Goecha La trek: At the lap of the mighty Kanchenjunga (May 2021)
Yuksom, Sikkim, India
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At an elevation of 16,207 ft, Goecha La pass is a high-altitude mountain pass buried deep inside the Kanchenjunga National Park, offering spectacular views of Mt Kanchenjunga — world’s third highest mountain. Not only that, you can see 14 other summits during the Goecha La trek. The trek starts from Yuksom which is well known for its historical significance and highlights the culture and tradition of Sikkim. The trek takes you through Kanchenjunga National Park and wonderful campsites from where you can witness the endless beauty of nature including breathtaking green landscapes and meadows, dense rhododendron forests and mountain animals such as yak, mule etc .The rich flora and fauna that you see during the trek are unmatchable and the dramatic changes in the weather combined with quick altitude gain makes Goecha la a challenging trek, suitable for trekkers with moderate experience. This April, as the valley blooms with rhododendrons, join us as we trek through one of the most beautiful rainforest and witness spectacular views from both Dzongri top and View point 1. At The Great Escape, You don’t JUST trek, you experience - the culture, the history and learn from experiences of people who live there. In the end, you come as strangers but you leave as friends.
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The Goechala Trek starts from Yuksom, which was once the capital of Sikkim. Yuksom is 150 kms away from NJP and takes appx 6 - 8 hrs to reach. The team is picked up from the NJP station around 10 am in a private vehicle. Yuksom being a historical town provides a perfect glimpse of the rich heritage and religious traditions of the state. At Yuksom, accommodation will be provided at a guesthouse. The evening can be spent exploring the town and shopping any last minute items.
Sachen is appx 8 kms away from Yuksom and takes 6 hours to reach. As we leave the Yuksom village behind, the trail crosses vast landscapes leading to the valley of the serene river Rathong. Crossing the valley, the trail takes a sharp turn to forested lands of Oak, Fir, Bamboo and Pine tree with each step becoming denser with thick growth of trees. Trekking through the forest for around 30 minutes, we reach the first iron bridge. As we continue on this trail we are greeted by the spectacular beauty of the Tshushay Khola waterfalls which flows to meet the Perk river. We cross another iron bridge and a gradual ascent leads us to the third iron bridge over Mentogang Khola river. From here it’s another 20 minutes of trek to the Sachen campsite.
It is a distance of 5 km from Sachen to Tshokha. Initially a pleasant walk, the trail becomes steep before Bhakim (8600 ft). From Bhakim, Tshokha is only 2 kms away with the trail lined up with rhododendrons and alpine berries. We can find the presence of beautiful Magnolias and Rhododendrons here. We come across an iron bridge over the river Perk a km from Sachen. From here we can see the waving prayer flags which mark the beginning of the Goechala trail. It is a steep ascent till Bhakim. Try to spot Mt. Pandim and Mt. Tenzinkhay en route. Tshokha is another 2 km from Bhakim. There are trekkers hut in this region which can accommodate around 20 trekkers. The Tshokha campsite is a wonderful location with fascinating views of the snow clad Himalayan peaks especially Kanchenjunga and Pandin.
Dzongri is 9 km away from Tshokha and takes appx 8 hours to reach. The route to Dzongri goes via Phedang (1-500ft) which is located midway. It is a steep ascent all the way to Dzongri through trails covered with Rhododendrons.
Dzongri top is an hours hike from Dzongri. The pictorial view from Dzongri top is quiet mesmerizing. The top is marked by the prayer flags. Enjoy the view of peaks such as Kanchenjunga (8534 m), Kabru (7353 m), Padim (6691 m), Koktang (6147 m) and Narsing (5825 m). After sometime on the top, we continue on the trail to Lamuney via Kokcharang (12000 ft) and Thansing (12900 ft). It is and 8 km trek from Dzongri to Thansing and takes appx 5 hours. The initial trail is amont lush green meadows and dense rhododendron plantations followed by deep forested areas. The trail descends before Kokcharang. From here it is a straight walk down towards the bridge of Prekchu river. From here Thansing is another 2 kms away on a gradual ascending trail. From Thansing Lamuney is another 2 hours away. The trail to Lamuney passes through meadows with over stretched pastures on both sides. Today was a tough day. Spend the evening relaxing at the campsite.
