I have always wanted to travel a lot, especially to the mountains. However, travelling needs money, and if you start a job for that money, it occupies most of your time which leaves you unsatisfied with your hunger for travel. Hence, I decided no matter what I would try for a trip to the mountains or places I really want to go. Exactly what I did in the March of 2017 while I was working from my hometown Lucknow.
I was doing the early morning shift this time around when one of my friend Shivendra pestered me to travel to Nainital. I was reluctant to visit Nainital as I had been there a couple of times already. I refused to the place, not to the travel which left me in charge of finding an alternative destination. I couldn't have taken many leaves, hence I had to find a place with an internet connection and yet an escape from the heat of northern summer. Scouring the google maps, I stopped on the land of Panchchuli. Munisyari being in the laps of Panchchuli range gives you the best views of all the five Panchchuli peaks. With the destination, final and bike serviced we both were all set for this journey.
On the Friday 9th March we started at 4 pm from my house in the evening as I was working 6 am to 3 pm. The first wasn't that interesting as we had to drive mostly within Uttar Pradesh and quite honestly it is not a pleasure to drive in summers of Uttar Pradesh. We made it to a place called Puranpur lying on the border of Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand near the Pilibhit Tiger Reserve and luxuriated ourselves with Dhaba food.
Started the next day's ride early in the morning and we were soon entering the Pilibhit Tiger Reserve. My pillion rider Shivendra has a great phobia of wild animals cause of which he didn't let me stop much while riding through the forest for pictures.
We were planning to stretch till Munsiyari today, however, this turned out to be a long day. Too many roadblocks between Champawat to Pithoragarh delayed our journey which led to an inevitable stop at Thal, Uttarakhand falling 70kms before from Munsiyari. The locals told us about the route ahead being full with sharp and blind turns with possibilities of Tiger sightings on the way.
Finally, after a whole of driving through meadows, forests, dusty terrains we reached Thal and all we could after that long journey was eat and sleep.
The next morning was beautiful and we were excited to visit the Birthi Waterfall which would fall 33 kms before Munsiyari. The whole route was quite scenic from Thal full of twists, turns and blind turns and we could feel that comforting cold in the wind breezing on our faces.
We took our sweet time reaching Munsiyari as we were spellbound by the views on the way. This was even more special for Shivendra as it was the first time he was gazing at these magnanimous snow clad peaks. After reaching, we found ourselves a considerably cozy yet cheap hotel to stay in for the evening. Before shutting off the day, we decided to take a stroll around the city and know more about the place. Mostly because we wanted to try the local wine we so heard of along the way to Munsiyari. Unfortunately, we did not find anyone who would provide the stuff to two complete strangers. In search of the poison we found divinity that goes by the name of Nanda Devi Temple.
Next day we did the Khaliya Peak Trek which takes you through the beautiful forest trail full of birds and flowers. It was all pink and music out there in those woods. The trek eventually takes you the superb view of Panchchuli peaks.
Came back from the Khaliya top, reached back to the hotel, packed our stuff and we were ready to ride again. The next stop was Kausani which is famous for its scenic splendour and its spectacular 300 km-wide panoramic views of Himalayan peaks like Trisul, Nanda Devi and Panchchuli. However, it was doubtful that we'd see those peaks because of the mist during this time of the year. None the less we were able to reach there in about 6 hours travelling through the bustling city of Bagheshwar. Took the night off there with the famous honey tea of Kausani.
Woke up at 6 in the morning for it was time for my morning shift. The first part of the day went by, working while gazing at the beautiful views from the terrace and listening to the songs of birds where the background score was the wind over leaves of tall mountain trees filling the entire valley.
As the clock struck 3 pm, the laptop was in the bag again and I on the roads. The next stop was Nanital, yes we decided not to go there, however, the road to home was still nowhere near and the total remaining driving time was a few hours as light usually fades away earlier in mountain areas. We took a stop in Almora to eat the famous local sweet dish 'Balmithai'. If you're ever in Almora, do try the sweet from Khim Singh Mohan Singh's Shop on the Mall Road. Everybody around here knows the address to this shop so finding it wouldn't be a problem for sure. Because if this stop we reached Nainital after 11 pm if I remember correctly.
We went to the same hotel where I stayed almost seven years ago when I visited Nainital for the first time. The owner of the place recognized us after we gave our full description and how we stayed with them seven years ago. We filled her and her son in with our stories of travel and they kept on sharing stories of other travelers who stayed in their hotel. We lost track of time talking to each other admiring the dreamy lake view from the hotel's balcony.
Finally bidding goodnight, we slept at around 2 am in the morning only to wake up, work and drive the next day again. The first half of the 6th day was the same routine from 6 am to 3 pm. Started riding towards the hometown Lucknow on the 6th day we decided to take a night's stop at one of Shivendra's cousin brother in Shahjahanpur and would leave the next day to our home. That's how my journey to Musiyari concluded without taking leaves or quitting my job to travel to the extent of it.
Looking forward to more such adventurous trips in the future. Follow me on Instagram and Facebook to collaborate for travel plans. Would be more than happy to join in with new travel buddies.
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