Kinnaur, Himachal (Part II - Pandava's fort at Moorang - Serene Nako - Checkpoint Sumdo)

Tripoto
16th Jun 2016

Read the part I (Land of Apples - Kinnaur) of the series here

Nako is the highest village of the Hangrang Valley and has an amazing feel about it. Centre of attraction as mentioned in the guide books is the lake which tourists come searching for but are most dissatisfied after seeing it. The village is far more beautiful along with the surroundings. It is a package!!! Stay here for a day or two, relax, bask in the sun, get into a chit-chat with locals and try to understand how they have managed to create a healthy lifestyle for themselves. It also has a rock with imprints of the legendary Guru Padmasambhava. Generally, Nako is full of tourists with tourists and tempos, bikers and few backpackers. New concrete and tin structures were being constructed to expand the infrastructure for tourists. Still, Nako with its beautiful wood, limes, soil and stones made houses have a strong traditional feel to it. Nako monastery is among the oldest monasteries in the trans-Himalayan region. A nearby waterfall provides water to the farms, lake, and the village. Bus stand is a good viewpoint to enjoy the surroundings. We stayed at Amar's home stay, one of the oldest home stays in Nako.

During our two days stay, we had Shakshuka at the Doctor SHAKSHUKA Cafe. It is the most visited café by foreigners. The owner tend to be less hospitable towards Indian tourists if there are too many orders from foreigners. We hiked on the Tashigong trail to a point from where the Nako village has a panoramic view. I will recommend that anyone on a long journey in this region should stay over in Nako for a day or two to recharge their batteries, enjoy the peace and calmness of this village and travel further. Overall, we had excellent two days in Nako with a promise to come back again to trek down to the Tashigong monastery and beyond.

Day 6

Destination 4 - Moorang Fort/Village: After two days of exploration at Kalpa-Chini, we were off to the Moorang fort. We boarded the bus from Reckong Peo bus stand at 10 am and stopped at Kharo bridge for a break. By 11.30 am, we reached Moorang and hiked up to the fort. We were advised by the bus driver to be back on NH by 1.30pm to catch the bus for Nako. Moorang fort is approx 40 km from Kalpa and is situated just off the NH 22 on the left bank of river Sutlej. Moorang is associated with the Dwapar Yuga, especially with the Mahabharata. Considered to be built by Pandavas during their year of exile. It is strategically located on a hill, which is surrounded by mountains from three sides and, by river Sutlej. It’s a steep climb up to the fort, which has a square structure, made up of wood and stone and is a cluster of tall and small buildings. It does not have the fortifications which are normal features of a typical fort. The intricately carved entrance doors are quite small in size, a feature of the trans-Himalaya region. After spending an hour, we hurried towards the NH to catch the bus to Nako Village-our home for next two days!

Part of Moorang fort!

Photo of Moorang, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar
Photo of Moorang, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar

The wooden ladder

Photo of Moorang, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar

View of river Sutlej from the Moorang fort

Photo of Moorang, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar

My lovely backpack!

Photo of Moorang, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar

Admiring the view from Moorang fort

Photo of Moorang, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar
Photo of Moorang, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar

Kharo Brige between Peo and Moorang

Photo of Moorang, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar

River Sutlej & Moorang Bridge!

Photo of Moorang, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar

Destination 5 - Nako Village: We traveled towards Upper Kinnaur further deep into the mountains to Moorang. Moorang is located in the Middle Kinnaur and Nako is in Upper Kinnaur. The drive beyond Moorang is fascinating as the somewhat green landscape gives way to the yellow rocky moonland beauty. We passed through Pooh and than Khab. Khab is the confluence point (sangam) of Spiti and Sutlej rivers. Beyond Khab, the landscape begins to drastcially change and give way to the cold and arid desert landscape of trans-Himalaya. The drive is breathtaking and a treat to experience as we entered into the Hangrang valley. The bus finally arrived at Nako bus stop by 5.30pm. This bus stop about a KM walk from the village and is on the NH 22. A local Thakur Kangri Dhaba who started his life in Nako as a day labourer has set up this food-joint and doing a brisk business and offers yammy parathas and chai.

view from Nako vilage

Photo of Nako, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar
Photo of Nako, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar

Chuling Village - if I correctly remember. It looks like an Oasis!

Photo of Nako, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar
Photo of Nako, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar

Spiti river valley on the way to Nako village

Photo of Nako, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar
Photo of Nako, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar
Day 7

View of the Nako Village from the Nako Monastery

Photo of Nako, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar

A farmer in her field at Nako

Photo of Nako, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar

At the Nako Bus stand

Photo of Nako, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar

The snake roads are common features in this part of the Himalayas

Photo of Nako, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar

The Thakur Kangri Dhaba at the Nako bus stand run by a Thakur sahb from Kangra district

Photo of Nako, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar

Nako Village view

Photo of Nako, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar
Photo of Nako, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar
Photo of Nako, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar

The remains of the Old Gompa

Photo of Nako, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar

The forgotten lanes of the Nako

Photo of Nako, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar

One of the houses in the Nako village

Photo of Nako, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar

Nako Monastery (New One)

Photo of Nako, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar

Trail to the Tangshang monastery!

Photo of Nako, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar
Photo of Nako, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar

A walk on the Nako Mountains

Photo of Nako, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar

A click from Nako

Photo of Nako, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar

Nako view from the Top!

Photo of Nako, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar
Photo of Nako, Himachal Pradesh, India by Vineet Kumar
Day 8

Nako to Sumdo: On third day morning, we had breakfast at the bus stop and after a wait of four hours, we got into a military truck. The bus came later but overtook us at Chango and by the time, we reached Sumdo, the bus had already left for Tabo :(.

Sumdo is the entry-point to Lahaul-Spiti. All the foreigners have to get the inner line permit to travel further into the Spiti valley or while exiting from the Spiti valley. A road from Sumdo goes to the border-point of Kaurik. While scoping out our options, we had delicious samosas at GERF canteen and were again lucky to get the lift from a family up to Tabo. During this whole journey, Spiti River was a constant companion. Roads are not so good but these are difficult to maintain due to the nature of the mountain here.

For the third and last part of this series, Read here:

Spiti valley - Part III - Tabo – Kaza – Key – Kibber – Komic – Kaza – Losar – Kunzum Pass – Rohtang Pass – Manali – Delhi

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Awesome post!
Tue 11 08 16, 23:15 · Reply · Report