Undoubtedly one of the best Winter treks with mesmerizing views in Uttarakhand.
the best experience so far....limitless scenic view from the top cool guides and tentsawesome friendly people around ... snowfall was the best p...
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About the Kedarkantha Trek:
For those of you who are looking for some thrilling adventure then Kedarkantha trek is perfectly made for you. Decorated with a beguiling magnificence of falling snow and bordered with pine trees, The Kedarkantha Peak is a standout amongst the most looked for after snow trekking destinations in India. You will start this trek from Dehradun which is another beautiful destination. The drive to Kedarkantha takes you through Mussoorie, and some of the scenic beauty of the region till you reaches Sankri.
Although it is a remote route but the beautiful drive will definitely make you stare at it for long. Right from the Kedarkantha base camp, you'll see dazzling 360-degree perspectives of well-known mountain summits. This is stunning. When you get to the Kedarkantha summit, it is as though you have touched the sky and every one of the summits is at your eye level. Get mesmerized by the views as you continue walking through the magical grounds. Perched at a height of 3810 meters which is about 12,000 feet this is a perfect trekking trail which covers a consolidate distance of 20 km.
During your trek, you will come across some of the majestic sights of the snow-capped Himalayas, the verdant greenery, lush landscapes, a myriad collection of flora and frozen ponds. As you continue your trek you will also see remote towns where ladies and children are busy taking, bundles of wooden logs, wooden sticks and dry leaves to use them for cooking and set up bonfires at night. Kedarkantha trekking package gives you that perfect trekking experience that you have been long waiting for.
About the Kedarkantha:
In the celestial like the state of Uttarakhand, lies the snowy delight of Kedarkantha trek which is another beautiful trek. Close to the famous Har ki dun valley, this place is lesser visited. Steeped in unsurpassed beauty, over here you find charming villages, vast stretches of meadows, snow paths and magnificent views of the great Himalayas. The people of the region are said to be friendly and follow a unique culture and practice. Uttarakhand, permeating nature’s glory offers a dramatic landscape dotted with lovely lakes, tranquil rivers, mountains and rising Himalayan peaks.
With Kedarkantha trek route, delights in a windy trail through rich forests, snow-laden trail with patches of green, meadow used by shepherds during the summer season and witness several peaks and ranges. The thrill and excitement do not end here. Learn how to ski and feel the glee as you glide through frosty slopes. Feel the thrill as you walk through some of the beautiful views of the region. Spend some time staring at the mesmerizing beauty of the mountains.
You are likely to come across snow just as you cross the 10,000 ft mark and walk through a snow bed with full of pine trees. Along the trek, you will find some of the most beautiful campsites. Not all treks can boast of the beauty of their campsites like the Kedarkantha trek, Uttarakhand. This trek is considered as the most beautiful trek in the world. The Juda-Ka-Talab campground sits in a clearing encompassed by huge pine trees; the Kedarkantha Base campground is on an open glade with snow tops all around. It is practically as though every single one of them contends with the other for the delightful setting.
This is one trek which should not be missed by the adventure seekers who loves to take some challenges. This trek is an ideal destination for the nature lovers to bask in the prettiness of intact nature and enjoy wonderful and heavenly moments with exhilarating experiences.
Kedarkantha Trek Highlights:
- Kedarkantha Trek in Uttarakhand is one of the most beautiful treks which take you to the land of some of the best views which you will cherish for a lifetime.
- This winter trek will take you through a journey of some of the unknown places with the best views of the mountains.
- During your trek you will trek across some of the most beautiful sights with snow-capped mountains, verdant valleys and frozen ponds.
- Get a chance to witness the vivid flora and fauna of the region as you continue your trek.
- Each of the campsites is known for its amazing surroundings with the beauty of pine trees.
- Soak in the amazing beauty of the region while you continue trekking through the lush meadows, dense pine forests, cascading beautiful streams, and gorgeous maple trees.
Best time to visit Kedarkantha Trek:
The best time to visit the Kedarkantha trek is in the months of December to April. The entire region is covered with sparkling white snow and the base of alpine trees is half-submerged with it. If the snowy mountains attract you then this the best time for you to witness the true beauty of nature. The months of June to September are the monsoon months and one must avoid trekking at this time. The trekking route remains open in the summertime but the beauty in the winter months is truly paradisiacal that makes it the best time to visit Kedarkantha.
