A Drive Towards My Home : Joshimath

Shubham Pokhriyal

Do you ever imagine a house at a faraway place surrounded by big snow peaked mountains, blue skies infused with white clouds, cold breezes hitting on the face as you’re awestruck by the beauty?

A full moon night at Joshimath

This might be a dream of many but I was one of those lucky who was born at one such place. ’Joshimath’ a small town of the Garhwal Himalayan region situated at some 6150 feet above the mean sea level, a perfect mountain getaway.

The famous pilgrim of ‘Badrinath’ and ‘Hemkunt Shahib’ make it a holy place for those seeking spirituality.

For the adventure and nature lover this is more than just a place, having the world heritage site ‘Valley of flower’, to the mesmerizing beauty of Majestic Nanda Devi, the skiing playground of Auli holding the second tallest and largest cable car ride and the famous ‘Kuari pass’ trek.

Auli in Summers

Start your day with the view of the mighty Himalayas, as your day break with a cup of coffee;laze around on the grasslands of the Auli during summers with a lake aside and walk on the less busy streets beneath the stars or brave those freezing cold to get out the bed during winters; ski on the slopes of Auli and sit beside the heaters and warm yourself in the blankets at night to wake up to the magic of nature- Snow, if the weather turns grey and this isn’t it, but wait till you reach here and find it for yourself.

Well for this you need to get to this place first.

Heading out from Dehradun

Start your day early since it is a long way and night drives are forbidden. Don’t bother of getting nicely dressed, just pack whatever you could but never forget some woolens no matter what season it is. 

Start from the plains of ‘Doon,’ a glittering jewel in the lower Himalayas. The journey starts with the first ray of sun; breakfast can be put on hold and be savored on the highway. As the sunrises, you leave the fields of Doon behind and enter in the forest, a forest that reaches the world yoga capital ‘Rishikesh,’ and by driving through the market, we reach the famous Ram and Laxamjhula where Ganges flowing silently. You leave the plains and the starts behind while driving through the zig-zag mountain roads.

Leaving behind the plains

For almost an hour or two into the drive along the Ganges on your right, you drive through trees and forests traveling the ups and downs of a smooth ride. You might stop at one of the restaurants for breakfast along a silently flowing holy river. The day has already broken but it doesn’t seem so because of the morning drive among those tress and forest which have kept the air clean and fresh. After the drive of almost two hours, the road starts narrowing and the gradient starts to increase; now, when you look back, the plains are left far behind and can hardly be seen, and the mountain ranges starts appearing- valleys after valleys.

These valleys can scare you if you’re new to the mountains. Driving carefully in the twist and turns of the road, you reach ‘Devprayag’ one of the PanchPrayag (five confluences) of Alaknanda River, where Alaknanda and Bhagirathi rivers meet and take the name Ganga or Ganges River. Two rivers with different coloured water flowing from entirely different valleys confluence here to form the biggest and sacred river of the nation.

The drive from here is now at the bank of river Alaknanda. The hills are moderate and the drive is easy but the sun is vertically overhead on these hilly plains. The bright daylight and the roads with little settlement of this part can make the journey monotonous. The brown hills and little vegetation sometimes add to the discomfort. But as you reach to the hilly plains of ‘Malitha’ village, the greener fields with plenty of fresh water sources brings a site of pleasure. Closely followed crossing a huge bridge, you enter ‘Srinagar’ the largest town of the Garhwal Himalayas having a Central Recognized University, an NIT and a Govt. Medical College, an ITI and a Govt. Polytechnic institute; this is also the most important education hub for the entire Garhwal region. Drive through the busy market of this town to the open highway along the reservoir of a Dam. The roads are smooth wide and the journey here starts changing with vistas and the drive is mostly zig-zag taking you further deep into the laps of the mountains. The river is a continuous companion with blue skies. Break the journey to rejuvenate on the beaches formed by the reservoir of the dams with cold water and white sand. As you start feeling hungry for lunch, the small roadside restaurants serving some simple yet tasty food welcomes you with warm hospitality.

