‘Kinnaur & Spiti Valley’- The Journey to the Middle Land

Julley!

Mountains, there is something about them which can be felt, consumed, absorbed, gathered, appreciated. Once you like them, you can’t stop feeling them. In reality too, they look like dreams, a dream to be attained and creating further aspirations, always motivating. They keep healing you all the time. Each moment spent in hills, is a moment to treasure and admire for the future time.

Kinnaur and Spiti are those special regions in India, which are beyond any beauty in the country. They are actually not regions, they are experiences which can be explained in words and pictures only to some extent, it is only the experience that one gets by living the life in a unique manner in that far away barren, beautiful and outstanding land of the world which makes one realize the beauty of this world and importance of self existence.

About Kinnaur & Spiti Valley-

About-Kinnaur & Lahual Spiti

Exploring Spiti Valley was on my mind since the time I came back from fantastic trip to Ladakh in June 2016.  I kept reading about Kinnaur Spiti region, watched various videos and looked at available limited pictures. There were limited pictures, limited videos, limited blogs and limited tour operators. Though the content available online was limited yet surprisingly it was enough to attract to think of and plan this adventurous travel to this region.

Talking to local people, with whom I got in touch through a friend (whose friend belongs to Spiti), I got to understand that there is more to pictures that I could see on internet –  the place is tougher, extremely barren, less inhabitant, vulnerable, with momentary change behavioral weather and roads are really tough and so after lot of discussions and thoughts, I concluded that the trip should be done with any of the local tour operators – someone who knows the area well and is responsible enough. The search of this tour operator was made by my friend, who accompanied me to Ladakh. Unfortunately she couldn’t accompany to Spiti due to medical conditions. I missed her company, for it would have been great to have her. At the same time I made 16 new friends from different parts of the India and Srilanka.

As the date to start the journey was coming closer, there were goose bumps and butterflies in the stomach. The mind didn’t have much food for thought. The mind was getting excited to see the unknown and a journey was about to start where every moment there, was to come with a new destination. So a journey with innumerable destinations started on 23rd June 2017.

For some of us the journey started from Delhi and some started from Mumbai, Surat and Columbo.

A standard route for the journey was such  –

# Route Overnight Departure Time Travel Time
Day 1 Chandigarh – Shimla Shimla Hotel 2:00 pm 4 – 5 Hours
Day 2 Shimla – Sangla Sangla Hotel 6:00 am 6 – 7 Hours
Day 3 Sangla – Chitkul – Kalpa Kalpa Hotel 8:00 am 4 – 5 Hours
Day 4 Kalpa – Nako – Tabo Tabo Hotel 7:00 am 7 – 8 Hours
Day 5 Tabo – Dhankar – Dhankar Lake Trek – Lhalung Lhalung Homestay 9:00 am 2 – 3 Hours
Day 6 Lhalung – Pin Valley – Kungri – Mudh – Kaza Kaza Hotel 9:00 am 3 – 4 Hours
Day 7 Kaza – Langza – Hikkim – Komik – Ki Monastery – Kibber – Gette – Kaza Kaza Hotel 9:00 am 5 – 6 Hours
Day 8 Kaza – Losar – Chandratal Lake Chandratal Lake Camps 8:00 am 6 – 7 Hours
Day 9 Chandratal Lake – Manali Manali Hotel 8:00 am 7 – 8 Hours
Day 10 Depart from Manali (Check Out at 12 noon)

DAY 1- DELHI- CHANDIGARH- SHIMLA

The morning Shatabdi express took us to Chandigarh from Delhi in 3 hours and on Chandigarh platform Ram, our driver/ pilot for the next 10 days met us, greeted warmly and made us comfortable in Innova Car.

We drove towards the Airport to pick our fellow travelers coming from Mumbai. The wait was interesting. For me, this journey in Shatabdi started with my Brother. At the airport we were about to meet 4 unknown people. They’re who, male/ female, young/old…. We had no idea and so our eyes were looking for the first unknown destination. For the people you travel with matter more than the place (a friend says so and I believe in this), coming across the very first destination – 4 energy filled, vibrant, charismatic and enthusiastic ladies from Mumbai..we met at the Chandigarh Airport. Vibes matter..and this time with those strangers the vibes matched positively in minutes. In another few minutes we knew each other’s name, place we are coming from and also the last place we travelled to. Another hour made us exchange the reason for why have we chosen to travel to Kinnaur Spiti this year.

