Trek Type : Weekend
Departure Dates 2019
Bangalore to Bangalore
Trek Grade : Moderate
Duration : 1 night ; 2 Days
Cost : ₹ 3,500/- Includes 5% GST
Group Size : 11 & above
Bali Pass Trek
An old trekking route from the tons river valley connecting to the Yamuna river valley. It continues to attract trekkers during the monsoon season when the snow melts and the pass is approachable from both sides. The pass is more approachable from the Har-ki-dun valley as the gradient is small and gives good time for the trekkers to acclimatize to the altitude. The trek starts from Sankri and passes through the Govind National Park, which is famous for its wildflowers. It also gives you an opportunity to visit the sacred lake at Ruinsara on the way and to explore the less-traveled path over Yamunotri pass to Yamunotri temple. The meadows near the lake are an ideal place to rest and explore the nearby peaks and passes. Another highlight of this trek is that it gives you the experience of camping above 4000m. The area is surrounded by Banderpoonch range and some of the famous peaks are kalanag, banderpoonch west, and Ruinsara. This region was made popular by Jack Gibson, a teacher at the Doon school in the late 1940's. The surrounding peaks and glaciers in the Swargarohini Range and Banderpoonch range are a mountaineer's delight.
Surmounting the Tortoise
Amedhikallu (height 2,800 m), near village Shishila in Dharmasthala, is one of the significant peaks of Charmadi range. The name Amedikallu is a combination of two words: Ame - Turtle and Dikkel – the Tulu word for Stove. Amedhikallu has a huge monolith at the top which appears like a giant turtle and three large stones which give an appearance of a stove. This peak is surrounded by many other important peaks of Western Ghats. Amedhikallu is considered to be one of the scenic treks in Karnataka and is a two day trek if one wants to make it to the peak comfortably. The starting point is Shishila village from where the trail starts. The initial trail is through a fairly dense forest, but the trail itself is pretty wide. Then the forest cover disappears slowly and beautiful grasslands appear which continues to the three stones, the dikkels at the summit.
A peek into heritage and nature
In ancient times, forts were considered as an ideal defence system. Forts that have survived today are representative of the engineering talent and strategic defence of ancient India.Today it is one of the wonders of the bygone era. Scholar Kautilya, popularly known as Chanakya the renowned author of his Sanskrit Arthsastra ancient Indian treatise on statecraft and Military strategy has classified forts into following types - Giridurga ( Hill fort ) , Jaladurga ( water fort ) , Shiladurga ( Rock fort ) and Vanadurga ( Forest fort ). Among the hill forts, Jamalabad is a hilltop Giridurga fortification in Jamalabad Village near Belthangady in Dakshina Kannada ( DK ) District of Karnataka. It is located in the Kudremukh range of hills. The fort lies at an altitude of 1700 ft.
The fort was formerly called Narasimha Ghada, which refers to the granite hill on which the fort is built. It is also referred locally as Jamalagadda or Gadayikallu. Originally a mud fort existed on the hilltop. The fort was reconstructed over the ruins of an older structure by Tippu Sultan in 1794 and named after his beloved mother, Jamal Bee. Tippu Sultan kept the fort in his possession for over 50 years.Though a local chieftain called Thimmappa Nayaka took possession of fort for a short period. The fort was captured by the British in 1799 during the 4th Mysore War. As per legend, those who are not favorable to Tippu were hurled down this fort to their death.The fort is inaccessible other than via a narrow path, with around 1876 steps to the fort that are cut out of the granite hill and lead all the way to the top with the help of french engineers.This strategy would mean that through a narrow passage small but well-armed group could indefinitely block a much larger force from entering the fort. Inside the fort, there is only one tank to store water. Remains of a single cannon lie at the top
The fort is accessible via a narrow path with about 1800 steps cut out of the granite hill. Inside the fort, there is a tank to store rain water. Remains of a single cannon lie at the top. Nothing much of the fortifications remain but hints of the fort wall with parapets are visible. This hillock fort has one room at the top. There is also an unmanned microwave repeater station on top of the hill.The Summit afford superb views of the surrounding landscape with paddy fields ,temples plantations , water bodies and the Kudremukh range of western ghats.
Note : Since it is a Heritage Protected Monument under ASI , one is not allowed to venture into fort without permission. And stay inside atop is prohibited.
