Kheerganga – Gifted Abode for Natural Hot water Springs

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Parvati Valley is situated in the northern Indian state of Himachal Pradesh. From the confluence of the Parvati River with the River Beas, the Parvati Valley runs eastwards, through a steep-sided valley from the town of Bhuntar, in the Kullu valley. The valley offers beautiful view of Parvati River and the Glacier of Lahaul Spiti. The valley echoes of mystical power of nature and has lot to offer to the travelers.

Kheerganga is situated in Parvati Valley at a distance of 22 km from Manikaran. Kheerganga or Kheer Ganga as the name suggest is Ganga River ( the Ganges River) as White as a Kheer (an Indian sweet dish made from milk and Rice) The name Kheerganga came due to the milky waters of the river flowing in all its vastness and its streams flowing into Parvati valley from all sides of the mountain.

For Khirganga, one has to go by motor-able road up to a place called ‘Barshaini’ and from there to Khirganga on foot. This trek leads through hilly terrain. This is the place where ‘Kartik Ji’, the elder son of ‘Lord Shiva’ remained in ‘housands of years.

KheerGanga remains snow-covered during winters and only gets temporary settlement during summers which make is a perfect hide-out for those who want to smoke weed, hash etc. without any concern…… Cheap and safer staircase to heaven… The natural hot-water-spring experience is something that you will remember for a lifetime..

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The trek is very pleasant and offers some exhilarating views. The vegetation changes dramatically and opens up into a flatland that is graced by the occasional tent, the few guest houses and cafes and the temple premises which also comprises of the hot water spring.

KheerGanga is known for hot water stream which flows beneath the temple of Lord Shiva. Temple is highly revered hence alcohol is not permitted in KheerGanga however other kind of Intoxication are in surplus. There is well made pool to bathe in the hot water stream and water is really hot.

 

Great Himalayan National Park – The World’s Heritage Site

Great Himalayan National Park – Kullu, Himachal Pradesh

The Great Himalayan National Park (GHNP), located in the state of Himachal Pradesh lies within the Parvati valley of Kullu division. Its boundaries are also contiguous with the Pin Valley National Park. Spread over an area of 754 sq. km, the Great Himalayan National Park is the newest addition to the list of India’s most amazing national parks. Built in the year 1984, the park lies at an altitude of 1500 to 6000 meters. The exquisite location and scenic surroundings of this park are highlighted with Deodar and Oak trees.

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It boasts of over 375 fauna species, including 31 species of mammals and 181 species of birds. The fauna of the park includes some of the most exotic species of animals like snow leopard, blue sheep, Himalayan brown bear, Himalayan tahr, musk deer, goral and many others.

In June 2014, the Great Himalayan National Park was added to the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites. The UNESCO World Heritage Site Committee granted the status to the park under the criteria of “outstanding significance for biodiversity conservation”.

Five rare species in Great Himalayan National Park-

  1. The Western tragopan
  2. Snow leopard
  3. Himalayan Tahr
  4. Himalayan musk deer
  5. Himalayan blue poppy
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History

The Great Himalayan National Park (GHNP) is located in the northern state of Himachal Pradesh. The Tirthan Wildlife Sanctuary (61 sq.km.) and the Sainj Wildife Sanctuary (90 sq.km.) have also been brought under the National Park administration. Following a survey in 1980, the Himachal Wildlife Project-II, in 1983 , recommended the creation of GHNP and notification of intent was gazetted in March 1984. In 1994 the notification of intent to constitute the Sainj Wildlife Sanctuary was filed which was followed by a notification to include the upper Parvati catchment. In May 1999 the Government of Himachal Pradesh issued the final notification of the Great Himalayan National Park.

The best time of the year to visit the Great Himalayan National Park is between the months of April to June and September to November.

Malana Cream – The World’s Best Hashish

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Lurking in the North east Kullu range, Malana is completely isolated from the monotony of India’s city culture. This remote village is mainly known for it’s charas, and has over time drawn hashish lovers from all over the world. But Malana is so much more than that. Malana is famous for ‘Malana cream’, a strain of Cannabis hashish which has high oil content and an intensely fragrant aroma.  Malana Cream is a hash made from heirloom cannabis grown in this remote area of the Parvati Valley. In Amsterdam, the stuff sells for $250 per tola, which is 11.66 grams of hashish.

The Cannabis, the Police and the Government 

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Malana Village

For the locals, cannabis is a ‘religion.’ There is nothing else that grows in the valley except cannabis. Unlike other mountain villages where people farm potatoes and peas, Malana grows only one plant—cannabis. Infact, the stretch of cannabis fields in the whole of Parvati valley is quite unbelievable. They are seen growing wild everywhere. So, the livelihood of all Malani people depends on those 3 months of cannabis harvesting from September to November. There are approximately 7000 people in the village and almost each and everyone work together during the harvesting time.  But, the Malanis learnt the art of cannabis rubbing quite recently. Prior to that their only source of livelihood came from selling sheep wool.

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The Village That Grows The World’s Best Hashish.

Many hash retailers label hash as Malana Cream to increase profits. Yet, the real stuff is so popular due to the quality of the beginning cannabis strains. The heirloom varieties grown in Malana are naturally high resin producers, making hash extractions from the plant all the more potent.