We had our own reasons, but we were moving through one way reaching one common destination at a time. Then, we were a team of 6 in one car – with hopes, energy, and vigor for our dream journey to Spiti Valley.

From the airport we were to go to Shimla via kufri and have a night stay. On the way we visited Pinjore Garden, a Mughal Garden, which is at the outskirt of Chandigarh in Pinjore City. It’s a place famous for family outing, where evenings bring beautiful lighting shows and day brings view of colorful decorative flowers. There were options of camel ride within the garden and toy train for kids, an ultimate family destination.

We took about 4 hours to reach Shimla and the very first Sunset in the hills of this trip was waiting for us and treat us on the very first day of the trip. We saw the hills and city of Shimla melting in orange colour and it was quite heavenly.

We saw slow moving, red and yellow colored toy train for the first time.  And we became kids for sometime who were waving hello/goodbye to the train and watching its movement while it entered in the tunnel. Small joys of living.

I have always been lucky to have a room with a view and such was the evening view from the hotel room –

We walked around the hotel area and while we stepped up after dinner to the hall area, we got to see this lightened view of the city.

In the month of June, it was chilling in Shimla. And we were loving it, after the hot days of Delhi and humid days of Mumbai.

We stayed over that night at Shimla.

DAY 2- SHIMLA- SANGLA (8900 Feet)

Early morning at 5 am, my phone rang. I had put my phone on full volume and the sleep in the hills was so deep that the sudden ring woke me up in surprise. The voice said “Good morning, this is Sandhya it’s time to wake up and get set to start the journey to Kinnaur”. For some time I thought I am in my dreams but no, it was real. Our tour operator actually made us get up at 5 am. In an hour we were all set to reach Narkanda and feed our stomach.

Here we met another 6 travelers (boys), a part of our group from Mumbai and Surat this morning.

About Narkanda – Breakfast and Lunch  Experience
http://mainedekhahai.com/breakfast-at-narkanda-lunch-at-juri/

Narkanda

It was India- Tibet National highway we were moving on and the road cut which we had only seen in pictures was right there in front of us. It looked for a moment as if there was no further way and the beautifully crafted mountain to create a way for us was majestic to take a pause and have a look on the beauty that man created himself.

NH- Indo-Tibet Highway

This way was a proof to be in Kinnaur, the flowing river Sutlej along us was another.
Further was a temple named “Taranga Maa Temple”. Ram bhaiya told that it everyone who passes through this route visits the temple and that the temple and deity is of lot of importance, the savior.

We crossed through dams and Baspa river power plants projects.

Then came this view point where we saw 5 moutains together forming one and the road cut as slit as possible. Standing there and admiring the beauty of nature was the least we could do.

We reached Sangla by afternoon.
These two beautiful ladies were right there (by chance), to welcome us at Sangla.

Hotel stay at Sangla

While we spoke to local people working at the hotel we stayed, about the places we can explore nearby, we got to know about two of them, which were not there in our itinerary. Those are – Sangla Monastery and Kamru Fort.
Though we were on a drive in the hills since morning, we were not tired to explore more. The Hotel check in was done and we started exploring Sangla and around.
This is the welcome gate to start the trek to Village Kamru –
About Kamru Fort
http://mainedekhahai.com/kamru-village-and-kamru-fort/

While we walked back to the hotel, we saw the golden shining clouds at the peaks. This 2 km uphill walk was worth every effort. We walked to the monastery, which was closed since it was already 6 pm and the sun set had started. Yet at the monastery we could see the holy lit up diyas and the view, as always was peace giving.

We reached our hotel with hungry stomachs and that chilling night had one of the best sleeps in the hills.

The morning was cloudy and waking up to this was so beautiful.

Day 3- SANGLA-CHITKUL-KALPA (12000 Feet)

We started from Sangla to Chitkul after breakfast. Distance from Sangla to Chitkul is 28 km. The way to Chitkul had huge rocks on the side.

We stopped at flowing fresh water. We drank water, posed with it, played with it. The gushing water was sweet in taste and soft in nature.

