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This is a round trek starting from Islamabad going to Karomber Lake via Chitral, cross Karomber and trek down to Yasin village in Gilgit-Baltistan and continue to Islamabad on Karakakoram Highway
Broghil valley is a remote mountainous valley in the Chitral district of province Khyberpakhtunkhwa. It is a narrow long valley. Broghil valley is located around 250km away from Chitral city.
From Mastuj a jeep-able road takes one full day to reach Lashkargaz (4×4 jeeps can go to Lashkargaz as of late 2018) village. Broghil valley receives 5-6 feet snow in the winters hence communication is cut off with the rest of the county. In summers, the valley is full of grass with plenty of water streams, which join the Yarkhoon river. Life in upper stretches of the valley is very hard as there is not much land for cultivation. Yaks is the favorite animal of the area because of the cold weather. By end of August people start cutting grass in order to stock it for winters. The valley is a home of many wild animals e.g. bears, marmots, snow leopards, foxes etc.
The area is mostly mountainous tracts. Elevations range from 3,280m at Kishmanjah village to 4,304m at Karamber Lake aslo known as Qurumbar lake in northeast. The terrain is undulating, with steep mountains, wide stretch grassy plains and narrow valleys.
Depends on your arrival time
This is one of the most amazing trek in Pakistan, in this trip we will take you to one of the most remote valley “Broghil valley” where the Wakhi speaking people live. Here you can stay with the local families and experience their culture and living style. After spending few days here we will start the trek to Karomber Lake
Arrival at the airport in Islamabad, our guide and driver will meet you here and take you to your hotel.
Today we have a bit long drive so we will start our day early in the morning. We will pass through some small towns like lower and upper dir and cross the Lawari pass and descending to Chitral Town. Arrive and transfer to the hotel
Today we have a beautiful drive through the narrow starting from Chitral and pass through small beautiful villages of Chitral and Upper Chitral district. We will have some short stops en-route for photography and lunch, arrive in Mastuj and transfer to the hotel
Drive to Yarkhun by 4WD jeeps, enjoy the jeep ride. Arrive and fix the tents for overnight stay.
From Ishkarwaz, we will cross the flowing stream through a log foot bridge and continue south along with the river bed to reach Garamchashma. From this point, one leaves the river bed and turn left. The path ascends very smoothly till one reaches a small pass. From this point, there are two options to reach Broghil. One can climb right to reach Chikar which is the base of Darkot glacier from where one can reach Showrsheer the other day bypassing Ishkarwaz. If one continues towards southeast, the valley opens up with vast stretches of different small but colorful flowers. The stage ends at Ishkarwaz.
A couple of hours walk away from Ishkarwaz is Garhil. Inhabited by a few households, Garhil is one of the most beautiful spots of the whole area in terms of landscape. After crossing Garhil, one walks beneath the Darwaza pass and reaches Lashkargaz. Darwaza pass is another way to enter into Agfhanistan’s wakhan corridor. Before Lashkargaz, the main attraction of this day is a series of small but beautiful lakes with changing colors. In total, these are five different lakes just adjacent to each other. Every few kilometers on this path, one comes across a new pasture which is used as the grazing land for yaks. Lashkargaz is the place where traditional polo festival is held each year where wakhi people from the whole region participate.
It is a very gentle walk up to Karomber that climbs very smoothly. One passes through small settlements on Rabat and Lale Rabat before reaching the Karomber pass at 4200 meters. Karomber lake is further half an hour away from the pass at 4160 meters. There are some camping sites maintained along the lake. Porters normally stay in open sky small huts built above the lake. They must be provided a water proof sheet as a protection against snow and rain.
This is the easiest day of the whole trek with a very gentle walk of few hours. One enters into the Karomber valley after crossing Karomber lake which does not enjoy the greenery and beautiful landscape of that of Broghil valley. Swinj is inhabited by Gujjar people. They come from Imit during summer months with their livestock. They are not as friendly as the wakhi people and must be treated with caution.
This is one of the longest day of the trek included with it is the crossing of Chittiboi glacier. Glacier crossing takes around 2 – 2.5 hours. The crossing itself is not very technical however donkeys with load struggle on it. At sokhtarabad campsite is maintained along with the police post which comes under the jurisdiction of Ishkoman police station.
Soon after leaving Sokhtarabad, one has to cross the Sokhtarabad glacier. Virgoth which is the destination of this day is undoubtedly the best camping site of the trek but it comes with a price which is “Shuttargurdan”. It is the name of the difficult mountain one has to cross with very narrow, steep and scary path. The original path used to go along with the river however in year 2007, glacier blocked the way of the river and there is no apparent way to cross it. One has to be very careful on this narrow path as any wrong step can take one down to thousands of feet down into the river.
Today we will start early in the morning to to reach Mitrandas. After leaving Vrgoth, we will cross the glacier that takes 30-40 minutes and ends at Yasin village which is another pictersuqe village and is very much similar to virgoth. An hour walk from Pekhin takes one to the river. One can cross the river on foot if water is not high or there is an alternate route available over the cliff on the left which is not very difficult however is narrow where donkeys with load struggle. From Mitrandas we will ride the jeeps for onward journey to the center Yasin for overnight stay.
Drive to Gilgit, en-route we will stop at Khalti Lake and some other places for photography and lunch, arrive in Gilgit and transfer to the hotel.
Drive back to Besham on Karakoram Highway, short stops en route for lunch and photography, arrive and check in to the hotel
Drive to Islamabad, en route we will visit Taxila museum and any of the heritage site, later we will continue our drive to Islamabad where we will visit Faisal Mosque and Pakistan monument, in the evening drive to the airport and fly to your destination.
This was a fantastic local experience mainly in the Hunza valley which included trekking for just two of us.
The scenery is both dramatic and beautiful demanding constant photography but this was exceeded by the warmth and kindness of the local people. Hunza Explorers gets you close to these people as a travel agency based in a local village. The organisation of the trip was impressive and exceeded expectations and our team of driver and guide were really good and great to spend time with. This part of Pakistan is not necessarily for the 5 star hotel brigade but provides a wonderfully fulfilling meeting with real life as yet unspoilt.