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Old 6th October 2012, 06:46   #16
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Default Re: Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"

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Originally Posted by phamilyman View Post
Lovely job sirjee.

But I would seriously have advised you to visit Kasauli on your way back. It trumped the beauty of VOF with its own multicolored flowers in my visit this saturday. VOF didn't have the same riot of colors, and infact, was quite bland with just a few colors (yellow / light blue etc- the ones u have captured).
If anyone wants to go to VOF to see the riot of colours, the season must be carefully chosen. As far as I know, rainy season (Aug-Sep) is a good time. I visited during early June and there were hardly any flowers. Some pics I took are at https://picasaweb.google.com/1084920...s?noredirect=1

Fauji -- your travelogue is very interesting and your pictures beautiful. Thanks for sharing.

Last edited by debuda : 6th October 2012 at 06:55.
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Old 6th October 2012, 15:12   #17
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Default Re: Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"

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Originally Posted by debuda View Post
If anyone wants to go to VOF to see the riot of colours, the season must be carefully chosen. As far as I know, rainy season (Aug-Sep) is a good time. I visited during early June and there were hardly any flowers. Some pics I took are at https://picasaweb.google.com/1084920...s?noredirect=1

Fauji -- your travelogue is very interesting and your pictures beautiful. Thanks for sharing.
so it is now proven that VOF is epic overrated. I visited VOF last august and was told that june is the best time!!

Fauji sir,
Dare say your photography has vastly improved from all these triplog writing you have been doing
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Old 6th October 2012, 16:28   #18
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Default Gobindghat to Gangaria - Trek along Laxman Ganga

The day long hard journey from Haridwar to Gobind Ghat ensured that we all slept well. The accommodation in Hotel Ganga in Gobind Ghat was basic and clean. Dinesh, our guide from India Hikes had briefed us on the previous day on the trek and expected all of us to be ready by 6.30 AM. Each one of was to carry minimum luggage and the extra luggage was to be sent to Gangaria on the mule.

The team was up and ready at 6.30. The sky was clear and weather was good. It was very chilly in the morning. As we all assembled, the option was to either have breakfast or pack it. Since many of them wanted to have breakfast and then trek, we could leave Gobind ghat only at 7.15 AM. However, we did not eat and packed our breakfast of Alu Parota and pickle.

Gobind Ghat is a transit place for people going towards Ghangaria. During season, this place is abuzz with activity. Majority of the people who transit Gobind Ghat are Sikh Pilgrims who are on the way to Hemkund Sahib. This is an important pilgrimage for Sikhs similar to Char Dham for Hindus. Apart from few hotels catering to tourists, there is a big Gurudwara with lodging facilities as well.

The team finished their breakfast and we were raring to go. We had read about this trek though blogs and travel guides. The distance is long - 14 KMs - and the climb is gradual. It is also steep at many places. We had come well prepared with proper gear and physical training. We went by the checklist provided by India Hikes and tips by Arjun Majumdar, the man behind India Hikes. We started fitness regime quite seriously three months before the trek. Brinda, my wife, had a good personal trainer in the office gym and i went for my run and freehand exercises at home. We bought good trekking shoes from Decathlon and broke it well in advance by walking around in Lalbagh over weekends. We also bought a trekking stick. In the hindsight, all these tremendously helped.

We left Gobind ghat and started walking down towards the Gurudwara. Crossing Gurudwara and the Alaknanda river, our trek actually started when we started climbing. The trail goes all along Laxman Ganga river. The trail is paved by stones. At places it is even. But, at many places it is uneven and broken. Heavy rains during the season ensures that some stones come out and slippery too.

The trail is wide enough and it also acts a mule track as well. Mules are used to send supplies to Ghangaria and to carry tourists who can not trek. This is big hassle as the trekkers have to continuously negotiate the mules and give them way. Another nuisance is the stink generated all along the trail by the mule droppings. Though the sweepers regularly clean the track, they can not remove the stink. Thus, if you are looking forward to a clean and pristine trail to trek, you won't get it. But this is a minor irritant you need to take it in your stride. Fortunately, you don't come across series of stalls as mentioned in many of travel guides. Yes, you do see these stalls near villages but not through out the trek as mentioned by many.

