Perched on hill top at an altitude of 3790m (12,430ft), Rani Sui lake (or Saurkundi Lake) is above Manali town. It can be called a flower valley as vast pastures around the lake remain covered with varieties of flowers between May and September. The area remains snowbound for seven months, while shady mountain faces hide snow for 8-9 months a year. The lake freezes completely in December and person can walk on it as thick ice is unbreakable. Rani Sui lake is south west of Manali with aerial distance not more than 7km. Close to Rani Sui lake is an amazing stone formation, similar to a base of a bridge, which is believed to have built by Pandavas during Mahabharata yuga. It is also a midway halt for shepherds enroute Kangra valley.
Rani Sui lake is reachable by nearly a half dozen routes. Depending upon route you choose, this is a 3 to 7 days trek from Manali. Rani Sui is one of the few high altitude lakes in Kullu valley. Beyond the lake is Khanpari Tibba and Blue Eye Lakes (neeli eye lake). The region offers mesmerising view of Manalsu glacier, Hanuman Tibba, Deo Tibba, Indrasan, Jagatsukh Peak, Inder Kila, Rohtang pass, Manali town, Dhauladhar and Pir Panjal ranges.
Day 1: Manali To Lama Dugh (3065m), 4-5 Hours
We start the trek from Dhungri, about 1.5kms from Manali. Today’s trek comprises of walking through thick Deodar forests. It is mostly an uphill climb. We’ll stop for lunch on a lovely rocky ledge providing a beautiful view of Manali town and its surrounding peaks. Lama Dugh is a lovely meadow ringed by Maple, Spruce and Oak while stands of Silver Birch are further up in the Hill-side. Lush green Lama dugh is a meadow surrounded by thick forest. The meadow has a small cottage built by forest department to house the forest guard who occasionally visits the area. Overnight in camps.
Day 2: Lama Dugh To Khanpri Ruar (3658m), 3- 4 Hours
Now the trail ascends steeply through woodland and meadows with wild alpine flowers strewn all around. On the way brilliant shrubs of rhododendron and birch pave the way to the ridge after which you get to the camp site. Be noticed that this is the habitat of Himalayan bear. Have your lunch and go to explore the surroundings.
From this point one can have a magnificent glimpse of Manali, situated on the left bank of River Beas and of the whole upper Kullu valley, which appears swathed in the different colours of the season. Overnight in camp.
Day 3: Khanpri Ruar To Rani Sui (3800m), 4- 5 Hours
This day start early in the morning after breakfast , summit Khanpri tibba (4022m) and then go further to visit the sacred Lake of Hindus Rani sui. The lake at Rani Sui is a small mountain tarn with a 360 degree view of the Pir Panjal and Dhauladhar Ranges. The lake is also known as Saurkundi Lake. The small lake is rain and snow-fed with no outlet. Lake gets completely frozen in winters. It is surrounded by vast meadows with now tree cover. The region is popular for Himalayan herbs. A many shepherds camp in the region during summer months. Overnight in camp.
Day 4: Rani Sui To Manali (2050m), 5 – 6 Hours
Wake up to a beautiful morning and enjoy the sunrise. Post breakfast, continue all the way downhill till the Shangchar Village, south of the lake, from where the jeep will pick us up and take us to Manali.