Friendship peak is a prominent feature located on the Pir Panjal ridgeline, visible from Manali. At an elevation of 5394 mts, Friendship peak holds repute in local mountaineering circles for being a challenging climb. It is located on the range which separates Manali from Lahaul. The view from the top, and during ascend is spectacular. It is a semi technical climb, as you require an Ice axe, crampons and Koflach shoes.
Day 1. Arrive in Manali (2050 mtrs)
Manali is 554 kms from Delhi, and 309 kms from Chandigarh. After hotel check in, one can just stroll around the town. A walk towards Hadimba mata temple is the best. In the evening one can visit the small mall road of Manali, which is also the local market. After a small briefing, all purchases which are required for the climb have to be done today.
Day 2. Manali to Solang and trek to Bakharthach (3500 mtrs)
In the morning after an early breakfast, proceed to Solang in vehicles. Solang is 14 kms from Manali. From Solang, it’s a 4 hrs trek to Bakharthach. Bakharthach is a green shepherd’s meadow on a small hillock and is an ideal camping location. There is awesome view of the snow clad mountains from Bakharthach. You can view the seven sister peaks from here, of which Priyadarshini being the highest, and the mighty Hanuman tibba can also be seen from here. Stay in camps tonight.
Day 3. This day is for acclimatization walks around Bakharthach
Day 4. Bakharthach to Beas kund (3690 mtrs)
Start the trek early morning. There is a gradual short climb, then a long walk on a flat land, at the end of which is the Beas kund. This is a small lake fed by the melting waters of the Snow Mountains above. The river Beas originates here. Overnight stay in a camp.
This day is for snow and ice training. Friendship requires some level of technical experience for climbing. If we have trained climbers, we can proceed to the next camp on this day.
Day 6. Beaskund to camp 1 (4200 mtrs)
The climb goes along a ridge, it is steep in places. Camp I of Friendship peak is on a small flat patch of land at an elevation of approx 14000 feet. Stay in tents for the night.
Day 7. Summit day (5394 mtrs)
Start the day early. After an early breakfast, and packed lunch, start ascend toward the summit. The climb depends on various factors, like the season, amount of snow fall, and amount of exposed ice. A fixed rope has to be anchored. If conditions are favourable, it’s a 5 to 6 hr climb to the top. Once on the top the view is enchanting. You can view a long ridgeline of snow clad peaks. After spending some time on the summit, return to camp 1 for the night.
Day 8. Trek back to Bakharthach from camp 1.
Day 9. Trek back from Bakharthach to Solang, and drive to Manali.