We continue to climb and Gobind ghat looks like a spec in the valley. The scenery around is mind blowing and all the effort seems to be worth it. Tall mountains, huge cliffs, lovely water falls, Devdar and pine forests, milky white streams. clouds dangling low in the valley, snow covered peaks coming out in the sun some times..........these vistas on the way is just made for a soul tired by the grueling climb.

The last four KMs is the most difficult part of the climb. Since this happens after the lunch, it becomes tougher.

Let me take you through the trek pictorially.

The start point.

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0001.jpg

The first picture of the day taken at Gobind ghat. The first rays of the sun caressing the peaks


Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0002.jpg

The team. Brinda, my wife is on extreme left and i am standing next to her. Dinesh, our guide in on extreme right.

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0005.jpg

OMG......Are we going to climb this hill?

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0010.jpg

The Alakananda.......fast and furious


Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0011.jpg

The Gurudwara complex at Gobind Ghat, next to river

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0012.jpg

A group of Nihang Sikh pilgrims getting ready to march to Gangaria on the way to Hemkund Sahib

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0017.jpg

Laxman Ganga - The river which will give us company throughout the trek

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0018.jpg

The light from morning sun brightens up the mountains

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0024.jpg

There is a helicopter service between Gobind Ghat to Gangaria. The flight takes seven minutes whereas the trek is 10 Hours!!

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0032.jpg

The trail - Notice the stones. Not always aligned as in this photograph. Wide enough

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0034.jpg

As we climb, we start seeing fantastic vistas of mountains, forests, water falls.......it is an unending journey of pristine beauty

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0043.jpg

Gobind Ghat looks like a small spec in the valley as we climb

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0047.jpg

We are on cloud nine....virtually with the clouds

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0050.jpg

The first village on the trek - Pulna village set in beautiful surroundings


Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0056.jpg

The water falls at Pulna village

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0060.jpg

The lovely vistas continue.
The scenes on the trek is so beautiful, you don't mind the strain and the stink. Look at the following pictures as well.

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0090.jpgAttachment 996345

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0130.jpg

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The Garhwali women are very hard working. Everyday is a trek fro them. These ladies had collected fodder for cattle and were backpacking it for miles.

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0089.jpg

A short break to dip your tired feet in chill waters

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0121.jpg

The conifers add beauty to the landscape

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0132.jpg

We saw this nice poster. How apt. It captures the spirit!!

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0135.jpg

Beautiful conifers again

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0136.jpg

Laxman Ganga jumps over boulders and flow very fast creating a water fall

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0148.jpg

This part of the trek is toughest coming after lunch as it is a steep climb. But this stretch also has some fantastic landscape. Here the river flows so ferociously over the boulders and the roar is deafening

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0158.jpg

As we inch closer to Gangaria, we see myriad of water falls gushing down the hills.
The helipad at Gangaria. Must rank as one of the most picturesque!

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0491.jpg

As we reach the helipad, we heave a sigh of relief. But there is another KM of arduous trek ahead in slush and stink as we go through the "Pony stand" of Gangaria. We reach a small hotel where we are to stay for next two days.

Gangaria is a small village. It is a one street village which comes to life for four months in a year during the monsoon. It shuts down with first snow of the season. For Sikh Pilgrims. Gangaria is known as Gobind Dham. The place has a Gurudwara with place to stay for Pilgrims. This is the base camp for anyone exploring Valley of flowers and Hemkund Sahib.

As we dumped the luggage in the room, Sohan Singh came up asking whether we needed hot water for bath.

Yes, we reply.

Rs 50 for a bucket of hot water, he replies back.

We take it, there being no option and a hot water bath should sooth the muscles tired of trek!!

Dinesh says that we all meet over dinner to discuss the next days trek to "Valley of Flowers".

We are all excited!!

Getting There

The only way to get to Gangaria is via Gobind Ghat. If you are willing to trek, it is a trek of ten hours to cover 14 KMs. If not possible to trek, you can hire a mule or a porter for the journey.

There is also helicopter services between Gobind Ghat to Gangaria. The flight takes 7 minutes. But flights are unpredictable due to weather condition. One can book tickets in the counter in Gobind Ghat.

