HikePK

Chitta Katha Lake

located in Shounter valley, Neelum District, Azad Kashmir.

Chitta Katha Lake

Chitta Katha Lake is a deep bowl shaped lake located in Shounter valley, Neelum District, Azad Kashmir Pakistan.

The lake is mostly snowbound during the year and only accessible in June, July and August.

Chitta means White and Katha means Stream, So Chitta Katha is a stream with milky white water.

Chitta Katha is a local name of the stream coming down from the Hari Parbat, originating from the lake called Chitta Katha lake of the Mount Hari parbat.

Chitta Katha Lake is a lake located in Shounter valley, Neelum district, Azad Kashmir, Pakistan at the altitude of 4,100m.

Chitta Katha Lake Shounter Valley

Chitta Katha Lake Shounter Valley

Turquoise colored water and snow covered mountains in the background makes this lake extremely fascinating.

Accessibility

  • Lake is located in Shounter valley of the Tehsil sharda of Neelum district of Pakistan administered Kashmir.

  • The lake is mostly snowbound during the year and only accessible in June, July and August.

  • Chita katha can be approached from kel Village, 155 kilometers from Muzaffarabad. Buses run daily between Muzaffarabad and Kel in good weather.

  • There is a bank, college, hospital and a bazaar in Kel, also Private hotels and a rest house of AJK Tourism and Archeology Department located in Kel for tourists stay.

  • The trek for this lake starts from Upper Domail village, which can be reached through 2 hours (20 km) jeep ride from Kel through Shounter Valley Road.

  • Upper Domel is a diminutive remote village in Shounter valley and accessible through a 2-3 hours peregrinating on a jumpy jeep road from Kel.

  • From Upper Domail, the gentle walk up to the Chitta Katha village takes around 30 minutes.

  • From Chitta Katha village, there are two options to reach lake. One goes along the Chitta Katha Nallah and is pretty steep as well as narrow at certain points and could be difficult for inexperienced trekkers. Journey takes 4 to 5 hours for experienced trekkers, whereas it could be more than that for the new ones.

  • The other one takes a bit longer round and is used by the Gujjars when their livestock has to be moved with them. To use this trek, cross the footbridge on shountar Nallah and follow the trail ascending up at the right side of the rocky face of mountain.

  • So, Kel is the base camp to this lake, Takes about 6 to 8 hours to reach the lake from kel, 20km through jeeps (2 hours) and then 10km (4 to 6 hours) trekking.

  • To stay in Upper Domel requires consummate camping arrangements as no other options are available.

Travel Tips

  • It can be an incredible journey, as long as you take the necessary precautions and heed weather warnings.

  • Always, check the forecasts, since the conditions can change very quickly.

  • Warm clothes and Raincoat are must, as the weather can change at any time.

  • Make sure you have your NIC, Passport, etc.

  • Much of the road trip is driven through remote lands, so be sure that your vehicle has passed all of its inspections and is well-equipped. Bring spare tires, extra gasoline, and a radio for additional safety.

  • Driving this route in daylight, especially for your first time, is highly recommended.

  • Some areas are prone to floods and landslides, so do not attempt this road with a car that does not perform well in the elements.

  • Due to strong ultra violet rays, it is recommended to wear a hat and sunglasses, also carry sun block creams.

  • Due to uphill trekking, a Trekking pole and a good pair of climbing shoes or joggers are recommended.

  • To avoid de-hydration while trekking, mineral water is highly recommended.

  • Due to the long trek, proper food intake is important. Also carry sweets, toffees, chocolates, dry fruits etc.

  • Please keep the environment clean at all times, on the route and around the Lake.

Tourist Attractions

Popular tourist attractions include: