Exploring Manali, Solang, Tosh & Kheer Ganga Everything in Just 4 Days

I do not know whether I should be happy or regretful that I finally mustered the strength to pen down my blog and edit this long due post a...

I do not know whether I should be happy or regretful that I finally mustered the strength to pen down my blog and edit this long due post and video of my Kheer Ganga trek (almost 6 months, sobs😢). This happened because I was focusing on the video, and editing a video is a gigantic task!

So without digressing much, I will head straight to the topic:

The trip began on Wednesday. It was going to be a long weekend holiday because it was Diwali time. There was a pang of guilt inside me that this Diwali, I was not going home, my grandmother would be alone at home, without me. But I was keen to go to Spiti this time.

Wait..wait..wait wasn't this post about Kheer Ganga? You must be wondering right now!

The thing is my brother & I was eager to visit Spiti anyhow. Now that we had 4 days off from our offices, we could have easily taken 1 or 2 days further off and tick Spiti off the bucket list✅ But destiny had its own plans.
On Wednesday night, we boarded our HRTC bus. I really recommend the govt. volvo buses whenever you are traveling to the mountains. They are the most comfortable and are on time always.

Day 1 (Manali Day):

Let's begin THE PHOTOGRAPHIC JOURNEY TO THE HIMACHAL...


Welcome to Manali!

We got down at Manali bus stand. I cannot explain how the breath of fresh cold air captivated me for a few seconds only to be ruined by the shrilling noise of buses, unruly taxis, and their drivers. The mismanagement was clearly visible.

A proper set up is needed where buses, autos, and taxis can stand separately along with the installation of dustbins every 100 meters because it is one of the busiest bus stands in the Himachal Pradesh.
We inquired about the mode of transport to Spiti. Buses were shut down on that route because snowfall was expected during that time. And taxis were charging freaking 12,000/- for one side.

So we had to skip it! Now I was like "Isse acha to main ghar hi chali jati Diwali pe". I was feeling more guilty with every passing moment while seeing people coming to their home for the festival. Then I thought, "Ab kuch nahi ho sakta ta".

We walked to the Manali motors shop to hire a scooter. and did get one. But while doing some research I found that the best shop in Manali to hire bikes is EPIC BIKES. (Call Karan 8894777300).
We glided through the roads of old Manali and Solang for the whole day on our scooter.

Solang, Yak, and Hadimba

And with that, Day 1 ended only after a long stroll in the market where you can buy a souvenir or two and enjoy delicious food while enjoying flavors of "pahadi" culture all around.

Exploring streets of Manali

At night we went out again to a nearby cafe to celebrate Diwali.

Happy Diwali!

To explore how to have fun while in Manali: 10 Things You Can Do Nearby Manali

Do not miss out on Hadimba Temple, stopping by at roadside waterfalls (some of them will surprise you!), paragliding (for the adventure sports lover, there are many other activities at Solang valley) and pictures with the yak.

They were cute.

So it was Manali exploration for day 1, where we covered all the nearby tourist spots on our scooter, enjoyed some "golgappas" in the old Manali market(good for an evening stroll) and then celebrated Diwali.

Day 2 (Let's go to Tosh):

The next day started with a journey. We were supposed to leave Manali for Tosh. On our way, we were to pass through the "smokey" town Kasol and the "hot springs" of Manikarnan. We were ready!

Bhai looking for the bus.

Bummer!

Well, it didn't go as planned. For the whole day, we were hopping from one bus to another.

First, we boarded a bus from Manali to Manikaran. From there we took a local bus to Barshaini. From Barshaini, you can either walk up to Tosh or take a taxi costing about Rs. 100 per head (we took the taxi, of course) because we wanted to reach there before it got dark.

Milestone 'Tosh' achieved

And finally, by around 5 in the evening, we reached Tosh. It drizzled that night and past midnight we were welcomed by a sky full of constellations. Strange no! one moment cloudy, another moment clear night. You may think it is all so exhausting, we are picking our bags every morning and heading for a new journey. But apart from the time crunch that we 9-5 job people have, this was our plan. We were mentally prepared. We wanted to explore every place in whatever time we had. Yes, it does at times wants you to get up early but it is actually fun. You get so many memories with you. I do both sorts of travels which involve all day explorations and full day chilling. Believe me, both have perks of their own.

Spent the night in a very trippy cafe of Tosh, or that's what I thought until morning. Morning sprinkled a different light on it.
My Budgeted room with an awesome view
The hotel was Blue Diamond (Cost - Rs 400 per room). We did not notice how amazing the place was until this moment(morning) when the whole room was lit with the sunrise surrounded by the blue hay of the mountains.

Can Brushing get more beautiful?
You can also spend a day or two in Tosh if you want to have a relaxing holiday. Though I prefer Kalga(In the next blog ;) ) than Tosh.

Day 3 (Kheer Ganga):

Well, you got an introduction to the third day already.

