You must have heard a lot about Triund as a popular trekking spot nearDharamshala. Although beautiful, Triund is a crowded place due to its popularity. With people come plastic bottles, empty packets of chips and host of other things which spoil the scene.
What if I suggest you a trekking route near Dharamshala, that is equally or more beautiful and gives you uninterrupted peace of mind? Let's go to Mohinder's hut!
Mohinder's hut is located on a hill exactly opposite to Triund towards east. In fact, you can see a lone beautifully made hut at a distance from Triund. That's the place I'm talking about. At around 2500 meters above sea level, Mohinder's hut is just above 100-150 meters below the altitude of Triund. The hut is largely made of natural material including mud, wood, and stones. Compost toilet just outside the hut adds to the sustainable living experience that the place offers. The place is surrounded by grasslands, trees and hills with no electricity and water connection. You get an unmatched view of the Dhauladhars (including Indrahar Pass) up, andDharamsala/McLeodganj down from the place. Thirsty? Walk for a few hundred meters and fill divine water coming from mountain springs! Tastes good? We even melted snow on fire to have water for chores.
For hunger, burn wood and prepare your own food, which tastes more delicious than anything else in the world after a few hours of strenuous uphill walk. If Mohinder is with you, he can even make soup from naturally growing plants in the nearby forest.
All this experience comes at a hefty price of around 4-5 hours of strenuous uphill walk (5-6 Kms) with about 40 degree elevation.
We spent our new year at Mohinder's hut. We started our trek from Dharamshala Hydro Electric Project at Thathri, which is the last point vehicle can take you to.
Thereafter it was an uphill walk through slate mines, rocky patches, grasslands, and woods. Towards the end, we even saw patches of snow even the hot sun couldn't melt.
There are two phases of the trek. The first one took us to a small power station manned by three people. Two hours into the trek, we reached this point where we were served with piping hot tea, much needed boost of caffeine and carbs. On my way back, I stayed at this power station for a night and was served with hot food, bon-fire, and a couple of blankets. Talk about warm hospitality!
After few minutes here, we continued our way up, through a different landscape of woods and dry grasslands. We waited at a point called eating point and cooked our food on wood. We even heard cries of some wild animals!
The trek is of a moderate difficulty and requires one to be fairly fit to challenge the mountains.
Mohinder is a go-to local guy for anything related to Himachal including tourism, treks, folk songs, camping, and history. He stays in village near Dharamsala and works for an NGO named Nishtha. He is a sustainability freak with interest in sustainable Housing, recycling, and conservation. He has built and owns the buildings from where Ghoomakad operates. For corporate outings and other events at Mohinder's hut, please contact him on +91-98822 26638.
This blog was originally published on '50 by 50'