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Little known Chanshal


Little known Chanshal ( The Buran Ghati Trek )

The Buran Ghati Trek (9 Days)

Trek Type: Easy to moderate

Chanshal, a little known range in Himalayas, lies above and beyond less travelled Pabbar valley of upper Shimla. Chanshal range standing as a natural barrier between tribal region of Kinnaur to its north, Garhwal Himalayas to its east and Pabbar valley to its south is dotted with high passes that have been used throughout centuries by the trans-migratory shepherds herding their flocks over to greener pastures. One such crossing is the Buran Pass (4725 mts) which separates the Pabbar from Sangla valley in Kinnaur. In the old days, English travelers during British rule often preferred this cooler route to Kinnaur to the arduous travel through the hot Sutlej valley. Used mainly by the shepherds of the area, this route provides a challenging yet extremely beautiful trek from remote village in Pabbar valley into equally charming Sangla valley. This trip provides a gainful insight into untouched, pristine beauty of Chanshal mountains, rarely seen jewels of Chandranahan Lake (4220 mts) with other glacial ponds surrounding it and culturally rich melting pot of the meeting of Buddhist and Hindu population of this region.


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Day 1

Arrival in Shimla (2200 mts), transfer to Hotel. If time permits, take a walk on Ridge and famous Mall Road. Illuminated historic buildings of Christ Church & Town Hall look fascinating in the evenings. O/n Hotel.

Day 2. Drive to Rohru (1550 mts), 6 hours

This drive takes you through region of Shimla renowned for its Apple produce. Soujurn at Kharapathar (2673 mts) to have first glimpse of Chanshal mountains and Pabbar valley down below.

Visit palace of erstwhile princely state of Jubbal, which is marvelous mixture of ethnic and Gothic styles of Architecture. The modern wing of palace exhibits an exquisite blending of Indo and European styles. A part of the palace is built in Chinese style with suspended attics and structures carved out of deodar timber. The interiors are furnished with Persian carpets, amazing accessories, beautifully carved furniture and ancient artifacts.

Visit Hatkoti temple - beautiful two storied pagoda (Nagara style) structure believed to have been built by the Pandavas. Constructed around 800-100 AD, the temple was renovated by the Jubbal rulers in the 19th century. The most revered temple by the locals is dedicated to Goddess Durga, locally known as 'Hateshwari'.

Reach Rohru by late afternoon and check in Hotel. Rohru situated on the bank of Pabbar River serves as the base for the trek. O/n Hotel.

Day 3. Drive to Tangnu (2700 mts), 30 Kms, 2 hours and trek to Janglik (2850 mts), 5 Kms, 2 hours

Leave after Breakfast and drive to Tangnu through Chirgaon and Dhamwari villages. The drive goes up along gurgling waters of Pabbar River with rapidly changing views as the altitude is gained. Beautiful house, fields and pretty villages give way to forests around Tangnu. Tangnu is just a clearing in dark green expanse of forest. Steep descent to cross the bridge on Pabbar is followed by even sharper ascent on the other side. Reach Janglik, last village in Pabbar valley situated on a steep slope with orchards and fields covering the entire vicinity of it. A short walk above the village takes us to a small flat ground ideal for the camping. O/n Camp.

Day 4. Janglik to Dyara (3100 mts), 8 Kms, 5 hours

Path climbs above village to reach birch fringed pastures, high up on right bank of Pabbar. Views open up, across Pabbar towards snowy tops giving way to pastures and rich forests. The beauty of the valley above Janglik is comparable to any of the better known alpine valleys of the Himalayas. Long stretches of the flower scented meadows, greens of the pastures and the forests contrast with blue of the sky above and in between glisten the white of ice and snow on the mountain tops, interspersed with the brown and grey of the rocks cast the magical spell on the visitor. Camp in the grand open meadows of Dyara to savour every moment of its beauty. O/n Camp.

Day 5. Dyara to Litham (3600 mts), 10 Kms, 5 hours

Spend time in the morning exploring the Dyara pastures. Early morning walk on the meadows with first streaks of sunlight is an experience to relish for lifetime. Today’s walk takes you through ups and downs of these highlands with stream crossings couple of times. Litham is the last pasture close to head of Pabbar valley. There are quite a few rivulets flowing down through Litham. On the left, snout of Chandranahan waterfall is visible beyond which lies the Chandranahan Lake. O/n camp at Litham meadows.

Day 6. Litham to Chandranahan Lake (4220 mts) and back to Litham, 8 Kms, 6 hours

Across the pasture, Walk up the stream coming down from the left. The trail dips towards this stream, called Chandranahan stream. It takes about two hours to reach the glacial ponds of Chandranahan Lake, traditionally regarded as source of Pabbar and held very sacred. There are about six more small lakes or snow tarns in the surrounding of Chandranahan Lake. The landscape here presents very impressive panorama. Return to the grassy meadows of Litham Thatch by evening. O/n Camp at Litham.

DAY 7. Litham to Burua Kanda (3550 mts) over Buran Pass (4725 mts), 21 Kms, 8 hours

The trek of three days till now has been easy and helped to acclimatize. Today’s trail is steep till the Buran pass and can be little strenuous but highly rewarding at the same time. Start a bit early for a long day. Beyond the Chandranahan stream is the first tributary of Pabbar coming down. Up this stream is Buran pass also called Burando. Buran is the easiest route from Pabbar to Baspa valley. The summit of Buran opens a magnificent view of Kinner Kailash range, towering across Baspa valley and slopes of virgin Buran Ghati running down below Buran pass. A long day’s walk is best ended by camping just above tree line, edging the pastures Burua and Shong. O/n Camp at Burua Kanda.

Day 8. Burua Kanda to Sangla (2650 mts), 14 Kms, 6 hours

Through the dense forest of fir and birch giving way to handsome deodar and pine as one loses altitude. Take right at shong village followed by an easy walk to reach road head near Sangla. Drive to reach Sangla by late afternoon. O/n Camp.

DAY 9. Drive to Shimla (2200 mts), 295 Kms, 11 hours

Early departure after breakfast. Drive upstream Baspa till Chitkul (3450 mts), the last inhabited village before Indo-Tibetan border. Visitor is enthralled at the beauty of this upper valley surrounded by forested slopes, views of the high mountains, saffron fields and apple orchards. Major attraction at Chitkul are its houses with either slate or wooden plank roofs, Kamru temple dedicated to Goddess Kamakshi, the idol of Goddess was brought from Guwahati (Assam), a Buddhist temple and a small tower. Leave for Shimla, en route visit Royal Palace of erstwhile Bushahar state at Rampur (1350 mts), sojourn at Narkanda (2621 mts) for evening tea. Reach Shimla by late evening. O/n Hotel.

Day 10

Board the Volvo bus or hire the cab for onward/ return journey.