It is a large sized bird nearly seventy centimeters in length. The adult males possess a long crest which is metallic green in colour and have multicoloured feathers over their body. The females like other pheasants are dull in colour with the upper parts covered with dark brownish- black feathers. The striking feature in males is the back and the neck, which is reddish brown in colour and the back, which is white. The tail feathers of the males are rufous which is darker towards the tip. The lower tails of the females are white, barred with black and rufous. The females have a striking white patch in the fore neck and a white strip on the tail.
The Himalayan Monal is seen in pairs during the breeding season and they assemble and involve in communal roosting during the winter.