Hampta Circular :A paradise for novice trekkers
“Main udhna chahta hun..daudna chahta hun.. Girna bhi chahta hun….bus rukna nahi chahta..” Inspired by Ye jawani hai deewani.. We all loved the scenes of trekking in manali.
But with the idea comes the question where will find a trail with moderate difficulty for 1st time trekkers. I must say HAMPTA CIRCULAR gives you all what you want. From Challenging hike in Himalayas to rejuvenating camp sites.. From blast of energy to dead tired sleep.
Youth Hostel organizes rather it perfectly manages it every year.
Duration of Trek – 8 Days of Life.
Best Time: This route can be explored any time between May to October but the best time is in the mid of May due to snow. From the beginning of June snow starts melting.
In a gang of 55 crazy wanderers from all corners of country, We started it…
Our Base camp – 15 Miles ,
It was a permanent camp set up by YHAI on the way to Manali. All the buses going to Manali cross this point. It is a camp site almost on the banks of River Beas.
Day 1 – At 15 Miles Base Camp
We registered ourselves, given our kit of blankets, sleeping sheets and rucksacks (Yes they give rucksacks for higher camps) and relaxed.
Fire..Fire..Campfire (Without actual fire) at Base camp is the best thing to happen where we get to know our teammates.
Day 2- Acclimatization
For the night owls like me this was the toughest task of the day –waking up at 5:30 and going for exercise. After relishing the breakfast, we packed our bags to go for acclimatization hike. 1st time walking a few miles with backpack. We came back by lunch and it was our turn to perform in campfire. It was fun to prepare it and even more hilarious to perform it in front of some 150 people when the song is Baby doll rocked by the beautiful guys of group.
Day 3 – Acclimatization Part 2.
Difficult and longer hike this day to prepare us for upcoming challenges of trail. Steep and narrow pathways with staircase farms around giving a clear view of daunting Himalayas.
Day 4 – Trek to Tiligan (2470 Mts)
Bags packed , Shoe laces tight and sparkle in eyes when you walk like this and people make way for you cheering for you.. that’s where you feel that you will do it.
Crossing the gates of Base camp and barriers of mind. We departed & YHAI Bus dropped us at Jagatsukh from where we started our real challenge.
We saw some civilization till 2 kms, Banara Temple and one beautiful small shop selling Maggie and momos etc at our lunch point and after that only nature and us. As we ascended Step by step, Nature unfolded itself to us , to touch us and to pacify us in all forms.
Great Himalayan Dhauladhar range and Pir Panjal range were along with us under the azure sky on the left side of the trail. A clear sky and a top view of Manali city were making our route bliss to eyes. After 4 hours of trek we reached our most cosy and tranquil camp site. TILIGAN.
It welcomed us with heavy downpour and beautiful sight of cows grazing the greenest grass ever. Reminds me of some movie scene from Switzerland.
When your phone’s ringtone gets replaced by cow bells… Your dairy packed milk gets replaced by fresh milk… The polluted air you inhale is replaced by pure oxygen and when fresh water stream replaces your chemically treated water. Undoubtedly mark your presence in heaven.
Day-5 Trek to Surotu (3250 Mts)
A straight uphill right behind our camp site was beautiful, amazing and rocky, a perfect one to click pictures but it came as a surprise to all that we have to CLIMB it. No pathways no route. Random climbing infuriated a mountaineer in all of us. We crossed luxuriant and awe inspiring hills, narrowest of paths, muddy trails and that big giant mountain following us throughout. A trek of 5 hours landed us at our highest camp site. Having a spectacular view of our summit, steep valley beneath and that music of waterfalls soothed us. Day was beautiful here with little showers, Evening was even better with visible snowfall at the peak and night was the best with the clearest of sky and those beautiful stars twinkling all over our head. We have spotted the constellations we could only read in our text books. And our eyes had enough of treat for the day that took us a peaceful sleep.
Day 6 – Trek to Surotu Top ( 4200 mts)
The day has arrived. The day of highest point. The Day of maximum Adrenalin rush. The day of testing our courage and Endeavor. We started our trek with that urge to have the best views of life. Crossing meadows & Rhododendron , Rocks, waterfalls and the snow patches. The last of the tree lines vanished out of the sight and are left behind We were panting throughout the climb and reached Surotu Top after 4 hours.
Now the choice was between climbing the mountain having perpendicular slope or to sit and relax.In different bunches people climbed up, some till last point, some till highest rock and some at the base of it to have lunch and snow slides.We were in 2nd category of reaching the highest rock. Kyunki kitna bhi karo kuch na kuch reh hi jaata hai..
After having snow slides and lunch we came back to Surotu camp for overnight stay.
We Set our feet on the ground and retire for the night with a feeling of contentment at the heart.
Day 7 – Sethan
Last time we came out of our tents and started our down trek to our last site. Whistling woods and chirping birds were bidding us a goodbye. We crossed a huge waterfall, had that balanced H2O and started walking again. After a steep descend through a forest consists of Pine, Maple, Walnut, Oak, Alder we halted for the lunch and photographs in the green valley full of meadows and a different species of lizards. Our Last day of camping ended at a concrete cottage at Sethan, Where we met Electricity, Vehicles and what not that we call technology after 5 days. A blast of fun at camp fire ended our evening.
Day 8 – Down to Manali
Magnificent large Himalayan Vultures were the highlights of this day and we reached Prini in 4 hours and Then Manali in another 30 mins.
The trek was rendezvous. All of us thanked Mother Nature for blessing us in the entire trek. Our special thanks to YHAI and their staff. They created the trail by taking sincere efforts. Our cook served us delicious food time to time without any repetition of menu starting from Pasta to gulab-jamuns.
And we all were felicitated with a certificate of Hampta Circular Trek Completion
A special thanks to Kshitij Ambekar , Amit Dodhia , Vipul and Sundar for their amazing clicks.