DAY 7 : PATHAR NACHAUNI TO LOHAJUNG VIA BEDNI BUGYAL AND WAN
TREK : 18 KMS
ALTITUDE : 12,818 FT TO 7,662 FT
And so..there we were..Getting into our trekking shoes for one last time. The final day of the trek lay ahead of us, and the feeling was a mixed bag of excitement and emotions I would say.
It was going to be a long day of close to 10 hrs to return back from where we started on the first day. It was a gradual descend of almost 18 kms through a range of terrains. The trek started through the same route that we took whilemoving towards Roopkund; the only difference was that tis time the direction was opposite. Passing through Ghora Lautani, we made our way into the lush green meadows of Bedni Bugyal.
It was all downwards from here. And how abrupt was the change in the scenery..The grassland soon made way to a line of trees, and slowly the group ventured into a dense forest area called Gharoli Patal. The soft whistle of the leaves, bird tweeting and the cool wind past the ears were the un-forgetful pleasures, that we would hardly experience in the chaotic lives we were about to get back into.
The descend was steep and quite tricky. At many points, we were literaly walking on rocks. It was really challenging to keep the balance. Just a step here or there, and the result could have been quite painful!! ” Ascending is much more easier than the descent”, somebody murmured from behind. How right he was….
We continued our journey till reaching the banks of the river of Neel Ganga, the noise of which we started hearing some time back itself. It was time for the much needed lunch break. We dipped our aching foot in the cool water, which at least for me, was nothing less than a luxury Spa session in the woods.
Although not wanting to leave the place, we slowly paced towards Wan village – back to civilization. Through the narrow paths of the village we encountered smiling faces of children respectfully nodding their heads to say “Namaste”, which brought a smile to everyone’s face. Wan feels like very much at home, a big village with hills, mountains and smiling faces. As we walked a bit further, we finally came across the vehicles waiting to pick us up. All aboard the vehicle, we zipped over to Lohajung base camp, via the tiny Kuling village, where all we were asking for was a bucket of warm water to soothen up the tiring muscles..
At the dinner table, we all sat together rejoicing our expectations of the trek and the experience that we were taking back with us, which will be cherished forever. Its one thing to visit a popular hill station or tourist destination and completely different in experiencing nature so close that every day surprises you.
Roopkund was not just a trek, it was a way of experiencing one’s inner self. One of the most special 7 days of my life. The ardous walks, the puffing lungs, the cramped legs, the aching backs, the most scenic vistas, the sense of accomplishment, the friends made…
Can life be ever lived any better???