Lying on the southern edge of Dhauladhar range, Dharamsala becomes a starting point for many a treks into the higher parts of this mountain range. While most of those treks are usually for the regular trekkers, there are few which are perfect if you want your first trekking experience.
A trek to Triund is a wonderful way to cut yourself from the rest of the world, and enjoy the goodness of trekking in the lower Himalayas. Triund is used as a base camp for many of the high altitude trekking in Dhauladhar range, and therefore, there are quite few small shacks and a forest guest house to stay at, if you’re planning to spend a night up in the mountains.
The trek to Triund starts from Dharamkot, a small hamlet just 2 kms from Mcleodganj. As you start from Dharamkot, the metaled road suddenly gives way to a dusty pathway, which leads you higher into the mountains through a jungle; where surrounded by the pine trees, you can observe the sounds from town slowly fading away. Except for the occasional greetings from a passing monk, and chirping birds, you’re all on your own. This pathway continues to slowly rise in altitude, giving you some fine glimpses of the Kangra valley beyond, and takes you to Galu temple.
Galu temple is the first check point, around 1.5 Kms from Dharamkot, it’s the place where you can refill your water and eatables. Moreover, the moment you reach Galu temple, you can see the southern end of the Dhauladhar range, which usually isn’t possible from Mcleodganj.
A cup of tea and wonderful views of Bal and Kareri village far away is a perfect way to spend sometime resting at this first checkpoint.
After Galu, the trail gradually becomes steeper, as the view of the valley beyond Mcleodganj opens up on your right hand side while you continue with your climb towards Triund. The trail isn’t that hard in this part of the trek, and you can take some stops on the way, soaking in all the beauty stretching till far beyond in Kangra valley.
On a clear day, if you observe closely, you can spot the wide expanse of Pong Dam Reservoir adorning the horizon.
Your next checkpoint will be Magic View cafe, which was apparently set up in 1984. One of the best things to do here is to sit on the platform in front of the shop, enjoy the cool breeze, a nice sunshine and have a bowl of steaming hot maggi. During spring season, you can also find a huge number of fiery red Rhododendron flowers in this part, decorating the lush green slopes.
The part after Magic view cafe, 2nd checkpoint, is the most beautiful part of the trek. As you cross a few seasonal waterfalls, and take sharp turns where you change face of the mountains and encounter new views. During this part, if you look upwards, you’ll be able to spot the flat region of Triund. This portion of the trek is where it gets a bit tricky, there are a few slippery stones and it is steep in parts. And at the end of it lies another shop, your 3rd checkpoint, where you can rest a bit and take some refreshments, before taking on the last stretch of the trek.
The last stretch to Triund after the third checkpoint, is also the steepest part of the whole trek. Here you cross another seasonal waterfall, where you can spot some snow till the month May and after crossing it, there’s a steep climb till you reach Triund. The trail immediately gains altitude, as it passes through a dense stretch of forest. However, since it’ll be the last stretch till Triund, you can take as many breaks as you want, and then continue with your journey.
This last arduous part ends at once, as you take a turn and the whole expanse of Triund along with the mighty Dhauladhar peaks opens up in front of you. Here Mun Peak welcoming you with its intimidating structure, which rises sharply towards the sky, along with its adjoining peaks.
The most magical part of Triund is that while you’ll have the whole range in front of you, if you turn around, you’ll see Kangra valley stretching until horizon.
Once you’re at Triund, you can opt for spending a night there midst the snowy peaks and great views. You can get tents and sleeping bags from one of the three shacks there, or can also stay in the forest rest house. However, we’d recommend you to try camping under the starry sky. Plus, the shop owners have bonfires at night, where you can sit and take part in revelries along with the fellow trekkers. But don’t stay up till late, watching the stars or singing/dancing around the bonfire, because the next morning, you’ll have to be up for a majestic sunrise.
Here’s a tip, try going to the downward edge of Triund, from where you can spot the sun rising from behind the peaks, while on the other side you can watch the whole Kangra valley coming to life with the sunrise.
And once, you’re done watching the sunrise, it’ll be the time to leave for the trek down to Mcleodganj, unless you opt for another day in Triund, because according to us, there’s no such thing as ‘Too much of Triund’.
Alternatively, you can also opt for a trek to the higher parts of the range. Yes, as we told you earlier, Triund is just the base camp, and there’s a whole lot more lying further ahead from it, and we’ll be discussing it in the coming blogs.
So till then, plan a trip to Triund and enjoy your first trekking experience in the beautiful and dramatic Dhauladhar mountain range.