Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Destination locked : Valley of Flowers

Where are you going in the second half of this year ? I have targeted Valley of Flowers. Ever since I have been almost 20 kms within that place, I wanted to go there. It will be almost impossible after I move out from Delhi. So I had decided to give it a try this year. Of course if God almighty agrees! Weather plays an important part in the trip. If rain continues beyond July, then it will be all over. Because it involves 20 kms of trekking up the hill each way.

One good thing about this trek is that it is rated as soft trek, making it possible for almost everyone to climb. The trek starts at Govindghat, some 20 km from Joshimath, at an altitude of 1828 mtr. Day one involves trek upto Ghangria at 3048 mtr. Day 2 involves further trek upto the Valley of Flowers at 3700 mtr (average). One has to trek 5 km one way from Ghangria base camp to Valley of Flowers and back by evening. Night halt at Valley of Flowers are not allowed to maintain its unique ecosystems. Thus it involves trekking from about 6000 feet to about 12000 feet. It is a challenge. But it will be unique – once in a lifetime experience.

Interseted! Try exploring the GMVN (Garhwal Mandal Vikas Nigam) website. Uttaranchal is divided basically into two regions – Garhwal and Kumaon. The sites like Badrinath, Hemkund Shahib, Valley of Flowers, Kedarnath, Gangotri and Yamunotri fals in the Garhwal region. The site like Nainital, Kausani, Binsar, etc. falls in Kumaon region Both GMVN and KMVN (Kumaon Mandal Vikas Nigam) have excellent websites. Further they also run chain of hotels in these places. More importantly they are government agencies.

I will finalize the trip by getting into touch with some travel agencies in Dehradun. For traveling in the hills, it is always safer to hire a car from local people with local driver, rather from Delhi. One do not require prior hotel booking at Joshimath or Badrinath. But I am not sure about Ghangria, the base camp for trip to Valley of Flowers. As of now, I am assuming that as hundreds of people go there everyday, specially for going to the Sikh holy shrine of Hemkund Sahib, there certainly will be some arrangements for staying. Probably one can get accommodation there without any kind of prior booking. I am looking at options offered by GMVN, UFDC (Uttaranchal Forest Development Corporation) which have good network of Forest Rest Houses, and local tour operators at Dehradun. All these three will be cheaper than booking through some agencies in Delhi.


Adroit said...

hey..jus hppnd to visit ur blog..excellent information btw...

excellent plans to visit nanda devi..
ve been to hemkund sahib before..so can provide u some info abt it...

indicaspecies said...


I've planned a trip to VoF and Hemkund in August this year and while browsing the net, I reached your site. You have a nice blog.:)