Our trek to Hampta Pass formally ended with our arrival at Chattru on the fourth day. The day however was not over yet. What was coming up was much more exciting than what the past few hours until Chattru had been. Soon after a quick but to the heart’s content round of Maggi, I found myself inside a Sumo with five other equally excited people from my group. The Chandrataal lake located 14,100 feet ASL is one of the most beautiful and mesmerizing lakes in the region so the excitement on everyone’s face was obvious. More so because, the visit to Chandrataal was not something which had been decided for sure until the final day.
Given the kind of roads (read no roads in the real sense) it all depended on the weather. “A trip to Chandertaal would be possible only if there is no rain”, we were told long before the trek had started. Even though Spiti falls in what is called the rain-shadow area and hence, receives very less rainfall, when it does, it can be bad. Not that the roads need a lot of rain to go under knee-deep water anyway.
Thankfully there had been no rains for the past couple of days. At places where it was tough to decide whether the stream is on the road or the road is through the stream, the water was thankfully not more than half-a-feet deep. Something which the Sumo was able to manage without much fuss. So were its other siblings who were accompanying us to the moon lake.
Passing through big and small water-streams which came high up from the mountains, numerous beautiful waterfalls some of which were flowing right on the gravel-trail of a road that we were driving on and snow-capped peaks at some distance, we soon found ourselves driving right next to the muddy but gorgeous Chandra river.
By the time we reached the Batal bridge, even the non-tea-drinker that is me, badly needed to get a hot glass of tea (yes, not a cup but a full glass was what I needed) to regain some of the warmth. Equally was the need to stretch myself after the close to two-hour long bone-breaking journey. After one round of the much-needed and equally wonderful lemon tea at none other than the iconic Chandra dhaaba of chacha and chachi, we crossed the Batal bridge on our way to Chandertaal, just 14 odd kilometres from here.
Almost an hour more of the bumpy and dusty but extremely beautiful drive we finally reached the parking area. “Chandrataal is a fifteen-minute walk from here”, I came to know once there. Now if you have been following my last two posts (this and this) you would be knowing that my knee was screwed. So this another 15-minute walk was not something I was very pleased to hear about.
By the time I made it to the point from where its one gradual descent to the lake, I was not able to take even a single step more. Or so I thought. For what I glimpsed at for a moment changed everything and in no time I found myself sitting next to the emerald waters of the Chandertaal.
Ruchi too joined in soon. Thankfully it was not all that crowded, the way I had expected it to be.
And all the tiredness and everything that was endured in the three-hour long journey through gravel and streams up-to here was gone suddenly. The satisfaction and joy which was very much visible on everyone’s face basking in the sun was proof.
Have you ever been to Chandertaal? Or any other lake which really had mesmerized you? Would you like to go visit the Chandertaal someday?
**** Like what you read? Please like, share and/or tweet then. Sharing is caring