Solo Ride to the Land of Gods- Uttarakhand

Tripoto
8th Sep 2018
Photo of Solo Ride to the Land of Gods- Uttarakhand by Naren Lamba
Day 1

Heading to Uttarkashi from Rishikesh via Chamba

Photo of Rishikesh, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba

Guru Hemkund Sahib Gurudwara- Laxman Jhula Road, Rishikesh

Photo of Rishikesh, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba

After riding across to Ladakh, Spiti and Sachpass, finally thought to ride to the other side of the mighty mountains. This time I zeroed down to ride to the Land of Gods- Uttarakhand. It was an adhoc plan, just made few calls to friends and rider brothers if any one interested could join, however no one turned up and I decided to go ahead Solo. (Best Decision of my life :P) So its, Day 1 - Reached Rishikesh and stayed at Friend's hotel. Well, I think Ranjeet Chabbra , Brother - all thanks to you for the warm hospitality at your hotel and for providing the RE- Himalayan for my Ride.

Day 2

Day 2- Its time to sit behind the bars of the mean machine built to tame the twists, slush, rocks and water-crossing any thing you throw at it. So, the engine of Himalayan roared and off I headed towards Uttarkashi via Chamba road after seeking blessings from Guru Hemkund Sahib Gurudwara around 10:00 AM. The road to Uttarkashi through Tehri and Chamba is going under construction and since it was monsoon season, had to face lot of road blocks due to land slides. So finally it was around 5:00 PM after having lunch at Chamba town and while heading towards Uttarkashi- showers of rains welcomed me to the beautiful town of Garhwal- Uttarkashi.

Bhagirathi River flowing through beautiful Uttarkashi..

Photo of Uttarkashi, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba

Tea Break at Tehri while heading towards Uttarkashi

Photo of Uttarkashi, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba

Rains Welcoming at Uttarkashi :)

Photo of Uttarkashi, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba
Day 3

Day 3: Its beautiful day when you wake up and all you see and hear is the beautiful gushing Holy Bhagirathi River which meets with Holy river Alaknanda at Rudraprayag and finally forms serene Holy river Ganga. I was planning to head towards Nelong valley from Uttarkashi, about which I have heard a lot as on of the treacherous valley with beautiful flora and Fauna. However, to reach Nelong Valley it was mandatory to get inner line permit from DM at Uttarkashi and yes most important - No two wheelers or small cars with lower ground clearance are allowed to enter Nelong Valley. Only SUV's or Big cars with good ground clearance are permitted. So after getting necessary Permits, off I rode to Harshil as I was in a hope to get some Taxi service that can take me to Nelong valley.

Photo of Uttarkashi - Gangotri Road, Taknaur Renge, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba

Beautiful Hamlet "Harshil" where famous movie Ram Teri Ganga Maili was shot

Photo of Uttarkashi - Gangotri Road, Taknaur Renge, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba

View of gushing Holy River Bhagirathi from Hotel Room at Uttarkashi

Photo of Uttarkashi - Gangotri Road, Taknaur Renge, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba

Enroute to Gangnani after crossing Land slide area near Bhatwari village- heading towards Harshil

Photo of Uttarkashi - Gangotri Road, Taknaur Renge, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba
Day 4

Day 4: Its a beautiful day when you wake up at one of the divine place on earth- Gangotri. The sound and sight of the turbulent river Bhagirathi gushing through the rocks is simply mesmerizing. Bhagirathi river is one of the turbulent himalayan river and also one of the two major head streams of holy river Ganga. So after seeking blessings from Divine Gangotri, I headed towards Nelong valley on my Himalayan itself with a hope that I might get allowed to ride to Nelong Valley on Two wheeler itself. However, rule is rule !! So I was stopped by officials at Bhairav-Ghati Check Post-( a junction from where we can head to Nelong Valley). Finally, I parked my bike at the check-post and hitched a pick-up utility vehicle which was heading to Nelong valley. It was one hell of experience- riding in a pick-up truck on one of the most treacherous route which is also well known for endangered wild life species like himalayan blue sheep, musk dear and snow leopard.

Turbulent Holy river Bhagirathi- The word "Bhagirathi" refers to a mythological Sagar Dynasty prince who, to gain the release of his 60,000 great-uncles from the curse of saint Kapila, brought the goddess Ganga in the form of the river Ganges, from the heavens to the earth.