Temperature: Day: 8°C to 15°C and Night: -5°C to 3°C
Trekking distance: 20 km
Maximum Altitude: 12,500 ft
Difficulty Level: Easy To Moderate
Railway Station: Dehradun is the nearest railway station
Airport: Jolly Grant Airport, Dehradun
Base Camp: Sankri (10 hrs drive from Dehradun)
ATM: Purola has the last ATM point before your trek begins.
From Dehradun, drive to Sankri via Mussorrie. Lunch will be had along the way. The drive is a delightful one as the path takes you along the Yamuna, exquisite Tons river and pine forests. Once you reach Sankri that is steeped in natural beauty, check into the hotel. In the evening, enjoy a stroll in the charming village and warm up for the Kedarkantha trek to come ahead. Overnight can be spent in the hotel.
Though the tour starts from Dehradun but the trekking trip commences from Sankri only. Having an early start after a healthy breakfast at the hotel it’s a journey straight towards Juda Ka Talab which is based at an altitude of 9100 feet. It’s a 4km trekking journey and the approximate time for reaching the same is around 5 hours.
The journey begins by moving out of Sankri village through an extension called Sor. Once the village is crossed the road takes a wide curve and climbs sharply. Moving along the stream this is the road that moves towards the Kedarkantha.The initial climb would be climbing several bridges through dense forest trees and thick carpet of maple and pine leaves all brown in color. It’s an exquisite vision and a pictorial view that leaves all mesmerized. The trail is wide and one can hear the sounds of running streams all through but may not be in view till much further.
On the way one can view remote villages where women and kids are found carrying bundles of wooden logs, wooden sticks and dry leaves to utilize them for household cooking and setting up night fire. While crunching the dried maple and oak leaves on the way up one can also view Himalayan Languars swinging from one branch of trees to another. Though they are somewhat a shy animal it’s difficult to have a gallant view of them as they move quickly from the vision’s range. Apart from this, boars, martens and hares can also be spotted in this region.
The scenario however changes a lot in the summer months when the luscious meadows remain verdant green with hilly flowers of unique kind. Crossing few streams and continuing through the trail and rising sharp through dense oaks one can reach the beautiful pictorial spot of Jadu Ka Talab which can never be missed by any trekker due to its sharp contrasting and unique beauty.
The intoxicating journey continues day where the trekkers are destined to trek towards Kedarkantha base which lies at an altitude of 11, 250 feet. The distance from Jadu Ka Talab to this destination is about 4kms and in a moderate speed it takes about 2.5 hours to reach the place. After having the morning breakfast set out for the next journey where the trail is somewhat straight forward and quite visible. The track again begins through dense forests of pine and oak trees only and through steep ridge and much more dense areas.
In this trail one will come across many shepherd huts in open meadows which are equally delightful to see. At an altitude of about 10,400 feet one can visualize traces of snow in and around the track only if it is the winter months trekking. With winding roads meandering through dry oak forests, stretched meadows and through lanes around shepherd huts the trail continues to Kedarkantha Base. In the midst one can take a long break to reenergize the body and get the enthralling view of natural extravaganza in the area. Just before reaching the Kedarkantha Base one can enjoy the fascinating views of arc shaped range of snow clapped mountains comprising of Bandarpoonch, Swargarohini, Kala Nag and Ranglana standing out proudly showcasing their beauty.
After reaching the base, set up the tent in a preferred selected place which is open and one can enjoy a clear view of the night sky. However it is advisable to be based in close group rather than in much scattered way in the dark. The evening sky is equally beautiful with glowing stars and shining planets ornamenting the sun. As the night grows the sight becomes more charming with the Milky way stretching from one end to the other, the dense network of stars and glistening peak of the mountain all come together to provide an awe striking view that remains imprinted in mind. However in such a height it is possible to cold waves so proper woolens should be carried for protection. Overnight sleep at the tent.
The fourth day of the trek is destined to conquer the Kedarnath Peak. Today the trekkers need to hike an elevation from 11,250 feet to 12,500 feet. The schedule of the day includes hiking to Kedarkantha peak and then again descending back till Juda-ka-Talab. The total journey comprises of 6kms altogether and takes about 7 hours of time at a moderate speed. Ideally, it is a long day but the excitement of the journey and conquering the peak would be far greater and much more worthy in compared to the challenges that lay ahead for the visitors. The day begins early with a filling breakfast and enjoying the sunrise from the Kedarkantha meadows which is a simply amazing, pure and divine. One can bask in the first rays of the morning sun and gain as much energize possible for the day ahead. One can even visualize the beautiful peak from these meadows which elevate the excitement. The way to the top can be made through several trails but it is better to take the main trail as it keeps rising at an even level.
