The Valley of Milk – Doodhpathri, Kashmir

Tripoto
16th May 2016
Photo of The Valley of Milk – Doodhpathri, Kashmir 1/12 by Bee The Musafir
Presence of white boulders and a river flowing down the valley gives the place its name “Doodhpathri”.

Some 42 km southwest of Srinagar, you reach a place which has endless meadows, a thick sheet of alpine forest covering the mountains, snow-clad peaks, and white boulders occupying the banks of a river running down the valley giving the place its name “Doodhpathri” – the valley of milk!

Photo of The Valley of Milk – Doodhpathri, Kashmir 2/12 by Bee The Musafir
Doodhpathri is one-and-half hour drive from Srinagar. Click here to enlarge.

One can start for Doodhpathri after breakfast at around 9 am. Within two hours you reach the meadows of Doodhpathri. This beautiful place is often skipped by tourists flocking to Kashmir. The views from road are ultra-romantic. The lush and tall alpine tree line makes the horizon.

Photo of The Valley of Milk – Doodhpathri, Kashmir 3/12 by Bee The Musafir
A scenic view of the road leading to Doodhpathri. Cows lazing around add life to the landscape of the place.

At Doodhpathri, you are 9000 feet above mean sea level. The Pir Pinjal range looks as elegantly beautiful as it is throughout its length and breadth. Clouds kiss the mountains every now and then. That the place is less frequented by tourists, in fact, is a boon. A “crowded Doodhpathri” will lose its charm.

As the meadows start, I saw newly-constructed rest-houses. I enquired and they told me that they will be thrown open for tourists so that tourists can spend a night in the cottages.

Photo of The Valley of Milk – Doodhpathri, Kashmir 4/12 by Bee The Musafir
The premises of cottage. In the backdrop a silver lining coming down the valley is Doodhpathri.
Photo of The Valley of Milk – Doodhpathri, Kashmir 5/12 by Bee The Musafir
Set in a completely fascinating surrounding, the newly-built cottage is well designed and well equipped.

It was a ‘peaceful’ Sunday out in the city. A lot of locals had come to Doodhpathri for an outing.

Legends of famous Kashmiri mystic Nund Rishi aka Sheikh ul-Alam, regarded as patron saint of Kashmiris, are associated with the place. The dark green forest of pine, fir, and deodar trees pump fresh air in the atmosphere.

Photo of The Valley of Milk – Doodhpathri, Kashmir 6/12 by Bee The Musafir
Pony ride is available. The white boulders are peculiarity of this place.

If you start at 9 am, you will be in Doodhpathri by 11 am. You can spend four to five hours at Doodhpathri and head back to the town by 4 pm. There are a couple of eateries at Doodhpathri and on the way after Budgam.

The beauty of Mother Nature will keep you stick to Doodhpathri and fall in love with the place. There is ample of scope for photography. Remember to keep your cellphone/camera full charged before you head here.

Photo of The Valley of Milk – Doodhpathri, Kashmir 7/12 by Bee The Musafir
कभी महक की तरह हम गुलों से उड़ते हैं, कभी धुएं की तरह पर्वतों से उड़ते हैं...; ये दुनिया हमें उड़ने से खाक रोकेंगी, हम परों से नहीं हौसलों से उड़ते हैं... --राहत इन्दोरी

IN THE MEADOWS:

Doodhpathri has endless meadows. A clear sky makes it more beautiful. For an off-beat wanderlust like me, it was solace to see that the meadows were not crowded. Locals told me that there has been rampant deforestation. Hope the authorities takes note of this.

Photo of The Valley of Milk – Doodhpathri, Kashmir 8/12 by Bee The Musafir
मैं हूँ एक खानाबदोश सारा जग मेरा वतन...

These meadows reminded me of the melodious song by Lata Mangeshkar for the 1991-movie “Heena”. Click here to watch the song. Legendary film actor-director Raj Kapoor had shot a number films in the valley. The unceasing unrest has deterred filmmakers from capturing beauty at these scenic sights.

THE TRIBES OF KASHMIR:

Kashmir has tribes. The Gujjars and Bakkarwals, the pastoral nomads, live on the mountains. They are goatherds and shepherds. During summers they stay in the mountains. They migrate to plains during winters in search of pasture for their livestock. They keep moving seasonally. They are seen at the meadows with a large herd of sheep. While the men command the herd, the women look after children and venture out in search for vegetables/herbs and firewood.

Photo of The Valley of Milk – Doodhpathri, Kashmir 9/12 by Bee The Musafir
Sheep busy grazing in the meadows.
Photo of The Valley of Milk – Doodhpathri, Kashmir 10/12 by Bee The Musafir
A narrow stream with pure water flowing down the meadows.
Photo of The Valley of Milk – Doodhpathri, Kashmir 11/12 by Bee The Musafir
A cute little girl gave allowed me to take a picture after much persuasion and a Cadbury chocolate :)
Photo of The Valley of Milk – Doodhpathri, Kashmir 12/12 by Bee The Musafir
The women from tribe were collecting vegetable/herbs in the meadows.

I started for Srinagar at 4 pm to reach my accommodation by 6 pm. Doodhpathri, unquestionably, was enticing and alluring!

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