Kumaon in Uttarakhand is one of the most lovely places in the Himalayas where I travel mostly in winter. However, nothing takes away anything from its charm in spring or summer seasons. Even in the rainy season, Kumaon is magical, with clouds floating in the valley and dense green colors spread across miles.
Hence, I thought why not after many years of writing about Kashmir, Ladakh, Lahaul & Spiti, and Himachal, I shall shift the focus towards Uttarakhand on the Devil On Wheels Travel platform.
Let's quickly dive into the details:
I have traveled the majority of the entire circuit of Kumaon in Uttarakhand, which is quite popular, thanks to my year-end travel trip to this amazingly beautiful place. You can read about recent rendezvous with Kumaon at Munsiyari – Dharchula – Chaukori – Itinerary, Road Conditions & Updates.
As far as the location of Kumaon in Uttarakhand, north of Kumaon neighbors Tibet, and the east shares the boundary with Nepal. The Uttar Pradesh state lies towards the south side of Kumaon. Finally, Garhwal lies on the west side of Kumaon which is the other half region of mountain state Uttarakhand.
October to March is the time when the 300 km-wide panoramic views of Himalayan peaks like Trisul, Nanda Devi and Panchchuli are visible (apart from cloudy days) from higher villages of Kumaon region. All these remote Himalayan villages are mostly beyond Almora. So, you will not go wrong with this time of the year.
Summers come with a forest fire, and many times views to this Himalayan range get blocked during that period. So, winters to spring are a good bet to go for clear views with blue skies in the Kumaon region.
Here is the most common itinerary that I mostly suggest to readers of DoW Travel Blog covering the majority of preferred locations in the Kumaon region of Uttarakhand.
Travel Tip: You may also plan to stay at Lohaghat or Abbott Mount if you decide to come down home from Chaukori via the Pithoragarh side.
In my last trip, I was carrying Airtel Postpaid, BSNL Postpaid and Vodafone Postpaid were with some friends. Following was the signal status:
Travel Tip: Look out for these offbeat easy treks in Uttarakhand to plan your upcoming trip in this Himalayan state.
Let me share the breakdown of road conditions for your upcoming trip to Kumaon. You will be able to better plan the trip and timings of the day knowing these road conditions.
The road conditions from Delhi to Moradabad are smooth sailing. But for traveling to Kashipur from Moradabad, you can take two roads. One road goes parallel to Thakurdwara, and the other goes via Baazpur.
Moradabad – Kashipur via road parallel to Thakurdwara: 2-3 km of the road in horrible state rest mostly good though single lane. After crossing Moradabad, you take a left to Kashipur, and after driving for 3-4 km, you will see a board saying Nainital on the right. Take that right, that road will take you towards Baazpur.
Do not go to Baazpur, but on that road, there will be one crossing after 6-7 km, where you need to take a left. That road is narrow and pathetic for 2-3 km. However, it will save you from a similar mess of 10-12 km on each parallel road running towards Nainital via Baazpur and Kashipur via Thakurdwara, respectively.
This road will take you to Kashipur from where you follow the route to Ramnagar and then to Jim Corbett – Mohaan. If it is night, it is better to take the route from Haldwani – Rampur, IMO.
Kashipur – Ramnagar – Jim Corbett – Mohaan – Marchula: Mostly good roads with some bad patches in between.
Marchula – Maulikhal – Dotiyal – Rakshthal – Manila: Mostly Excellent, smooth sailing.
Manila – Jainal – Masi: Good roads mostly.
Masi – Chaukotia: Mostly bad road, pavement underway.
Chaukotia – Dwaraghat – Someshwar – Kausani – Baijnath – Gwaldam: Very Good roads mostly.
Gwaldam – Bageshwar – Chaukori – Thal: Very Good roads mostly but single-lane having quite many curves. Guys with motion sickness take care on this route. Earlier, we planned to take Kapkot – Tejam route to Munsiyari, but locals asked us to go via the Chaukori route from Bageshwar as for small car Kapkot route was too bad in shape. Mostly High GC vehicles run over that route. However, the Kapkot route is about 30 KMs shorter than the Chaukori route.
Thal – Tejam – Birthi – Kalimuni Top – Munsiyari: The road starts to deteriorate after Thal towards Munsiyari. There are some steep stretches where you need to push the vehicle though not physically ;), some bad stretches where if in the small car, then you need to be careful. About 30-35% of the road is in such a state. But the rest of the road is in good condition. Though we found some hard ice after Kalimuni Top, it was manageable.
Munsiyari – Darkot: Good roads mostly being well tarred.
Darkot – Madkote – Jaulijibi: Mostly bad roads but very scenic drive. I will say 60% of the road is quite bad with about 12-15% very very bad and rest 40% odd road is good and excellent in patches. It was one of the most beautiful roads with the unique scenic landscape around to drive in Uttarakhand. Gori Ganga river accompanies you up to Jaulijibi, adds the charm to the drive. There were multiple landslide points, water crossings, creaking wooden bridges. The Water crossings in summers/rains would surely mean trouble due to swollen water levels. If you have been to Kinnaur Valley up to Nako in Himachal Pradesh then you can co-relate the road conditions much to it as it made me remind of those roads & views in Kinnaur only with Sutluj flowing beside 🙂
Jaulijibi – Dharchula: Mostly bad and very bad in shape, broken.
Jaulijibi – Askote – Didihat: Mostly bad in shape with few good patches in between. Jaulijibi is a merging point where the road from Munsiyari and Pitthorgarh – Askote meets. We planned to go via Pitthoragarh – Lohaghat earlier, but then as Dharchula was not that good, we planned to go to Chaukori via Askote – Didihat road and rest there for a couple of days.
Didihat – Thal – Chaukori: Mostly good and very good in shape.
Chaukori – Berinag – Sheraghat – Dhaulchinna – Barechinna – Almora: Mostly excellent roads with lovely dense forests, totally loved the drive. The road between Golu Devta Temple and Barechinna was in bad shape, else like I said mostly perfect.
Chaukori – Patal Bhuvaneshwar: Very bad in shape after Raigara. Butter smooth roads from Berinag to Chaukori.
Almora – Bhimtal – Kathgodam – Haldwani – Rudrapur: Very good roads, smooth sailing.
Rudrapur – Rampur – Moradabad: Mix of bad and average roads. The road between Rudrapur and Rampur has improved but still has a lot of potholes where the car gets some abuse as you tend to drive fast.
Travel Tip: Do not forget to check this list of things to carry on a road trip to the Himalayas.
I am sure the above itinerary for the Kumaon region if not help you 100% with planning a trip to Uttarkhand but can certainly act as a starting point for your upcoming Kumaon trip or a trip to any of these places mentioned in the itinerary.
Do share your valuable thoughts or queries or doubts you have, and we can discuss more your upcoming Travel Plans for Kumaon either in the comments below or in the Itinerary Advice section of the DoW Community. We will be happy to help you plan your trip :).
This post was last modified on Mar 31, 2021 23:15
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