On this route, the trekkers need to again cover a few portions of oak forest but the journey through this trail is much easier and faster. Climbing through the forest till its end , one can find the Kedarkantha peak much closer. Towards the end of the trail and close to the top the trek becomes a little difficult and can be a little strenuous especially for the first time trekkers. However the view from the top and the amazing location is worth the effort.
At the top of the peak there is a beautiful yet small temple dedicated to Lord Shiva and goddess Parvati. There is a small shrine of Lord Ganesh too.The arresting 360 view of the snow clad peaks of Uttarakhand is intoxicating and beyond words to be penned down. One can relax at the top for some time and enjoy the magical beauty of nature and then descend towards base camp by noontime. After reaching the camp take a break for lunch and refreshments. Once relaxed, set out for descending furthermore to Juda-Ka-talab. This time again, it’s a journey back through dense oak forests, pine and maple trees, shepherd huts and frozen streams.
On reaching the campsites set the tent and mark the end of another delightful day with dinner and overnight sleep at the tent. However for the enthusiasts travelers there’s option of setting up a campfire here and enjoying the night time ambience chatting and having good time with the journey friends together.
Today the schedule is marked for descending further to Sankri which descending from 8900 feet to 6400 feet. The time for descending this approximately 6 kms long trail takes about 4 hours or more at a moderate speed. The first morning sun from Horegaon campsite is the nexus of thick wood pine forest is equally beautiful. After having the breakfast, pack the backpack to descend furthermore through a more clearly marked well paved pathway, laden with small stones. Meandering through rich dense pine forests one can view the sight of streams flowing by in a slow and steady way. One can fill in water here for the rest of the track.
A little further down the trail comes to a ridge from where it gives a splendid view of Har ki Dun valley or the Valley of Gods in its blissful and harmonious view. One can explore the place more and enjoy photographing the lovely valley from the distance. One can also enjoy the sights of the lovely flora and fauna and take quick snaps of the same to retain the memories of the beautiful placed captured for future. Descending a furthermore through the dense forests one can see the first signs of habitation and by evening one can reach Sankri. The last 2500 feet is filled with dense pine forests.
On reaching the base, get back to the hotel and freshen up and get settled for the day. If the enthusiasm stays, one can again get out exploring the village to collect some local items to keep as a souvenir of the location. Though not many products are available here but one can always have small hand made goods, wooden toys and wooden home décor items for friends and families. Get to know the locals and know more about their lifestyle here. Life moves at a slow pace in Sankri which is home for about 120 families. Potatoes, rice and apples are the main ingredients here and people leave in wooden houses to protect from colder weather. The belief in religion is quite strong here and regular melas or fairs are organized here with entertainment being done with folk songs and native dance. Dinner can be tasted at the dhabas based here serving local food or one can enjoy delicious North Indian and Western cuisine at the hotel premises. Overnight stay at the hotel.
The last day of the trip is the departure day where the trekkers need to travel back to Dehradun. Tata Sumo or a similar make car will be provided for a travel back of 220 kms to the city. Start the day early by enjoying the morning sun once again from Sankri and then enjoy a healthy and relishing breakfast at the hotel. Pack the bags and take all the belongings and check out of the hotel by 8 am approximately so that the journey to Dehradun can be started early. The distance takes about 10 hours to reach excluding the break times so the earlier one starts its always the better. The return will again be through NH123, though there are other routes available too through Mori Sankari Road or through NH72. However it’s better to take the initial NH123 route only as it is the shortest and have much less traffic. Scenic ambience and lovely surroundings mark the roads back to Dehradun city. Cherish the picturesque beauty of the location, the avid beauty of nature, the stretched landscapes, the verdant meadows and splendid ambience that pleases the heart in every way.
The best part of the trip, is that the trip is well balanced and smartly packaged so that travellers get ample rest and relaxation and enjoy the beauty at every stop without hurrying at any place. It is a trip well designed to take care of the comfort and facilities of the travellers.The trip back to Dehradun reaches around 7 o clock evening time. The vacationers can be off boarded either at the railway station or at the airport as per their requirement. From here they can plan the next journey by booking a travel well after 8 pm. For all those who wish to stay in Dehradun and enjoy the place for a day or more can book a hotel in the city and spend some more lovely days in midst the beautiful Himalayas.
