Crossing of the Bhaba Pass - A Trek Diary

Mriganka Das

Photographs: Author
Category: Trekking, Hiking
Date of Publication: Feb 12 , 2015Vol-02 Issue-02

Day 1 & 2 - July 5th & 6th, 2014

The team consisting of six members started journey on SaturDay, 5th July, 2014 at around 4 pm from Ishapore for Howrah. We left Howrah for Kalka by Kalka Mail at 11.40pm.

Enroute to Kara

Day 3 - July 7th, 2014

After two Days, on 7th July 2014, we arrived in Kalka at 4.30 am. From Kalka we went to Shimla by bus. Changing the bus we reached Rampur. From Rampur we took a local vehicle for Kafnu. Crossing the Saltuj River after a long and dangerous journey we reached Kafnu at around 9 pm (7878Ft). Our pre-contracted guide, Mr. Rameswar was waiting there for us. That night we stayed at Hotel Lake View at Kafnu.

Day 4 - July 8th, 2014

Kafnu is a scenic village with bountiful natural beauty and humble villagers. Good quality apple is the main source of income of Kafnu villagers. Rameswar informed us that for some unavoidable reason he will unable to guide us in our journey. So he tagged Kaulram, an experienced guide of this route with us. We started our journey for first Day with Kaulramleaving with four ponies and the guide of ponies, Gable. After crossing Bhaba River by bridge we went to the right side of the bank. From this region, the climb was slightly upwards. Then we crossed a 'jhora' named Giarekhar and took entry inside the Bhaba Sanctuary.After one hour we found plain grassland. From there our trail took North West. That Day we were amazed by the hospitality and generosity of a Himachalivillager who gave our ailing member,Mihir Da a glass of lassi.Finally, we reached a vast meadow and then ended the Day trekking after six hour at Muling(12000 Ft), Himachal Pradesh.

Kara Campsite

Day 5 - July 9th, 2014

On 9th July, we started our trek at around 9 am in the morning. After crossing a few humps we reached a lush green beautiful meadow and then ascended upwards. Then we felt little breathing trouble as vegetation became sparse. Next, we had to cross a natural ice-bridge and walked 300 feet upwards. From this area, Muling was looking very beautiful. On that Day we crossed a wet road and reached our destination Kara, an eye soothing tenting ground from where we noticed the shallow Kara Lake with her slowbeautiful waves.

Day 6 - July 10th, 2014

At beginning of the Day we had to cross the Bhaba River divided into eight (8) branches. Kaulram and Gable helped us to cross the wavy and ice-cold water of Bhaba quite safely. Here, TundiaKhar, a tributary of Bhaba meets the riverBhabaraising the water level. The confluence of these two rivers is called Pasha. Then we took entry at left side of Pasha.The route from here was steep and upwards, and Bhaba River was at some distance. After trekking for three and half kilometers we noticed a realm of ice. On our right-hand side there we innumerable waterfalls. After crossing an ice patch we came across a vast ice field where we wouldput our tent for the night. The base camp was named Fustirung (13776 Ft) was like a gorge, so here the wind speed was less.

Fustirung Campsite

Day 7 - July 11th, 2014

ToDay we faced our main challenge. Early morning we were awakened by byKaulram and after putting in warm cloths we began our Day trek at around 5.30 am. From this point Bhaba turns westward. We crossed the risky boulder zone cautiously and then the hard ice zone. We noticed some glacier tables throughout that particular zone. The way was downward and we followed it. Where we reached was a pan shaped basin made of hard ice. Kaulram pointed us out the origin of Bhaba and then we walked forward. Suddenly we noticed our friend Swapanda waving his hand from a distant place. We became sure that it was the Pass. We were very tired but the unavoidable attraction energized us and we staggered our way and reached at BhabaJote (16200Ft) situated in the great Himalaya Range. Behind us was west Kinnaur area and from here we would enter the beautiful Spiti valley. In ancient times,India traded with Tibet through the Bhaba Pass. And it was also the route of spiritual relation between Kinnaur and Key Monastery of Spiti valley. At 2.30 pm we started to decending downwards and enjoyed a glissading of about 3 kilometers. After crossing a vivid Glacier and Moren zone finally we reached at MagrumChe at 9.30 pm.

Approaching Bhaba Pass

Day 8 - July 12th, 2014

On 12th July we woke up at around 11 am in the morning. After completing the usual Day's walk we started walking upwards and turned north. Here we crossed a very narrow and dangerous area with the help of our guide. Turningaround I noticed snow-capped mountain peaks under blue sky and a thread-like path going towards Pin-Parvati Pass. Margumche CampWe travelled unwards and after an hour of trekking we saw a muddy waterfall meeting with the Pin river. At around 4pm we ended that Day trekking at Balder and as night fell we experienced something exceptional - actually it was a full moon night with silver disk like moon in the starry sky. We enjoyed the scene together.

Day 9 - July 13th, 2014

It was the final Day of our trekking and we had to cover only 5 kms to reach Mud Village but our target was Kaza. So we set out early. We were charmed to see a 40 feet wide waterfall on our way. There were three such waterfalls one after another. We crossed the risky zone very carefully because the boulders were unstable. After crossing Farka Village we were attracted by a small hamlet Mud with a hundred small huts. Crossing a nice bridge finally we reached the spectacular Mud village. From mud we travelled to Kaza and spent a Day at Kaza. From Kaza we went Manali and from manali we came back to Kolkata on 12th July.

Bhaba Pass Trek More Images

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