Chitkul  situated on the bank of Baspa river is the last but one populated village in Kinnaur  District Himachal Pradesh inhabited near the Indo-China border. It is mostly covered with snow in winter and people moves to lowest region during this time. It was much awaited trip being decided by me & my parents to pay visit to Chitkul Village & pay reverences to Mata Durga (Temple ) which is one of the most famous Temples in Kinnaur.

 Me and my parents started the journey from Ireland in Mid August 2018 to India. 

Generally people travel in month of April as weather is clear and favourable during that time,  but at our previous visit performed  in mid of April 2012, it was raining heavily and many streams on way to Chitkul & way back, were flooded & had very tough time to cross. This time as decided to go ahead, it was possible by end of September. As we were travelling in month of October, we packed our luggage including enough woollen clothes, sleep bags & some snacks for journey. On September 30,We woke up early in morning and started our journey in the hired taxi, from our house, Faridabad NCR to Chitkul, last point of the famous Kinner Kailash Parikarma, Chitkul is almost 650 km on one side from Delhi. On way we passed through Panipat, Karnal, Ambala, Kalka and in evening, we reached Shimla, Capital and historical city of Himachal Pradesh. Here we broke our journey and stayed at Rest House, for one night.

 After having our  breakfast in morning, October we started our journey forward through Indo- Tibet Boarder Road via Kufri, Narkandha, popular tourists places, Nirath, known for ancient and unique Sun Temple, Baba Balak Nath Temple & new Hydro Electric Project on River Sutlej, about 20 km before Rampur an famous commercial town, one time HQ of Princely State of Kinnaur, beautiful place situated at the bank of river Satluj . It is also famous for hand spun blankets. The town has maintained  age-old tradition of hosting the International Lavi Fair in the month of November for more than 300 years. At Nirath, In the year 2012, the bridge on Sutluj was washed away in floods and we had to go by traditional rope-way crossings which comprise of manually driven trolleys to pay respect to the Deities,this time new bridge was in place, there was no difficulty to cross and pay respect to the Deity. Further from Rampur, Along Satluj river, we crossed Jhakri, where an Power House of 1200 MW for Nathpa- Jhakri H.E Project is situated, little further, we crossed Jeorie, where Ghanvi HEP is located, a few KM further,we halted and preyed at Taranda, Durga Mata Temple, took blessings for safe & secure journey forward and fulfilling all dreams, an belief prevailing. Taranda, road in vertical cliff, shaped half tunnel, an civil engineering amazing achievement. Along Satluj river, we crossed Jhakri, where an Power House of 1200 MW for Nathpa- Jhakri H.E Project is situated. By After noon, we reached Bhaba Nagar, HO of BHEP, rested & took  meals in the Guest House and halted for the night.

 Next morning on October 2, after having breakfast,we proceeded further, Crossed Nathpa, where Dam of NJHEP on Satluj is built and little further Underground Power House of BHEP is located, then comes Wangtoo, one time, there used to be defence services check post, there is bifurcation for Katgaon, where water diversion works have been constructed on Bhaba River, an tributary of Satluj River & other goes to Tibet Boarder, via Tapri, Karcham. From Wangtoo, we could see an Power House and Reservoir of Wangtoo Karcham HEP and by about 1 pm, we reached Karcham, Where there is bifurcation, one to Sangla Valley, Chitkul and Tibet Border,other to Reckong Peo, Kalpa, Distt, HO of Kinnaur , Pooh, and Tibet Border. Here in Karcham, Baspa River meets Satluj River. Underground Power House of Baspa HEP is situated on other side, across the River. 

Now we started travelling towards Sangla Valley, a single lane road, having limited locations to make pass other vehicles. Sangla Valley is also called second Heaven on Earth Planet. After crossing Reservoir on Baspa River, we continued our journey to Chitkul, reached over there in the evening, Durga Temple was shut, did not open till 7 pm, we tried our best to get it opened through managerial members of Temple, but did not succeed. Finally we preyed to the Goddess from outside of  gate, where we could just peep into & offer our prayers. There was no other way out, ultimately we decided to get back instead of getting caught in bad weather. All along this journey, we came across high cliffs, rock and sandy glaciers, HE Projects, Temples, Historical Important Places & Fruit and Non Fruit trees.

 On way back, we did not stop any where except some food and cup of tea, passed by all those same places, Thanked The Almighty, reached home safely, in early morning on October 3, 2017, full charges of taxi paid to the driver, started preparing for Journey back to Ireland, scheduled on October 6, 2017.

 

 


Sonia Singla