Although the trek is possible throughout the winter, the best time for the Gangtey Trek is between March-May and September-November. It is a short and relatively easy trek with several beautiful villages and monasteries en route.
The trail winds through forests of juniper, bamboo, magnolia and rhododendrons and over small streams of cold, clear mountain water. This trek is an excellent choice for those visitors not accustomed to trekking in the mountains as it offers beautiful views of the country with mostly gentle, forested slopes. The best time for this trek is between September-May.
Day 1: Phobjikha – Zasa
Distance 15 km, 6-7 hours, 610 m ascent, 410 m descent, camp altitude 3,130 m.
The Trek starts near the village of Tabiting. The trail winds through meadows and fields and the climb takes you through a mixed forest of juniper, bamboo, magnolia and rhododendron to Tsele La (3430m). From here you descend into the Juge Kangkha Chhu valley. Further on, the path leads to Gogona, well known for its “Gogona Cheese” production. The campsite is a bit further on besides a small stream in a yak pasture called Zasa.
Day 2: Zasa – Chorten Karpo
Distance 16 km, 5-7 hours, 450 m ascent, 860 m descent, camp altitude 3,330 m.
A gentle climb leads to Shobe La pass (3,480m). The descent from the pass leads to a wide valley, surrounded by beautiful mountain ranges. Below the route one can see Khothokha, a village with about 60 houses. You finally reach the campsite by climbing gently up till you see four chortens in a forest of blue pine.
Day 3: Chorten Karpo – Tikke Zampa
Distance 12km, four to five hours, 120m ascent, 1,340m descent.
From the camp you climb till you reach a forest road. From here it’s an easy walk up to a little ridge at 2,800m. The walk down back into the valley leads you through Bhutan’s best bird watching areas. The trek finishes at Tikke Zampa.