ALAKNANDA 5 DAYS

RISHIKESH, UTTARAKHAND

2017 Trip Dates: Contact us to schedule your own trip! (min 4 people)

Cost: On request

Season: February-May; September-December

Description: The Alaknanda River is the second major tributary of the Ganga besides the Bhagirathi. It drains through the big mountains of Garhwal and has numerous mighty tributaries including the Mandakini, Nandakini and Pindar. A self-contained expedition rafting trip, it provides you the thrill of running one of the most technical and challenging white water in the Indian Himalayas, that has grade 4 to 5 rapids with loads of adventure to offer. The stretch between the Chamoli and Rudraprayag, is a classic river run where we negotiate over 75 to 80 grade 3 to 4+ rapids, including the grade 5 "Hillary Fall", named after Sir Edmund Hillary's up-stream jet boat expedition called “Ocean to Sky". Only a hand full people have rafted this section. Raft down this dream river run filled with adrenaline pumping rapids, sandy beaches, and big bonfires which makes this a truly unforgettable river journey.

Itinerary: The Alaknanda Upper Section (Chamoli-Rudraprayag)

Day 01: Arrive early morning at Haridwar. Drive to Rishikesh and check into a hotel. After breakfast we drive to the starting point of the rafting trip. Today we raft about 20km to Rishikesh and get familiar with paddling and safety techniques, negotiating the best rapids on the Ganga, like "Three Blind Mice", "Body Surfing", “Rollercoaster", “Golf Course", and a few small rapids for about 3 hours and prepare ourselves to take on the most challenging stretch Alaknanda River has to offer. We finish our trip short of Rishikesh and drive to the hotel. In the evening you can walk into the town to attend the evening prayer ceremony by the river. 

Day 02: In the morning after breakfast we drive 6-7 hrs to Kaldubagar, through the pilgrim towns of Devprayag and Rudarprayag. Stay overnight in a hotel/river camp. After settling in, there is a briefing on the river trip and the upcoming days. We pack stuff in dry bags and get ready for the next day. 

Day 03: An early start takes us to Chamoli. This is the most challenging stretch of the trip. At the put in we help in getting the rafts readied. A detailed safety briefing follows with instructions on paddling, rapids to be encountered etc. The expedition begins with a lot of grade 4/4+ rapids. Depending on the volume of water, we negotiate or walk around the "Hillary Fall", a rapid at Nandprayag. We call it a day at Kaldubagar after a long exhilarating day on the river. 

Day 04: Today we raft until Gauchar. Get ready for another exciting day on the river with plenty of grade 3/4 rapids. We raft pass the confluence of Pindar at Karanprayag. The Pindar River brings in more volume, adding punch to rapids to follow. We camp on a big sandy beach, settle in to star gaze around the bonfire and get a good night's sleep.

Day 05: After breakfast we get on the river and raft till Rudarpryag. Today the section is more "pool and drop" as compared to the start with plenty of grade 3/4 rapids. We reach the "Kakar Fall", a grade 5 rapid. After a thorough inspection of the rapid we negotiate or line up the rafts to enter the spectacular narrow box canyon. The canyon is narrow enough, about 15 meters, for a Kakar (deer) to leap across, that's where the rapid gets its name. Finish the trip after running the "Holy Hole", a grade 4 rapid. Drive back to Rishikesh. Transfer to Haridwar to board the evening train. Trip ends. 

Day 1: Rishikesh

Day 2: Rishikesh-Kaldubagar  

Day 3: Kaldubagar-Chamoli (River) - Kaldubagar 

Day 4: Kaldubagar - Gauchar 

Day 5: Gauchar- Rudarprayag - Rishikesh

 * Previous rafting and kayaking experience would help. This expedition requires a minimum of 4 committed rafters.