Top 5 Hikes in India

Guest posts are always welcome on my website. This guest post is written by Morgan (mom of two kids); which is about the best hikes in India for visual pleasure. So, not wasting any more time & here is what this guy has to say about top 5 hikes in India.

5 Awesome Hikes to Take in India for Great Views

 

India offers numerous hiking trails and it’s definitely a paradise for the hikers. From snow-covered mountains to beautiful meadows to gushing streams and waterfalls, India has it all. It doesn’t matter if you are a hardcore hiker or a backpacker. There are numerous hiking regions with varying level of difficulties. With so many places available, it’s hard to decide which one to go to. We have come up with five awesome hiking place to go where you can have the best time of your life.

Hemkund and Valley of Flowers, Garhwal

 

At an altitude of 3,600 meters above sea level, the valley of flowers is an utter bliss. It’s the perfect place to start your Himalayan hiking journey as it’s one of those rare natural botanical gardens where flowers bloom in every possible color you can imagine. The best time to visit Hemkund is right after the monsoon season, during July, August, and early September, as the valley is covered with snow during the winter. This picture perfect place has the tranquil river Pushpawati flowing in the middle with snow-clad mountains on one side and a tall sky-high cliff on the other.
There are about 520 species of flowering plants and animals such as Himalayan Black bears, Brown bears, birds and butterflies call this place their home. There are many local tales that the trekkers fall unconscious on the valley with the heavy smell of flowers. (Just giving you some heads up)
This place is a paradise for nature and flower lovers. Every year thousands of hikers gather up during the blossom season to witness the extravagant scenario. It’s a moderately difficult hike that takes about 5 to 6 days to compete. Don’t bother taking up foods along as there are plenty of eateries on the way. Just enjoy the scenic sight of snowy mountains and the riot of colors.
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Great lakes, Jammu and Kashmir

Kashmir’s divine beauty needs no introduction. The hike at the Great lakes will give you an experience that you’ll cherish forever. As the Mughal Emperor Jahangir once said “If there is Heaven on Earth, it is here”, the ethereal beauty of Kashmir surely does justice to the saying.
The best time to enjoy this astounding place is from June to August when the trekking route is lush green and covered in thousands of blooming flowers. This is quite a challenging trek that takes about 7 to 8 days to complete. The highest altitude is at about 13,750 ft. with an approximate route of 63km long. This hiking experience will not only challenge you physically, but it will also challenge your inner strength.
The hiking trip begins at Shitkati. You’ll experience the true beauty of nature on your way from Shitkati to Sonamarg. The greenery of the place will mesmerize you with every passing minute. The next route will take you from Nachnai Pass to Vishanshar Lake. The Vishashar Lake is a serene beauty that is surrounded by four mountains. Just after 1.2km ahead, another beauty awaits the Kishansar Lake. The maximum altitude is reached at Gadsar Pass, the final destination.
Even though the hike is quite a difficult one, but this expedition will undoubtedly give you heaven on earth experience.

Great Lakes Best Hikes In India

Har Ki Dun Valley, Uttarakhand

Haar ki dun is one of those delightful trekking places that you can experience both during winter and summer. It’s one of the most beautiful valleys in the Western Himalayas. It has an altitude of about 3500m above the sea level. You can access this place through Govind national park which is famous for its rich content of flora and fauna. This valley will give you a vintage feeling with the adjacent snow-covered peaks and alpine vegetation.
This cradle shaped valley has local people who have been living here for around 3000 years. Birds and animals are not abundant in this region but you can spot some black bears, wild boars and few other kinds of animals if your luck favors. Har Ki Dun means the valley of Gods and this valley does live up to its name. There are four villages in this valley named Datmir, Gangad, Puani, and Osla. These villages can be accessed only by trekking. Many streams eventually join the main river is Supin. The divine meadows, wildflowers and the lush green forest create a beautiful sight during the monsoon. During winter the snow covered mountains create a picturesque sight. The whole valley stays covered in snow from the month of December to April.
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Rajmachi Fort

