poncho
  17. Small light weight towel
  18. Insulated water bottle & hydration pack (optional)
  19. Cap / floppy hat to keep the strong sun away from your face
  20. Sun glasses with UV protection and ability to cut the glare (imp when traversing through snow)
  21. Sturdy walking stick / Trekking pole
  22. Sunscreen Lotion
  23. Lip Balm
  24. Torch / Flashlight (with extra batteries)
  25. Medicines, if requiring any specific medication
  26. Personal toiletries
  27. Book, if you like reading
  28. Day pack/small bag which you will carry on your back every day and keep your essentials in it
  29. Carry rain cover for your bags
  30. Keep a few poly bags or waterproof bags in your bag in which if required you can put your belongings in case of heavy rain
  31. Camera if you like (with fully charged batteries)


Carry your stuff in a duffel bag, soft shoulder bag or a rucksack. Avoid suitcases, trolleys or any other hard luggage. As you will be walking long distances carrying a rucksack, avoid bringing unnecessary items on the trek. Please avoid carrying expensive watches, jewellery and electronic items on the trek.

NOTE: In case you are planning to put your bag on a mule or taking a porter please get a duffel bag or rucksack and keep it in mind that there is a possibility that the bag at times might brush against a rock or a tree and get slightly damaged so don't get very expensive bags. Also in case of damage we shall not be held accountable.

Our Trekking Code

We are mountain lovers and have pledged to bring no harm to them in our pursuit of running organised wilderness travel in the Himalayas and seek your assistance too in this regard. We are more than convinced that one can have more fun on a trip if we go about it in a way that no harm is caused to the ecology. In this regard we have a set of guidelines that we adhere to based on the tenets of 'Leave No Trace' & 'Tread Light' policies. These guidelines are very simple and emphasise on travelling in small groups, better planning, understanding impact of camping, proper waste disposal, respecting local cultures, sensitivity towards wildlife and so on. We have a complete section on our trekking code in the 'GIO trekking Manual'. This manual will be couriered to you once you confirm a trip with us.

Acclimatisation & high altitude sickness

This is one of the most important aspects of travelling in the high Himalayas and cannot be ignored or set aside. Acclimatisation basically means our body adjusting to lower levels of oxygen (rarefied air) & reduced air pressure as me move up. In case one does not acclimatise properly there are chances of the person facing extreme discomfort and this can be fatal in extreme cases. While there is no set route to getting properly acclimatised there are a general precautions and steps that one can take to initiate good acclimatisation. Our trekking guides will assist you with these steps and also once you book a trip with us the 'GIO Trekking Manual' which will cover this aspect extensively will be couriered to you. This is sure to help you enjoy the trek in very good shape.

Selecting the right trek & training for it

Most important thing is to select the right trek keeping in mind your experience or inexperience, health, objectives & ability. Our senior team people can assist you with this, so when contacting us do mention if you need guidance on this front also refer to our trek grading system mentioned below. Once the right trek is selected comes your preparation. Once you have booked a trip with us we will courier the 'GIO Trekking Manual' to you which will have a complete practice drill explained in details.

Trek grading system

We have broadly classified our treks as below:

Easy These treks are 3 to 5 days long and involve walking for about 3/4 hrs daily. The trail on such treks is well defined but not always flat. These are great for families and first timers

Moderate On these treks one is not required to trek for more than 5/6 hrs a day. Also the terrain is not too difficult. These treks are normally a week or so long. For these treks prior trekking experience is not necessary. Very rarely on these treks would one camp at altitudes higher than 3800m. These treks are great for first timers or for veterans wanting to go on a trail which is relatively less demanding

Moderate+ These are moderate treks with mostly one difficult day. These trails are fine for fit beginners also.

Vigorous On these treks one can be required to trek continuously for more than a week through remote areas and at times trekking for more than 7 hrs a day. On most of these treks one has to cross passes or areas which are snow covered and involve camping at altitude of more than 4000m. Fit people with some kind of hiking experience & a spirit of adventure can contemplate going on these trails.

