The mission was to trek to the glacier called Gaumukh, a tract of 8km by 24km ice-body, the origin of the holiest of holy rivers Ganges or Ganga, highly revered by Hindu believers over millennia. The final destination of the trek had to be Tapovan, a wide-open meadow at the base of the picturesque Shivaling Peak could only be reached if snaking through the boulders and chunk of icebergs that remained on the surface of the glacier followed by a steep thousand feet climb. At the source, the Ganges named after ancient King Bhagirath, read Gangotri Tales to know the Hindu Mythology involved, as River Bhagirathi and confluences with River Alaknanda at Devprayag to become River Ganga that flows from north of India towards east covering a distance of 2480km to the Bay of Bengal.
No, you are not at all welcome. Except for the Malana Village- others miles away from each other- the villages equal to each other represents nothing. Whereas, unlike other villagers, Malana folks do not encourage tourism, forget cordial greetings. Now, its human nature that whenever you are restricted to do something one is more prone to do exactly the same for a latent pleasure. Same happens with Malana too. As there lies no existence of hot-spring, nor even any riverfront, alleys are mean if not filthy that deters all but unwanted guests, Malana was never huge or reputed as a tourist spot on the state map, rather a small unknown society that comprises of few huts and few fine houses that are well, two or three storied without painted walls, temples invalid especially for outsiders. Moreover, one’s future completely depends on the well capable hands of the villagers if he/ she feels abased in the bazaar by inviting ados. The indigenous people of Malana are sensible, their concept of civilization barely matches ours, on a gladsome note they are subjected to different regulations conducted by their bicameral parliamentary body completely segregated from Indian constitution. Now when someone with queer feeling deep inside treks crossing the green semi-oval ‘Way to Malana village’ written iron gate that leads the ascending trail or treks downhill from Chanderkhani or Deotibba passes to Malana, keeps in mind that although its nothing hideous, it shares nothing with other hamlets except the overarching sky.
Want to know where would you find world’s best network with the strongest connectivity ever? Yes! as you are reading this article your guess is absolutely right, it’s in the mountains 🙂 In this head-down era, there is place where people are most concerned about the network signals inside their hearts, of which we are seldom bothered in our busy lives. So, I’m going to take you to a place where people still stand outside the BSNL STD booth maintaining a queue to make a call, as they have mobile phones but no signals; where festival of flowers is celebrated; where they worship the villian Duryodhana of great Indian epic ‘Mahabharata’. AND those people have mastered the art of appreciating the beauty of life very nicely!.
Ever got stuck while pitching a tent ?, Well, I was lucky to have the ‘opportunity’ in Har-ki-Dun trek while passing by Osla Village, the last known human settlement on the way of the trek, in Mori Teshil of Uttarkashi district in the state of Uttarakhand.