Billing Hiking Trekking and Camping

Bir Billing Jungle Trail 4

How to Go Hiking Trekking to Billing

 

How to Go Hiking Trekking to Billing, the Second Best Paragliding Launch Site of Asia in Kangra, Himachal Pradesh. Hiking and trekking around Triund near Palampur, Baijnath.

Billing is the Second Best Para-gliding Launch Site of Asia in Himachal Pradesh, distt Kangra and is linked via road and the jungle hiking trail as well.

If you don’t want to use automobile or taxi and want to go to Billing, then this post will guide you on how to go hiking, trekking to Billing.

To start your hiking to Billing, you need to reach Bir and the building of Tourist Information Center and the Water Storage tank few meters behind the building the by the side of the Bir-Billing Road.

To start your Billing Hike and Trek

1st. Reach Baijnath by road either from Dharamsala, Palampur or Kangra side.

2nd From Baijnath ISBT board any bus bound to Bir (mostly you will find Anurag Bus Service and HRTC ordinary state bus, that ply directly from Baijnath, Palampur and Dharamsala ISBT or Himsuta a Volvo Bus of Himachal Roadways Transport Corporation from Kashmiri Gate, New Delhi ISBT)

3rd Once you reach Bir bus stop marked with gate to Tea Factory and some shops. Walk towards North east, by pass road heading to the village Gunehar and another one to left going towards Rest House.

You will notice the building of Tourist Information Center on your right hand side. Keep on walking on the road to Billing. After around 2-3 minutes’ walk you will notice a medium sized concrete Water Tank to the right of Bir Billing Road and to your right downward side.

Bir Billing Jungle Trail 1

View of Water Tank to the right of Bir Billing Road

4th Just to your left, you will notice a rough trail going northward, here is a map link for the Bir-Billing Jungle Trail.

Bir Billing Jungle Trail 6

The Bir Billing Jungle Trail

Climb upward and now you are on the old jungle trail to Billing, no need to worry about Wild Animals, but still remain alert and keep walking straight upward, avoid any trail going deep left or deep right.

Climb upward and now you are on the old jungle trail to Billing, no need to worry about Wild Animals, but still remain alert and keep walking straight upward, avoid any trail going deep left or deep right.

With your watchful eyes you will identify the trail without any problem.

Keep walking upward and this very trail will cross the Bir-Billing Road four times…but the trail is shorter than the road. This is an easy hiking trail with a little bit of steepness on final climb.

After the first and second intersection with Bir-Billing Road, the trail will cross the road third time and it is marked with a sun shelter point. From this point you will see the gate and the trail for the temple of Mata Shatvadini.

Bir Billing Jungle Trail

The trail for the temple of Mata Shatvadini

The temple is situated amidst the jungle and by the side of Bir-Billing Jungle Trail. Keep walking slowly and steadily with little pause for catching up the air. After around 10-15 minutes you will stand in front of the temple.

Bir Billing Jungle Trail 3

Temple of Mata Shatvdini

After the temple Bir-Billing Jungle trail intersects Bir-Billing Road (marked with two concrete benches) for the fourth time.

Bir Billing Jungle Trail 2

Here the steepness of the trail also increases and you will have to be extra careful while climbing here, the steepness of trail is around 30 to 50 meters or less and you may get the company of macaques.

Bir Billing Jungle Trail 4

The View of Forth Trail and Road Intersection from steep point of Bir Billing Jungle Trail

After that the trail is like some easy hill walk and little climb before merging with the Bir-Billling Road.

In Billing you will find 4-6 tea stalls, one forest rest house and a small village sort of providing tents for overnight camping and food.

Bir Billing Jungle Trail 5

Billing, the Seconf Best Paragliding Launch site of Asia in Kangra, Himachal Pradesh, India

From Billing you can also go on Hillwalking towards RajGundha the gateway to Thamsar Pass via KukurGundha, Palchek and Behdpal and if you seek more of adventure then can go up to Bada Bhangal

Mountains Love

Enjoying Indrahar Pass -

Mountains Love

 

This is not about the height or difficulty level of Mountain Pass….it’s more than that! 

I got up early by 03:30 am to get ready for my third High Mountain but first long duration and length hike with all ration and cooking stuff on backpack. Left home around 5:40 am and was at Dramman around 06:15 am and the good thing was like election campaign days and marriage functions, for all taxis were engaged, so I’d to kill myself at Dramman for almost 2 hours and finally at 8:30 am got the lift up to Kandwari….

