Chamoli Garhwal, Uttrakhand - Trekking
Tungnath n' Chandrashilla Summitt
Tungnath n' Chandrashila Summitt is an extremely picturesque trek us to one of the most breathtakingly beautiful part of the Garhwal Himalayas. Tungnath is the highest Shiva temple in the world and is one of the Panch Kedar temples located in the Rudraprayag district, Uttarakhand. The trek runs on a well-defined concrete-bound trail from Chopta to the temple. It is for all kinds of travelers as well especially in summer when the entire region will be filled with rhododendron flowers. So many secrets and mysteries to reveal in this trek. You will find the gorgeous Monal, the state bird of Uttarakahnd also known for its color blend of shinning blue and emeralds. A deep dense forests, vast meadows and panoramic views of the snow clad Himalayas in winter It is the right space to experience peace of mind and even do meditation to rejuvenate yourself by absorbing the pure radiance from the sun coming in between the peaks.
As many trekker has shared their experience about watching the peaks, it is a blessed feeling. Chandrashila Summit trek will also be happening on the same day that is almost near to Tungnath. The highest peak of the Tungnath ranges among the Panch Kedars, the Chandrashila is actually a “Moon Rock”. A picture-perfect destination for nature photography, you can also witness the magical 360 Degree view and the sunset from the Chaukhamba Peak. The summit views including the high mountain peaks in the Himalayas with snow-caps on them are the major highlight of the trek. Just be the believer and then the place offers you many other moments to treasure. While I was on this trekking, I witnessed the view of majestic peaks of Panchchuli, Nanda Devi, Nilkanth and even Kedarnath. In the evening explore the magnificent view of the Himalayas.
“Remember in Mountain, You don't climb mountains without a team, you don't climb mountains without being fit, you don't climb mountains without being prepared and you don't climb mountains without balancing the risks and rewards. And you never climb a mountain on accident - it has to be intentional.” – Mark U.
Day 1: RISHIKESH, UKHIMATH TO CHOPTA
Arrival at Rishikesh by early in the morning than we high vehicle and On the way you can also have the glimpses of the sacred towns like Shivpuri, Byansi, Devprayag, Srinagar, Guptkashi (opposite side), Karanprayag, Rudraprayag and Ukhimath. You can see snow capped Himalayan ranges. Breakfast and lunch is on the way. Arrival at Ukhimath by evening. Its 30 kms drive from Sari Village. Reach your Chopta campsite by late evening for overnight stay. Rest and prepare for next day’s trek. The area is particularly gorgeous after the monsoon. The both sides of track are flanked by bounty of nature in form of grassy slopes, lovely wild flowers, wild rosemary clustered all around and berries strewn at intervals.
Day 2: CHOPTA TO TUNGNATH
Today is a short, yet scenic trek to the holy Tungnath Temple. Early morning we had breakfast and with packed lunches, and proceed our trek towards Tungnath. The trek from Chopta to Tungnath is gradual climb approx 3.5 KM. The trail takes one through lush green meadows and finally joins a pilgrim trail which goes all the way up to the Tungnath temple. The snow filled hills will make you forget every worry and you experience serenity in the snowy white surroundings in winter.A small Ganesha Temple situated on a rocky spur is on the way to tungnath. You can see the entire range of snow capped Himalayas. We trek through the lush and scenic patches of pine, oaks and rhododendron forests. Finally you reach an ancient temple crafted out of solid granite slabs, dedicated to Lord Shiva. However, before reaching the temple you will pass through various eating stall places. Few lodges in the area, but the grasslands below the temple ground offer the big amount of space for camping.
Day 2: TUNGNATH TO CHANDRASHILA SUMMITT
Start the second day of the trek early and try to steps in order to catch the brilliant view of Summit before it gets cloudy. At the end of a steep and arduous climb, the summit will be reached. Chandrashila altitude is 13,415 ft and the only place from where one can get a perfect 360 degree view of the Himalayas and most promising and truly breathtaking. The grass appears and you can trudge along the beaten track on a soft soil while cherishing the picturesque views all around. Enjoy some of the most stunning and panoramic views. As you will reach the peak, you admiring the view of Mandakini and Alaknanda valleys and also see spectacular peaks such as Trishul, Kedar Peak, Kedarnath, Gangotri, Neelkanth, Bandarpoonchh, Nanda Devi, Chaukhamba and many more. After relax one further one kms trek to Chandrasila peak. Later trek back to Chopta for dinner and overnight stay. The downhill journey is relatively less time consuming and smoother. It will take you about 3 hours to climb down to the Chopta campsite.
Day 3: CHOPTA, UKHIMATH, RISHIKESH TO DELHI
Today morning, an exciting drive through the scenic passes and terrains of Chopta will take you back to Rishikesh is scheduled for the day. Breakfast and Lunch is on the way. After journey full of mellow reminisces of the hills, you will be reaching Rishikesh in the evening. Board the bus from Rishikesh, an overnight journey to Delhi will hopefully work out best and Tour ends upon arrival in Delhi.
HOW TO REACH
BY AIR : The nearest airport to Chopta is Jolly Grant in Dehradun. It is situated 226 kms away from Chopta. Flights from Delhi are at regular intervals to Dehradun. One can hire cabs that are easily available for Chopta.
BY TRAIN : The nearest and most convenient railway station is Rishikesh from Chopta. Situated at about 209 kms, Rishikesh railway station is connected to several cities in the country. One can easily access bus or taxi services for Chopta from Rishikesh.
BY ROAD : If you plan to visit the neighboring towns in Uttarakhand, then a road journey would be most convenient. Many buses from nearby towns come to Chopta at regular intervals. One may even hire private taxi or jeep from any of these towns.
WHAT ARE THE RISK INVOLVED ?
Acute Mountain Sickness(AMS): Shortness breath, Mild headache & Tiredness are some common in high altitude trek. Risk of being hit by AMS is considerably low but you are advised to be on a course of Diamox. In case of any medical emergencies, there are easy exit points on this trek, means evacuation will generally not take more than 24 hours.
HOW TO PREPARE FOR TREK
Prepration: Fight again sub-zero temperatures, carry multi layers throughout winter trek and practice carrying packed backpack to comfortable with it. Carrying dry fruits will help on trek since they provide instant energy. The ascent-descent during the trek demands level of fitness. Begin your fitness preparation, jogging 5 Km in 30 minute before One month or two before start the trek, stretching exercises for flexibility are important so you don’t get cramps in trek.
BEST TIME FOR TREK
The best time to travel to Tungnath is in the summers during "April to June" and Best time in Winters is "October to December". Winter treks are also conducted in tungnath and the best months to trek are between "January to March" but chandrashilla Summit closed for 2 months because of heavy snow.