Rakaposhi is a famous mountain in Pakistan. Located in Nagar, Gilgit-Baltistan, the name of the mountain means ‘snow-covered’ and it is popular due to its exceptional rise over the terrain and its majestic mountain-face which remains covered with snow throughout the year. At an elevation of 7788 meters (25,551 feet), Rakaposhi is the 27th highest mountain in the world and the 12th highest in Pakistan. Though, the height of Rakaposhi is modest compared to its taller neighbours in the same region such as K2 and Nanga Parbat, its solemn beauty grants it a status of its own along with its exceptional prominence over the KKH seeing how it draws the eye toward itself from so many surrounding areas including the valleys of Hunza, Nagar and even Bagrote. Rakaposhi’s exceptional rise over the terrain gives the aforementioned valleys their aesthetic and characteristic beauty.
The Rakaposhi Base Camp lies at an elevation of 3500 meters and the best time to trek to the base camp is from May to mid-October.
To get to the Rakaposhi base camp, our starting point from the capital city of Pakistan, Islamabad. From here, one has to drive over 8th wonder of the world, the Karakoram Highway to Chilas and then onwards to Gilgit city.
To get from Gilgit to Rakaposhi, one has go to Minapin in Nagar which takes around an hour and a half. It is situated 80 km from Gilgit. On the way, one also crosses the ‘Rakaposhi View Point’, also known as the Zero Point of Rakaposhi which is located in Ghulmet, Nagar and is the closest view point of the mountain with a lovely glacial stream falling down the mountain and a small roadside restaurant famous for its tasty local dish Chap Shoro.
Moving forward, Minapin is a serene and beautiful village which has good facilities and hotels for tourists such as Diran Guest House and Hotel Osho Thang. Minapin is the gateway to the beautiful Rakaposhi and Diran peaks.
A 3-4 hour trek from Minapin takes you to the Hakapun campsite on the way where one can refill water from the clean glacial water stream. Diran glacier is also visible from the Hakapun campsite and is a wonderful sight to behold.
Another 2-3 hour trek can take you to the Rakaposhi Base Camp - Tagha Phari, lying in the shadow of the mountain.
The good thing about a trek to towards Rakaposhi base camp is that a side trail can also take you to the equally beautiful Diran Base camp which is worth a visit. As such, an ideal trek can last around 2-3 days to enjoy all the views and follow the Minapin glacier trek as well. After this trek, we go back to Minapin and go across the bridge over Hunza River to the Valley that lies just opposite to Nagar, Hunza.
Hunza offers a great many attractions including the 800 year old Baltit Fort and the 1100 year old Altit Fort(the oldest monument in Gilgit-Baltistan) both of which have been restored by the Aga Khan Trust For Culture. These were the royal residences of the Kings of Hunza (The Kingdom of Kanjut) who ruled over a vast territory including Hunza, Nagar and even parts of present-day China and Afghanistan for over a thousand years. The royal gardens adjacent to Altit Fort (Kha Basi) are another lovely sight to behold. Walking uphill across Karimabad with its lively cafes, and shops selling exotic local handicrafts and precious jewels from the mountains in the lovely atmosphere is a wonderful sight and going further north to sights like Attabad Lake, Borith Lake, Hussaini Suspension Bridge and Khunjerab Pass (the highest paved international border crossing) with the stunning mountains of the Karakoram Range all around is a travel experience which cannot be found anywhere else in the world as the grandeur of the mountains in this area (and their abundance) is unparalleled.
As such, this trek and the subsequent places of interest make for a wonderful travel experience. Book this to the top of your summer bucket-list and you can thank us afterwards!