I remember my first high mountain hike of Indrahar Pass in Dhauladhar Mountain Range..during my first climb and stay in Indrahar Jot, the feeling I had was just like a child has once he/she sits on the shoulders of parents and seeing the views around that are generally barred owing to once height!

Pir Panjal Range and ManiMahesh Kailash Peak Chamb

Pir Panjal Range and ManiMahesh Kailash Peak Chamba

But before my climb to Indrahar Pass I’d been invited and confined only to Triund and Snowline cafe of Triund Hill for many many times, many times…even Lahesh Cave was far for me…but then on July 19th 2011 with a hint from Dhauladhar, I finally dared to climb up to Lahesh Cave through thick fog humanly alone but accompanied by mystic sounds coming from melting glaciers waterfall and since I had no clue of Lahesh Cave, I just followed the Red Arrows (here Om letter has nothing to do with Religion)

Om Letter with Red Arrow Marks

Om Letter with Red Arrow Marks

but soon they also vanished in thick fog and all I could hear was the mysterious sound of glacier waterfall (just like some women/girl singing with smooth and thin voice)!

Never judge a Mountain and Hill by it’s height!

It was only in August 2013, when I was accompanied by Gordon Cole (his was also first climb for Lahesh Cave) we reached the same spot where I’d lost the Red Arrows in thick fog and had seen only the glacier waterfall, I realized that on July 2011, I was standing right in front of the Lahesh Cave but could not see the cave due to thick fog!

Leftover Glacier Waterfall in front of Lahesh Cave

Left over Glacier Waterfall in front of Lahesh Cave

Mountains O Mountains, mountains love have fascinated my soul ever since I opened my eyes to this amazing planet and was of 2 feet height and during my stay in Dharamsala things just went like crazy, the sight of Dhauladhar and Triund Hill were so tempting I’ve no words to explain but since I’d no company that time so i could not think of climbing up..but the night of December 31st, 2000 and a badly planned group hike to Triund Hill was a nightmare, but even after a cold feet night in the caves of Triund, the first campground of Triund Hill, I enjoyed the morning views of Dhauladhar and TriundHill.

But that joy was short, as after consuming water stored in kerosene can made my tummy go mad and we were forced to climb down early in the morning…and that mismanaged trek to Triund re-ignited my desire of Solo Hill walks and post that year I went hiking to Triund infinite number of times all the way from Chandigarh (I’m not trying to impress and ignore many other hikers and tea stall owners in Triund).

But every time I’d been to Triund, always gazed at the Mun Peak and tried to locate Indrahar Pass. Even from the Temple of Kunal Pathri Devi (located at the real top of Triund Hill), it was only gazing Mun Peak and tracing Indrahar Pass.

Temple of Kunal Pathri Devi at real top of Triund Hill

Temple of Kunal Pathri Devi at real top of Triund Hill

Every time, I only got directional words towards the trail to Indrahar Pass from cafe owners in Triund, the first campground of TriundHill..and finally on August 2013 another unplanned trek to Lahesh Cave with Gordon Cole also with thick fog we managed to reach Lahesh Cave and further were followed and accompanied in by Manu Singh Panwar and his friends in Lahesh Cave (now all were new on this trail).

Manu and I took the lead and followed the Red Arrows and we were tailed by Gordon Cole and friends. On trail we were greeted by another stream of thick fog and mild rain and bit of hail…we took shelter under overhang boulders, wherever we could find and then a blue hole appeared through thick black clouds giving us hope and strength to keep on climbing and trekking.

Here I must thank Rijul SherGill (Dhauladhar Trekker) and other trekkers for sharing photographs of Indrahar Pass and the temple of Jota Wali Mata a top.

Jota Wali Mata at Indrahar Pass

Jota Wali Mata at Indrahar Pass

After trekking through boulders, fallen rocks and crawling through stairs like trail we got the sight of Trishula and that re-energized us.
As a welcome gift Dhauladhar again showered us with thin hail and mild mild rain but with cold winds…and finally we were hugging Indrahar Pass in Dhauladhar Mountain Range and were blessed by Jota Wali Mata.