View at the top
We had to walk down approx 1.5 km to the base of Kheer Ganga trek. It is a 14 km trek located at the height of 2960 m in Parvati valley. On the whole trek, you will either find snow-white, maybe that is why they call it 'Kheer Ganga', Parvati river roaring or following you. The view is magnificent enough to fulfill a traveler's lust.

Best Time To Trek: April to November

There are two ways to reach to Kheer Ganga. One through:

1. Nakthan Village-

The way we choose as we were coming from Tosh. It is less steep than the other one. The only problem is you will find ample sunshine on this path. Do not forget to pack 40+ SPF to save yourself from tanning. There is one small shop at the beginning where you can have some drinks and biscuits. Next stop is that Nakthan village only.

You will never be alone

Cute Bindi Boy
Aesthetic houses
Waterfalls on the way to Kheerganga, the view, doggies and me!

It took us 3.5 hours to reach the top. The difficulty level is easy, the only problem for the beginners will be the long distance. It definitely requires stamina and a strong will. But the trail is not steep.

Kheer Ganga Trek is full of Waterfalls. You will find Dozens of them

If you don't have water, you know what to do ;)
But the moment you will step your feet inside the hot water pool. You will forget everything, every obstacle that you faced on the trek and tiredness will just vanish away.

Temple & the ladies pool
The view is so mesmerizing, and the no.of women travelers are less as compared to men. So there are chances that you might get the whole pool all to yourself. But sitting for prolonged hours in sulfur spring can cause nausea. Sulfur-rich hot springs help treat dry scalp, arthritic pain and internal problems such as menopausal symptoms and digestive disorders. Hot springs help your body relax and reduce stress.

The second way is from:

2. Kalga Village-

It is greener and shadier. The star attraction of this route is a huge waterfall you encounter on your way. You can choose this way if staying in Kalgah.

Even at a dist of 0.5 Km from the waterfall. It was chilling
We were completely exhausted by the time we reached the top. My brother wanted the best location for our tents whereas I was like, "this one at the beginning looks fine" because I was exhausted. We got one soon though. All this time I was frantically looking for a cellular network.

Network Connectivity: An issue at times!

Only BSNL works at the top! That too not a very strong connection. But it helped. I was able to make 2-3 calls with a breaking voice. When you start the trek it is all fine, after covering distance of 7 km or so, the network vanishes.

Day 3 (The NIGHT):

The night at Kheer Ganga was a night that I will never forget. One obvious reason it was damn cold and second is scary to start with:

After we went to sleep. At about 2 in the night, the dogs started barking. Initially, it was coming from a distance, but then the barking started getting closer. We were awake now. I was thinking why isn't any local shushing them down. I tried closing my eyes and sleeping when I heard something unlocking the zip of our tent.

All of a sudden I remembered what a women told us while we were waiting for our Bus at Manikaran, she said- "Be safe, there are dayans (witches) up there". I got the shit scared. "F**k man! any animal cannot unlock the zip", I said to myself. An animal would smash on the tent side with his paws. And guess what followed? we heard a smaaaashhh!!!

My brother tried to shoo away the animal or whatever it was, with the wooden stick(we used for support while trekking) while making some annoying sounds in Kashmiri.

Oh god, it was so hilarious(now, not then). I said the animal does not understand Kashmiri say it in Hindi. And then we laughed.

I was scared because he didn't stop barking, even for a second. Literally! I was like how is he breathing because he was like bow bow bow and bow just near our tent. I, a true Hindu started chanting "Jai Hanuman gyaan gun sagar..."

I could not understand how can anyone (here incase my brother) can sleep under such circumstances. I had taken pledges in my mind- I won't trouble my parents, I will be a good girl blah, blah, and blah.

I did not sleep until dawn. The barking had faded but it was still there. It was 5AM when the sky softly glowed in the twilight. I rested a bit and finally got up at 6. When I came out of the tent, this little beauty was found outside our tent. I was talking to him, "where you one the one who didn't let me sleep" "bad boy". But maybe he was, in fact, saving others. Maybe he saw some creature entering the tent area in search of food and he was trying to scare it or let others know of the other creature's presence. All remained a mystery!

Next morning (Soul in Kasol)- 

It took us 2 hours of continuous walking and running to reach the bottom. I love downward treks!
The hardest part was to travel from the bridge to Barshaini. It was 12 noon with the Sun shining bright and no trees around. There was hydroelectric dam construction going on.

We got a bus there. It takes you to Bhunter via Kasol. The bus service is after every 1 hour.
We got down at Kasol to hop into our favourite cafe on Parvati river side and chill for 3 hours. We had late night bus from Bhuntar.

Me lost in nature, colorful Kasol market & a house in Chalal

Mystical Parvati River

I hope you enjoyed the journey. Do not forget to share your views and stories.
We would love to hear them. Till then, Keep traveling and be safe.

Hippie!
Shongruff

1 comments

  1. Good read. Thanks for such detailed information about the Kheerganga trek and how to plan the whole trip covering multiple places. Keep up the good work.

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