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This spring a unique splitboard and ski expedition will take place in the Indian Himalaya.   Himalaya Alpine Guides owner Luke Smithwick will be joined by Tahoe based splitboard guide Jules Hanna and ski mountaineer Brennan lagasse (State of the Backcountry) to make turns in this remote part of the world.

Starting in Ladakh India, the expedition will be exploring a quiet portion of the Indian Himalaya focusing on the opportunity to ride up to three 6000 meter peaks from a well equipped horse supported base camp.

“If you’ve ever dreamed of making turns in the Himalaya and are looking for an exploratory ski adventure that’s as culturally vibrant as it is affordable, consider joining us this May into June. ” – Brennan Lagasse

Trip cost: $2280

Dates: May 28th- June 11th.

We will be camping on dry land, and eating_relaxing in tents like this during our trip.


Here is what Luke has to say about a day in the life of expedition travel and acclimatization:

“A day with Himalaya Alpine Guides starts around 7:30  with espresso coffee and chai tea. We have eggs to order, fresh fruit, porridge and muesli for breakfast. We usually get on the trail by 9 am on our acclimation hikes, stopping for a picnic lunch around mid day. Acclimation days are usually done by mid afternoon, and guests rest by the creek and read a book, wash up with a hot bucket of water, or go for a hike up a side canyon.  Dinner always starts with soup, followed by three to four dishes for dinner.  Favorites are pizza, lasagna, and Tibetan food. It’s hard to stay awake past 8 in the high mountains, and you normally sleep 10 to 11 hours. Your body needs it after trekking and skiing at altitude.

Horses carry all of your equipment and skis/snowboard, and you only walk with a light pack with water, a rain jacket, sunscreen, and a camera.  Once we reach base camp, we’ll be at the base of a glacier with multiple 6000 meter ski objectives, and the whole place to ourselves for first descents. Join us. We can cater to all dietary needs and ski and snowboard abilities, from seasoned veterans to intermediate backcountry skiers and snowboarders.”

local horses transport gear as the expedition members hike up river and acclimate before climbing and skiingHimalaya Alpine Guides offers cost effective and full service trips.  Each member will have their own roomy 2 person Mountain Hardwear tent (4 person tent for couples). The dining tent is set up with each member having their own camp chair, books pertinent to the trek/climb, maps, solar charging for electronics, and snacks as you would like them when we arrive to camps.

The following photos will give you a taste of this exploratory trip that will be on any splitboarders hit list who has a desire to travel through the high mountains of the world and experience the people and cultures embedded in them.


Outline Itinerary

*This itinerary is a basic framework. If more time is required for acclimatization on approach, we will do so.  Acclimatization of each participant will be monitored and plans will be made around the healthy and safety of the expedition team members.

1 – arrive Leh – 3500m 28 May 2017

2 – drive Chiling, trek Chumik 3500m

3 – trek Hangkar 4000m

4 – trek Kang Yatze base camp 4900m

5 – acclimatize Kang Yatze base camp 4900m

6 – ski objective 1 – 6000m

7 – shift camp

8 – rest

9 – ski objective 2 – 6000m

10 – shift camp

11 – rest

12 – ski objective 3 – 6000m

13 – trek Chogdo

14 – trek Shang Sumdo, drive Leh

15 – depart Leh – 11 June 2017


Our service includes

2 nights hotel in Leh (single supplement)

All other accommodation while present on scheduled trip itinerary

Ground transportation by private vehicle

‘Himalaya Alpine’ Expedition style peak scrambling trip: Delicious meals, french press coffee and herbal teas, all horse porterage on approach/retreat, local guides and staff, Mountain Hardwear expedition tents, equipped dining tent, experienced western guides (Luke Smithwick,  Jules Hanna, Brennan Lagasse).

Solar charging for electronics

Himalaya Alpine Guides duffel bag


Our service excludes

Trip/medical/rescue insurance

International flights

India Visa

Meals while not on trek (Leh)

Personal climbing equipment

Puja cost (allow US$15)

Items of a personal nature (laundry, bar bills, gratuities, etc.)


Please contact Luke at Himalaya Alpine Guides, Brennan or Jules.



Colin Balke is a content editor for who lives in Northern California. When not plucking away on a keyboard, he can be found splitboarding, camping, backpacking, or hanging out with family and friends.