The rocky way

traffic of mules 😉

sweet flowing water

playful us 🙂

The Baspa river clear view assured us about reaching Chitkul. Here the birds flew high and sky was so damn clear, as if the childhood painting has come live where only the sky and the birds, flying birds are the theme.

And there we were, in the last village of India – Chitkul.

About Chitkul and experience of the place-
http://mainedekhahai.com/chitkul-last-village-of-india/

From Chitkul we moved to Kalpa via Sangla and Reckong Peo.

The drive from Chitkul shows the beautiful Baspa Valley. It was green and fresh and attractive. The trees were loaded with leaves and then there were trees without leaves, each holding the beauty. The dramatic cuts in the mountain to create roads are truly appreciable and wondrous. We kept clicking pictures since each time we found post card look of the nature.

Watch the pictures of the way from Chitkul to Reckong Peo through this link-

View from Chitkul to Reckong Peo

Our drivers told us to start early from Chitkul since we were suppose to cross a area where pebbles and stones fall from mountains very often post 11 am and what we saw was so true. It was not the most dangerous road in the world,that one was yet to come. This one had to be crossed on time, so we acted as we were told. The river flowing through this way was muddy and the air, one could taste the dirt. Crossing through that hard rock way was adventurous in itself.

We stopped at Reckong Peo to have lunch. The place was small and simple. In the main market area we could see only 2-3 restaurants and we rushed in one. 18 of us attacked on food.

Reckong Peo


Post lunch we moved to a Monastery nearby. It was technically the first visit to a Monastery on this trip. The 5 minute walks lead to the place where I found these happy and hard working souls; so contended and smiling.

The monastery was under repair work. We spoke to the Monk in the monastery. We walked up to the tall idol of Lord Buddha and rejuvenated ourselves for that evening.

We were now moving to Kalpa, The heart of Kinnaur.

Kalpa – Kalpa is a small town in the Sutlej river valley, above Recong Peo in the Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh, Northern India, in the Indian Himalaya. It is inhabited by Kinnauris and famous for its apple orchards.

The Majestic Kalpa experience –
http://mainedekhahai.com/majestic-kalpa-the-heart-of-kinnaur/

Day 4 – KALPA-NAKO-TABO (12000 Feet)

Today we were to hit the region of Spiti and had to reach Tabo via Nako.

On the way we came across this bridge. You might wonder what’s so special about this bridge. It’s not only this bridge; all the bridges in this region are light. Hence at a time only one vehicle can cross. This has to be strictly followed and the drivers in this region are totally aware about it.

Like each thing, the bridge was also decorated with colorful flag, the wind spreading positivity around.

Another bridge in making for heavy vehicles –

And that day was the day to travel on and experience the most treacherous road in the world.

Why treacherous- (I tried to research this on internet, but I couldn’t find it!)

Its treacherous to my understanding because of the following reasons-

-The soil of the land is loose – Condition of the road deteriorates quickly on entering Lahaul. Soil is loose and keeps shifting, ensuring that freshly laid tarmac doesn’t even last for a year.
-Stones and rocks keep falling from the top of the mountain
-It can’t be maintained  (Though BRO has tried their level best and have broaden it)

About the Roads of Spiti Valley – click on the link to read –http://mainedekhahai.com/roads-of-spiti-valley/

Every time we use to cross a bridge, we use to have a unique kind of joy and anxiety and this time crossing the bridge was going to give an amazing view of the cuts of the mountains and some local people offering expressions and sign language talks. All we understood is that they wanted lift and we had no space to offer them any space. Yet they were happy to engage and get pictures clicked. These ladies from Spiti –

The view of the road-

This was also a point where river Baspa and Spiti meet –

And 11 of us gathered for the first group picture, that time it was an initial step to bond and now its nostalgic to see these moments.

A simple hair pin road – 🙂

There were a lot of times when the car use to get puncture, which was one major reason that all three cars use to move together, so as to help each other. The puncture use to happen due to pointed stones on the road and air pressure. This was very normal for our drivers and they were all prepared for it. That’s what is getting repaired..men at work 😉

After this, we reached Nako for Lunch and witnessed the small little village of Nako and its lake.

Another unique element about each village in Spiti is this that there is a helipad in each village. And this was the first one we witnessed. At the right to the helipad was the dhaba where we had the best noodles of the trip. Nako is at the height of 12014 above sea level.