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Rated : 5.0
Undoubtedly one of the best Winter treks with mesmerizing views in Uttarakhand.
Rated : 5.0
the best experience so far....limitless scenic view from the top cool guides and tentsawesome friendly people around ... snowfall was the best part of the trek. I couldn't say more about the nature there.
Rated : 5.0
For long I have been planning to go out for a trek along with my friends and was really glad when I saw this amazing Kedarkatha trek. The pickup was on time and we reached our destination. The accommodation and the food were perfect as well. We had the most amazing guide with us, he was very jolly and was telling us about each of the places. Loved this trek.
Rated : 5.0
I had been planning to do Himalayan Trek from last 2 years n I'm really happy that I chose Kedarkanth Trek. A huge credit goes to the operator who were always on their toes for any kind of service. The hospitality of pahadi people is impeccable when compared to 5 star hotels. I truly enjoyed my stay n trek due to our trek leader (Mr. Vijay Rana) n other people around.
Rated : 5.0
I have been to Kedarnath trek (4-3-2017 to 9-3-2017) along with my friends. I really appreciate you guys for making this trek a memorable one and immensely grateful for having spent the best time of my life (till date). Even though, inopportunely six members cancelled their trip at the last moment Hike to the Himalayan members didn’t cancel/postponed the trek and this is quite imposing and an invaluable display of great gestures. The accommodation and transport facilities provided to us were impeccable. The food was extremely good and our guide ( Mr Guddu Singh Rawat) is well versed in handling each and every situation gingerly. It was an amazing experience and I would like to mention that I will definitely rely on your team for my future adventures.
Rated : 5.0
We had booked for a private departure as we had only 5 days in hand and Thrillophilia arranged it for five days for us. The experience was just amazing and we reached back to Dehradun on time to catch a bus to reach Delhi on the next day. The guide was great and the views from Kedarkantha top are breathtaking.
Rated : 5.0
We were 4 friends and wanted to go for the Kedar Kantha trek in august and it was really a worthwhile experience. We had never trekked before and this was the best first trek we had gone for and was definitely suggesting to all of our friends.
Rated : 5.0
We had booked the package of Kedarkantha with the hargaon campsite and the views from the Hargaon were mesmerizing and we had so much fun during the trekking experience. We had even made a snowman and had fun in the snow with other group members. The food provided to us was nutritious and tasty as well. Thanks to Thrillophilia for an amazing experience.
Rated : 5.0
We had trekked there in the month of December and the trek was completely covered with snow and the temperature was quite low. As we are previously informed about this while booking we were well prepared and had an amazing experience.
Rated : 5.0
The food, the tents, the guide everything was perfect and the entire trekking experience was wonderful. We were in a group of 18 people and we had two guides with us and we had seen some beautiful forest areas in between. The summit walk starts at 3 a.m and once we reach the top, it was just amazing watching the sunrise.
Kedarkantha trek can be visited for most of the year, but the best time is between December to April when the roads are submerged under a blanket of snow and the snow-covered alpines look beautiful! June to September are months to be avoided for trekking, because it rains very heavily and walking gets difficult.
If you travel to Kedarkantha between December to April, you will certainly find snow on your trek. Snowfall usually begins in mid-December and lasts till the third week of April.
Day 1 - Drive from Dehradun - Sankri (7-8hrs for 186 kms)
Day 2 - Trek from Sankri - Juda-ka-Talab (3-4hrs for 4 kms)
Day 3 - Trek from Juda-ka-Talab - Kedarkantha Base (3 hours for 4 kms)
Day 4 - Trek from Kedarkantha base - Kedarkantha peak; descend to Juda-Ka-Talab (6 kms)
Day 5 - Trek from Juda-Ka-Talab - Sankri (6 kms)
Day 6 - Drive back from Sankri to Dehradun (7-8hrs for 186 kms)
The height of the Kedarkantha trek is about 3,810 meters, which is approximately 12,500 feet high. The trek is a perfect 20 km long trail where you can witness the beguiling beauties of Himalayas and feast the eyes with snow-covered pathways. The route is arched with the alpine thickets and the wide array of fauna and fauna are a plus to its beauty.
As the trek height is quite high it gets cold as soon as the altitude increases and the oxygen supply also drops. If you are planning a visit to this high altitude make sure that you are not suffering from any breathing problems!
