Asia > South Asia > Bhutan > Central Bhutan > Jigme Singye Wangchuck National Park
Jigme Singye Wangchuk National Park is in Central Bhutan. JSWNP represents the best example of the mid-Himalayan ecosystems of the Eastern Himalaya that contain several ecological biomes ranging from sub-tropical forests at lower altitudes to alpine meadows at its highest altitudes.
This 1,730-km² park is home to virgin forests and an array of wild animals, including leopards, red pandas, Himalayan black bears and many species of bird.
It occupies most of the Trongsa district, and parts of Sarpang, Tsirang, Wangdue Phodrang and Zhemgang districts.
The high mountains in the central regions of the national park are an important watershed for the streams and rivers that become the headwaters and tributaries of the Mangde Chhu River to the west. Nika Cchu joins Mangde Chhu from the north. It is also connected via biological corridors to other national parks in Bhutan.
The park was established in 1995 as the Black Mountains National Park.
It covers a wide range of habitat types from the permanent ice on top of Durshingla (in the Black Mountains), alpine lakes and pastures, through coniferous and deciduous forests to temper subtropical forests and forests. The park protects the largest and most biodiverse temperate forest area in the entire Himalayas.
The habitats of the Eastern Himalayan deciduous forest ecoregion are protected within the park.
The park's north-central region has an especially rugged topography, with peaks rising to almost 5,000 metres (16,000 ft) in elevation, while the southern areas are relatively less steep and rugged.
Flora and fauna
This park is home to virgin forests and a host of wildlife including leopards, red pandas, Himalayan black bears and many bird species and represents the best example of the Mid-Himalayan ecosystems of the eastern Himalayas which contain several ecological biomes ranging from from subtropical forests at its lowest altitudes to alpine meadows at its highest altitudes. It is the only park that contains an old Himalayan pine forest. The park is also vital for various migratory fauna species, particularly migratory birds due to its wide range of altitude and vegetation, and central location in the country.
The wide range of altitudes and mountainous terrain create complex climatic conditions, from humid subtropics in the south to cold temperate in high-altitude areas in the north. The southwest monsoon from June to September contributes most of the annual rainfall. The rain shadows imposed by the high mountain ranges result in localized precipitation gradients during this period.
Along the border of the park, from north to south-east, run the main highways of Bhutan.
Fees and permits
The Nabji-Korphu Trail is a low-altitude winter trek open from mid-October to end of March. Nabji-Korphu Community Based Nature Tourism runs a guided trek through six villages. It is a 6-day/5-night low-altitude winter trek with elevation ranging from 1000-1700 masl.