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Day 2: Trek from Gulling to Khulara via Chitrakatha

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Trek date during WINTER TREK to PANGARCHULLA PEAK via KUARI PASS: 29th December 2015 (Tuesday)

Trek distance: Around 7 to 8 Kms.

Time taken: Around 5 hours.

Difficulty level: Easy to Moderate

Highlights during the trek:

  1. Chitrakatha camp-site which can be used as alternative camp-site.
  2. Small streams en-route which can be used to store drinking water during the trek.
  3. Dense forest with Pine and other type of himalayan trees.
  4. Trails full of snow.
  5. Slippery trails with snow turned into icy fields at some patches.
  6. Welcome drink by local guide Puran Sirji at Khulara camp-site.
  7. Reaching main camp-site of the winter trek Khulara and pitching tent on snow.
  8. Magnificent views of Mt. Neelkanth, Mt. Dronagiri and many other mountains from Khulara camp-site.
  9. Evening walk to collect woods for camp-fire around camp-site.
  10. Big, Beautiful and open space of Khulara meadows.

Challenges: Trek inside dense forest on snowy trails makes day bit challenging one.

Altitude Meter: Please find altitude details for the day below:

  • Beautiful Chitrakatha camp-site comes around 1890 Mtr.
  • Khulara meadows comes around 2896 Mtr.

Day in brief:

Main agenda of 2nd day was to reach main camp-site of winter trek Khulara so we can start early on 3rd day morning towards Pangarchulla Peak. All of us got up around 7:00 AM and freshen-up. Trek crew aka cooks of the trek Birendar Singh Rana and team prepared Poori & Bhaji for the breakfast. Had breakfast and packed our luggages, tents.

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Chilly morning with camp-fire
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Breathtaking view of mountains during Golden hour – Gulling camp-site
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Mt. Dronagiri at its best during Golden hour!!!
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Maa Nanda Devi all set to change its beauty during Golden hour
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Maa Nanda Devi during Golden hour – Gulling camp-site
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Beautiful morning at Gulling camp-site
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Team having breakfast at Gulling camp-site
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S Sidd with team – All set for 2nd day hike to Khulara
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Gulling camp-site seems to be empty empty after packing of luggages!

Started our journey towards next camp-site Khulara around 9:00 AM. It was 200 meters of continuous steep ascent at initial phase of the day made our journey tiring one. Small streams can be witnessed inside the dense forest which can be used to store drinking water. After walk inside dense forest followed by small ascent will take us to Chitrakatha camp-site. It can be used as camp-site, if you are attempting Kuari Pass only and would like to stretch trek for a day.

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Hike towards Khulara started at 9:00 AM
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Continuous steep ascent on dry land of Nanda Devi National Park, Uttarakhand.
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Dense forest before nearing Chitrakatha camp-site
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Open land before dense forest
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Achintya & Mahipal enjoying the stretch
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Small streams all the way before Chitrakatha camp-site
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A walk to remember – Approaching Chitrakatha camp-site
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A walk + hike inside dense forest
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Crossing streams is common sight of the day!
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Nearing Chitrakatha camp-site
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Beautiful Chitrakatha camp-site
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Teena & S Sanny at Chitrakatha camp-site

Relaxed for 15 minutes and took many group pics along with group selfies at Chitrakatha camp-site. Continued our journey towards Khulara camp-site.

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Selfie time! – A magical selfie indeed 🙂
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Group pics & Selfie-galore at Chitrakatha camp-site

Note: If you take left at Chitrakantha camp-site, it will take you to Khulara camp-site and right will take to Tali camp-site.

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Started towards Khulara after taking left at Chitrakatha camp-site

We took left and moved towards Khulara camp-site. It was bit lengthy stretch then till Chitrakatha camp-site from Gulling. Dense forest with trails full of snow made our trek to Khulara adventurous one!!! It was completely new trail as per our guide Dev Singh and never attempted before by any group to reach Khulara. We made our own trails on snow and reached Khulara camp-site around 2:00 PM.

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Streams, Snow & Slippery trails everywhere
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Amazing experience indeed!
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Dev & Mahipal Sirji helping Teena to hike tough part of the trek
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As usual experimenting with my Nikon D3100
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Some artist from our group did this! I captured it 😛
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Amazing stretch indeed!

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Wat a pic! Loving it 🙂
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Nature at its Best!!!
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All i can say Magical place – Classic!!!
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Kavitha in posing mode while nearing heavenly Khulara…
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There you go, Khulara camp-site. Puran Sirji waiting with Welcome drink…

Local guide Puran Sirji welcomed us with welcome drink Rooh afza at Khulara camp-site. Had veg biryani for lunch. All of us pitched our tents on snowy field of Khulara.

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Experimenting with Cup continues!
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Sipping welcome drink at Khulara camp-site
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Having veg biryani inside the tent
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Magical mighty mountains from Khulara camp-site
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Breathtaking view of Khulara
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Our camp-site is one of them at Khulara with other groups – 3 to 4 groups already pitched tents along with us
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Famous Hathi (Elephant) and Ghori (Horse) Parbat of Nanda Devi National Park, Uttarakhand
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Close-up view of Mt.Dronagiri from Khulara

At 4:00 PM, started walk towards forest to collect woods for camp-fire. Returned with woods and had camp-fire at camp-site.

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A evening walk to collect wood for camp-fire
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Team at camp-fire – Trying to handle Damn cold weather of Khulara!

Had soup followed by dinner and rested for the day around 8:00 PM. Guide suggested us to have early sleep so we can start 3rd day early in the morning around 7:00 AM. It will help us to reach Pangarchulla summit before the noon.

Note: We will not encounter any remote villages during the 2nd days trek.

Camp-site:

Khulara camp-site is used as base camp-site for our trek to Pangarchulla Peak and it was near by Kuari Pass which is nearly 2 Kms. from camp-site. Camp-site is Big and Beautiful. It offers magnificent views of Mt. Neelkanth, Mt. Dronagiri, Hathi & Ghori Parbat, many other mountains of Nanda Devi National Park, Uttarakhand.

Temperature: Dipped to Max -10 degree Celsius at night.

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Main camp-site of winter trek – Heavenly Khulara
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