The Roopkund Trek Gets You Up Close And Personal With The Enchanting Uttarakhand
Mountains have always been an enigma with their strength and resilience. The Himalayas have been a strong contender for the title of most enigmatic and awe-inspiring mountain ranges with the pristine snowcapped peaks, highest peak (Mt. Everest) and stories that set the mood for a camp bonfire. Not to worry, these stories and landscapes are not simply restricted to your imagination or anecdotes pieced together from friends and acquaintances. You can now plan a Roopkund trek which also gives you a chance to explore Uttarakhand at its finest.
Journeying to the Mysterious Lake
Every mystery has a little history behind it! The Roopkund lake is located at the Chamoli District near the base of two peaks – Trisul (7120 mt) and Nanda Ghunti (6310 mt) and offers a breathtaking view of the Himalayas.
Situated at an altitude of 5029 mts, this 2 mt shallow lake is referred to as the Mysterious Lake due to the 9th-century skeletons of humans and horses that are visible at the base of the lake. There are other attractions like deep virgin forests, brooks and camping sites that are scintillating nearby. The Lord of Adventure has never been more generous to travelers.
The trek’s starting point is Lohajang Pass which is well connected and can be travelled by motorcycles. Bedni Bugyal is the ultimate destination of this trek, following which the trek to the base camp starts. However, what a Roopkund Trek Guide will never be able to highlight is the absolute peace you will feel once you complete the journey and take in the lake and surrounding mountain peaks. Ah, that feeling of being at one with the universe and finding oneself again. See it to believe it!
Trekking in Roopkund
Put on your brave heart shoes because the Roopkund Trekking Route is not an easy one. In fact, this 8-day trek is sometimes a task for an avid trekker as well. This means that you should ideally be in the best of health, fit and bereft of any medical ailments. The Roopkund trek requires traversing through rough terrain for 8 days.
The starting point of the trek is reaching the gorgeous Lohajang Pass. This is done by taking a bus or car from Kathgodam. Taking Lord Curzon, you’ll travel from Lohajang to the Bedni River via the Lohajang Pass. Then, trekkers move to Ali Bugyal from Didna village and you can admire the scenic beauty of the Garhwal range alongside. The fourth day trek will see you reach Ghora Lotani from Ali Bugyal. Make sure that you try and spot a Himalayan magpie while travelling on this stretch.
Ghora Lotani to Bhagwabasa via Kalu Vinayak is what you will be covering on your fifth day. From here, the zigzagging trail starts and the altitude too becomes steeper while the weather gets icy. In short, the actual trek begins! The 6th day is when you reach Roopkund Lake which is amazing to say the least! You will then move to Bedni Bugyal. Enjoy the scenic view of the snowcapped peaks of Trisul and Nanda Ghunti along with basking in the magnificence of the Garhwal Himalayas.
You start your return journey on the seventh day from Bedni Bugyal and pass through rhododendrons and stunning vistas along with the Neel Ganga to reach the hamlet of Wan. Camping in Wan is a thrill unto itself. The journey is completed on the eighth day as you reach Lohajang.
Travel Tips That Will Come in Handy
- Carry warm clothes, raincoats and waterproof bags. The weather here is unpredictable. You also need to take protective gear, camping items and toiletries, first aid kits and medication (if any). Be well prepared.
- Since you need to carry sizable loads, your stamina and endurance is of utmost importance. You will be covering roughly 8 kilometres each day so staying fit is very important. If you suffer from medical conditions like asthma and diabetes or spine injuries, you should not attempt the trek.
- Carry your refreshments and snacks in a separate pouch. There are fewer rest stops and you should stay hydrated.
- Do not consume alcohol during or before the trek.
- Oxygen is thinner once the altitude gets higher so you should take your time and be careful.
What Else Can You Explore in the Region?
There are many other places to see and things to do in Roopkund and Uttarakhand in general. Firstly, the time you choose to go on the trek matters as the season affects what you can see and places you can access. For first timers, it is best that you avoid the months of May and June as the place is covered in snow and not much can be seen.
The ideal time to visit is between September and October when you can view the lovely green meadows and the famous skeletons of course beneath the Mysterious Lake. Since Bedni Bugyal falls in your trek route, make sure you check out Bednikund and the quaint hamlet of Wan. Uttarakhand is known to be not only a pilgrimage site but also a hub for adventure sports like bungee jumping, river rafting and skiing to name a few. You can visit historic places like Nainital or Lansdowne later on if you’re in the mood to extend your trip by a few days.
Tick off Your Bucket List With a Roopkund Trek
This trek is definitely one for the bucket list! Apart from being challenging, this gets you up close with the majestic Garhwal Himalayas and landscapes that are too stunning to describe in words. They say that trekking through the mountains is food for the soul and training for the body. Who knows, you might just look at yourself and the world in a different light when you’re out there amidst the mighty mountains.