Kheerganga trek:- HimachalDiaries/sudden back-pack
Himachal diaries:- Sudden back-pack,Kheerganga trek.
Hello Guys,this is Kumar Rajan ,a regular blogger on GoTrippyy!! Today I am gonna share my travel experience what I had while trekking to Khirganga,an awesome place in Parvati valley.
We started our trip from Delhi. We boarded the HRTC bus at around 10 P.M. These buses offers the cheapest tickets.If you are a solo-traveller and you are low on budget, I will advise you to take a HRTC bus in order to go to Himachal.
Starting Point : Barshani Dam Site
How to reach the starting point:
One can get shared taxis from Kullu/Kasol/Manali to reach here. Its easy to find, roads are properly marked. You have to bargain for rates with the taxi-walas.
Alternatively, you can get a local bus to reach Manikaran from Bhuntar. From Manikaran you can again take a bus which will drop you to Brshaini.
Duration: Depends on person to person.
Experienced Trekkers : 3-4 hours ascent,3-4 hours descent
First time trekker/ Newbie :5-6 hours easily.
So , you should have at-least 2 days for the entire trek. Its highly recommended to have 2 days as one can go up to Khirganga on day 1, then chill there in night and then come down the second day in the morning hours.
Distance: 12-13 Kms.
Things to carry: Keep your backpack light. I will advise you not to carry extra heavy stuff which you are not gonna use in 48 hours.
- Cameras+ Cellphones+ Power Bank
- Water Bottle
- Move/Iodex/any painkiller for just emergency
- Undergarments and Swimwear
*It depends on you to carry extra stuff, but these things are seriously recommended.
*it is suggested to carry cash as you can't find any ATM in Kheerganga.
Kheerganga is situated in Parvati Valley at a distance of around 20 kms from Manikaran. In order to start your trek towards Khirganga,you firstly need to reach the Barshaini. Your trek starts after you reach the Dam site. This trek leads through hilly wild terrain. Some patches of the trek are very difficult and at some point the slopes are quite steep.
For those who are beginners,I would like to comment that this trek is something you are'nt gonna forget for your whole life. Famous for its en-route attractions, one can enjoy the entire trek which is filled with tall green trees and natural lush vegetation. Once you will reach the top, the natural hot-water-spring experience is something that you will remember for a lifetime.
The hot water spring is situated near the Shiva Temple. The place is open for about 7 months in a year and is not permanently inhabited. The best time to visit Kheerganga is between the months of April and November when the weather remains pleasant and favorable. One can get a view of snow in Khirganga if luck favors and you are able to reach the Khirganga top in March. Winter months are best avoided as the snow makes the trail difficult to trek and the rocks become slippery. Continuing my story:---
Next morning, We reached Kullu bus-stand,where we took another connecting bus to Bhuntar. After reaching Bhuntar, we boarded another bus to Kasol. We reached Kasol after one and half hour. We spent the day in Kasol,explored local market and relaxed in the woods. In the evening, we returned to Manikaran. We sat for few hours with one of known persons of my travel companion. we had some pakodas and tea. Drizling started and we were suggested to reach Barshaini. We took a bus to Barshaini. I took a window seat near the driver. The road to Barshaini is so narrow that you dare not to look outside the window. I tried once or twice to look outside throuh the window and realized that this tour was going to be more adventurous.After reaching Barshaini,my friend found some familiar person,who also hosted us at night. We relaxed there at night.Even in the month of June,we experienced the chilling cold weather.We could hear the clear sound of water flowing in Parvati River. It was something that made me remember my childhood days when we used to live on the banks of river Baghmati(a tributory of Ganga) in my village. Next morning we left our heavy stuff in Barshaini only and started to trek towards the famous Khirganga After walking for around an hour,we reached an en-route village where we found a small cafe. We relaxed there for 10 minutes . We realized we were getting late, so we collected our belongings to hike again till the next stop which is Rudranaag. It is prohibitted for the common people to go near the waterfall area as it is believed that Gods take a bathe there.
After few minutes we reached another waterfall. Earlier there used to be a wooden bridge which is replaced by a newly constructed iron bridge.Parvati river flows below it. It's a picturesque place.You can take pictures
. You have to keep moving no matter how much you are tired . Its recommended to reach the Kheerganga before six as the route is wild and weather of the region is uncertain. Apart from from that you can also assume that there would be wild animals in woods as whole route is covered with trees. We reached the top around 5 pm. After the climb we went to our camp site, relaxed for few minutes and then we approached towards the natural hot-water spring. It is advised to take a bathe outside the spring firstly as the hot-water spring is believed to be holy. Spending few hours in the hot spring gives you such an experience which is way better than any of the 5 star Jacuzzi. All your pains during the day time are forgotten once you and take a bathe in the hot spring and rejuvenate yourself. One can enjoy and relax in warm water with exhilarating view of mountains around oneself. After having a bathe we visited the lord Shiva temple.
There are tents and dormitories available for accommodation. One can also have the booking by calling the owners of the tents. Generally, most of the restaurants converts into dorms in night and allow people to sleep inside. I readily became part of a group and in the dorm and we played cards while there were people playing guitars and singing songs. Outside we could find clear sky with bright stars, identified some of the constellations and kept on looking at the snow capped mountain peaks under the light of moon.
The tent was of Quechua so it successfully resisted the low temperature. The temperature generally reaches down to 4 to 5 degrees in night so its better to setup your tent, arrange water bottles and have some dinner early in night. The restaurants/cafes at the KheerGanga serves all sorts of food and though the food may not taste like grand hayat, but it gets edible when you are at peak of your hunger.Its always recommended to eat maggie as these guys got some amazing maggie cooking skills.
Apart from food and amazing scenic beauty, this area is quite famous for hash and marijuana which is part of the hippy culture of Tosh-Parvati Valley-Kheerganga belt. One can ask restaurant owners and they generally have stock which can keep you happy but not everyone amongst them can offer you .It depends upon your personal wit about whom you can contact. The locals sprint down the slopes with heavy goods on their back. There is simply no way that you can keep up with the locals when they ascend and descend.
Visiting the temple at early dawn before you proceed to the pool is customary. The biting cold is forgotten once your body is in that sulphur heated water. So next day, we took a dip in the holy water and gathered all our stuff to start the trek back to Barshaini. We started to descend at 10 A.M and reached Barshaini at 1 P.M. Where we found one of our known taxi driver. He dropped us to Manikaran. We took a bus for our onward journey to Manali and then to Jogindernagar,the hometown of my travel companion.
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