A team of seven members (American and Canadian) led by Casey Henley reached the top of Stok Kangri (6153 Meters) the highest peak in the Ladakh area of Jammu and Kashmir on 8 June 2019. It was the first successful ascent of 2019; two different teams France and India attempted the peak, but did not succeed. Expedition leader Mr. Casey said it has been a very snowy winter here in the Stok Valley and it was in full alpine conditions. "Generally, July to September are the safest and best times to climb this mountain," said Casey. "But we choose to go earlier, which means we encountered more challenges while climbing. Fortunately, we were ready for that and we are really very happy that we made it." This was Casey's first time climbing a peak in the Indian Himalaya, however, he had lead many mountain trips/climbs in Nepal, Tibet, China & Pakistan. "It was a great experience for me and my students here in India. We were planning to come to Stok since 2017 and finally, we did it this year."
Significantly Casey was leading a group of six students of PLATTSBURGH State University of New York in this expedition. This expedition was organized by one of the renowned adventure companies of India Shikhar Travels.
Casey said lots of credit goes to Shikhar travels, tour escort Pankaj Chandel and a local guide from Leh. "They were very professional and amazing, which made this expedition a memorable experience for us. We enjoyed the hospitality in India. People are really nice here and there are so many beautiful places to explore. We will come back again."