Photo of Nelong valley by Naren Lamba
Photo of Nelong valley by Naren Lamba

Riding through Apple Orchards on the way to Gangani from Harshil

Photo of Nelong valley by Naren Lamba
Photo of Nelong valley by Naren Lamba

Enroute Nelong Valley- Ancient intricate Wooden bridge used for trade between India and Tibet

Photo of Nelong valley by Naren Lamba

The valley, a cold desert like area, looks unlike anything else because of its segregation. Since there had been no external interference, the wild life has thrived- Himalayan blue sheep, snow leopards and musk deer

Photo of Nelong valley by Naren Lamba

Legends in the locality say that- There is a mysterious lake around the mighty peak seen here where Goddess Parvati used to visit and till date no human being has ever returned back from there who have dared to reach there.

Photo of Nelong valley by Naren Lamba

River- Jhaad Ganga flowing from China and this merges with Holy river Bhagirathi at Bhairav Ghati

Photo of Nelong valley by Naren Lamba

Crossing the Pagal Nalaah in Nelong Valley- The Power of Gushing Streams..!!

Photo of Nelong valley by Naren Lamba
Day 5

Day 5: After exploring the mesmerizing Nelong Valley and returning back to Uttarkashi on the same day. Its day 5 and its time to ride towards Joshimath. Its a long day for ride.. covering almost 300 kms in mountains through beautiful towns like Devprayag, Rudraprayag, Chamoli, Karnaprayag. It was tough one - had to face land slides twice on the way. It was almost dark around 8:00 PM when I reached Joshimath crossing land slides prone routes and riding through heavy showers.

Enroute Devprayag- On the way to Joshimath from Uttarkashi via Ghansoli

Photo of Devprayag, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba
Day 6

Day 6: Its time to trek to Auli Top and then head towards Mana village- India's last Village on Indo-Tibet Border. So I started early morning and headed towards Auli Top some 16 kms from Joshimath and boy of boy- the view of Nanda Devi Peak, the mystic clouds engulfing the valley and the artificial lake was just spectacular. After reaching Auli top on Bike, took a rope-way to reach at the top.

Photo of Auli Laga Joshimath, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba

Clouds Engulfing the town

Photo of Auli Laga Joshimath, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba

Artificial Lake at Auli Top

Photo of Auli Laga Joshimath, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba
Photo of Auli Laga Joshimath, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba

Flora of Auli Top

Photo of Auli Laga Joshimath, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba
Photo of Auli Laga Joshimath, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba
Photo of Auli Laga Joshimath, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba
Photo of Auli Laga Joshimath, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba
Photo of Auli Laga Joshimath, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba

Tough Men of Tough Terrains..!!

Photo of Auli Tourism, Joshimath, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba

Day 6: Its almost evening 4:00 PM and I had rode back to Joshimath from the Auli top, Its time to head towards Mana village which is almost 52 kms from Joshimath. But nature had some other plans for me. Almost after riding some 22 kms I was stopped by the police officials after covering some 2 kms from Govindghat as there was heavy land slide and it was constantly drizzling. It was almost 5 PM and there was no chance for road to get clearance. So I had to make an unplanned stay at highway hotel at Govind Ghat. But having said so.. it was indeed worth a stay. As its rightly said "Unplanned experiences are one of most memorable experiences"

Land Slide hit area..!!

Photo of Govindghat, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba

Tributary to Holy Alaknanda River

Photo of Govindghat, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba
Photo of Govindghat, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba
Day 7

Day 7: Its almost around 10:00 AM and route is clear to ride ahead. Its time to ride ahead to India's last village- Mana, a small village located on the banks of holy river Alaknanda flowing from Swargarohini and holy river Saraswati. After reaching around 11 AM at Mana- Village, Did a small trek towards Bheem-pul (Natural Bridge formed due to giant rock) and ahead of that towards Vasudhara Water falls. The same route head towards Swargarohini, however inner line permit is required to head towards Swargarohini from SDM Joshimath. After exploring and soaking the beauty of Mana, I headed to seek blessings of Badrinath and then returned towards Joshimath.

