Hiking Trails – Mount Kailash Parikrama

The mountains are calling and I must go ~~ John Muir

South Face of Mount Kailash


The bus picked us up from our stay in

We went to Yam Dwar and people went around the temple three times. It is like getting the permission of Yama, the God of Death. The starting point of the parikrama is the Yama Dwar or the Gates of the Lord of Death at Tarboche. The significance of doing the three rounds around Yam Dwar is Yama guides the mortal souls to their heavenly abode. Symbolically, at Kailash you abandon your mortal self and your soul enters the heavenly abode of Lord Shiva.

The walk was simply great. The surroundings were amazing. You were walking in the valley surrounded by tall rock mountains to your right and left. At Yam Dwar, we get to have the darshan of south face of Mount Kailash walking towards Mount Kailash keeping the mountain in full view was just indescribable. It was a long day of walking but every moment was incredible. No words to describe our walk on the earth to the abode of Lord Shiva. The gentle wind sometimes hard and cold, the gentle flow water from the glacier going downhill, and the rough patch of terrain, and occasional four and two wheeled vehicles passing us were the only companions for our long walk. You may see the Yaks carrying people’s loads on their back and Yetis grazing the dry patches of grass in the distance and occasional birds and  a few of the burrowing animals. 

West Face of Mount Kailash

The west face of Mount Kailash could be seen but not as open like the south and the north face. There was a wall of other smaller mountains that blocked the west view. It was almost 9 pm when we reached Dirapuk. Our night stay was at the feet of North face of Mount Kailash. Because of the location of Tibet Plateau at the highest altitude the daylight was there until very late in the evening. Though the sky was clear, it was cold and windy so you had to keep the jackets and mufflers on. We reached Dirapuk around 9 pm and had to call it a day. But the Sherpas were very persistent and they brought hot soup and dinner to our beds. We were also informed because of the heavy snowfall on the east of Mount Kailash, our permission was revoked by Tibetan administration and we had to go back to Darchen. It was very disappointing to many of us. Though we tried to convince the Sherpas, we were prepared for the snow hike, we were not allowed since ours was a group permission.

Day 10:

The next day we woke up to have warm tea and the Sherpas were making arrangements to send us back to Darchen. Some requested ambulance ride (jeep ride) back and we preferred walking back. We stepped out to have our darshan of Mount Kailash. It was a cold but beautiful morning. The porter told us to go to the closer point before we leave from there.

So we decided to go up further from where we all stayed and had a very peaceful prayer time with Lord Shiva. The moment was very blissful. We started our walk back to Darchen. When we were walking back we had hail storming our way for a few minutes. But thankfully, it stopped and we had a smooth walk back

North face of Mount Kailash
South face
West Face of Mount Kailash