Roopkund is situated at a height of 4700m, in the lap of Trisul massif. This usually called “Mystery Lake” since human skeletons and remains of horses were found there. The skeletons were discovered in 1942 by a park ranger. At that time, it was believed that the people died from an epidemic, landslide or blizzard. The carbon dating from samples collected in the 1960s vaguely indicated that the people were from the 12th century to the 15th century.
Roopkund is situated at a height of 4700m, in the lap of Trisul massif. This usually called “Mystery Lake” since human skeletons and remains of horses were found there. The skeletons were discovered in 1942 by a park ranger. At that time, it was believed that the people died from an epidemic, landslide or blizzard. The carbon dating from samples collected in the 1960s vaguely indicated that the people were from the 12th century to the 15th century. In 2004, a team of Indian and European scientists visited the location to gain more information on the skeletons. The team uncovered vital clues including jewelry, skulls, bones and a preserved body. The DNA test of the bodies revealed that there were two groups of people, a short group (probably local porters) and a taller group who were closely related. Though the numbers were not ascertained, it is believed that three to six hundred people perished. Radiocarbon dating of the bones determined the time period to be in the 9th century, predating the earlier inaccurate tests. After studying fractures in the skulls, the scientists in Hyderabad and London determined that the people died not of disease, but of a sudden hailstorm. The hailstones were as large as cricket balls, and with no shelter in the open Himalayas, all of them perished. Furthermore, with the rarefied air and icy conditions, many bodies were well preserved. With landslides in the area, some of the bodies made their way into the lake. What is not determined was where the group was headed to. There is no historical evidence of any trade routes to Tibet in the area or any places of pilgrimage.
Every 12 years thousands of devout Pilgrims most of them from Garhwal make an arduous trek to the lake from Nauti Village. They follow a mysterious four horned lamb that is born every 12 years near Nauti village. The lamb leads them to Nanda Devi shrine through Roopkund & Homkund & than carries on, on its own & finally disappears. This Yatra (pilgrimage) is known as 'Nanda jat' or 'Raj jat Yatra'.
An annual yatra known as 'Choti (small) Jat Yatra' is celebrated every year around the end of August or beginning of September. Starts from Wan village & ends at Bedni Buggyal. It is a very colorful event, giving an insight into local Garhwali culture.
Drive from Rishikesh to Mundoli via Devprayag, Rudraprayag and Karnaprayag. A long drive along the Ganges with beautiful landscapes and crossing few busy markets. Evening check in at GMVN guest house at Mundoli/ Lohajungkhal.
Post breakfast Continue the trek with packed lunch to Wan village. The trail takes you via Kuling village to Wan. Dinner and Overnight stay at the Camp / Guest house at Wan. (2340m).
Today we will trek 11 km (5-6 hrs) to reach Bedni Bugyal, probably one of the best camping sites in the Garhwal Himalayas. Dinner and overnight stay in tents.
Bedni Bugyal: Bedni Bugyal is a charming green meadow adorned with flowers in a spell binding varieties, in full bloom. There is a small lake situated in the midst of the meadow, where Tarpans are offered by the devotees. Situated nearby is a small temple where the devotees pay there obeisance, during their halt at Bedni Bugyal.
Rest day for acclimatization/Exploratory day. Overnight in tents.
After breakfast trek to Bagubassa. Bagua means flowery park and Basa means place. And rightly the place was full of variety of flowers including the rare Bhram Kamal, a special godly lotus found at only and between the altitudes of 14000 - 15000 ft. Today we will trek 10 km, taking about 4-5 hrs to reach today's campsite at Bagubassa. Dinner and overnight in tents.
Bhagubasa to Roopkund is steep walk in moraine 2½ hour climbing with same view as last day. In a clear day we could see many valleys down towards west and south side. Click some pictures of Roopkund and its Human remains before we climb another steep section up to Jurangalidhar (Death pass). Jurangalidhar is very good spot to see closer view of Trisul and Nandaghunti peaks. A steep descent will lead us back to Bhagubassa. Camping
A long descend with amazing views will leads us to Bhuna. Camping.
We will keep on descending along the Nandakini river to Sutol village. Camp before the village. Afternoon village visit.
We finish our last day walking at Sitel (road head) and drive on a jeep track to Nandprayag. Nandprayag is important confluence town among "Panch prayag". Check in at GMVN guest house.
We drive to Rishikesh/ Haridwar to catch train to Delhi.