Today is a relaxed day. We trek 2 hours to Lamuney through meadows with over stretched pastures on both side. Spend the day exploring Lamuney and beyond. Sleep early tonight as we need to start early to Goechla the next day
It is the D day. Today is the longest day of our trek and the most awaited day as well. The good news is all we need to carry today is a day pack. Expect an early morning wake up call. We start the first leg of our hike, towards Samiti lake which takes appx an hour to reach. From here is a steep ascent of 2 kms to viewpoint 1. From here the route descent to the km long Zemathan pass. Another 2 kms from here takes us to viewpoint 2. From here Goechala is another 2 kms away. Witness the mighty Kanchenjunga from here, a view that takes one's breath away. We trace our route back all the way to Thansing where we camp for the night.
We retrace our route from Thansing and cover a distance of 16 kms to Tshokha. From Thansing, Phedang takes 5 hours to reach and another 2 - 3 hours to Tshokha.
We retrace our route from Tshokha to Yuksom. It is a distance of 15 kms and takes appx 7 hours to reach.
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After breakfast we board our private vehicle to NJP. Overnight trail to Kolkata.
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𝐓𝐇𝐄 𝐉𝐎𝐘 𝐎𝐅 𝐓𝐑𝐀𝐕𝐄𝐋𝐈𝐍𝐆 𝘋𝘪𝘥 𝘺𝘰𝘶 𝘬𝘯𝘰𝘸 𝘵𝘩𝘢𝘵 𝘵𝘩𝘦𝘳𝘦 𝘪𝘴 𝘢 𝘷𝘪𝘭𝘭𝘢𝘨𝘦 𝘪𝘯 𝘔𝘦𝘨𝘩𝘢𝘭𝘢𝘺𝘢 𝘸𝘩𝘦𝘳𝘦 𝘵𝘩𝘦𝘪𝘳 𝘪𝘯𝘩𝘢𝘣𝘪𝘵𝘢𝘯𝘵𝘴 𝘢𝘳𝘦 𝘤𝘢𝘭𝘭𝘦𝘥 𝘣𝘺 𝘵𝘶𝘯𝘦𝘴, 𝘯𝘰𝘵 𝘯𝘢𝘮𝘦𝘴? 𝘖𝘳 𝘸𝘦𝘳𝘦 𝘺𝘰𝘶 𝘢𝘸𝘢𝘳𝘦 𝘰𝘧 𝘢 𝘶𝘯𝘪𝘲𝘶𝘦 𝘢𝘳𝘵 𝘧𝘰𝘳𝘮 𝘱𝘳𝘢𝘤𝘵𝘪𝘤𝘦𝘥 𝘪𝘯 𝘒𝘶𝘵𝘤𝘩, 𝘎𝘶𝘫𝘢𝘳𝘢𝘵, 𝘵𝘩𝘢𝘵 𝘪𝘴𝘯’𝘵 𝘱𝘳𝘢𝘤𝘵𝘪𝘤𝘦𝘥 𝘢𝘯𝘺𝘸𝘩𝘦𝘳𝘦 𝘦𝘭𝘴𝘦 𝘰𝘯 𝘌𝘢𝘳𝘵𝘩? 𝘖𝘳 𝘥𝘪𝘥 𝘺𝘰𝘶 𝘬𝘯𝘰𝘸 𝘵𝘩𝘢𝘵 𝘉𝘩𝘶𝘵𝘢𝘯’𝘴 𝘎𝘋𝘗 𝘪𝘴 𝘥𝘦𝘵𝘦𝘳𝘮𝘪𝘯𝘦𝘥 𝘣𝘺 𝘪𝘵𝘴 𝘱𝘦𝘰𝘱𝘭𝘦’𝘴 𝘏𝘢𝘱𝘱𝘪𝘯𝘦𝘴𝘴? The joy of traveling is to wholly immerse yourself into the story of the place that you travel to and we at TGE Travels bring nothing less than that on the table. Our well thought out itineraries give a deeper insight into the culture and history of a place by getting our travelers closer to the local communities, their customs, cuisines and lifestyle. And it goes without saying that we are the queens of finding offbeat locations, stays and activities which we bring out in all our itineraries. TGE stands for The Great Escape and a trip with us is like pressing the “Escape” key from the mundane routine to an exciting and cherishable travel experience 𝐖𝐇𝐎 𝐀𝐑𝐄 𝐖𝐄? Established in the year 2016, TGE travels was founded by Reetu Yadav and Jamila Kapasi, two expert mountaineers who had more than 6+ years of experience in mountaineering and the outdoors. TGE Travels is infact one of the rare travel and outdoor companies wholly owned by women with a vision of adding more women leaders in the unconventional outdoor leadership roles. What started as just a trekking company, TGE Travels has evolved into a more wholesome style of traveling by adding experiential traveling as one of its primary services. Our team at TGE Travels are a bunch of travel experts who want to add a meaning to your excursions. We are a strong unit of on ground team leads, backend supports and partner vendors who work cohesively to make your trip smooth and memorable. 