If you’re upset that you can’t make time for the long hikes then the Rajmachi Fort is the perfect place for you. This beautiful trek is blessed with lush green mountains, countless waterfalls, vast plateaus and many more. It has two forts named Shrivardhan and Manaranjan.  The Rajmachi Fort is situated in between the mesmerizing hills of Sahyadri. Rajmachi fort is one of the most visited hiking places in India. Hikers and nature lovers gather here to witness this ethereal beauty from time to time.
This place has a splendid view especially during the monsoon months of June to August when the mountains are covered in fresh greenery. This is a perfect place for the beginner level hikers. The trekking distance is 16km from Lonavala. However, there are various routes available. From the base village, it takes about one hour to reach the top with few stops for snacks in between. Remember, if you’re hiking during the monsoon be extra cautious as the routes get a bit slippery during this time. The breathtaking view from the base camp to the top will give you an experience of a lifetime.
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Stok Kangri, Ladhak

There are many long and short trails in the Leh-Ladhak district. Stok Kangri is the most challenging one you’ll face here and undoubtedly the best trails of all.  This is India’s highest trekking point at a jaw-dropping 6,153 meters, which is about seventy percent of Mount Everest. This trek is no child’s game as it requires rigorous dedication, hard work, and willpower to complete. Weather plays a very vital role in this trek. One minute it can bright and sunny then the next minute it can turn in to blizzard. Most people return without climbing the peak as it gets too dangerous sometimes.
Prior experience and health fitness are prime considerations for this hike. Before the journey starts, you need to get accustomed to the extreme weather of this place. The entire hiking journey will take around 9 to 10 days. The route starts from the Stok village which is so beautiful that it seems to have been taken out of a storybook. The mesmerizing views of Ladakh Range, Zanskar Range, and the city of Leh are an absolute treat for the eyes.
The best time to opt for this expedition is from July to September. Every year hikers from all around the world come to participate in the Stok Kangri Summit. Even if you don’t reach the peak, you’ll surely cherish this divine experience for the rest of your life.

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About Me

Hey all, I am Morgan, a mom with two kids. I go hiking & campingat least once a year (unless it is too cold outside). I run a blog called Outdoor Spider to talk about products you might need while living outside for a day or more.

The guest post was on hikes in India for visual pleasure. If you are interested in sharing your content on my blog. I would be happy to post some.

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Prashar Lake: So Deep, It Touches Your Soul

Prashar lake is one of the most unexplored lakes near Mandi, Himachal Pradesh. Prashar lake trek starts from the Baggi village which is around 20 km from Mandi. I’ve been wanting to visit this lake for a year and suddenly in the first week of March, I decided to trek solo.

It was solo travel, but in reality, I wasn’t traveling or trekking solo. There were lots of people I met which never made me feel alone. I thought it was up to me to go down which path, whether to make friends during my journey or choose my own path and enjoy my own moments.

Delhi to Mandi(Prashar Lake)

I took a bus from Kashmiri gate at 6:30 PM on 9 March 2018 which left me at Mandi around 6 AM the next day. The first bus from Mandi to Baggi village leaves at around 8 AM. I took a bus to Shegli immediately which is 4 km from Baggi village. I met a group which was also going to the trek. I walked and hitchhiked to Baggi village.

There were a few cafes at Baggi village where I did my breakfast. Prices were nominal, not so costly. I had a few parathas there and filled up my water bottles.

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Prashar Lake trek from Baggi village:

I started my trek at 10 AM from Baggi village with the group I met on the bus. The trek started from crossing a naala and then walking straight for around a km on the rocky path. Thereafter, I entered the thick dense pine forests. It was so beautiful in between those pine trees and I didn’t meet any other person on the trek except the group which I met on the bus. I found only one source of water in the whole trek. So, it was good that I carried enough water with me. Before one km from the lake, I reached this open area and found some mud houses. It was an amazing feeling to not find a single soul in the range of a km.

