Aditya was on his way to Munsyari in a newspaper van, which he boarded at 2am from Katgodham. This is "jugaad" for any traveller who will face a similar situation.
We heaved a sigh of relief and thus we used our first buffer day by hiking to Khuliya top.
Khuliya top : The bugyal of Khuliya(Khaliya) are one of the best of its kind, which gives a wide panorama of Kumaon and Api Nampa range. Trekkers/Mountaineers going deep into high altitude, a hike to this place before is the best way to acclimatize. Most of the trails in Kumaon starts at very low altitude as per Himalayan standards, so things make a little easier after a visit to Khuliya meadows.
The first and only glimpse of Panchchuli II from our room.
The beginning of the hike.
There is not much difference in terrain compared to hiking in Sahyadris, except Leeches.
Permits can be obtained either from Munsyari or Dharchula DMO. These permits will be inspected later at ITBP of Sipu, Tidang and Baling in Darma valley.
So people planning this expedition without permits, kindly avoid.
The first day of the trek was relatively simple but too many ascents and descents down the valley. The trail head at Chilamdhar (below 2000m) leads us to Milam Glacier and Kalabaland glacier to the north west and north east respectively in Gori Ganga Gorge.
Paton and Bui are first villages on the east slopes of Gori Ganga river. This place witness snowfall in winter, but at same time, these are winter houses for the people staying higher and deep into Ralam valley.
The beginnings of long walk.
Trek day 1
Altitude gain : None
Distance : 7kms
From : Munsyari to Chilamdhar by vehicle. Chilamdhar to Paton by walking(up and down)
Grade : Easy
Us without me, in Munsyari
Gori Ganga Gorge. Paton village at the right
Climbing down from Lilam post office.
One of the bridges on stream coming from Rajrambha Glacier side.
View from Bui, where we had our lunch.
The ridge in the front is the route to Milam valley and Nandadevi East Base camp.
A house in Talla Paton. Talla means lower in local language.
Our camp site at school ground of Paton. You get 3G network here.