Journey to Poon Hill, Nepal

Journey to Poon Hill, Nepal

Travel is my passion; I love adventure and the mountains. On this winter vacation, I chose the Poon Hill Trek. The Himalayas fill Nepal, and Poon Hill Trek is among the most popular trails in Nepal. At 3,210 meters, Poon Hill is the highest point of the trek, which offers excellent views of the Annapurna and Dhaulagiri Mountain Ranges. It was a dream come true for me to finally view these mountains at such a close distance. This trip is an excellent option if you are looking to start trekking around Nepal, and if you are short on time, as it can be easily completed in four or five days. Since this is a popular route, there are lots of hotels and tea houses throughout the route, and you will meet fellow trekkers all along the way. You can complete the trip without a guide, even if you are a foreign tourist. I did the trek in five days with my friend Sanjeev Thapa Magar. Our journey started from Kathmandu, the capital city of Nepal. Day 1: Kathmandu to Pokhara We set off from Kathmandu to Pokhara early in the morning at 8 a.m. to catch a Jagdamba tourist bus. The tourist bus was really luxurious, with an attached European-style washroom. During the trip, we enjoyed good service and hospitality from the bus crew. We were provided hot coffee, cold drinks and a light lunch. The drive mostly follows along the Trishuli Riverside. There were changing landscape views to enjoy from the window. After reaching Pokhara City at 4 p.m., we went to “Hotel Blue Heaven” at the lakeside village and...
Karnali Diaries

Karnali Diaries

It was the month of October.  I was walking alongside the bank of Karnali river with Deepak Sharma, a guy from Nawalparasi and my travel companion, whose first name happened to be same as mine. Apart from the two of us, we were accompanied by porters (who were in turn followed by asses/mules with heavy loads packed in their backs.) We were travelling from Manma of Kalikot to Nanikot V.D.C. Nanikot falls on the Northern part of Kalikot and is a three day’s walk from Manma. Despite the long walking distance and heavy backpack, I was feeling glad. The lifestyle of the local people of Karnali, the clean and fresh environment was compensating my tiredness and making me feel good. On the second day of our journey, we came across a small boy of around 7 years old who was carrying his small brother.  I began conversing with him. After the thorough interaction, I came to know that the boy was going to school which was one and half hour walk up the hill, and it was his daily schedule. He covered this walking distance every day with his brother on his back. I was astonished by the way this boy was taking such a huge responsibility from such a small age. The boy made me compare the differences in lifestyles of this boy and the boys of the same age in the sophisticated cities like Kathmandu. The meeting with the boy made my heart heavy, but we had a huge distance to cover and we didn’t have time to linger. Thus, we moved forward without looking back. After covering a good distance,...
राजधानीदेखि रारासम्म

राजधानीदेखि रारासम्म

काठमाण्डौ विश्वविद्यालयको (Computer Science) तेस्रोवर्ष को स्नातक तहको सेमेस्टर बिदामा हामी २५ जनाको टोलिले यसपाली नेपालको मध्यपश्चिममा अवस्थित राराताल को भ्रमण गर्ने निधो गर्यौ। बसन्त ऋतुको आगमनले होला वातावरणले पनि निकै साथ दिएको महसुस हामीले गरेका थियौ। करीब हप्तादिन भ्रमणको घुम्ने योजनार तालिका तय गरेपछि हामी बैशाख ५ मा राजधानीबाट,मुगुको (हुटु) मा पर्ने राराताल को लागि अगाडी बढ्छौ। कसरी र कहाँ बाट जान सकिन्छ त रारा ताल ? सामान्य जसो राराको लागि नेपालगंज बाट ताल्चा (मुगु) को हवाईयात्रा नै प्रचलित एवं सजिलो मार्ग हो । ताल्चा बाट ३-४ घण्टा को पैदलयात्रापछि तालमा पुगिन्छ। तर हामी स्थल मार्गबाट जाने भएकाले, रिजर्भ गाडी लिएर गएका थियौँ  । पछिल्लो समय हवाईमार्ग भन्दा बढी  बस,बाईक,निजि सवारीबाट हुटू(रारा) पुग्नेको संख्या ह्वात्तै बढेको स्थानिय बाट जानकारी भयो र हामीले देख्यौ पनि । आजकल निजी कम्पनीहरुले पनि रारा भ्रमणको प्याकेज सुरु गरेका रहेछन । जुनबाटो भएर गएपनि निकुन्ज भित्र सवारी निषेध गरिएकोले २-३ घण्टा हिड्नु पर्दोरहेछ, जुन घुमफिरको बेग्लै मज्जा नै हो । ताल सम्बन्धि छोटो जानकारी इतिहास वि. स. २०२० मा स्व. राजा महेन्द्र जुम्ला गएका बेला हिँडेर मुगुको राराताल अवलोकन गर्नुभएको रहेछ । त्यस पछि मात्रै यो तलाउ रास्ट्रिय तथा अन्तरास्ट्रिय रुपमा चिनिन पुगेको रहेछ। त्यसपछि २०३२ सालमा यो क्षेत्र लाई निकुन्ज (रारा रास्ट्रिय निकुन्ज) स्थापना गरि सिमसार क्षेत्र घोषणा गरिएको रहेछ । त्यसताका रारातालको किनार मा छाप्रु र रारा नामक दुइ गाउँलाई नेपालगंज मा पुनर्बास गराइएको कुरा पनि जानकारी भयो । त्यसको करिब तीन वर्ष पछि नेपालीसेनाको दुर्गा भंजन गुल्मले निकुन्जको रेखदेख हालसम्म गर्दै आएको छ । यो ताल राजा महेन्द्रको माध्यमबाट चिनिएकाले कहिँ,कतै महेन्द्र तालको नामले पनि मानिसहरुले चिन्ने रहेछन। तालहरुकी रानी मानिने राराताल मुलुककै ठुलो र गहिरो तालको रुपमा सुपरिचित छ । कलकल र निश्चल पानीले...
Traveler’s Tale: Trip to Kalinchowk, A Heaven on Earth

