Saturday, April 12, 2014

Scenic beauty on the way to Badrinath


 Chardham Yatra
                           
1. Introduction to Dev Bhoomi - Uttarakhand
2. Scenic Spots on the Way to Yamnotri
3. Yamnotri - Origin of River Yamuna
4. Scenic spots on way to Gangotri
5. Gangotri - The origin of Holy river GANGA
6. Reverse gear to Dehradun 

7. On the way to Kedarnath  
8. Kedarnath  
9. Scenic beauty on the way to Badrinath  
10. Visit to BADRINATH and village MANA 


Our day started at 5.30 AM , It was deadly cold. We ordered our bed tea and requested for buckets of hot water.

We left the hotel around 7 O’clock and reached Shankaracharya Samadhi Sthal , which is situated at a few minutes away behind the Kedarnath temple.

On the way to Shankaracharya Samadhi Sthal

Adi Shankaracharya was born in 8th century in Kerala. At the age of 05 years , Shankaracharya gained a divine power and at the age of 08 years he started his journey all over India and established  

CHAR DHAM :-
1. Rameshwaram – Tamilnadu (South)
2. Puri – Orissa (East)
3. Dwarka – Gujarat ( West)
4. Badrinath – Uttarakhand ( North)


At the age of 32 , he decided to take Samadhi (merged under the land).

Entrance - Shankaracharya  Samadhi Sthal
Entrance – Shankaracharya Samadhi Sthal

Shankaracharya  Samadhi Sthal
Shankaracharya Samadhi Sthal
Close up - Shankaracharya  Samadhi Sthal
Close up – Shankaracharya Samadhi Sthal

After visiting Samadhi Sthal we went to Kedarnath temple again to seek Shiva’s blessing from outside before taking a leave and clicked few pictures of the temple and proceeded for Gaurikund.


Front gate - Kedarnath Temple
Front gate – Kedarnath Temple

Full view - Kedarnath Temple
Full view – Kedarnath Temple

Kedarnath Temple
Kedarnath Temple

Nandi - Kedarnath Temple
Nandi – Kedarnath Temple

The shining sun brightened up the scenic beauty of Kedarnath temple and its surroundings.

 hats off to such devotees- Bath with chilled water
Hats off to such devotees- Bath with chilled water

Heaven in Earth
Heaven in Earth

On the way back from Kedarnath we had our light breakfast and started our downwards journey. At slow pace we covered 3-4 kms but after sometime my elder daughter started complaining of leg pain , I advised her to use either pony or kandi for rest of the distance but she did not like the idea and continued her journey.

Downward Journey
Downward Journey

While coming back we tried shortcuts in between but it is advisable not to use if kids are with you.As sometimes short cuts are really very risky too. We experienced that downward journey is more painful than climbing up. Around 12 o’clock we reached Rambara (Midway) , we had our traditional lunch , rice & dal and relaxed ourselves for a while and again proceeded further for Gaurikund.

IMG_2335
IMG_2327

shortcuts
shortcuts

People usually take 7 hours while climbing and 4 hours while coming down but we took almost 10 hours going up and 7 hours while coming down because of Kids but hats off to my mother who did not face any problem inspite of being a diabetic as well as BP patient. I think her old village experience helped her a lot. During to and fro my father covered half the distance on his foot and rests half by pony as he is an asthmatic patient.

Hats off  mom
Hats off mom

We reached Gauri Kund around 3.00 PM and waited for our driver , after waiting for half an hour he reached and then we started our journey towards Badrinath.On the way we had our evening tea , enjoyed natural beauty and reached Kalimath bend around 6.00 PM.

Tea Break
Tea Break

Hotel at Kalimath bend
Hotel at Kalimath bend

Just at Kalimath bend we found a hotel and we checked in , rooms were neat and clean and location of the hotel was just perfect as one can see the whole Ukhimath glowing in the night.
Kids were also happy because after 2-3 days they got sufficient open space to play. We also took our bath & relaxed ourselves with tea sitting outside our rooms as there was quite big open space in front side of the hotel in its premises to sit.

play time
play time

We had our dinner around 9.00 PM and immediately went to our rooms and fell asleep as we were damn tired.

Next day we got by 5 AM and around 7 AM we left the hotel without breakfast as we planned to have our breakfast at Mini Switzerland of India (Chopta). 
 
Way to Chopta
Way to Chopta

After traveling for 5 kms we reached Ukhimath . It is situated at 1311 meters above sea level. It can be used as centre place to visit Madhmaheshwar , Tungnath , Deoria Tal etc…..

Ukhimath
Ukhimath

It is said that the wedding of Usha – daughter of Vanasur & Anirudh – grandson of lord Krishana was solemnised here and hence this placed was known as Ushamath and now known as Ukhimath.

During winter for six months Kedarnath ji is worshiped in Ukhimath.

Our first stoppage was after 30 kms at Chopta for breakfast , it is situated at 2600 meters above sea level. It is initiation point of the trek to Tungnath.

Chopta
Chopta

Chopta
Chopta

Chopta
Chopta

Chopta
Chopta

Chopta is known as Mini Switzerland of India because of its natural beauty .When we reached Chopta all were stunned to see its marvellous beauty which we tried to capture in our cameras.Then we had our breakfast and proceeded with the memories of beautiful Chopta for our further journey.

