The landscape that is found in Himachal Pradesh is attractive. There are mountains of high elevation throughout. We must cross these mountains to travel from one area to the next along the significant roads. When we cross the mountains, there is a small passageway in the mountains, which is known as a pass. There are numerous passes within Himachal Pradesh, and some have significant importance in trade and travel. Locally, these passes are known as “Jot” or “La” in the local language.
Himachal Pradesh is the perfect place for people who enjoy an adventure like Mountaineering, Trekking, Hang-Gliding, rock climbing, skiing, Hell-Skiing, River Rafting, Fishing, Hunting, Golfing and the Crossing high passes from one range to the next. There is a lot of potential for all these activities within the state. People love Crossing the passes all season to go on adventurous treks, and most prefer to do it in winter when passes get covered in massive snowfalls.
Only a few of the passes in Himachal Pradesh are for motor vehicle travel, and most of the Passes only be crossed on foot trekking.
Famous Passes in Himachal Pradesh
Rohtang pass is one of the most famous and valuable Passes in Himachal Pradesh. Rohtang pass is the main gateway to Lahaul Spiti from Kullu Valley. Rohtang pass is the second-highest road point globally, at 3980 meters from sea level. This pass is located in Pir-Panjaal Range of Himalaya on Leh – Manali Highway. Rohtang pass remains covered under snow for 4 to 6 months of the year, and then the Lahaul Spiti and Leh Valleys are cut off from the rest of the world for this period. Now Govt have created a tunnel named Atal Tunnel to bypass the Rohtang pass so that the Lahaul Spiti and Let will remain connected throughout the year.
Kunjum Pass connects the Lahaul Valley and Spiti Valley. At 4520 meters, it is situated 65 KM from Gramphoo towards Kaza on the Gramphoo – Kaza- Sumdo Road.
Hampta Jot Pass:
Hampta Jot Pass in Himachal Pradesh is a crossing trek between Kullu and Lahaul-Spiti. At an elevation of 4267 meters from sea level, Hampta Jot Pass is the most stunning and scenic pass in the Himachal Pradesh. This is because both sides of the pass are different to each other. One side of Kullu valley is lush green full of nature’s green beauty with forests, grasslands and flowers blooming. Another side is the almost arid, stark geography of Lahaul, with barren mountains and almost no greenery.
ShipKi La Pass:
Shipki La pass is the border post pass between India and China. It is located in the Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh and Nagari prefecture in Tibet, China, at 3930 meters. Currently, the road at the pass is used only for small-scale local trade across the border.  Like other border passes along the India-Tibet border, the border is no longer open for non-residents
Kugti Pass is located in Pir Panjaal Mountain range of central Himalaya at 5050 meters from sea level near remote village Kugti. Kugti pass is between Bharmour in the Chamba district and Lahaul Valley.
Saach Pass is in Chamba District of Himachal Pradesh, 127 KM from Distt headquarters. It connects the Chamba Valley with Paangi valley. Saach Pass is located in the Pir Panjaal range of the inner Himalayas at 4414 Meters from Sea level. Saach Pass is the shortest route to Killar.
Bara Lacha La Pass:
Bara Lacha La is a high mountain pass connecting Himachal Pradesh and Ladakh. Bara Lacha La is located in the Zanskar mountain range of the Himalayas at 4890 meters from sea level, and Bara Lacha La connects Lahaul Distt of Himachal Pradesh with Leh district of Ladakh.
Jalori Pass is situated at the height of 3134 meters in Distt Kullu of Himachal Pradesh. It is the only gateway from inner Seraj to outer Seraj, and it falls on the Kullu Rampur Road. Attractive views from the top, an isolated road full of adventure and a beautiful lake (Siyolsar Lake near Jalori Pass) near Jalori Pass are the main attractions of this pass.
Inderhaar Pass is located in the Dhauladhar range of the Himalayas at the height of 4342 meters from sea level, and this is a border pass between Kangra and Chamba districts. The trekking trail to Indrahar pass starts from Galu Devi temple above Dharamkot village near Dharamsala and passes through the camping ground of Triund, Ilaqua/Laka Got, and Lahesh Caves. On the other side of the pass, the camping sites include Chhata caves at 3242 meters and Kuarsi village in Chamba at 2,260 meters.
Telang pass is named on the name of the local God Telong. It is located at the height of 4640 meters from sea level in the Dhauladhar range of the Himalayas in the Kangra district of Himachal Pradesh. Talang Pass is one of the highest and most difficult passes of the Dhauladhar mountain range and is seldom used by shepherds and trekkers due to its complex nature.
Other Passes in Himachal Pradesh
|S.No.||Name of Pass||Height (In Mtrs)||Short Description|
|1.||Laluni Jot||5440 m||This is trekking gateway between Lahaul Valley and Spiti Valley.|
|2.||Pir Parvati||5319 m||Between Kullu valley and Spiti valley|
|3.||Duggi Jot||5060 m||Bharmaur (Chamba) — Lahaul|
|4.||Tentu Ki Jot||5000 m||Between Kullu — Spiti|
|5.||Gulari||4960 m||In Lahaul Distt|
|6.||Chhabiya||4934 m||Between Paangidhar – Lahail — Bharmour|
|7.||Manali Pass||4880 m||Between Manali — Kangra|
|8.||Animal Pass||4880 m||Between Kangra — Bharmour|
|9.||Kundi Kukari||4540 m||Between Kullu — Kangra|
|10.||She Jot||4530 m||In Distt Kullu|
|11.||Tempo La||4890 m||Between Lahaul and Spiti|
|12.||Darati Pass||4720 m||Between Chamba and Paangi|
|13.||Tamshaar Pass||4572 m||In Dhauladhar mountain Range Between Kangra — Bara Bhangaal|
|14.||Shingur Pass||4310 m||Between Kangra and Bharmour|
|15.||Bheriyang pass||4140 m||Between Kullu and Kangra|
|16.||Vaar Jot||3870 m||Between Kangra and Chamba|
|17.||Garu jot||3730 m||In Kullu|
|18.||Baaleni Jot||3730 m||Between Kangra — Chamba|
|19.||Jaalsu ki Jot||3450 m||Between Kangra and Chamba|
|20.||Khaili Galu||3440 m||In Kullu Distt|
|21.||Rasoul Jot||3230 m||In Kullu Distt|
|22.||Jalori Jot Pass||3135 m||In Distt Kullu between inner Seraj and outer Seraj|
|23.||Bhubu Pass||2895 m||Between Joginder Nagar (Mandi) and Kullu|
|24.||Dulchi Pass||2788 m||Between Mandi and Kullu|
|25.||Sodan Paas||2400 m||Between Chamba and Bhatiyaat|
|26.||Bhim Ghasutri||Between Bharmaour and Lahaul Spiti|
|27.||Chhobu Pass||Between Kangra and Chamba|
|28.||Borsa Pass||Between Kinnaur and Gharwaal Uttrakhand|
|30.||Rangcha Galu Pass|
There are many more passes in Himachal Pradesh, and some of them are yet not officially acknowledged. But visitors and travellers know them very well to cross over for adventures or other purposes.