World of Excitement

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Bali Pass

By Abhijit Chatterjee

Nature makes us bewildered, sometimes with its beauty sometimes with its destruction. This time we start with its calamity and end with its elegance.

The date of our starting Aila (a severe storm) dashes on the large part of  West Bengal and makes our initial schedule a hodgepodge. Somehow we manage to come out from this situation and start for.

Like earlier expedition after reaching Dehradoon we gather our ration and move towards Sankri. There we meet Mr. Chan Sing who is just ready with five porters and an experienced guide Mr. Chandan Sing to help us in this case.

1st day

Sankari is the gateway of a lot of famous routes. To stay hare one can avail new hotels or banglo of G.M.V.N.  In the early morning we take a rented car which takes 40-45 min to reach Taluka (6232ft). A cup of tea at Taluka refreshes and stimulates us to discover the treasure of nature and we start for our trek . . . . . destination Seema. While coming up we take a narrow street keeping the stream named Har Ki Doon Nala our left side and picturesque beauty of Taluka. After walking for few minutes we get two ways to go to Seema. One up ward tough route through Datamir, another keeping Har Ki Doon (stream) left side. We take the second one. This way gradually goes towards a forest and Har Ki Doon Nala also gradually goes towards downward with a melodious sound. Now a day this way has become perfectly plain and even with cement custing. Like a landscape Ganger village appears another side of the river. Within dazzle we reach Seema (8200ft.) at  3.00 pm .

2nd day

It is raining today but it is unable to resist us from being lustful towards the grace of nature. From Seema the way which has crossed Har Ki Doon Nala ultimately has gone to the Har Ki Doon valley. Har Ki Doon (stream) is still with us in the left.  With our starting for this day we face a huge waterfall..By crossing a bridge made over the tank made by the tank we reach a vast charming green valley named Debasu Bugiyal. Here pine trees appear as the guards of the valley. Though we enchanted with the serene beauty of valley we do not stop our steps and meet with Ruisara Gud, turning to left. We crossed Ruisara Gud keeping it to the right side. Nagging rain stops us before 2 km of our todays destination.


3rd day

Today is our rest day. Nature has appeared before us in a spick and span apparel with a perfect combination. WE start for Ruisara Tal (12,500 ft.approx.)which is just 2 km away from our camping side at  8.30am . Chandan Sings information about the charming elegance of this particular area haunts my mind and gives it a true shape when nature gradually unveils its beauty. Azure sky, Bandarpuchcha mountain range, designs created by different colored flower on green                                                              grass, Vuj trees creates a world of magic. Enjoying this majestic ambience we return at  2.00pm .

4th day

We put our camp side of the temporary bridge on the river. If we would not get the bridge we have to go the area where river is wide. We cross the river with the help of rope one by one with a great trick. With a charming weather we start at  8.00pm keeping Ruisara Gud left. Suddenly we meet with a landslip for the first time in this journey. Stepping consciously we cross it. In the mean time nature has fascinated us again with the view of Bandarcuchcha mountain range, Ruisara Gud, the particular river beside us, Swargorohini -2. We crossed the stream for the last time and walk towards a mound. End of the valley there is a cascade having a strong current. This is Bali Khal. Our final destination is its source Balipass area. Following by a ridge we start. All of a sudden we are surrounded by rain but it does not able to stop us to reach Odari Camp ( 14500 ft.approx). Before sunset we take shelter in the ten for the rest part of the day.

5th day

It was pouring from last night yet the morning is coruscating beautifully. Foot of   Bali  Pass  is covered with ice so we take the decision to reach there as quick as possible. We cross the first up ward route within 40 min and reach in the front of a ridge. The slope is absolutely covered with ice and on which we start walking on it though the route has become tougher. Some members make the way clean with ice axe and we make a queue while following their footsteps.  We come to vast valley of ice and move towards right we reach foot of Balipass. Soothing warmth of sunray makes our journey just dream. Earlier we decide we took decision to stay her but this time we decide to move forward. Now we have to cross a bare land of ice where we can not estimate the distance, only can get the glance of team members far away. Then again up ward walking, but this time body tries to betray us by making it tired and thirsty, but there is no time in our hand so we force ourselves to move. The eagerness in mind for adventure wields us moving towards right side slightly to conquer all the difficulties of the route.

We reach our destination at  12 noon . The top of the pass (16039 ft.) is too much dangerous, because the opposite slope is in angel of about 80 to 85 degree.  Comparatively the weather of  Jamuna  Valley which is opposite side of Balipass is worse than   Baspa  Valley  . The sky is being pervaded the black sky and it seems that it is coming towards us. We take a ridge which is in the left side and reach to top and now we have to take the down ward way. Putting the large bolder aside and walk is a dangerous task. Second step is more dangerous because here melted-ice mixed with soil has made the way slippery.  We follow the steps made by the ice-axe. In the last phase there is the way made off slate stone, and walking on it we meet with upper Damini camping side at  4 pm .

6th day

Last day cloud shed a curtain on the beauty of this particular place. Todays clean weather represents surroundings with a magical spell. This is the last day of our expedition. After taking break fast we start. Initially we meet a small part of icy-way but rest part is ice free grassy. After few minuets we face a difficult down ward movement of about 500ft. The way was too risky that we tie rope on our west and one by one climb down and get a way of about 6ft width. In the Damini forest we take rest for few times with a joyous mood and lastly get the route to Jamunetri. At last we put an end to the journey by reaching Jankichati.