This is a series of my two weeks of tryst with the Garhwal Himalayas:
Day 1&2 : Secunderabad to Delhi
Day 3: Delhi to Haridwar bus ride
Day 3: Meerut Road
Day 3: Har Ki pauri- Haridwar
Day 4: Impressions from Haridwar
Day 4: Through Rajaji national Park
Day 4: Devaprayag-Srinagar-Rudraprayag-Karnaprayag
Day 5: Pipalkoti-Joshimath-Badrinath
Day 6: Mana: The last Indian village
Day 6: Adventure in Badrinath-Govindghat Road
Day 7: The Boys from Rishikesh
Day 7: Trek to Ghangaria
25th September, '08:
After a gut wrenching walk of 14 kms and reaching dizzying height of 9147 feet, (more so with a ruined knee), I felt at ease. Ghangaria turned out to be a hamlet more developed than I had imagined.
Multitude of ponies in Ghangaria to carry piligrims
But since it was the fag end of the season, the inhabitants were less. Within a week, the whole village would be moving to the base below to Joshimath.
couldn't imagine the greenery and civilization dissapear into 8 feet snow from next month.
The same rooms spike to 1500 Rs during summers. I couldn't get warm water here. So settled to freshen up without a bath. Soon it was dusk, and I walked (limped. I had aggravated my knee seriously) around this small village and clicked a lot of pictures.
Ghangaria is a busy base for all Pilgrims to Hemkund sahib and visitors to Valley of Flowers. And reasonably so, there were all sorts of basic facilities available for such tourists. The village should be having not more than 20 houses including little shops.
Soon it was dark and settled in my room snuggling into my damp blanket. The electricity is a problem at this god forsaken place. They dont have it after 7 pm. It was the first time since I set out of home alone, did pangs of home sickness struck me.
I felt lonely. I wasn't able to imagine that I was so far away from my family
in this dark, lonely and frigid place, 9000 ft above somewhere amidst mountains. I started writing my feelings to assuage my nerves.