𝐖𝐇𝐘 𝐓𝐆𝐄 𝐓𝐑𝐀𝐕𝐄𝐋𝐒? 𝑺𝒎𝒂𝒍𝒍 𝑮𝒓𝒐𝒖𝒑𝒔 Even before Corona, we have firmly believed that traveling in small groups is the best way to form connections and gain experiences. Now more than ever, we are committed to limiting the group size. Our travelers might meet as strangers but we ensure that they leave as friends. 𝑨𝒎𝒂𝒛𝒊𝒏𝒈 𝑻𝒆𝒂𝒎 𝑳𝒆𝒂𝒅𝒔 What makes TGE Travels awesome are our team leads. They are the reason why our travelers choose to travel with us again and again. Full of energy and enthusiasm, our team leads are the ones who bring the whole group together. Their energy bounces off our travelers and within no time, the entire group forgets that they were just strangers just sometime ago. But of course, our team leads are also very skilled in handling any situation and ensuring the trip goes as smoothly as possible. 𝑾𝒆𝒍𝒍 𝑻𝒉𝒐𝒖𝒈𝒉𝒕 𝑶𝒖𝒕 𝑰𝒕𝒊𝒏𝒆𝒓𝒂𝒓𝒊𝒆𝒔 We have spent endless hours brainstorming on itineraries to bring out the unique stories of the place that we travel to. Not only that, while designing any itinerary our team personally travels to the location to identify experiences and off beat locations. We try to provide the best experience within the timeframe and budget and that has made us popular as one of the more thought driven travel itinerary planners. 𝑪𝒉𝒐𝒐𝒔𝒊𝒏𝒈 𝑻𝒉𝒆 𝑹𝒊𝒈𝒉𝒕 𝑺𝒕𝒂𝒚𝒔 We select our accommodation partners meaningfully. Our stays should have a story to tell. This encourages us in going beyond the standard hotels and instead delving into a wide range of accommodation options where we can choose from authentic homestays, which to us is one of the best ways to learn about the culture of a place, to beautiful resorts that are situated at the perfect picturesque locations to boutique hotels that are elegant and charming. 𝑺𝒂𝒇𝒆 𝑴𝒐𝒅𝒆 𝒐𝒇 𝑻𝒓𝒂𝒏𝒔𝒑𝒐𝒓𝒕 Just like our accommodation partners, we give a lot of importance in choosing the right transport partners. Most of our journey is on road and we ensure our travelers are comfortable in the vehicle. Our drivers become a part of the group and it's amazing to see how our travelers treat them as just one of their own. When it comes to bike trips or Scooty trips, we ensure the two wheelers are well serviced and maintained. Apart from that we always have a support vehicle with us throughout the journey 𝑫𝒆𝒍𝒊𝒄𝒊𝒐𝒖𝒔 𝑭𝒐𝒐𝒅 Food is an integral part of our itineraries. Hence all meals are planned in advance allowing our travelers to taste the unique cuisines of the regions that they travel to. We encourage our travelers in trying out local delicacies but never hesitate to deliver something comfortable immediately if the local food does not suit their palette. 𝑹𝒆𝒔𝒑𝒐𝒏𝒔𝒊𝒃𝒍𝒆 𝑻𝒓𝒂𝒗𝒆𝒍 We firmly believe in responsible tourism. Apart from the standard no littering policy, we encourage our travellers to be sensitive to the local communities.
