Chopta-Tungnath Snow Trek
This time, we were ready for fun and adventure, so planned for Chopta-Tungnath Temple trek. Chopta is a small place and having only a few options to stay. So, we had booked Alpine Adventure Camps for two days in advance. Alpine Camps is a good option to stay in Chopta; tent was full deluxe with attached washroom (our package was included breakfast, dinner and evening snacks). We were six people (Vivek, Ekansh, Rohit, Sanjay, Mansi and Khusboo) and ready for the beautiful place. We hired six seaters Xylo car for this trip.
On 2nd April 2015 around 11:50 PM, we left Gurgaon for Chopta. Gurgaon to Chopta is around 475 KM. We took the first break around 3:00 AM for coffee and again moved towards our destination. In the morning for 3rd April around 7:00 AM, we were reached Rishikesh and taken another break for refreshment. We had also taken 2-3 breaks for food and snacks and finally reached Chopta around 4:00 PM.
Our camp was at Duggalbitta; 7 KM before Chopta on Ukhimath-Chopta Road. That area was surrounded by high mountains and that place was very peaceful. That season was booming flowers; the whole valley was full of red, pink and white color flowers which enhanced the beauty of the valley.
After refreshment, we had warm with hot coffee; welcomed by Camps caretaker Ashish. The weather was cold, so we wear our jacket and then walked on the road to enjoy the beautiful evening. We captured a lot of photographs and then returned to camp. After dinner, we gathered in one camp to decide next day plan. We decided to start trek early in the morning; therefore, we slept around 9:30 PM.
Next day in the morning around 6:00 AM on 4th of April 2015, I wake up first and then called Sanjay and Ekansh to wake up and ready for breakfast. Morning view was awesome; we were able to see snow covered peaks from our camps (Last day snow peaks was invisible due to clouds). After breakfast, we went at the starting point of the trek. We were ready for the trek with some basic things like water bottles, raincoat and some snacks.
We started trek around 9:00 AM; there were Rs 150 entry fees per person for Indian. Chopta-Tungnath trek is around 4KM and there was cemented trek till temple, but after 1 KM whole trek was covered with snow. So this easy trek became difficult due to heavy snow. We were not prepared for snow trek and came without proper grip shoes and snow stick. The rain was also started so we got little bit sacred and wore raincoats, but rain was only for 5 minutes. Now the whole valley was covered with cloud and that was the amazing seen. After 1.5 KM, trek became more difficult because of slipping snow due to rain, so Rohit decided to return. We tried to convince him, but he was not ready to go further.
Now we were only five people, only Ekansh and Mansi had the experience of trekking (they previously trekked on Triund) but this trek was more difficult according to them because of completely snow trek. We had required to followed the footprint of other people to successfully complete the trek. After half an hour, we were settled in that environment and started enjoying the beautiful experience of our life.
Every minute enhanced the beauty of trek; we also asked about the difficulty and remaining distance with every person was returning from the trek. But 80% people were not able to complete trek and returned from midway. Some people said that 300-meter trek in the middle is very difficult and risky, so if you cross that point, then you will definitely complete your trek. Finally, we reached on that point; actually, snow was there around two feet (till barrier), so we need to cross carefully. We crossed that point with the help of barrier.
Now the temple was around 1KM, but everyone was tired and excited too. So, we had taken a break for the photo session. Trekking was easy now, so I increased the speed and reached at the temple before 30 minutes of other people in my group. There were only 2-3 groups at the top and they were playing with snow. The half temple was covered in snow and temple was looking stunning and mystical. I was able to see other people in my group from the top, so I shouted by hanging my hand in the air. After a few minutes, they came and then again photo session was started. We were having the great feeling that yes we did it! We were feeling like that we were climbed on the Mount Everest.
We guys were lucky because snowfall was started. We had enjoyed everything in a single trip like camping, the beautiful valley with full of flower, snow trek, snowfall and little rain. That was the wonderful trip and different experience.
After 30-40 minute stay, we decided to go down. Now everything was changed; footprint was missing due to snowfall. We were thinking that going down will be easy in compare to going up, but there was different seen. Snowfall was still continued till 2KM and this was really a superb feeling for us. We also meet Govinda and Manish (they are from my office) in returning; you can call Govinda to mountain boy because every time he plans the trip for mountain only. This was also the third time trek in Tungnath for him.
We were slipped on snow few time, but I think Sanjay and Mansi had the completion of slipping down (I guess they cross 50, but winning award goes to Sanjay). Some people were sliding on the snow, so Ekansh was also decided to slide and he did it. We were motivated by him and then everyone enjoyed the sliding from the approx 10-meter height. We were started trek around 9:00 AM and ended around 4:00 PM. So, we had taken total seven hour time for both sides treks.
After reaching the starting point of the trek, we saw that Govinda was there. He said that he come down by sliding on snow and come down in less than two hours. That why we are calling him mountain boy. We were very hungry, so we had lunch and then returned to camp. In the night, we enjoyed the bonfire and coffee.
Next day on 5th of April in the morning around 8:00 AM, we left the Chopta and taken a break on Haridwar for lunch. We also enjoyed the taste of local sweet “Maal Pua” and then another break after Merut for dinner. In between we passed our time by playing Antachhari Game (this is the game between two groups and first group sings the song then another group starts the song from the last alphabet where the first group ended). We reached Delhi around 11:50 PM then dropped Rohit to Noida, Mansi to Kirti Nagar, and Ekansh to Mahipalpur and then finally reached Gurgaon around 2:00 AM and said thanks driver for the successful trip. This was our lovely experience in Tungnath.