What does grading (Easy, Moderate, Difficult, Strenuous) means?
Trekking routes are graded based on the difficulty and have been divided into 4 types Easy, Moderate, Difficult and Strenuous- the challenge in terms of both technicality and geography increases as we move higher in that order. So easy will be suitable for all while Strenuous and difficult Treks are meant only for those who have certain experience and capability. This can help you choose any activities in Himalayan Region that best suits your fitness level and experience but remember this is a general guide only. A variety of factors, including weather, may add to the challenge.
No previous trekking experience is needed or any physical preparation required doing this trek. All you will need is an interest in walking as the treks will usually range from 2 days hike to 5 days trekking and can reach up to an altitude of 3000 m. Treks usually on well-maintained paths and passes through ridges and involve walking up to 5 hours a day.
Moderate Treks will require at least 6-7 hours of walking every day and will reach altitudes above 4000 m as you cross high altitude passes. Some of the day’s treks will be long and exhausting walks through often rough trails, rocks and boulders. Therefore, you will require physical and mental fitness, positive attitude and interests and previous hiking or camping experience is preferred and prepared to face high altitude.
Previous trekking experience and technical knowledge is essential in adventure trekking or difficult treks. Besides walking through rough trails for 6-7 hours and crossing high passes as high as 5000 m, you will also be glacier crossings on snow/ice. You will be facing high altitude air with low level of oxygen and continuous walking over huge stretch of Himalayan valleys. Positive attitude and perseverance is required.
Strenuous treks involve long days, long hours of challenging walks, high altitude passes above 5000 m, difficult terrains and glacier and snow walking. No doubt you need to be mentally and physically fit and in excellent health condition. As part of technical requirements, you will required to have rock and ice climbing experience with the knowledge of use of ice axe and crampons. You should consider joining one of the rock climbing and glacier walking classes prior to heading for Trek.