A spine-chilling trek to a laid-back village lost in time

Before I could fall into deep sleep, the bus conductor woke me up. The sun was obscured by gray clouds, and all of a sudden, it began raining. It was 12:00 PM when I reached parswara village ( a small village in Chamoli district of Uttrakhand). I sat down under a tree while waiting for the rain to stop. The place where I had to reach was Tewakharak and I had to trek almost 25 kilometers through a dense forest to reach my destination.

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I began walking along the trails that were leading me to the dense jungle I’d never seen before. I was almost lost when I came to a point where I saw two paths leading to different places, but I wasn’t sure which one to take. So I decided to take the one turning to the left.

Step Farming In The Region

Step Farming In The Region

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I walked almost 2 kilometers where I met a herdsman. I told him about my destination and asked him if I was on the right way, but I wasn’t. I walked back 2 kilometers and lost time. It was 3 in the evening, the sun was still over my head, but the forest was getting cooler and dry leaves were blowing in the strong wind. You must be familiar with the spooky wind howling sound if you have traveled through a dense forest. It’s really scary!

Pine Forest
Pine Forest
Mist Began To Cover Hills
Mist Began To Cover Hills

Because it was raining when I got off the bus, I could not get anything to eat on my way. But I found this juicy fruit called bayberries, it satisfied my hunger completely. The forest was filled  with bayberries, everywhere you could find bayberry trees.

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The path was quite smooth until now, but my problems began when the sweet bayberry jungle turned to dry pine forest. It was the time when dry pine leaves (needles) fall off the trees making it very difficult to walk on the uneven path. I had no option but to walk.

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A Pine Cone
A Pine Cone
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Rice Fields

I picked up a thick stick that could handle my weight. I cleaned the way with my stick and began walking slowly. I could hear the howling sound of strong winds. Forest sound is the creepiest sound I have ever heard especially when the sun is below the horizon.

 

The twilight was scenic and the sun was growing mellow. I still had almost 5 kilometers to walk when the nightmare began. I encountered a jackal, I’d heard a lot about jackal attacks, but never encountered a jackal before.

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Sky Flecked with Beautiful Twilight

I wanted a story from this trek but not definitely this one. I was perspiring heavily and didn’t know what to do. I once thought of going back too, seriously, I thought so. But I was running out of time so I had to walk.

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So, the jackal was some 50 steps away from me, I still don’t have any ideas if it was looking at me or not. I picked up a long stick with thorns. I started walking towards him, he wasn’t moving, but howling as if it was trying to call his mates too. Gosh! I was scared to death! Suddenly it ran down and disappeared within the forest while I could still hear howling sounds. I was relieved that it was gone, but after a few minutes the howling grew stronger. I didn’t know if it was for me or it’s their usual way 😉

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The Wide Blue Sky Spotted With Heavy Clouds

I started walking faster; I knew I was close to the human habitation when I saw an empty shed. I ran as fast as I could and took shelter in the shed for some 30 minutes while I waited for the howling sound to fade away. After almost 15 minutes, it was gone. I was relived once again.

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The Lifesaver Shed 😉

Finally, I reached where I could get clean water to drink and I knew I will get to see people soon. I’d never felt such happiness to see a human being before. 😉

I met a lady who told me the village is just a kilometer away, and the place where I was, was Binegaad. The sweet lady also offered me some bayberries she had collected from the jungle. I always say people from the hills are the most hospitable and friendly.

Finally, after walking a kilometer more, I was at my destination – Tewakharak.

The Guest House Where I Stayed
The So-Called Guest House Where I Stayed

 

How To Reach?

  • From Delhi – You will find Uttrakhand State buses on the last platform.
  • Take a bus from Anand Vihar ISBT to Ramnagar or Chaukhutiya.
  • You can take a bus wither to Ramnagar or directly to Chaukhutiya.

Getting off in Ramnagar

  • Take a bus to Chaukhutiya – get off and take another bus to Malkot.
  • Star you trek from the small bazaar of Malkot to Tewakharak village.

I took a longer route through Parswara village, but you can directly start your trek from Malkot. Take help of

locals to find the right way to the village. If you get to stay there for a day or two, go to Dalam Dhar.

It’s the highest peak of that specific region and offers a mesmerizing view of Chakori, Chaukhutiya,
and even Ranikhet. It’s a little known or absolutely unknown village in the lap of Himalayas.

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9 thoughts on “A spine-chilling trek to a laid-back village lost in time

  1. ;;;;;;Great …account of your travel in hills …and i was not lucky as you this time around ..i love bayberries very much but couldnot find them during my stay in my native place. Love to read about these journeys ..keep writing Tks.

    Liked by 1 person

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