Surmounting the Ox
Situated, near the of village of Byrapura in Mudigere taluk is one of the significant peaks of Charmadi range dominating the landscape towering height 2600 m and there are three approaches to this peak. The name yethinabhuja is a Synonymous of two words: Yethu - Ox and Bhuja - Shoulder . Ethinabhuja has a huge monolith at the top which appears like a giant turtle and 3 huge stones which give an appearance of a stove. This peak is surrounded by many other important peaks of Western Ghats. Yethinabhuja is considered to be one of the challenging trek in Karnataka and is a two day trek if one wants to make it to the peak comfortably. Shishila is a small village near Dharmastala.The starting point is Shishila village where from the trail starts. The initial trail is through a fairly dense forest, but the trail itself was pretty wide. Then the forest cover disappears slowly and grassland starts to appear which continues almost till you get on it.. The monolithic peak is almost 90-degrees, one needs to go around in a spiral to reach the peak and this part of the trek is through a very very dense vegetation and narrow trail which probably becomes waterfall during monsoon. Post-monsoon, one would need to clear vegetation using knife to make way.
The scenic hilly regions of western ghats have trails suitable for hikes with velvet green rolling hills , shola forest and perrineal streams flowing through them. Kudremukh known for its exotic beauty and flora - fauna has variety of trekking options inside the National Park. The beautiful part of Baamikonda and Kaltikki Trek is trekking on the outer fringes of Kudremukh national park is a less known getaway for those seeking less trodden trails. Surrounded by hilly ranges and enjoying the view of the adjoining peaks one can savor the beauty of Nature.Breathtaking view of Thirumaleguppe , Hirimaleguppe, Durgada betta , Gaumukha and Kudremukh Also, a beautiful ridge walk towards the peak makes it more than just a trekking experience to cherish for a life time.
Peak of View
Among the rolling hills in Kodagu , Nishane motte is a relatively less known peak in the Talacauvery / Bramhmagiri range of coorg. It lies to the south of Bhagamandala - The confluence of Kaveri, Sujyothi and Kannika rivers in a range which extends from Talacauvery in the north to Somamale ( Means hill in local dialect ) in the south in one contiguous stretch without any break, going through peaks like Nishani motte, Tumba male, and Tadiyandamol ( Highest peak in Coorg ). This stretch forms the border between Kannur / Kasargod districts in Kerala and Kodagu district in Karnataka.
Coorg with its misty mountains and dense forests, is often referred to as Scotland of India. They left behind a legacy, which is still an important source of national wealth. The well-laid coffee plantations in Coorg account for almost half of Karnataka's coffee production. And Karnataka continues to be India's largest producer of coffee. Other reminders of the colonial past are the spacious estate bungalows, many of which still have British names and the meandering roads that wind through the district.
A new trekking route explored crossing Kunt kal pass in Valley of Flowers of Garhwal Region.
There is something about the Himalayas not possessed by the Alps, something unseen and unknown, a charm that pervades every hour spent among them, a mystery intriguing and disturbing. Confronted by them, a man loses his grasp of ordinary things, perceiving himself as immortal, an entity capable of outdistancing all changes, all decay, all life, all death.
- Frank Smythe -
A Valley in Garhwal Himalayas gained such a distinction & popularity in no time with name ' Valley of flowers ' after the exploration by Frank Smythe who is officially credited with discovering the Valley of Flower in year 1931 after his Kamet Expedition.
Frank Smythe camped in valley of flowers for couple of days to collect material for his book “ The Valley of Flowers” and took with him seeds for the Botanical Gardens in Edinburgh, Scotland. In furtherance of Smythe’s work, Joan Margaret Legge went to the Valley of flowers in 1939 to study and collect few more flowers. She camped at Valley of flowers for a few days, and unfortunately lost her life when she slipped from a rock while picking flowers in the valley. Later a small memorial in the shape of a tombstone in the valley of flowers. As a reminder of the great love she had for the Himalayas, inscribed on her marble tombstone, in valley of flowers are the following words –
“I shall lift my eyes up to the mountains, from whence cometh my help.”
Valley of Flowers is at a height of 11000 feet to 14000 feet above sea level in western Himalayas. It is famous for its meadows of alpine flowers and outstanding natural beauty nearly 10 km in length, 2 km in width and concave in shape. Valley of flowers is divided along its length by a river called the Pushpavati and several rivulets and waterfalls rush down from the glacial deposits to merge with it. The Pushpavati joins the Laxman Ganga, flowing from Hemkund Sahib, at Ghangaria. This combined stream retains the Laxman Ganga till it meets Alaknanda river flowing from Badrinath at Govind Ghat.
A massive snow mountain with snow called Ghoda Parvat and Rataban peak , blocks valley of flowers at the other end. There is however, a traditional route which passes across a glacial pass at an altitude of 5091 mtr to Bank Kund and the pasture lands of the Gamsali Valley, via Bhuyandar Pass and eventually leads to Niti, the last Indian village on the border with Tibet. In valley of flowers, some of the flowers which can be seen are : Pink Primulas, Pedicularis, purple Campanullas , Erigerons , Golden Lily, creamy Anemones, large purple Asters, the rare white Androsace , the rosy-petalled Cypripedium,Morina Longifora, Green and chequered Fritillaries, pink Geranimus, purple , indigo-coloured Nomochairs, blue and yellow Pansies, the Himalayan Blue Poppy petals as blue as the ocean, white and red Potentillas, golden lilly, dwarf Rhododendrons - Buransh, Primulas in pink and blue and the deepest purple, Ranunculus, pink Epilobium, Bistorta and the heavily perfumed Brahma Kamal. The distance of Valley of flowers from Ghangria is 4 km and of Hemkund Sahib is 5 km away.