Chopta
Chopta

Chopta
Chopta

Chopta
Chopta

Chopta
Chopta

We reached Gopeshwar which is situated 40 kms away from Chopta. It is famous for its picturesque and some of the ancient temples of lord Shiva , Vaitarni kund.

On the way to Gopeshwar
On the way to Gopeshwar
Gopeshwar Market
Gopeshwar Market

Traveling further for 10 kms we reached Chamoli where another route for Badrinath (via Rudarprayag) meets . It is situated at the bank of river Alaknanda.

Chamoli - where another route for Badrinath (via Rudarprayag) meets
Chamoli – where another route for Badrinath (via Rudarprayag) meets

We continued our journey and reached Pipalkoti , It is situated at a distance of 15 kms from Chamoli . Pipalkothi is one of the developed towns of Uttrakhand where you will find good restaurants to eat and hotels to stay. While going towards Badrinath & coming back we had our lunch at pipalkoti only.

Lunch at Pipalkoti
Lunch at Pipalkoti

After our lunch we proceeded to Joshimath which is quite developed and located at a distance of 35 kms from Pipalkoti.

Pipal Koti to Joshimath
Pipal Koti to Joshimath

It is said that Adi Shankracharya gained enlightened here hence earlier it was known as Jyotimath . Today Adi Shankracharya ashram is known as Joshimath.


Joshimath
Joshimath

Joshimath is famous for Narsingh and durga temple. Tourist have darshan of these temples before visiting Badrinath. During winter Badrinath is worshiped in Joshimath .

Narsingh and durga temple - Joshimath
Narsingh and durga temple – Joshimath

Close up of Entrance gate - Narsingh and durga temple
Close up of Entrance gate – Narsingh and durga  temple

Temple gate - Narsingh and durga temple
Temple gate – Narsingh and durga temple

The famous skiing place Auli is 10-12 kms from Joshimath. Auli is not only famous for skiing but for its natural beauty too.

We reached Joshimath around 3.00 PM and the gate was supposed to be open at 4.00 PM . Road from Joshimath to Badrinath is narrow and dangerous so there is a gate system at Joshimath & Pandukeshwar . Gate system allows only one side of traffic at one one time . we were having sufficient time to visit Narsingh temple.

Long queue due to close of gate at Joshimath
Long queue due to close of gate at Joshimath

By the time we came back and had our tea, gate was opened and we proceeded towards Vishnuprayag .
Near Vishnu Prayag
Near Vishnu Prayag

Vishnuprayag is located 10 kms away from Joshimath where Alaknanda meets Dhauli Ganga. After clicking some pictures of Vishnupryag we continued our Journey and reached Govindghat .

Vishnu Prayag
Vishnu Prayag

Govindghat is 10 kms from Vishnuprayag which is the base for trek to Valley of flower and Haimkund Sahib.

Parking Govind Ghat
Parking Govind Ghat

After that we reached Pandukeshwar which is just 05 kms from Govind Ghat where we found second gate system on the way to Badrinath.

Long queue due to close of gate at Pandukeshwar
Long queue due to close of gate at Pandukeshwar

Some of us came down from tempo traveller and enjoyed the beauty of surroundings. By the time we reached Pandukeshwar it was around 4.30 PM and climate was too pleasant.


Pandukeshwar is said that king Pandu father of five pandavas lived during the last days of his life. 

Narrow road towards Badrinath
Narrow road towards Badrinath

Narrow road towards Badrinath
Narrow road towards Badrinath

Once the gate was opened we continued our journey and reached Hanuman chatti which is located at 10 kms from Pandukeshwar where a small of temple of Hanumanji is located. It is believed that hanumanji meditated lord Badrinath. Badrinath pleased with him and blessed him with unusual powers and strength.

On the way to Badrinath
On the way to Badrinath

Glacier on the way to Badrinath
Glacier on the way to Badrinath

On the way to Badrinath
On the way to Badrinath

Finally we reached Badrinath which is situated at 15 kms from Hanumanchatti. By the time we reached Badrinath it was 5.30 PM and most of the hotels were full.It is really difficult to find a hotel in Badrinath during peak season. Almost of one hour search we got a hotel .

Badrinath Bus Stand
Badrinath Bus Stand

Badrinath
Badrinath

Hotel where we stayed
Hotel where we stayed

We decided that after getting freshen up we will go for darshan the same day only.

Soon coming with Badrinath post…………………………………………..

6 comments :

  1. OMG..literally a virtual journey to Kedarnath.& Badrinath..Thanks for the awesome pics !!!
    Good write up..

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks a lot for your encouraging words !

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  2. Great! I remembered my trip :) Haven't visited Kedarnath though...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Now you have to trek for 24 kms instead of 14 kms after the disaster last year.

      Thanks for going through the post and leaving comments!

      Delete
  3. Lovely pictures, and a good account. I have done Valley of Flowers and Hemkunt Sahib :D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. VOF is in my wish list .....thanks 4 ur comment.

      Delete