28 June, 2021 | Reccy Guide
With the mention of the Himalayas, everyone is filled with awe-inspiring pictures of the mightiest peaks. Be it Everest, Kanchenjunga, or Nanda Devi- scaling such peaks above seven and eight thousand meters is not an easy task. Only seasoned campaigners and skilled experts can conquer such summits.
That being said, the above sentence does not hold true for the entire Himalayas. If you are an amateur or a novice in trekking, the Himalayan trails are not restricted for you. You can still answer the beckoning of nature and travel to the Himalayas to find several peaks, high-altitude valleys, oligotrophic lakes, glaciers, and other natural wonders that are waiting for you!
Thus, we provide you with a fascinating assortment of trails that are ideal for beginners and uninitiated adventure enthusiasts. These treks will not only introduce you to the charms of the great heights but will also train you to become seasoned in the art of high-altitude adventures.
True to the name, the Valley of Flowers Trek is a massive splendor created by colorful stretches of flowers. Located above 3600 meters, this UNESCO World Heritage Site is the transition of the Eastern and Western Himalayas. It also marks the meeting point of the Himalayan and Zanskar trails.
With more than 300 species of flora that bloom in this region, it is the best place to spot several rare and threatened endangered floral species and medicinal plants. The floral composition of the Valley of Flowers changes every few days or every week. It is also a prominent place for birdwatchers. If you are lucky, you might come across several rare species like the Himalayan musk deer, Himalayan mouse hare, Himalayan bear, blue sheep, and hundreds of butterflies.
The moderate-level trek starts from the base camp at Ghangaria. The 3 kilometers uphill trail will lead you to an intersection of an exquisite valley of wildflowers with waterfalls, rocky boulders, springs, etc. This well-defined trail is ideal for beginners and amateurs at trekking.
The Brahmatal Trek is a beautiful trek that is considered a jewel amongst the Himalayan trails for beginners and seasoned trekkers. Apart from the picturesque beauty, it also presents unique challenges to the trekkers like uneven terrain and the 3740 meters height.
The Brahmatal Trek trail is 22 kilometers long. It is nestled amongst the snow-covered peaks of the Garhwal Himalayas, which create a magnificent ambiance and present a distant yet glorious view to every trekker. Starting at Kathgodam, it takes you through oak and fir forests and then across Lohajung. Consequently, you are presented with the beautiful landscapes of sprawling woods, presenting you with the enchanting view of the Garhwal Himalayas.
The trail is also famous for winter trekking and is filled with snow while coming to an end with the frozen lake of Brahamatal overlooking the Garhwal summits.
Sandakphu Trek is one of the most sought-after treks by beginners and amateurs in the Eastern Himalayan region. Being the topmost point of the Singalila range of the Eastern Himalayas, Sandakphu, located at 3694 meters, is considered the ‘Trekkers’ Wonderland.’
The highest trek in West Bengal- this trail takes you across picturesque locations that are untamed till now. From the glimpse of Everest, Lhotse, Kanchenjunga, Makalu, the Three Sisters, and other top summits of Sikkim, Tibet, Nepal, Bhutan in a single stretch of snow to the evergreen forests and a diverse range of flora and fauna- this trek houses it all.
The Sandakphu Trek takes you across a magnificent trail along the India-Nepal border. Your views are interspersed with multiple hues of red, pink, and white painted across the forests of magnolia and rhododendrons during spring and fiery shades of foliage during the fall. Apart from watching the towering peaks reaching the sky, you can indulge in birdwatching or visit the aesthetic Singalila National Park- home to the Red Panda and various bird species.
The Kareri Lake Trek takes you to the shallow, high-altitude freshwater lake named after the nearby Gaddi village of Kareri in the Kangra district of Himachal Pradesh. Fed by the eternal Dhauladhar mountains, this 2934 meter-high lake remains frozen from December to March/April. The outflow is known as Nyund. Since fresh-melting snow keeps feeding the shallow lake, the lake bed is visible, creating an enchanting aura.
Situated very near Dharamshala, the Kareri Lake Trek serves as a picturesque destination where you also get to interact with the Gaddi tribes that reside in their kothis on the other side of the lake. There is also an ancient shrine dedicated to Lord Shiva and Shakti on the hilltop overlooking the lake that you might want to visit.
Apart from being a notable trekking destination in the Dhauladhar range, the Kareri Lake Trek serves as a base for further trekking into Dhauladhar and onward into Chamba and Bharmour regions via the Minkiani Pass (4250 meters) and the Baleni Pass (3710 meters).
The Nag Tibba Trek takes you to Nag Tibba or ‘Serpent’s Peak’ or the ‘Abode of the Snake God’- the highest peak in the lesser Himalayan region of Uttarakhand. The trail takes you to the Garhwal Himalayas, where you find high-altitude meadows or Bugyals.
With an elevation of 3022 meters, the Nag Tibba enables you to have a superb view of the snow-capped Himalayan summits of Gangotri, Kala Nag, Swargarohini, and Kedarkantha peaks. The Nag Tibba Trek is a short one that takes you through a great multitude of landscapes ranging from deodar forests to a small quaint village near Mussoorie. The villagers worship the Snake God and have a beautiful shrine dedicated to him near the summit.
The Nag Tibba Trek will feel a refreshing one for trekking amateurs and beginners and prepare them for more significant challenges that lie next.
With this assortment of five beautiful treks for beginners, you can venture into the Himalayas and soak in the bliss and charm of nature. From the breathtaking views of the mountain tops to tranquil valleys, enticing campsites within sanctuaries to quaint village homestays under the star-lit sky, humming of birds, the smell of rhododendrons- you get it all. For a lifetime worth of experiences, you should start trekking and dive deep into the Himalayan bliss and mystery.