Travel Tips

a) Gobind Ghat is a transit place. Don't expect too much with the lodges here. They are basic and clean. The food in the restaurants was good.

b) The trek to Ghangaria is tough though many trekking guides rate it as "Easy". It may be easy for seasoned trekkers but definitely not for newbies. There are some steep climbs which will tire you.

c) If you are not willing to trek, negotiate a mule at the start point. the rates will be cheaper. If you want to get the services in the middle of the trek, it comes with a premium.

d) Carry water bottle with water. Keep sipping water on the way as this is a trek in high altitude. Carry energy bars which will give you instant energy as well.

e) Avoid drinking/ eating anything that is cold in the roadside joints. The quality of snacks is never guaranteed as you may be served leftovers from the previous day. Anything hot - like chai - is always welcome.

f) A good trekking gear is a definite advantage. Don't compromise on this. A good trekking shoe like Forclaz 600 or Forclaz 500 or Woodlands is a big boon. The treads hug the ground and chances of slipping is less. The trekking stick is a must too. It is very helpful and takes the pressure from your knees.

g) Make sure that your feet is not on a slippery ground before moving forward while trekking.

h) The mules are always in a hurry. Give them the way.

i) When you are tired, stop, sip water, look around and enjoy the surroundings and then move on.

j) Everything is expensive in Ghangaria as all items have to come from Gobind Ghat.

k) There is no connectivity to your cell phone in Ghangaria. The only way of communication is through STD from the local phone booths. Phone calls are expensive at the rate of Rs 10 per minute.

l) The hotels in Ghangaria may not be best as there is huge demand for rooms during season due to pilgrims going to Hemkund. It is recommended to carry a couple of thin clean bedsheets.

k) Great India Outdoors and Sarovar group have their tents next to Helipad. They are expensive and needs to be booked well in advance.

m) A minimum level of fitness is desirable. Once you decide to come to the trek of valley of flowers, please get into a fitness regime which prepares you well for the trek so that you can enjoy every moment of it.

n) It recommended to do Gobind Ghat - Ghangaria at least once. One can either go by Helicopter and return by walk or vice-verse.

o) Though no guide required for this trek, it is always advisable to go with one. Dinesh from India Hikes was excellent in helping and guiding people. It is well siganged and there is no scope of getting lost.

p) A good binocular and a camera is a must.

q) Carry all the materials that is required for a high altitude trek. Don't ignore it. Here is a checklist given by India Hikes.

Valley of Flowers Trek - Things to take

r) India Hikes, a young agency specializing in Himalayan Treks are doing a wonderful job in organising and promoting these treks. If you want to know more about them log on to

India Hikes - Your guide to trekking in Himalayas

Next post - Trek to the "Paradise" - "Valley of Flowers"
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Old 6th October 2012, 16:37   #19
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Default Re: Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"

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Originally Posted by debuda View Post
If anyone wants to go to VOF to see the riot of colours, the season must be carefully chosen. As far as I know, rainy season (Aug-Sep) is a good time. I visited during early June and there were hardly any flowers. Some pics I took are at https://picasaweb.google.com/1084920...s?noredirect=1

Fauji -- your travelogue is very interesting and your pictures beautiful. Thanks for sharing.
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Originally Posted by phamilyman View Post
so it is now proven that VOF is epic overrated. I visited VOF last august and was told that june is the best time!!

Fauji sir,
Dare say your photography has vastly improved from all these triplog writing you have been doing
The best time to visit is from Mid July to Mid August when maximum flowers bloom. But different species flower at different times and it is not possible to see all of them. For examples, primulas and Rhododendrons are the first to flower. In fact we could not see them when we were there. Similarly wild sunflowers had dried when we were there. But still there were so many varieties that you will be overawed. It may look like monochrome at some places, but dive deep into it and you will find different flowers. I will post them later in next post.

This does not mean that the place is overrated. It is beautiful beyond words. The landscape, the valley, the river, the tall peaks in pristine beauty. Even if you don't see many flowers like in third week of Sep, it is still a lovely place. I haven't seen anything like that though i had seen quite a bit of Himalayas during my army days. This is something to be seen and experienced.
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Old 6th October 2012, 17:58   #20
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Default Re: Gobindghat to Gangaria - Trek along Laxman Ganga

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Originally Posted by Fauji View Post

As we reach the helipad, we heave a sigh of relief. But there is another KM of arduous trek ahead in slush and stink as we go through the "Pony stand" of Gangaria. We reach a small hotel where we are to stay for next two days.

