The trek of the Rupin Pass is a fascinating trek.The sudden changes in scenery makes you trek an extra mile just to see if there is another surprise round the corner. The Rupin Pass trek has got it all.
Your trek starts at Dhaula, a quiet hamlet of a dozen homes and the last road head of Uttarakhand. Dhaula oversees the Rupin bent down a stony gorge in the river.
Getting to Dhaula:
Dhaula can be reached by a reserved vehicle from Dehradun. The other way to get there is to take a bus from Dehradun to Sankri, de-board at Naitwar and take a shared jeep to Dhaula. The bus from Dehradun leaves at 5.30 am.
If you are travelling by taxi, it will take around 10 hours to reach Dhaula, but with a lovely and a fascinating road trip.Dehradun is the nearby town to the trek base Dhaula. You can also board an overnight train from to Dehradun.
We take the trail that starts at the village and heads up the valley to SewaGaon.As you move the climb eases out in 20 minutes into the first change of backdrop: The trekkers can see 500 ft below you a wide river bed. In a next few minutes a curve in the trail and the change in scenery can be seen yet again: The Rupinrolls along out of a gorge. A steep cliff towers over the river. On the other side of the slope, the trekking trail snakes its way up through apple and apricot trees in the lush green landscape.
A 30 minutes later into the ascending trail, we halt by at a road side eatery for a while. Sewa at 2040 mts is an unattractive place to camp, though the camp site is at the arrival of the village. The trail cuts across a mixture of barley and potato fields and abruptly dips into a thick dark jungle that clears soon near the river bed. For the first time on the trek you actually trek on the river and not alongside it.Excitedly you can hop and cross the many rivulets of the river.
In 15 minutes you get down to the bank of the river where you can easily pitch your tents. This place is called as HaldiKhad. The next day’s trek carries ahead along the trail until you climb up from the banks to the road head of Gosangu.
You can prepare yourself for an exhausting trek for the day three. Sharp ascents followed by gentle level walks are the route of the walk.
We take the road towards Kwar, crossing the wooden bridge and heading towards Rupin. We take any of the trails on the left that climbs and meets up with the overhanging trail to Jiskun.
Once we’re on the main track to Jiskun, the changing sights start to assault you persistently. The mountain slope from here is no longer gentle, but a tallcliff. As you peer over the edge, far below, the Rupin glistens as the sun catches its rapids.
A scenic waterfall cascades down on the trail, with its source so high above that cannot be seen. You can halt for a while here and rest. As we start further and after a few moments you reach a rapidly flowing stream, the Raj Gad.
The trail splitsinstantly as the Raj Gad is passed by. Both tracks look suspiciously similar. As we take the trail heading up in an hour’s time we reach theJiskun village.
A halt for an hour for tea etc and we move further until after 30 minutes we cross the first post office of Himachal Pradesh. As we walk 3½ km to Jakha, the highest and the last village on the Rupin pass trek. The trail out of Jiskun descends promptly through a forest, until it reaches a captivating dark fold in the mountain. The next one hour climb to Jakha is through one of the finest trekking paths. The backdrop changes frequently with the trail getting complicated up on the ridge line of the slope. Two thirds of the ways up, lookout out for an equally broad trailthat diverges. The other trail heads up to a village, Dhara, higher than Jakha.
Jakha is a township totally enclosed in the ways of the Satsang.
The distinct trail ascends, passing through fields of the upper Jakha village before entering a magnificent fir forest. Watch as you walk the towering blue pines, a few maple trees within with their golden orange leaves strewn amidst the pine cones and the patches of snow in the valley on the other side. Within an hour into the descending forest, arrives the most surprising part of the trek; the vast snow bridge across the Rupin. The bridge has its advantages though. We arrive at the first open grassland of Uduknal. You can see little tributaries from the upper reaches of the mountain flow and characterized with perennial snow patches Rupin changes colour to a glorious icy blue – the water clear as crystal. After an hour and a half we reach open grassland that is Buras Kandi. As we walk further we move to a bigger clearing. We are now in a clearing with the Rupin on your left diverging to give away to a little island. The island has a carpet of green grass, lush with its life. This is Saruwas thatch. You can camp and enjoy the backdrop as the night descends.
The trek is a fascinating one. What’s amazing about theSaruwas thatch is the sight of the Rupin gushing out of a gorge at the eye level ahead. Silver birches (Bhoj trees) are common, their barks peeling off to reveal the sacred Bhoj leaves. You can climb to a bump on the trail – and let the big surprise of the day hit you.
As you peer from the lip of the U-Shaped valley you may notice thousands of waterfalls cascading down the brown walls to meet the Rupin. In front of it are miles of green meadows, dotted with thousands of yellow marigolds.
As the walk climbs gently through the lushness of the meadows you can feel at every few steps tiny brooks gurgle under your boots. The climb is like crawling along near to the top of a coaster ride, waiting, anticipating for the next view. You have arrived at the loveliest meadow of the trek, a site so beautiful. You can camp here as no Himalayan camp site can be a better location. You are in the middle of the valley’s bowl. Beyond the waterfall is the alpine Dhauladar Range looming large. Pitch the tents and take a seat out on the grandest landscaped lawn that nature can serve up. This is Dhanderas Thatch.