In the dead of winter, it is only common for most of us to plan a trip to the snow-laden mountains. So the journey from Rishikesh to Chopta starts through the steep roads cutting through the mountain from one destination to another. Following the turquoise blue stream of flowing river on one side and hue of green on the other side of the path.
Chandrashila trek is renowned for showcasing the enchanting beauty and grandeur of Himalayan peaks. Tunganath is indelibly linked to the origin of the Panch Kedar temples built by the Pandavas. Tungnath is an easy trek of around 3.5 km, perfect for starters. It has a well-paved path with small tea stalls on the way. The views and the meadows on this trek are sure to take your breath away. A steep trek of another 1.5 km takes you to Chandrashila, which rests at an elevation of 13000 ft. From here the Himalayan ranges of Trishul, Nanda Devi and Chaukhamba are clearly visible. The pathways entirely covered in snow on both sides gave a gist of what a cold walk on clouds would be. From feeling the snow falling from the sky on the face to slipping because of ice on stone it was a painful yet exciting journey in itself. The way to Chandrashila from Chopta was more of horror due to the narrow path but in the end, the view from the top is what matters. The journey down the peak was tougher as the snowfall was at its perk and legs were turned to stone. It was 2 in the afternoon and the sun was hardly seen in the midst of clouds. Finding a path through the snow we ended the trek with a hot Maggie. The first snow trek turned out to be the best trek ever.
Chopta is an unspoiled natural destination lying in the lap of the Uttarakhand, covered in a lush green shawl of pine, deodar, rhododendron forests, and offers views of the imposing Himalayan range as the beautiful backdrop. Analyzing the complementing shades of nature here the camping destination arrives. Alpine Adventure Camp has a sustainable set of 10 tents all run by local young people who know the Himalayas best. They know the trails, the mountains, berries, where to get the best tea and jam, how to tell if a storm is coming. Having visited in the month of November not only snowfall but also rainfall was experienced. Reaching the camp by 6 in the evening after a long bus journey the overwhelming view was worth the efforts. Later joining the tour guide for the night forest trail as the practice for the snow trek began. Walking through dark pine forest and the howling of wolves in the distance was thrilling but exciting. Completing the trail which ended approximately 2 km from the camp, landed us near a maggie stall. In the shivering season of winter experiencing rain in 11 degrees is another tragedy that took place. With the howling wolf sound in the background, sharp pine trees framing the sky, and cold rain showering we headed to camp sight. Morning with hot coffee and shining grass due to the rain and then the snow was the definition of a perfect winter morning. Though it is suggested to avoid traveling in the months of November and December wild experiences come with such things. At around 5 'o'clock in the morning, taking a quick journey from the campsite to the foot of the peak( it is said that it’s the lord of peaks).