Next post - Trek to the "Paradise" - "Valley of Flowers"
Once again, interesting narration and lovely pics. Your tips will greatly help those who haven't done such long treks earlier.

I did the Gobindghat - Ghangria - VOF - Hemkund trek in 2009. An account of the same is at http://dmtravels.blogspot.in/2009/06...und-sahib.html

Looking forward to your next post.
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Old 8th October 2012, 16:41   #21
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Default Re: Gobindghat to Gangaria - Trek along Laxman Ganga

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Originally Posted by debuda View Post
Once again, interesting narration and lovely pics. Your tips will greatly help those who haven't done such long treks earlier.

I did the Gobindghat - Ghangria - VOF - Hemkund trek in 2009. An account of the same is at http://dmtravels.blogspot.in/2009/06...und-sahib.html

Looking forward to your next post.
Thanks for your comments, Debuda. I saw your blog and it is nicely written. How true when you write about mule dumpings!! This is the only issue in whole trek. But cant help it.
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Old 12th October 2012, 22:05   #22
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Thumbs up Trek to Valley of Flowers from Gangaria

We went to bed early, as everyone was tired. The hotel we stayed was just opposite Gurudwara. The gurbani started at 4.15, which cut short our sleep. In fact everyone in Gangaria wakes up by 4.30 AM and most of the shops are open by 5.30AM.

The morning was cold and I go down to Deepak restaurant - contracted for food by India Hikes - to check if I can get two cups of tea. The boy in the kitchen is already up and is in the process of preparing tea for the whole team. I ask him to prepare two cups first and then the rest. He obliges and makes a nice masala tea with Ginger.

As we sip tea, Sohan Singh is ready with hot water. Getting ready, we put on the layers of cloth to make sure we beat the cold. The thermals, followed by a pull over and a jacket. This would keep us warm through the trek.

The team is ready at 6.30 and majority want to have a tea and toast before starting the trek. We all head to Deepak and the boys were ready with hot bread toast roasted in tandoor, smeared with butter and hot tea.

It had rained on the previous night and luckily for us the rain gods show some mercy in the morning. It is cloudy but no rain. Dinesh get all of us together and brief about the trek. We were now raring to go to one of most pristine places on the earth – Valley of flowers.

For the first KM, we walk through the single street market of what is known as Gangaria. The either side of the road has eateries and hotels catering to pilgrims. Gangaria gets converted into a large mule stand in the morning during the season. Pilgrims start bargaining with mule owners and negotiate the best price for their journey to Hemkund Sahib. Fortunately, mules are not allowed inside valley of flowers.

The valley covered by cloud and mist as we start

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc03564.jpg

We reach the junction where the trail turns to Valley of flowers. We cross a stream on a make shift bridge; walk on a narrow trail before reaching the entrance gate of Valley of flowers.

The mountains flanking Gangaria village as seen from the junction

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc03568.jpg

Wifey crossing the first stream

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc03566.jpg

Dinesh has already purchased the tickets for the park. Our journey into the “Paradise on the earth” starts. The first one KM is a level trail. The forest is unspoiled and it resembles tropical forests with tall pine and juniper trees, moss covered branches and undergrowth. It is fairly an easy start.

We start the trek - The first KM

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc03569.jpg

Few minutes into the trek, we see the fabulous sight of a deafening stream gushing through the valley.

“Pushpavati River” says Dinesh.

The sight of tall mountains through which the river makes its way humbles us. These mountains are humongously tall. We had never seen anything like this from such a short distance. We walk down the slope to the bridge and cross the river. The milky white waters roaring under the bridge presents a magnificent sight. In the middle is a fallen, huge pine tree, which has been taking the beatings by the water and looks like a massive driftwood.

Pushpavati river gushing from the mountains. Notice the height of these mountains

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Milky white and clear waters. Notice the bridge and trail starting to go uphill

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We now start climbing and the next two KMs is possibly the toughest part of the trek. The trail follows Pushpavati River. We do not see any flowers except for few wild geraniums. Another KM of climbing, we come across level land with mountains at a distance on the other side of the river. The land looks like a white carpet. Dinesh tells us that they are all white flowers. I look into my binoculars and see lovely white flowers spread like a carpet. Dinesh points out to the caves, which are shelters of musk deer on the other side of the river. The crevices of the mountains present a fascinating sight of different varieties of flowers, ferns that I could see only through binoculars. It is a pity that we could not capture them on the lens for lack of hi-end zooms.