Karanprayag

Don’t get too lazy since it’s still a long way home. When you look at your watch, you’ll realize that half-day is already up. The road now enters ‘Rudraprayag,’ second of the PanchPrayag confluence of Mandakini and Alaknanda; the route to Kedarnath diverges from here.

For here, the hills start turning into mountains, the winds start feeling different and the vegetation also begins a shift. The roads here are well-maintained and the vistas ahead, the drive starts getting scenic. The villages on the other side of the valley can make you wonder about the life of the people there. Indulge in thoughts and the smoother roads take you to the largest pieces of flatland in this mountainous region- ‘Gauchar,’ closely followed by another confluence of Alaknanda and Pindari- ‘Karanprayag.’ It will be late afternoon by the time you reach here and the scorching sun starts melting down. From here onward, there’s tress at one side and open views at the other. The valley isn’t steep but gradually gains altitude.

The final confluence of Alkananda and Nandakini- ‘Nandprayag’ is reached.  The wide roads disappear and now the roads are to be driven carefully. The fields and villages appear beautiful as the sun starts turning red. Another forest drives through narrow highways with villages and settlement at a regular interval, we pass the ‘Chamoli’ settlement, where we witness the magnificent high mountain ranges for the first time; the mountains strike us with their giant appearance. Though the high snow-peaked mountains are still missing but the mountains here will make you realize their vastness. And the roads take you further into them.

Sunsets on the way!

From here onward, there’s tress at one side and open views at the other. The valley isn’t steep but gradually gains altitude. The final confluence of Alkananda and Nandakini- ‘Nandprayag’ is reached.  The wide roads disappear and now the roads are to be driven carefully. The fields and villages appear beautiful as the sun start turning red. Another forest drives through narrow highways with villages and settlement at a regular interval, we pass the ‘Chamoli’ settlement, where we witness the magnificent high mountain ranges for the first time; the mountains strike with their giant appearance. Though the high snow-peaked mountains are still missing but the mountains here will make you realize their vastness. And the roads take you further into them.

This also leads to small late evening break in between those mighty Himalayan ranges, with beautiful lights of the sunset creating magical and mesmerizing scenery. It is then that you are finally opened up to your first encounter with the mighty Himalayas. The snow-covered mountains in the falling light of the sun will leave you awestruck with its beauty. They’re the mountains at their best, welcoming you with their cold breeze. The only road with minimal traffic at this hour in the lap of the mountain and the setting sun adds to the charm of the final few kilometres of the drive. It’s really been a long day on the roads leaving behind the plains and chaos of the cities; a drive started with the first ray of the sun in the changing valleys vistas, twists and turns, now the rush to reach home gains its momentum. The high mountain peaks are a constant companion now and some final twists and turns keep on gaining altitude rapidly.

With the breezes hitting colder and the snow-clad peaks getting nearer and clearer, a final turn on the right opens up to the town of Joshimath, a place I call “My Home.”

Joshimath after a snowfall

53 thoughts on “A Drive Towards My Home : Joshimath

  1. Today, I went to the beach front with my children. I found a sea shell and gave it to my 4 year old daughter and said “You can hear the ocean if you put this to your ear.” She put the shell to her ear and screamed. There was a hermit crab inside and it pinched her ear. She never wants to go back! LoL I know this is totally off topic but I had to tell someone!

  2. I like what you guys are up too. Such smart work and reporting! Carry on the excellent works guys I have incorporated you guys to my blogroll. I think it’ll improve the value of my web site :).

  3. Most of the things you mention is supprisingly appropriate and it makes me wonder the reason why I had not looked at this in this light before. This particular piece really did switch the light on for me as far as this specific subject matter goes. However there is one factor I am not too cozy with and whilst I make an effort to reconcile that with the actual core theme of your issue, allow me observe exactly what the rest of your visitors have to point out.Well done.

  4. hey there and thank you for your information – I have definitely picked up anything new from right here. I did however expertise some technical points using this web site, since I experienced to reload the website many times previous to I could get it to load properly. I had been wondering if your web hosting is OK? Not that I am complaining, but sluggish loading instances times will sometimes affect your placement in google and can damage your quality score if advertising and marketing with Adwords. Well I am adding this RSS to my email and could look out for a lot more of your respective fascinating content. Ensure that you update this again very soon..

