Sandakphu...... A Heaven beckoning.

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#1 Nov 14th, 2016, 21:12
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#1
Three in the team in the early and late 20’s, two above 50 and one above 60, have all their ordeals relieved when they stood in front of a sky full of the great Mt. Everest, the mighty Kanchanjungha and some other highest peaks of the world.

Celestial is the word and enchanted are we. Right from Nepal in the west and Arunachal in the East, the Himalaya is benign enough to stretch her arms and show all her magnanimous family members in a 270 degree stretch around the horizon.

The Sleeping Buddha with the Kanchanjungha in the middle


Mount Everest


We stay mesmerized as the sun rises slowly in the east and reddens the Mt.Everest and Lhotse in the west. The first rays of the dawn make them glitter in red and purple and orange and gold.So does the gigantic Kanchanjungha in the middle.





We bow our heads in front of the divine aura.
Jayatu Himalaye!
Last edited by Bias_Traveller; Nov 16th, 2016 at 14:40..
#2 Nov 14th, 2016, 22:30
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#2
Fabulous photos!
#3 Nov 15th, 2016, 12:45
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Thanks Kapilankar.
#4 Nov 15th, 2016, 12:50
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Enthusiasm can help human accomplish things that we seldom imagine. This was established again by my mother and mama (mother’s brother), and masi (Mother’s elder sister, she is 62.) So instead of being with a bunch of youngsters, we set out for Sandakphu rather on a family trip. Although the three younger ones of us, had ample faith on their fitness, we still arranged a landrover as a back-up in case of an emergency, never know we might need them too .

We had all our bookings done beforehand. The initial plan was like:
22nd Oct: Leave Sealdah by Darjeeling Mail.
23rd Oct: Reach NJP and take a car from NJP to Manebhanjan. Take a guide and then leave for Tonglu. Overnight at Tonglu Trekkers’ Hut.
24th Oct: Reach Kalipokhri by trekking. Night halt @Chewang Lodge.
25th Oct: Reach Sandakphu by trekking. Night Halt @GTA Trekkers’ Hut.
26th Oct: Reach Phalut by trekking. Night Halt @GTA Trekkers’ Hut.
27th Oct: Come down to Gorkhey by trekking. Night Halt @GTA Trekkers’ Hut.
28th Oct: Reach Srikhola by trekking. Night Halt @Shovraj Hotel.
29th Oct: Reach NJP by a car from Srikhola. Take Darjeeling mail to Sealdah.
30th Oct: Reach home.
It was a solid itinerary but God had some other plans for us.
It was our wisest decision to keep a landrover with us as we had to totally change the plan on spot and that wouldn't have been possible without a vehicle. But that would come later in the story.
Last edited by Bias_Traveller; Nov 16th, 2016 at 14:45..
#5 Nov 15th, 2016, 12:54
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Nice photos , Bias. Following
#6 Nov 15th, 2016, 12:54
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The journey begins

As we depart from Sealdah we are not 6, but 7 members in the team. One more aunt is there. A family of travelers never shut their mouth until the others switch off the light in their cabins. So we too rested ourselves in our berths.

Morning in a train to North Bengal brings green Paddy fields, an orange sun rising, tea gardens and Shade trees, blue mountain lines far away, and petite rivers crossing by…. All they frame a merry canvas.
At 9, we reached New Jalpaiguri. After a brief breakfast at the Jan ahaar, we hired a Spacio to Manebhanjan at INR.2300/-, which was a little too high, but we had no choice as most of the cars go to Darjeeling. Manebhanjan is a little cornered.

As we bypassed Siliguri, green became greener. Along the hairpin bends, we drove up to Mirik.

#7 Nov 15th, 2016, 12:55
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arupratan ghosh View Post Nice photos , Bias. Following
Thanks Arupratan da. Welcome to the journey.
#8 Nov 15th, 2016, 13:00
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Manebhanjan

Then leaving the Simana Basti, Pashupati market and Sukhiapokhri behind, we dropped in Manebhanjan in 3 hours. We had to arrange the landrover and guide from here. Manebhanjan had already started to draw the quilt of cloud on herself, so we quickly had our lunch in a hotel and left in search for Highlander Guide and porter welfare association, about which we had got reference from our friends. We hired a guide at INR.800/- per day and a Landrover from the landrover association at INR.7500/- for the 6 days with an additional pay of INR.1000 per night stay (INR.500/- for the first night).

The locals were saying that since this monsoon, the sky has not been clear. Only this morning it had got a little sunny. We crossed our fingers for getting what we had come here for.
Our landrover started at 2’o clock. We crossed Chitrey and stopped at Lameydhura for a cup of tea each.

Chitrey


Lameydhura


Last edited by Bias_Traveller; Nov 16th, 2016 at 14:51..
#9 Nov 15th, 2016, 13:27
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#9

Meghma

We had a halt at the Meghma check post to register ourselves as tourists.


We moved through dense cloud and reached GTA Tonglu Trekkers’ Hut.

Awwww… we were shivering in cold as Tonglu is 3088 meters high from the sea-level. We had one Dorm booked for the 7 of us. It was already dark. The facilities were very basic and the rooms were cold. But it was such a nice place that we were more than happy to be in here.

As we came out of the hut in order to have our dinner, we were suddenly taken aback by the view of the ether. It seemed that the sky had dropped closer and was lit with uncountable stars, which I had never seen in my life. This indicates a clear and sunny morning tomorrow. Yippie.

Although it was stellar to look at the starry azure, it was so freezing cold outside that we rushed inside the dining hut. And in that chilling temperature, the smoky rice, veg curry and daal seemed to be a bliss.
Last edited by Bias_Traveller; Nov 15th, 2016 at 15:31..
#10 Nov 15th, 2016, 15:25
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#10

Sunrise at Tonglu

Tonglu is famous for her sunrise and she kept her word.




As the eastern sky was illuminating by the golden rays, the facing Kanchanjungha was changing her colours.




It was so clear a morning that even Mt.Everest was visible. The snow-capped Kanchenjungha was huger than ever.




#11 Nov 15th, 2016, 15:29
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Dawn at Tonglu

The sleeping hills below were slowly waking up as the drooping clouds emerged from the bosom. We all were charmed.










Last edited by Bias_Traveller; Nov 16th, 2016 at 15:12..
#12 Nov 15th, 2016, 16:53
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#12
Mindblowing ..glorious photos
#13 Nov 15th, 2016, 18:01
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Thanks Himadri.
#14 Nov 16th, 2016, 00:39
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#14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bias_Traveller View Post ... We hired a guide at INR.800/- per day and a Landrover from the landrover association at INR.7500/- for the 6 days with an additional pay of INR.1000 per night stay (INR.500/- for the first night)....
Stunning pictures and glad that your mum, mausi and mama were there to keep you 3 "youngsters" in check!

There were six of you plus the driver, plus luggage. Do you have a pic of the car you used?
#15 Nov 16th, 2016, 07:05
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Thanks BT for a lovely report. This is one trek I never managed for one reason or the other. Have been to Phalut though. Looking forward to more.
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