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A Snow Trek To Himachal With My School Buddies – YHAI | Dalhousie-Kalatop-Khajjiar-Chamba
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This trekking is all about childhood & school friends. Since a long time we wanted to do get together, but every time the plans get to be cancelled. So this time we thought to go on a long trip, so we ended up the discussion and finalised the trip for Himalayan snow trek in December 2018.
This Trek starts from Dalhousie in Himachal Pradesh via Kalatop, Khajjiar (aka Switzerland of India), Mangla to Chamba.
It is the best trek for beginners who wants to do snow trekking.
Day 1: Reporting at Base Camp Dalhousie
Day 2: Acclimatization Day & Explore the Hill Station
Day 3: Trek from Base Camp to Kalatop (8km/5 hr)
Day 4: Trek from Kalatop to Khajjiar aka Switzerland of India (11km/7 hr)
Day 5: Trek from Khajjiar to Mangla & Chamba Exploration. (11km/ 6 hr)
Day 6: Drive back from Mangla to Dalhousie
Day 1 (Reporting at Base Camp Dalhousie)
To reach Dalhousie the nearest Railway Station is Pathankot (Punjab) and the nearest Airport is Kangra (Himachal Pradesh) from there by road you can reach Dalhousie.
We took a cab from Pathankot to Dalhousie and it took nearly 3 hours to reach by evening. As we all got so tired of this long journey from my Hometown I went directly on the bed in our base camp.
People from all parts of India have come there to join trekking with us.
Day 2 (Acclimatization Day & Explore the Hill Station)
The second day in this beautiful Hill station starts with an introduction with each other. There were more than 40 people in our group from all over India. Most people were from Maharashtra and Gujarat.
After breakfast, we all got lined up and got introduced to our trek leader. We were told that before starting any trek acclimatization is very important for our body. As it was damn cold so the body takes some time to adjust with the temperature of that place. So today was the acclimatization day and we have started warm-up trek for 6 km on the road of Dalhousie.
By the afternoon we returned back to our basecamp and after that, we have explored the Dalhousie town & the market.
After dinner, we had a cultural program where everyone should give some performance in the form of dance, music, drama or poetry. The main reason for this program is to get well known with each other and everyone should feel energetic before going to this snow trek.
Apart from travelling, I have a keen interest in music as well, especially of Hip-hop Genre. So I performed small poetry in the form of Rap.
If you want to check out my music, here is the link – https://youtu.be/j4WYIqIty6o
Don’t forget to give me feedback about this song and also check my other tracks.
So let’s get back to Base camp, Gujjus were doing the Garba (a traditional group dance of Gujarat), one boy from Maharashtra performed mimicry. That evening was memorable.
(Base Camp Trek to Kalatop (8km/5 hr)
Everyone was so excited today as this was the first starting day of the trek and moreover, the trek leader told us that today we would be able to get snow on the way.
The trek is from the Base Camp to Kalatop. Kalatop is famous for its sunset in the Chamba valley located in Kalatop Wildlife Sanctuary with a spread of white gold everywhere. Here you find the maximum snow and if you’re lucky then you can get to see the snowfall also.
After trekking 3 km we started getting snow and everyone got busy taking selfies and my photographer friend was taking amazing shots from his DSLR.
You can check my Instagram handle for amazing clicks – www.instagram.com/travelwithayush
By afternoon after trekking 5 km, we have reached to the entry point of the Kalatop wildlife sanctuary.
It was a beautiful sight with snow-covered everywhere. It seemed to be the layer of white gold on the roof of every house which was making the DSLR shot perfect. We played in the snow too much as because the reason we chose this trek was snow and then we had lunch. Now we have to struggle only 3 km for our today’s stay i.e. Kalatop.
By late afternoon we reached Kalatop, the guest house was built on the edge and it was so difficult to reach there as walking on snow was too slippery and on the other side there was a downhill.
Day 4 (Kalatop to Khajjiar – Switzerland of India (11km/7 hr)
I was feeling like to stay one more day at Kalatop because of the feeling, the peace, the view of Dhauladhar range we were getting from there, this I could not able to express in words. So in the morning after having Tomato Soup we left for Khajjiar for which we need to trek 11 km.
Khajjiar a small hill station in Himachal Pradesh also known as the Switzerland of India is famous for its beautiful meadow of the green sheet with a lake and dense deodar forest.
Luckily one of my friend brought those JBL speakers and I was playing the Lucky Ali songs which made full energetic vibe. Then we got one ascend and it was too steep, somehow we managed to cross it. On the Maggi point (rest points are usually known as Maggi point), We met with Pahadi kids also, for them crossing these mountains is not a big deal.
All these places Khajjiar and Kalatop you can also go by road but then you’ll miss the trekking experience.
Day 5 (Khajjiar to Mangla & Chamba Exploration. (11km/ 6 hr)
In the morning after breakfast, we have explored the Khajjiar lake (the place for which it is famous) and took some beautiful shots.
We got very nice hospitality everywhere especially the Khajjiar stay was awesome. We stayed on the top floor which was giving the feeling of Himachal penthouse. If you will ever come to Himachal Pradesh I will recommend you to must visit Khajjiar.
Now we had to trek both on roads and mountains, some times on the way we got roads, some times dense forest. People were singing songs in the group while trekking as we all lost somewhere.
Now we had to go down, as Mangla is on the low altitude. On the way the top view of Chamba and Dhaludhar range we got was breathtaking.
Mangla is a small village near Chamba, there we have reached around 5 pm and this was the last point of our trek. The evening we have spent in Chamba, visited the market and temples.
I’m sure that you have heard the song – “Mai ni Meriye, Chamba Kitni Dur” if not, please listen to this song. This song symbolises the culture, tradition and beauty of Chamba Valley.
Day 6 (Drive back from Mangla to Dalhousie)
The day has come to say goodbye to all the people we met, the team and especially the trek leader. This was the last day and we had to return back to our basecamp by road. We took the HRTC (Himachal Road Transport Corporation) bus for Dalhousie. Travelling in HRTC is also a type of adventure, all around you’ll see the mountains with a river view.
During the Journey, the trek leader was sharing his travelling experiences as he was an ex-army man and after the retirement, he joined here because he loves mountains.
Apart from this blog, I have also created one small VLOG which you should watch how we all completed the trek.
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Any Questions or queries? Ask me in the comment section for a quick response.
So open your bucket list and put the name Chamba in that, experience their way of living, culture and last but not the least the beauty of the Chamba region.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
1. When is the best time to visit Dalhousie for trekking?
Answer: Winter Season is the best season for trekking in Dalhousie.
2. Which are the famous winter treks in Dalhousie?
Answer: Kalatop Snow Trek
Khajjiar to Chamba Trek
3. How can I reach Dalhousie?
Answer: To reach Dalhousie the nearest Railway Station is Pathankot (Punjab) and the nearest Airport is Kangra (Himachal Pradesh) from there by road you can reach Dalhousie.
4. Is it safe to do trekking in Dalhousie?
Answer: Yes, it is totally safe to do trekking and if you are a beginner then this Dalhousie Snow Trek is the best and easiest trek for you to start.