Soon after we decided to have an ‘All girls trip’ (Yay!), the tickets were booked and the next thing I know, I was on the train to Pathankot! From there, we booked a cab which took us to Mcleodganj (our hotel staff helped us out with arranging the cab) at the cost of INR 2000. The journey of those two and a half hours through the winding roads amidst the hills until we reached Mcleodganj would definitely soothe your senses and eliminate any exhaustion.
By the time we reached our hotel, Pink House, we were quite pepped up to explore more of Himachal beauty. We took a quick shower and decided to have Lunch on our way to BhagsuNag waterfall. The hotel staff told us about a few cafes to visit, one of them being the Illiterati Cafe and also offered us to hire a cab from there itself. The cab though was a tad too expensive!
Since the staff said the Illiterati Cafe is not very far away, we decided to walk down to the place which lay on the way to Dharamshala. Illiterati was simply a treat for four hungry souls! It was way more than what we had expected, the ideal place where you’d dream your Sundays to be, sipping coffee listening to nice music, reading your favorite book, having a panoramic view of the Dhauladhar mountains and gorging on the yummiest food! This is a must when in Mcleodganj.
Soon after gobbling the last bite of those mouth-watering Belgian waffles, we took a cab from the cafe to BhagsuNag waterfall. The cab stopped us at BhagsuNag Temple and from there we followed the path which led us to the waterfall. The landscapes along the way are breathtakingly beautiful. Now here is a mixed experience. From what I heard, it was supposed to be a mystical waterfall but what we saw was an almost dead one. The water level was just ankle-high but the good part was that since it was February the water temperature was so cold, that within 3 seconds of us putting our feet inside the water, we felt the numbness taking over our immersed feet, melting our entire tiredness away.
We spent the evening roaming around in the main city, eating momos, sipping thukpa and then having a nice dinner at Mcllo situated right in the centre of the main chowk. We decided to call it a night soon since the next day was already planned for Triund Trek.
Next day, soon after the breakfast, we left to climb atop the famous Triund hill with an accompanying guide.
The trek is 6 kms long. Step by step we moved ahead taking intervals at Chai corners along the mountain. Carry water bottles and chocolate bars for instant energy. We went in the month of February, the fog was adding on to the beauty of the mountains and the breath of fresh air was so beyond refreshing.
That’s the thing with mountains, its strength motivates you to just keep moving ahead. I enjoyed trekking all the way to the top and sinking in the unbeatable cold temperature.
Out hotel arranged a tent and dinner for us to stay for the night. We didn’t expect to see the snow covered mountains, but we did spot a few.
First thing that we did after reaching was to eat Maggi (which is quite expensive. A plate of Maggi would cost you 90 bucks but it was worth it)
We already knew that it’s gonna be cold out there but had no idea that even 4 layers of clothes won’t be enough. Make sure you carry warm socks, hand gloves and a warm cap as essentials. The night we were there, the temperature went down to -10 degrees! Not even alcohol helped us in surviving. We spent the night singing songs by the bonfire and interacting with fellow travelers.
Also, there is no washroom at the top so be prepared to go behind the rocks. My urge to pee at 5 in the morning because of cold nearly froze me to death but it was compensated by the view- so many stars and just snow covered mountains! Sometimes, shivering ain’t that bad.
No matter how much I tried, I couldn’t sleep. My other three friends and I were up at 6 and then we waited for the breath-taking sunrise. Sipping chai while feeling the warm sunlight slowly covering over the entire area was a different feeling altogether.
Soon after that, we started on our way back. In comparison to going up, it was way quicker and easier to climb down. Careful though, be mindful of the rocks!
Those two days in Mcleodganj were surreal and it would have been incomplete without the trek to Triund. I am glad we decided to stay there for a night.
McLeod Ganj, Dharamshala and Triund must be on the list of every lover of hills. Take a weekend off and go flirt with the high views. Bear that unbearable cold, fill your eyes with incredible scenes, challenge yourself, laugh with your friends or just take it all in solo. The lofty hills will lift your mood and remind us how tiny we are as compared to this marvelous nature. That’s the beauty of it!