Hiking Route: Gaindakot to Maula Kalika Temple/Sauraha
Date: Friday/Saturday, Feb 12, 2010 – Feb 12, 2010
Hiking Duration: ~ 4.5hrs
Hiking Distance: ~10 km
Participants: AbisheshJ, AmendraS, AsimK, AsimS, BhanuC, Deepak M, JeevanB, MamataO, NirajS, RajivS, SanjeetB, ShilpaS, SuyeshN, UpasanaR
Photos: AbisheshJ, AsimS BhanuC and NirajS
Photo Captions: ShilpaS, UpasanaR
Hiking Coordinator: UpasanaR
Creative Support: Dijup Tuladhar
Taking advantage of Friday being a holiday, we decided to go for a two day hike to a temple in Gaindakot with a stay over at Sauraha. Little did we realize that on the way to our destination we would be stopped time and again by local kids and youngsters asking for donation on the occasion of Shivaratri. It would have been pretty charming a sight to behold had it not been one too many times. Nevertheless we reached Narayanghat by midday and after gorging ourselves on famous “Narayanghat ko taas” we started our hike upto the hilltop where Maula Kalika temple was situated.
Everything there was so beautiful and laid-back
Whoever had come with the whole concept of 2 day hike being only-fun-no-hike was proven wrong when they had to walk uphill to the temple. But the effort, time and energy it took to climb up that 1800 plus stairs paid off once we discovered the scenic view from the top which took away all the fatigue.
Everything there was so beautiful and laid-back out there that it made us realize, that this is probably one of the experiences we have been missing out on, as our hectic schedule has made us forget how awe-inspiring nature is.
The temple itself though simple was very clean and well kept. It was established in 2032 BS by Kashi Nath Poudel, a local of Gaindakot VDC after witnessing Bhagabati in his dream. We spent time out there admiring the view and praising the audacity of the people who had built the temple at such a location.
The journey downhill was just as tough on our legs if not on our breathing and few of our fellow hikers took such a long time to reach the bottom that by the time we reached Sauraha, it was already evening and everyone was so exhausted that all we wanted to do was hit the bed and get some rest.
After the much needed rest, came a new and fresh morning, which was equally eventful. For some it was their first time in Sauraha so they were very eager to explore the place while some were excited about taking photographs of the wildlife there and their enthusiasm rubbed off on others as well so we all started the day all perked up.
…small canoes maneuvered with a bamboo stick was a very surreal experience
From cycling to Jungle Safari, we did everything it takes to explore the place we were in. Watching the local Tharus promote the annual Food festival in their ethnic attire, passing through their mud houses, seeing tourists on elephants, horse and bullock drawn carriages, crossing the river in small canoes maneuvered with a bamboo stick was a very surreal experience. It was as if we had stepped into another era where man lived hand in hand with nature.
Our jungle safari ride was just as thrilling, with us driving through Chitwan national park in open jeeps for four hours. The bumpy jungle road was all forgotten when we got to see animals in their natural habitat. We saw alligators and crocodiles lazying by the river banks, monkeys swinging on the branches, spotted deers eating grass and different rare species of birds going about their daily business but the most exciting part was when a couple of bears passed right in front of our vehicle scaring us to bits but also humbling us by their presence.
This Shivaratri we found ourselves close to God and his creations and we were really fortunate to have been on this trip which gave us a break from the hustle and bustle of the city life and made us appreciate life as the creator meant it to be.