The cost of Kedarkantha trek is INR 6990 per person and one can also enjoy discounts on group bookings. Packages is inclusive of the transfers, meals, stays, and various other amenities so make sure that you read the inclusions carefully.
- 2-3 Shirts / T-shirts
- 1 Warm shirt/full sleeve T-shirt
- Water-resistant and warm Trekking Pants
- 1 Windproof/water-resistant jacket with a hood
- 1 Thick Fleece / woollen sweater
- Thermal innerwear
- A Woollen cap, fleece gloves, waterproof gloves
- 4-5 pairs of thick woollen socks and regular socks
- Scarf/muffler - if needed
- Comfortable waterproof Trekking or Snow Boots
- Camp shoes like sneakers/sport shoes
- Raincoat / Poncho
- Cap / Hat to stay safe from the sun
- Sunglasses with UV protection
- Sturdy walking stick / Trekking pole
- Sunscreen Lotion, Lip Balm
- Torch / Flashlight (with extra batteries)
- Medicines, in case of any specific medication
- Personal toiletries
- Waterproof backpack for daily use and essentials
- A rain-shield for your bag
- Waterproof carry bags
Please do not carry the normal sports shoes. As you need the good traction during the trek, shoes from Woodland or Forclaz 500 is a recommended choice.
The Kedarkantha Trek is an easy one and that is the reason it is opted by a number of beginners. To make your first trekking expedition a memorable one this trek always a great choice. The best time for this trek is in the winter season is from December to April as the terrains are all snow-covered and the views of the Garhwal Himalayas will melt your heart away. The trek is about 20 km long and you need 4 active days to complete this trek, so make sure that you keep yourself hydrated and carry enough warm clothes.
All meals, including breakfast, lunch, and dinner and morning-evening Tea/Coffee with light snacks will be provided during the trek. Refer the inclusion for more details.
No, Kedarnath and Kedarkantha are not the same, Kedarnath is a small town in Uttrakhand that is known for its temple while Kedarkantha is a mountainous peak of Uttarakhand famed for its trekking trail. Both of them are located in Uttarakhand itself but have different geographies. There is a distance of about 100 km between the two.
It is advisable to carry a 6L backpack, weight to be carried will depend on your requirements and capacity.
The trek route leading up to Kedarkantha is an easy one which is why it is preferred by beginners. The roads aren’t very steep and there are just a few ascends and descends, especially towards the end between the Base Camp and the peak of Kedarkantha. Moreover, the trekking pole makes it easier to walk even if the roads are submerged under snow. The route is home to lush greenery and beautiful streams, along with verdant valleys, maple trees, and pine forests which make the journey a picturesque one.
No, there will be no mobile connectivity during the trek.
There are many ways to travel to Sankri from Dehradun. You can take a public bus which costs Rs. 300 and takes about 10 to 11 hours. It leaves early morning at 5 AM and 7 AM. You can also take a shared cab or a jeep which leaves at 8 AM. The ticket costs Rs. 600 for this ride and you can find them opposite the Grand Hotel near Prince Chowk, at the taxi stand. However transportation from Dehradun Bus stand to Base Camp 1 & Return is included in the package.
In December, Kedarkantha weather ranges between -3°C to 5°C. Being at a height of 12,500 feet, the temperature drops as you climb higher and the winds become more chilly. There is also a very good chance of experiencing snow while trekking in December.
Generally, the recommended period to go on the Kedarkantha trek is between December to April. In these months day temperature is 8°C and night temperature is -5°C to 3°C.
Day 1 - Drive from Dehradun to Sankri - 186 kms
Day 2 - Trek from Sankri to Juda-ka-Talab - 4 kms
Day 3 - Trek from Juda-ka-Talab to Kedarkantha Base - 4 kms
Day 4 - Kedarkantha Base to Kedarkantha Peak and back to Juda-ka-Talab - 6 kms
Day 5 - Trek from Juda-Ka-Talab to Sankri - 6 kms
Day 6 - Drive back from Sankri to Dehradun - 186 kms
Kedarkantha trek is best enjoyed in November because the weather is pleasant and not bone-chilling. There is a good chance of clear skies which won’t play spoilsport to your trip and camping becomes easier in good weather. In November, the famous Juda-Ka-Talab too, won’t be frozen, so you can enjoy the unparalleled beauty of the lake with the snow-capped mountains in the background.
