660 Hikes and counting
Hiking from Dhobighat to Manjushree park via Taudaha
Hiking from Dhobighat to Manjushree park via Taudaha

Title Exploring the cave and hiking around the southern region of the Kathmandu valley
Start Date 2010-05-23
End Date 2010-05-23
Duration (hrs) 7 hrs
Distance (km) 8 kms
Hike coordinator Adam Manandhar
Participants Adam Manandhar, Anup Paudyal, Ashish Tuladhar, Awanish Ranjan, Badri Adhikari, Binod Raj Pathak, Chandani Shrestha, Rajeev Shrestha, Raunak Tuladhar, Satyajit Shah, Shilpa Shrestha, Shreejana Prajapati, Subin Shrestha, Sudeep Ghimire
Photos by Ashish Tuladhar, Anup Poudyal, Satyajit Shah, Shilpa Shrestha, Subin Shrestha
Captions by Ashish Tuladhar, Anup Poudyal, Satyajit Shah, Shilpa Shrestha, Subin Shrestha
Report by Shilpa Shrestha
Creative Support Dijup Tuladhar, Prerana Pradhan
Published Date 2010-05-26
Origin Location2 Destination
Name Dhobighat Manjushree park Taudaha
District Kathmandu
Zone Bagmati
Recommended Items to See Hills and locality Temple, Park and Caves Lake and birds
Recommended Places to Eat Any local hotels, Thakali bhanchaghar
Recommended Places to Stay
Recommended Activities Hiking and Photo Journalism Cave Exploring and Photo Journalism Bird watching and Photo Journalism
Recommended means of transportation VAN/Bus
Available means of transportation VAN/Bus/Bike
Culture Influenced by Newari
Distance from previous Location 6  kms 5 kms 3 kms
Means of Transport VAN
Duration 1  hrs on VAN 2 hrs 4 hrs
Shilpa Shrestha recollects: Back to Cave Days About Chobar Chobar is located south-west of the city and the water of the Bagmati River can be seen flowing through picturesque Chobar gorge and out of the valley. Legend has it that when Manjushri drained the Kathmandu Valley of its legendary lake, Chobar Gorge was one of the places he smote with his sword to release the water. As the Bagmati River slices through a wrinkle in the valley floor south of Chobar, it really does look like the work of a neat sword stroke. A path along the west bank scrambles up to the main entrance of Chobar Gupha (Chobar Cave), which Hindus associate with Shiva and Tibetan Buddhists with the saint Guru Padma Sambhava. A Czech team explored it in 1985 for at least 1.2km before pronouncing it the third-largest cave in South Asia. Locals claim it's connected to Chobar's Adinath Mandir, the Shantipur temple at Swayambhu, or even Tibet or Varanasi. The Hindu belief, however, is that Krishna created the Chobar Gorge by throwing a thunderbolt that split the mountain. The banks of the Bagmati River on the south side of Chobar Gorge have been paved with steps down to the river. These are used for ritual cleansing and cremations in the Bagmati River.

We were all given torch lights and the group of 14 entered the cave

Unlike other hikes where we have at least 1-2 hrs of drive, in this hike, we got off the van in almost half an hour, and started walking. Just when I was feeling complacent about the pleasant and not so hot weather, the sun came up to exhaust everyone. It did succeed too for a while but soon after that we reached the entrance that led to the cave. We had hired an official guide as we wanted to play safe. We were all given torch lights and the group of 14 entered the cave. Once you get in, there was just no going back; you had to get through the route. The cave somehow reminded me of those hidden tunnel in those fictitious books that used to travel stealthily for some big mission. Of course with these head torches, getting through this passage was not any less than a mission for us. In the initial minutes itself, we sensed how tough the coming hours would be. In such a narrow path, we all had to sit and drag ourselves forward. While we were already fretting, we realized that the difficult ones were still ahead. The cave architecture required us to stoop, crawl, lie on our stomach, jump off the tall rocks and twist the body in all possible ways. All weight on our knees, elbows or palms was such a distress that people yearned to sit. With much effort, when we had somehow managed to pass it, we saw a dead end only to realize that we had to get back. So that meant climbing the rock that we jumped off, getting through the same narrow hole where weight mattered (stressful for the slightly healthy ones, eh?). No matter how agonizing the adventure was, stopping was not an option as one had to catch up the trail forward. Amidst the chaos, we never forgot posing for picture after all we needed to preserve memories of such an eventful experience. After 3 hrs of continuous exploration, finally we reached a point where our elbows and knees got respite and we could stand back to our feet. After getting back into form, we all saw light at the end of the tunnel, quite literally this time around. After the last bit of stooping and crawling, we got out of the cave to see how muddy and dirty each of us was.

...when Manjushree, cut the rock at Chobar with his sword and released the valley’s water

After getting some rest and washing off the dirt, we headed towards Taudaha. Another interesting story says that when Manjushree, cut the rock at Chobar with his sword and released the valley’s water, thousands of snakes were supposed to have been swept out of the valley – leaving behind the snake king Karkotak who still lives close to the gorge in a pond called Taudaha. However we saw only fishes in the lake. Few of us fed the fish, few went to see the birds while others just relaxed and enjoyed the scenic view of the serene water. Then we all realized how drained our energy was. Hence to fuel ourselves, we spotted a Thakali place and treated our empty stomachs heartily with Thakali food. Then this memorable hike came to an end. This day was unlike any other hike, the D2ians had been to and the body sore will certainly keep the hiking spirit alive for few more days to come. Please click on the image to see its large version.

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