Traveler’s Tale: Trip to Kalinchowk, A Heaven on Earth

Introduction Located at an altitude of 3842m above the sea level and 150 kilometers away from Kathmandu, Kalinchowk is a quick city escape which lies in Dolakaha district, Kalinchowk VDC. It is about 132 kilometers from Kathmandu to Charikot, 18 km off road up to Kuri Village and an hour hike from there. Kalinchowk, being one of the most visited local destinations in this winter, we also decided to give it a try. This trip to Kalinchowk was our weekend getaway. For people who want to experience snowfall, high altitude, sightseeing and light adventures with less effort, this is the perfect option. In addition to that, it is also famous spiritual or pilgrimage site for Hindus. Day 1 Excited about the trip, we got up early in the morning and took the local bus from Kathmandu to Charikot at 6 am. However, Kalinchowk can also be reached via private vehicles or through Travel and Tour Companies with special packages. As the bus started moving, we slowly left the urban chaos and started to feel the serenity of misty hills, rivers and streams on our way. After four hours drive, the bus stopped at Kharidhunga for lunch. An hour later, we reached Charikot, which is also a beautiful tourist destination. After having some refreshments, we left Charikot at 2:30 pm. We reserved a jeep and headed up from MakaiBaari route. A 6-7 hours hike through the forest trails is another good alternative to reach Kalinkchowk. As we were passing through the lush green pine forest, we saw traces of snow on our way.  The altitude was increasing gradually so was...
Trek to Imja Glacial Lake

Trek to Imja Glacial Lake

After waiting for over a week for the inclement weather to clear up, we couldn’t be patient anymore and decided to take our chances. Our journey towards Imja Glacier (5010 masl) began at 6 am early in the morning from Kathmandu. Crammed in a small jeep, we reached Salleri (the headquarter of Solu district) after 12 hours. Thankfully, the sky had cleared up after a week of incessant rain. After spending a night in Salleri, we kicked-off our journey towards Imja glacial lake at 06:30 am on 8th Sept, 2016. It was a tough walk on the path, mostly used for transporting goods on the backs of mules; the path was muddy due to the recent rainfall and it was difficult to find a good foothold. It took us 5 days to cross Nunthala, Jubhing, Kharikhola, Paiya and Surke – the entrance to Chaurikharka VDC – before we reached Namche Bazar (Namche VDC) to the North. The trek was tough, however, the lush green pine forests, the sweet fragrance of pine, numerous waterfalls, the giggling of Dudhkoshi – made it worthwhile! We witnessed the catastrophic landslides in Surke, which had swept away 3 houses. The locals, though, quickly cleared the trail. We were also fortunate enough to have a close view of Pasang Lhamu Sherpa’s home at Surke – the first ever Nepali woman to climb Mount Everest in 1993. All these villages (mentioned above) have primary to secondary level schools and micro hydropower. WiFi is avaialable in every lodge and hotels, so you are always connected to the outside world. Visitors can recharge their cell phones and camera...
My Solo Annapurna Base Camp Escapade

My Solo Annapurna Base Camp Escapade

How did it start? This October, I did it! I finally checked off the Annapurna Base Camp trek from my wish list. I had for long been planning to take the ABC trek after one of my close friend, had done this trek almost two years back. I booked a solo Annapurna Base Camp Trek, although the cost was a bit more than joining a group, I chose to do a solo trek as my friend told me that trekking solo was more peaceful. The week before traveling to Nepal, I booked the trek with Third Rock Adventures as these guys seemed legit. Getting there The long flight from Seattle to Kathmandu, with multiple transits in between was tedious but once I reached and landed on the Himalayan soil, I immediately felt happy. Phurba, my courteous guide was standing there with a big smile at the arrival hall, he held a placard with my name written on it in big fonts. After a brief drive through a chaotic traffic, we reached the hotel. After visiting their office to get my permits, I came back to the hotel and slept like a log. Adventure begins Early the next morning, I woke up fresh and ready to start my adventure. We took the first flight to Pokhara, the beautiful city had a lake right beside it. We drove for about an hour and a half to reach a place called Nayapul, where the actual trek started. It was almost dark when we reached Ghandruk, I walked through beautiful patches of woods and at times we climbed up above the tree lines....