Biafo Glacier
بیافو گلیشیر‎
TypeMountain glacier
LocationKarakoram, Hispar Valley, Pakistan
Length67 kilometres (41.631869879901 mi)

The Biafo Glacier (Urdu: بیافو گلیشیر‎) is a 67 km (42 mi)-long glacier situated in the Karakoram mountain range in Shigar district, Gilgit−Baltistan, Pakistan, which meets the 49 km (30 mi)-long Hispar Glacier at an altitude of 5,128 m (16,824 ft) at Hispar La to create the world's longest glacial system outside of the polar regions.[1] This highway of ice connects two ancient mountain kingdoms, Nagar, in the west with District Shigar Baltistan in the east. This Glacier is about 20 km (12 mi) away from Askoli Village Braldo of Shigar District. The traverse uses 51 of the Biafo Glacier's 67 km (42 mi) and all of the Hispar Glacier to form a 100 km (62 mi) glacial route.

The Biafo Glacier presents a trekker[2] with several days of strenuous boulder hopping, with views throughout and Snow Lake near the high point. Snow Lake, consisting of parts of the upper Biafo Glacier and its tributary glacier Sim Gang, is one of the world's largest basins of snow or ice in the world outside the polar regions, up to 1,600 m (0.99 mi) in depth.

Biafo Glacier Hispar
Biafo Glacier Hispar
Snow Lake Hispar, Pakistan
Snow Lake Hispar, Pakistan

The Biafo Glacier is the world's third longest glacier outside the polar regions, second only to the 70 km (43 mi) Siachen Glacier, India and Tajikistan's 77 km (48 mi) long Fedchenko Glacier.

Campsites along the Biafo are located off the glacier, adjacent to the lateral moraines and steep mountainsides. The first three (heading up from the last village before the glacier, the thousand-year-old Askole village) are beautiful sites with flowing water nearby. Mango and Namla, the first two campsites, are often covered in flowers and Namla has an amazing waterfall very near the camping area. Baintha, the third campsite, is often used as a rest day. A large green meadow, it has a few running streams near the camp and many places to spend the day rock climbing or rappelling.

Evidence of wildlife can be seen on the trek, including Ibex and the Markhor mountain goat. The area is also known for Himalayan brown bears and snow leopards, although sightings are rare.

See also


  1. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-02-22. Retrieved 2014-02-16.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  2. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2006-03-16. Retrieved 2006-04-21.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)

Coordinates: 35°41′N 75°55′E / 35.683°N 75.917°E / 35.683; 75.917