Exploring the Snow Leopard’s capital !!
About the Tour:
Snow Leopard (Scientific name : Panthera uncia) is the king of Snow capped Mountains in Himalayas. It is listed as endangered by IUCN. It is one of the most solitary, elusive, rare and endangered predator in the world and few resorts say that only a few hundred are left in wild. This spirit of mountains has adapted himself to survive in the harsh climate of Himalayas and hence casual sightings are extremely rare.
Snow leopards in heavy snowfall tends to move downwards where it can prey on local animals and hence chances of sighting one becomes more in month of Feb to April. Later in summers you will find them at the highest peaks in the snows, and hence tracking becomes difficult. We at Mumbai Travellers will be exploring Snow Leopard territory with the local experts who help in tracking down the snow leopards for various video documentaries that we see on Television and internet. The group will also be escorted by a resource person from our wildlife division, so that sighting this solitary animal becomes easier.
Mumbai Travellers welcomes you to the most challenging and unique wildlife expedition of the world – The great snow leopard expedition. After a lot of research and piloting we have finalized that for the year 2018-19 we will be conducting this expedition at Hemis National Park near Leh for it is by far the most potential destination to sight and photograph this rare big cat. Winter is a great time to sight snow leopards for they migrate down to the lower altitudes chasing their prey and gives us ample opportunities to track one. Kindly make a note that it is a limited edition expedition and hence available on first come first served basis. Kindly find the details of upcoming expedition below:
Photo Credit : Mr. Ranganathan
SHORT INFO & DATES
Batch 01 : 26th Feb – 7th March 2019
Category : Wildlife
Duration: 10 Days / 9 Nights
IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT SNOW LEOPARDS :
Snow leopards are slightly smaller than the other big cats but, like them, exhibit a range of sizes,generally weighing between 27 and 55 kg (60 and 121 lb), with an occasional large male reaching 75 kg (165 lb) and small female of under 25 kg (55 lb).They have a relatively short body, measuring in length from the head to the base of the tail 75 to 130 cm (30 to 50 in). However, the tail is quite long, at 80 to 100 cm (31 to 39 in), with only the domestic-cat-sized marbled cat being relatively longer-tailed. They are stocky and short-legged big cats, standing about 60 cm (24 in) at the shoulder.
Snow leopards have long, thick fur, and their base color varies from smoky gray to yellowish tan, with whitish underparts. They have dark grey to black open rosettes on their bodies, with small spots of the same color on their heads and larger spots on their legs and tails. Unusually among cats, their eyes are pale green or grey in color.
Snow leopards show several adaptations for living in a cold, mountainous environment. Their bodies are stocky, their fur is thick, and their ears are small and rounded, all of which help to minimize heat loss. Their paws are wide, which distributes their weight better for walking on snow, and have fur on their undersides to increase their grip on steep and unstable surfaces; it also helps to minimize heat loss. Snow leopards’ tails are long and flexible, helping them to maintain their balance, which is very important in the rocky terrain they inhabit. Their tails are also very thick due to storage of fat and are very thickly covered with fur which allows them to be used like a blanket to protect their faces when asleep. ( Info source: Wikipedia )
Flight Suggestions :
Date From To Airline Arriv Dep 26 Feb’19 Mumbai Leh Airindia 05.55 AM 10.20 AM Date From To Airline Dep Arriv 07 Mar’19 Leh Mumbai GoAir 11.30 AM 16.15 PM
Day 1- 26th Feb- Reaching Leh
You will board your flight to Leh. You will be met upon arrival in Leh and then get transferred to your hotel. The rest of day can be spent at leisure for acclimatization. In the evening, spend some time in the Leh bazaar. Overnight stay will be at the hotel in Leh. Acclimatization is compulsory in order to get used to the High altitude and low oxygen level condition.
Day 2- 27th Feb- Leh to Ule village. Exploring Icy Zanskar River
A winter trek over a frozen river! Early morning we will drive down to Ule and will experience the walk on the frozen river. Will reach Ule by lunch time and overnight stay will be at the hotel in Ule. Stay will be in homestay.
In the evening, we can explore the Life at Leh on our own and meet up again for the yummy dinner.
Day ends with some more fun and games with new friends.
Day 3 – 28th Feb- Exploring Ule valley
The day to explore the beauty of Ule landscape and is also known for the elusive snow leopard sightings. Keep your observation skill on point as you can see different kinds of wild species like Urial, Agrali and Tibetian Antelope.
Day 4 – 01st March – Half day Leopard Tracking. Back to Leh
You will explore Ule till afternoon in search of the elusive cat and post lunch after resting will be heading towards Leh. Will enjoy the bonfire with some information sharing session followed by dinner. Overnight stay will be at the hotel in Leh.
