Har Ki Doon
Har Ki Doon!! I was bitten by the travel bug in the early years of my life and now I look back and take pride in the successful trekking expeditions I have covered over the years. India is home to a rich culture and heritage and it is also home to the Himalayas. Among the top ten tallest peaks of the world, Himalaya hosts nine of them with great pride and if you have not yet started exploring this asset of the country, boy you are lagging behind.
Each and every trail in the Himalayas is crafted with beauty and magnificence and among the abundance of trails, the Har Ki Doon Trekking trail is one of the very finest. It is a moderate difficulty trekking route stretching over a distance of 48 km in 5 days. While I was exploring the Garhwal Himalayas, each and every minute has rewarded me with amazement and joy.
If you plan to take on this incredible trekking route, follow the path that I have traversed and you can be sure of no boredom ever. As I started my journey I was filled with a childlike happiness and the excitement grew and grew with each hour. Sankri was my first destination from Dehradoon. I remember how the road started to climb the mountains almost immediately and the 10 hours long ride was filled with incredible views of the surroundings. The drop in temperature was a blessing and the beautiful location of the small town in Govind Pashu National Park looked admirable.
The following day is when I began with my walking and the destination was Puaani Garaat. A boost of energy got me up and running for the trek ahead. The walk began with a decent and I was actually savouring the sight of the Supin River with the looming mountains in the backdrop. I had to cross the river before the ascent started. It was tiring but I pushed myself further till I reached the 12th km mark at Puaani Garaat. I could not help but retire to the camp in an instant.
Mornings in the mountains are really beautiful and as I woke up, the slight drizzle piercing through the clouds made the ambience of the area extremely intimidating. Kalakatiyadhaar was my stop today and dared myself to start the walk under the drizzling sky. A level trail followed along the beautiful Supin River and a small bridge came which I needed to cross before attempting the ascending trail ahead. It was quite slippery from the rain but I was enjoying the sight. Finally, the snow-covered campsite was in front of my eyes and it looked extremely mesmerizing. I was gauging at the beauty of the surrounding snow-clad peaks and the fresh water stream revitalized me from within.
The day was here and I woke up at the earliest to attempt the most daring part of the journey. It was a walk till Har Ki Doon and back to Kalakatiyadhaar. A refreshing surrounding was enough to charge me up and take on the challenging trail comprising only of ups and downs all along. At first, it was a narrow trail with loads and loads of snow and I as I was approaching the valley, the trail started to widen up. The snow did more trouble than favour as the glaring sun was reflecting extremely brightly on the snow fatiguing my eyes. It was quite hot and I had to catch a breath every now and then.
The scarcity of water supply was killing me from inside and as I approached the last steep climb I was completely drenched out. Thankfully I got some water from another fellow trekker and I finally fought my way through the last ascend. The astonishing Har Ki Doon valley unfolded before me. It was a bewildering sight, the valley looked gorgeous with the Har Ki Doon Peak standing bright on one side and complimented with the Swarga Rohini Group of Peaks on the other. The snow-covered peaks and the valley was a delight of a sight and I was extremely happy about completing this incredible journey.
I spent some time there witnessing the grandeur and raw brilliance of the peaks and the valley. It broke my heart to remember that I will have to start descending down to Kalakatiyadhaar. While walking down I kept on thinking about the enchanting view I have just encountered. The whole walk back was completed along the same trail with night stops at Kalakatiyadhaar, Puaani Garaat, and Sankri. I long to attempt this route yet again as this experience was unmatched and the next journey can be even better.