Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Enroute to Gangotri - Gangnani

Day 2 Uttarkashi-GANGNANI-Gangotri-Bhaironghati-Harsil-Bhatwari-Uttarkashi

Part I (Gangnani)

As instructed by our driver Vishwanath the previous day, we left Uttarkashi at about 5 am. It was very difficult to get out of the comfort of the multiple blankets that early in such chilly weather and I was virtually shivering. The only thing going for us was that we were to leave without taking a bath.

It was pitch dark when we started our journey. I could only see a faint outline of the River Ganga (known as Bhagirathi till it joins the Alaknanda at Dev Prayag) but from the roaring sound that was almost reverberating in the stillness of the morning, I knew it was very much there.

River Bhaghirathi at Maneri, 10 km from Uttarkashi
First sighting of the River Bhagirathi at Maneri, about 10 km from Uttarkashi…
Sorry for the shivering hands!

About 2 hours later we reached Gangnani which is situated around 43 km from Uttarkashi, our first stop en route to Gangotri. Now 43 kms doesn’t sound much to people like us from the plains but with the never ending serpentine roads which are broken and shattered in patches, the average speed just about comes to 20-30 km/hour. This is why it takes time to reach places and it is always good to leave early and have spare time on your hands.

Gangnani, also known as Rishikund tirth, is the place where devotees generally prefer to bathe in a hot water thermal spring before moving on towards Gangotri. There are separate kunds (bathing tanks/pools) for both men and women. I was expecting at least some people, if not a crowd as it was off season, but to my surprise there was not a single person in the kund.

The hot water spring at Gangnani - Enroute to Gangotri
Wow, I thought… Hot thermal spring all for myself… 
My very own personal hot water pool!

A dip in the hot water kund and all the cold and shivers miraculously vanished away. It was such a relief… sheer bliss… I could have spent an entire day in there!

The Sage Parashar Temple at Gangnani - Enroute to 
Gangotri
The hot water kund at Gangnani, 
The stairs on the left take you to the sage Parashar Temple

The Sage Parashar Temple at Gangnani - Enroute to 
Gangotri
The Sage Parashar Temple at Gangnani

Completely refreshed and energized, we visited the temple of Sage Parashar – father of Ved Vyas (the writer of the epic Mahabharata) situated near the kund.

Gangnani Beautiful Himalayas - Enroute to Gangotri
We catch the sight of the the early rays of dawn lighting up 
the spectacular pea-green patchwork blanket of nature just as we leave…

Our Travel Route Map for the Day
Uttarkashi - Gangotri - Uttarkashi
(Click on the image to enlarge)

      - Our travel route for the Day 2 

      - Halts en route to Gangotri and back

Previous posts from this trip -


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56 comments:

  1. Arti, thanks for commenting on my blog. Your travels to spiritual places in India are very well written. I feel like I am there with you!

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  2. Looks like a great trip, Arti! Always enjoy your posts and photos! I'd like to climb in that tub right now!! Hope you have a lovely evening!

    Sylvia

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  3. You have been travelling all over india thats wondeful..

    hope you visit south too..there are lot places to visit


    http://womensera2008.blogspot.com/2011/03/event-announcement-c-for-colourful.html

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  4. Lovely clicks......the hot water pool looks so inviting......wish i could make this trip sometime!!

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  5. I loved reading this post: it's so wonderful to know what people all over the world are getting up to! Safe travels on the next part of your journey...

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  6. Would like a bath in that hot water now - hmmmm, sound so good!

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  7. Oh dear sweet friend! Thank you for your visit and kind words! How fun to have friends around the WORLD!!! BISOUS, Anita

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  8. What a treat after your two hour trip to sit in the the thermal spring, and a private session!! Do you feel healthier? The pictures are rather spooky, mysterious blue.

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  9. Wow that is so amazing that a place so clean n pure exists..almost hurt to think we live in such polluted cities..great post!


    US Masala

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  10. The thermal bath looks incredibly inviting.

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  11. Thank you for visiting me...your blog is lovely and what a beautiful area you are in. xoxo Enjoy

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  12. so nice to see no crowds in such places!

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  13. Woww... Ganga!! :) The word itself will b beautiful.. nd d place too!! :)

    Thermal bath.. :D loved d pic :)

    Good going.. arti .. :) nice info :)

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  14. lovely Post, I had visited this place long back with my family, memories came back...lovely Pictures as well:)

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  15. I bet that hot thermal spring was such a relief after such a cold start. Thank you for yet another amazing journey.

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  16. Very interesting and informative. The pic of dawn breaking over the peaks is the best of the lot. waiting for more :)

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  17. very well written. pictures amazing.

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  18. Wonderful & informative as usual Arti!

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  19. What an amazing experience to have a hot water kund all to yourself! It sounds like it was worth waking up so early!

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  20. That thermal spring does look blissful!

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  21. hot thermal springs..WOW! i'm so jealous of u:)
    i'm happy to stumble across ur blog...definitely one written with a lot of heart. felt like i'm listening to a friend who's just back from a vacation n telling me all about it!!

    ~ Vinaya

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  22. I threw the Arti notes in the big giveaway hat, fingers crossed!

    Have a happy Friday and a loveliest of weekends xx

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  23. thermal springs... new to me... they look wonderful with hot steam around the place... expecting the next post...

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  24. Nice pictures with well narration.

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  25. The last pic. is very beautiful.
    I have seen hot water springs at Badri and Kedar Gouri kund.
    I love reading your posts on Himalayan journey .I haven't been to Gangotri and Yamunotri and do not think I would make it. I will be happy with this virtual tour. Thanks a lot Arti, you are doing great service.