Some claim that hash made from Malana plants contain 30 to 40% THC, which is pretty darn high considering many Indian cannabis plants produce between 5 and 8% THC per plant. The hash itself is dark black and has a bit of a chewing gum consistency.

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Now the world knows of the sweet pleasures of the Parvati valley. Malana cream has won the Best Hashish title twice, in 1994 and 1996, at High Times magazine’s Cannabis Cup. The village is a stoners paradise branded in travel and ganja-hunting literature as the exotic and alluring “ Malana and the Magic Valley.”

 

 

Pin Parvati Trek Unforgettable 11 Days- A Perfect Blend of Natural Vale Fantasies

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Pin Parvati trek is one of the most beautiful treks in Himachal Pradesh. This pass links Parvati Valley in Kullu with Pin Valley of Spiti. Hence it derives the name Pin Parvati Pass. There is no other trek in all over the Western Himalayan region, which can match the grandeur of Pin Parvati Trek. Sir Louis Dane, an Englishman first discovered this high pass trek in 1884 as entry point to Spiti from Kullu valley. This is a very difficult trek owing to its high in altitude and remains under snowfall for most of the year, but also because it involves very long journey beyond habitation. An experienced guide is a must on this trek as this place is difficult to locate.

imagesdffTaking the trekkers to a maximum altitude of 5,319m above the sea level, the Pin Parvati trek is usually undertaken during the months of July to September and requires excellent trekking skills and techniques. This trek offers a linkage between Parvati Valley in Kulu to the Pin valley in Spiti and hence the name goes Pin Parvati Pass.  Manikaran dwelling between the splendid rivers namely Beas and Parvati, northeast of Bhuntar in the Kullu District is a must watch on this trial. Pine trees stands along throughout the trek. This trek being on a Buddhist region, all those traveling can make a visit to the Ki Gompo and Tabo monastery.

A mixture of steep slopes, gradual climbs, barren mountains, snow-clad peaks and rugged passes, this 100km trek needs high trekking skills and can be completed in a course of 11 days. Also, as the Pin Parvati Pass trek takes you through some of the highest peaks, getting acclimatised to the environs also become a major requirement for successful completion of the trek.

indexddPin Parvati Pass Day wise Plan

Day 01: Arrive in Bhuntar from where a vehicle will pick you up and drop you to Manikaran.

Day 02: Manikaran – Barsheni – Khirganga (3020m)
Duration: 5 hours

Khirganga is a hot spring where Lord Shiva is said to have meditated. The difference between the spring here and in Manikaran is that after a bath in Khirganga, your skin will feel clammy and greasy whereas after a bath in the spring at Manikaran, your skin will feel dry.

Day 03: Khirganga – Tunda Bhuj (3285m)
Duration: 5 hours

The trek commences through dense forests and flower-strewn meadows. The progress is gradual and slow as it’s a steep climb to Tunda Bhuj.

Day 04: Tunda Bhuj – Thakur Kuan (3620m)
Duration: 6 hours

The trail continues through a landscape strewn with waterfalls, lakes and meadows till Thakur Kuan.

Day 05: Thakur Kuan – Odi Thach (3800m)
Duration: 5 hours

It’s another day of steep climb to reach the high altitude meadow of Odi Thach. On the path, you will cross the Pandu Bridge, which is made of a single rock on the river Parvati. It is said to made by the Pandavas during their exile in the Himalayas.

indexDay 06: Odi Thach – Mantalai Lake (4115m)
Duration: 9 hours

The trek up to Mantalai lake is a gradual climb. Once at the lake, you can see the Mantalai Glacier, which is the source of the river Parvati.

Day 07: Mantalai – Base of Pin Parvati Pass (4300m)
Duration: 7 hours

Ascend to the base camp of Mount Parvati which also serves as the base of the pass.

Day 08: Base of Pin Pass – Campsite over Pin Pass (4110m)
Duration: 8 hours

A steep climb takes you to Pin Pass (5300m). At the top of a large snow filled, crevassed hollow leads to the broad rocky saddle of the pass. At the top, one can see a splendid view of the snowy mountains of Hampta region on one side and the Pin valley of Spiti on the other.

Day 09: Campsite over Pin Pass – Tiai (3700m)
Duration: 5 hours

Trek along the Pin river in to the Pin Valley National park. Look out for the elusive snow leopards, musk deer and ibex.

Day 10: Tiai – Mud (3650m)
Duration: 5 hours

Trek through the barren, stark landscape of Spiti to Mud, a pretty village perched on a hillside. We will camp here for the night and in the morning government bus service to Kaza.

Day 11: Drive from Mud to Kaza. Our trip ends once we reach Kaza.

 

Pin Parvati Pass Cost Includes:

– Camping Tents, Kitchen tents, Dining Tent and Sleeping bags (Holofill) and Carry mats.
– Nutritious, high calorie vegetarian food. (Food Cycle starts with Lunch on Day 2 and ends with breakfast on Day 11)
– Guide, cook and camp helpers.
– Porters to carry loads on the route.
– Tents on triple sharing basis (3 people in each tent)

 

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