Lidderwat to Shekwas: Extraordinary journey in the Paradise | Tarsar Trek – Day 3

Day three of the Tarsar trek is a gradual climb from Lidderwat to Shekwas campsite. You gain about 1600 feet on this day, from 9100 feet at Lidderwat to 10700 feet at Shekwas. Following an hour of a steep climb, there is another hour of a flat walk. There is a place where you need to cross the stream, walk along the stream for a while, and then gradually climb till you reach a place full of boulders. Once you cross these huge boulders, you are at the Shekwas camp site.

Lidderwat to Shekwas - Tarsar Marsar trek

If you have not gone through my previous two days of the Tarsar trek, then check these out:

Tarsar Trek – Day 1 – Srinagar to Aru drive

Tarsar Trek – Day 2 – Aru to Lidderwat

Lidderwat, a lovely campsite

Lidderwat is a famous local place. Many visit this place as it is a one-day trek and is considered an ideal place for a nice weekend hike. There is enough space to camp here, and the water source is not a problem at Lidderwat campsite. There are PDA (Pahalgam District Authority) guesthouses where you can stay. You can even request and stay in local Gujjar huts, maybe for a small fee, but it is nice to stay in their hut to get that unique experience. This is a lovely campsite with stunning mountain peaks on all sides and streams on both sides. Sunrise and sunset at this place make it an ideal place for some time-lapse photography.

Exploring the wilderness on the way to Shekwas

Soon after having breakfast, we packed our bags and were ready to go. It starts with a zig-zag climb up the hill right behind the PDA guest house. As you climb up, don’t forget to turn around and see your campsite from above. The shadows on the nearby mountains fall on the mountain opposite that, and the sun’s rays, or godly rays of light, are truly magical. As you climb further, you enter the pine forest. Continue further until you see the stream far below.

Walk all the way down and continue right next to the stream for another kilometer or two. You get to see a few huts of local Bhakarwals, Gujjars, and shepherd’s houses. Right next to this is a place where you can cross the stream. It is ice cold, and you can get yourself refreshed and have your packed lunch as well. Continue further parallel to the stream, and the trail next is a gradual climb right next to the stream.

Crossing the slippery boulders and ice-cold water can be extremely challenging for these sheep. and a few even fell down while crossing. They just jumped, maybe because we were around and wanted to reach the other side of the river in no time. Luckily, the shepherds take care of each of them and make sure all of them cross. It took almost 15–20 minutes for a few hundred sheep to cross the river, and we had to wait for our turn. The local Gujjars and Bhakarwals come to this place during the summer so that these animals can graze on the Himalayan slopes, and during the winter they go to cities.

The view from Homwas – Kalahoi Peaks

This place is known by the name Homvas. As you continue further, turn around to see the beautiful mountain peaks and the glacier. The peak that you see in the above image is Kolahoi Peak, which is 17,799 feet high. Right next to or below is the Kolahoi glacier, which is the source of the Lidder River.

Kolahoi Peak is 17,799 feet high, and Kolahoi Glacier is the source of the Lidder River. View from Homvas near Tarsar, J&K, India

If you have a telephoto lens, then it’s a must to capture this peak. It’s far away, and the view that you get to see is visible only for 10 to 15 minutes during your trekking trail. Many are not even aware of this as it is too far away or always cloudy, and people also don’t turn around to see the beautiful landscape around them.

Enjoying the hike and the beautiful landscape

I’m not sure why people are in a hurry to reach the destination or the camp site. Instead, I would say to take your time, be with your group, and enjoy the beautiful nature and landscape around you. Photograph, if possible, so that you can always remember and see these places for the rest of your life.

Continue the trail, which is a gradual climb, till you reach a place full of boulders. To the right is the stream, and to the left are the Silver Birch or Bhoj trees. Here, you can either cross this river of boulders or take a different trail. These are huge boulders and can be difficult to cross. It takes longer to cross, and you have to be careful. You can avoid this crossing of boulders by climbing further. There is a Gujjar hut and a single lonely tree next to the hut. The view from this place is just awesome.

The final stretch before Shekwas

It’s all green meadows, multiple streams, valleys, and huge snow-covered mountain peaks. Spend some time enjoying the beautiful landscape next to the hut. Continue to walk down for a while until you reach Shekwas. The weather can be very cold at night, with a cold breeze. Ideal place to get some galaxy shots at night. The campsite is next to the stream again, but the stream is a few feet below your campsite, so do not venture out at night.