This is the tough part of the climb as we climb from the bridge to the valley. Notice the tall mountains and water falls on the flank

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0183.jpg

First view of the valley. Covered in clouds.

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We continue to trek and slowly start seeing flowers of different hues. We find yellows, pinks, blues, whites, purples and myriad varieties. Then there are carpets of yellows, whites, pinks and blues. The valley opens up and we are presented with an outstanding landscape of tall mountains, lovely water falls, snow covered peaks, green fields with flowers thrown in.

The first view of what is store. White flowers. This is on the left side of the trail as we climb and river is on our right

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0203.jpg

The yellow spread of Corydalis. Notice the dried Chremthodiums

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0180.jpg

The spread of white - Anaphalis

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Sprout of Bistorta creating a natural rock garden

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A spread of Pink - Impatiens

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The Gauri Parbat and Hathi Parbat at far end of the valley are covered under cloud. We see part of it when the clouds move out. Suddenly we find the clouds clearing and for few seconds we could see the snow capped mountains clearly. It is a “Wow” feeling and a feeling of being one with the nature.

This is fabulous view of the valley through which we had come through

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0263.jpg

The green carpet with white sprinkling. This is on the right side of the trail.

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0191.jpgFauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0212.jpg

As the clouds cleared, we could see an array of water falls trickling from the mountains

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0234.jpg

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The "WoW" moment when the clouds cleared giving us a glimpse of Gauri Parbat and Hathi Parbat

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-valley.jpg

There are myriad varieties of flowers. It requires a closer look and keen eye to differentiate them. The dominant colours are pink, blues, yellow and white. For an untrained, we identify at least forty varieties!! Some of them have bloomed and withered and others about to bloom. Each specie has a different flowering cycle and maximum flowers can be seen between Mid July to Mid August. In fact, we saw many dried wild sunflowers. Rhododendrons were done too. Still the magic of flowers was still on.

The flowery trail. Notice different varieties of flowers.

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0254001.jpg

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0208.jpg

Now it is all pink of Impatiens or wild balsams

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc03589.jpg

We cross a small stream on a make shift bridge which allows only one person at a time. It is now time for breakfast and we assemble under a huge boulder surrounded by flowers for the breakfast of parata and pickle. Breakfast done and washed with fresh water from the stream, we continue to explore. The valley is huge and it is upto an individual to trek to the best of ability and cover the area. Normally most visitors trek upto the grave of which also gives a chance to see Pushpavati valley at widest. We too trek upto the grave.

The bridge on the stream

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0269.jpg

Panoramic view of the valley with the river in the middle

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Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc_0275.jpg

Grave of Ms Joan Margaret Legge, the British botanist who on expedition to the valley lost her life when she slipped and fell from a cliff

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-grave.jpg

A part of glacier still intact on top of mountain

Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"-dsc03581.jpg

It is now noon and the getting cloudy. Clouds now cover the peaks and it is turning dark. We do not want to get stuck in the rain and keep our fingers crossed. But we also did not want to miss out seeing more flowers. I walk ahead and point out different varieties of flowers. Brinda is busy with her macro lens clicking away at them. It is good fun spotting these flowers. The sheer variety is astounding. One needs at least two days to explore the valley. In fact, the ticket purchased allows three visits to the valley. But you should have the stamina to do that!!

We are now satiated with our experience of the valley and trek back. We look back one last time at the paradise, which is so beautiful that it can only be experienced and cannot be described. Walking down is easy but one has to be careful lest one may slip. The clouds gather on top of us. As we cross the bridge, we experience a drizzle. We continue to walk back to reality as we reach Gangaria. We are back in the mess of human jungle.

We miss the solitude of the valley which so pristine and beautiful. We had virtually forgotten whole world when we were there and be part of nature for six hours. That was the power of nature.

These are few videos we shot during the trek. You will be able to appreciate 360 degree view of the valley through these videos.