About Nako Village and Nako Lake- Click on the Link to read the details –
http://mainedekhahai.com/wp-admin/post.php?post=1372&action=edit

Finally on day 4 we were to enter the region of Spiti valley and the first stay was at Tabo.

The sunset at Tabo; a typical childhood painting came live in front of eyes.

We reached Tabo when the sun was at its peak and everything around was shining, as if Spiti was welcoming us with its arms wide open. Each day in this travel brought a unique sunset view and this was magnificent.

We had a first view of buildings and Ram bhaiya told us that that’s Government Senior Secondary school. Kids from various villages of Spiti come over to study in this boarding school. Such was a grand view for entering in the region of the world famous Tabo.

We never had imagined that #Tabo, a place of UNESCO world Heritage  would bring grandest welcome was to arrive and the moment our cars stopped, a tiny little cute baby nicely hung on her father’s back was right there with her twinkling eyes and shining aura. Very carefully and beautifully he had carried her folded in a shawl- the ends of which were in his hands only. While one hand of hers was free as you can see in the pic. The other end held his father’s hand. She must be few months and spoke nill in words to us but she had a charm which attracted most of us in the group to come near to her. If nothing else click them. And this man only knew Spiti language. He spoke to us through smiles and laughter. He’s a dude of his kind…humble…satisfied. He spent some 15 minutes with us and went on walking up the hill to reach his stay. This was the best welcome of ours in Spiti… A grand welcome. 🙂

About Tabo, a place of UNESCO world heritage, click on the link to read more-

Tabo, a UNESCO World heritage site

Day 5- TABO- DHANKAR-DHANKAR LAKE TREK- (12774 Feet) –

That day we were to go to Dhankar Village and had to spend night at Lahlung Village. Before we moved there, Tabo monastery had to be seen by us in detail.

One of the best mornings and one of the best days we had in Spiti was in Tabo.

Early morning we made a point to reach the Tabo monastery.
Details about Tabo Monastery – click on the link –http://mainedekhahai.com/tabo-monastery/

Post breakfast we drove to Dhankar Village.
Height – 12774 ft. above sea level.

Above the village sits the local monastery – the Dhankar Gompa. Total number of houses are 68.

Dhankar Village situated at an elevation of 3,894 meters (12,774 feet) is at the perfect setting for any monument in this world. The monastery complex is built on a high spur overlooking the confluence of the Spiti and Pin Rivers – one of the world’s most spectacular settings for a gompa. The monastery was built approximately one thousand years ago and now belongs to the Gelugspa.

In recent years, due to the deterioration of the building, some sections of the gompa have been abandoned and a new gompa has been built further down. Meanwhile, the fort of Dhankar, destroyed by an earthquake in 1975, now lies in ruins, but is still a place worthy of a visit. From the remnants of the fort one can see vast expanses of the Spiti valley. Dhankar is also of art historical importance. Dhankar Monastery is recognized by the World Monuments Fund as one of the Hundred Most Endangered Sites in the world.

Before we hit the village, the confluence view attracted us very much and we couldn’t stop ourselves to click the view and ourselves.

Things to do in Dhankar Village
1) Visit Dhankar Monastery
2) Visit New Monastery
3) Dhankar Lake Trek

There was one restaurant which was operational and so the first thing that we did after reaching there was to order food before we started for Dhankar lake trek. The restaurant was on inside area of the new monastery premise.
About Dhankar Lake – click on this link to read about it –http://mainedekhahai.com/dhankar-village-dhankar-trek-and-dhankar-monastery/

From Dhankar Village to Lhalung Village, each view on the drive was of postcard view.

And who knew, a stay in heaven was gonna be experienced!

Lhalung- The village has 45 homes is 14 km from the main road and is the largest in the Lingti valley.

The name Lhalun literally means ‘land of the gods’ (lha = deities, devtas; lung = land, area) and it is said that the Lhalung Devta is head of all the Devtas of the valley and emerges from the Tangmar mountain beyond the village. This mountain is said to change colour depending on the moods of the devtas or deities; red showing anger, yellow, happiness, etc.

Room with a view

Lhalung Village

The bud 🙂

I had never stayed in a home stay. Hence I was curious and was wondering about it. We were welcomed by him while we started walking with our luggage to our home for that day.