It's always a pleasure travelling with TGE! The one thing I love most is their attention to detail, which ensures that your trip is a memorable one. Travelling with TGE is a wholesome experience, you see the larger more iconic places with no compromise on the little things. Travel with them if you want to interact with the people of the place, eat their food, in short experience their lives. These guys do a superb job of making everyone comfortable and everytime I travel with them I make beautiful bonds with all the other travellers. I would 100% recommend TGE to everyone who has the travel bug. It doesn't get better than this! ☺️❤️
I have known Reetu and Jamila for many years and have worked with them in the past. But this was the first time I decided to travel with them as a participant. When Reetu told me about exploring Spiti in winters I was completely on board. The itinerary sounded exciting and the pricing less. S my friend Manish and I immediately signed up for it. One of the best decisions I ever took. Spiti in winters in beautiful. The 7 days with the team was wonderful. We spent our days driving around the valley and our evenings dancing to pahadi songs. The planning was perfect with utmost care given in the choice of stay and comfort. Of course the highlight of the trip was spotting a snow leopard. Overall it was an amazing trip and I am looking forward to join many more with The Great Escape
Shravan Kumar Poshetty
Should I describe with “perfect planning” / “meticulous coordination”/ “cordial organiser”...might be with all of it.
Flawless execution is what makes them unique and organiser Reetu Yadav has let all of us experience it with her executional capabilities...
Clarity n flow of communication:-5/5
Comfort in Mode of Travel:-5/5
Action in Emergency:- very swift 5/5
Team has proved that its not all about the commercial trip but also the cause which is concealed in their carryings. What we pay at Flemingo Resort at Dholavira goes to educate and for taking care of more than 400 students and their boarding facilities as well.
Its not over yet, you will be pleased to meet the gifted souls from remote villages who are manifested in their respective disciplines like Rogan Art (Hon’le prime minister himself have gifted one to Barack Obama), Wood Art and Bell Art, Textile etc.
You will get to eat the delicious food made out of love from the local (A1 class food).
Off all, well planned itinerary and the execution is commendable. We RoK team who departed on 12th Dec’19 are truly happy with the onsite organiser Reetu Yadav and the offline backbone Jamila Kapasi who took good care of each of us at every stretch.
Their intact affirmative relation and proper delicacy in their execution makes then unique.
My best friend is much impressed with their proceedings and that makes me much happier than ever.
Last but not least, am fortunate to have rest 13 of the participants as part of my extended family. Again the credit goes to TGE.
Kudos to the team and i look for further association with “THE GREAT ESCAPE” ( you have already give our team a great escape from the routine.
Way to go TGE team!!!
Kumar Tarur Parameswaran
Such great detailed planning at micro level and being open and upfront about the tour details impressed me at the very start. They lived up to their promise in every which way.
TGE’s expression of their solidarity towards the cause of the villagers by getting travellers to interact with them in a lively way and help the villagers in their livelihood was one of the primary reasons I chose to travel with TGE.
TGE means immersive experiential travel and what you get in return and come away with are unforgettable lifetime memories.
Looking forward to many more tours with TGE. Reetu and Jamila pull your collars up. Way to go! You will go miles!
The great escape recently took care of my 10 days family trip to Bhutan. We were 9 of us, including 2 kids and 2 elderlies. Each detail of the trip was so beautifully planned and coordinated. Jamila was personally in touch with drivers, hotels and homestay owners to ensure we ar getting the best of experience. We never even had to look for directions, call hotel or tell driver about anything. Everything was already taken care of and we were just the guests in very true sense. Such a wonderful trip it was. Everything was so beautiful including all the places where we stayed.
Much thanks to Jamila and the great escape team to make it work like magic for us!
- Stay in guesthouses at Yuksom on Day 1 and Day 9 - All meals from Day 2 to Day 9 - Expert guide - Tents, sleeping bags and mats - Service of an experienced trek leader - Porters and mules for common items - All necessary permits
- All transportation charges till Yuksom. We can arrange a private pick and drop from NJP, the cost of which needs to be shared by all. - All meals in transit - Personal expenses and tips- Individual mule + Porter charges NOTE: All trekkers are required to carry their own backpack along with their personal belongings. Porter facility can be availed at an additional cost
Policy and Terms
20 days before the event start date: No Refund 20- 45 days before the event start date: 50% Refund Before 45 days of the event start date: 75% Refund Do go through our detailed T&C