The Journey so far…
It was quite cold at night at Barot Village but after a long last day all three of us slept quite tight and well enough till 8.30 AM 🙂 … This day was planned for nothing but little walks around and then to venture out in nearby villages for DoW Causes
Day 2 | Around Barot Village – Luhardi – Badagran
After a quick bath, the junior was all set out but he was quite surprised to see river flowing besides and cocks/hens running here and there right on road. He looked at me, notoriously smiled and then started running after them to catch them 😀 … He needs to go stronger and quick in time to come to catch them but he did not loose confidence 😀 After getting tired he wanted to play his usual game sitting besides the river and throwing stones up there in water to see the ripples and bubbles. He played there for an hour or so and fully enjoyed it. Meantime our Breakfast was ready and the aaloo paranthas were cooked with home grown aaloos (potatoes) only. They tasted nice but my wife refrained herself with light breads only.
A Little Background on Barot
Barot is located about 69 KMs from Mandi at a diversion of 25 KMs from a place called Ghatasani on Mandi – Pathankot Highway (NH-20). The drive usually takes about 2.5 Hrs to reach from Mandi. It is commonly called as Picnic spot where the route passes through thick cedar forests. Barot is actually quite popular among back packers + trekkers too and also forms the base for Nargu Wildlife Sanctuary which lies across the Uhl River where you can spot black bears, monal or ghorals. There are some trekking routes in to Bada Bhangal that also starts from Barot. Then, there are couple of temples as well. There is a trout hatchery centre as well along with a haulage trolley of the British times that connects Barot to Jogindernagar cutting the distance to just 12 KMs from 40 KMs. There are ample of walks and vast grounds in the village where you can camp or sit, relax, bask in the sun, etc.. at total peace & calmness surrounding you 😀 … However, the views on the way to Barot especially at the Hilltop of Jhatingri is unmatched, and the sunset from there just looks too fabulous 🙂 🙂
In the end, Barot and Luhardi both gets about 1.5-3 Feet of snowfall in January and February. So, if you are looking out to places to find snow near Delhi, you can surely check out Barot in Jan – Feb. Just keep in mind that since it is a local road after Ghatasani, so in case of heavy snowfall it may close down for a day or two. Keep a buffer of 1-2 days in case you are traveling to Barot for snowfall or snow 🙂
At around 11.30 AM we left for local sightseeing around Barot and our first target was Luhardi village, about 6 KMs away. The road was not much different and was average in condition but the views were lovely on the way to this quite little village across the road. You need to take the diversion road from the main bridge which follows the main road to Badagran but keep in mind that you don’t have to cross that bridge. The Uhl river (guess tributary to it) will keep the company with you till the village.
Luhardi village offered lovely views of Snow Capped Peaks and this village also receives about 2.5 Feet of snowfall in the month of January and February. The road leading to Luhardi ends at a Hydro project being constructed there about 1.5 KMs from village and you can walk from there to another remote village by the name Poling which has some ancient houses. After reaching the village, we roamed around and then looked for the primary school in order to execute DoW Cause | GYAAN 500 by distributing stationary we carried. As usual it was the most lovely moments of the trip where we saw different smiles all around those cute little faces. Junior was enjoying the company of the children too as he played with them. The school runs everyday from 10 AM to 4 PM and both teachers were from Palampur and warm welcoming.
Then we had some new as well as old woolens clothes as a part of DoW Cause | WARMTH 500 to distribute. We distributed them to needy people there and most of them we distributed to workers constructing the roads on the way back to Barot and towards Badagran about 18 KMs from Barot. After reaching the main road, we reached the bridge to Bada Gaon and we decided to head out there. However, crushed stones were laid for long after traveling about 7 KMs and we decided to come back. It was 2.30 PM and we went to PWD Rest House to see if we can get something to eat. Well, if you get a chance to book PWD Rest House at Barot (check How To Book PWD Rest House) there is nothing like it BUT the river will be a bit far though still walk-able and non visible from there. However, it was beautifully constructed with garden outside.
The luck wasn’t with us and there was no one to cook food. We then went to Trout Hatchery Center located just next to PWD Rest House where Junior enjoyed seeing the fishes. It was difficult to make out fishes for him as the water was not that clean and had to focus a lot to see them through. Moreover, you have to see them outside of a cage. The fishes are released into Uhl River from there but it was breeding time currently. You can do angling and catch the trout yourself and about 30 KMs of Uhl river is allowed for angling. You can take the angler’s equipment on lease in Barot, catch your trout on your own and then fry/cook/feast them 😀 … Anyways, disappointed we left from there back to the home stay for our lunch. We ordered some egg bhurji and buns with tea and being hungry they vanished in no time 😉 …
After that it was a relaxing and peaceful evening around the Uhl River, junior playing around with cocks/hens, a walk to the zero point where haulage trolly system was installed and self cooked local Rajma – Rice for dinner 😀 … The peace, calmness and serenity around the Barot village with musical sound of Uhl River flowing besides the room is THE USP of Barot.
Luckily, Junior did not puke today and enjoyed his turn out in the hills to the core. Being tired, he slept in no time 😀 and so do we… At night there was a huge sound of shattering and in sleep it looked like some was battering the door of the room. Being on road, it triggered our nervous system running very fast and some anxiety being alone with the family 😉 … My wife was specially disturbed and asked to verify with uncle as it was just 10:30. After the call we got relaxed as I assumed the sound was from the shutter of the shop which was pushed down by uncle himself for closing the shop. It was cold good night sleep for us 🙂 🙂
Stay tuned for the next update…