“Respect Nature, please do not throw your garbage in Nature”

Amazing views, you have to see it to feel it….it was still raining and fog was climbing up from Chamba side thus barring the views of Pir Panjal Range and Triund Hill and after spending about 45 minutes, we decided to climb down and luckily one of our friend slipped over the moving rock on trail but was gifted with life by sacrificing an injury to his finger….and we were back in Snow-Line Cafe for sharing our experiences and some folk song numbers on Guitar by Manu Singh…and my second call to Indrahar Pass was on October 2013 with Raman Sharma of Simla and this time the views were all crystal clear and we spent a good 01:30 hours at Indrahar Pass, enjoying the company of Dhauladhar, Jota Wali Mata and bright Sun shine for the tan…we even got the views of  Pir Panjal Range, the trail to Kuarsi and sight of Holy home of SHIVA and PARVATI the MANIMAHESH KAILASH PEAK and many other peaks.

So back in Kandbari and so much awaited climb for Waru Pass.

We burned most of our energy from a steep trail with a Speedy Race to Satchaali the base camp for Waru Jot. As per standards of Hiking, this was not hiking but a race. By the time we reached the base camp, I was tired to the bones with tummy going nuts. Lessons I learned – (A) “Don’t drink water from every source!” (B) Walk with steady steps and not run.

“Never walk or climb mountains and hills as a race, rather be like a shepherd, who guides his flock of sheep and herd of goat.

Base of Waru Pass ahead Satchali

Base of Waru Pass ahead Satchali

“Never walk or climb mountains and hills as a race, rather be like a shepherd, who guides his flock of sheep and herd of goat. Enjoy the walk and the views, keeping a tab on Sun shine”

The thick snow on trail to Waru Pass from the base was just like, you must not Hurry and have Patience, Observe , Learn and once you are ready then come to me…..that’s what Waru Pass also sounded saying to me…just like Indrahar Pass had taught me, before letting me hug Dhauladhar and this is also what GOD tries to teach us humans to Learn and Purify yourself before Salvation and Moksha from the cycle of Birth and Rebirth ~

Again I don’t want to Prove anything to Anyone and I am not Above Nature also, I have no Grudge to anyone (it’s not easy to overcome this but Work is in Progress)  So I will come again…..

Know How for Kareri Lake Hike

Kareri Lake Trek

Kareri Lake Hike

Kareri Lake or Kumarwah Dal, is a high Dhauladhar Mountain shallow water lake….what more of so appears to be a huge pond extended to be like a lake by the locals.

The reason why it appears to be extended by humans is that…the there are water exit points which are raised with a mixture of stone blocks and concrete.

Because of this, the restricted flow of water of Dal or Lake, the lake water is not suitable for consumption or bathing…reason…this November end we observed (without microscope) micro organisms floating in lake water and there may be more of nano organisms.

Kareri Lake is not a Fresh Water lake because it is not suitalbe for drinking, as of the shop near lake temple…that shop itself gets it’s part of drinkable water via a PVC plastic pipe which goes through the lake and is directly connected to inlet point from which fresh water flows in to the lake and avoiding any contact with lake water.

Between October to December, you are not supposed to camp by the side of the lake and the reason for that is (except if you have proper and standard stuff to purify the water), the water source of lake goes below ground…and the PVC pipe runs dry and whatever water is flowing is either almost stagnant in nature or is not suitable for consumption even after boiling and don’t even think of bathing!

By mid or end of November you can see shallowness of the lake and with in 20 meters of lake center you can notice boulders with grey grass clearly, which forms the base of the lake.

Also one more thing the if you are on hike then do avoid drinking the water of Lyund rivulet that flows by the side of the trail and all along the trail and at the point where once you cross the Lyund rivulet and once more after the metal sheet bridge.
The reason why, same…the water comes directly from the lake and nowadays the locals have set up a toilet with its outlet right on Lyund rivulet. So if you/anyone poop in that toilet…the “stuff” directly mixes with water and further pollutes the water which is already full of micro organisms (tiny snail head type and other tiny worms)!

We were once joined in by a local family from Salli village and they helped us to identify the water points, which are Clean for consumption….and those points are as follows >

  1. After you take on the main trail from road concrete bridge, you cross the Lyund rivulet via huge boulders and will climb a step trail and face an open stretch and further climb up to see the trek/trail with sandy composition…keep on walking and will notice one water point by your left side, skip that one and continue walking…
Kareri Lake Trek post Lyund Stream

Kareri Lake Trail post Lyund Stream

after around 10 minutes walk you will notice another water hole to your left, but this one has sitting arrangement around it…this is the first water point which is safe for consumption…refresh and refill here.

