Monday, October 03, 2005

Yatra to Hemkunt Sahib


I finally decided to upload all the pictures that we took at the trip to Sri Hemkunt Sahib, the Valley of Flowers and the Temple of Badrinath Ji.
This first picture is of Me with Ismeet and Gaurav (mates from office). We're standing in front of the Gurudwara Sahib at Rishikesh. From here on starts the journey towards GovindGhat.

~*~*~*You may click on the pictures on this page to enlarge them*~*~*~

Having reached GovindGhat, we stayed the night at the lodging provided by the Gurudwara Sahib facilities.That's us outside the room given to us. We're about to leave for the climb:

At 8 am, after having langar at the GovindGhat Gurudwara Sahib, we started our trek towards GobindDham. It's a 13 kilometer climb from there.
These pictures show me with Ismeet and (with) Gaurav standing atop the bridge that marks the start of the climb.
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Here are some more pictures we took while climbing up towards GovindGhat:
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Sikhs In The City :-)
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Supporting the mountains:
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..and also finding time to pose :-)
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Posing in front of the waterfall. (The bloke who took this picture for us realised later he was standing a bit too close to a large bush of poison ivy. Poor chap.. I felt guilty for having led to him getting rashes on his hands.)
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On reaching GobindDham, we stayed the night and next morning, started out to the journey towards Hemkunt Sahib. We were to start out at 0430 hrs in the morning, however, the fatigue of the trek of the the daybefore was a bit too much for the poor legs of the 3 office-goers. So, we kinda over slept (woke up at 8 in the morning). Now, we needed to hurry, or else, would miss the second Hukum and the Ardas at 1300 hrs. We were to miss the first one for sure (I had read on a website prior to the trip, that the 1st Hukam is at 10 and the second, at 1).
The 6 kilometer journey is a steep climb (the GobindDham climb was nothing in comparison), and takes 4 hours to complete, if one climbs at a normal steady pace.

Ismeet ji (my physically fit pal) had no problem climbing. He overtook us by a league (...I wonder if he intended to make 2 journeys back and forth that same day..LOL).
Well, while climbing, we got to know that the 2nd Hukum was at 12, not 1. And that's what made me run, you see, I didn't want to miss the second Ardas. And with Waheguru Jee's Blessings, I did make it !!(I reached at 11:53). So, with 7 minutes to spare, I was able to accomplish a journey that started at 8:45 am (a little over 3 hours). I was happy indeed, and grateful.
We saw these big glaciers along the way...the pictures of which are here on the right and the left. The camera didn't seem to get a very clear view of them it seems, unfortunately.












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Some Pictures of me climbing:





















They say I look like a 'budha babba' in this one. And "they" would probably be correct :-).




















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This one would probably fall in the "The Last Picture I Eva Took" category.. LOL
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Beautiful scenery we saw along the way. Here's a "green mountain with a misty white top".


















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Here are some pictures we took on reaching Hemkunt Sahib:

I love the symmetry in this picture:

Me, posing after having taken the holy dip:

It kept getting misty after every few minutes. I managed to take this picture of the Sarovar when there weren't any clouds around:

Inside the Gurudwara Sahib:




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A jatha from Kanpur did beautiful kirtan all throughout the climb. It was simply wonderful listening to them sing. They then did the seva of changing the cloth on the Nishan Sahib.
The bhai sahib jee in the center of the picture below sang a beautiful Shabad while the cloth was changed. I remember a few of the words:


"Umbra te chuman walaa, eh hai nishaan sadaa...
Umbra te chuman walaa, eh hai nishaan sadaa...

Eh hai nishaan sadaa, eh hai pehchaan sadaa...
Eh hai nishaan sadaa, eh hai pehchaan sadaa...

Aasey dee khatir Baba Deep Singh shaheed huey..."

Here, the Nishan Sahib is about to be hoisted:


And there it is... With Ismeet ji and Gaurav with a Sevadaar ji in the foreground:


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Pictures taken at the TAP SHILA(meditation Stone):

"The Guru, and his humble sikh..."


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While climbing down:

Ismeet jee came up with this nice idea of Seva. He started to buy packets of glucose (which were being sold at double their price) and we started to do distribute glucose to all the people who were still climbing. Soon, others who were trekking down with us, started doing the same thing. It was Awesome:
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Next morning, we start out towards the Valley Of Flowers:

They say breakfast is the most important meal of the day.. so her we are at the resturant outside the Gurudwara Sahib:

Paid a few hundred bucks and bought ourselves some tickets to the national park. Met some of those good ol' Glaciers along the way...


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A picture with Elizabeth (Belgium) and her friend from France:



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IT IS TIME TO MEET THE MONK
... Who Never Had A Ferrarri.. ;-)


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Ismeet Ji (probably tryin the Titanic pose, or as the scarecrow maybe):
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ON THE ROCKS



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Posing, outside our hotel room in GobindDham:


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At the Temple Of Badrinath

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On the way back, we stopped for a while at Haridwar:

Here is a picture with the rest ofthe passengers of the bus...

The "Temple of Ganges" and the 'asthi visargan' ghat behind us...

"Come on in,.. the water is fine".
aaa.. no, Thank you.
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Stopped for food at a resort:

Me acting stupid...
This looks like one of those "Spot the difference" photographs:
One last picture: