Uttarakhand, formerly known as Uttaranchal, is a hill state of northern India. Uttarakhand, nestled in Himalayas, has a topography that offers wide range of landforms from hills and peaks to cliffs and ridges. The topography of this beautiful hill state boasts of rich forests, rivers, mountain peaks and glaciers.
One of the most important features of Uttarakhand's topography is its glaciers. A glacier is a large and slow moving mass of ice. It is formed due compacting of layers of snow. The glacial movement is directed by gravity and high pressure. It is noteworthy that the glacial ice is the largest source of fresh water on Earth.
The glaciers of Uttarakhand source some of the most important river systems of India. While the river Ganga has its origin in the melt waters of Gangotri glacier, the melt waters of Yamunotri glacier feed the headstream of river Yamuna.
Feeding the perennial rivers of Himalayas, the glaciers of Uttarakhand have a live and beauty of their own. Glaciers here are very popular with tourist, trekkers in particular. Some of these mighty glaciers are considered holy while some are visited just because of there sheer magnificence.
Some of the most popular glaciers of Uttarakhand state are Bunder Puunch, Pindari, Milam and Gangotri. However, other glaciers like Ralam, Sunderdhunga, Doonagiri, Dokhriani, Khatling, Kaphini etc. are also fast becoming popular amongst trekkers.
Bunder Punch at an elevation of over 6, 000 meters above the sea level, is an important glacier of Yamuna basin. It lies in the district of Uttarkashi within the hill state of Uttarakhand.
Dokriani glacier is also called Dokhriani Bamak. Locally, Bamak means glacier. This medium sized glacier is located in the district of Uttarkashi within the hill state of Uttarakhand in India.
Doonagiri glacier is located in the district of Almora within the hill state of Uttarakhand in India. Doonagiri is an important glacier of the Dhauli Ganga system of glaciers.
Gangotri glacier is located in the district of Uttarkashi in the hill state of Uttarakhand. It is one of the most important glaciers in Garhwal region as it is responsible for feeding the head stream of the holy river Ganga.
Kafni glacier which combines scenic beauty with tranquility is located in the district of Bageshwar within Kumaon region of Uttarakhand state. Kafni is situated left of Pindar Valley, below the famous peak of Nandkot and to the southeast of Nanda Devi peak.
Khatling glacier is located in the district of Tehri in the hill state of Uttarakhand. Khatling is an important glacier of Garhwal Himalayas which is the source of river Bhilangna.
Milam is a major Himalayan glacier situated in Munsiyari tehsil of Pithoragarh district within the hill state of Uttarakhand in India. Milam with an elevation ranging from 5, 500 - 3, 870 meters above the sea level, is located about 15 Km northeast of Nanda Devi.
The word 'Namik' means a place where saline water springs are present. Namik is a fascinating glacier cradled in the pristine environs of Kumaon Himalayas, within the district of Pithoragarh in the hill state of Uttarakhand in India.
Pindari is a major Kumaon Himalayan glacier located in Bageshwar district within the hill state of Uttarakhand in India. Lying between the famous peaks of Nanda Devi and Nandakot, the glacier terminates at an altitude of 3627 meters above the sea level.
Ralam is a beautiful glacier located in Munsiyari tehsil of Pithoragarh district within Kumaon region of the hill state of Uttarakhand in India. This magnificent glacier is situated at an elevation of 2, 290 meters above the sea level near Ralam Dhura at Ralam Khal.
Sunderdhunga literally means valley of beautiful stones. Sunderdhunga glacier is situated in the district of Bageshwar within the hill state of Uttarakhand in India. Other famous glaciers of Sunderdhunga valley are Maiktoli Glacier (6, 804 M) and Sukhram glacier