                                          The welcoming Boy of Lhalunga

Our house at Lhalunga for that day

The lady host of the house at Lhalunga 🙂

Home stay experience at Lhalunga – click on the link to read – http://mainedekhahai.com/heavenly-home-stay-at-lhalung/

Day 6- LHALUNG-PIN VALLEY-MUDH VILLAGE-KAZA (12450 Feet)

Post yummy breakfast, we bid goodbye to our hosts and visited Lhalunga monastery. It  is one of the oldest found in the region. There is also a sacred tree here which may be as old as the earliest monastery.

Thousand of years old tree in the Monastery Premise 🙂

The happy life of kids going to school in Lhalung

Dudes 😉

The happy Moment with the kids and the monk

And then I met ‘innocence’ 🙂
Have you met innocence in a while,
And have waved a hello 🙋.
Have you got engaged with the innocence,
And brought her closer.
Have you shared a smile with her, 
And told the unusual tales.
Have you gone for a walk with her,
Saying nothing.
Have you heard each other,
To the best.
Have you hugged her tight,
And danced till you both got tired.
I met innocence Last to last week…
The curled hair of hers folded in mud..
Brought glory.
The over flowing nosy was cute to handle,
And short talks with her is all I have to remember.

 

P.S. She is Amira. We met outside monastery at Lhalung. The best part of Himachal is the fact that every child goes to school. She does too.

We then drove to Pin Valley.
About Pin Valley, Click on the Link to read about it -http://mainedekhahai.com/a-wonder-valley-called-pin-valley/

Today we were to reach Kaza from Pin valley Via Mudh. We stayed in Kazaa for 3 nights.

We experienced light rain at Mudh. The weather so pleasant and view another post card place.
More views of Mudh can be viewed through this link – http://mainedekhahai.com/solitude-and-peace-driven-mudh-village-in-pin-valley/
The very entry to Kaza was out of the world and serene.

The very first place we went to in Kaza was Kaza Market. It is the only big  market in Spiti region. From petrol pumps to medical shop everything is here ONLY.

(I have crowning in my teeth and I had severe pain in the teeth due to high altitude and air pressure from last three days, normal pain killer didn’t work and unfortunately I was not carrying my tooth pain relief medicine, hence Kaza medical shop held very much importance. Though I didn’t get the medicine which I wanted I got the alternate. This medical shop was a bliss for me and a big time relief.) Learning – one must always carry the medicines along for any kind of ailment while travelling to weird climatic conditioned places.

In the market I first figured out one and only medical shop, then we found bakeries, cafes, gift shops, and beauty parlor too. We had a great time walking through the place.

On both the days we ended up having lunch at Himalayn Café.

That evening the moon was shining with its full spirit. The mountain top and the moon looked so soothing that like always I kept watching it for hours and framed those moments for you-

We partied that night for it was birthday of one of us (Priyesh). In 6 days we were bonded enough to celebrate together. Kaza market helped us to manage a cake and rest was all pre arranged 😉 . In the garden area of our stay, we managed lights through the cab lights and so was the music arranged, thanks to our drivers. On that cold 5 degree temperature night we danced madly and crazily. We danced on our collection of music, did zumba and since the drivers were himachali , they taught us Himachali dance. It was so much fun to miss now and to remember and smile and be proud of the moments we have had together.

Day 7- KAZA- KIBBER- KI MONASTERY -LHANGZA-KOMIK-HIKKIM
It was a super morning at Kaza, the window view to the field one both was honey to eyes. 🙂

It was time to visit Village Komik, Hikkim, Langza, Kibber and the very famous Ki (Key) Monastery.
1st stop – Kibber Village –
Kibber  is a village high in the Spiti Valley in the Himalayas at 4270 metres or 14,200 ft in Himachal Pradesh in northern India. It contains a monastery and the Kibber Wildlife Sanctuary. Kibber lies in a narrow valley on the summit of a limestone rock. It is located 16 kilometres from Kaza and a bus service connects them in the milder summer months. Agriculture forms the backbone of the local economy and lush green fields are abundant.
Click the link to read about Kibber – http://mainedekhahai.com/kibber-the-amazement-of-spiti/

2nd Spot- Ki (Key) Monastery –
Ki (Key) Gompa is a Tibetan Buddhist monastery located on top of a hill at an altitude of 4,166 metres (13,668 ft) above sea level, close to the Spiti River, in the Spiti Valley of Himachal Pradesh, Lahaul and Spiti district, India.

