Every Trekker or a traveler always dreams about Himalayan treks. India is blessed with the great beauty of Himalaya and every Indian wants to experience this beauty at least once in a life.You must do this trek If you want to do the Himalayan trek, you have little experience of trekking and still want to experience high altitude. Roopkund is a very high altitude trek. It climbs to 15,700 feet, which is higher than Mt Blanc, Europe’s highest summit! There are very few trails in our country that are as safe for beginners as the Roopkund trail is and yet climb to such a high altitude.
Roopkund lake is situated in state Uttarakhand of Garhwal region, in Chamoli district. It is located in the Himalayas and rests at an altitude of nearly 4,800 meters.This lake is famous due to more than five hundred skeletons of humans that are found at the edge of the lake.These are believed to be the skeletons of the heroes who had fought here in the earlier times. Along with the skeletons of humans, you can also find the skeletons of horses and other animals. There are reports that these skeletons belong to the 12th century to the 15th century.
Sagar Narvane, Trekker, Wanderer, Hobbyist photographer, Who loves to Capture special moments of life and One Of our members of CrazyUS trekkers group who has completed this trek successfully. So here is the interview With our crazy Trekker Sagar:
Some Basic Information About Roopkund Trek:
- Region: Chamoli, Uttarakhand
- Duration: 8 Days
- Grade: Moderate To Difficult
- Max Altitude: 15,696 Ft.
- Approx Trekking Km: 53 Kms.
- Who can go: Someone having prior trek experience.
- Best Time to Trek– Pre Monsoon Season: May first week to June end and in Post monsoon Season: September 2nd week to Nov first week.
Q: How You decided to go for Roopkund Trek?
Sagar: “When” I heard somewhere “If you are into trekking in India, the Roopkund trek you must do!”. I immediately became so much curious and enthusiastic about this place, I started digging and to collect all the details of this place. Thereafter, reading many blogs, sites and hearing all info from people, in almost couple of month I decided to go and explore Roopkund.I completed this trek with Adventure Nation trekkers group.
Q: What was your trek Itinerary and overall journey?
Sagar: The total trek journey of Roopkund was 8 days and 7 nights, which was an adventurous journey that passes through many exotic and beautiful locations. As you trek towards the lake, you would find lush green grassy land and conifer forest ranging towards the fall of hills. Thereafter the trek takes its way along the Pindar River. During trek days, you would have awesome and panoramic sceneries for your eyes.
Day 1: Getting to the Base camp: Kathgdam – Lohajung(altitude: 2130, duration: 9-10 hrs)
I started a journey from Pune.I traveled to Delhi by flight, then from Delhi to Kathgodam, from here the trekker group had arranged a couple of pickup vans to pick us and drop to Lohajung which is the start point of the trek.
Trek starts from Lohajung, situated at the elevation of 3200 mts, this joint has narrow and curvy roads that cross from one slope of the mountain to other.While crossing the mountain, we witnessed amazing views of the valley, Trees, drive with the rivers Ganga and Alaknanda keeping us company till we turn right for the Pinder valley and along with beautiful Kumaon Mountains via Almora and Kausani. After a glimpse at Tharali, the sight of Nanda Ghunti welcomes you to Lohajung. A village with wonderful views of Didina valley, Lohajung is a nerve center of 12-15 villages. The name, as the locals say, comes from the myth that Goddess Parvati had a war (Jung) with a demon Lohasur here.We reached and reported to Lohajung by evening; our stay was in the Guest House on sharing basis.After eve snacks and dinner we had a briefing about next day’s trek. Retired to bed early on that day to give me a good long and healthy sleep.
Day 2: Lohajung to Didna Village (Altitude: 2550m, Duration: 5-6 hrs)
On the second day of the trek, we started heading towards the Didna Village. We took the Lord Curzon trail from Lohajung and followed a steady uphill trek through the Lohajung Pass, which eventually leads to a downhill trail to the Bedni River. We Crossed the bridge over the river and traversed through mixed forests of oak and bamboo to arrive at Didna Village.Our stay house apparently got surrounded by cloud and fog.
Day 03: Didna – Ali Bugyal (Altitude: 3150m, Duration: 6-7 hrs)
On the third day, we started climbing to Ali Bugyal. A steady ascent through thick oak forests was brought us to the alpine grazing meadows, called Ali Bugyal. It was really the ideal place to take a break, and let the vastness of the meadow, the clear sky and the enchanting view of the Trishul peak give us peace and happiness. Here, was the stunning view of the Garhwal Himalayas ranges appears as ahead of us. Here, I spotted some Himalayan sheeps. there were almost 200 and more, furry breeds. Had first time experienced the rain shower here, took one halt at Maggie point with trekking buddies.In the evening we arrived at the finest camping site near the Himalayas and stayed overnight in tents.