Day 5 – 02nd March- From Leh to Zinchen and Trek to Rumbak Village (Trekking time: 5-6 hours)
After breakfast at Leh, we proceed to Hemis National Park.
We hike alongside Indus towards the Zingchen Gorge from Phey Bridge. After reaching a height, we can see the awesome habitat of Hemis National Park where snow leopard resides. Be alert, as it is difficult to spot them. We will be scanning all part of the cliffs and below the rocks where they normally rest, it is a tough task to spot them and this is where the experience of our seasoned spotters comes in to the picture. Stay alert and enjoy the view of the wildlife. Overnight at Rumbak homestay.
Day 6 – 03rd March – Rumbak Valley Exploration
The next three days are dedicated to trekking around Hemis National Park in Quest of snow leopard. Besides, Snow Leopard you can also spot Blue sheep, Argali, various migratory birds and also Tibetan Wolf. Snow Leopards are usually easy to sight in winters compared to other months, as they descend to lower elevations. But all depends on your luck and tracking skills! Later, after returning to the camp, hot tea will be served with some great experience of the day to share and cherish. Overnight at home stay at Rumbak.
Day 7 – 4th March – Turhan Valley (Depending upon the sighting reports)
Turhan Valley is yet another place to spot the snow leopard and again we spend our day trekking in search of the elusive cat. Overnight at home stay at Rumbak.
Day 8- 5th March- Rumbak- Urutse (Depending upon the sighting reports)
Today will be exploring Yurutse and Gondala Pass Base, which is also known for its Ibex sightings. Overnight at home stay at Rumbak
Day 9 – 6th March- Urutse to Zinchen and back to Leh
Trek down the valley to reach Zinchen. It will take about 5 hours. We will be trekking slowly scanning and exploring past familiar Snow Leopard territories. After that we return back to Leh. Take some rest and spend the rest of the time at leisure.
Overnight stay at Leh.
Day 10 – 7th March- Arrival at Delhi/Mumbai
Depart early morning for Delhi/Mumbai and tour concludes with some great photographs and memories to cherish.
We at Mumbai Travellers assure you that your memories will be full of beautiful moments and you will take back these memories to share with others.
Tour Cost : Rs. 80,000/- per member+ Tax as applicable
For Registered Members : Rs. 79,000 per member + Tax as applicable
For Lifetime Membership Details (Rs.1000/- only), click here
1. 3 nights accommodation in deluxe property in Leh on twin sharing basis (Heater facility) – Hotel Mahey retreat or Similar
2. 6 nights stay in homestay Ule/Rumbak & Urutse on twin sharing basis (Equipped with Bukhara-local fireplace )
3. All meals during the trip – Except 04 lunch at Leh
4. Porter charges for Ule & Rumbak
5. Service of an expert naturalist, wildlife spotter & cook
6. Surface transfers as per plan by tempo traveler
7. Wildlife permit fees
8. Wildlife & Photography Expert
1. Airfare from Mumbai to Leh or return
2. Any insurance
3. Any medical expenses or emergency transfer at Leh
4. Any beverages
5. 4 lunch at Leh
6. Any porter if hired other than provided
7. Anything other than mentioned in inclusions
8. Variation in cost arising because of change in taxes by the Indian Government
9. Variation in cost arising because of natural calamities, unavoidable circumstances, political issues like riots etc.
Who should do it?
1. Those who have passion for big cats should definitely do it.
2. Those who are fascinated by the beauty, charm and amazing survival skills of the most rare to spot wild cat of world – The Snow Leopard
3. Those who love nature, love exploring variety & surprises of nature and those who wish to enjoy the amazingly unique Himalayan wildlife and its habitat.
4. Those who want to Photograph snow leopards, but also understand that it is very difficult to spot one in such conditions.
5. Those who are fit enough & understand that trekking in such high altitude and extreme weather conditions is an adventure and involves risk.
Who should not do it?
1. Those who are looking for assured or guaranteed sightings and photographs of Snow Leopard
2. Those who are focused only on snow leopard and will not be able to come back smiling even after successfully completing this expedition, having had lot of fun, after sighting rare & unique wildlife of Himalayan ecosystem except the Snow Leopard.
3. Those who have above 100kg of body weight.
4. Children below 18 years of age.
5. People suffering from Blood pressure problems, High altitude sickness, Asthma, Fractures or any other medical ailment which will make it difficult to trek in such conditions.
For More FAQs, please visit this link : https://www.mumbaitravellers.in/faq/
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