Travel Tips

a) The trek to Valley of Flowers to Gangaria is easier than that of Gobind Ghat to Gangaria.
b) Still, it is a long trek of 14 KMs (7 KM one way). At some places it is really steep.
c) Enjoy the aroma, colours and sounds of the valley. Since mules are not allowed, we are saved from the smell of its droppings.
d) Leaving early in the morning, say 6 AM helps and gives one more time to explore.
e) Weather in the valley is unpredictable. We were fortunate to have a clear weather. Many have come back disappointed due to mist, which spoil the party.
f) A good raincoat is a must. If you haven’t one, you can always get a plastic rain cape in Gangaria by paying Rs 10/-, which serves the purpose.
g) A Macro lens and good wide-angle lens is very helpful. We did have a macro lens. But our 18-55 Nikkor was inadequate to cover the landscape.
h) No need for any guide as the trail is clearly marked.
i) For more adventurous, there is a trail through Valley of Flowers to a village called Ghamshali from where you can join back Joshimath.

Next post - Album of flowers from the valley!!

Last edited by Fauji : 12th October 2012 at 22:14.
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Old 13th October 2012, 00:24   #23
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Default Re: Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"

Beautiful pictures there Fauji. Mindblowing locations. It seems I have to keep adding to my 'To do' list after reading travelogues in T-BHP.
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Old 17th October 2012, 10:26   #24
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Default Re: Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"

Dear Fauji,
Excellent narration and photos as always. Today 17th Oct morning I had been travelling from Devarachikkanahalli Road till Devarabisanahalli(Outer Ring Road ) in my black scorpio and had been driving with you till the Intel Flyover. Saw your Great drive....
Regards
Sunil
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Old 17th October 2012, 23:15   #25
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Thumbs up Pictures of flowers in the valley

These are the lovely flowers of "Valley of Flowers". The variety, the colours, the beauty is just awesome.

Please take a look.

Don't worry about their names. even i can't identify all!!
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Old 17th October 2012, 23:25   #26
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Thumbs up Some more flowers.....

The variety and colours are just mind blowing!
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Old 18th October 2012, 08:01   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fauji View Post
The variety and colours are just mind blowing!
Truly mind-blowing variety and colours! And you have captured them on CMOS / CCD very well. Some beautiful macro shots too. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 19th October 2012, 12:36   #28
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Default Re: Some more flowers.....

Quote:
Originally Posted by rameshnanda View Post
Beautiful pictures there Fauji. Mindblowing locations. It seems I have to keep adding to my 'To do' list after reading travelogues in T-BHP.
Thanks Ramesh. You should do this. Plan it ASAP in next season

Quote:
Originally Posted by vs_76 View Post
Dear Fauji,
Excellent narration and photos as always. Today 17th Oct morning I had been travelling from Devarachikkanahalli Road till Devarabisanahalli(Outer Ring Road ) in my black scorpio and had been driving with you till the Intel Flyover. Saw your Great drive....
Regards
Sunil
Thanks Sunil. Yes, i noticed you on the road. Since there was no TBHP sticker, i could not wave at you. Apologies for that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by debuda View Post
Truly mind-blowing variety and colours! And you have captured them on CMOS / CCD very well. Some beautiful macro shots too. Thanks for sharing.
Thanks Debuda. In fact we bought the Macro a week before we packed our bags for the trip. We did not want to miss capturing the beauty.
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Old 19th October 2012, 17:34   #29
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Default Re: Fauji's Drivologues - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand - "Paradise on Earth"

Just one doubt - I thought the whole valley was open till 12km one way (the very end AFAIK). 6-7km would be the main central area that we went too, but we could see alot of flora even further.
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Old 22nd October 2012, 11:46   #30
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Just one doubt - I thought the whole valley was open till 12km one way (the very end AFAIK). 6-7km would be the main central area that we went too, but we could see alot of flora even further.
You are absolutely correct. The valley extend beyond the Grave which is generally last point most visit. It all depends on the stamina and time you have with you. This is the reason why it is always suggested to leave Gangaria very early - as soon as sun rises - which will give enough time to explore. There are people who have gone across the valley and reached Ghamshali village via Rataban Glacier. You need expert guides for this. Take a look at this nice write up in Outlook Traveler.

http://travel.outlookindia.com/article.aspx?282537
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