On a beautiful morning, all-encompassing views of the Himalayas—from Nanda Devi to the five snow-topped peaks of Panchachuli—spreads out above Kasar Devi, a village close to Almora in Uttarakhand. A solitary street keeps running along the highest point of the edge, with few homes spotting the inclines on either side. I first went to Kasar Hills while working on a travel project; I stayed in the mystical village for a month. I never expected such mind-boggling stories from a small Kumaoni village.
This area which is also known as the Cranks Ridge has been a hub of art, poetry, mysticism, and hippie subculture. The mystical history of the village still attracts many backpackers to the area, you may witness many homestays, general stores, cafes, and bakeries to cater to the needs of these backpackers.
This small village in the Kumaon region of Uttarakhand has been a place for the legends and knowns. Bob Dylan, Swami Vivekananda, Timothy Leary, Jawahar Lal Nehru, and many more, high intellect and mystical personalities have spent time in this part of the Almora district.
A group of hippies made this place popular in the 1960s, one of them was a famous psychologist Timothy Leary from Harvard University who said that this place has radiation that encompasses the earth (called the Van Allen Belt) endow certain spots, just same as Machu Picchu in Peru and Stonehenge in England with exceptional cosmic energy, he trusted Kasar Devi was one such spot.
Swami Vivekananda has also mentioned about meditating at this place in 1890 in his diary.
Whenever I got time from work, I used to walk down to the streets of Kasar, each time I have met a person who is living or visiting this place for a reason which might not seem very usual from a city man's point of view.
I had a good fortune of meeting Mr. Rahul Godara originally from Punjab who has been spending summers at Kasar hills for the last 4 years, owns a Yoga and Spiritual Tour Company. Mr. Rahul has spent a lot of time in London, studying, working as a Broadway actor and later shifted to Kasar hills. His in-depth knowledge about Hindu Culture and Mythologies made me spent most of my time in the village with him.
I had met another amazing personality during my stay in the mystic village, Mr. Shishir Vikas Jain, an entreprenuer, writer, and philosopher who spends most of his time researching in Kasar. This 34-year-old young man has changed the way I think, surpassing all societal norms, he is doing things his way, inspiring people and bringing change in people lives.
Some places have such a strong effect on you that it changes a part of you from within. Kasar is one of those places which pushes you to think beyond. This place has such a strong vibration that you can't stop yourself from thinking about life from a different perspective. From strong aura to the picturesque views, from delicious food to cooperative locals, Kasar has triggered something extraordinary which is yet to be explored even by myself.
You know that is the thing about traveling, it helps you in moving on. Not only from people and places but from one state of mind to another, to the higher one.