My Roaming Spirit
Traveler | Photographer | Co-founder of myroamingspirit
In our previous blog we shared our experience on Theog, Himachal Pradesh and how did we manage to reach our hotel. We also talked about our wonderful spa session.
If you haven't read, here is a quick link Theog - A Quiet Escape Into The Mountains Part 1.
To me a lush carpet of pine needles or spongy grass is more welcome than the most luxurious Persian rug.
The next Day (Day 3) started at 6:00 a.m. with another hike uphill, crossing paths with a Tibetan house with a history of war. It was the only house in an around 1000 acres of land which survived the war. The hike was planned to enjoy the mother nature, away from the city stress. Point of being away from crowded Shimla town was achieved.
Its funny how one never sulks about being sleepy or any misadventures coming your way when you are in mountains.
On the slopes of these pine tree covered mountains we came across a quaint lil village with just about handful of houses. Almost all of them had a House With A view, perfectly nestled to soak in the views and savor the serenity. Most of the houses still had the old traditional charm with mud walls and cobbled roofs resting on wooden logs.
Our path was smooth and uneventful, surrounded by Pine trees and patch of small apple orchards. We found ourselves admiring the beauty of the woods and the vegetation covered with fresh snow. The sun rays could not touch the forest floor as the treetops which created a canopy over our head were dense. There was a gentle breeze, creating the single sound of rustling leaves. The leaves appeared as though they were dying to fall out of the tree and join their companions on the forest floor. Together with pine needles and other flora the leaves formed a thick springy carpet for us to walk upon.
The whole setting was augmented by bird chirpings and rustling leaves, giving us our moment of the morning session of mindfulness. But.........
Our little conversation with our instructor/guide filled the air with folklores of Theog. He surprised us by carrying 2 portable chairs & a foldable table. Not to forget he had a picnic kit ( Tea, muffins and some peanut + jaggery bars. Spending about an hour in the wilderness, we spoke about how the most dramatic elements of the area were the majestic trees themselves. Tall and stately, glowing red trunks and high crowns towering over a thick vegetation with grasses and native plants. We even started planning for our next vacation.
Our conversation was interrupted by our guide announcing that it was time to go back. The walk, back to the hotel was filled with complete silence. We were reminiscing about the hike already, as if it had happened a long time ago. The mountain view remained same, but the commercially ploughed slopes, now, had farmers working on them and the melted snow has made the dirt road muddy.
We thought, we would call it a day, and then we got a call from one of our friends who was in Shimla. He insisted to join them in Kufri (15kms from Theog). After a quick (brunch), we reached Kufri by around 1:00 p.m. as the roads were clear and there was no patch of snow/ice over them. We rented our winter gear, and got us a funny ride to the top of the hill. The donkeys were used to carry the tourists to the top, one can also choose to hike all the way up, but the snow fall made it all the way more difficult. The narrow path to the top of the hill was hanging at the edge of the slop. Every turn seemed impossible and scary. The whole valley down was covered with fresh powdery snow. After spending couple of hours playing in the snow, we were devilishly hungry and hence decided to driver to Shimla for dinner. We spent the late evening at a classic Gastro Pub 'The Brew Estate'. Post Dinner, we took a stroll around the famous Mall Road and the adjacent narrow streets of The Christ Church. People were flocking around carrying their umbrellas and the street was busy in spite of the continuous snow fall. Life in mountains is tough, we told to ourselves.
The day could not have got better than this with the cumulative experience of hill top stay, mountain view, apple orchards, bird spotting, breath of fresh air, fog covered valley, snow fall and meeting a friend. We successfully disconnected from our daily mundane life and reconnected with the surroundings.