Welcome to Mana- India's Last Village

Photo of Mana Pass Road, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba

Clouds engulfing mighty Neelkanth mountain

Photo of Mana Pass Road, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba

Enroute to Vasudhara Water Falls

Photo of Mana Pass Road, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba

Clouds engulfing mighty Mana Peak

Photo of Mana Pass Road, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba

Turbulent Saraswati River viewed from Bheem-pul

Photo of Mana Pass Road, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba

Confluence of two Holy rivers- Saraswati and Alaknanda at Mana

Photo of Mana Pass Road, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba
Photo of Mana Pass Road, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba

Blessings from Holy Badrinath!!

Photo of Mana Pass Road, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba
Day 8

Day 8: Its time to explore Nanda Devi National Park, one more last Indian village on Indo- Tibet Border- Niti Village. Started almost around 7 AM and headed towards Niti Road from Joshimath. Indeed the route itself is mesmerizing with some beautiful vistas of valley and wild life. On the way to Niti, once again I was stopped by ITBP official and was not allowed to ride ahead from village Malari in absence of permit from SDM Joshimath. However, after meeting the senior official and having healthy conversation, I was allowed to explore the beautiful valley of fragrance in Nanda Devi National Park, Niti Village and was lucky enough to ride till Niti Pass at Indo-Tibet Border at an altitude of almost 16000 ft above sea level. The sight of Dronagiri Parwat (Mountain) - a place well-known in Mythology- wherein Lord Hanuman lifted Sanjeevani Parwat (Mountain) nearby to Dronagiri Parwat (Mountain) was simply breathtaking.

Water crossing en-route to Valley of Fragrance

Photo of Niti Road, Gamshali, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba

Malari Village- Confluence of River Dhauli Ganga and River Girti Ganga- Both are tributaries to Holy river Alaknanda

Photo of Niti Road, Gamshali, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba

Mesmerising Niti- India's Last Village on Indo-Tibet Border

Photo of Niti Road, Gamshali, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba

Farming of Kidney bean crops near Niti Village

Photo of Niti Road, Gamshali, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba

River- Dhauli Ganga flowing towards Village Malari where it merges with River Girti Ganga..!!

Photo of Niti Road, Gamshali, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba
Photo of Niti Road, Gamshali, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba

Mesmerizing and enchanting valley of Fragrance.

Photo of Niti Road, Gamshali, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba
Photo of Niti Road, Gamshali, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba

Indeed a memorable site..!!

Photo of Niti Road, Gamshali, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba

Riding towards Valley of Fragrance from Niti Village

Photo of Niti Road, Gamshali, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba

Mighty Mountain and Moon during bright sunny day

Photo of Niti Road, Gamshali, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba

Enroute Niti Pass!!

Photo of Niti Road, Gamshali, Uttarakhand, India by Naren Lamba
Day 9

Day 9: Its time to ride back to Rishikesh from Joshimath.. One long ride in the mountains before reaching to the base. Started around 09:00 AM and headed towards Rishikesh via Chamoli, Rudraprayag, Srinagar and Devprayag.. riding almost 255 kms and reached around 6:00 PM at Rishikesh.

Day 10

Day 10: After returning back the beast to Ranjeet ji and thanking him for his warm hospitality, it was time to return back to base.. to Ahmedabad by taking flight from Delhi. Although its almost 7 months to this beautiful ride. The memories of the same are still fresh and I look forward to ride again to this divine place having beautiful and warm people, lush green meadows, beautiful Auli, Enchanting Tributaries of Holy river Ganga like Bhagirathi, Alaknanda, Saraswati, Jhaad-Ganga, Girti-Ganga, Dhauli-Ganga and an epic journey towards notified locations near Indo-Tibet Border like Nelong Valley, Mana and Niti Pass. Uttarakhand- Indeed land of Gods with mighty Nanda Devi, Mana Peak, Dronagiri Parwat and Neelkanth Parwat near Badrinath. Last but not the least, I just fell in love with RE- Himalayan BS4, fill it- shut it- forget it- ride it.. Earlier I was skeptical to take this bike due to various articles and blogs mentioning about the quality and reliability issues of BS3 Himalayan. But boy, this machine is killer. Just loved it and I'll be riding the same for my next ride.!! This is Naren signing out.. Ride Hard.. Ride Safe.. !! Cheers!!

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