It is the biggest monastery of Spiti Valley and a religious training centre for Lamas. It reportedly had 350 monks. Being remotely located atop a hill overlooking endless plains, the Key/ Ki monastery is an oblivious choice of calm and peace.

Key Monastery

Click the link to read about my experience at Ki Monastery. http://mainedekhahai.com/ki-monastery-the-biggest-monastery-of-spiti-valley/

3rd Spot- Langza

Nestled between the mountains in a bowl shaped area in the Spiti Valley is a small remote village named Langza. This village is situated at an altitude of 14,500 feet above sea level in the Lahaul and Spiti district of Himachal Pradesh in northern India. Langza trek takes you back to the prehistoric era when Spiti was submerged by the Tethys Sea as you explore a land very rich with fossils of marine animals and plants which were here millions of years ago. 

We crossed the village and reached Komic though such serene way –

4th Spot – Komic
The picturesque Lahaul and Spiti Valley embraces several treasures in its vicinity and Komic is one such place, which is set beautifully amid the stunning mountains in the state of Himachal Pradesh in North India. Komik Village is the highest village in Asia and is located at a height of 18,000 feet above sea level.

Komic which means ‘eye of a snow cock’ has a population of 84 people.

Read more about Komic through this link – http://mainedekhahai.com/experience-of-being-in-komic-worlds-highest-village/

4th Spot- Hikkim – World’s highest Post office – 17214 feet above sea level.

Yes, you read it right

It was a spellbound state to be there. Read out our experience of being at the World’s highest Post office through this link- http://mainedekhahai.com/hikkim-spiti-india-has-worlds-highest-post-office/

We came back to Kaza that night with astounding views and memories.

 

Day 8- KAZA- LOSAR- CHANDRATAL LAKE (14000 feet)

May be this is what is called freedom to learn and be you 😉 KIds at Kaza

That morning of Kaza was indeed beautiful and exciting since today we aimed to reach the dreamy and for a moon lover the real check on dream lake called Chandratal lake.

The morning was further beautiful because of the way we took to via Losar and Kunzum pass.
The drive it seemed was through the clouds or was it the clouds making us fly amongst the dramatic and furnished mountain ranges and gompas. That road journey was no less than a heavenly dream.

We stopped in between to feel the road and pose with it.

On the way we found wild flowers and animals, equally beautiful as the regular one’s are. In fact in that barren land, any color was hope for a better life and time and the best time we were having.

Introducing one and only hand pump on this way. Blue colored. In this dry land, this hand pump was another example of human evolution and hardship for survival.

The very first fall to be crossed had arrived then and we managed to cross it well. But this was the first and the easiest, we were told.

We had lunch at Losar. Typical alu ka paratha and pudina wali chai. This is how it looked like, a different beverage of this region-

The view of the place-

We found real yaks in group walk and having their time of lives. It was like we were driving through the wild life and that wild life was less dangerous than the real life people around.

As we were approaching the Kunzum pass, the road was becoming tougher and rough. We came across an auto on that way which was driven by two Germans. They were on their own expedition to figure out the possibility of drive of an auto in such climate and road condition.


And then there we were at Kunzum pass.

Kunzum Pass (Tibetan: Kunzum La, (el. 4,590 m or 15,060 ft), is a high mountain pass on the eastern Kunzum Range of the Himalayas some 122 km (76 mi) from Manali. It connects the Kullu Valley and Lahaul Valley with the Spiti Valley of Himachal Pradesh, India. There is also a 9 km trek to the Moon Lake of the Chandratal from the Kunzum Pass, where we were to go driving.

Read about the air ad climate at Kunzum Pass through this link- http://mainedekhahai.com/kunzum-pass-bringing-experience-of-its-kind-chilling-and-very-chilling/

For all those who had never seen and touched snow before, it was a delight to find some on the way and our driver had a different way to enjoy it. He made a ball of it and had it in his mouth like we generally eat chuski. Little joys of the hills…
Post kunzum pass, another fall was to be crossed and this one was tricky. We managed to cross it well –

The way was becoming beautiful and tougher .

