For me, the hiking from to Kalinchowk was a package of adventure, celebrations and pilgrimage. The mood among fellow hikers was like the one every child feels in festive time. But, it was a different mood when we left motor on dusty, bumpy unpaved track after long journey from Kathmandu to Kuri. Everybody seemed tired and covered with dust. There was a sigh of relief to leave our four wheel carrier. The journey began on trail through temperate forest. We made way through forest crisscrossing the bumpy motor track frequently. The moderate steepness was not difficult for any of us; even to the freshers making steps in mountainous terrain for the first time ever.
The tiredness of long motor journey now seemed to fading away with freshness of nature, and the mood was shifting. The high point of this hiking was that everybody wanted to leave their day to day business behind and feel the nature, its toughness, beauty and freshness. Everybody was in jolly mood throughout the journey to Kalinchowk. As we were few minutes’ ahead from Kuri, there were patches of snow by the side of trail. Many of us were seeing and touching it for the first time and getting really excited. Snow is not common experience to most Nepalese despite having many high snow covered mountains. Hence, there was great excitement among all of us as. It was really fun to hit each other with snow balls and take photographs of those jovial moments.
When the team reached Kalinchowk, all of us were overwhelmed seeing snow covered hills. It surprised us all to see so much snow around as we were expecting to see beautiful mountains from top of Kalinchowk hill on clear sky. It swept away tiredness of the long walk. Everyone seemed refreshed and in jolly mood. Everyone was rushing to capture those moments on camera of snow melting away. The valley was calm with lots of snow around and a few houses nearby. However, top of hills are really windy. Our team members had already managed rooms for a night. There were no concerns for lodging and food.
The lodge was newly built. It was nice one by any standard. Before dinner, we sat around fire as sub-zero temperature crippled the excitement we had earlier. Some fellow hikers tested indigenous alcoholic drink called ‘Tongba’. After having food, everyone went to their rooms. Some played cards on bed while others drank Vodka/Rum. It was mid-night before everybody covered themselves with blankets. The lodge was wooden built and we could hear people in the next room.
The very next day, we woke up early morning at 5. We had tea. Then, by 6 am, we were on our way to top of Kalinchowk Hill where Kalinchowk temple is located. We could not make it before sun rise as we were already late to start our journey. However, we made it by an hour plus time. It was a really nice feeling to see snow covered high mountains so close and clear in the early morning. We spent around 45 minutes there praying, worshiping the Devi (Goddess) and take beautiful photographs with snow covered high mountains in the background. On the way back to Charikot, we were on a reserved van from.
The trip from Kalinchowk to Charikot was definitely going to be remembered by many of us. On arriving at Charikot, for a while no one were in the mood to talk about the excitement we had yesterday and the morning before. The next stop was the Bhimeswor Temple. We spent few minutes there worshiping and watching temple. Then, we came back to Charikot. All of us were hungry as it was already noon and nobody had eaten any food. We had lunch and a little rest. Everybody seemed satisfied and happy to have been a part of the exciting hiking. It was already 2 pm. On the way back to Kathmandu, everybody thought of the trip we had, and how proud we were of the conquest.
As an intern, I got an opportunity to go hiking with the Deerwalk team for which I feel very grateful. Hiking destination was Kalinchowk. The place has a unique environment and is exceptionally rich in bio-diversity, which makes this region one of the finest tourist destinations in Nepal. It lies around 150 km away from Kathmandu. Kalinchowk offers a combination of rich cultural heritage, unsurpassable beauty and biological diversity unparalled. Located in northeast of Kathmandu, it also has a beautiful panoramic view of the Himalayas.
On 2nd March, I reached the office premises at 6:15 am. Slowly everyone reached the office and we packed up ready to go. I could see the excitement in everyone’s faces. Manish was so excited that he forgot that he had not had any breakfast.
Excitement grew stronger as Kedar drove the van and accelerated along the way. We had our breakfast at Zero Kilo. After taking a little rest we continued on to our destination with fun and entertainment never ceasing throughout the trip. We stopped at Mude for lunch. The greenery and the hills, especially Laliguras, were beautiful beyond words could explain.
Finally we reached Charikot and took another van from there to Gairi. From there on we started hiking. I got tired soon as I was not used to such tough walks; Bhoj gave me a stick to ease the march ahead. The steep hills, chilly cold weather and the snow were awesome; it made me forget how tired I was. When we saw the snow, all hell broke loose with a “snow war”. Manish couldn’t control his excitement; he started comparing the place to Switzerland. Suddenly the climate changed and it got colder calming the excitement that was. We got to our hotel, got refreshed and sat around the fire cracking jokes. We had our dinner around 7:30 pm.
Next day, we woke up at 5 am and had tea at around 6 am before visiting the Kalinchowk Temple. It was my first high altitude hike and I was having breathing problem; but I persevered as my will to reach the destination was stronger than the challenges I faced. The adage ‘Dar ke aagee jeet hai’ kept playing in my mind throughout the way. Everyone was impressed with my effort when I finally reached Kalinchowk Temple.
Shiba Bahadur Kunwar
It was the most awaited moment in my life. The long hectic schedule of the office had got me weary. I needed a change and so did my colleagues. We, the 16 members of the data team, were ready for a trip to Kalinchowk.
The journey was as much fun as when reaching the destination. We lost track of time; it was already 1 pm when we got to Charikot. The 2nd session was the journey from Gaire on foot, and enjoying the scenery around we reached Kuri. It was snowing in Kuri when we got there. The whole environment was covered in quilt of snow.
It was already late evening when we got to our lodge. The delicious dinner we were served was memorable; the taste still lingers in my mind. After a good night sleep we were ready for the next day’s challenge. With rejuvenated zeal and passion for our final destination, Kalinchowk Bhagwati, we headed off. There we enjoyed different snow capped mountains and bathed in the early morning rays.
It was time to return. Dolakha Bhimshen Temple was our final stop before heading back to the Kathmandu. I had a great time and am filled with new energy to tackle the challenges that awaits me in the city.