By Gargi M | 2003

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Before we started our trip to Gangotri we attended a Havan at the Parmarth Ghat on the banks of the Holy Ganga, Risikesh.

A side view of Havan.

Kashi Viswanath Temple at Uttarkashi. Kashi means light, is the original name for the city Banaras. Most piligrims halt on their way to Gangotri. I remember it for super vegetarian food that we had there.

Shakti Sthamb (pole) Uttarkashi outside the Kashi Vishwanath temple. Local saying goes no one knows what material the pole is made out of and how deep it goes. The amazing part of this Sthamb is if you use your might to shake it does not move. However, when touched with Shraddha (faith) it moves.

Here is an Indian lady bathing in the hot water spring at Gangnani, enroute to Gangotri.

Gangotri is situated at the confluence of the rivers, Kedar Ganga & Bhagirathi Ganga. According to legend, Gangotri is the place where Goddess Ganga descended on earth as a reward for King Bhagirathi s severe penance. The source of the river is at Gaumukh

An overview of Gangotri town. There are many small hotels where you can stay. Do remember to see the waterfalls there and take a dip in the holy Ganga

Puja (prayer) on the banks of the Ganga.

From Gangotri Gaumukh glacier (from where the Holy Ganga starts) is a 19 km trek. Tough & dangerous. But if you have ankle high shoes, are sensible and stick to the trek path you will reach safely. Friends we had a great trek, to your right was the Ganga,

Bhagirathi Peaks in front with a stream in the center. In between somewhere is a trekking path.

Mountain goats on the way to Gangotri.

Beware of getting injured. On the top of the hillock is a mountain goat (you cannot see). What the goat does is to push the rock below, which could then fall on yatris (pilgrims) going to Gaumukh.

What you see is an overview Bhojbhasa 3,792 mts (16 kms from Gangotri) is where we stayed and is the base camp for going to Tapovan. On the extreme left of the picture are Garwhal Mandal Vikas Nigam (local tourist authority) guest houses.

This is the Gaumukh Glacier, 3942 meters is a 19 kms trek from Gangotri.

On the left side of the picture at the extreme lower end in the cave depicting the mouth of the cow. Symbolically the glacier is called Gaumukh meaning Gau is cow and mukh is mouth, so translated as mouth of the cow.

Hemantbhai on the trek to Tapovan (6 kms from Gaumukh glacier) with the Shivling peak in the background. Friends if you go to Gaumukh you must visit Tapovan. Please take a guide, climb over the Gaumukh glacier to reach Tapovan. Is tough but the beauty of Tapovan, color of the sky would make it worth the effort. When I reached Tapovan I felt as if I had reached swarg (heaven). From here you can take a twelve-day trek to Kedarnath.

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