And then by late afternoon, we reached Chandratal Lake base camp. It was time to live in a luxurious tent with attached restroom, a double bed with nice quilt.

It was time to live under the roof made up of cloth.
It was time to trek.
It was time to watch moon playing hide and seek with clouds for us. And that too at a Moon lake,Chandratal Lake.
Post checking in the allotted tents, we drove for a km to the point from where we had to start the trek to Chandratal Lake.

The Chandratal experience, read through this link –http://mainedekhahai.com/chandratal-the-moon-lake-dreamy-destination-in-spiti/

 

We were strictly told by our drivers to start from Cahdratal lake to Manali via Chhatru on time at around 6 because of the rough and tough way. It rained entire night and the temperature went down, yet we all made sure we start on time.

Day 9- CHANDRATAL LAKE- MANALI (6726 Feet)We started on time, the third fall of the trip and that day’s first fall was to be crossed. We walked through it.

They were making the way possible enough to drive through

And then there was way filled with water up to the feet. On such ways, a small mistake while driving can lead to Tyre puncture; which us normal in this region, it can also let the car’s Tyre get stuck between the rocks. Hence one has to be cautious. Though our drivers were experienced and sound, one of the cars got stuck and it was a real task to make it move out. the adventure had started but the real adventure was to come.

We managed through the way and reached Chhatru Village, where we were suppose to have lunch and move to Manali via Rohtang pass. Chhatru had something more than lunch for us, which we were just not aware of.

As soon as we stopped, Ram bhaiya said ‘ Madam yahan time lagega, rasta band hai.’ I asked him how did he know about the way, on which he said that since there are already cars parked. People don’t stop here for long, since there were so many of cars hence it was clear to him that there is something wrong.

We thought there might be a problem but will get resolved. After half an hour we got to know that there is a massive landslide which has happened at two points between Chhatru and Rohtang pass and till the bulldozer comes for rescue through BRO and the road repairs we couldn’t move. We walked for 2 km to see the fourth fall, to be crossed. We saw the speed of the melting glacier candidly and the way people were stuck. That was just a beginning and this was a trailer.

There is fall on this way called PAGAL NALA and we were told that crossing that is the main task which was about 16 km away.

After 2 hours we understood that we were stuck and stuck badly. For how many days no one knew. We were restless and afraid since we had our flights and bus bookings for the next day from Manali and Delhi. So, a bit about Chhatru , click on the link to read the beauty witnessed and adventure we had in Chhatru –http://mainedekhahai.com/the-most-happening-and-adventurous-part-of-our-trip-to-spiti-was-experienced-in-chhatru/

Day 10- Chhatru to Manali 

Around 11 am we got to hear the good news and we rushed to cross the dangerous patch.

The fifth fall was to be crossed, which is known as Pagal nala. Each one of us got out of the car, took our shoes off, folded our pants and made ourselves mentally ready to walk through the gushing, chilled water through the stony base and to help each other to cross the way.

We all managed to do a great job. Drivers did their bit and got the cab cross the way safely.

The sixth fall was to be crossed and the water there was directly from the melting glacier, it was so chilled that it gave rashes to the feet. It was crazy to cross this as the water level was high.

Yet we managed to cross these falls well on time and most importantly safely, Thanks for BRO and the drivers.

Uncertainty kills. It makes you curious and anxious. It is one difficult thing to come over. The lesson from this uncertain situation was this that sometimes you should let things/situations flow on their own and you should just participate as you are required or expected to be. We would have not been able to do anything. There was no way out. it was just the situation getting resolved on its own and of course others efforts that we crossed the way safely.

We reached Manali by 6 pm and straight away submitted our luggage at the cloak room of the bus station and freshen up, had good food after a day and boarded the bus to Delhi at night.

We were back with fantastic memories, everlasting bonds, lessons, framed moments, self awakening, dreams fulfilled and I am amazed about myself that though today on 27th Sep, I am completing this article after 2 months and 24 days, each moment of this trip is firm in my mind. Every detail is as it is. Thank you travelling me this far 🙂 . You must travel to this place once in your life, if you like anything about this article.

Happy Traveling.

Julley 🙂

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