A basic medical kit and medical devices like oxygen cylinders and oxi-meters are included in the trek cost and tour guides are trained to handle first aid situations. Apart from this, if you have a certain medical condition or require specific medication, you will need to bring it along on the trek.
Trekkers should, in general, be physically fit. This means that patients of lung problems and asthma are not allowed to trek. Also, if you have a bleeding ulcer, then trekking is prohibited by doctors. But many people overlook the dental checkup before going to trek. An abscessed tooth can put an end to the journey. In general, do not over train just before the trekking expedition. Take your training to the peak only 2 to 3 weeks before. After that, just maintain the fitness level. If you try to strain yourself at the last minute you will encounter fatigue. It is dangerous because it can lead to injury.
KedarKantha trek weather in the month of October is quite pleasing and one can have a gala time witnessing the natural grandeur. The temperature ranges from 4 to 14-degree celsius that means that the nights are cold while the days are warm making it apt for trekking. Another great thing about trekking Kedar Kantha in this month is that you can witness the clear skies contrasting with the lush greens of the upland.
The journey from Dehradun to Sankri and back is by car. An SUV like the Tata Sumo or similar will be provided for group transport. The rest of the journey is a trek on foot.
First of all, you will come across the Yamuna River while on your way to Sankri. At Juda Ka Talaab you will come across a small lake. This lake turns ice cold during the winters. You have to pass through a forest to reach till here. While traveling from Shepherd Camp to Kedarnath base you will come across vast snowy mountains – with green patches on them. You will find snow-covered pine trees which will follow you all the way to Kinnar Kailash in the Gangotri range.
Yes, the Kedarkantha Trek is considered an easy one, which is why most beginners opt for it as well. The snow-laden roads and dense forests are easy to walk through, except for the point between the base camp and the peak, where the climb can get slightly strenuous. Apart from that, the distance covered ranges from 4-6kms per day at moderate speed, making this trek an easy one.
If you do not suffer from any respiratory or health disorder, the Kedarkantha trek is absolutely safe. It is in fact easy and safe for beginners as well. You’re accompanied by a qualified and experienced Trek Leader and support staff, and everything else on the trip is well taken care of.
Yes, definitely. The Kedarkantha trek route is considered to be easy to moderate which means it is suitable for beginners. The journey beginners at 6400 feet and you have to travel up to 12500 feet, but the roads aren’t very steep with just a few ascends and descends along the way. Each day you walk for approximately 4 hours which is considered the regular trek pace even for amateurs, and are accompanied by expert guides. You’re welcomed by beautiful snow-laden roads and alpines along the way, which make the long walk absolutely worth it.
In terms of distance, the trek from Sankri to Kedarkantha is 20kms long. In terms of days, the trek is four days long, which includes two and a half days to ascend and one and a half days to descend. An additional day prior and after the trek is reserved for travelling to and from Dehradun. The entire trek is 6 days long.
- To begin the trek one needs to begin the journey from Dehradun
- Dehradun is 255 kms from Delhi
- On reaching Dehradun, you have to proceed to the village of Sankri which is 186 kms from Dehradun
- Your trek begins in Sankri which is a 20 kms route to Kedarkantha
- So overall, the distance covered between Delhi to Kedarkantha is 461 kms
Kedarkantha, which translates to Throat of Lord Shiva, is a mountain 20 kms from Sankri village, standing tall at a height of 12500 feet. Dedicated to Lord Shiva, the legend dates back to the Mahabharata era, when the Pandavas went to Lord Shiva to seek his blessings after the war of Kurukshetra. Lord Shiva refused to meet them and instead disguised himself as a buffalo. Bheem, one of the five Pandavas, noticing something amiss among the herd of buffalos, refused to let the disguised buffalo (Lord Shiva) pass, which led to a battle between the two. Eventually, Bheem ripped apart the buffalo and wherever parts of his body fell, was where the Pandavas later built temples. Kedarkantha was where his throat fell, hence the name. Another belief is that the Juda-Ka-Talab came into being when Lord Shiva let down his hair and water flowed from it, creating a pond.
No, You will not be allowed to smoke or drink during the trek. Since the places here are at high altitudes and one cannot ever breathe properly, thus smoking is a Big no. Consumption of alcohol is strictly prohibited during the whole trail as it may cause nausea and vomiting.
During the trek, on your stay at Sankri, you will be provided with a stay at a hotel room with an attached washroom. As you proceed towards Kedarkantha you won't be able to find a washroom elsewhere and in most cases, only one toilet tent will be available for everyone to use.
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