Real travellers are always in search of real life experiences. While in Ladakh, enjoying a safari on a yak brings you closer to local culture and lifestyle that locals lead in Ladakh. Yak, or dong as Ladakhis call it, happens to be the largest animal in the cold deserts of trans-Himalayan Ladakh. First described only a century ago by the famous Russian naturalist-cum-explorer, N. M. Przewalski, the wild yak is definitely more impressive in appearance than its domestic counterpart.
Immensely shaggy and weighing about a ton it has curved horns whose tips can be as wide apart as 90 cm. and measure 76 cm. over the curves. It can easily be distinguished by its long black hair, which is tinged with gray at the muzzle. Spending its summers at a height above 6,000 meters, in winter it moves in herds to the lakes, marshes and lower valleys. It is this highly insulated shaggy coat which helps Yak to survive in such extreme cold.
Yak Safari in Ladakh is a safari with a difference. It is an experience unique to Ladakh. Exploring lakes, glacial valleys, gurgling streams, cascades, chiselled snow peaks, meadows, forests on a yak can be a lifetime experience. It offers breathtaking views of high peaks of this rugged land. A Yak Safari is organised on prior booking. All those who wish to experience Yak Safari in Ladakh should respect the humble attitude of this majestic animal. Travellers are also requested not to take the extreme hospitality of the yak for his weakness or laziness.
Around 6 feet in height and 1000 kg in weight, the yak has a coat of thick black hair which prevents him against the extremities of the Himalayan climate. A yak is capable of surviving a temperature of – 40 degrees centigrade. They have also adapted themselves quite well to snowstorms and blizzards. During winters, they live on moss and dried grass. Yaks are generally found at an altitude of around 3,200 m. They are also good climbers as well.
The International Union for the Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources, Morges, Switzerland declares the wild yak species as vulnerable. Currently, the wild yak can be found in China and India. The main reason behind the decline in the population of wild yaks is uncontrolled hunting by natives and military personnel. Habitat disturbance, hybridization and disease transmitted by domestic yaks are the other reasons.
Experience the yak safari as the locals do. Get in touch with our travel experts for more information about and options of yak safari in Ladakh.