Rivers and Lakes – Kinnaur , Himachal Pradesh , India

Rivers and Lakes – Kinnaur , Himachal pradesh , India



The Satluj-This is the principal river of Kinnaur almost dividing the district into two parts. It runs within the Himalayan mountains for about 450 kilometers and the first part of its course is west-north-west. When it enters Kinnaur, it generally takes south-westerly direction. Within the District the length is about 130 km. Its source is supposed to be at a great elevation on the southern face of the Kailash range whence it flows into the sacred lake Rawan Hard. As far as the village of Khab it is almost a razing torrent. At Khab it receives the Spiti river where the bed of stream is still above 2,589 m high from the mean sea level. The Satluj descends from about 3,050 m (the point of its entrance in the district), to 1,220 m at Chaura flowing almost the whole way between narrow cliffs and therefore, there is no open ground worth describing all along its bank.The water of the river is more or less discoloured.Cultivated fields in terraces are generally at considerable height from its banks and thus immune from the turbidity of water which largest in June, July and August. The average discharge is about 2,000 cusecs during the winter and 100,000 cusec during June-July. The tributaries of the Satluj in this district are the Spiti, the Ropa, the Taiti, the Kashang, the Mulgoon, the Yula, the Wanger, the Shorang and the Rupi on the right bank and the Tirung, the Gyanthing, the Baspa, the Duling and the Solding running on the left bank.


It is the second major river of the district which has its source far north on the eastern slopes of the mountain ranges which run between Lahul and Spiti. The river is formed at the base of the Kunzum Range by the confluence of Kunzum La Togpo and the streams Kabzima and Pinglung. It flows eastwards till Kaurik and then turns southwards to join the Satluj river at Khab at an altitude of 2589 meters. Spiti is joined by several feeders which meet the river both at right and left banks. Chaladogpo, the Yulang, the Lipak and the Tirasang are its main tributaries. The only mentionable tributary on the left bank is Chaladogpo existing between Chango and Changriang, whereas on the right side are the yulang, the Lipak and the Tirasang.



The Baspa river, the another feeder of the Satluj, rises on the north eastern declivity of the outer Dhauladhar of the Himalaya. It is a big and valuable stream, running smoothly down a famous valley. It is bounded on the south-west by the Dhaola Dhar and on the north-east by the huge Raldang peak of the Great Himalaya. The channel of the river is wide. At Chhitkul its width is roughly twenty meters, lower down, the width is from twenty-three to twenty-five meters. After coursing in a north westerly direction it falls into the Satluj at Karchham.The Baspa is next to Spiti in size and is about seventy-two km in length. Its entire course lies within the district. As compared to other rivers the Baspa is fairly turbulent and frequently changes its course thereby doing extensive damage to the cultivated fields on its bank.It receives the various streams and streamlets on both of its banks. On the left side mentionable tributaries are Zupkia, Thatang, Bering and Rukti and on the right Suthi. This is the most inhabited valley and there are now permanent bridges at many places. An outlandship fish species known as brown trout (salmo fario) is found in this river.

Nako Lake

This beautiful lake is high altitude lake located in the Pooh sub-division of district Kinnaur. The lake is surrounded by willow and polar trees. There is a small village on the bank of this lake – and the village seems to be half buried by the lake’s borders. On the water’s northern side, are four Buddhist temples with stucco images and murals. Near Nako is a footprint-like impression ascribed to the saint Padmasambhava. It freezes in winter and people enjoy skating on this lake.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *