A small group of 148 pilgrims on Sunday left Jammu for the Amarnath cave in Kashmir, officials said.
The pilgrims, including 49 women, boarded eight vehicles and left the Bhagwati Nagar base camp in the wee hours under tight security, they said.
The officials said the group is heading for the Baltal base camp to undertake the yatra from the shorter 12-km route in Ganderbal district, while none of the pilgrims opted for the traditional 36-km Pahalgam route in Islamabad district.
The number of pilgrims has been decreasing with each passing day because all those who officially registered themselves for the 2018 Yatra have already performed the pilgrimage.
The 60-day long annual Amarnath Yatra which started on June 28 has been going on smoothly. Till date, over 2,81,574 pilgrims have paid their obeisance at Amarnath cave.
More pilgrims have visited the cave shrine so far in 2018, than in each of the last three years.
The 60-day Amarnath Yatra will end on August 26, coinciding with the Shravan Purnima festival.