After trekking for around 4 hours, I reached this beautiful peaceful lake and it was all worth it. Prashar temple also lies just near the lake and its architecture was awe-inspiring.

Prashar Lake

The lake is surrounded by the snow-capped peaks of some large mountains. There is a 360-degree view of mountain ranges from the top area of the lake. Peaks of Triund, Indrahar Pass, Chamba, Hanuman Tibba, Spiti, Kinnaur and some other mountain ranges are visible from the top. There is no other two-day trek which gives such pleasant views within such a short distance.

Camp Site

I had my own sleeping bag with me and I knew that there were dorm rooms available in the temple. I went to the temple and talked to the Pandit Ji about the room and he told me to talk to the caretaker. Caretaker bhaiya showed me the room and gave me a mattress. And man, I swear that was one of the best nights of my life. I could see the lake from my window and it was amazing. After putting my backpack in my room, I went outside and ate some Maggi. I spent my entire evening watching the beautiful sunset and then ate Rajma Chawal and slept.

A local guy told me that there is a beautiful site 2 km from the Parashar lake. I followed the road, took a wrong turn and reached this place and enjoyed this stunning sunset alone.

Random place

Prashar lake to Mandi:

I wanted to go down by bus as I trekked while coming up here. So, I enquired about the bus from the people and took it to reach Mandi at 4:30 PM. Drive from Prashar Lake to Mandi was a treat. The bus went through some muddy path in between the lush green valley which was breathtaking for me. I ate some food at Mandi Bus Stand and took the bus to Delhi which reached at 5 AM.

Some amazing stories about this place

  • Till now, various attempts have been made to find the depth of this lake but no one was successful. Isn’t it astonishing in the 21st century?
  • It is believed that Prashar temple is built in the era of Mahabharata and the lake was created by Bhim’s elbow push.
  • No one is allowed to enter the fencing around the lake except the local people who use this lake as a source of water.
  • It is said that the small island which is in the middle of the lake changes its location with respect to the time of the year.
  • The water of this lake is used for drinking by the local people and it tastes amazing.

Useful Information:

  • Tents are available itself near the Prashar lake at the cost of Rs. 300-500
  • Bus from Mandi to Baggi village leaves at around 8 AM and costs around 50/-
  • There are a few cafes in Baggi village where you can eat and pack your lunch for the trek as there are no shops during the trek.
  • Direct buses also run from Mandi to Prashar lake which is the same bus that goes via Baggi village and reaches Prashar lake at 11 AM. The same bus leaves for Mandi at 1:15 PM and reaches Mandi at 4:30 PM.
  • Temple may also be closed in the month of January and February.
  • Various buses run from Delhi to Mandi in the evening and take around 11-12 hours to reach. The prices of Roadways HRTC bus is 530/-, Himmani Deluxe non-AC is 730/- and Himsuta AC Bus is around 1100/-. Prefer HRTC buses over the private ones.
  • This trek can be done within the budget of 1400-2000 depending on which bus you take and where you stay. I did this trek in 1400/-
  • You can take your tent if you want and camp near the lake.
  • Cost of food is nominal near the lake. Maggi costs 30/- and Rajma Chawal cost 60/-
  • Only Jio and Airtel networks are available at the lake.

Best season to visit:

This trek can be done at any time of the year. In winters, the lake freezes, so for the people who love snow, this lake is a blessing.

In summers, the area around the lake is fully green. This trek should be avoided in the Monsoon season as the trail gets slippery.

Prashar Lake

Prashar Lake temperature:

Temperature goes below -4 degree Celsius in the months of January and February. While in the other seasons, it’s between 10-15 degree Celsius.

Whenever you visit this lake, use water of the lake for drinking over plastic bottles. If you purchase some bottles then please take them to Mandi with you because it’s very hard to transfer all the plastics. Let’s make this beautiful lake pollution free.

This post is written by Mayank Gupta & one can follow his work at www.travelfortranquility.com.