This blog includes two treks which one can do independently on weekends however we friends decided to do both, one after the other. We did this trek from 16 November 2016 to 21 November 2016.
Brief about Kheerganga …
Kheerganga is a serene meadow in the Parvati Valley situated at 2960 m where Shiva is said to have meditated for 3000 years. The hot springs at Kheerganga are believed to possess sacred healing properties. It takes about 4–5 hours trekking to reach Kheerganga Top which is approx. 12 km from the starting point near Barshaini, 17 km away from Kasol en route the pilgrimage site Manikaran.
About the trek…
Day 1: 16-17 November 2016
We two started our journey from Chandigarh, took a Volvo at 8:40 PM to reach Bhuntar. Next day we reached Bhuntar early in the morning and waited for our two friends who were coming from Delhi. We had a cup of tea and from Bhuntar we took a bus to Barsheni village. On reaching Barsheni we thought of going to Kalga which is nearby Barsheni village. From the bridge, we took a turn and trekked a little up and reached Kalga village. However, there are 2 more routes to Kheerganga. These are used quite often by trekkers.
- Trek from Nakthun village.
- Trek from Tosh Village.
We got a homestay at Kalga village. The place is beautiful, surrounded by apple orchards and forests. We ended our day at Kalga to start fresh for Kheerganga trek the next day.
Day 2: 18 November 2016
We started our trek at 7:00 AM as we wanted to do a day hike to Kheerganga and come back the same day. We found deodar trees, water streams en route.
We continued our way up and ascent slowly got steep and moderately difficult. Around midway of the trek, we found a huge waterfall coming from the mountain. The waterfall is popularly known as Rudra Nag (The Sacred Snake of Lord Shiva). The water is crystal clear. There is also a small eating point on the right side of the fall. The trekking trail becomes a little difficult after the waterfall. There is a continuous climb after this point and multiple water streams greet you at short intervals.
We kept ourselves hydrated throughout the trek which helped us a lot during ascents. The path is picturesque and the forest gets denser and scenic. We couldn’t stop ourselves appreciating nature’s beauty. The uphill climb is fatiguing but you will find rocks to sit on and relax. Moreover, you get acclimatized to the conditions once you get going. Another interesting aspect of Kheerganga trek is the water streams flow all throughout the trek.
We met fellow travelers and while catching up our breath we asked how much more is left. To our surprise, they told us that all your pains will be lost the moment you will enter the sacred pool thus charging us up again to continue our trek. Finally, we reached Kheerganga by 12:10 PM. There we found a cluster of huts and small cafes near the temple and natural hot water spring. The temple and hot water spring pool are located on top of all the huts and campsites. We took off our clothes and had a fresh hot water dip. All our pains and joint fatigue vanished in a moments time. That feeling cannot be described in words !!!
After spending about 2 hours at Kheerganga we started our descent. We reached Kalga by 5:15 and spent our day thinking that if we could have stayed there more. Soothing and healing your mind & soul and putting your senses together that’s what Kheerganga is all about.
Day 3: 19 November 2016
Early morning we left for Barsheni. We then took a bus to Mandi from Barsheni. After reaching Mandi bus stand we took a bus to Dharamshala. From Dharamshala, we took a cab and reached our next trek destination, Mcleodganj. The beautiful Beas river can be seen flowing along the road. Picturesque continue to surprise you. The Pandoh Dam built on Beas river also comes en route. We stayed at a hotel at Mcleodganj costing Rs. 500 per room. Next day we started our trek to Triund.
Brief about Triund…
Triund is the crown jewel of Dharamshala, situated in the laps of Dhauladhar mountains at an altitude of 2850 meters, has the perfect view of the Dhauladhar mountains on one side and Kangra valley on the other. The trek takes you through a beautiful mixed forest of oak, deodar, and rhododendron. The Trek is fairly easy for the first 5 kilometers but the last 1 kilometer may require a bit of toil, the last 1 kilometer has tiring curves before you finally reach Triund hill. Along the way, there are many small tea and snack shops where one can refresh during the trek. The trek is panoramic and when you reach Triund the view of Dhauladhar mountains is just awe-inspiring. From Triund one can trek towards Illaka glacier too which is at a height of 3500 meters. The trek is of about 6 km and usually takes around 6 hours.
Day 4: 20 November 2016
For Triund trek, we hired a cab to Gallu Devi temple as there is road route available till Galludevi temple. One can start the trek from the Mcleodganj via Dharamkot also. The cab costed us Rs. 400. The trek from Gallu Devi involves walk over steep curves and moderate trails. There were many rocks on the trail thus a good pair of shoes with good traction will be of great help. It takes about 4 to 5 hours to reach Triund Hilltop. On our way to Triund, we came across two refreshment shops, first one named Magic View Cafe, the oldest Chai Shop and Best View Cafe. We relaxed there a bit and had some Maggi, bread omlete etc and kept ourselves hydrated thought the trek.
We had also booked the forest department rest house at Triund earlier so stay was not an issue at Triund. The room costed me Rs. 500. The trail is well marked and beyond the woods lies the rockscape in the entire route. Finally, we reached the Triund top. It was quite sunny out there.
The panoramic view of the Himalayan ranges casted magic on us. The 360-degree panoramic view of the mountains appeared to be rushing towards us from all the directions. The mountains are very close at triund and the view of majestic mountains is just jaw-dropping.
We took some pictures and went uphill to get a view of Triund from Illaka glacier side. There was no electricity up there so we were given candles in our rest house and people used torches for their tents. We had rajma rice, egg bhurji for the dinner which was very delicious maybe the hunger made us feel like that.
Day 5: 21 November 2016
After spending the night at Triund top I got up early morning to witness the mesmerizing sunrise from the triund hill. I felt so lucky to view such a spectacular sunrise. After spending some time on the hill we started our descent. It hardly took us 2 and half hours to come back down to Mcleodganj. We reached back, packed our bags and we were all ready to go back home.
We then calculated our per head expenditure and to our surprise, it came out very less than expected just Rs. 4500 per head which included dining out at Mcleodganj, Bus tickets, cab costs, food, water, homestay at Kalga, hotel charges at Mcleodganj etc. We then boarded the bus to Chandigarh. We had a number of beautiful photographs to take back as unforgettable memories and to cherish in future. Truly we had an amazing experience at Kheerganga & Triund !!!
Some key takeaways …
- Always start trekking early in the day maybe 6 am or maximum 7 am.
- Wear comfortable clothes and shoes don’t carry heavy jackets instead get one from Quechua. I bought one which is just 150 gms in weight and is warm as hell.
- Always carry a water bottle with some electrolytes such as Enerzal it will keep boosting up your stamina.
- Carry some fruits and food along.
- There is no electricity up there.
- Food and water will be available on the top.
- Try to book the Forest department guest house will just cost Rs. 500 and two people can stay in a room very comfortably.
- Best time to visit: March-May and September-December.
- Don’t carry heavy bags you won’t require them.