The Roopkund trek is a six-day trek situated in the state of Uttarakhand, India in the Garhwal region. It is situated at 4,800 mts above the sea level. The base camp of the trek is Lohagunj. Lohagunj has many fields of Chaulai (a crop mainly used for making a vegetable). They grow in different colors, hence the village is also very colorful, and there is a lot of greenery around the village. It is 505 kms from the city of Delhi. Delhi to Kathgodam distance is around 280 -300 km and can be reached by bus or train both. The actual journey for Lohajung trek starts from Kathgodam.
This trek is mainly famous for its glacial lake. It is an ideal trek for beginners and whoever wants to explore the range. The spooky stories of skeletons lying there for hundreds of years make it all the more interesting and fun. Here are some reasons that will definitely convince you to take the hike.
1. The name of the lake itself has many theories as to why the name “Roopkund”. According to a local guide, Lord Shiva’s wife Parvati went towards the lake to glance at her own beauty. “Roop” means beauty and “kund” means lake.
2. In 1942, a British forest guard, HK Madhwal discovered a skeleton floating in the lake at 16,000 feet above the sea-level. It was believed to be a body of a Japanese soldier during the invasion of World War 1, but the skeleton was too old for that. Scientists researched about it and found out that the other skeletons found here were of the 200 pilgrims who died due to hailstorms. Trekkers can still spot the skeletons if it doesn’t snow heavily.
3. Bedini Bugyal, at a small distance from, Ali Bugyal which is one of the largest meadows in India has another famous mythological story. According to local legend, Parvati’s ill health made her halt at Bedini, where Gods came down from the heavens to wish her a quick recovery.
4. Another campsite, Patar Nachuni has a very interesting story. Raja Jasdhaval and his wife, Rani Balampa were expecting a child. The priest of Kanauj suggested a pilgrimage to Homkund, to get the blessing from Nanda Devi. Raja started the pilgrimage with his Royal family, servants, dance troupe and most of his kingdom. Goddess Nanda Devi was not impressed with Raja having entertainment in the pilgrimage. The goddess got so angry that she pushed the huge rocks towards the dancers and ultimately killed them.
5. The ideal camp to begin the trek is Lohajung. It is said that Parvati too stopped at Lohajung to rest. She fought a demon Lohasur, who was blocking her way to the mountains, where she was to meet a dancer who highly respected Lord Shiva.
Push yourself, just don't sit back and virtually try to take the skeleton lake trek tour, experience it for yourself. Trust me, it will be much better than my words or pictures. Create your own story, by actually seeing all that for yourself!