  1. After this keep on walking and you will see Lyund rivuelt to your right fall be alert here and safe…keep on walking through boulders and turn left and then right to cross over the metal sheet bridge and pass the shepherd campsite marked with goat/sheep droppings and a boulder cave…you will see another water stream flowing from the right side of the trail and the cave…so you can use this individual water stream for consumption….but do avoid Lyund water which is on to your left hand side. There is a suitable camping spot as well….and just a little further there is a tiny water source flowing by the side of a small tree…this is the second good clean water spot (look out for step trail and water flowing to its right).

  2. After this campground keep on walking for another hour or more and you will walk up, down and notice a shepherd hut across the Lynund rivulet…keep on walking up and then straight…you will also notice water flowing under boulders to your right…skip that and after more of walking you must notice water gushing out from the boulder wall to your right…this water spot is the last Clean water spot….and you will experience its being clean and refreshing just by the touch of the  water, because it is comparatively more colder and flowing at fast pace. So if you are thinking of overnight camping by the side of the lake between Nov to Dec then better refill your bottles and campers from here. From here the trail to lake is just 30 minutes walk.

We Wish You A Safe, Clean and Green Hike, you may or will notice trash all along the trail and by the side of the lake and temple…but please do not throw your part of trash/garbage…keep it in a spare bag and please bring it back to Dharamsala for proper disposal…Mother Nature and Dhauladhar will be glad to see your responsible behaviour!

Lam Dal Trek

The long trail to Lam Dal

Lam Dal Trek

Lam Dal the longest lake of Dhauladhar Mountains is in Dharamsala, Himachal Pradesh, India.

One trail for Lam Dal is from Dharamshala, Ghera and Gaj Pass, second is from Dharamsala, Ghera, Kareri village, Kareri Lake, Minkiani Pass and Lam Dal, third is from Dharamsala, McLeodGanj, Dharamkot, Gallu, Triund, Lahesh Cave, Indrahar Pass, Nag Dal and Lam Dal, and the fourth one is from Shahpur, Baleni Pass and Lam Dal and one more from Dharamsala, Ghera, BhimGasturi Pass and Lam Dal. The other two three are from Chamba side.

 

Jalsu Pass Trek

A must do easy to moderate trek by any adventure enthusiast and nature lover before the system converts it in to hell in the name of development, easy access and comfort and what ever kind of Excuse we Humans can come up with – The Jalsu Trail!

This Trek can be started either from Chamba side or Palampur, Paprola and Utrala side. The Utrala side is the best testing for the Beginners and one of the best option for Solo Trekking for Experienced Trekker and Hiker!

But never under estimate Nature and Mountains. Never judge mountains by their height. Though the trail for Jalsu Pass is open between May to October end still the Best time for trekking on Jalsu Trails is between August end to first week of October. As between Aug to Oct first week, you can find company of shepherds on trail and can even find shop cum shelter huts operational. These huts charge 60 INR for lunch or dinner and 10 INR for Tea and no charge for the night stay.

The govt is trying to make road through this unspoiled heaven and this will result in destruction of Peaceful enviornment of this Trail, uprooting of Age old huge Deodar Trees, Hunting of Leopards and Bears, Loss of grazing grounds just like in Triund Hill, illegal occupation of land for hotels and guest houses and which ultimately will deteriorize our supply of clean Air to breath and polluted water of the rivulets.

Instead of destroying such trails and mountains by making Coal Tar or Concrete Roads, the Govt should develop such trails without harming the Forest and Nature, just like US develops Trails in its National Parks.

You may check trail images over this link => Jalsu Trails

 

Aadi Himani Chamunda Devi

The centuries old temple of Aadi Himani Chamunda Devi is completely burned part Naturally and small part human err. As the temple of Aadi Himani Chamunda Devi had wooden sealing and flooring, the lighting stroke was enhanced by cylinder of liquid petrolium gas stored inside.
All leftover now is darkened walls made of stone slabs. Though the area still has sufficient snow….no approach has been made to start the restorations effort.

As of the work done to make concrete trail up to temple is also a total waste of funds as within two years the concrete pavement laid by state government has started to break and in most of parts it is already ruined…plus at some points it is more dangerous to step on some parts of trails..though the old trails is still good to follow.
Availability of water is still not dependent…you might think you will get water refill in the old water point..but that’s just a luck…you might reach the spot and find the tap dry. (that happens mostly and at times when on the opposite ridge villagers go to collect woods or grass for livestock and from the water source they untie the pipeline to drink water and leave the pipeline untied and which results in dry tap on Trail to Aadi Himani Chamunda Devi So you need to carry own water, if you want to avoid dehydration and loss of energy which is required to climb the steep trails.