Yamunotri YatraKapat Open - 13th May 2013 (Tentative)
Yamunotri is situated in the Himalayas at an altitude of more than 10,000 feet. The area is a part of the Uttarkashi district of Uttarakhand. It is the originating point of the river Yamuna, the largest tributary of the Ganga. The approach to the Champasar or Yamunotri Glacier—the source of the river—is extremely challenging and very few attempt it. A kilometre ahead of the originating point is the Yamunotri temple, which is dedicated to the river goddess. Commissioned by Maharaj Pratap Shah of Tehri Garhwal, the temple houses a black marble idol of Yamunotri. Yamunotri is one of the 'Chota Char Dhams' of India (the others are Gangotri, Kedarnath and Badrinath). Uttarakhand is home to all the Chota Char Dhams. Of the three hot springs near the temple, the Surya Kund hot spring is the most popular. Devotees cook rice and potatoes in this hot spring and take them home as 'prasad'. Traditionally, the Divya Shila rock slab near the Kund is worshipped before prayers are offered to the goddess at the temple. The best time to visit Yamunotri is from May to June and September to October.
Saptarishi Kund, Yamunotri
Saptarishi Kund is a natural lake, which is considered to be a thriving tourist spot in Yamunotri. It is regarded as the source of Yamuna River. Located at an altitude of 4,421 m., this picturesque spot is not easily accessible. In fact, it is regarded as one among the most difficult treks in the Himalayas. The trek is of about 10 km. from Yamunotri, offering extremely cumbersome journey covered with ice. However, the striking and sprawling sight of chirping flock skating through the snow covered ponds makes the trip absolutely unforgettable. Sapatarshi Kund is a tranquil place on the backdrop of falcate glaciers, providing partly visible vistas of Banderpunch peak. Therefore, with its murky bluish water, rock-strewn banks and the rare display of Brahama lotus, Saptarshi Kund proves to be a divine spot exuding heavenly beauty. On the other hand, visitors are advised to familiarize with the climatic conditions of this region by staying at Yamunotri.
Hanuman Chatti, Yamunotri
Hanuman Chatti is a significant spot situated in the vicinity of Yumontri. It is nestled amongst the rocky terrains providing an adventurous climb. It is around 13 km. away from Yamunotri, which is why tourists visiting the later usually stop by. Hanuman Chatti is a serene spot perched at the convergence of the splendid rivers Yamuna and Hanuman Ganga. Due to this, it provides awe-inspiring scenic vistas to the visitors. A leisurely promenade by the riverside is just like a pictorial stroll in the countryside; enough to stimulate one's senses. Owing to its natural beauty, it is a popular trekking spot as well. Trekkers and travellers are provided with all the modern day amenities amidst forest environs. Moreover, apart from being a spot for reprieve from daily hustle bustle, Hanuman Chatti houses several small shrines in and around its serene locality. In effect, it is visited by a number of devotees from all over the nation.
Badkot is a town that lies in the Uttarkashi district in the state of Uttarakhand. The district is a part of Grahwal division. It is considered an important spot owing to the Char Dham Yatra of which it is a significant halt point. It is nestled at a distance of 40 km. from Dharasu. It boasts of scenic landscapes, which surround this hilly town. One can visit lush apple orchards, which are found here in abundance. Also, the great Himalayan ranges and the snow peaks of Bandarpuch provide breathtaking views from Badkot. Apart from this, it is also an ancient temple site, which attracts many devotees and tourists. However, as a tour to Badkot is included in the revered Char Dham Yatra, it is mostly visited as a part of it. All the tourists embarking on the Yatra are put up in tented camps near the sacred shrine. These tents are equipped with all the modern day facilities.
Kharsali is a small village situated at a distance of 1 km. away from Yamunotri. In fact, it is the last village in the region. Actually, Kharsali is a stimulating spot located in the vicinity of Janki Chatti. The place boasts of stunning natural surroundings and serene ambiance to the visitors, thereby making it a popular picnic spot. Nestled in the Uttarkashi district of Uttarakhand, it is quaint with numerous thermal springs and gushing falls. It is covered with splendid meadows, where oak and conifers trees surround the locales. It can be rightly said that Kharsali offers natural beauty at its zenith. Consequently, it is a renowned tourist location in this area. Apart from its natural beauty, one of the major attractions here is an ancient temple dedicated to Lord Shiva, where the Lord is depicted as Someshwara. This three-storied temple is decked with magnificent wood work and outstanding stone carvings.
Divya Shila, Yamunotri
Divya Shila is yet another pilgrimage site near Yamunotri. The place is called so, as it is a dominant rock pillar located in the vicinity of the Surya Kund at Yamunotri. The appearance and ambiance of Divya Shila is such that it gives an ethereal feeling to the devotees. It is a common belief and practice here that all the devotees should offer prayers here at Divya Shila before entering the holy town of Yamunotri. Despite the fact that the journey is quite tedious, it is said to provide devotees a unique sense of divinity and holiness. This helps them to forget all the worldly pain and suffering. Moreover, as this holy site is situated at an altitude of 3,000 m. above sea level, it provides scenic vistas and peaceful environs for nature lovers. This is the reason why, although one has to trek on a dangerous path, the devotees find it pleasurable to climb this enormous embankment.