Popular Treks

Har Ki Dun : River, Mountains & the Magic of Valleys

I have been on this trek twice, in 2011 & 13, and both times during the last week of Dec. This is a 4-day trek, starting from Taluka and ending at the Har ki Dun, witnessing some scenic villages on the way - Seema, Osla, and Gangar. I think Dun in local Uttarakhand (UK) dialect means 'valley' and I suppose for a trek to have something as part of the name is peculiar in UK as if trying to epitomize the experience. For eg., a trek having Kantha (meaning peak) in the name should have an experience of amazing peak climb and views. Valleys are highlights of this trek and the way you move from one valley to another observing the glory of mountain river relationship is amazingly visible...

Har Ki Dun : River, Mountains & the Magic of Valleys

1st day of the trek is not too arduous and you can see the landscapes changing quickly. You start walking along the river, move upwards through the pine forests and pass through mountain villages. I have seen many villages during different treks but till now Gangar & Osla are my favorite. Its just the vibrant people, neatly places huts, beautiful temples, open spaces ( Gangar has a play ground!) which is hard to find in mountain villages...least to say .... the combination is mesmerizing. Some day I would love to dwell more into the socio-economics of a trek and the villages in the mountains but till then, let me move ahead :)

Har Ki Dun : River, Mountains & the Magic of Valleys

2nd day starts with a steep climb up on the other side of the river. This is where one can mostly see some one or the other challenging the way these 'pagdandis' are designed..... "Why can't we keep walking along the river if we have to move in that direction only?" but sadly following the river can mostly be left only to 'Mr. Bear Grills' when you have trails that are devised by years of experience by the local people :) Actually, if one thinks about it, these trails are mostly very well placed to take you to your destination cauz river flow doesn't always remain constant and these trails are well placed in terms of moving from one village to another.

Har Ki Dun : River, Mountains & the Magic of Valleys

Once you climb up some distance, you gradually start sinking in to the magic of valleys. The narrow ridges, strong winds ( making you careful & perhaps a bit nervous ) , and the sound of river flow....together they take most of attention. But it is when you take a breather and look to your right side, the beauty of the valley actually starts capturing your attention. See the pic below for instance...

Har Ki Dun : River, Mountains & the Magic of Valleys

Depending on the time of crossing the valleys, such scenery are plenty... The day can be a bit long and final view of Har ki Dun does not come easy. It takes a good last climb of the day before the first glimpse of your destination is revealed. {This last climb should remind of deep breathing, group work, and motivation to at least some of my fellow trekkers who would read this blog :)} but boy! it is some feeling, when you actually get that glimpse...

Har Ki Dun : River, Mountains & the Magic of Valleys

3rd & 4th days are about coming back and I don't know how but the way back always makes me nostalgic....I mean always! I am not a very emotional person normally but this is different. I become quite to others & talk more to myself and by the time I reach the last day of backward journey, I am almost forcing myself sometimes to even keep up to the group! Gosh! give me a girlfriend who can induce similar feelings :)

Anyways, the good thing is that those who were busy catching breath during the upward journey, can now claim more glory (considering what they just completed!) and witness more attractions from the trek ( with gravity at our side now). With the last camp near Seema, the trek ends at Taluka from where a vehicle takes you back to .......

Ritvij Kumar

A nature lover, "argumentative" person, I work as a Partner at Bikat Adventures and love to explore. Read more

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