  5. I think that what you posted was actually very logical.
    However, consider this, what if you added a little information? I am not suggesting
    your content is not good., however suppose you added a title that grabbed folk’s attention? I mean A Drive
    Towards My Home : Joshimath – Travelling Bulls is kinda vanilla.
    You ought to glance at Yahoo’s front page and note how they write article titles to get viewers to click.
    You might add a video or a related picture or two to get readers excited about
    everything’ve got to say. In my opinion, it might make your website a little bit more interesting.

  6. I like the valuable information you provide on your articles.

    I will bookmark your weblog and take a look at once more right here frequently.
    I’m moderately sure I will learn many new stuff
    proper right here! Best of luck for the next!

  7. Excellent post. Keep writing such kind of info on your site.
    Im really impressed by your site.
    Hey there, You’ve done a great job. I’ll definitely digg it and in my view recommend
    to my friends. I am sure they will be benefited from this website.

  8. Excellent post. I was checking continuously this
    blog and I am impressed! Extremely useful info specially the last part 🙂 I care for
    such information much. I was looking for this particular info for a long time.
    Thank you and best of luck.

  9. After looking into a number of the articles on your blog, I
    seriously like your technique of writing a blog.

    I added it to my bookmark webpage list and will be checking
    back in the near future. Please check out my website too and tell me
    how you feel.

  10. Hello There. I found your weblog using msn. That is a very smartly written article.
    I will make sure to bookmark it and return to learn more of
    your useful info. Thank you for the post. I will certainly return.

  11. I’d like to thank you for the efforts you have put in penning
    this site. I am hoping to see the same high-grade blog posts from
    you later on as well. In truth, your creative writing abilities has inspired me to get my very own blog now ;
    )

  12. Simply want to say your article is as amazing. The clearness to your put up is simply great and i
    could suppose you are an expert on this subject.
    Well together with your permission let me to take hold of your RSS feed to keep up to date with drawing close post.
    Thanks one million and please continue the enjoyable work.

  13. I’ve been browsing on-line greater than three
    hours these days, but I never found any interesting article like yours.
    It’s pretty price enough for me. In my opinion, if all site owners and bloggers
    made excellent content as you did, the net
    might be a lot more helpful than ever before.

  14. Attractive component of content. I just stumbled upon your blog and in accession capital to assert
    that I get actually enjoyed account your weblog posts. Any way I
    will be subscribing to your feeds or even I success you get admission to constantly fast.

  15. Thanks a lot for sharing this with all folks
    you actually recognise what you are speaking approximately!

    Bookmarked. Kindly also seek advice from my site =).
    We may have a hyperlink trade arrangement between us

  16. I believe that is one of the most important information for me.
    And i’m happy reading your article. However want to commentary on some common issues, The site taste is
    wonderful, the articles is actually nice : D. Just
    right process, cheers

  17. I’m now not sure where you are getting your information,
    however good topic. I needs to spend a while studying more or figuring out more.
    Thank you for great information I used to be searching for this information for my mission.

  18. I just couldn’t depart your website before suggesting that I extremely enjoyed the standard information a person provide for your visitors? Is gonna be back often to check up on new posts

  19. I simply want to mention I am just new to blogging and actually enjoyed you’re website. Most likely I’m going to bookmark your blog . You certainly have incredible writings. Regards for revealing your web-site.

  20. You really make it seem really easy together with your presentation but I to find this matter to be actually something that I believe I would never understand. It kind of feels too complicated and very huge for me. I am taking a look ahead in your subsequent put up, I will try to get the hold of it!

  21. Wow! This can be one particular of the most useful blogs We’ve ever arrive across on this subject. Actually Wonderful. I am also an expert in this topic therefore I can understand your effort.

  22. Utterly pent content material, appreciate it for entropy. “The bravest thing you can do when you are not brave is to profess courage and act accordingly.” by Corra Harris.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *