Traveller Fiesta in Frozen Spiti
Ring in the New Year in one of the most beautiful places in the world, Spiti – with a handful of likeminded adventure lovers, and of course, our kind of celebration, sharing stories, absolute beauty all around, and the most amazing star gazing or milky way galaxy you can see on a clear night, nothingness as far as you can see, and huddled together around a fire, thinking about life!
Spiti in winter is entirely transformed. Well, you need a lot more than wanderlust to begin with. It is both exciting and adventurous…. The high mountains, deep terrains, barren stretches, and patches of green are covered under a sheet of snow. Spiti in the winter is – a whole sea of white stretching into the horizon, smoking chimneys showing signs if a village, below freezing temperatures, monasteries everywhere, but unparalleled beauty that you behold! Yeah, that’s my idea of welcoming the New Year. Do this, and you would have a trip to talk about for years to come. This is for those who want to have crazy loads of fun, love adventure, and look forward to beginning the year with themselves in freezing winters…
This will be hardcore backpacking. The best part of being in Spiti in the winters is how the villages and people transform. You actually get a feel of how the traditional way of life must be for the locals. There are a handful of serious adventure people in the valley, which makes it zero touristy. The people welcome you home and have plenty of time to sit down with you for a cup of chai and a conversation. Sit back and enjoy the silence all around. This is going to be one of the most amazing trips of your lifetime; experiencing the valleys in its utmost beauty.
Backpacking is all about an important virtue – sharing. True to the way I live, this will be a true-blue backpacking experience. We will divide the cost of the whole trip among us all just as friends travelling together do. This would also give some perspective on travelling solo and how you can channelize your money effectively while travelling without compromising on experience
Fitness level required for this:
- Hardcore and experienced backpackers who have handled severe cold in the past
- Adventure enthusiast – as we want to give chance to new people too who have that adrenaline rush in them
Departure TimeAnytime during the day. We will start our journey early morning the next day.
Return TimeUnsure of the time. Kindly keep some buffer days and plan your return accordingly.
Dress CodeRead what to carry section
IncludedTraveller Fiesta in Frozen SpitiPersonal Guide
Not IncludedDeparture TaxesEntry Fees5 Star AccommodationBreakfast
Climate:October to March beginning is the perfect time to experience winter in Spiti – and we shall be there at its peak! During the day, it will be around 8 degrees, and at night it touches -10 degrees when snowfall is at its best! There will be least sunshine with mostly cloud cover, fog, and plenty of snow. At times, during December – January, the temperature at night falls below -30-degrees too. The frozen beauty of Spiti Valley is no less breathtaking than the summer, and you will lose yourself in its beauty from the very first sight of it. There will be snowfall, and at times hailstones hitting down on you also. So if you think you have it in you and are curious and love cold winters, the answer is to join me this New Year for an extended celebration in Spiti.
What to carry:Here’s a list of what to carry for your vacation to Spiti Valley during the winter. Despite the extreme cold, the experience can be exhilarating if you are equipped with the right gear.
- Rucksack with min. 50-60 litre storage
- Heavy windproof jacket
- 2 - 3 pairs of inner warmers / thermals
- 3 pairs of comfortable cotton pants / comfortable jeans (no torn jeans)
- Reliable waterproof hiking / sports shoes with a good grip
- 3 – 4 pairs of woollen socks
- Gloves – 1 pair of woolen gloves
- UV resistant sunglasses to protect the eyes from intense sunlight reflection off the snow
- Woolen cap (monkey cap)
- Woolen muffler
- An extra pair of shoes
- Sunscreen (SPF40 and above)
- Personal medicines
- Water bottle
- Power bank
- BSNL Prepaid / Postpaid SIM Card
Regarding itinerary:Spiti in the winters cannot have any fixed plans; as it depends on factors which are beyond control. It therefore helps to make impromptu plans with locals. In case of heavy snowfall, the locals cover distances to their villages on foot, and sometimes that may be the only possible way of travel in Spiti in winter. So we will not have any fixed itinerary. But we intend to follow these places – Rekong Peo, Kalpa, Nako, Tabo, Kaza, Ki ,Kibber and Sarahan depending on the weather condition.
- We would be travelling through icy mountains and freezing temperatures – lower Kinnaur valley tends to have bone chilling weather in the winters, which gets colder as we head to Tabo – but an unforgettable experience no doubt! – We all love to let our noses turn red and hug ourselves tighter!!
- True to backpacking and the undependable roads due to winters, our itinerary would be an ‘on the go’ kinda thing – so if you want to know what real backpacking is, in such weather, this shall be it – roads tend to close for days – you cannot backpack Spiti in the winter with a tight schedule to get back to work – you would need to keep aside some buffer time just in case you get delayed a bit
- Food would be cooked by locals and that too what is specifically eaten in the winters for the cold – this food is not served in the other seasons!
- Stay will be absolutely basic as most of the guest houses will be shut. We will stay in home-stays or small guest houses – this would gives the chance to understand their tough lives in the winter – these people have been cut off every winter for generations without access to food and other facilities – and yet survive in absolute joy – they have their own festivals too in the winters, and everyone spends a lot of time with one another – people of every household tend to sit around the kitchen for the warmth talking for hours on end about life and local news – it’s truly heart-warming to be a part of it
- There will not be any toilets as the water freezes. Dry pits folks! – you could use maybe some boiled water to wash your face maybe – but baths are out of question and being finicky about facilities will not do – It does make the whole experience much better and interesting!
- There wouldn’t be a lot of ATMs, rather hardly any – so you would need to carry cash that you may need
- We would be using local shared transport and public transport and we may walk on foot short distances just like the locals – this is what Spiti in reality is!
- During the winters, the route to and from Spiti via Kaza is from Shimla only. So in essence, you will be covering the same route from Shimla untill Kaza, and back. Hence I have planned a route to ensure that you do not stay at the same place while heading back from Kaza.
- There wouldn’t be easy access to electricity since the electric poles get buried under the snow – it is better to carry power banks – but you must remember to keep both warm as batteries freeze – the hack is to keep it inside your sleeping bag or under the wraps of the quilt – this applies to all electronic gadgets
- There wouldn’t be signal on your mobiles and devices in quite a few places – you will get spotty internet is come places. So, you can send Whatsapp messages to friends and family regarding your safety – calls would not be clear – trust me, it’s a great way to begin the year being cut off from all the techie stuff – this would be your moment, your space and time with yourself – you matter!