Day 04: Ali Bugyal – Ghora Lotani (Altitude: 3650m, Duration: 4-5 hrs)
During this trek, we had seen the most beautiful meadow of the breathtaking site of Ghora Lotani. Also had passed through Bedni Bugyal with grazing pastures, unending open views and the view of the Trishul and Nanda Ghunti peaks. It was a mystical experience to walk through clouds.
Day 05: Ghora Lotani – Bhagwabasa (Altitude: 4100m, Duration: 7-8 hrs)
Trek started with climbing meadow slopes, up to the ridges to Kaluvinayak shrine which showed us the most memorable views of the Neelkanth, Chaukhambha and Hathi peaks. During this trek, we passed though Patar Nachauni where again we experienced a beautiful and scenic meadow.
Day 06: Bhagwabasa – Roopkund (5029m,7-8 hr)
On this eve and night, I experienced the most extreme cold(almost -6 to -8 degree) hence we all dressed with 5-6 layers of cloths. On next day’s dawn, we woke up at 3 am, freshen up and started further trek journey to reach Roopkund before sunrise. On the way, it was a light showering of rain for some time, but without taking any halt we continued our trek, with a lot of excitement, because we were nearer to our destination.
We were climbing up to Roopkund; the entire snowy path was a bit difficult. Some parts of the slope were steep but most parts were trekkable with ease. All mountains were covered with snowy flanks, some white and some bluish. Our guide had already given us some tricks to walk easily on snow. The setting was truly alpine and the thrill, high.
Finally, we reached there! mysterious Roopkund Lake..!! Fascinating..!!!
Roopkund Lake is hidden behind a ridge and remains elusive till you are almost directly upon it.It’s small, frozen and bleak body of ice. The sun was now on the horizon and gradually the surrounding cirques of peaks were illuminated. I could saw some of the bones and Skelton in the lake because the lake was partially frozen. It was the unbelievable moment of my life..!!
As per Local guides, “Human and horse bones were set in a big pile close to the lake, Radiocarbon dating of the bones by the researchers from Oxford University has determined them to be over thousand years old.”
Roopkund – Bhagwabasa – Bedni Bugyal:
The Same day, after site seeing of Roopkund lake, the mystical skeletons and exploring the mountains, we started backward trek journey to Bhagwabasa, then to Bedni Bugyal for night stay.
Day 07: Bedni Bugyal- Wan– Lohajung (Altitude: 5029m, Duration: 7-8 hrs)
It was a great journey back to Lohajung via Wan. The path was fairly simple and we did not feel any distress throughout. We crossed the oak forest as we went and the scenic beauty was just mesmerizing. We saw the end of meadows after a few minutes. On that day, we had astonished by looking at the Trishul hill on our way back from Bedni Bugyal to Wan.
Day 08: Lohajung – Kathgodam
We followed the same path which we had while coming to Lohajung from Kathgodam. We reached Kathgodam at 8pm since our train back to Delhi was scheduled at 10pm.
Q4. So how you will describe the overall Roopkund Experience?
It was a breathtaking, stunning, stupendous experience of Roopkund trek. I think every trekker should go and experience a trekking adventure that touches the core of your heart by its sheer intensity and thrill. It is an adventure that is rare on most treks which gives a treat of beautiful views of endless Meadows and Himalayas to your eyes ..!!.
So this was the beautiful experience narrated by Sagar. Hope you liked his trekking journey!
Some more information about traveling to Roopkund:
How to Reach:
The Kathgodam station is one of the main stations in the district and it is an old station. It has good connectivity from cities like Lucknow, Delhi, and Howrah. Tickets from Delhi to Kathgodam by train cost around Rs. 150 for a second class sleeper ticket and Rs. 400 for a third A/C sleeper ticket. It is essential to book the tickets at least one month in advance as this route is always in demand.
From Delhi take the Ranikhet Express (15013) which departs at 22:30 and arrives at Kathgodam 05:05.or take the Uttar sampark Kranti (15035) Departs Delhi at 16.00 and arrives at Kathgodam at 22:40.It takes 6 – 7 hrs to reach Kathgodam. From Dehradun take the Doon Express (13009).
By Bus :
Regular buses ply from ISBT Delhi Anand Vihar station to Kathgodam. Buses that go to Nainital stops at Haldwani which is a twin town of Kathgodham (8 hrs. Journey).
Essentials For Himalayan Treks like Roopkund
So this was the beautiful experience narrated by Sagar. Hope you liked his trekking journey!
Till my next travel story,
Loads Of Love,