Strenuous These treks apart from having continuous trekking stretches are at places technical and might require assistance from trip leader/guide and other staff people. All these treks have rest days in between. Also all of them involve crossing passes or areas having altitude of more than 4500m. First timers are discouraged from walking such routes.

Expedition Style These involve long walks at high altitudes at times around 6000m. Camping can also be well over the snow line and on glaciers at times. Safety ropes, ice axes and crampons might be required on these treks. These treks are not technically very difficult but are considerably challenging. Previous vigorous/strenuous trekking experience is required.


Great Indian Outdoors (P) Ltd. takes utmost care to ensure safety of its clients. However in the case of any unforeseen mishaps, Great Indian Outdoors (P) Ltd. will not be liable for any injuries caused or for loss of life. All disputes rising due to the above are subject to the jurisdiction of the courts in New Delhi/Delhi only. All participants would be required to sign an Indemnity Form before the start of the program, without which they would not be allowed to take part in the trip/program/activities.

06Days | May -Jun, Oct - Nov| Vigorous| Max Alt: 4,463mts (Tapovan)

Sketch Itinerary

Day 01: Dehradun Gangotri(3100 m) [drive/255 kms/9-10 hrs]
Day 02: Gangotri(3100m) Chirbassa(3600m) [trek /3.5 -4 hrs]
Day 03: Chirbassa(3600m) Bhojwasa(3800m) [trek /2-3 hrs]
Day 04: Bhojwasa(3800m) Gaumukh(4100m) Tapovan(4463m) Bhojwasa [trek /7 -9 hrs]
Day 05: Bhojwasa Gangotri Uttarkashi [trek/3-4 hrs drive]
Day 06: Uttarkashi Dehradun [drive/235 kms/8-9 hrs]


This trek tracing the source of the holiest river in the country, Ganges, takes one into a Himalayan landscape par excellence. This trek steeped in spirituality and Himalayan grandeur takes one into a very remote and true Himalayan landscape. On this inviting trail there are big mountains, high altitude meadows, a sacred & mighty river, holy temples, great campsites, sadhus, occasional wildlife and more. You begin the trek at Gangotri, which is bustling with pilgrims, sages and sadhus (holy men) who have journeyed here to pay homage at the source of the Ganges.

The spiritual intensity of Gangotri, one of India's most sacred pilgrimage sites, is palpable as you witness the daily puja at the temple, and the Hindu devotees bathing at the water's edge.

The trail starting from Gangotri gradually and beautifully moves up to an inviting patch of pine (chir) forest at Chirbasa. There are fantastic views of the open valleys and Sudarshan peak to begin with. The campsite at Chirbasa is extremely scenic with all elements presents. There is the Ganga river flowing by, big snow capped giants & rocky cliffs all around and a beautiful pine forest over it. In the next stage we move up to Bhojbasa which gets its name from Bhojpatra trees (silver birch) that grow here. the hike from Chirbasa to Bhojbasa is a short one but has beautiful sights all along. In the next stage we trek towards Tapovan, enroute we halt at Gaumukh (Cows mouth), said to be the Source of the Ganges. One sees water gushing out of a snout-like opening and towering rocks and the thick chunks of hardened ice of the glacier. The awe-inspiring view is no doubt revered by one and all!! One can catch a glimpse of sadhus taking a dip here as part of their penance as it is believed that a dip in these holy waters washes away ones sins. As you weave your way from Gangotri to Tapovan, every twist in the trail reveals another stunning snow-clad Himalayan giant. The meadows at Tapovan must rate as one of the most awe-inspiring spots in the world, as you gaze at the Shivling peak rising like a great deity before you and not to mention the twin Bhagirathi peaks and the Meru peak. For the greedy, who are still not content with the beauty, the Tapovan region offers numerous exploration options. in the last stage of the trip we hike down to Gangotri and drive down to Uttarkashi from where we drive down to Dehradun on the last day

This is a great trek for both Fit First Timers as well as seasoned trekkers

Duration 6 Days
Region Uttarakhand - Garhwal,Uttarakhand

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