We had left Delhi for a short trip of 3 days to Srinagar in Uttarakhand where Anunay’s father works with the Alaknanda hydro project. We left at about 8:40 at night and our first stop was to be Lansdowne. I had read at a lot of places about Lansdowne and I had wanted to go ever since. We had been in the car for 5-6 hours when we finally reached the areas of Lansdowne. It was around 2 am at night and the clouds slowly started to fill the roads making it impossible to go any further. We stopped at the first hotel we spotted and walked further in search of a place to stay, but everything was shut and our phones had no service to make a call to any of the hotels. With no other choice, we pulled our seats back, connected the aux wire to the laptop, watched an episode of Mr. Robot, ate our tiffin and slept, watching the rain dripping on the car windows.
We woke up at around 7 in the morning and left for the road again. We stopped at the first market that we saw a kilometre or two ahead. The market area belonged to a village called Satpuli which comes on the way to Lansdowne. We ordered tea that was too sweet to finish. Leaving half our tea behind, as we were walking towards the car, we came across a meat shop with a signature. Outside the meat shop was a goat’s head with its paws (maybe as a souvenir!). Anunay took a photograph of the spectacular marketing or creepy strategy and we moved on. As we reached Lansdowne, the mystic clouds touched us again and beautiful forests surrounded us. The mist between the trees all along the route made it just something else. The night spent in the car was worth the view along the road but it soon ended. As we reached Lansdowne just as we were asking for the way to the tourist attractions, we were shooed off by the army men. The whole cantonment area is quiet and pretty but we had a longer way to go.
114 kilometres from Lansdowne, Srinagar with its own little temples, is the last stop before the pilgrimage trek to Kedarnath and Badrinath starts. The place was crowded, naturally. We stayed at hotel Daisy Dee where uncle had been put up by the company. The city at night was something you could plan the trip to this town for. Other than that, the people weren't as nice as you expect in the hills. The town was full of chaat vendors and had a lot of decent restaurants too. The only people we could see were who wanted to trek up to the pilgrim hills or had been put up by development companies to work. There were no visible tourists at that time. If you happen to cross by the place, it is great to stop for a while and enjoy the dam view and if you can-the working of the dam.