The much-awaited day of September 2, 1984, saw our team from the BOI Employees Trekkers and Mountaineers Association and under the leadership of P.R. Agnihotri setting out by the night bus from Delhi for Uttarkashi which we reached the next afternoon.
Weary of the body, we collapsed in individual bundles on to the cool floor of the small cave. We had reached Panargufa after a 17 km walk, most of it up a steep slope.
CHAUKHAMBA stands as the ultimate rampart in the Himalayan panorama of the Uttarakhand Hills. Appearing to be situated somewhere in the middle, the old maps clarify that this formidable massif is in Garhwal since they name it “Badrinath Trek”.
The meadows of Panwali lie 4000 metres (13000 ft) above sea level on the traditional Kedarnath Gangotri pilgrim trek. Unadvertised, this place is a paradise for trekkers as also for cameramen. Just across the far horizon rise the gorgeous Himalayan peaks – Kedarnath Bhagirathi, Meru and many others. Most of these remain snowclad till late July.
Uttarakhand, the twin province of Kumaon and Garhwal is known for its dramatic mountain scapes and Sahastra Talurious torrents. The British turned geography on its head and called Uttarakhand “Kumaon Himalaya” although Garhwal is bigger and holier.
Over the past two years, the Garhwal Mandal Vikas Nigam of Uttar Pradesh has developed Auli, (which is situated above back-of-beyond Joshimath) as a winter sports resort. The GMVN organises 7-and 15-day ski courses for beginners and advanced learners between the months of December and March.