Valley of Flowers trip was pending since 2013:
-- 2013, there was devastation (आपदा) in Uttarakhand, due to heavy rains. We had our Bangalore - Delhi flight tickets booked but had to cancel it as there was no way to go beyond Delhi.
-- 2014, I again attempted but Valley was closed as one of bridge connecting Valley to Ghangria was not yet open.
---- We went up to Delhi but had to change our plan to: Dalhousie - Dharamshala - Manali
---- Manali to Rohtang-pass & the glaciers there was again an impressive stretch.
-- 2015, finally things were falling in like & I could make this trip & what a trip it was, simply "amazing".
-- Glad that Dnyanesh decided to join me for this Valley-of-Flowers Trek. He is the best "company" that one can have. Always smiling, always happy & biggest thing is always cracking "practical" jokes.
---- About 6 weeks early, we started preparation for the trek.
---- Dnyanesh made a nice check-list of items to carry, like: diff kind of clothing, back-pack, food, medicine.
---- He also did a lot of googling & studied feedback from earlier travelers + instructions provided by diff tour operators.
---- We were keeping a tab on the weather as well & praying that both Sun & Rain god blesses our trip.
---- To verify our stamina, we did a trek to Nandi Hill on one Saturday evening. Nandi Hill is our own hill-station, for Bengalurians. We went to the base, parked our car there & started climbing the hill on foot. It took is 2+ hrs to cover 8 KM. I actually did 3 such attempts on 3 subsequent week-ends.
***Honestly, this 8 KM distance + the elevation of about 550 meters, proved to be very amateur compared to what was in store for us.
|Day-2||Haridwar||Govindghat||295 KM||By Road||1,828||5,997|
|Day-3||Govindghat||Ghangaria||13 KM||1st Trek||3,049||10,003|
|Day-4||Ghangaria||Valley of Flowers & back to Ghangaria||6 KM||2nd Trek||3,352 to 3,658||10,995 to 12,000|
|Day-5||Ghangaria||Valley of Flowers & back to Ghangaria||12 KM||3rd Trek||3,352 to 3,658||10,995 to 12,000|
|Day-6||Ghangaria||Hemkund Saheb & back to Ghangaria||12 KM||4th Trek||4,633.00||15,200|
|Day-7||Ghangaria||Govindghat & to Badrinath & back to Govindghat||13 KM + 74 KM||5th Trek + By Road||1,828||5,997|
|Day-8||Govindghat||Haridwar + evening at Haridwar||295 KM||By Road||250||819|
|Day-9||Haridwar||Full day at Haridwar||--||--||--||--|
|Uttarakhand Govt Map for "Char-Dham-Yatra"|
Airline rescheduled my Bangalore - Delhi flight & made it leave 45 min early. Had to start 4 AM from home. The road was clear. Taxi took 15 min to reach Hebbal (11 KM) & 25 form Hebbal to Airport (31 KM).
As soon as I got out of the Airplane at Delhi, even though the temp was told to be 29 C, I started sweating. It was very humid outside.
Was surprised to see the Airport Metro service operational. There is a shuttle bus form Terminal 1 of Delhi Airport to the nearest Airport Metro Station. Its an AC bus it they charge रु 30/-. Every 10 - 15 min there is a bus.
Our Train to Haridwar was at 3:30 PM. We took the Airport Metro up to New Delhi Railway Station & kept our luggage at the Cloak Room. Spent 3 hrs roaming at Connaught Place (CP) & came back to Railway Station. We had one more group with trek back-packs in our train compartment. Upon inquiring got to know that they were from Thane & were also heading for Valley-of-Flowers like us.