. The valley of flowers trek begins after crossing Alaknanda by a suspension bridge and then along a mountain path on the right bank of Laxman Ganga. The trek passes through dense vegetation and whispering forest and Laxman Ganga always appears to be hurrying down to meet Alaknanda down below. Then at 10th km of valley of flowers trek is the Bhyundar village from where a beautiful valley branches to Kagbhushandi taal. The Valley of Flowers trek continues along the Laxam Ganga and at 3 km from the Village, Laxman Ganga has to be crossed and then begins the final zigzag climb to Ghangaria. Ghangaria, nestled amidst the giant deodars, is conjuction and stopping place for both Hemkund Sahib or Lokpal lake and the Valley of Flowers. Camping in the Valley of Flowers National Park is not permitted , due to which visitors have to spend the night at Ghangaria only.
After 45 years a new route opens for Nature lovers at Bankund after crossing Ghangaria with Camping at Palsi Udiyar and Crossing the Kunkal Pass further reaching Hanumanchatti on Badrinath Road . Birds View of National Park and Nilgiri peak is a experience of lifetime.
Considered as one of the pristine and most beautiful valleys in Himachal , the Tosh is a feeder valley of the popular Parvati Valley which leads to the Pin - Parvati Pass. The Tosh Nallah meets the Parbati river at Pulga coming from the North. The Tosh valley is initially narrow but as you progress higher the valley starts to open up and you cross several beautiful meadows. At the head of the valley is the Tosh Glacier surrounded by some well known peaks: Papasura (6451m) & White Sail (6446m), Tiger Tooth peak etc. After crossing Sara Umga Pass, you descend into yet another beautiful Lahaul valley.
A Lake of Faith
Lakes have always beeen considered as sacred and worshippped in mountainaous regions. There are Several High Altitude lakes and pristine waterbodies tucked away in the gharwal region of Himalayas. Maldaru Taal or lake is one such remote ablong lake located South – Eastern region of Harkidhun valley at a altitude of 4800 m above sea level. The village folk of Puoni , Osla and Dharkot consider this lake as abode of gods. The path towards lake Itself is a memorable experience. Walking through pine forest and alpine meadows of Vishkopri and Raasi. The meadows carpeted with flowers in various hues and colors is a feast to eyes. Walking on the ridge is really exillarating experience. View of Swargarohini peak 6252 M from close quarters standing on the edge of lake is unique experience. The aroma that emanates from the flowers Brahma Kamal , Phen Kamal which profusely grows there is feast to eyes.
Borasu Pass Trek
One such pass among the many passes that cross into Himachal from Uttarakhand is Borasu.Situated at an elevation of 5450 m or 17,880 ft is challenge for season trekkers too . It connects the Tons river valley with Baspa river valley. The pass is open only for a few months before monsoons and then post monsoon before the winter sets in. It is a high but practical traverse into the great Kinnaur Valley, takes 5 -6 days from Har Ki Dun valley to Ranikhanda further into the Baspa Valley. From Har- ki - Dun the trail heads north along the Maninda Gad popularly known as Morinda Tal. Beyond that the ascent eases to Rathadu campsite 4000 m with a distant view of mountains and thereon the path winds up for 5km through a flower strewn narrow valley offering you a breathtaking diversity of landscapes and the trek is the perfect blend of lush meadows, riot of flowers such as Geranium , Bistorta etc Moraine path finally reaching Sauni Beda camping grounds.A steep climb on the rocky patch from here brings to Lamjoonga makeshift campsite.
After Lamjoonga campsite with a glacier to further up, climb strenuously, beware of crevasses in post monsoon on the either side of pass for about 4 km to the pass, one will be surprised and awestruck to see Nilkamal flowers in full bloom on the rocky patches along the pass and descent along the 60 -70 deg rocky slopes reaching Zupke glacier.The route through boulders requires some careful footing and proper balance.Beware and watchful of rockfalls and boulders coming down and there on further down to the Baspa river bed. The loose rocks and rockfall pose a danger, avoid attempting the pass in bad weather, during post monsoon.Cross the river by a bridge and reach the and Doaria camping grounds. From Doaria the trek to Chitkul is very easy on the legs. This trek is one of the best ways to get a feel and experience the Himalayan culture of Garhwal region and Kinnaur region respectively.