The Call of the Mountains, Brezza Breezing through Uttarakhand - Solo

nikhil2877

Active Member
It ain't over yet, but am towards the last leg of the trip, having a relaxed stay at Khirsu, with good connection. Putting this quick log up on the winter drive so far through Uttarakhand.

Started Dec 24, 2019 from Faridabad, returning by Jan 5.

Driving my new Brezza AMT, which has so far fared to my expectation (at times better).

Route: Faridabad-Mukteshwar-Choukori-Munsyari-Kausani-Khirsu-Rishikesh-Faridabad

The Brezza AMT does the job on the hills, had to go manual occasionally (on boulder roads). Since this was a car drive and a solo one, I'll start with the pics of my companion throughout this journey :)

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nikhil2877

Active Member
Dec 24, 2019

The original plan was to go into Uttarakhand through Tanakpur-Champawat-Lohaghat, but News feeds and friends in BCM (Satinder paaji thanks) strongly recommended avoiding UP and seek refuge in the hills as quickly as possible and I followed the advice, desitination Mukteshwar.

Route:
Faridabad-Chainsa-EPE-Ghaziabad (overfly) - Hapur BP - Moradabad BP -Rampur- Rudrapur - Haldwani- Kathgodam- Bhimtal - Bhowali- Mukteshwar

Started at 530 AM, with Brezza stocked up with accoutrements. Skipped the camp and sleeping bag, since idea was only to attempt day hikes. The morning was foggy, as it had been for some days and I was rather much eager to hit mountains this time for the sun. I knew the views will come by anyways. The drive was uneventful, with Sun obliging soon as I entered Rudrapur and then touched Snow line as I crossed the valley over after Bhowali.

Surprisingly but gladly, not a single protest or a procession on the way, which meant I was cruising all along, stopping occasionally for Breakfast, tea and lunch.

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The Sun joins me at Rudrapur. At last, photons making direct contact.
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And then there were views brightened up all around.
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Coincidently, My sister, brother in law, were on a similar trip all the way from Mumbai, with my nephew and her brother in law. They drove in their Tata Nexxon AMT and were ahead of me throughout. Their first stop was Bhimtal and it was fun catching up with them on the way.

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They had put up in a resort by the lake and it was a fantastic property.
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When it was time, I continued and reached Mukteshwar right when the Sun went beyond horizon.

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Had booked a property in Mukteshwar through Airbnb. It was a fantastic place. The place was well set up, an attractive sit out was calling me in with some warming drinks, but it was bitter cold by then and I gave it a miss !!

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Plan was to stay overnight at Mukteshwar, but the place looked definitely one to spend a long day, so booked it for two nights and in hindsight I think it was a good decision.
 

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nikhil2877

Active Member
It was a relaxing night, there were some events going around but not much to annoy one with noise. Understandably, Christmas and New year celebrations were definitely on buzz. Nonetheless, the sleep was rejuvenating and in all agreement, the stay was a comfortable one indeed at Anupam's place. He had me serve dinner in the room and the bed had a heated blanket, which definitely relaxed all of my back muscles, kinda therapy. There were couple of other resorts around that location and all looked attractive (Moksh and Birdcage are their neighbours). Anupam's place overlooks the valley and they have a huge dining and sitting area, which is glassed, so you can still view the valley without getting the biting cold !!

Anyways, breakfast was quick (buffet) and after some tea and snaps, went off to a short trek downwards into the valley. Nothing much to write for it, just relished the walk and views.

btw, Anupam's place goes by the name "The Chirping Orchard". They also have a café towards Mukteshwar (2km short maybe) by the name Chirping Retreat. Went there for lunch, another 2km walk that day. Brezza was left idle the whole day !!

View from their dining hall
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Brezza soaked sun all day !!
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View from Anupam's place
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Another angle
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I had a room the opposite end, had no views from the room. He said he only gives the upper deck open view rooms to families or groups. That's the sad part of travelling alone, you're not that valuable !!
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I seemed to have got obsessed with the place, realized I clicked from all possible angles. This is btw, not a marketing stunt !! :)
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Off I go !! My head cap, which I got from Army canteen in Rudraprayag, made many to suspect that I was an Army officer either travelling to a base or on the way to a break. Interestingly, even some police posts looked at me curiously, deciphering if I was indeed one !! and I enjoyed the confusion.
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A local villager, curious to know why I am wandering around, came up and offered me some lemons (huge ones). I took it happily, and then he asked if I am interested to buy in some land where they would make me a house to visit during holidays. Seems like the business has picked up well. He showed me this place, which someone from the plains have purchased. He wanted me to deal directly, coz he wasn't interested in giving middlemen a share. I listened and questioned, just in case, you never know !!

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No clue how to turn the image upright. It was cold in Mukteshwar, after it snowed on 13th. The ice stayed around this handpump, making it to look as if it spewed all of that :)
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While waiting for lunch at their Café. Again, picture rotation not available, or I am not that expert.
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Amazing views, which I thoroughly absorbed through my eyes and lenses. That evening, I gave that lit up sitting place a chance, with a drink in my hand, but then the chill soon won over and I continued the rest inside the cozy room. It was a buffet dinner that evening (Christmas or maybe more guests), with both veg and non-veg to savour.

A much needed fantastic, aimless, relaxing day had come to an end !!
 

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