Valley of Flowers

By Sanjeev Nayyar | 2001

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The Valley is in Uttranchal`s Garwhal district. To reach the Valley of Flowers you need drive from Rishikesh to Badrinath and app an hour before that get off at Govindghat. Spend the night here and prepare yourself for a 13 kms trek to the base camp ie Ghagria. What you see are two very helpful Pahadi boys with Govindghat in the background.

This is one of the most beautiful, amazing and tough 13 kms treks I have done. The trek to Kedarnath too is similar and super.

Most of the route you see lush green hills with some landslides thrown in.

This is the base camp Ghagria. From here you can go to holy Hemkund Sahib or the Valley of Flowers. With my Punjabi looks, beard and kada a number of my Sikh brothers seemed offended when they saw me turning left to the Valley of Flowers as if saying how can a Sardar not go to Hemkund. How was I to tell them that I had been there way back in 1989.

The trek from Ghagria to the Valley of Flowers is a short one but difficult because there is no pucca route, at places an old route ceases to exist because of landslides. So you need to be a bit brave and have very good footwear to get a grasp of the soil below. What you see is a water pipe, mountains on either side & the Valley in between. Good time to start trek is 5 a.m.

Welcome to the Valley of Flowers - best time to visit end July and August. The Valley is app 15-20 kms long, you can just walk & walk.

An overview of the Valley. Early morning sunshine with snow clad mountains behind. You can trek through the Valley to Badrinath. I went in July beginning so app 40 % blossoming.

Another view of the Valley. From far it looks like a green belt but you can see the flowers when you get closer.

Another view of the Valley. From far it looks like a green belt but you can see the flowers when you get closer.

A closer look at the plants.

Pic of some flowers. Sorry do not know names.

This innocuous looking stream had me in a fix for a moment. How was I to cross it? I was a man possessed when I entered the Valley. I walked as if there was no tomorrow. According to fellow traveler Jayant I might have spent close to three hours walking in the Valley.

Pictures of flowers.

Pictures of flowers.

Pictures of flowers.

Pictures of flowers.

This picture was clicked from Ghagria the base point. Local boys told us that the Badrinath highway or Govindghat was at the base of the last hill in the picture. Some think going downhill is easier than climbing up. Believe me the former is tougher because downward slope naturally pushes you down. To control speed puts additional pressure on the knees. I ran down non-stop to complete it in three hours. When I reached Govindghat was exhausted and had a body massage thereafter. Friend Jayant took a horse ride and vowed never to do so again.

Fan Kamal Flower

Buransh grows about 6000 feet

Brahma Kamal

Mountains, clouds, water is what you see. The Valley of Flowers is very beautiful, a must see once in a lifetime

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