Situated in Uttarakhand, Brahmatal Trek is among the best winter treks in India. This 6 days’ trek has moderately difficult terrain despite the altitude and the chilled climate. Therefore, even the beginners can take it up. Run during January-March, the trek offers the winter as well as Spring set up too. You find knee deep snow on this trek at that time on vast meadows. It’s a white trek. The below freezing temperature are -5 and -6 degrees. It’s a round trip from and to Kathgodam (1817 ft.). Before starting the trek, make sure to read these tips for winter hiking.
Here is what unravels now on.
Lohajung (7,600 ft.): Take a bus from Kathgodam to 225kms away located Lohajung, the base camp for the trek. The 9-10 hours’ drive is astoundingly scenic with the Kumaon region in its snowy splendor. You pass through incredible looking Almora (5,387 ft.) & Kuasani (6,200 ft.) and the gigantic Mt. Kamet (25,446 ft.) & Mt. Panchachuli (22,650 ft.). Situated between a cluster of some 10-12 villages, Lohajung is a small but scenic town. See Mt. Nanda Ghunti from here. Lohajung is also a pass between hill stations Gwaldam (6,365 ft.) and Wan Village (7,874 ft.). According to the folk lore, Goddess Parvati fought a war (Hindi word ‘jung’) here with the demon Lohasur, so the name Lohajung.
The Forest Trail: Next morning, the snowy in patches, Rhododendron jungle with occasional Silver Oak, Cedar, and Fir trees, fills you to the brim as you walk through.
Bekaltal (9,500 ft.): Trek for some 5-6 hours to reach this beautiful frozen glacial lake Bekaltal. Surrounded by Oak trees on snow carpeted land and rocks, the shore forms for a great camping site. Fix your first tents in this serenity.
Brahmatal (10,350 ft.): Day 03 trek is particularly a visually delightful one. Starting with the lovely woods of Oak and Rhododendron, home to the regional bird Monal, a little further, you step into open white meadows. Sights of Mt. Trishul, Mt. Bethartoli and Mt. Nanda Ghunti stun you. The shores of difficult to identify, small, frozen glacial lake Brahmatal are the campsite tonight. As per the Hindu legend, Lord Brahma meditated near this lake (Hindi word ‘tal’) and so the name Brahmatal.
Brahmatal Top (12,200 ft.): On day 04, you take an easy trek to the Brahmatal top, the highest altitude of the trek. Just carry the daypack. You climb the slope with knee deep snow. The interesting part of this trek is the suspense of what lies ahead beyond the summit. The suspense unfolds into a breathtaking surprise with some of the most stunning mountain peaks. To the right you see huge Mt. Trishul (23,500 ft.), Mt. Mrigthuni (22,490 ft.) and Mt. Nanda Ghunti (20,700 ft.), and Bethartoli Himal (20,720 ft.) stand tall and strong right there in front of you. To the left you see Mt. Chaukhamba (23,500 ft.), Mt. Neelkanth (21,300 ft.), Mt. Kamet (25,500 ft.), Mt. Hathi (6,727 ft.) and Ghoda. The forms of white is just incredible. You will also amusingly see several famous trek trails adjacent to it, like vast meadows of Ali and Bedni Bugyal, Roopkund area, though the lake is not visible, Junargali trail including the Ronti Saddle. Come back to the Brahmatal camp.
Next morning, trace your way back to Lohajung. Rest at night and in the morning, head for Kathgodam.
Still not too known, Brahmatal trek offers the much needed solitude with nature. The walks through forest, camping besides 2 glacial lakes, covering vast white meadows, the summit offering multiple breathtaking views of gigantic Uttaranchal Himalayas right in front and famous trek trails, this is among the best deals you get with nature.