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  26. What wonderful photos Arti! Thanks for making this divine Yatra sitting in the home.

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  27. Your posts make one want to visit those divine places. Such is your narration.
    By the way, I hear that medical clearance is a pre-requisite for this journey. Is it true?

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  28. First impression on your blog - wow!:) It may not relate to your recent post but hey I just discovered you so... hehehe Keep up what you're doing cause you're doing great!:)

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  29. Arti,
    Welcome Arti,
    I love to have visitors from as far away.
    I have a language translator that may not have seen the end of the page.
    I'll translate in English on my blog and take the opportunity to meet you.

    The poem by Miquel Marti i Pol, said:
    "Size vidre l'air the diamond
    of your look.
    Everything is brief
    behind the curtain that separates me
    of the afternoon
    and die in the middle of a large
    silence.
    When we meet again, all
    the quiet will be landscape,
    and desigs stronghold and hopes.
    have you a nice day.

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  30. Hi Arti, I enjoyed this early-morning trip with you! The deserted hot springs look a bit eerie in that morning light. I love the step photo - so many layers to see. Thanks for the tour - your description is wonderful.

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  31. BeautifulWorkThankYouForSharing:)

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  32. Hi, Arti. I was reading your blog hoping the stories will not end really soon. You write so well that I cant help but reread your entries.

    Wonderful story again. Have a great week ahead, my friend.

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  33. Thank you very much for your visit. I've never been to India. However, after seeing your blog, it makes me want to go.

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  34. Arti, I know how you felt relieved to have submerged yourself into geothermal hot water after a cold, strenuous walks.

    In the last photo, the peaks of the mountain is reflected in the sunlight, while other is still blanketed in the dark. Looks symbolical.

    Thank you for commenting on my blog.

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  35. Artiii...... U r juz roking the India..
    Wow !! One mor wondrful post frm u :)
    Njyed..

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  36. I do not know how you found my blog, but you did and left a comment, for which I thank you, and also this way I came to your blog and looked at your pretty pictures.
    It must have been exciting for you to visit the Temple of Sage Parashar. Years ago I went to a show while in Jakarta to watch the epic of the Mahabharata. The costumes were outstanding and the music extraordinary – of course it was in Indonesian and I could not understand the words. Thanks again for coming to my blog.

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  37. Hi Arti. I'm a little behind on my reading and I know I'll be reading your travelogue backwards as I catch up. But just have to comment here on the "hot tub". I would have had trouble getting out of that on a chilly day. But I do love the tradition of being shiny clean and rested before visiting the Holy Place.

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  38. @ Rajuda
    Medical clearance is not required at least for Gangotri, Badrinath and Kedarnath... I am not aware of Yumunotri though...
    I think medical clearances are required for the Kailash Mansarover Yatra...

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  39. It pleases me to hear that my words have conveyed my meaning. I appreciate your visit and your kind comments are generous. Thank you for sharing your travels...Your photos and script are a pleasure to view, so full of expression.


    ♥ ஆεlεɳa ~.^

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  40. I visited hot water springs in Mainkaran (near Manali), but they were very crowded, so did not take a dip, but this one seemed like a jaccuzi if you like !! Good one..

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  41. Uttarkashi wow. such an amazing place. Lovely pics as well! :)

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  42. Wonderful trip. I would also like to take a dip in thermal springs.

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  43. wonderful place , thanks for the map...:)

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  44. My only experience so far in hot water spring was in a temple in HP where there was a hot spring pond and we had a dip in it :)

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  45. It is very interesting. It seems to be very peaceful location.

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  46. wta sight :O amazinn captures :D

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  47. I never knew we had hot water springs in India. I used to really enjoy them when I stayed in Japan. Loved the beautiful picture. You have a talent to capture the right pictures. You have such a nice travelogue. But I am not getting time to read through all of them at one go. Probably will do so when things ease out at office.

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  48. it is a nice experience by going through your blog...

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  49. Hi Arti, very nice blog. I am planning to visit Gangotri area. Can you please suggest some contacts that you hired for your trip? Thanks.

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  50. @Anonymous

    Thank you very much for the appreciation.

    I had done all my travel arrangements through GMVN Ltd, all of which details you can find in this post -

    Planning the Char Dham Yatra – Accomodation, Travel Route map and itenary.


    If you need any other help, request you to please be a bit more specific so that I would be able to help with it better.

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  51. You ought to enjoy to the fullest when you're surrounded by such beautiful mountains and gently flowing rivers, loved the pics and the post as well.

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  52. GANGNANI IS REALLY A HEAVENLY ABODE...AND ESPECIALLY IF YOU VISIT IT DURING THE MONTHS OF JANUARY....I JUST CAME BACK ON THE 26TH OF JAN 2013, AFTER A SOLITARY STAY AND HOURS OF BATHING IN THE "GARAM KUND"FOR FIVE DAYS THERE.....WITHOUT ELECTRICITY AND PROPER FOOD AND LOTS OF SNOWFALL WITH A TEMPERATURE AS LOW AS -9 AT NIGHT....BUT IT GAVE MY HUSBAND AND ME EVERYTHING THAT WE DESIRED FROM THE HIMALAYAS.....

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  53. Nice post. Thins like automated hot water at such places never fails to intrigue me and to imagine the greatness of Divine which is beyond Modern day science.

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Delighted u stopped by... Your suggestions, feedback are really appreciated. Thanks a lot! Hope you visit again!

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