Monday, March 09, 2009

Back from heaven...

Last week I went for the most adventurous trip of my life and it is certainly one of my most memorable trips. Four of my friends and I went to McLeod Ganj which a little ahead of Dharmashala. The trip was for 3 days - one night at McLeod Ganj and one night at Triund. McLeod Ganj, which is 1750m above sea level is a tiny hill station dominated by Tibetian Population.

Let me first list the places to see and places to eat in McLeod Ganj. Among the places to see is a Monastery and a Temple which also has a Tibetian Museum (we missed it as it was closed on Monday). The Dalai Lama also has his residence over here. Also there is a Bhagsunag Temple which is a Shiv Temple. Another place that is a must see is Dip Tse - Chok Ling Gompa which is not very common with the tourist but certainly the main prayer hall is worth visiting. I was lucky to be able to witness the monks praying. As for the places to eat, this place is a paradise for a foodie. You get excellent Italian and Tibetian at very reasonable prices. I recommend Jimmy's Italian Kitchen and Oogo's CafĂ© Italiano for Italian food. Norling Restaurant for momos. Moonspeak Expresso also offered good breakfast. I had also had stuff at Malabar Restaurant(not recommended) and Lhamo’s Croissant.

The first day we reached in the evening. We could only visit the Bhagsunag Temple- it was closed by the time we reached it. But we did not bother to go back there. We had planned to trek(for the first time) to Triund the next morning, so we bought some chocolates, Red Bulls and Brownies for our trek. Triund is a small location about 2842m above sea level. The trek was about 9kms in distance. The next day morning we started off for Triund at around 9:30am and each of us had either a backpack or a heavy rucksack carrying out stuff. The terrain was pretty harsh and the climb was quite tough. I did well in spite of my heavy weight and heavy rucksack but the steep climb in the last 300 odd meters drained me of all my stamina and energy. We managed to reach Triund by about 3:30pm. It took us a lot of time to cover the distance but the view was worth it. We could see snow capped peaks all round us. There were patches of snow at Triund and it was freezing cold. Triund has a HP Forest Dept guest house. We took a room there. The only problem was that there is no electricity, water supply or even mobile signals. There are one/two small Tea stalls. They sell food stuff like some bottled water, tea, coffee, bread, eggs, maggie dal-rice and some other bare essentials. We slept under numerous layers of blankets at the wooden rooms provided to us at the guest house. At about 4am we were woken up by some snowfall - it was an excellent experience. Attending to the nature's call was probably most memorable. Find yourself a rock and sit behind it in the open. Watch the snowcapped mountains, and enjoy the snowfall (if you are as lucky as me). We descended the next morning and covered the remaining places at McLeod Ganj.

The trek was an ultimate experience and I hope to have some similar trips in the future as well. I leave u with a few selected snaps from the trek:



















1 comment:

Prateek said...

The higher regions (snow-capped peaks area etc.) look absolutely stunning and other worldly. I'm jealous.