When we truly experience a moment, time either accelerates or slows us down. We never notice it. We realize it as an after taste that lingers for a long time. Things like happiness, sports, exams, stage, and age run fast. But factors like travel, art, and nature slow down, make us wonder, and wander with music and merriment in our minds.
Brahmatal is one of those hidden gems of the Himalayas that slows you down, opens your mind's eye and makes you notice the beauty of every second.
In this article, I am going to try and bring you that experience through some photographs and stories from the stunning trails of the Brahmatal trek in the winters!
Sunrise from Lohajung
From mundane Mondays to lazy Sundays, we run lives filled with stress and concern. Witnessing the first rays of light at the Lohajung campsite diffuses some of that stress away.
Lohajung is the base camp of the Brahmatal trek. It treats you to one of the finest spreads of the valleys and peaks in the region. The sun rising out of the mountains is a masterpiece in the making. A hot cup of coffee and silence will be your best company here.
Camping in the woods
Brahmatal is one of those delightful treks where you get to camp inside the dense oak and rhododendron forests from the first day itself!
The first campsite puts up a lovely concert in itself for those who know to listen.
I recommend sitting down in silence for a couple of minutes here. Pay attention to the little sounds around you; the whistle of the wind as it blows through the hollows in the trees, the gentle scritch-scratch of the dried leaves on the forest floors and the sounds of crickets and a myriad of other little insects that have made their home in the forests of the Brahmatal trek.
Sitting near the glacial lakes
Although named the Brahmatal Trek, you don't just visit one lake here. The trek is made up of two fascinating glacial lakes, the Bekaltal and the Brahmatal. Sitting down next to them douses your mind, body, and spirit in tranquillity. If you have an unfinished story to be written or an incomplete painting to finish, this is one of those spots that would be perfect to work on them!
Camping on the vast meadows of Brahmatal
From the closed groves of the oak and rhododendron forests on the first day, the campsites on the Brahmatal trail rapidly open up to leisurely spreads of lovely meadows as we progress through the trek. Camping in these vast meadows of the Brahmatal is a larger than life experience, worth every struggle, effort and pain.
Sunset at Brahmatal campsite
The sunset at Brahmatal campsite is a timeless experience. The mélange of colours brings back memories of old songs that I had long forgotten.
This melancholy only gets better post-dinner. The skies are filled with bright, twinkling stars. Laying down and counting the shooting stars have, hands down, become one of my favourite activities to do after dinner on the Brahmatal trek.
View from Brahmatal top
To my absolute delight and fancy, I noticed that the views from the summit of the Brahmatal Trek very closely resemble the famous scene from Lion King: "Everything the light touches is our kingdom."
This is the spot where you can see layer after layer of the mighty Himalayas stacked up one behind the other, extending infinitely into the horizon. Do ensure you ask your trek leader to point out the famous peaks. Trishul 1,2 and Nandaghunti Peak are especially visible from this viewpoint.
If you are looking for a quiet break from the monotony of city life, I highly recommend the 5-day trek to Brahmatal. The trails are easy, the views spell-binding, and there is something new to experience and look forward to every single day.